All the news that fits their way of thinking.

There are a lot of wire stories the Seattle Times could reprint and plug from their home page, but they chose this one:

National sales tax idea getting fresh look

With budget deficits soaring and President Obama pushing a trillion-dollar-plus expansion of health coverage, some Washington policymakers are taking a fresh look at a moneymaking idea long considered politically taboo: a national sales tax.

Uh-huh.

Had John McCain won the White House… were the Republicans currently even a credible opposition party, if not a legitimate threat to seize control of the House or Senate in 2010… then perhaps the notion of a highly regressive national sales tax might amount to something more than just a right-wing fantasy.  But he didn’t, they’re not, and it won’t.

So the question remains, why would the Times reprint this particular piece of pointless, idle speculation? Wishful thinking?

Comments

  1. 1

    argyle sweater spews:

    the system emmanuel calls for in this article isn’t as dire and regressive as some national sales tax proposals have been in the past. it largely follows the european model of a VAT (which in many cases is refundable) and exempts lower wage earners from income taxes altogether. additionally, this particular model pays for a national healthcare plan – which, i thought, most people here wanted.

  2. 2

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    I agree Goldy…it’s about as likely as you becoming a Conservative.

    A consumption tax at point of sale has the advantage of being fairly easy to administer.
    A lot of States do have sales tax. Sales taxes are assessed by every state except Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon. It also has the advantage of having everyone who buys something to participate in paying for government. Rich folks consume more than poor folks…so would pay more $$ per person. That’s not a bad thing in my view.
    You could exempt food.

    Once again, it appears the Democrats are scheming up ways to take more $$ out of the pockets of taxpayers. Like the Washington State Income Tax. Goldy, at least you have the guts to come out and say it is NOT Tax Revenue Neutral. The elected officials in our State who support it hate the question about Tax Neutrality…they dodge it at every turn.

    Anyway…a National Sales Tax that exempts Food. Worth exploring.

  3. 3

    Now you see it spews:

    I actually LIKE the idea of a national sales tax. It encourages savings (not consumption). Too hard on the poor? Just exempt all food, and even items under $25 (school supplies, basic items).

  4. 4

    Blue John spews:

    Be afraid. Be very afraid. Vote Republican and return to the good old Reagan years.
    That’s what they choose to write about? No wonder nobody reads their paper.

  5. 5

    Blue John spews:

    Tax-neutrality
    Characteristic that taxes do not interfere with the natural flow of capital toward its most productive use.

    This sounds like code speak for don’t make the Rich people pay any taxes.

  6. 6

    spews:

    Goldy is angry that the Seattle Times reported that there’s renewed interest in creating a VAT here in the states?

    That’s just plain weird of Goldy to object to them running that article. There IS talk of a nation sales tax.

    Here’s the the pluses and minuses of a national sales tax:

    Pluses: “It would provide a source of money to help balance the budget, pay for a health-care plan.”

    “It’s a simple, highly visible taxing system that affects everyone and is difficult to dodge.”

    And the only minus: “It’s regressive.”

    This is getting old. It’s like Goldy no longer wants to talk about the issues themselves. He wants to talk about what the Times thinks about various issues.

  7. 7

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Blue John–
    To me, tax revenue neutral means the new tax system is set to generate the same amount of tax revenue as the current tax system.
    In other words, it is not a tax increase or decrease…simply a change in methodology.

    You have been a long-time envier of “rich people” Blue John. Your statement
    “This sounds like code speak for don’t make the Rich people pay any taxes.” defies all statistics which shows “rich people” already pay the vast majority of taxes.

    Look Blue John…you may get your wish of buying that $200,000 house in Seattle in the next 5 years. “Rich People” aren’t nearly as “rich” as they used to be. In fact, I saw a recent article that updated projects show Federal Taxes are waaaaaay behind projections meaning the deficit is even higher.

    You should be glad you have so little to lose BJ. I recall you said you feel behind due to some medical issues. That’s too bad. But no reason to be bitter towards others who are successful.

    The path of class warfare is filled with no winners…only losers.
    Envy is an ugly sin.
    Grow up and Wise up BJ.
    Stop being such a “fop”.

  8. 8

    Steve spews:

    Rasmussen Poll Alert!

    The Rasmussen Daily Tracking Poll has the Presidential Approval Index at +6, up 500% from Tuesday.

