I get into a lot of arguments with Republicans and Democrats.
Usually it goes something like this: The Republicrat demands that the other party is doing something stupid; Then I point out that both parties do things stupid all the time, and that government is incapable of producing anything that people want efficiently; then they demand that the government is a necessary evil; then i point out that everything the government does COULD be done, much cheaper and much more efficiently, by businesses; then they demand that we have to pay money for these things because we all benefit from them; then I point out that businesses have to earn their money by actually offering you something you want, whereas governments just pass a law and then collect your money under threat of arrest with guns....
So here's the question --- I want an honest, soul-searching, not an "i'll just say this because I want to further my cause" answer ---
Would you ACTUALLY pay taxes if you 100% knew that there would be NO one EVER to collect them, arrest you, or put you in jail?
Duh, nobody would. That's why after WW II, the government started withholding taxes from people's paycheck.
Very true and thanks for the great link. I do believe that if taxpayers were forced to go to their local town hall every April 15th and actually open their wallet/checkbook and hand over their hard earned cash, there would very quickly be a tax revolt in this country.
However, as the article in your link points out, since eliminating employer withholding would jeopardize the government's "golden goose", it's not at all likely to happen.
The Salvation Army and a lot of other charities, not to mention churches, collect millions without any complusion beyond wanting approval from one's friends, neighbors and conscience. Moreover, although paying taxes is less fun than sex, majorities have voted without compulsion for tax increases, local millages and the like because they recognize the need for the public services they are used to provide. Compared to many other countries tax evasion and cheating in the U.S., other than be multinational corporations, is quite low.
No, I (as I am now) won't. Most people would though, I think - again, in the state of mind they are now.
However, if taxes were organized as I described it in my tax masters hub, I would gladly pay, and likely more than I am paying now.
Probably not. I'd first have to be convinced that I was getting the promised services. However, I am a firm believer in paying for things you want. Garbage collection, education, transportation, and security should be paid for by the user and when all is said and done those items are a very small percentage of my tax bill. Things like transportation and education I shouldn't have to pay for at all since I don't use them, and I probably wouldn't pay them if I had the choice.
I also object to the way I am forced to pay for these things, via property taxes, which if I don't pay them on time, my property is taken away and sold, therefore a tax bill of a few thousand dollars is settled buy selling a property worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. That hardly seems fair.
I couldn't help but notice that no liberal bothered to answer... just about everyone here generally agrees that taxes wouldn't be paid.
I guess... if the true answer you'd give goes against your stated political affiliation...
... it's best not to answer at all!
What do you expect from a group that believes higher taxes brings greater prosperity. According to them a tax rate of 100% is better for the economy than a tax rate of 50%.
Are you being funny? Liberals don't believe that higher taxes produce higher prosperity. Yet there is a deficit that needs to get paid. The republicans against Bush tax cut expiration being stupid because they don't want to have to actually pay back the money that was borrowed.
I had nothing to do with the tax cuts that were made in previous administrations but my generation has to pay it. You don't think that pisses off a lot of people? Well it does so what, do we wait for all the big spenders to die before the deficit can be paid down because just as long as 'they' don't have to pay for it, then it is good?
Here's a thought, instead of raising taxes to pay for something, cut spending and use the savings to pay for it. The fact of the matter is, we aren't taxed too little government has expanded it's reach beyond the limits of it's enumerated powers. It has provided services it has no business providing. It is spending huge amounts on defense and foreign aid. The IRS itself costs us more than 10 billion a year and that is going to leap in costs as more than 10,000 new agents are hired to carry out the oppression of the new health care bill.
The high level of taxes actually leads to less revenues as the rich find ways to avoid paying them ala John Kerry and his sailboat avoiding 500,000 dollars in taxes.
Liberals constantly call for higher taxes, which are necessary because those same people call for more government, more regulation, more oversight of everything and everybody. One liberal recently wrote about how we should go back to the taxes of the 60's when the top rate was 91%! That doesn't leave much left over for investment does it?
Once the end of the recession is in sight we'll need to raise taxes AND cut expenditures. Otherwise the debt will get completely out of control.
Yeah, that will happen.
Government will cut expenditures.
What country are you talking about?
We could cut expenditures to near zero and debt could still be out of control.
Great Idea, Ralph! Raise taxes on the rich ... who happen to be the employers ... my boss is richer than me ... I don't work for people with less money than me, never works ... your boss have less money than you?
So, the employers have to choose, hire more workers or pay taxes ... well, jail sucks so ... sorry guys, would love to keep you on ... but I'm gonna have to let you go...
But hey, I have my revenge ... I have no kids ... and when I get too old, the healthcare ration will run out ... so, maybe I'll die a slow death alone because the young people hate all of my generation for being so freaking entitled that we wouldn't cut the budget.
Raising taxes is literally throwing good money after bad.
I'm a bit... confused...
You've demanded more government spending to end the recession (basically, macro economics of any sort argues this, and you support mainstream econ)...
... but then you say that we need to pay it back through taxes and cut expenditures... Wouldn't this lead to another recession?
You want more spending through debt but then you want us to pay the debt off via future gouging... ... ? It's confusing... it's like... You need to spend like a drunken sailor to get the economy back on track... but to do so you need to go heavily in debt. And then we'll somehow pay it back when the economy is better because we spent all our money earlier?
It's like... "to get the economy back on track, we need to get everything for free now. Then, once everyone is happy (because we got everything we want for free), we'll pay it back because everyone will be richer... because they sold all their stuff for nothing... ? ... but it'll work out!"
... how can that be coherent?
