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9-9-9
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OAW
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Oct 14, 2011, 04:19 PM
 
So former Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain is the new frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination. At least for the moment. The hallmark of his campaign is his 9-9-9 plan. Mr. Cain discusses it here ....

Herman Cain: 9-9-9 is pro-growth, pro-jobs – USATODAY.com

The plan is criticized here ...

Editorial: Herman Cain's 9-9-9 doesn't add up – USATODAY.com

What says the PWL?

OAW
     
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Oct 14, 2011, 04:42 PM
 
I like 9-9-9, but I'd vote for Cain just to get free pizza

A president that makes good pizza is what this country needs.

-t
     
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Oct 14, 2011, 05:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
I like 9-9-9, but I'd vote for Cain just to get free pizza

A president that makes good pizza is what this country needs.

-t
For the life of me Big T ... I can't tell you the last time I've even seen a Godfather's Pizza ... let alone eaten one. They used to be pretty popular back in the day but they seemed to have pretty much disappeared around my way.

OAW
     
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Oct 14, 2011, 05:42 PM
 
They used to have restaurants here in Phoenix. There 520 according to their website.
Godfather's Pizza - A Pizza You Can't Refuse
¡Viva Cristo Rey!
     
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Oct 14, 2011, 06:13 PM
 
What about Santorum's 0-0-0 plan?
     
OAW  (op)
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Oct 14, 2011, 06:26 PM
 
As for the plan 9-9-9 plan itself, there are elements that I like and others that are atrocious. While I find a simplified tax code appealing ... this particular implementation is highly regressive. The wealthy get a massive windfall with the elimination of the capital gains tax (where most derive their income) and the lowering of the tax rate to 9% on their other income. The poor and the middle class get a massive tax increase with the imposition of a 9% federal sales tax on top of a 9% income tax. The 9% sales tax on corporate income (which is essentially a VAT) is intriguing and could potentially spur some level of economic growth. However, the ability to deduct purchases of goods and services from US companies and not foreign companies undoubtedly will result in the WTO finding the US in violation of some free trade provision. I think Bruce Bartlett, who was a senior policy advisor in both the Reagan and G.H.W. Bush Administrations, summed it up best with his analysis:

Because so little detail exists, it’s hard to do either a proper revenue estimate or distributional analysis of the Cain plan. It’s obvious, however, that Phase 1 would represent a huge tax cut for the wealthy at a time when federal revenues are at a historical low as a share of the gross domestic product and the economy’s fundamental problem is a lack of aggregate demand.

Thus the Cain plan would increase the budget deficit without doing anything to stimulate demand, because rich people can already spend as much as they want and are unlikely to spend more even if their taxes are abolished.

The poor and the middle class might increase their spending if they could keep more of their earnings, but they will unquestionably pay more under Phase 2 of the Cain plan. With no tax on capital gains, the rich would pay almost nothing, while elimination of all deductions and credits, as well as imposition of a national sales tax, must necessarily raise taxes on everyone else, especially those not now paying income taxes.

At a minimum, the Cain plan is a distributional monstrosity. The poor would pay more while the rich would have their taxes cut, with no guarantee that economic growth will increase and good reason to believe that the budget deficit will increase.

Even allowing for the poorly thought through promises routinely made on the campaign trail, Mr. Cain’s tax plan stands out as exceptionally ill conceived.
Bruce Bartlett: Inside the Cain Tax Plan - NYTimes.com

If anyone had any doubts that this plan was designed to benefit the very wealthy at the expense of the everyone else, just look at its call to eliminate the tax on capital gains.

"Within the wealthy, there is great diversity in how much of their money goes to taxes," said Roberton Williams, a senior fellow with the Tax Policy Center.

Still, the very wealthy are the most likely to reap the benefits of lower tax rates on capital gains and dividends.

"We estimate that nearly half of the benefits from the lower rates on gains and dividends goes to the top one-tenth of 1 percent of households," he said. That top one-tenth includes people with incomes of $2.3 million dollars a year or more.
PolitiFact | Does a secretary pay higher taxes than a millionaire?

I'm sorry ... but a dollar earned is a dollar earned is a dollar earned. Fundamental fairness would dictate that if you make 75K a year as a nine-to-fiver ... collecting stock dividends ... or flipping real estate ... the tax rate you pay shouldn't be dictated by HOW you get your hustle on. Why should Dirk Nowitzki pay a higher tax rate because he makes his millions as a salaried NBA player ... while his boss Mark Cuban pays a lower rate because he made his billions cashing out of Broadcast.com?

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Oct 14, 2011, 08:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by OAW View Post
So former Godfather's Pizza CEO Herman Cain is the new frontrunner for the GOP presidential nomination. At least for the moment. The hallmark of his campaign is his 9-9-9 plan. Mr. Cain discusses it here ....

Herman Cain: 9-9-9 is pro-growth, pro-jobs – USATODAY.com

The plan is criticized here ...

Editorial: Herman Cain's 9-9-9 doesn't add up – USATODAY.com

What says the PWL?