    In the Rasmussen Generic Congressional Poll, Democrats have increased their lead over Republicans to +3.

  9. 9

    rhp6033 spews:

    So – I wonder how much the VAT would be on newspapers? Want to bet that Blethen & Co. would throw a hissy fit if they didn’t get an exemption, like they do for the state sales tax?

  10. 11

    YLB spews:

    The elected officials in our State

    This State is NOT YOUR STATE.

    According to your own blatherings, you’re an absentee landlord,

    FIEND!

  11. 12

    YLB spews:

    Wingnuts love sales taxes. When the chips are down in state budget showdowns, they’ll agree to a rise in one tax and one tax only – the sales tax.

    Only the less affluent pay them to any large degree.

  12. 13

    spews:

    @10

    Explicitly? Where did I say I supported it? I merely reprinted the advantages and disadvantages of the VAT.

    BTW, Demo, if you’re so against regressive taxes, do you voluntarily pay more taxes than you have to, out of fairness to the poor?

  13. 14

    Don Joe spews:

    Cynical @ 7 spews:

    The path of class warfare is filled with no winners…only losers.

    Precisely. Now, why do Republicans continue to wage war on the middle class?

  14. 15

    spews:

    This IS a debate that needs to be had, and it’s not as simple as Goldy has portrayed. While a VAT or national sales tax is regressive, it may be the only way to pay for national health care, which would disproportionately HELP the poor.

  15. 16

    Blue John spews:

    But no reason to be bitter towards others who are successful.
    It’s never THAT simple, and you know it.

    I admit it, I’m bitter about some successful people.
    People who are successful only through cheating and not playing fair.
    People who are successful by not paying a living wage, or using illegals.
    People who are successful by purchasing tax loopholes.
    People who didn’t earn their money, who inherited it. People who, if they didn’t have a successful daddy, would probably be homeless.
    I don’t admire welfare cheats, or foster parents gaming the system.
    And don’t give me the argument of “that’s way it is so why fight it.”

    I admire people who pulled themselves up by the boot straps honestly and fairly. It’s not easy to become rich for most people. There is a zero sum aspect to it. We cannot ALL be rich. We, as a society, have to help those who don’t have the means or skills to live above poverty.

    I pay my taxes and support my community. I support causes that raise progressive taxes if it will be used effectively.

  16. 17

    Blue John spews:

    The path of class warfare is filled with no winners…only losers.
    That’s always felt like code for “I’m rich, I’m better than you, why don’t you accept it, and take it.”
    I disagree. Of of the things America came to stand for, was a dislike of class. America was a place where class was not supposed to be less important. Why are you trying to bring back the era of kings?

    Oh I get it. You are conflating class with wealth. When you type “class” you mean “rich”
    You mean….
    The path of wealth warfare is filled with no winners…only losers.
    You hope the rich people to be nice to you, maybe some will rub off?

  17. 18

    headless spews:

    Why does Cynical impute the motive/feeling of envy to people who want to tax the rich at a fair rate.

    The Blethens must be envious of poor people because they favor regressive tax schemes that hurt the poor.

    If you can see the flaw in that reasoning, then I’m sure that you are lying about what you say.

  18. 19

    argyle sweater spews:

    what does everyone think of implementing a VAT while also exempting lower income earners from income tax?

    i’m looking for some real discussion, not the usual partisan talking points i find on both sides of the aisle here.

  19. 20

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @3 I don’t like the idea of a national sales tax. Here’s why:

    Poor person making $10,000 a year spends $10,000 and is taxed on 100% of his income.

    Rich person making $250,000 a year spends $50,000, invests $200,000, and is taxed on 20% of his income.

    Poor person pays taxes on 5 times as much of his income as rich person pays.

    In what universe, by what sort of sentient creatures, can that possibly be considered fair?

  20. 21

    Blue John spews:

    what does everyone think of implementing a VAT while also exempting lower income earners from income tax?
    So it’s a sort of national sales tax, and everyone pays 10% tax on everything but food.

    Seems like it would further economically hurt the middle class and the poor.
    The wealthy already have more money than they can spend, so what’s 10% more?

    I over generalize, I don’t have time to find numbers. I’m sure big brained people here can find numbers, if it’s important.

  21. 22

    spews:

    @19

    Poor people have it made.