And you daughter and her children and her children children and her childcare's grand children will be paying the cost of "free" health care ....
Raising taxes will not help because there comes a point when there's no more to tax.
At this point cutting spending, including military spending. Including individual welfare. Including corporate welfare. Including farm subsidies. Including school subsidies. Including social security is the only option at all.
You cannot raise taxes enough to cover all of these things. There aren't enough rich people to steal from and the poor are already poor enough.
IT ALL has to be cut to the bone. Every politician's favorite pork barrel project and every "necessary" expenditure must be cut. And nobody, republican or democrat is willing to do that. Tax cuts are not the problem. Spending increases are. And there's plenty of blame on both sides of the aisle for that.
There is plenty of blame on both sides for sure but still, if they don't let the tax cuts expire then that wont help either.
This is what I see. The already filthy rich got a big tax break while the middle class got a mediocre one and the poor always get screwed anyways...
Now, you are saying that the already filthy rich shouldn't have to pay the taxes that everyone else was already paying because rich people deserve a bigger break because they makes lots of money and shouldn't have to pay the same taxes as everyone else.
So in the last ten years, while everyone else was paying their dues, the rich got a break and now that they need to ante up, they believe that their extra (guessing) $500 bucks a month is going to make this radical difference because that money could go to their personal spending while another 10,000 or so just sits collecting interest that they wont spend???
I think they are being selfish. Yes, cuts could and should be made all the way down the line but the ones who got a break for the last 10 years need to pay up now. Besides that, the 'free' health care clinics are paid for by private donations. And the other 'free' health clinics are paid for by taxes but who didn't pay for it? The ones who got the big tax breaks or the middle class who are using it now to subsidize their loss in income.
The middle class is taking care of the middle class and the poor because the middle class is becoming the poor and we have been paying for it. So I don't want to hear and whining from the rich who haven't paid for the last 10 years about how they are getting screwed and the system is so unfair to them now because they need to pay their dues just like everyone else.
It isn't just the "filthy" rich that will be affected by this. Do you own stocks? Do they pay divendeds? Do you have money in the bank that earns dividends? Those dividends will now be taxed at a higher rate.
No I don't. However, how many people are making over 200,000 in dividends?
I do though they don't amount to much and I don't make 200,000 a year with dividends or otherwise, I do have to pay taxes on them and on any capital gains if by some freak chance I am able to earn a profit in a stock transaction these days. All of those "earnings" are taxed, right now it's 15% when the Bush tax cuts exp[ire it will be 20%. Is it going to break me? No but I'll have that much less to spend, and as it is right now there is no incentive to save either. We already earn nothing and anything we do earn is going to be taxed more. This doesn't inspire confidence in the economy. Maybe I'll start buying gold and burying it in my yard.
Gold is a good choice. I think copper is also a good choice.
in all reality, there needs to be reductions in spending. MASSIVE cuts in spending.
And to follow through, lower tax rates DO help out - people tend to start new businesses and do many good things if they have lower taxes - you cut the rates, but you get more money because more people are spending.
The filthy rich will never pay taxes. The filthy rich are filthy because they own politicians on both sides of the aisle. Any taxes they pay will come back in through the back door.
The law makes no distinction between taxes on "fifthly" rich and punishing people for working hard and finally being successful. The only difference is hard working successful people don't try to cheat and buy off politicians and regulators. So, the politicians and their less than honorable sponsors point to the "fifthly" rich and snicker when they get elected to "stick it to them"... the politicians get rich, and the "filthy" rich get filthier.
Meanwhile, honest hardworking successful people in the same income bracket are being stuck because they don't own any politicians.
The difference is the hard working people who finally make it are beaten down ... by voting people who want to punish "filthy" rich.
The politicians and their filthy rich sponsors are laughing at this fight... er discussion. Because I guarantee you they don't care about you, your kids or your great grand kids. They have an election to win so they can take our taxes and give it to their friends.
Do you honestly trust anybody, republican or democrat to use the tax money the way the promise to get elected?
I just now saw the thread, and yes, I would pay my taxes.
Dude, it's only been three hours.
Yeah, I'd pay my taxes.
Nope, I would spend that money in the marketplace and create wealth for someone other than government.
I am in favor of replacing income tax with sales tax. That way you aren't taxed on the money you earn, but only on the money you actually spend.
Still an imperfect system.
Sorry to say, but that's a bad idea; unless you happen to like regressive taxation?
Sales tax does not HAVe to be regressive. It can exclude necessities and be focused on luxuries. It can be indexed to inflation so, for example, rent or mortgage of X is not taxable but a larger amount is.
Many state sales taxes are structured that way, though seldom indexed, unfortunately.
I am a liberal. I just didn't notice this thread before today, sorry.
Yes, I would pay taxes voluntarily. I do that now on part of my income, because it comes as cash and never even reaches my bank account. I report it just the same and pay taxes on it.
So the obvious answer is yes.
Let us not forget, Obama and the democrats have passed legislation that represents trillions in NEW spending, that's trillions with a "T"... and all that new spending, larger government, new entitlements, has to be paid for somehow, sooo what ever the level of taxes now, even if the Bush tax cuts are suspended, will not be near enough, and indeed, all that new legislation contains billions more in NEW taxes.
It doesn't matter how much money you pay the government, it's never going to be enough. Just wait until Obama's new fiscal responsibility commission delivers it's report (after the 2010 elections)calling for a new VAT tax to cut the deficit. For the first time not only will we be paying taxes on our income we'll be paying federal taxes on our spending we already pay state taxes for most goods.
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