OAW
While Cain is my frontrunner as well and the criticisms fail to accept any appreciable market activity generated from the simplified, lower code; I think the 9-9-9 plan simply increases the opportunities to soak taxpayers as the government cannot be trusted to maintain that rate across the board. For that reason and several others including the fact that the President cannot legislate this plan from his own desk, it is not realistic. He'll need a lot of support that would not be forthcoming from either side of the aisle. I do appreciate it being a part of the tax discussion however.
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Oct 15, 2011, 01:14 AM
 
But if we turn this 9-9-9 plan on its head...

...OMG!
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 09:31 AM
 
Originally Posted by OAW View Post
As for the plan 9-9-9 plan itself, there are elements that I like and others that are atrocious. While I find a simplified tax code appealing ... this particular implementation is highly regressive. The wealthy get a massive windfall with the elimination of the capital gains tax (where most derive their income) and the lowering of the tax rate to 9% on their other income. The poor and the middle class get a massive tax increase with the imposition of a 9% federal sales tax on top of a 9% income tax. The 9% sales tax on corporate income (which is essentially a VAT) is intriguing and could potentially spur some level of economic growth. However, the ability to deduct purchases of goods and services from US companies and not foreign companies undoubtedly will result in the WTO finding the US in violation of some free trade provision. I think Bruce Bartlett, who was a senior policy advisor in both the Reagan and G.H.W. Bush Administrations, summed it up best with his analysis:
The difference is so fundamental as to be irreconcilable. The problem with Cain's plan is that it is speculative on what it believes is the best-suited system for human nature. There are others who would advocate a polar opposite idea, equally speculative on what it believes is the best-suited system for human nature.

Cain's plan, not unlike other flattened tax proposals, relies heavily upon the competitive landscape of the free market. That by pulling government out of the way, businesses will compete with one another not only in the quality of their wares, but in value; that a business must act within the public trust including a fair wage to compete for labor and prosper within the communities they serve. Anyone paying attention would have to acknowledge there are shady players no doubt, but advocates of a less intrusive government tax structure believe impropriety, while perhaps the most newsworthy, is not the prevailing condition. Even if it were, profit and survival would be the only consistent, effective motive for acting in the public's best interest. This means that you and I determine what businesses succeed or fail, not the government.

Otherwise, how is the elimination of a capital gains tax not beneficial to everyone? While many on the left are attempting to legislate their own moral principles of fairness, there's an "everyone else" that is paying nothing in taxes, legal residents or otherwise. The first thing any flattened tax will do is broaden the tax base. Of course, an elimination of capital gains taxes entices new prospects, bringing the middle class into the investment fold... I should qualify, more middle class.

PolitiFact | Does a secretary pay higher taxes than a millionaire?

I'm sorry ... but a dollar earned is a dollar earned is a dollar earned. Fundamental fairness would dictate that if you make 75K a year as a nine-to-fiver ... collecting stock dividends ... or flipping real estate ... the tax rate you pay shouldn't be dictated by HOW you get your hustle on. Why should Dirk Nowitzki pay a higher tax rate because he makes his millions as a salaried NBA player ... while his boss Mark Cuban pays a lower rate because he made his billions cashing out of Broadcast.com?

OAW
I disagree

The wealthy already pay more taxes - USA Today
There may be individual millionaires who pay taxes at rates lower than middle-income workers. In 2009, 1,470 households filed tax returns with incomes above $1 million yet paid no federal income tax, according to the Internal Revenue Service. But that's less than 1% of the nearly 237,000 returns with incomes above $1 million.
This year, households making more than $1 million will pay an average 29.1% of their income in federal taxes, including income taxes, payroll taxes and other taxes, according to the Tax Policy Center, a Washington think tank.
Households making between $50,000 and $75,000 will pay an average of 15% of their income in federal taxes.
Lower-income households will pay less. For example, households making between $40,000 and $50,000 will pay an average of 12.5% of their income in federal taxes. Households making between $20,000 and $30,000 will pay 5.7%.
The latest IRS figures are a few years older — and limited to federal income taxes — but show much the same thing. In 2009, taxpayers who made $1 million or more paid on average 24.4% of their income in federal income taxes, according to the IRS.
Those making $100,000 to $125,000 paid on average 9.9% in federal income taxes. Those making $50,000 to $60,000 paid an average of 6.3%.
This notion of fairness, albeit naive at the core, meaningless, and ignorant of the facts IMO, is only an attempt to shove its own moral values down the throats of the collective. As if a holder of public office isn't chomping cigars, staying in lavish establishments, $150 a meal, sipping fine wine, and capable of abusing the public trust in the most egregious manner imaginable with the legal authority to take your money; it makes sense that their mantra would include; "LOOK AT THEM!!!". Talk about unfair. Talk about above-the-law. Talk about abuse.