    They won’t be paying income taxes. They get Section 8, and pay just 25 cents on the dollar for rent. They get free food stamps. Free welfare. Free lunches at school for their kids. Free medical care in the form of emergency room visits they don’t repay. They don’t buy car insurance, so they save on that expense. Free food at food banks.

  22. 23

    Blue John spews:

    @22. BS. That’s just a republican lie, that the poor live so well, to justify cutting programs.
    You try living like that and tell me how much you like it. Tell me how that works out for you. I don’t know anyone who wants to STAY poor.
    As soon as they could, they got jobs that paid something, cause it’s no fun being poor.
    And you know it.

  23. 24

    spews:

    Oh, and the poor people in the rainier valley just had a $47 billion dollar light rail system built for them, and they won’t be paying to ride it because fare collection will be the honor system!

  24. 25

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    troll @ 22-
    Gee, you sure got a rise out of Blue John when you simply point out how people are supporting themselves via the “welfare system” in Washington State.

    You can see the shameless, dripping envy and ignorance of well-meaning folks like Blue John who calls our system a “zero sum game”. That is not true. Entreprenuership is what expands the economy. It takes capital to do it. The government takes capital and chews it up.
    It is clearly a major difference between the Left and Right.

  25. 26

    Blue John spews:

    #24 So the transit system is apparently incompetent because of the poor people of Rainier Valley? Troll, you make no sense.

  26. 27

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Blue John @ 16 spews:

    I admit it, I’m bitter about some successful people.
    People who are successful only through cheating and not playing fair.
    People who are successful by not paying a living wage, or using illegals.
    People who are successful by purchasing tax loopholes.
    People who didn’t earn their money, who inherited it. People who, if they didn’t have a successful daddy, would probably be homeless.
    I don’t admire welfare cheats, or foster parents gaming the system.
    And don’t give me the argument of “that’s way it is so why fight it.”

    I admire people who pulled themselves up by the boot straps honestly and fairly. It’s not easy to become rich for most people.

    You and I are in agreement…although I am not bitter towards the people you list…I pity them. Think about it BJ. If you are bitter, who does it hurt?? It hurts YOU! Look, I have worked with plenty of trust-fund losers from both sides of the aisle over the years. I have also worked with some folks born into wealth that do amazing things. No broadbrush on this. Folks who are centered will do the right thing.

    And yes, it is difficult to become rich. It takes unbelievable hardwork and sacrifice. I came from a family that lived from paycheck to paycheck. Myself and my siblings all wprked our way thru college…paying 100%. I don’t resent it a bit. It gave me drive & determination. I don’t consider myself “rich”..you might though. It’s all a matter of perspective. I am greatful for everything I have been blessed with…God first, family next and then waaaaaaaaaay down the line wealth. It’s a matter of priorities and perspective.

    Don’t waste another ounce of your energy on being bitter or resentful BJ…it will sap your strength you need to be successful.
    Needless to say, over-focusing on how to tax “rich people” is a common denominator of the paralyzed “bitter class”. Do you think rich folks care if you are bitter BJ??
    Hell no!

    When I first started college, I had a professor who talked about redistribution of wealth. Being poor, it had quite an appeal to it. But as I studied Econ & business, I came to understand there was plenty for me if I worked hard, took risks, stayed focused, made sacrifices….no energy wasted on envy & jealousy.

    Yup BJ, there is plenty of injustice in the world. You cannot design a system where we are “all equal” aka Napoleon in Animal Farm.
    We are humans and make DECISIONS daily, good & bad, that have consequences.

    Refocus BJ…guarantee you will be happier.

  27. 28

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Here is another example of “let’s all be equal and not let anyone ever feel badly” carried to the extreme.
    A woman in Colorado has proposed to the School Board that they switch to “ROPELESS JUMP-ROPING”.
    Why??
    Because her son cannot get the hang of jump-roping and feels badly. So all the other kids must give up real jump-roping so he can improve his self-esteem.

    Is that ridiculous?
    How would School Board member Goldstein vote on this??

    Ropeless Jump-roping??
    Good exercise I’m sure…but c’mon.
    What’s next??

  28. 29

    Blue John spews:

    You can see the shameless, dripping envy and ignorance of well-meaning folks like Blue John who calls our system a “zero sum game”. That is not true.
    No, I’m enjoying challenging your wrongheaded corporate conservative talking points.

