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Open Thread #261

You didn’t build that, bro.

  • Sr Noob

    Could have been first, but I had nothing to say.

  • brier

    Last day of summer or first day of autumn depending on one’s perspective. Sun passes the equator for the equinox at 23:49 today.

  • babotaengi

    Can’t it be both?

  • numberoneoppa

    Anybody excited for the upcoming Windows Phone 8 devices?

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    You didn’t build that, bro.

    It’s not my job to care about you damn dirty non-tax payer, bro.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    On the 47%, it was shocking for me to discover that when I was in high school, the equivalent portion of Americans was 12%. In 1986, only 12% of Americans did not pay Federal income taxes.

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    Hey, Bro., let’s look at what the President actually said:

    “Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

    Look, Bro., a generous reading of the pronoun “that” doesn’t take its referent as “business.”

    The President was referring to the word “that” itself. You didn’t invent the word “that” — nor, by implication, did you ever construct an entire language, without which no business could ever have succeeded!

    You see, Bro., the President’s words were perfectly reasonable, and I just can’t understand why everybody so badly misconstrues the President’s clear meaning.

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    On the 47%, it was shocking for me to discover that when I was in high school, the equivalent portion of Americans was 12%. In 1986, only 12% of Americans did not pay Federal income taxes.

    I thought Republicans were in favor of less taxes? Make up your mind!

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    I’m not a Republican. I’m left with no choice but to vote Republican. Anyway, the ideal tax system to me would be a flat tax where everyone — and I do mean everyone — pays the same flat rate on income. Among tax reformers, this is known as lowering the rate but broadening the base. That way, everyone has the same skin in the game with respect to both spending and taxation.

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    Among tax reformers, this is known as lowering the rate but broadening the base.

    Among people with heart, this is known as cutting the legs underneath the poor.

  • bumfromkorea

    @thekorean

    Also known as “벼룩의 간을 내어 먹는다”.

  • RolyPoly

    I am a Democrat but if I make a lot of money this year from stock market I may turn 180 degree and join the Republican party.

    What works for me is what I need to support.

    No ideology.

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    @12 according to an online calculator, I would save more than $10K in taxes under the Romney administration. Still thought it was not enough money for me to vote for Romney.

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    Recently had a chat with a Korean friend who spent a lot of time abroad. He wanted Park Geun-hye to win because he cared deeply about women’s rights in Korea. I spent some time trying to explain the deep chasm between PGH and his values, but ultimately had to resort to secretly hoping that he will be out of the country for the election.

  • numberoneoppa

    The tax bracket system as it is now is actually not bad. The problem? Not enough people paying taxes and too many temporary cuts (currently) on the high end of the scale.

    Taxes are good. Without them, the only certainty would be death. Also, I like roads, and schools, and other *social* benefits.

  • Yu Bum Suk

    Here’s a great account of last week’s Mannam / cult event in Seoul: http://www.daehanmindecline.com/2012/20120916.html

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    Thanks, YBS. The show looks to have been visually impressive, sort of like North Korea’s ‘Are We Wrong’ spectacle.

    I’m glad I didn’t go — I might have converted . . .

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • jk641

    Taxes are bad.
    The government wastes so much of the tax money.
    The bigger the government, the greater the waste.

    Moral values are more important than government.
    If people are good, you hardly need a government.
    If people worship money, no matter the type of government, you’ll have tons of problems.
    People need to worship something other than money.
    People need to be more selfless.

  • r.rac

    read this in the ny times this week

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/17/sports/families-continue-to-heal-30-years-after-title-bout-between-ray-mancini-and-duk-koo-kim.html?pagewanted=all

    great article about the life of Kim Duk-koo, the fight in 1982, the fallout and Ray meeting Kim’s son who was born after he died. some great writing. can’t believe its been 30 years

  • Ladron

    I expected something to be posted this week about Russia wiping out 90% of North Korea’s debt ($10 billion).

  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani

    Ok then, I will post it.

    Whilst North Korea is threatening to “wipe out” South Korea, Russia has agreed to “wipe out” 90% of the Norths debt.

    Russia has agreed to write off nearly all of the $11bn debt accrued by North Korea during Soviet times as the Kremlin seeks to boost ties with its reclusive neighbour’s new leader, Kim Jong-un.

    Russia will “forgive” 90% of the debt and reinvest $1bn as part of a debt-for-aid plan to develop energy, health care and educational projects in North Korea, Sergei Storchak, Russia’s deputy finance minister, told state media on Tuesday. The debt deal was reached on Monday, he said.

    The agreement came following years of hard wrangling over Pyongyang’s Soviet-era debt, a factor that hindered further investment in the strategically located state.

    Negotiations were revived after Dmitry Medvedev, the former president, who is now prime minister, met North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-il, father of Kim Jong-un, in Siberia last summer on one of the reclusive leader’s last foreign trips. The elder Kim died in December. His son is being closely watched for signs that will open up the impoverished nation.

    “This is an important serious step that will ease and expand the possibilities for further economic and trade co-operation,” said Alexander Vorontsov, a North Korea expert at the Russian Academy of Sciences, who served at Moscow’s embassy in Pyongyang at the turn of the century. Storchak visited the country in May.

    Vorontsov said the debt deal was a sign the North Korean leadership was evolving. “This shows that the intelligentsia and leadership in North Korea are adapting to a market economy – with, by the way, Russia’s help,” he said. “It’s also a sign of political will from Russia.”

    The deal comes as Moscow looks to boost its economic presence in Asia amid falling demand from the crisis-hit economies of the west. Analysts said infrastructure investments, including rail and electricity, would probably form the bulk of Russia’s re-investment in the country.

    The deal announcement came on the heels of Moscow’s hosting of an Asia-Pacific economic summit in the far eastern city of Vladivostok that highlighted Russia’s turn eastward. The Kremlin has said it hopes to double the share of its total exports going to the Asia-Pacific region.

    Vorontsov said: “The development of the Asia-Pacific region is in our economic interests. If before, we talked about our potential to direct our oil and gas there when we needed to strengthen our negotiating position with the Europeans, now there are practical deals.

    “Russia’s turn to east Asia, especially in the spheres of infrastructure and energy, means the importance of the Korean peninsula will only grow.”

    He said the debt deal would pave the way for Russian plans to build a gas pipeline to South Korea via the north, which Kim Jong-il preliminarily signed on to during his meeting with Medvedev last summer.

    Few analysts see the deal as realistic, however, as the two Koreas technically remain in a state of war.

  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani

    At the very end of Psy’s “official” Gangnam style video clip – it states “Part One” on the sign above him.

    Is he going to release a Part Two?

  • jkitchstk

    “You didn’t build that, bro.”

    Backwards thinking aye. Which open thread did you get that from?

    “47% of Americans Don’t Matter” ~ I’m Mitt Romney and I approve of this message!

    “Mitt Romney’s mother, speaking in a 1962 film produced for George Romney’s gubernatorial campaign, says that Mitt Romney’s father “was on relief, relief welfare” in the early years of his life, but that “this great country gave him opportunities.”
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/09/19/1133810/-Mitt-Romney-s-dad-was-on-welfare
    Jon Stewart: “Oh my God. George Romney was on welfare. So according to Mitt Romney’s own logic, Mitt Romney could not win the vote of his dad.”

    # 14,
    “I spent some time trying to explain the deep chasm between PGH and his values…,”

    If only most Koreans thought he, I mean she was a man, it might win.

  • TheKorean2

    Mitt Romney is LMB of America.

  • keith

    ^ come on LMB isn’t that bad.

  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani

    The USA wants all your info –

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Utah_Data_Center

  • jkitchstk

    A video clip of this weeks SNL shown on Thursday night and it can even be seen in S. Korea. Includes an MP3 audio file as well…
    ‘Saturday Night Live Uses Thursday Night Special To Call Mitt Romney Racist’
    The show opened with a skit depicting the hosts of FNC’s Fox and Friends and proceeded to show 4 fake scenes of Romney.
    Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/jeffrey-meyer/2012/09/21/saturday-night-live-uses-thursday-night-special-call-mitt-romney-raci#ixzz27BfB72mA
    The first was a recreation of a Mitt Romney fundraiser in May where the actor Jason Sudeikis portrayed Romney as a bigot, revealing his racism behind closed doors:

    So you have this 47 percent that don’t pay taxes, and these people are never going to vote for me. And when I talk about these people who don’t pay taxes, I don’t mean senior citizens. All right? And I don’t mean members of our armed services. And I don’t mean southern whites. Okay? What I mean is — and real quick — no one is recording this, correct? No? Okay. It’s very important that no one records this. Okay. Good. Because I’m about to say who these people are, and I would prefer to not have that on tape. Sorry, sir, is that a camera on the table pointing right at me? Okay. Great. Alright, now, when I say “these people,” I mean black people.

    SNL then mocked Romney’s wealth, doubling day on the Romney’s-a-racist shtick in a skit where Sudeikis and Kate McKinnon (playing Ann Romney) compete in the Discovery Channel’s Cash Cab:

    ROBINSON: The first question is the Hotel California, you can check in but you can never –

    SUDEIKIS: Trust the staff with your valuables.