How do we tax them more and ensure they're paying their fair share?
ebuddy
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 10:43 AM
 
Ilike how there looking at the income reported in tax returns, s want someone to graph taxes paid by net assets. If all your investments are in tax free bonds then you won't be reporting any income so you won't show up in those numbers.
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 11:26 AM
 
Originally Posted by BLAZE_MkIV View Post
Ilike how there looking at the income reported in tax returns, s want someone to graph taxes paid by net assets. If all your investments are in tax free bonds then you won't be reporting any income so you won't show up in those numbers.
If fair is fair then you'd have to include all the holdings in 401ks that are exempt from capital gains taxes. Notwithstanding the fact that these tax-free bonds you're talking about are all issued by governments be it Federal, State, City, or County.
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Oct 15, 2011, 11:43 AM
 
I'm just catching up with this 9-9-9 thing, as I've been busy with other things. I came here intending to blast it because flat taxes tend to not bring in nearly as much revenue as their proponents anticipate. But then I found this:

Cain’s 9-9-9 Arithmetic Raises Revenue Generation Questions - Bloomberg

Using 2010 figures, Cain’s plan would have collected $922.1 billion in revenue from the national sales tax with no exemptions, $912.7 billion at a 9 percent individual income tax with few deductions or other tax benefits, and $127.7 billion from a 9 percent tax on U.S. corporate income with no deductions.
The federal government in 2010 actually collected $898.5 billion from individuals, including levies on capital gains; $191.4 billion from the corporate income tax; $864.8 billion from Social Security and retirement taxes; $141 billion in other taxes, such as estate and gift taxes; and $66 billion in excise taxes. This doesn’t include the taxes levied by states on retail sales and property.
The editorial says this means the math doesn't add up: I actually think it holds up pretty well. He's basically replacing payroll taxes with a consumption tax, and moving around other taxes to be revenue neutral, but simpler, relative to the current system. There are worse ideas out there! I think getting a flat-tax proposal to within 10% of the current system in terms of revenue is an achievement.

But, as Michelle would say, the devil is in the details. There is a lot made out of lowering the corporate tax rate to 9%, but Cain proposes that on gross profit, not net profit: the end result is that more business will end up paying taxes because many of their overhead expenses won't count against gross profit. It doesn't exactly seem pro-business to me; I'm not sure if that would ever get through Congress intact.

Lowering the personal tax rate to a flat 9% also sounds good, until you realize he's proposing eliminating virtually all deductions. This has an easier chance of happening, though, since deductions in general are coming under more scrutiny lately. There will be an overhaul of the tax code in the next few years, and there will be fewer deductions as a result of it.

I actually view the consumption tax as the most interesting part of his proposal. I had always considered a national sales tax DOA, because combined with State taxes it would push sales taxes to European levels. But taken in conjunction with eliminating the payroll tax, it makes sense: the poor would get hit hard, but the working poor would be getting more in their paycheck, anyway, without the payroll tax. This only really screws the non-working poor (and since when have Republicans cared about them?) Also, most State sales taxes have exemptions: start piling on exemptions on this tax and all of a sudden it can't replace the money form the payroll tax anymore.

In short, it's not as crazy as I thought. It turns a lot of sacred cows into hamburger, though, and pretty much needs to be passed intact to work: start allowing more deductions or changing the proposed corporate tax structure and it won't raise nearly enough revenue to cover even basic spending. But it's not the worst idea out there by far, and I'm surprised by that.

I'm always worried whenever people propose flat taxes from the Right, that their goal is really to intentionally slash revenues in order to manufacture a spending crisis. Am I just being paranoid?
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 01:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dork. View Post
I'm just catching up with this 9-9-9 thing, as I've been busy with other things. I came here intending to blast it because flat taxes tend to not bring in nearly as much revenue as their proponents anticipate. But then I found this:

Cain’s 9-9-9 Arithmetic Raises Revenue Generation Questions - Bloomberg

The editorial says this means the math doesn't add up: I actually think it holds up pretty well. He's basically replacing payroll taxes with a consumption tax, and moving around other taxes to be revenue neutral, but simpler, relative to the current system. There are worse ideas out there! I think getting a flat-tax proposal to within 10% of the current system in terms of revenue is an achievement.
For what it's worth to you, we're in total agreement here. What you've done that too many seem unwilling to do is maintain an open mind to the potential a flattened tax structure or in the least, a reduced payroll tax has. The problem is that it's optimistic in its speculation on what human behaviors it will drive. Others would immediately say greed!™ and they might be saying this while doing all they can to get more for themselves, including dodging their own "fair" share of taxes, or service to the community, whatever that is.

We simply have to ask ourselves what Cain has been asking us; "How's the current situation workin' out for ya?" The problem is the code is too complex. This is an idea for it. The problem is there is missing revenue from many sources. This is an idea to work at it. If fairness is truly important, this is a shot at it. Like you I don't think it stands a snowball's chance in hell of staying intact and it simply won't work unless it does, even by ramping it in over three phases as designed. I love having it in the discussion though.

But, as Michelle would say, the devil is in the details. There is a lot made out of lowering the corporate tax rate to 9%, but Cain proposes that on gross profit, not net profit: the end result is that more business will end up paying taxes because many of their overhead expenses won't count against gross profit. It doesn't exactly seem pro-business to me; I'm not sure if that would ever get through Congress intact.
This is true also and there are a great many in the business community who would oppose this structure for just this reason. They'll pay more. The difference is, they'll be paying exponentially less in tax planning and fulfillment. To the tune of over $48 billion less. Plus, a simplified code means it's less intimidating to be an entrepreneur; more "Joes" on the scene.

