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#34287 - 11/08/07 12:46 AM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Daniel]
irisharehere Offline
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Registered: 12/06/01
Posts: 1658
Loc: Danbury CT
I certainly ouldn't absolve Bush of all blame - I just don't think that the problems we're currently seeing can be layed entirely at his door.

YVMV

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I didn't spend nine years in Evil Graduate School to be called "Mr Irish", thank you!

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#34294 - 11/08/07 03:44 AM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: irisharehere]
chip Offline
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Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
I certainly don't agree with many of Bush's policies, but the tax cuts have resulted in much more treasury gain than they have taken away. This has been the case with each of the 4 major tax cuts enacted, beginning with Kennedy.

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#34297 - 11/08/07 05:42 AM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: chip]
Daniel Offline
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Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
Some people claim that tax cuts increase revenues, but I've heard that economists generally agree that there would have been even more revenues today without W's tax cuts.

Tax cuts rarely reduce revenues because they are usually outweighed by typical economic growth, increases in population (and so number of people and workers paying taxes), and inflation. Bush 41 and Clinton increased taxes and revenues went up too. Problem is that with the tax cuts, revenues have failed to keep pace with expenditures.

W's tax cuts for the wealthy were originally justified as giving the surplus back to those who had paid for it. When the economy tanked, the exact same tax cuts were marketed as an economic stimulus. Most economists agreed that a tax cut meant as an economic stimulus would have been much more effective if it had been directed at the lower income groups which would be much more likely to spend it on goods and services. The tax cuts we got were not good economic policy; it was Republicans playing to a part of their base.

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#34399 - 11/15/07 02:56 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Daniel]
Fraser Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/15/02
Posts: 700
Loc: New Canaan, CT
There is a basic flaw in this discussion that we're talking about the government's money or giving back the government's money to the people with tax cuts. I think we should remember that it is our money that the government is taking from us. The rich aren't a natural resource to be tapped at the Democrats whim every time they want to fund some bridge to nowhere.

It is commonly agreed that heavy taxes have cause the Eurpean community in general to suffer from uncompetitive practices and stalled economic growth.

Further, is the OP suggesting that we should pay more as consumers for products and artificially inflate prices? I doubt it.

Finally, it seems xenophobic to me to want to put Chinese workers out of work so we can pay more for rock climbing equipment.

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#34400 - 11/15/07 03:05 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Fraser]
oenophore Online   confused
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Registered: 09/24/01
Posts: 5972
Loc: 212 land
The solution to D-elvis's problem is for him to be paid in euros. OPEC producers may do the same someday.
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#34402 - 11/15/07 03:56 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Fraser]
MarcC Offline
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Registered: 07/10/00
Posts: 3532
 Originally Posted By: Fraser
The rich aren't a natural resource to be tapped at the Democrats whim every time they want to fund some bridge to nowhere.

If you're going to take cheap, gratuitous shots, please get your facts straight. The infamous "bridge to nowhere" and it's funding was pushed relentlessly by staunch Republican Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska.
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#34405 - 11/15/07 05:23 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Fraser]
Daniel Offline
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Registered: 05/23/01
Posts: 1515
The flaw is seeing government as an alien entity that "takes" from us. "Government" doesn't tax us; we are our government, and we decide through our government how to tax ourselves for the programs we say we want. When Reagan said "It's not the government's money; it's your money," he was only half right. It is your money. But it's also your government.

As for the rich not being a natural resource, surely there are tax rates that becomes counterproductive by inhibiting growth. But I don't see a rush to avoid getting into the top brackets these days. We had tremendous growth, even pre-bubble, after H.W. and Clinton raised taxes. The wealthy did fine; in fact, the gap between rich and poor increased (though the poor did somewhat better too). I don't see why we shouldn't return to those rates, especially if it helps restore fiscal responsibility. (Add to that the fact that after one includes wage taxes, property taxes, and sales taxes, our overall tax system is pretty flat.)

There are many factors other than taxation that effect growth. Many European countries make it hard to fire workers or have other rules that inhibit innovation. There was an article in the NY Times recently (can't find it at the moment) about a study on taxes as a percentage of GDP and economic growth; the study found a correlation but it was weak. In particular, one of the Scandinavian countries had performed substantially better than the US even with its substantially higher tax burden.

The problem with W's tax cuts is that it continued to "give back" the surplus to those who had paid for it when there was no longer any surplus to give back. If you want to cut taxes for the wealthy, fine; but then figure out how it should be paid for. Because if expenditures don't decrease, and one group pays less taxes, others will have to pay more unless you want to further run up our debt--which would only further weaken the dollar (to return to the OP topic).

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#34410 - 11/15/07 07:30 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Daniel]
chip Offline
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Registered: 10/06/01
Posts: 2676
Loc: Sittin' Pretty in Fat City
I know a bit about the Scandinavian situation, as my wife is from there and we enjoy visiting her family. There was a tremendous loss of productivity under some ridiculous taxation that actually caused a number of people to leave, especially Sweden and Denmark. My father-in-law painfully desided to become an American citizen over this issue about ten years ago. The taxation has been cut and the increased productivity is the result. I'm not sure where it will level off, but there continues to be public sentiment through-out most of Scandinavia to continue the trend.

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#34420 - 11/15/07 10:25 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: MarcC]
Fraser Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/15/02
Posts: 700
Loc: New Canaan, CT
 Originally Posted By: MarcC
 Originally Posted By: Fraser
The rich aren't a natural resource to be tapped at the Democrats whim every time they want to fund some bridge to nowhere.

If you're going to take cheap, gratuitous shots, please get your facts straight. The infamous "bridge to nowhere" and it's funding was pushed relentlessly by staunch Republican Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska.


You got me on the mixed metaphor. I apologize, I am too busy trying to make enough money to keep your entitlements afloat to use the right metaphor. Just insert "great society" instead.

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#34421 - 11/15/07 10:29 PM Re: Damn the Euro [Re: Daniel]
Fraser Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/15/02
Posts: 700
Loc: New Canaan, CT
 Originally Posted By: Daniel
The flaw is seeing government as an alien entity that "takes" from us. "Government" doesn't tax us; we are our government, and we decide through our government how to tax ourselves for the programs we say we want. When Reagan said "It's not the government's money; it's your money," he was only half right. It is your money. But it's also your government.

As for the rich not being a natural resource, surely there are tax rates that becomes counterproductive by inhibiting growth. But I don't see a rush to avoid getting into the top brackets these days. We had tremendous growth, even pre-bubble, after H.W. and Clinton raised taxes. The wealthy did fine; in fact, the gap between rich and poor increased (though the poor did somewhat better too). I don't see why we shouldn't return to those rates, especially if it helps restore fiscal responsibility. (Add to that the fact that after one includes wage taxes, property taxes, and sales taxes, our overall tax system is pretty flat.)

There are many factors other than taxation that effect growth. Many European countries make it hard to fire workers or have other rules that inhibit innovation. There was an article in the NY Times recently (can't find it at the moment) about a study on taxes as a percentage of GDP and economic growth; the study found a correlation but it was weak. In particular, one of the Scandinavian countries had performed substantially better than the US even with its substantially higher tax burden.

The problem with W's tax cuts is that it continued to "give back" the surplus to those who had paid for it when there was no longer any surplus to give back. If you want to cut taxes for the wealthy, fine; but then figure out how it should be paid for. Because if expenditures don't decrease, and one group pays less taxes, others will have to pay more unless you want to further run up our debt--which would only further weaken the dollar (to return to the OP topic).


That is exactly the attitude that will kill off productivity in the country. That and trying to respond to all these scurrilous charges.

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