    Entreprenuership is what expands the economy.
    Also paying a living wage and recycling those wages within the community, expands the economy, but you don’t seem to count that.

    It takes capital to do it. The government takes capital and chews it up.
    Government provides a playing field for Entrepreneurship to function within. Without government regulation and limits, it’s like being told to go play football without enforcing any rules. How well is Entrepreneurship working in Somalia and Haiti and Mexico and Iraq, without some government to provide rules and regulations? How are those shining examples of capitalism doing? Do YOU want to move there any time soon?

  29. 30

    Blue John spews:

    Because you did it all by yourself, you seem to resent any thing that helps anyone do it easier, especially if you have be taxed to pay for it?

    I read your post, and you did exactly what I thought you would. One of your arguments seems to be “The worlds unfair, don’t bother trying to change it, just focus on getting personally rich.”
    You think like “I had it hard, so why change anything to make it easier for the next person.” I can give an example. In school, we had a awful teacher. Instead of telling the admin about the awful teacher, my classmate wanted all the other next year student to have to take his class, to suffer like he did.
    Can you see how stupid that thinking is?

    I think America can and should be made better. Apparently you don’t. Why do you want America to go back to the mindset of the Robber Barons or Kings?

  30. 31

    Blue John spews:

    #28. Then don’t take it to the extreme.
    Don’t fall into the typical conservative thinking where if a program helps people, and someone somewhere does something stupid with it, the the whole concept should be dismantled.
    Be pragmatic, fight to get common sense back in, don’t just be stupid and destructive.

  31. 32

    GBS spews:

    25. Mr. Cynical spews:

    You can see the shameless, dripping envy and ignorance of well-meaning folks like Blue John who calls our system a “zero sum game”. That is not true. Entreprenuership is what expands the economy. It takes capital to do it. The government takes capital and chews it up.
    It is clearly a major difference between the Left and Right.

    Finally, you may be “getting” it!!

    Bush and the Republicans chewed/wasted/squandered and lost over $30 TRILLION of capital!!

    You fucking MORON!

    That’s why we are in a mild DEPRESSION.

    Under President Clinton and the Liberals economic policies we PRESERVED the peoples capital instead of wasting it and it created the LARGEST expanse of wealth and economic activity in the HISTORY of the WORLD!!

    Fuck, and I was beginning to think you were a complete loser and imbecile.

  32. 33

    headless spews:

    re 19: Consumption taxes are by their nature regressive. Does a rich guy buy more gas for his Mercedes than some poor schlub who has to commute from Renton to Woodinville six days a week?

    What seems fair often isn’t.

  33. 34

    headless spews:

    “The government takes capital and chews it up.”

    Riiiiiiight, Cynical.
    That’s why the government has to bail the banks out.

    That’s the major difference between the right and the left: We see things as they are and strive to make them better. You just want to punish everyone because you get off on it.

  34. 35

    Blue John spews:

    And just to play with your words, cyn.
    I am grateful for everything I have been blessed with…God first, family next and then waaaaaaaaaay down the line wealth. It’s a matter of priorities and perspective.
    If wealth is way near the bottom of your priorities, you shouldn’t care about paying a butt load of taxes, since you your god and your family are so much more important than money. If the government could make it so you could spend all your time with your god and your family, you should probably give them all your money, since it is a matter of priorities and perspective. What’s really important to you?

  35. 36

    ByeByeGOP spews:

    I love it when CYNCYN

    a: Pretends to have attended college
    b: Pretends to be rich

    Very entertaining

  36. 38

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    If a poor guy makes $10,000 per year and spends it all, does he necessarily spend the full $10,000 on sales-taxable items? If he spends $5,000 on rent and utilities and $5,000 on food, clothing and medical, and all those items are exempt from sales tax, then how much sales tax does our poor bugger pay?

    ZERO!

  37. 39

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    A national sales tax is extremely fair, and, under the example above, favorable to low-income folks!

  38. 40

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    The losers under a national sales tax are the tax preparation business and the AICPA.

  39. 42

    Daddy Love spews:

    By all means, let’s raise taxes to stop running deficits. But let’s tax progressively, so that the poor are not soaked at the same (or higher) percentage as the rich, for whom teh dollar amounts are not so punitive as they are to the poor.

    Simple. Now let’s elect enough non-Republicans that we can start PAYING for our government again instead of endlessly borrowing!