Lowering the personal tax rate to a flat 9% also sounds good, until you realize he's proposing eliminating virtually all deductions. This has an easier chance of happening, though, since deductions in general are coming under more scrutiny lately. There will be an overhaul of the tax code in the next few years, and there will be fewer deductions as a result of it.
Agreed. No matter what the policy, simplification is en vogue now which ultimately means fewer deductions.

I actually view the consumption tax as the most interesting part of his proposal. I had always considered a national sales tax DOA, because combined with State taxes it would push sales taxes to European levels. But taken in conjunction with eliminating the payroll tax, it makes sense: the poor would get hit hard, but the working poor would be getting more in their paycheck, anyway, without the payroll tax. This only really screws the non-working poor (and since when have Republicans cared about them?) Also, most State sales taxes have exemptions: start piling on exemptions on this tax and all of a sudden it can't replace the money form the payroll tax anymore.
It's the most interesting part to me too. And not only is the combination of Federal and State a caveat as you mention, but the idea of having three set of teeth at your veins. This certainly requires some, as yet substantiated faith that 9-9-9 won't simply become 5-13-9/6.3333333/18.7 in 5 years.

However, I think we have to move beyond the whole "and since when have Republicans cared about the non-working poor?" rhetoric. I've not once seen a proposal offered from Republicans that didn't address this class of people. Otherwise, it would be just as easy to say; "Since when have Democrats acknowledged that some reasons for being non-working poor have merit and some don't?" Cain attempts to address this with what are referred to as "empowerment zones". Empowerment zones allow a business to use deductions for the payroll of those employed in the zone and employees living and/or working in the zones get additional deductions. Ideally, this gives the free market engine a shot at addressing blighted areas over what has proven ineffective historically. The non-working poor aren't living amongst those of wealth. These zones and the associated monetary benefits go directly to where poverty and the non-working poor live. I'm a registered Republican and think this is the most important aspect of his plan.

In short, it's not as crazy as I thought. It turns a lot of sacred cows into hamburger, though, and pretty much needs to be passed intact to work: start allowing more deductions or changing the proposed corporate tax structure and it won't raise nearly enough revenue to cover even basic spending. But it's not the worst idea out there by far, and I'm surprised by that.

I'm always worried whenever people propose flat taxes from the Right, that their goal is really to intentionally slash revenues in order to manufacture a spending crisis. Am I just being paranoid?
Except that I don't think you can look at a $14 trillion debt and claim with a straight face that a spending crisis has to be manufactured by the right. In theory, it is not an evil conspiracy, it is an idea that expresses optimism in its speculation of how the simplified plan will interact with fundamental human behaviors resulting in a net-gain for all. For the most part I'd say your open-mindedness is unique considering your distrust for the right.
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Oct 15, 2011, 01:35 PM
 
Oh brother, not this flat tax pipe dream again.

Yes, because millionaires never just go down to best buy and buy one HDTV for their den, they automagically buy sixty of them. Because a person is rich, they automatically consume enough for 60 people. So becasue of this obvious rule of the universe, you'll collect 60x the consumption tax off of these spendthrift rich folks than some other poor soul who only buys 1 of whatever they need when they need it.

Clearly, a single rich guy always consumes more just because he's rich than a middle class or poor family of 5. Because flat-taxer 'logic' says so. And of course, being rich, he has no other means available to acquire things, other than routes where a tax is being collected.

I've got news for the flat-tax crowd: many rich people are rich because they are frugal with their money. A single rich guy who's actually smart DOES NOT consume more than a middle class family of 5. If you're counting on a tax system based on consumption- you're going to sock it to the middle class family of 5 NOT the single rich guy!

Of course, I realize that most of the flat-taxers know this also. I'm convinced the whole notion really is a way that the well-heeled will eventually fool everyone else into doing a complete 180 on who pays the majority of taxes.
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 01:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by ebuddy View Post
If fair is fair then you'd have to include all the holdings in 401ks that are exempt from capital gains taxes. Notwithstanding the fact that these tax-free bonds you're talking about are all issued by governments be it Federal, State, City, or County.
Did i mention fair? I just wanted to see the numbers. Certainly include the 401k holdings.
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 02:15 PM
 
Originally Posted by ebuddy View Post
For the most part I'd say your open-mindedness is unique considering your distrust for the right.
Interesting comment. I'm looking for hard data on this 9-9-9 bit, and I think it's interesting that I reached the exact opposite conclusion of the Bloomberg folks based on the same data. It seems like truth in politics is hard to come by, so I look for hard data when I can.

I'll admit I was being a bit snarky there at the end of my post. All I'll say on the matter is that I think my distrust of the right is well-founded, given what happened the last time we gave a guy from Texas keys to the White House.
     