    KATE MCKINNON (AS ANN ROMNEY) That’s true of any hotel.

    SUDEIKIS: But it’s especially true in California, aka North Mexico. And if you don’t mind, could you wire my winnings to the Cayman Islands? We do that for tax purposes to pay less.

    The final skit in the opening segment was an awkward scene of Sudeikis singing a racist song while in the shower, with the following lyrics:

    Oh, poor people hate having jobs. Oh poor people hate having jobs. The only thing the poor hate more than condoms is waking up and going to a job.

    At the end of the segment, SNL worked in a birther joke, making one wonder if MSNBC’s Chris Matthews is an honorary joke writer now.

    While MSNBC seriously pushes the meme that the GOP is chock full of racist birthers who loathe lower-income earners, SNL is trying to sell the same message through comedy.

  • jkitchstk

    Romney’s 47 % ers statement is a lie says Politfact. If your going to lie you should at least make it worthwhile. Romney’s lie backfired and essentially lost it for him. That’ll teach all them liars out there!
    ‘The “48, 49 percent” that supports President Barack Obama are “people who pay no income tax.”
    http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2012/sep/18/mitt-romney/mitt-romney-says-voters-who-support-barack-obama-a/
    “…That qualifier is important. While the 46 percent figure refers to federal income tax, federal income tax is not the only tax that Americans pay. It’s not even the only federal tax people pay. An additional 28 percent will at least pay federal payroll taxes, which funds Social Security and Medicare and is deducted from every working American’s paycheck. Most of the rest are the poor and elderly.
    So, Romney would have been right if he said about 47 percent of all Americans don’t pay federal income taxes. But he went further, arguing that those 47 percent of Americans who don’t pay federal income taxes are essentially all Obama supporters. And the facts don’t back him up.”

  • feld_dog

    from Paul Krguman’s NYTimes column yesterday:

    Eric Cantor, House Majority Leader tweets on Labor Day: “Today, we celebrate those who have taken a risk, worked hard, built a business and earned their own success.” Yes, on a day set aside to honor workers, all Mr. Cantor could bring himself to do was praise their bosses. . . Lest you think that this was just a personal slip, consider Mr. Romney’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention. What did he have to say about American workers? Actually, nothing: the words “worker” or “workers” never passed his lips. . . And when Mr. Romney waxed rhapsodic about the opportunities America offered to immigrants, he declared that they came in pursuit of “freedom to build a business.” What about those who came here not to found businesses, but simply to make an honest living? Not worth mentioning.

    It’s clear–Romney and the right wing base despise ordinary working folks.

  • thedrew

    Was reading this, but the link to the NK site is blocked. Are all NK sites blocked?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/21/world/asia/gangnam-style-video-gets-north-korean-propaganda-treatment.html?_r=0

  • guitard

    r.rac wrote:

    read this in the ny times this week

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/17/sports/families-continue-to-heal-30-years-after-title-bout-between-ray-mancini-and-duk-koo-kim.html?pagewanted=all

    great article about the life of Kim Duk-koo, the fight in 1982, the fallout and Ray meeting Kim’s son who was born after he died. some great writing. can’t believe its been 30 years

    This is a good documentary about Mancini and much of it is related to the Kim Duk Koo fight and aftermath.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-HQycb5fp8

  • Railwaycharm

    Someone once told me not to worry, the American people are not stupid, the pendulum will swing the other way. I hope that guy has a vision that is not apparent to me at this moment. The left-biased media, the class warfare, the lies, and the people who will seemingly loose their free ride if Obie is run off. I do not see fire-in-the-belly action from Romney.
    If this is election goes to Obie, we are finished.
    All you English teachers hiding-out in your hagwon furnished digs will be affected. Vote, Vote,Vote!

  • http://www.busanhaps.com Bobby McGill

    If you didn’t make it out to Korea Burn, Brent Sheffield has some great photos of it on Haps:

    http://www.busanhaps.com/article/photos-looking-back-korea-burn-2012

  • silver surfer

    @6 Brendon

    47% too poor to pay income tax. Record profits for the multi-billionaires at the top.

    Coincidence?

    And btw why is your name spelt wrong?

  • silver surfer

    Why is it so difficult for people to remember the correct spelling of ‘lose’? Bunch of loosers.

  • Drowned before the ship sank

    Thanks Bobby, more proof that the Korean government is doing the right thing getting rid of foreign teachers. Speaking of loosers…

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    Loose women. Lose women. Spelling’s irrelevant to me since I only had luck with the latter . . .

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • Arghaeri

    Surely you don’t need luck with the former :-)

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    I guess just the luck to come across them.

  • Arghaeri

    ㅋㅋㅋ LOL

  • http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/ jefferyhodges

    Loose women quickly sized me up as a “nice guy,” i.e., a “loser.”

    (At least, they sized me up . . .)

    Jeffery Hodges

    * * *

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #6 Brendon Carr: “Anyway, the ideal tax system to me would be a flat tax where everyone — and I do mean everyone — pays the same flat rate on income. Among tax reformers, this is known as lowering the rate but broadening the base. That way, everyone has the same skin in the game with respect to both spending and taxation.”

    So, walk me through this Counselor. Do you think that a young, say 34 year old widowed single mother of five who works a service job around her children’s schooling schedule should pay tax at the same rate as, say an international corporate lawyer?

    Let’s use a 10% number for the flat-tax rate for simplicity because I am rumored to be yet another humble, nameless, no-account, Engrish teacher, who has difficulty outside his presumed Elizabethan poetry major and has only recently learned to move the decimal point after several hours of youtube and Kahn Academy videos.

    Let’s further assume some incomes. Again for simplicity, the international corporate lawyer makes $100,000 per year and the aforementioned widowed mother makes $10,000 per year at her Mc job at McDonalds, which she does to pay the electric and maybe shoe her children.

    After much head scratching and using my fingers and toes, I calculate that the mother pays $1,000 per year in income tax and the international corporate lawyer pays $10,000 per year in income tax.

    Now I ask you Counselor, do you, in your higher ability to reason, find that equitable?

    (BTW, I hope you don’t object to what might appear to be a hypothetical question in your world. I am certain that in a country of 316,000,000 people that I can find said mother and international corporate lawyer.)

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Your definition of “fair” apparently cannot accommodate the idea of treating people equally.

  • Arghaeri

    Isn’t the international lawyer paying ten times asuch as the single mum on your math, seems he’s pulling his weight. :-)

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #43 Brendon Carr: “Your definition of ‘fair’ apparently cannot accommodate the idea of treating people equally.”

    OK, I’ll bite: Is the goal equal treatment or equitable treatment? Should the goal of government in collecting taxes solely be the collection of the necessary revenue?

    For that matter, I can easily argue that the mother pays a higher percentage of her income in taxes than the corporate lawyer when other taxes are taken into account. Even more compelling, I can argue that the widowed mother of five values the $1,000 dollars she pays in income tax more than the corporate lawyer values the $10,000 dollars he pays in income tax.

    Finally, I can (quite successfully, mind you) argue that the international corporate lawyer values the benefits of his proportionally paid income tax proportionally more than the widowed mother of five. Put simply: the lawyer values the services bought by his tax dollars more than the widowed mother.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Hey, if one assumes a diversity of opinion on what is “equitable”, wouldn’t it be a good idea to try equal instead? At least that is objective and measurable.

    P.S., I’m hard-pressed to think of what services, other than passport renewal, I have received from the US government since 1997.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    I grant you that your definition of equal is easy, but that definition flies in the face of what most people have for their sense of equitable.

    Of course, as a purported poetry major, I think in similes. I hear parents, even more than taxpayers and congressional constituents, toss around the term “equal” in terms of their children. They claim that they treat all their children equally. The problem arises when one of the children needs dialysis or a kidney transplant. “Geez punkin’, we’d like to, but we didn’t do it for your brother. So the answer will have to be ‘no’. On the payer side, parents don’t say to their children, “you’re twice as old or twice the weight therefore we expect twice the value in family chores from you.” Nor do they say for that matter, “my 13 year old son is one child and takes up one bunk in the ol’ family bunkhouse, same as our 2 year old son, so we expect the same in taxes … err chores from them.” Parents have a sense of equability rather than equality.

    I recognize that arguments by analogy are only so strong as the situations are similar. Therefore, I would be more than happy (read: champing at the bit) to debate with you about the merits of any one of the statements that I have made.

    PS: I will take the leap and assume that you have been outside the U.S. since 1997. Even with that assumption, I suggest that you need to think a bit harder about the benefits you have received even as an ex-pat American citizen.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    46 Brendon Carr: “Hey, if one assumes a diversity of opinion on what is “equitable”, wouldn’t it be a good idea to try equal instead? At least that is objective and measurable.”

    BTW, your definition of “equitable” is included in that assumed “diversity of opinions.” That definition also happens to be rejected by anyone with any memories of Econ 101 from freshman year. People also bandy about head taxes, which are such easy targets that proponents seek shelter under the shield of strict flat taxes. Still the pull of the mass at that end of the spectrum sways the hybrid-proportional system we have today.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Well, Mr. Engrish Teecha, answer me this: If there’s a guy who has some property that belongs to him which he doesn’t want to give to you, and you take it from him under threat of violence because (i) you want it and (ii) there are more of you than there are of him, how is that distinguishable from a robbery?