    Who’s got, is defenitely going to pay.

  40. 43

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    30. Blue John spews:

    Because you did it all by yourself, you seem to resent any thing that helps anyone do it easier, especially if you have be taxed to pay for it?

    Nope…I just don’t believe the government is the most cost-effective way of helping people. I believe in a minimalist government…where people can work hard, take risks and be rewarded. People helping people is the best system. The role of government has expanded waaaaaaaay beyond what our forefathers ever dreamed.

  41. 44

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    Blue John spews:

    No, I’m enjoying challenging your wrongheaded corporate conservative talking points.

    And how has that helped you move ahead in life?? Hey, I’m a small business guy who joins you in your belief that corporate America has failed us in many ways. So what? There is still plenty of opportunity out there BJ. Corporate America is like the Federal & State Government…a huge battleship that is incredibly difficult to change course with. I was told long ago to take advantage of that by being a PT Boat who can find voids and fill them. Rather than waste my life bitching & moaning about how “unfair” things are…I evaluated the way things are and adjusted my business plan and investments accordingly.
    Comprende?

    It’s all a matter of perspective BJ…all some folks can see is trouble. Me, I believe there are gold nuggets in almost any situation.

  42. 45

    Mr. Cynical spews:

    34. headless spews:

    “The government takes capital and chews it up.”

    Riiiiiiight, Cynical.
    That’s why the government has to bail the banks out.

    That’s the major difference between the right and the left: We see things as they are and strive to make them better. You just want to punish everyone because you get off on.

    Headless, I was against the bank bailout. All it has done is push the consequences to the next generation. It was a short-term relief…with ugly long-term consequences.

    There is plenty of blame to go around. I have repeatedly said Bush was a fiscal loser…because he spent beyond our means. Bush IS NOT a Conservative. He is a Neo-Con.
    There is a HUGE difference.

  43. 46

    less is more spews:

    Now who owns this newspaper?

    Did they make any hint that they would propose that the poor newspapers be allowed to charge the flat tax and keep it as a public service?

    Why do I ask this? I knew a guy who had a friend who was into the dollar store thing before they were dollar stores. He set up a store, no business license, no sales tax number. No federal tax number, no withholding tax, straight cash.

    He sold till someone was questioned about the missing licenses. Then he shut down that store and shipped the contents to another state where he had a storefront waiting. When I met him, he bragged to me that simply scamming the sales tax this way had made him “filthy rich.” I got a tour of his yacht. I think that sales taxes get skimmed for a lot of stuff. Someone needs to call the people in Washington that are responsible for sales tax collection and suggest checking all internet, telephone, business permits, etc. This can be done by simply running two computer programs against each other. You may be being scammed for more than enough to replace any lost revenues.

    In fact, starting with this newspaper would be a great place to start. How much sales tax have they put in the public coffers. Do they add sales tax to the advertisements that they run? The AZ republic did when I worked there as a temp.

    If that doesn’t work, start a dollar store.

  44. 47

    headless spews:

    re 45: There’s always ‘plenty of blame to go around’ when you and your people are the ones to blame.

    There’s plenty to go around — but it’s mostly on you Radcons.

  45. 48

    headless spews:

    re 46: In this case, cash walks! You’d have to make one million sales to make a million dollars at a dollar store.

    That means that you would have to make 500 sales a day for 7 days a week for 5 years to gross that million $$$.

    Story sounds hinky to me.

  46. 49

    headless spews:

    re 44: I’ve lived the same way. But it’s not a strategy for systemic change.

    If the corporate ‘battleships’ are intent on degrading the environment, your flip little solution to the problem sounds juvenile compared to the serious minded people who are the left of center majority in this country.

  47. 50

    Bill spews:

    . Bush IS NOT a Conservative. He is a Neo-Con.
    There is a HUGE difference.

    @Mr.Cynical-
    Agreed on this.
    Liberals always want to lump ALL Conservatives in with the GOP and/or the Religious Right. They refuse to acknowledge that their are fiscal conservatives out there that find the Neo-Cons equally as unappealing as the current Socialist Regime. There isn’t much that separates them anymore when both perpetuate BIG Government and enormous deficit spending.