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Oct 15, 2011, 03:15 PM
 
If it were up to me and I was named King OAW for the day ... the last thing I'd do is institute a combination of taxes at the federal level. At the state level I'm subject to income, sales, and property taxes. I certainly wouldn't wish that BS on anyone at the federal level. Either roll with a sales tax or an income tax ... but not both IMO. What I would do is something along the following:

1. Lockbox Entitlement Programs from the general revenue. There'd be a flat income tax .... not payroll tax .....for Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment Insurance, etc. No deductions. On all income regardless of how it is generated ... wages, dividends, or capital gains. The only exemption would be contributions to and capital gains earned in tax deferred investments for Retirement (e.g. IRA, 401K), Education (e.g. Section 529, etc.), or Health Care (e.g. Health Insurance, Health Savings Account, etc.).

2. The general revenue of the Federal government would be financed by a simplified income tax code. 4 marginal rates of 5, 10, 15, and 20% determined by income. Regardless of how the income is generated ... wages, dividends, or capital gains. Contributions to and capital gains earned for Retirement, Education, and Health Care would be exempt as indicated above. Businesses would have an additional deduction for employee expenses (e.g. wages, benefits, etc.) and capital investments. Beyond that, no deductions or credits.

Naturally I would want to see how the CBO would score this proposal to see if it would generate more or less revenue than the current code. But IMO it seems like a pretty straightforward approach that would lower rates and expand the tax base while generating more revenue. It maintains the progressive taxation system but does it in a manner that would make it next to impossible for anyone of any political persuasion to claim that it favored one segment of society over another. Just my 2 cents ...

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Oct 15, 2011, 03:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by turtle777 View Post
A president that makes good pizza is what this country needs.
Well, that rules Cain out.
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Oct 15, 2011, 09:52 PM
 
You lot don't know how good you have it.

In the UK, if you are a single, employed, homeowner with a car (not a flashy one, a 10 year old one) on minimum wage you end up giving half of your income straight back to the government in the form of various taxes. Income tax, VAT, council tax, etc etc.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
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Oct 16, 2011, 12:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by CRASH HARDDRIVE View Post
Oh brother, not this flat tax pipe dream again.
This is more a "flattened tax" than a straight "flat tax", but its goal to an overall, flat tax structure is unmistakable.

Yes, because millionaires never just go down to best buy and buy one HDTV for their den, they automagically buy sixty of them. Because a person is rich, they automatically consume enough for 60 people. So becasue of this obvious rule of the universe, you'll collect 60x the consumption tax off of these spendthrift rich folks than some other poor soul who only buys 1 of whatever they need when they need it.

Clearly, a single rich guy always consumes more just because he's rich than a middle class or poor family of 5. Because flat-taxer 'logic' says so. And of course, being rich, he has no other means available to acquire things, other than routes where a tax is being collected.

I've got news for the flat-tax crowd: many rich people are rich because they are frugal with their money. A single rich guy who's actually smart DOES NOT consume more than a middle class family of 5. If you're counting on a tax system based on consumption- you're going to sock it to the middle class family of 5 NOT the single rich guy!

Of course, I realize that most of the flat-taxers know this also. I'm convinced the whole notion really is a way that the well-heeled will eventually fool everyone else into doing a complete 180 on who pays the majority of taxes.
Do you have a link to show that the wealthy do not consume more? That is to say that they don't spend more on consumerism? Because you're right, but instead of buying "an HD TV", they're likely buying a larger, better, HD TV. They're only buying one vehicle also, but it is not a Kia Soul they're buying.
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Oct 16, 2011, 08:20 PM
 
Just watch Herman Cain on Meet the Press.

Herman Cain seemed very confused when ask about his 9-9-9 plan on how it would increase sales taxes.

When ask about how his plan would increase sales taxes on everything they purchase, Herman Cain said it would not increase sales taxes because the national sales tax and state sales tax are separate. Huh?

Instead of paying 9% in state taxes, now I'm paying 9% state tax plus 9% national sales tax, which would be effectively 18%.

Herman Cain doesn't think so.
Bush Tax Cuts == Job Killer
June 2001: 132,047,000 employed
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2.21 million jobs were LOST after 2 years of Bush Tax Cuts.
     
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Oct 16, 2011, 08:50 PM
 
Well I'd probably end up paying more with the loss of the mortgage interest deduction. But I can see how anyone who makes less than me will get soaked because a sales tax is so regressive.

I want all the loopholes and such removed from the tax code to save money on tax attorneys and cut the size of the IRS. My employer reports my w2, the bank reports the i9 and the IRS computer spits out a check / bill.
     
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Oct 17, 2011, 02:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by ebuddy View Post
Do you have a link to show that the wealthy do not consume more? That is to say that they don't spend more on consumerism? Because you're right, but instead of buying "an HD TV", they're likely buying a larger, better, HD TV. They're only buying one vehicle also, but it is not a Kia Soul they're buying.
Do you have a link to show that the wealthy consume more by a percentage significant enough to make them the chief taxpayers of a 'fair' tax system?

Someone should do a study of this based on current sales taxes. Do the wealthy really account for a significantly higher percentage of current sales tax revenues on consumer purchases, than do the vastly greater majority of poor and middle-class consumers?

