Wednesday, October 26, 2011

More On the Protesting Morons

I'm sure some of their points are valid--a stopped clock is right twice a day, after all--but for the most part they're "mockworthy":
After we’ve taken care of their wealth, to keep the nation happy and prosperous we should pass a law making it illegal for there to be a wealthiest 1 percent -- this country should just be the normal 99 percent.

Sure, that isn’t mathematically possible, but government shouldn’t be about what’s possible; it should be about what’s fair.
This, to me, is more valid:
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Occupy Wall Street protesters might say they represent 99% of the nation, but there's a growing number of Americans who are making it clear they are not part of the dissident crowd.

They call themselves the in the 53% of Americans who pay federal income taxes. And they are making their voices heard on Tumblr blogs, Twitter and Facebook pages devoted to stories of personal responsibility and work ethic.

The number originates in the estimate that roughly 47% of Americans don't pay federal income tax, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. The 53 percenters stress the fact that they are paying the taxes that support the government assistance the protesters say they want.
How many engineering or computer science--or even math!--majors are out there among those protesters?


PeggyU said...

That nimrod who went to Libya was a math major. So was Obama's mother. Engineers and computer science students may be more practical, though.

Darren said...

I thought that kid who went to Libya was pretty "plucky", if nothing else. Haven't read much flattering about Obama's mother.

But point made. Ouch.

muckdog said...

Hey, let's make everything free for those who don't work. The folks who work can pay for it.

That'd last a long time, eh?

PeggyU said...

Darren - I didn't mean to be rude. After all, it was my major too. :)

You are probably right. I would guess there are more humanities students in the OWS crowd than there are math and science students. However, I think the math students who do lean socialist seem to be zealots.

As to the kid who went to Libya, I just keep coming back to the fact that the rebels who overthrew Ghaddafi are not necessarily worth backing, and what develops may, in fact, be worse for the Libyan people. Wouldn't it have been just as plucky (but more sensible and less romantic) to join our military and serve in active duty?

Ellen K said...

This is dress rehearsal for the G8 in May in Chicago. Obama thinks this will fuel his campaign with sympathetic international attention. Instead those who vote will recall Days of Rage and 1968 Chicago and wonder who's in charge. time for a change. Occupy Dallas we have had people vandalize a store and distribute union material. We have had a public street and downtown bank blocked for customers. And the topper is that a 14 year old runaway was hiding in the camp and allegedly had sex with numerous male adults. Their response "She said she was 19....." These guys are paid, they have expensive IPhones, costly laptops and access to money. So who is paying them? I think we have a right to know.

Darren said...

Peggy, I wasn't offended in the least by your comment, especially as I knew where you were coming from.

While joining our military would have been more worthwhile, I don't think it would have been "plucky". You're right that the rebels may not be nice people and may cause more harm than good, but joining their cause for a little bit was certainly gutsy.

maxutils said...

Can we please stop stating that 47% of Americans don't pay Federal income tax? That may be semantically correct, but since the largest Federal programs are funded through FICA, which everyone who works pays, at an effective rate double the stated rate (employer's contributions are simply reflected in lower wages) it is completely disingenuous. Especially since there is a cap on the amount of income one is required to pay FICA tax on. That means the effective rate of taxation is actually higher on the 47% than the 53%. Sure makes a good sound bite for conservatives preaching to people who don't understand the tax code, though.

Darren said...

No, Max, we won't stop saying it, because it is objectively true. FICA is a separate matter, as is state income tax, state sales tax, property tax, vehicle registration taxes, etc.

maxutils said...

Choosing one of the two taxes that are paid mostly by the rich, while choosing to ignore every other tax, most of which are paid at a higher rate by the poor (notably, every single one you mentioned save state income tax, and FICA, which I brought up) is completely intellectualy dishonest. Unfortunately, it also works, because most people have no understanding of the tax code and how tax burden is caculated. The amount of federal income tax paid by certain percentiles is absolutely irrelevant: what is relevant is total tax burden. That is, the sum of all taxes and fees of ANY kind, whether paid directly by the individual, or indirectly through employer or landlord, divided by income. When you look at it that way, the 47% are paying a lot more of their share than it would appear. The problem is, we have so many different taxes and fees that it is virtually impossible to do that. But, it all goes into the same government pot . . . and, not one of the Republican candidates wants to address the problem. Rick Perry's so impressed with his postcard tax return? Great. The poor just increased their tax burden at the expense of the rich. Herm Cain's national sales tax? Completely regressive, especially since the 9% corporate income tax is effectively a double sales tax. So, I guess, what's your point? That because the poor are disproportianately affected by almost every tax in existence, they should also be hit harder by the federal income tax? I GUESS there's a certain logic to that.

maxutils said...

And, not to just bitch about something without offering a solution? Here's how you simplify the tax code, make it 'fair', and balance the budget all at once:

1)eliminate every single tax and fee, beginning with the next fiscal year. Or, 2 years, if you think it necessary.

2) determine the amount of revenue necessary to provide government services at the local, state, and federal levels.

3)Decide which deductions you need to keep. I would argue for standard, dependents, mortgage interest on a FIRST home, and business expenses for business OWNERS.

4) Create one tax form which allows for income, minus deductions, to create taxable income; then

5) create a progressive tax bracket system, at each governmental level, that generates enough revenue to coverr what you decided government should pay for in step 1. The standard deduction will automatically make it progressive, but probably not enough. That said, we shouldn't go back to the era of JFK where the top tax bracket had a marginal rate of 90%. You would then pay a graduated percentage of your taxable income for local, state, and federal, based on what your locale had decided. So, you might pay 3% local, 6% state, and 15% federal; someone better off might pay 5, 9, and 20 on the amount in the next bracket. Someone in another, more government inclined state might start at 5 a
nd 9, but would stay at 15 federal to start.

6)every couple of years, reevaluate step 1.

Nigel said...

Yawn. This is such a TEA party-styled bitch-fest. Yes, the statistics state that 53% pay they income taxes. Cool, guys, you're doing what you're supposed to. The corruption of Wall Street and ineffectiveness of our government affects everyone, not just the ones with an accountant. The movement isn't about who pays their taxes and who doesn't—it's about trying to change a system that is broken. And for the record, in my experience—engineering, computer science and math majors are the most politically apathetic out there. If you want logical, rational reasoning from a college student, ask for the philosophy department. : )

Darren said...

Wow, Nigel sides with flaming libs. There's a shocker.

Nigel, they may have some good points, but they aren't winning any converts to their position with their actions. They come across as whiny little socialist ingrates who think they're owed whatever they want. Not a big market for that....

maxutils said...

so . . .the primary thing they are protesting is corporate compensation, and the fact that the government has bailed out so many industries at taxpayer expense. Since socialism is predicated on government support/control of industry, doesn't that make the protesters ANTI-socialist?