    @ Blue John.
    You illustrate Government’s regulatory role in a football analogy above. The problem is, Government is no longer a referee on the sideline making sure everyone is playing right. Government has now become the nanny in a nanny state- limiting freedoms, choice and free markets with regulatory burdens and manipulations that escalate costs, endless amounts of costly bureaucracy and laws that support statism and economic fascism.

  48. 51

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @22 If you think poor people have it made, why don’t you offer to change places with one of them? I’m sure they’ll accept!

  49. 52

    Bill spews:

    @51

    There will ALWAYS be rich and poor; the haves and the have-nots. I don’t get what people’s issue is with this? It’s been this way since the beginning when Gor had more clams than Tok and then there was envy (isn’t that how that “commandment” came about?) and it’ll be like that in the end. Liberals need to get over that and stop preying on the poor by selling their Utopian Socialist Dream.

    I think what 22 was round-aboutly getting at is that America (through capitalism-whether or not we personally agree with the ways to the means) has made it pretty darned easy to get by being poor. Compare our social services and ghettos/poor areas to the rest of the world’s and I assure you, our poor would choose the U.S.’s any ol’ day. Why do you think immigrants have been beating these doors down for the last 150 years??!!

  50. 54

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @19 That would depend on how it bottom-lines. Some people think the rich should get preferential tax treatment so they’ll invest and create jobs. Other people don’t care who pays for government as long as they get off easy. I think the distribution of tax burdens should be fair, and I don’t care very much how you get there. It’s awfully difficult for me to see how anyone can argue against fairness.

  51. 55

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @34 KlyniKalKlown is a simpleton who can’t deal with complexity or nuance. Therefore, he clings to an ideology under which everything is black or white. E.g., banks good, government bad; Enron good, regulation bad; Christians good, Muslims bad, etc.

    A wingnut who thinks our economy works better without government is like a carpenter who builds a house without a foundation.

  52. 56

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @28 Of course that’s ridiculous, and if you’re trying to use that as an analogy for what the folks here believe in, you’ve been licking too many goat pussies.

  53. 57

    Blue John spews:

    @50. You said my foot ball analogy is flawed. That the referee is not on the sideline. But where you think the referee is imposing burdensome rules, the rest of us see the referee enforcing rules of fair play for all.

    It’s the usual problem of conservatives living in Oppositeland of the Progressives. What we value as a level playing field, as a living wage, as fair trade, you see as burdensome rules, stifling capitalism.

    We think capitalism can exist quite well and thrive within a frame work of regulations that protect the American people, and so many conservatives seem to think it would be the death of capitalism. They must have unfettered capitalism regardless of the consequences.

    We see shade of gray, you see all or none.

  54. 58

    Blue John spews:

    I believe in a minimalist government…where people can work hard, take risks and be rewarded.
    Where in the world is this being implemented successfully. What country is most doing this right that you can give me as an example?
    I mean, if this is such a simple obvious solution, there must be some other place that’s doing it right.
    I’d like to see the place you would like see America be like?

  55. 59

    Blue John spews:

    #44. If I should stop whining and go better my life, why are you here? Why are you here day in and day out, whining and sniping about what Goldie and Jon write and what factoid the RNC is pushing about Obama?
    Why are you not practicing what you preach and off having even more quality time with your family and making more money?
    Really, if god and family are most important to you, why are you on this board?

  56. 60

    Don Joe spews:

    Bill @ 50 spews:

    You illustrate Government’s regulatory role in a football analogy above. The problem is, Government is no longer a referee on the sideline making sure everyone is playing right.

    I’m not sure how much of a football fan you are, but the only officials on the sideline at a football game are the chain gang–those who have the least amount of authority on the field.

    Not to say that the analogy is perfect, but, gosh, let’s do a little better with our criticism.

    Government has now become the nanny in a nanny state- limiting freedoms, choice and free markets with regulatory burdens and manipulations that escalate costs, endless amounts of costly bureaucracy and laws that support statism and economic fascism.

    Read this (2 MB PDF). It’s a discussion of income inequality across both geography and sectors in the economy (a rather more complex version of Kuznets’ hypothesis). Did you know that the government workers did better under George Bush than they did under Bill Clinton? Fascinating, no?

    The caricature capitalism that you’ve espoused isn’t any closer to reality than Blue John’s football analogy. The days when we can figure out a reasonable economic policy based on platitudes and the simplistic ideas taught in the first semester of the first-year introductory price theory class are long over.