I don't know if such a study exists, but simple logic would sway me to the belief that in this case, the greater number of people consuming things will pay more of the taxes than a much smaller number of people who happen to have more money.

Even if just having more money means they automagically spend more of it than their representation of the population every time they shop -you know, just because they can- does this offset the greater number of poor and middle class spending and paying sales taxes on just what they actually need?

That is the situation you'd have to have in order not to be strapping the poor and middle class with a lion's share of the tax burden under a 'fair' tax.

Looking at a current sale tax also wouldn't factor in the issue of need for avoidance. A fairly small sales tax that's not trying to replace income taxes isn't often worth avoiding. (Although, everyone does when they can, IE: buy it online vs. locally.) But once you jack the percentages up to replace-income tax levels, avoidance becomes highly profitable. Those with the most resources to consume under the tax radar (IE: the new loopholes) WILL. Same ol' same ol' only this time, you're crushing the poor and middle class with everything.

As for the car thing: I know rich people that drive Fords and Hondas, and 'normal' cars, and that don't own a fleet of them. I also know people that don't make all that much money that drive BMWs, Mercs, etc.

So sock it to the people that want to own a more expensive car, because we're pretending that only rich people buy more expensive cars? Why should the middle class person who wants a BMW be socked with a massive tax that's a huge percentage of his income, while a millionaire heads over to the Honda dealer and barely feels it? That's 'fair'?

I call it bullshit.

EDIT: Eesh, massive brain-fart. Rather than 'flat' tax, I meant the so-called 'fair' tax, or any scheme to replace income taxes with sales taxes. I support an effective flat tax.
( Last edited by CRASH HARDDRIVE; Oct 17, 2011 at 11:18 PM. Reason: 'Fair' not 'flat')
     
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Oct 17, 2011, 02:43 PM
 
If you're rich it's the best plan ever. It actually manages to do something I thought very improbable, it moves the tax burden almost completely onto the middle and lower income. First, if you're rich, your income tax drops from 35% to 9%. Then to make up the difference, you create a heavily aggressive sales tax on the other 80% of Americans who spend the bulk of their income on goods and services.
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Oct 17, 2011, 06:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon View Post
If you're rich it's the best plan ever. It actually manages to do something I thought very improbable, it moves the tax burden almost completely onto the middle and lower income. First, if you're rich, your income tax drops from 35% to 9%. Then to make up the difference, you create a heavily aggressive sales tax on the other 80% of Americans who spend the bulk of their income on goods and services.
Exactly. This is the most regressive and hostile presidential campaign plan since the 19th century. Cain is a completely clueless twit.
     
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Oct 19, 2011, 02:35 PM
 
No idea how accurate this graph is, but too lulzy not to post:

     
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Oct 19, 2011, 08:41 PM
 
I came to post that exact graph. It clearly demonstrates what a complete loon he is and how stupid his supporters are.
     
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Oct 19, 2011, 11:19 PM
 
someone reads reddit....

they used $ amounts in that graph to skew it. It obviously shows who pays the largest amount in taxes.

----

from the same reddit.


Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that’s what they decided to do.

The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. “Since you are all such good customers,” he said, “I’m going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.” Drinks for the ten now cost just $80 total.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men – the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his ‘fair share?’ They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody’s share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man’s bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so:

The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).
The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 ( 25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 ( 22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).
Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.

“I only got a dollar out of the $20,” declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man,”but he got $10!”

“Yeah, that’s right,” exclaimed the fifth man. “I only saved a dollar, too. It’s unfair that he got ten times more than I!“

“That’s true!!” shouted the seventh man. “Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!“

“Wait a minute,” yelled the first four men in unison. “We didn’t get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!“

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.

The next night the tenth man didn’t show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn’t have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, boys and girls, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

cause we're not quite "the fuzz"
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 12:53 AM
 


-t
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 03:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
And that, boys and girls, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.


Liberals don't believe this has ever been put to the test anywhere in the world, but it has, many times, and the results are always the same.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 03:20 AM
 
So I guess you three missed the part that Cain's plan raises taxes on everyone except the wealthy, who enjoy enormous cuts? Because your joke is completely unlike Cain's plan in every way. Maybe you should read the stuff you cut'n'paste from elsewhere.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 03:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
So I guess you three missed the part that Cain's plan raises taxes on everyone except the wealthy, who enjoy enormous cuts? Because your joke is completely unlike Cain's plan in every way. Maybe you should read the stuff you cut'n'paste from elsewhere.
My point is that all this discussion from the left on taxes is absolutely asinine. The tax system as we know it in the US needs drastic changes. His plan is flawed, but at least the discussion has started and someone has the nuts to put something out there to be criticized. Imagine that, someone actually trying to put up real proposals. Critique it, but don't use bullshit graphs to cater to your wants. We get it, you want the rich to pay for your free shit.

It has been proven time and again in this world that taking from those that make the most and giving it to those that "need" it simply results in lost wealth for all and collapse of entire countries. 50% of this country lives off the hard work of the other 50%. It is about time everyone chipped in something instead of having more kids and buying crap they don't need all while blaming others for their problems.