    Because I’m not sure how to philosophically reconcile progressive income taxation with equal protection of law and private property rights.

    I mean, sure, We all voted on it! and all, but it’s like asking a pack of wolves and a lamb to vote on what’s for dinner.

  • gbnhj

    Anon. Joe, I’d guess that an annual income of $10,000 for a family of six would qualify for governmental aid that would, in all liklihood, outpace the mother’s tax burden. She’s well below the poverty level, after all. The lawyer, on the other hand, would not. Assuming (since the example calls for a flat rate, with the incomes already set) that neither party can work any tax avoidance magic after this point, the highly-fertile low-earning mother may come out relatively further ahead, no?

  • JW

    But that’s like saying people who are born in North Korea ought to suffer and die from starvation, simply because they had the crap luck to be born in North Korea. Brendon Carr and a few other heartless people might think that’s OK, but not the vast majority of other Americans, past and present. Thank God.

  • Arghaeri

    For that matter, I can easily argue that the mother pays a higher percentage of her income in taxes than the corporate lawyer when other taxes are taken into account

    Um, no. You quite clearly set the parameters as a 10% flat tax. now you’re moving the goalposts.

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    And how much of your income do you tithe for the relief of the hunger of North Koreans, err, Kim Jung Un and family?

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    That was for Suoer H Mart

  • Arghaeri

    P.S., I’m hard-pressed to think of what services, other than passport renewal, I have received from the US government since 1997.

    I strongly suspect that you US citizens pay a direct renewal fee fir that, so we can leave that out of the equation.

  • Arghaeri

    Finally, I can (quite successfully, mind you) argue that the international corporate lawyer values the benefits of his proportionally paid income tax proportionally more than the widowed mother of five. Put simply: the lawyer values the services bought by his tax dollars more than the widowed mother.

    That just seems perverse, the rich lawyer whose probably paying his own healthcare, pension provisions, and also probably not relying on public transport, public schools, public sports and community facilities. Isn’t on social or food stamps etc etc

    is gonna appreciate all the services he doesn’t use far more than the mother who relies on them to survive. thats a thoroughly counter intuitive statement.

  • hacker

    Brendon Carr @46 – I’m with you on the services to a point since I remember paying the government for those services along with the wasted time with their so-called appointment system. I pay my portion of taxes but do my best to make sure it is as little as possible.

    Anonymous_Joe @47 – Please educate me, what benefits do you believe I, as an expat, get from the US Government? I have to pay for all services rendered at the Embassy, I am harrassed everytime I return to the US, I’m put on endless hold if I ever have a question, just to mention a few of the things I don’t get. I miss the days when I arrived and was greeted with a “Welcome Home”.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #49 Brendon Carr: “Well, Mr. Engrish Teecha, answer me this: If there’s a guy who has some property that belongs to him which he doesn’t want to give to you, and you take it from him under threat of violence because (i) you want it and (ii) there are more of you than there are of him, how is that distinguishable from a robbery?

    Because I’m not sure how to philosophically reconcile progressive income taxation with equal protection of law and private property rights.”

    Attorney Carr, I never said that I was an English teacher; you did. Although I can see how you could so easily leap to such a conclusion with my obvious command of grammar and syntax and agility in turning a phrase. I remember that you once used the Engrishee teacher epithet as a device to discredit my arguments. I believe that you attorneys (ahem) object to such counter-arguments as ad hominem.

    …which leads me to another fallacy. Perhaps you missed today’s colloquium on argumentation by analogy, but the argument is only so strong as the situations are similar. The situation that you so pedestrianly paint would also rule out your fixed income tax rate by your same argument, and that leaves you with a government with no tax revenue.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Um, no. You quite clearly set the parameters as a 10% flat tax. now you’re moving the goalposts.

    Employee contribution to Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance (OASDI; “Social Security”) is 4.2% of the first US$110,100 of earned income, which means that in Anonymous_Joe’s scenario the high-flying US$100,000 corporate lawyer would pay at the exact same rate as the single mom. But what the demagogues don’t get is, if this lawyer’s a partner of his firm, or a solo practitioner, the poor sucker also gets to pay the employer-side contribution of 6.2% of that same US$110,100 of earned income — which means the lawyer is paying more. Almost 150% more. Oops! This is applicable to all small businesses.

    Anyway, I don’t think Social Security can survive as it’s currently structured, and don’t propose that the current OASDI system be maintained. Herman Cain was on to something: America needs to re-think its entire tax system.

    I propose we start by reexamining the progressive assumption All Your Shit Are Belong To Us, which assumption undergirds all the nonsense about “giving tax breaks to millionaires and billionaires” (how disingenuous this is, to lump the corner dry cleaner in with Warren Buffett!). It’s perverse that refraining from taking is dressed up as “giving” something to them.

  • Arghaeri

    Attorney Carr, I never said that I was an English teacher; you did

    No he followed your for arguments sake “assumed” parameters,

    Let’s use a 10% number for the flat-tax rate for simplicity because I am rumored to be yet another humble, nameless, no-account, Engrish teacher

    Yet again you’re moving the goalposts.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #52 Arghaeri: “Um, no. You quite clearly set the parameters as a 10% flat tax. now you’re moving the goalposts.”

    Under a fixed income tax rate system, there are still other taxes that must be paid. For example, the widow mother of five can work in the same building as the lawyer and travel the same toll road. They both pay the same same toll, but the widow mother paid a higher percentage of her income for the tax.

    “That just seems perverse, the rich lawyer whose probably paying his own healthcare, pension provisions, and also probably not relying on public transport, public schools, public sports and community facilities….. thats a thoroughly counter intuitive statement.

    There are many other taxes that are inherently regressive including sales taxes and real estate property taxes. For the sales tax, the lawyer buys more and pays more, but he is likely to have saving and not consume 100% of his income. Savings are not taxed, and the lawyer will pay a lower percentage of his income in taxes. In the case of property taxes, rich have bigger better, more expensive houses and pay more in taxes on their property. Bill Gates pays more in tax on his uber-Xanadu house but has a negligible proportion of his income in his house as opposed to typical working and middle class earners who typically have 90% of their assets in their homes.

    Finally, although the rich lawyer might not use public transportation, (thus creating an even larger burden on society with his SUV) but he values national defense much more than the working mother and the public roads themselves. If the NorKs (ha, ha, ha, I know… but we’re in fantasy argument land here) take over the U.S., the rich lose everything, the widow mother probably wouldn’t notice any difference in her wealth, income, lifestyle, or possessions. As for that publicly built highway, the rich lawyer values it more because he gets more out of it on his way to work.

    Rather than collect tax revenue by income, why not charge by value to the taxpayer? Clearly Bill Gates values a highway more, and proportionally more, than the widow mother of five.

  • gbnhj

    Again, under the model you created, the under-employed mother of five will qualify for financial benefits greater than her tax payment, while the lawyer will not. In what way is she burdened by the system?

  • Jashin Densetsu

    taxing income at a uniform rate isn’t fair bro. it’s subsidizing wealth at the expense of trying to increase wealth. if you want a fair tax, there should be no tax on income or any kind of economic activity like sales, investment, cap gains, etc. there should just be a single tax on net assets above a basic level of subsistence that’s charged as a fee for the service of providing property rights.

  • dww

    P.S., I’m hard-pressed to think of what services, other than passport renewal, I have received from the US government since 1997.

    Does the protection of you and your family by the US military count?

  • jkitchstk

    In 2011, Romney made $14 million while being unemployed

    Compare Romney to a single mother of two who works full-time at Wal-Mart, who takes the Earned Income Tax Credit and whose children get health insurance through Medicaid. Romney says she’s not taking personal responsibility. He says he couldn’t get her to take personal responsibility if he tried. And yet, Romney is someone who doesn’t even have to take personal responsibility for earning money anymore. He’s beyond all that.
    Romney’s situation is wonderful. It’s the dream. And he worked to achieve it. I have no qualms about any of that. But his riches have come with a lack of empathy for what it’s like to be poor, or even just not-rich. He’s taken the fact that he’s rich as an indictment of the work ethic of people who aren’t. And he’s carried that belief into his policy proposals. His policy platform matches his comments: He won’t raise taxes on the rich, but he wants to cut Medicaid by over a trillion dollars in the next decade.”
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/wp/2012/09/21/in-2011-romney-made-14-million-while-being-unemployed/
    “If you haven’t done so already, read Brad’s summary of Mitt Romney’s 2011 tax returns. Done? Okay. Then here are a few points on Mitt Romney’s 2011 taxes, from least-to-most serious.
    1
    2
    3
    4. The focus on Romney’s tax returns is on how much he pays. But look at the other side of the ledger: how much he makes. In 2011, Romney earned $14 million. But as Romney himself joked in 2011, he was unemployed that year. So he made $14 million without even having a job.
    That money, of course, all came from investments. But Romney didn’t even manage those investments. Someone else took charge of the decisions. Romney basically made $14 million in 2011 — putting him way, way above the top 1 percent, which starts at around $350,000 a year — because Romney was very rich in 2010, too. That’s the nice thing bout being rich: It makes you richer. “

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    there should just be a single tax on net assets above a basic level of subsistence that’s charged as a fee for the service of providing property rights.