    We are in the macroeconomic reality, now. This is the reality where we have observed things like rising wages and rising employment–a phenomenon that cannot be explained by a simple market theory of labor. This is the reality where the old supply-side saw of cutting taxes for high-income earners can, and at times does, lead to asset-price bubbles rather than investment that truly creates jobs.

    It still amazes me how few people trying to figure out the fundamental causes of our current crisis stop to ask themselves, where did the demand for mortgage-backed securities come from?

    Kris Kristofferson said, “Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.” Well, if that’s your idea of freedom, then Republican economic policies and ideas sure did a whole hell of a lot to spread “freedom”.

  57. 61

    headless spews:

    Everyone knows how to play these bubbles by now.

    Care to buy some tulip bulbs? You’ll be as rich as Croesus in a few months.

  58. 62

    headless spews:

    I have a hard time not being very suspicious of a tax that conservatives think is ‘fair’.

    I don’t know how many times I’ve been cheerily told by the well-off that life isn’t fair. I’ll bet the French aristocracy knew that very well in 1789.

  59. 63

    headless spews:

    re 50: ‘Liberals always want to lump ALL Conservatives in with the GOP and/or the Religious Right. They refuse to acknowledge that their are fiscal conservatives out there that find the Neo-Cons equally as unappealing as the current Socialist Regime. There isn’t much that separates them anymore when both perpetuate BIG Government and enormous deficit spending.’

    But, no matter how intellectual your justifications may be, your deal with the devil (the religious right) has left your party with only those lunatics — and even they are on to your manipulative con. That’s what we mean when we call you guys ‘cons’. It’s not short for ‘conservative’. It’s short for ‘confidence man’.

  60. 64

    Bill spews:

    Blue John spews:

    @50. You said my foot ball analogy is flawed. That the referee is not on the sideline. But where you think the referee is imposing burdensome rules, the rest of us see the referee enforcing rules of fair play for all.

    John, I never said your analogy was flawed.
    What I said was, it simply ISN’T happening that way. Government is no longer the ref or the umpire that the founders intended for it to be. Government has overstepped it’s intended boundaries and has gone way beyond interventionism. It has created dependency.

    It’s the usual problem of conservatives living in Oppositeland of the Progressives. What we value as a level playing field, as a living wage, as fair trade, you see as burdensome rules, stifling capitalism.

    That’s not true from my perspective.
    What I see (since you are lumping yourself in with all Progressives) is that your concept of fairness is skewed. How can anything truly be fair if someone is getting punished in the course of “leveling the field”? Everything else you value is subjective. A living wage and fair trade mean different things to different people.

    We think capitalism can exist quite well and thrive within a frame work of regulations that protect the American people, and so many conservatives seem to think it would be the death of capitalism. They must have unfettered capitalism regardless of the consequences.

    Regulations and protectionism has done nothing but drive up costs and inflate markets to keep us from knowing what the REAL costs are of goods and services. You and I both know this.

    What I don’t understand is, why do so many “Progressives” have so much trust in Government to intervene for our “protection”? Our forefathers and the framers of the Constitution(I’m assuming even Liberals still respect the Constitution, right?) warned us to keep Government in check and have a healthy mistrust of the corruption that can breed from too much centralized authority.

    Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.“- George Washington

    We see shade of gray, you see all or none.

    I agree that a lot of conservatives have a hard time seeing gray. In terms of the Constitution, there is no gray (other than Supreme Court decisions that have sh*t all over it).
    Gray is like a bisexual.
    It can’t make up it’s mind and plays by it’s own rules.
    That doesn’t make for good laws or policy.

  61. 65

    Bill spews:

    @63

    MY party?
    Uhhh…who said I was a card-carrying member of the GOP? Why assume?

    I actually agree that the GOP sold out to the Religious Right in the 80’s with Reagan (even though he did it with great apprehension)

    This isn’t Goldwater’s GOP by any means.

    Again. Get to know the term Neo-con.
    It’ll help you think outside of the force-fed, 2-party system.

  62. 67

    uptown spews:

    VAT is heavily used in Europe, so it must be a socialist plot.
    —-
    Even though the press can’t seem to tell the difference…
    A Value Added Tax (VAT) is not the same as a Sales Tax. Look it up. cause I’m too lazy to explain the differences.

    Of course we’ve all seen what happens during a recession to any type of consumption tax, revenue goes down along with the consumption.