I am not jealous of people that make more than me and do not demand that they owe me anything. I strive and work hard to be more like them. Call me an evil capitalist, but I can rest well at night knowing that I earned what I have purchased.

cause we're not quite "the fuzz"
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 03:57 AM
 
So where's my free beer? I didn't realize all our tax money was being spent on beer.

You are comparing Apples to Oranges.

The US is just collecting protection/insurance money from those who can afford it.

Poor people are worrying about paying for food, clothing, and shelter.
Rich people are most concern about protecting their assets.

Rich people benefit the most from all the defense and discretionary spending.
( Last edited by hyteckit; Oct 20, 2011 at 04:09 AM. )
Bush Tax Cuts == Job Killer
June 2001: 132,047,000 employed
June 2003: 129,839,000 employed
2.21 million jobs were LOST after 2 years of Bush Tax Cuts.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:06 AM
 
Let's just take everyones money.

EAT THE RICH! - YouTube

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Oct 20, 2011, 04:10 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
My point is that all this discussion from the left on taxes is absolutely asinine.
All the other GOP candidates condemned this plan. Even Ron Paul called it regressive. Not exactly "the left," is it? It isn't only the left that criticizes Cain's plan, but anyone with a brain. And Cain has been lying about it, saying "some will pay more, but most will pay less," which is an utter, deliberate falsehood.

The tax system as we know it in the US needs drastic changes.
It really doesn't. There's nothing fundamentally wrong with the US income tax system, it's the corporate tax and capital gains tax system that's screwed up.

His plan is flawed, but at least the discussion has started and someone has the nuts to put something out there to be criticized.
He doesn't have nuts, he is nuts. Frankly, I'm starting to think he's there just to make Romney and Perry look sane by comparison.

It has been proven time and again in this world that taking from those that make the most and giving it to those that "need" it simply results in lost wealth for all and collapse of entire countries.
No, it hasn't been "proven" at all. A reasonable welfare state does not cause countries to collapse.

The US is collapsing because of out-of-control military spending, an unregulated banking system, and the offshoring of profits (Google diverts most of its profits to Burmuda, for instance). Greece is collapsing because of a culture of tax evasion and borrowing money it can't pay back. Canada is not collapsing because it isn't adopting the policies that are killing the US and Greece. Blaming the welfare state for the problems of the US is ridiculously laughable analysis.

50% of this country lives off the hard work of the other 50%.
This kind of malarky is why I don't take you seriously.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:18 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
Let's just take everyones money.

EAT THE RICH! - YouTube
Not a very smart dude.
Bush Tax Cuts == Job Killer
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
That was the most pointless analysis possible. No one is claiming we can or should run the gov't by making only the rich pay for it. This is typical straw-man bullsh!t. He is refuting a point no one is arguing for.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
That was the most pointless analysis possible. No one is claiming we can or should run the gov't by making only the rich pay for it. This is typical straw-man bullsh!t. He is refuting a point no one is arguing for.
Let's make this easy. Give me your address. I'll just send you a check for how much you think I owe you. Give me a receipt for it and I will hand it to the IRS that I paid my fair share.

Heck, we could have everyone do this. Everyone pick a liberal partner and write them a check.

cause we're not quite "the fuzz"
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:52 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
Let's make this easy. Give me your address. I'll just send you a check for how much you think I owe you. Give me a receipt for it and I will hand it to the IRS that I paid my fair share.

Heck, we could have everyone do this. Everyone pick a liberal partner and write them a check.
Since this is the 9-9-9 thread, how about you tell us why the poor owe you 9% of their income and 9% of every dollar they spend in a store.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 04:53 AM
 
BTW, this is why I never come around here anymore. It's almost as dirty as a Soros bathtub.

I'll leave you with these. Enjoy your utopia.

"A Time for Choosing" by Ronald Reagan - YouTube
Margaret Thatcher on Socialism - YouTube

cause we're not quite "the fuzz"
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 05:10 AM
 
When you don't come around, no one misses you. So we all win.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 05:15 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
BTW, this is why I never come around here anymore. It's almost as dirty as a Soros bathtub.

I'll leave you with these. Enjoy your utopia.

"A Time for Choosing" by Ronald Reagan - YouTube
Margaret Thatcher on Socialism - YouTube
Ronald Reagan was a RINO. Triple the national debt, increase spending dramatically, and raises taxes on everyone.

Conservative Christian should know better than turning Pres. Reagan into a false idol.
Bush Tax Cuts == Job Killer
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Oct 20, 2011, 05:30 AM
 
Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that’s what they decided to do.
.
So for $100 beer.

Richest pays 59% in sales taxes.
Four poorest guys pays 0% in sales taxes.

Damn. Sounds like an awesome national sales tax plan.

When can we implement this?
Bush Tax Cuts == Job Killer
June 2001: 132,047,000 employed
June 2003: 129,839,000 employed
2.21 million jobs were LOST after 2 years of Bush Tax Cuts.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 09:24 AM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
Since this is the 9-9-9 thread, how about you tell us why the poor owe you 9% of their income and 9% of every dollar they spend in a store.
Because they disproportionately use government services and handouts.