    Keep fucking that chicken, bro.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #60 Arghaeri: “No he followed your for arguments sake “assumed” parameters,

    It’s an old beef.

    I believe you posted before my explanation, but he once used his “yet another anonymous English teacher argument” to dismiss mine. I had never said what I do; he assumed. I now enjoy tweaking him by preemptively stipulating to being of low moral character, not very interesting, bad dancing, poor dressing, gay, commie, draft dodging, wife beating, low IQ, alcoholic, red-headed step child who lives in his mother’s basement and most damning of all could even be an English teacher (although I’ve never said). I just want him to focus on the point at hand.

    Simply, I think that he tries to run rough-shod with his “I’m an international corporate lawyer and you’re not” reason for arguments to steam roll debate with anyone who dares to disagree or question his authority on subject matters not strictly limited to and including law. I’ve read too many other posters who are afraid to cross and even kow-towing to him, and I think that stifles honest debate.

    I don’t believe in flaming posters who make honest mistakes or display reasonable gaps in knowledge in their posts. No, he hasn’t done that to me, but he has simply dismissed my arguments by stating that he need not reply to another anonymous English teacher (or words to that effect). The Korean idiom for his line of argumentation goes “I went to Seoul National University, and you went to…; therefore, I’m right.”

    Frankly, I respect that he puts what I assume is his real name out there. Sometimes I think that he does it is stunningly stupid, but I appreciate the philosophical consistency that goes with that. I know that he’s a long time poster here (and on other sites), and he might be jaded after many years. Yet I am more civil under as an anonymous handle (c’mon “Anonymous_Joe”) as I could think of than he is under his real name. If he came off the high horse, he might actually learn something someday.

    I have no problem with flaming (or ignoring) idiot posters, and I love playing along with kayfabe posters who can pull off facetious posts and extend them without breaking character, but the eau de condescension that wafts off his is noisome.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #64 dww:

    “P.S., I’m hard-pressed to think of what services, other than passport renewal, I have received from the US government since 1997.

    Does the protection of you and your family by the US military count?

    You beat me to it. Does he realize that he has a country to go back to and that the U.S. military has guaranteed that?

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Absolutely ridiculous, Anonymous_Joe. Climb down off your cross and explain for us how a progressive tax system is distinguishable from robbery. ‘Cause you haven’t addressed that yet, nor have you taken any notice of the gaping hole in your $100,000 lawyer Social Security tax argument.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    69 Brendon Carr: “Absolutely ridiculous, Anonymous_Joe. Climb down off your cross and explain for us how a progressive tax system is distinguishable from robbery.”

    The robbery analogy was yours, Counselor, and I rejected the analogy as being too dissimilar. Allow me to shoot one immediate hole into it: the “victim” in your analogy receives services in return; the victim of robbery receives no such services unless you stretch lightening his load to service. The situations are too dissimilar. Did you miss that day in Logic 101?

    Perhaps you can answer how your analogy then does not apply to a fixed income tax rate system too. It’s your analogy, explain to me how (what you perceive as a strong comparison) does not apply to a fixed income tax rate system.

    T

  • hacker

    DWW – You throw protection out there as an all-encompassing thing. Narrow that down to the costs of that protection. We spend nearly 5% of our GDP on that protection, that is 711B dollars, nearly 5x more than the #2 country China. Our military also is plagued by excessive waste, in terms of dollars, has an irreconcilable accounting system, per Robert Gates “bureaucratic habits and lax attitude towards costs are increasingly divorced from the real threats of today”. We could do it better, spend more efficiently, and reduce the costs of that protection. Right now I am paying too much for the service I receive, which has, on occasion, put me at more risk than it has protected me.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #69 Brendon Carr: “Absolutely ridiculous, Anonymous_Joe. Climb down off your cross….”

    I don’t know what cross your talking about or what metaphor your mixing.

    #69 Brendon Carr: “nor have you taken any notice of the gaping hole in your $100,000 lawyer Social Security tax argument.”

    There is no gaping hole and what you perceive lack of notice, I take as my duties to my real life.

    Nonetheless, for your edification, counselor, all I have to do is change the numbers to a lawyer earning $250,000 per year and for giggles and grins, let’s make the poor hardworking mother earn $50,000. (My hypothetical situation math has markedly improved.) Now she pays more under your scenario. Also, let’s make her a small business owner since you promoted the corporate attorney to partner. Now she pays much, much more.

    But we can even go back to the original. Who really pays the FICA contribution? Is it the employer or employee? I know what the law says, but the FICA contribution is figured in the initial wage calculation when she was first hired.

  • JW

    If there’s a guy who has some property that belongs to him which he doesn’t want to give to you, and you take it from him under threat of violence because (i) you want it and (ii) there are more of you than there are of him, how is that distinguishable from a robbery?

    Because I’m not sure how to philosophically reconcile progressive income taxation with equal protection of law and private property rights.

    Brendon, you’ve keep yellowing THEFT THEFT! but you’ve made a huge disingenuous leap in logic here. Your definition in the first paragraph would mean that ALL taxation is theft, and yet in your second paragraph you’re claiming that only progressive taxation is theft. Why is only progressive taxation theft? You have to go back to arguments based on fairness, which gets us back to the fundamental question of, how is it fair if we live in a system where some people benefit much much more than others simply by being lucky?

  • JW

    Oops .. yellowing = yelling

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    Savings are not taxed

    Really? This is just perverse, and demonstrates just how insanely far the “All your stuff are belong to us” mentality has gone. Savings of course are what’s left over after taxes on income (and other taxes) [as well as living expenses] have already been paid. Why should savings themselves again be subject to tax (as distinct from any income earned thereon? Do you really want to discourage savings? Where is George Orwell when you need him?

  • Anonymous_Joe

    71 hacker: “DWW – You throw protection out there as an all-encompassing thing. Narrow that down to the costs of that protection.”

    hacker, I believe that DWW’s point was that BC claimed to have received no benefits from the U.S. Gov’t since 1997 beyond passport renewal services. You are arguing that military protection is not good value for the money not that there is no value in it.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    75 Sperwer: “Savings are not taxed”

    Really? This is just perverse, and demonstrates just how insanely far the “All your stuff are belong to us” mentality has gone.

    Mr. Sperwer, if you are referencing one of my posts in this thread, then you need to reread it more carefully. I did not advocate for the taxation of savings. I meant to at least imply that the mother spends 100% of her income on goods, some of which are taxed. If the corporate attorney buys goods and pays a consumption tax on those goods, then the presumed existence of his savings implies that he has paid a lower total tax rate than the mother.

    (BTW, I have no idea what your reference to Orwell is meant as a comment on my post, even as I think you understood my post. Perhaps you should reread Orwell more carefully also ;-) )

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    I did infer that you advocated a tax on savings, because that after all is the logical implication of your position. If it’s not what you intended, then you should think out your position more carefully.

    Given your position, even only as you have made it explicit, It doesn’t surprise me that you wouldn’t understand the reference to Orwell.

  • hacker

    72 Anonymous-joe. Your right on my value for dollar but at the same time I can see Brandon’s point as well. Living overseas, working for another country, I don’t see protection as a benefit but rather a duty. I certainly don’t be fit from the schools, the roads, the welfare, or any of the other social program’s for which I am paying while residing overseas.

    On your post in 72, I was curious about your FICA tax reference so I went to the SSA and plugged in your numbers. Assuming they are not both small business owners but regular joes the costs as a flat tax rate would appear to to be levied at an equal rate but the return on that tax, assuming it is still in existence, is greater for the 50k as the lawyer would be paying double the contribution but only receiving 1/3 more.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    The fictitious mother in your scenario will spend 300% of her income on goods, because she will receive income support under current policy. How can you argue that she’s done any sort of disservice?

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    Living overseas, working for another country, I don’t see protection as a benefit but rather a duty. I certainly don’t be fit from the schools, the roads, the welfare, or any of the other social program’s for which I am paying while residing overseas.

    But you do get a hefty exclusion of foreign-source income from US taxation and a credit for any foreign taxes you pay. If that exclusion nevertheless is diminished by the tax you pay in your domiciliary jurisdiction, and the credit doesn’t cover all your US taxes because of a rate mismatch, that’s a result your free choice of domicile; if it’s so burdensome and so lacking in benefit, you can always renounce your citizenship. ;)

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    Meanwhile, as someone else has pointed out, you also do have a bolthole to go to if the shit hits the fan and you can get out of Dodge fast enough.

  • Railwaycharm

    The UK tried this type of bullshit back in the 70′s. Who remembers the tax exiles?

  • hacker

    Well sperwer, I choose not to renounce my US Citizenship but rather prefer to exercise my right as a US Citizen to voice my displeasure of the way my paid taxes, starts at a min. of 25% btw and I proudly take any legal deduction allowed, are spent. That my innocent one is the duty of every US citizen. As for your second knee jerk comment about the bolt hole to run to if the so called shit hits the fan…. Well I may or may not be able to get out of dodge fast enough. I have earned my right to question how my government is run and how it’s spends what I pay, can you say the same?

  • RolyPoly

    Brendon Carr,

    Your kind is the ones who will stand on the welfare line first when they become poor – the ones who cry most to get those benefits when they get poor.

    Economic plight will change one’s view about these things.

    I hope you get sued for malpractice and become dirt poor , only to subsist on so-called Social Security alone. You will be singing different tune.

  • RolyPoly

    If you are top 1% of the US who own 50% of assets then you should be like Brendon crying about the poor are not paying “fair share”.

    However, if you are not among that top 1% and singing the same tune as Brendon, then you are just plain STUPID.

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    Well, Hacker, if all I thought citizenship was worth is the oppty to spout off in frustration for the price of six figures+ a year in taxes, i probably would change my citizenship; after all i get to do that here in the MH for free. Meanwhile you go right on thinking you’re a great American for speaking out so courageously, if only in your own mind.

  • YangachiBastardo

    Genius doesn’t even begin to describe it:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=myRRxWBSrY8&feature=related

  • gbnhj

    What’s that – the mother of five is eligible for economic assistance in excess of her tax, and so actually comes out ahead? Wish I’d thought of that. Heck, I wish I’d thought of that twice. Careful, though: next thing you know, Anon. Joe might increase the woman’s earnings to cover for that obvious problem with his argument.

  • Arghaeri

    Under a fixed income tax rate system, there are still other taxes that must be paid

    Actually no, the fact that there are does not mean there have to be. And a toll is arguably not a tax, in many cases such tolls are from private companies not the state, and are a rental charge for use of property built by same.

    Secondly mum with 10,000 a year is going to be on the bus and not payinv the fee, and the lawyer is going back an forth to numerous meetings etc so is paying the fee multiple time.

    So again your both moving the goalposts of your scenario and its parameters, and throwing in really poor anologies into the bargain.

  • hacker

    Well sperwer that is my right after all and don’t you worry one little bit about my poor little mind or how courageous you may not think I am. I will exercise my right here soon enough. Your idea of citizenship and mine are very different. Having not been raised in “merica, love it or leave it” Texas I know that I can be a citizen and not agree with the collective hive, that I can voice my opinion, and that I can complain about what I don’t agree with and seek change. I want change from waste, change from indiscriminate spending, change from the attitude that somehow the government needs to redistribute what I have worked for and I most certainly do not live in your fairie tale world where everything is just fine which in case you haven’t noticed it is not.

  • jk641

    Chris Christie for president!

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    How’d that go again? Oh yes: From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs. Obama 2012!

  • jk641

    Obama said that he can’t change Washington from the inside, he has to do it from the outside.
    He wants to talk to the American public more, and have them change Washington.

    Yeah, that worked real well.
    During the 2011 debt ceiling crisis, he asked the American public to call up their legislators and urge them to agree on something.
    Did it work? No. The crisis dragged on forever.

    Basically, Obama has admitted that he’s a weak leader.

  • Jashin Densetsu

    carr,

    keep fucking the closet cases that dominate the GOP bro.

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    Hacker, wow so many presumptive slurs. Just for the record: i’m not from Texas and i happen to think there’s more than a lot wrong with our country that’s far more serious than what whingeing expats pay in taxes.

  • Jashin Densetsu

    Climb down off your cross and explain for us how a progressive tax system is distinguishable from robbery.

    explain how taxing income instead of charging a fee for the service of providing property rights isn’t robbery bro.

  • Arghaeri

    But that’s like saying people who are born in North Korea ought to suffer and die from starvation, simply because they had the crap luck to be born in North Korea.

    No its not, thats where charity and compassion come in, not taking from others to pay for unknown people half way acroos the world.

    In any case since I doubt you are making any meaningful contribution to starving north koreans thru your taxes its rather a moot point.

  • Arghaeri

    It’s an old beef

    OK but is it necessary to bring it into an orherwise interesting discussion.

    I personally for example have no problem with progressive taxes within reasonable limits, I have become acclimatised to them at much higher levels than are a discussion here.

    I just don’t find your arguments for same to be terribly convincing. My acceptance is mostly on a pragmatic realpolitik level, and compassionate grounds, just as I can question the extent to which human rights are applied, whislt being extremely unconfortable with say the the death penalty.

  • Arghaeri

    I’ve read too many other posters who are afraid to cross and even kow-towing to him, and I think that stifles honest debate.

    Certainly he’s unbending, but I can’t say I’ve noticed any significant kowtowing particularly with regard to politics where he is regularly lambasted for his extreme views.

  • Jashin Densetsu

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-19/let-s-end-the-47-nonpayer-nonsense.html

    “Mitt Romney may have killed his campaign by saying that President Barack Obama’s base is the 47 percent of Americans who are freeloading, non-income-tax-paying losers. With any luck, he also killed the stupid Republican talking point about “nonpayers.”

    Tax collections at all levels of government will total about $4 trillion this year. Of that, just $1.1 trillion will come from the federal income tax, which is by far the most progressive major component of the tax system.

    So, when Republicans complain about “nonpayers,” they’re only talking about one-quarter of the whole tax system. Worse, it’s a quarter of the tax system that is hugely unrepresentative of our tax system as a whole. Why would you look at only one piece of the tax code to figure out who is a “maker” and who is a “taker”?

    Payroll taxes will raise more than $900 billion this year. And payroll taxes are regressive — about two-thirds of people who don’t pay income tax do pay payroll tax, and they pay at a higher average rate than wealthy people do. State and local taxes, which will total about $1.4 trillion, also tend to be much less progressive than the federal income tax.

    This is why we exclude so many people from the federal income tax: It’s a way to offset the regressivity of other taxes and achieve a desirable level of progressivity in the tax code as a whole.”

  • Arghaeri

    If the corporate attorney buys goods and pays a consumption tax on those goods, then the presumed existence of his savings implies that he has paid a lower total tax rate than the mother.

    The consumption tax is normally a percentage of the goods purchased therefore it cannot differentiate on rate. Further on some many juridictions consumption tax is not placed on staples/necessities therefore the 10,000 dollar woman is pribably paying very little in consumption taxes as against the lawyer who is making a considerably larger contribution through purchasing his house, car, rolex etc..

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Certainly he’s unbending, but I can’t say I’ve noticed any significant kowtowing particularly with regard to politics where he is regularly lambasted for his extreme views.

    “Extreme views”? My only issue is government spending and fiscal balance. I don’t have a philosophical objection to welfare per se, but I do think it’s an extravagance America can’t afford.

  • Wedge

    All anyone needs to know about taxes is right here in this parable:

    http://www.texasrainmaker.com/2010/12/06/bar-stool-economics-a-tax-lesson/

  • Jashin Densetsu

    progressive income taxes are a fraud. they don’t tax the rich. a high income doesn’t necessarily mean you’re “rich”. you can have a high income and be poor. progressive income taxes are a ruse to trick people into thinking that they’re taxing the rich, while not actually taxing the rich.

    income taxes should be zero across the board. there should be no taxes on any economic actions to increase wealth. that means no taxes on income, sales, cap gains, etc. the only tax should be a fee for the gov’t’s service of providing property rights.

  • jkitchstk

    “but I do think it’s an extravagance America can’t afford.”

    Based on what, the debt republicans got us into after two non-taxed wars and the billions(almost 1 trillion per year counting everything) we spend on fighting terrorism(Homeland Security) and Defense Spending?
    ” the money we spend(on welfare) is not out of line with other advanced countries. In fact, we spend a smaller percent of our GDP than almost any other country.” – Bill Clinton

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Advanced countries? You mean, all the countries which are now experiencing 15-20% unemployment, contracting GDP, imploding industrial production, and social unrest because the money they spend on welfare has run out?

    Advanced isn’t always positive. For example, who wants an advanced case of stomach cancer? ‘Cause that’s sort of what Slick Willy’s advocating.

  • Jashin Densetsu

    bill clinton is a slimeball. him and his power mad dyke wife need to disappear.

  • Jashin Densetsu

    http://arkancide.com/

    “Arkancide is the unfortunate habit of potential witnesses to the Clintons’ dirty dealings in Arkansas suddenly deciding to shoot themselves twice in the back of the head. Police and Coroners in Arkansas, notably Fahmy Malak who answered to Governor Bill Clinton, automatically described these shootings as “suicides.””

  • YangachiBastardo

    Secondly mum with 10,000 a year is going to be on the bus and not payinv the fee, and the lawyer is going back an forth to numerous meetings etc so is paying the fee multiple time.

    Secondly if you’re such a bum you should maybe avoid breeding as this planet is not exactly lacking in human presence.

    I’m sick and tired of having to support other people kids.

    Mitt and his 47% comment was just spot on, probably the first and last time he ever spoke the truth

  • YangachiBastardo

    yep and Brendon is right and before the lib brigade start chirping with their “Northern Europe, Germany, Scandinavia blal blah” let’s look at some facts:

    Germany had a stagnant economy for 10 years, they started recovering significantly when they introduced their Hartz 4 package of reforms. Currently the country has some of the most widening income and wealth gap in Europe, some of the highest flexibility in the workforce, no minimum wage and a huge amount of low-paid workers. In fact Germany pulled out of their multi-year slump exactly when they went hypercapitalist:

    http://gulfnews.com/business/economy/working-poor-darker-side-of-germany-s-jobs-miracle-1.977923

    Scandinavia on the other hand has vast natural resources, tiny populations and very high taxes. Their economies are tilted toward a mostly intra-Europe export sector, prone to take brutal hits when the cycle is down (see 2009 data).