After all, they like big government, that's what they are voting and screaming for.
See, that's the MAIN problem: people demand things that they are not willing to fund / finance. That's bullshit.

-t
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 10:24 AM
 
Originally Posted by CRASH HARDDRIVE View Post


Liberals don't believe this has ever been put to the test anywhere in the world, but it has, many times, and the results are always the same.
Wait a second, am I missing something here?

1. Someone starts thread about 9-9-9 plan.
2. You ridicule it as a flat tax dream that is ultimately regressive.
3. I post a graph illustrating that
4. Lint Police copy/pastes an email as some kind of refutation
5. You thumbs up the copy paste

HUH?!

Originally Posted by Lint Police View Post
someone reads reddit....

they used $ amounts in that graph to skew it. It obviously shows who pays the largest amount in taxes.

----

from the same reddit.


Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
You're obviously using $ amounts to skew it. We know who had to use the largest % of their income on beer.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 11:53 AM
 
Whenever I see these tax discussions I don't know whether to laugh or puke.

On one hand I find it rather funny to see people trying to find "fairness" in a system which is designed to confiscate peoples' wealth. "Lipstick on a pig" comes to mind.

On the other hand I find it sickening to see so many trying to come up with the "proper" scheme to use the tax code to further their personal agenda or ideological notions. Taxes are supposed to be about the government generating revenue, not enforcing some contrived notion of equity, fairness, social justice…what have you. There is no rational principle behind the idea that the rich should pay a higher percentage of their income in taxes than someone who earns less, likewise there is none behind the idea that a poor person should pay zero. Only arbitrary ideological notions.

Under the criteria that some of you seem to be implying I don't see how any real tax reform would be possible.

I personally don't think that the 9-9-9 plan is perfect, but I like it more than what we have now and I like it more than the other proposals of the other candidates…oh wait they have none. I don't really care to argue its particulars since I think that the chance of it getting anywhere are NIL. I can't foresee any real tax reform in a country with such an epidemic of classism and pandering, gutless politicians as we have.

But as someone said, at least it IS a proposal. What would have been better? Vague, hollow notions of hope and change?
"Altruism is killing America. We who want to save America must repudiate this killer, root and branch. We must understand and explain to others that the acceptance of altruism necessitates the violation of individual rights... and that the arguments for altruism are baseless..."
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 02:08 PM
 
Taxes are supposed to be about the government generating revenue, not enforcing some contrived notion of equity, fairness, social justice…what have you.
False alternatives. Taxes are about generating revenue, and the tax codes must be fair and equitable. Or do you think fairness is some undesirable quality?

There is no rational principle behind the idea that the rich should pay a higher percentage of their income in taxes than someone who earns less, likewise there is none behind the idea that a poor person should pay zero. Only arbitrary ideological notions.
False again. It is the "flat tax" notion that is ideologically driven. A progressive tax is based on: the government has to be paid for, and a flat tax can't pay for it without destroying the poor and middle class. That's not ideology, that's fact.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 02:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Wait a second, am I missing something here?

1. Someone starts thread about 9-9-9 plan.
2. You ridicule it as a flat tax dream that is ultimately regressive.
3. I post a graph illustrating that
4. Lint Police copy/pastes an email as some kind of refutation
5. You thumbs up the copy paste

HUH?!
Yeah you noticed that too huh? It's just indicative of Crash's mindset. When the opportunity presents itself to slam "liberals" he blindly takes it. And it doesn't matter that a few posts earlier he had taken a position that many "liberals" would agree with. Bless his heart ... but he just can't help himself.

OAW
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 02:18 PM
 
I think that taxes should have the same relative effect on people's discretionary income. Someone who makes a billion dollars a year can pay quite allot before it affects them, but someone living near the poverty line is counting every penny and a few dollars can have a measurable effect. That's how I'd define fair, spread the pain of taxes equally even if the absolute dollars is uneven.

Had a thought, think of the defense budget like insurance, the more assets you have the more you should pay so the Dutch don't come and take it.
     
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Oct 20, 2011, 02:26 PM
 
Originally Posted by The Final Dakar View Post
Wait a second, am I missing something here?

1. Someone starts thread about 9-9-9 plan.
2. You ridicule it as a flat tax dream that is ultimately regressive.
3. I post a graph illustrating that
4. Lint Police copy/pastes an email as some kind of refutation
5. You thumbs up the copy paste

HUH?!
Yes, you're missing something.

I clearly went back and corrected my posts- that I was mistaking a flat tax, for the so-called 'fair' tax, which is a whole different animal.

Supposedly the 9-9-9 plan or whatever (really who cares, the whole thing will never be implemented) contains elements of both, but clearly isn't entirely the usual 'fair' tax pablum.

As for your chart, even you admited you had no idea if it was accurate or not. I wasn't even considering it. If you had read, you'd have noticed that what Lint Police posted is an illustration of CURRENT taxes- in reality. A simple statement of fact that with ANY tax cut, those that actually pay more, get more back. A simple fact that always makes liberals go.. HUH!?

So yeah. You missed something.
     
 
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