    In order to mantain their (kinda low, see ACEA car sales data http://www.acea.be/images/uploads/files/20120918_PRPC-FINAL-1208_2.pdf) level of consumption people have racked up enormous amounts of private debts, fueling real estate bubbles here and there:

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-22/denmark-s-record-private-debt-load-triggers-central-bank-warning.html

    If in your world this is a sterling economy, well good luck

    PS

    Look at the car sales data: Finland and oil-rich Norway barely reach the same level, ona per capita basis, than PIIGS Italy… in our worst year since the 1960′s

  • jkitchstk

    107,
    Nice deflection, point being it’s “in line with” other countries and the U.S. isn’t at 15-20 and neither is all of the other top OECD countries. On the other hand the U.S. Defense Spending Dwarfs Rest Of The World. TEA BAGGERS NEED TO KNOW!

    #110,
    “Mitt and his 47% comment was just spot on,”
    Wrong! See comment #28

  • YangachiBastardo

    On the other hand the U.S. Defense Spending Dwarfs Rest Of The World. TEA BAGGERS NEED TO KNOW!

    Huh ? In aworld rife with Somali pirates, BRIC bullies going nuke , Arab springs going nuts et al i’m more than happy to spend my cash for defense, actualy imho the total budget should be even increased.
    Way, way more productive expenses than most of welfare insanity.

    I’d like to remind you that a well-trained, technologically advanced defence sector is what guarantee Western interests security, including maritime routes, oil&gas pipes etc etc.

    I consider shameful that Europe doesn’t pay her fair share and saddle America with so many expenses, you have every right to be pissed off over this

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    The United States has been “at war” with poverty since 1960. Are poor people better off after 50 years of massive income transfers? Federal transfer payments now consume 15% of GDP. You’d think we’d have vanished poverty at that rate. Yet it seems the poverty rate remains the same, even after all that “help”. I know, let’s do the exact same thing, only more of it!

    There are 161 Federal activities related to housing assistance. If only we had a 162d, “super” agency on the case, everything would be great.

  • eujin

    Hey, Bro., let’s look at what the President actually said:

    “Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”

    Look, Bro., a generous reading of the pronoun “that” doesn’t take its referent as “business.”

    “Bro” means “bridge” in Scandinavian. I think you underestimate just how many levels our multilingual counselor is working on here. Apart from a rogue comma, added for comedic effect, his OP is factually correct and appears to be referring in part to some Scandinavian bridge. There are a lot of expensive bridges in Scandinavia, funded by their extremely progressive taxation systems, and moves afoot to build another one.

    Just say no, to that, bro.

  • jkitchstk

    Again, you deflect so it’s now obvious that you need to watch this…TEA BAGGERS NEED TO KNOW!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JF_X-sTCrnU

    The 60′s brought equal rights, is that what you’re mad about?
    The House That I Live In – Sundance Film Festival
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a0atL1HSwi8

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    The United States has been “at war” with poverty since 1960. Are poor people better off after 50 years of massive income transfers? Federal transfer payments now consume 15% of GDP. You’d think we’d have vanished poverty at that rate. Yet it seems the poverty rate remains the same, even after all that “help”. I know, let’s do the exact same thing, only more of it!

    There are 161 Federal activities related to housing assistance. If only we had a 162d, “super” agency on the case, everything would be great.

    I’d be more concerned about the middle class than the poor (who’s lot hasn’t changed much and probably never will) – especially since consumer spending represents 70% of your average economy, and the middle class are the big spenders. Back in the 60s the US was the most egalitarian nation in the world. How things have changed.

    I agree with you that welfare spending ought to be cut, but given the endless erosion of the middle class, the endless banging on by GOP hacks about Dem “wealth redistribution” and “transfer payments” from top to bottom would be funny if it wasn’t so obscene. Wealth has been going one way – up – for 50 years.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    *whose* lot

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    “Vanished” poverty! Oy. Apple’s autocorrect is sometimes awful. I wrote “vanquished” and failed to notice the helpful correction. Man…

  • Arghaeri

    “Extreme views”?

    OK counsellor, please accept my deepest kowtow as I remorsefully withdraw the offending word “extreme” from my hasty and ill thought out remark :-)

  • YangachiBastardo

    I’d be more concerned about the middle class than the poor (who’s lot hasn’t changed much and probably never will) – especially since consumer spending represents 70% of your average economy, and the middle class are the big spenders. Back in the 60s the US was the most egalitarian nation in the world. How things have changed

    hoju: yes you’re correct in pointing out the shrinking middle-class as a worrying phenomenon. I suspect tough this has more to do with the enormous gains in productivity and automation of the last decades than the rise of right-wing ideology.

    The relentless race against the machine has destroyed millions and millions of relatively well-paid jobs, with no viable alternative…other than fueling asset bubbles to keep an illusion of prosperity.

    Even social-democrat Scandinavia has witnessed a huge growth in the chasm between the rich and the poor (from a very low base indeed), due to the technological investments that allowed the local economies to massively recover from the early 90′s doldrums

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    I agree with you that welfare spending ought to be cut, but given the endless erosion of the middle class, the endless banging on by GOP hacks about Dem “wealth redistribution” and “transfer payments” from top to bottom would be funny if it wasn’t so obscene. Wealth has been going one way – up – for 50 years.

    Do you consider that it might be possible that money sloshing around to various parties through the agency of the government might be a contributing factor?

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Yangachi,

    I completely agree with everything you said, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable for the top bracket to pay more tax, so long as that tax money is invested (i.e., in infrastructure, broadband etc – shit that helps the economy and creates middle class jobs). Automation and productivity has led to less working class jobs and more liquidity for shareholders. Makes sense to me that that liquidity should be trickled back down by way of tax investments in middle-class industry.

    It’s not just Buffet that thinks 15% for billionaires isn’t enough – 61% of his peers agree.

    And I’m a business owner and employer, I don’t have any sympathy for able-bodied people on welfare, or single mums with 5 kids, or any other leg-up for people who won’t help themselves, so I’m on the same page as Carr and yourself when it comes to welfare. I just think the state can actually play a good role in greasing the wheels of the economy, so long as it’s not done wastefully.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    Do you consider that it might be possible that money sloshing around to various parties through the agency of the government might be a contributing factor?

    In some cases yes, in others no. Government waste (welfare) is bad, government investment (infrastructure, education) is good.

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Well, gosh, too bad all our money’s going to waste, then.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    (and of course there are caveats – by education I mean in shit that leads to productive workers. Spain is a good example of bad government education investment. Every man, girl and dog as a liberal arts degree and the country has 25% unemployment. White Elephant building projects are also pretty useless. But good stimulus at the right time is worthwhile IMHO.)

  • JW

    The United States has been “at war” with poverty since 1960. Are poor people better off after 50 years of massive income transfers? Federal transfer payments now consume 15% of GDP. You’d think we’d have vanished poverty at that rate. Yet it seems the poverty rate remains the same, even after all that “help”. I know, let’s do the exact same thing, only more of it!

    A cursory reading about this issue in the internet would reveal that Brendon Carr, YET AGAIN, is peddling a lie. It is well known that the methodology used to measure poverty is outdated and simply incorrect, if only for the reason that the measure does NOT take into consideration government transfer programs, you know, such things like the food stamp program. In effect, the method used to measure poverty BY DEFINITION precludes the reflection of progress made by the welfare programs against poverty. Brendon Carr, when is the last time you’ve gotten your facts straight?

    http://www.slate.com/articles/business/moneybox/2012/09/winning_the_war_on_poverty_new_research_says_government_anti_poverty_programs_are_more_effective_than_you_realize_.html

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Hey, if we’ve made such progress, maybe it’s time for a peace dividend.

    Of course, that presumes that one credits anything written by Matthew Yglesias with any accuracy. I sure as hell don’t. That guy’s a shrill liar. But if you want to rely on Yglesias’ declaration of victory, I’ll take it. Time to demobilize, right?

    Unless you just want to have it both ways.

    Also, I’d like to recommend that you do more than a cursory reading in sources like Yglesias. Widen your horizons, mate.

  • JW

    Of course, as if right on cue, Brendon Carr attacks the character of the source, instead of the argument that’s proposed. A pitiful showing for a lawyer, Brendon Carr. Wait no, that kind of makes sense, actually.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    78 Sperwer: “I did infer that you advocated a tax on savings, because that after all is the logical implication of your position. If it’s not what you intended, then you should think out your position more carefully.”

    As you stated, you inferred it. Just because you inferred it does not mean that I implied it. Nonetheless, I will state my position explicitly: I do not advocate a tax on savings.

    “Given your position, even only as you have made it explicit, It doesn’t surprise me that you wouldn’t understand the reference to Orwell.”

    You don’t understand my position or Orwell. I suggest that you explicitly (and succinctly) state what you think Orwell and Orwellian mean. (I am reminded of a scene from Annie Hall and also wish that life could be so easy.)

  • Anonymous_Joe

    89 gbnhj: “What’s that – the mother of five is eligible for economic assistance in excess of her tax, and so actually comes out ahead? Wish I’d thought of that. Heck, I wish I’d thought of that twice. Careful, though: next thing you know, Anon. Joe might increase the woman’s earnings to cover for that obvious problem with his argument.”

    There is nothing fallacious about increasing the numbers if you see that as an “obvious problem” with my argument.

    The real problem is that we are arguing a hypothetical, and I simply chose simplistic numbers to dramatize my point. (Also, you don’t know about her eligibility for such assistance based solely on her income.) Regardless, changing the numbers in no way diminishes my argument.

    Although I do not feel any need to change the numbers because we (or at least I am willing to) pay a price for being civilized. If you want to hold me to the numbers let’s charge taxes by benefit. The hypothetical attorney values national defense significantly, and not simply proportionally or income tax progressively, more than the widowed mother of five. The attorney loses his property in a revolution or take-over. The widowed mother of five has no property to lose.

    (BTW, you should be warned about inferring too much about my political philosophy or positions; you’ll likely get them wrong.)

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #90 Arghaeri September 24, 2012 at 8:26 am

    Under a fixed income tax rate system, there are still other taxes that must be paid

    Actually no, the fact that there are does not mean there have to be. And a toll is arguably not a tax, in many cases such tolls are from private companies not the state, and are a rental charge for use of property built by same.

    You can argue that one until you’re blue in the face. Let’s simply restrict this to public interstates then. I simply used that as an example of a tax that people do not pay in proportion to their incomes. The gas tax is another example. Corporate attorney has a bigger car and uses more gas in his bigger car, but I doubt that a typical $100K earner uses 10 times more gas than the typical $10K earner. Therefore, the $10K earner is paying proportionally more in federal gasoline taxes.

    Secondly mum with 10,000 a year is going to be on the bus and not payinv the fee, and the lawyer is going back an forth to numerous meetings etc so is paying the fee multiple time.

    How do you know that?

    So again your both moving the goalposts of your scenario and its parameters, and throwing in really poor anologies into the bargain.

    That’s just weak. I will summarize my point simply: we have a sense of “fairness” and “justness”, and that sense tells most of us that the more a people make or have, the more they should pay to support the necessary (I don’t want to diverge into a debate of what’s necessary) system.

    I’m sure that we could find some nuts who think that a head tax is the fairest tax out there. The head tax certainly has the redeeming qualities of simplicity and ease of collection, but you’d be hard pressed to find anyone of any credibility who would seriously advocate it.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #102 Arghaeri: “The consumption tax is normally a percentage of the goods purchased therefore it cannot differentiate on rate. Further on some many juridictions consumption tax is not placed on staples/necessities therefore the 10,000 dollar woman is pribably paying very little in consumption taxes as against the lawyer who is making a considerably larger contribution through purchasing his house, car, rolex etc..”

    I am sure that in a country of 316,000,000 people, you can find aberrant cases. Nonetheless, economic research shows that sales taxes are among the most regressive of taxes.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    110 YangachiBastardo: “Secondly if you’re such a bum you should maybe avoid breeding as this planet is not exactly lacking in human presence.

    I’m sick and tired of having to support other people kids.”

    Yeah, I hate when American servicemen get themselves killed and leave widowed mothers of five. I hate even cops, firemen, and careless victims of drunk driving accidents even more.

  • gbnhj

    Sorry, but you proposed a model in which a single widow, mother of five, earns USD10,000 per year. ‘Changing the numbers’ most definitely changes things.

    By the way, you’ve got me completely worried now about inferring too much about you, so consider me warned. Rest assured, I won’t be doing anything like that.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936
  • slim

    If you read the article, it is analysts who have a lot to answer for @136.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Hey JW,

    Romney finally releases his 2011 tax returns:

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/DC-Decoder/2012/0921/Yes-he-s-rich.-Mitt-Romney-finally-releases-his-tax-returns

    Nobody can find anything wrong. You mad bro?

    Red herring. Plain and simple.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    slim,

    Irrational expectations, or as the former Fed Chairman had once said, “Irrational exuberance.”

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Oh, well. Just more for BMW and Mercedes.

    http://in.reuters.com/article/2012/09/24/toyotamotorcorp-production-nikkei-idINL4E8KO6YW20120924

    This… makes absolutely no sense.

  • JW

    Wangkon,

    I’m a little surprised that you’re not aware of what’s going on here. It’s the tax returns BEFORE 2010 that are important, and that was the demand being made by democrats all along, because it was in 2009 that the tax amnesty was granted to swiss account holding tax evaders. So if he released his 2009 returns we would know, but he decided to release only a “summary” of it, behavior which is itself highly suspect. Why just a summary?

  • Arghaeri

    Arghaeri

    Actually no, the fact that there are does not mean there have to be. And a toll is arguably not a tax, in many cases such tolls are from private companies not the state, and are a rental charge for use of property built by same.

    Anonymous persons

    You can argue that one until you’re blue in the face. Let’s simply restrict this to public interstates then. I simply used that as an example of a tax that people do not pay in proportion to their incomes

    Actually, you completly avoided the point, you had cganged the parameters by introducing other taxes and I noted that such other taxes need not be introduced.

    I do not need to argue this till I’m blue in the face, sunce I have lived in countries whicjh with rare exceptions do not have tolls on highways, and even in the isolated exception alternate highways exist.

    Further you ignore the fact that the average 10,000 mum can’t afford to run a car, unless its on those benefits she’s receiving, and accordingly if she is on the highway she’s on a bus and not paying those tolls or fuel taxes.

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    JW,

    You won’t be satisfied until dirt is uncovered. The fact that there isn’t any dirt doesn’t dissuade you or others like you. Odd parallel to those who asked for Obama’s birth certificate.

  • JW

    Absurd apples to oranges nonsense Wangkon. Obama himself is demanding that Romney release his pre 2010 tax returns. Go join the idiot line along with Brendon Carr.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2012/09/24/obama-ad-attacks-romney-on-taxes-secret-video/

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    …because it was in 2009 that the tax amnesty was granted to swiss account holding tax evaders.

    The 2009 amnesty related to disclosure of hitherto unreported bank accounts, not evasion of taxes. If Romney had been evading taxes until 2009 we’d surely have heard about it before now.

  • JW

    The 2009 amnesty related to disclosure of hitherto unreported bank accounts, not evasion of taxes.

    What does this mean? I have no idea what you’re saying. Are you saying that the IRS didn’t engage in this amnesty program without the intention of going after tax offenders? If that’s the case I’d have you say you are seriously delusional or lying, yet again.

    If Romney had been evading taxes until 2009 we’d surely have heard about it before now.

    How would people find out, if the hidden accounts, were in fact, hidden, until 2009? You know what hidden means, don’t you? Hidden means that people don’t know.

  • dogbertt

    How would people find out, if the hidden accounts, were in fact, hidden, until 2009? You know what hidden means, don’t you? Hidden means that people don’t know.

    Because foreign banks will soon have to report their existence to the U.S. government.

  • JW

    Dogbertt, I’m sorry, I’m not at your level of intelligence to deduce what you’re saying. Are you saying that Swiss banks, who are known for their tight security of their accounts, would be likely to expose Romney’s tax offenses to the public, because of the threats made by US Justice Dept?

    Here’s some more thoughts to chew on, courtesy of a professor of law at USC.

    The first is Romney’s Swiss bank account. Most presidential candidates don’t think it appropriate to bet that the U.S. dollar will lose value by speculating in Swiss Francs, which is basically the rationale offered by the trustee of Romney’s “blind” trust for opening this account. What’s more, if you really want just to speculate on foreign currencies, you don’t need a Swiss bank account to do so.
    The Swiss bank account raises tax compliance questions, too.
    The account seems to have been closed early in 2010, but was the income in fact reported on earlier tax returns? Did the Romneys timely file the required disclosure forms to the Treasury Department (so-called FBAR reports)?
    The IRS announced in 2009 a partial tax amnesty for unreported foreign bank accounts, in light of the Justice Department’s criminal investigations involving several Swiss banks. To date, some 34,500 Americans have taken advantage of such amnesty programs. Did the Romneys avail themselves of any of these amnesty programs?

    http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/18/opinion/kleinbard-canellos-romney-tax/index.html

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    JW — Sure, the intent of attacking banking secrecy is to go after tax evaders. But not everyone establishes accounts in Switzerland or the Cayman Islands does so because of secrecy, just as not everyone with a “secret” account is a tax evader.

  • jkitchstk

    # 143,
    “You won’t be satisfied until dirt is uncovered.”

    The dirt has already been uncovered, it’s over WangKon936…
    ‘Battleground snapshot: Obama winning by bigger margins than four years ago’
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/09/21/1134842/-Battleground-snapshot-Obama-winning-by-bigger-margins-than-four-years-ago
    Obama 49.3
    Romney 43.8

    ‘Polls give Obama the edge in Pennsylvania’
    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/09/24/polls-give-obama-the-edge-in-pennsylvania/
    “A new CNN Poll of Polls of likely voters in Pennsylvania indicates President Barack Obama with a 49%-40% lead over Republican nominee Mitt Romney.”

    ‘Obama holds advantage in three swing states’
    http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/category/iowa/
    “A poll of voters in the key battleground states of Iowa, Colorado and Wisconsin released Thursday shows President Obama with an advantage over Republican nominee Mitt Romney.
    The NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist survey indicates Obama pulling ahead among likely voters by five points in both Wisconsin and Colorado with 50% to Romney’s 45%, a margin that is within the poll’s sampling error. But in Iowa the president holds an eight point lead with 50% to Romney’s 42%, which is outside the poll’s sampling error.”

    Even worse for Romney…
    The new state polls don’t reflect the full impact of this week’s firestorm over remarks Mr. Romney made at a private fundraiser where he disparaged nearly half the country as people who “see themselves as victims,” pay no federal income tax and feel entitled to federal benefits. The poll was conducted Sept. 16-18; a video of that fundraiser gained national media exposure Sept. 17.
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444165804578008662614263532.html?mod=googlenews_wsj

    Romney’s boy Paul Ryan(V.P. candidate) booed at AARP conference…
    http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=7422526n
    “Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., was booed Friday at the AARP convention in New Orleans for advocating the repeal of President Obama’s Affordable Care Act.”

    Romney and Ryan can’t even win their home states! ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ

  • JW

    Ok Brendon, but we’re right back to the question of, why only summaries and not the full returns, if he has nothing to hide? We already know he has lots of money in offshore accounts. We already know he has used various means of tax avoidance strategies in the past. What’s the problem?

    And is it possible that he had offshore unreported accounts that he didn’t WILLFULLY hide if they were in fact unreported? You must think Romney is a fucking idiot.

  • dogbertt

    Dogbertt, I’m sorry, I’m not at your level of intelligence to deduce what you’re saying. Are you saying that Swiss banks, who are known for their tight security of their accounts, would be likely to expose Romney’s tax offenses to the public, because of the threats made by US Justice Dept?

    I’m not referring specifically to Romney’s situation.

    Please to be reading:

    http://blogs.wsj.com/corruption-currents/2012/06/21/treasury-gets-japanese-and-swiss-banks-to-agree-on-fatca-compliance-method/

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    So I’m in the market for a new tablet. Apple is finished for me for good after another battle with iTunes resulted in me losing half my data and resetting the only apps I use for my business.

    Christ, all I want to do is drag and drop some video and photos onto my tablet to show clients. For this monumentally challenging task, Apple requires an upgrade of the worst piece of software in the history of the universe, further fills of up my hard-drive with Apple junk software like opera, erases whatever the fuck it chooses too, resets my windows defaults and makes me wait on it for an hour. And to add insult to injury it won’t allow me to load mpg video, just mp4 and other Apple fanboy codecs. Oh, and trying to figure out how to load the video and photos so my portfolio app can find them requires a degree from NASA. I finally managed to do it via dropbox (after another hour rendering new codecs), go figure.

    PIECE OF JUNK.

    How this company has lasted so long is beyond me, hopefully the map fiasco (what the fuck is wrong with google maps?) will start to sink the company and the day will come when I won’t have to look at a Mac again.

    I’m after an android and/or windows tablet that let’s me do what I want. Drag and drop isn’t too much to ask IMO.

    So any suggestions?

    /rant over

  • http://bcarr.com Brendon Carr

    Didn’t you post another rant just like this one last year? Seems to me the problem may be between the keyboard and the chair.

  • http://vmphotography.com.au hoju_saram

    It ain’t just me counsellor – you need to get out more if you’re unaware of the legions of people who despise iTunes. The very fact that an Apple hardware purchase requires me to install a memory-hogging application on my PC just to plug it in (and then tortures me with bandwidth-killing updates every time I use it) is cause enough to be annoyed. The actual dysfunction of the program itself simply adds insult to injury.

    And hey, I’m actually a huge fan of Apple hardware design. It’s a shame they’ve sacrificed usability in their quest for a locked-down ecosystem. Hats off to their shareholders – pity their non-fan-boy users.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    135 gbnhj: “Sorry, but you proposed a model in which a single widow, mother of five, earns USD10,000 per year. ‘Changing the numbers’ most definitely changes things.”

    I preferred to keep the model simple. Some(nameless)one promoted the hypothetical international corporate lawyer to partner in his law firm, and now the poor bastard has the additional burden of paying the employer’s side of FICA. My heart breaks for him. Now he gets to reallocate even more of his larger income into dividends and capital appreciation, and I had to rejigger my model.

    To the point: “changing the numbers” most definitely DOES not change things. You’ve lost the forest for the trees. My real point is that a working or middle class family values the purchasing power lost in paying the proportional income tax (in this hypothetical example 10%) more than the same family would value the purchasing power lost in paying 10 times more if the family made 10 times more.

    As an illustration, if a typical family of four that has, say, $50,000 dollars in income pays $5,000 dollars in income tax and Bill Gates who has, say $5,000,000,000 in income and pays $500,000,000 in income tax, then the proportional tax paid has effectively affected (my true calling could be Engrishee teacher) the typical family more than the tax paid by Bill Gates has affected him. The marginal $5,000 likely materially affects the typical family’s life. Bill Gates, down $500,000,000, probably still does not look at the right side of the menu at the local Applebee’s.

    Now normally, I would let things drop here and feel no need to provide contingency explanations. In a preemptive strike, I note that I am in no way implying that Bill Gates should pay income tax at a progressive rate to the point that his lost marginal utility is equal to that of the typical family’s. Please do not infer such.

    By the way, you’ve got me completely worried now about inferring too much about you, so consider me warned. Rest assured, I won’t be doing anything like that.

    I duly rest assured: It’s like it’s May 1, I can say “mission accomplished”, and I need not worry about eight more years in this quagmire.

  • Arghaeri

    How do you know that?

    Its called math and statistics, she’s on 10,000 a year and supporting five kids, so she can’t affird to buy and run a big car, unless she’s paying for it with benefits in which case she’s not paying the toll, the other taxpayers providing her income support are.

    Unless if course you’re now gonna change the game again by saying that your hypothetical widowed mum, received a million dollars in life insurance, and that where the statistics part comes in, cos statistically thats would be bullshit.

  • http://askakorean.blogspot.com thekorean

    I’m after an android and/or windows tablet that let’s me do what I want. Drag and drop isn’t too much to ask IMO. So any suggestions?

    Motorola Xyboard was alright, but mostly because I got to use it for free . . .

  • gbnhj

    You say I’ve lost the forest for the trees? Hardly. Your argument – which has merit – is nonetheless tempered by the fact that those earning below the federal poverty guidelines can be eligible for economic assistance. For 2012, the guideline for a six-person household is USD30,970 (or even higher for Alaska or Hawaii). Your example, however, provided this family with only USD10,000 in annual income.

    You’re right that I don’t know with certainty how much financial assistance would be available to this family. But that’s a weak line; neither do you. And, fact is, I’d willingly bet Robert’s whole hanbok collection that, for a family of six earning only 10,000 dollars a year, it would easily be more than a thousand. As a result, the woman in your example would be benefited more greatly than she would be taxed. That might not happen every time, but it would happen to the woman in your example.

    So quit arguing, and admit that the amount you initially proposed hobbled your example. Had you but given her a greater income, or a smaller family, or some combination of the two, the example wouldn’t have had the same problem. And that’s all I’ve got to say.

  • jk641

    hoju @#153,

    Have you tried FileApp?
    http://www.digidna.net/products/fileapp

  • jk641

    Actually, you still need to have iTunes installed on your computer.
    But with FileApp, you can move any file into iPad without going through iTunes.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    #159 gbnhj: You say I’ve lost the forest for the trees? Hardly. Your argument – which has merit – is nonetheless tempered by the fact that those earning below the federal poverty guidelines can be eligible for economic assistance. …You’re right that I don’t know with certainty how much financial assistance would be available to this family. …So quit arguing, and admit that the amount you initially proposed hobbled your example. Had you but given her a greater income, or a smaller family, or some combination of the two, the example wouldn’t have had the same problem. And that’s all I’ve got to say.”
    Isn’t that the very meaning of losing the forest for the trees?

    Very well, then…. If it helps you get past to see my real point that a flat-tax is, by most people’s senses or community standards, unfair, then I will chop down that example tree blocking your view so that you can see the forest.

  • numberoneoppa

    @Hoju_saram: Unless you need huge screen size, Nexus 7 + MX player will do the trick.

    Drag and drop to your heart’s content.

  • numberoneoppa

    I miss the threaded comments. :(

  • Railwaycharm

    http://stolenhistory.org/viral/

    Have a look at this site. You didn’t build that!!!!!

  • Railwaycharm

    I am not surprised the lib’s on this blog did not have the balls to address this!
    http://stolenhistory.org/viral/

  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Korean education #6!

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/the-most-educated-countries-in-the-world.html?page=2

    But education efficiency found wanting.

  • Q
  • http://www.xanga.com/wangkon936 WangKon936

    Whoa, that could throw the verdict out the door…