Anachostic

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Tag Archives: liberal

Shades of Taxes

I recently watched a video on the dangers of “socialism.”  It was an animation and was intended to be humorous while delivering its message.  The illustration given was a classroom where it was announced that everyone would get the same grade, averaged from all the tests.  After the first test, everyone got a B, the next test, everyone got a D, the last test, everyone got an F.  This is how socialism works, apparently.

The problem with the illustration is that the subjects are of two distinct personalities: selfish and lazy, which is how anti-socialism people view the world.  You are either selfish and in it for yourself only, which is why you are a capitalist, or you are lazy and don’t want to do anything, which is why socialism is so great for you.

The world is so full of absolutes right now, it’s disgusting.  You are either Left or Right, Pro or Con.  And that designation, aside from having no variance, also has no subsets.  There will always be those that will fight for a cause and those that don’t care about it.  There will always be people who care about doing a good job and those who don’t see the point in it.

Here’s an anti-socialist viewpoint: why have garbage cans on the street?  Eventually everyone’s going to just throw their trash on the ground, because there’s no gain in using the garbage can.  All the effort of trying to keep the streets clean is wasted on those that don’t care, so why bother.  I mean, either you’re 100% for litter control, in which case you’d handle all of your trash needs yourself and have no need for government-subsidized garbage can entitlements, or you’re not, in which case the ground is your garbage can.

Flippant as it is, it exposes the hypocrisy of anti-socialists.  If it’s something they support, good, otherwise, fuck off.  These people want life to be a’la carte.  They want to pick and choose every single piece of their life experience.  So why not?

Yes, why not?  Everyone bitches and moans about their tax dollars going to pay for something that they hate.  So why not let them choose?  Why not?  I think we have enough diversity in America that everything would be funded as it’s needed.  You’d have your rich, educated types diverting their tax money to education programs, earth and hippie types allocating for environmental causes, farmers propping up agriculture subsidies, rednecks and bulletheads giving all their tax dollars to defense.  Despite all the stereotypes, it would all work out.  And you’d have normal people allocating some here and some there, balancing things even further.

So all this stuff about Congress budgeting and allocating and taxing and robbing people to pay Paul, it all goes away.  Each year, the income tax forms are collected and everyone has contributed a flat tax of 10%, 12%, 15%, whatever.  Everyone has indicated on their tax form whether they want their taxes spread equally or according to the category assignments provided.  You will actually have a tangible value assigned to the service, instead of “These people insist their service needs more funding.”

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Warning: Political Topics Inside (Gas Mask Recommended)

On my way to dinner tonight, I found myself thinking of a few political issues.  Just some unanswered questions that run through my head that I don’t care to really know the answer to.  Well, I kind of care about the answer, but I don’t think the people that profess to have the answer are objective enough to have an unbiased answer.  Such is the current political climate where no one trusts anyone else.

Anyway, I was thinking about left vs. right and how the right always accuses the left of overspending on social programs.  They’re too expensive, they always get more expensive.  Doesn’t anyone consider that there is a growing population?  It would make logical sense that if the population is growing, the cost of providing social services for that population will grow as well.  Solution: we need less people.  Welcome to my soapbox.

The other argument is that social services make people dependent on government.  The right claims that they want all people to be independent and self-supporting.  Well, not really.  They want people to be just as dependent on government, too, but instead of offering social services, they offer security.  And how is that benefit sold?  Through fear.  Fear of anything and everyone.  It used to be fear of external sources: communists, Islamic  radicals, Chinese superpower.  That’s been supplanted by fear of internal sources: your fellow Americans.  So to summarize, you can get your shackles in your choice of color: red or blue.

But the original point of my post was not intended to be political, it just ended up that way because I was thinking about the stalemate on the debt ceiling and how our government needs more revenue to support the left’s social services and the right’s defense/offense initiatives.  The best way to do this is to make sure everyone pays taxes.  The best way to do that is by enacting the FairTax.  When I hear that there is a way to make drug dealers and illegal under-the-table laborers pay taxes, I’m fully in support of it.

The FairTax has been stalled many times and I suspect quite a bit of it is because of the enormity of change it involves.  Much like any huge undertaking, like converting to electric vehicles, it’s a balance between building the infrastructure and building the products.  In this case, the product is the FairTax, and the infrastructure is how to capture and report that revenue.

So, how much closer could we get if someone like Amazon made a press release saying “our website code is ready to support the proposed implementation of the FairTax.”  And a month later, EBay/PayPal announce their sites are ready to go once it is enacted.  If these two major shopping companies embrace and proactively  adopt this concept, it could put pressure on other companies to be prepared, just in case.  Then when most everyone is ready to handle the change, it’s a tacit acceptance of the change itself.

And isn’t that a wonderful reversal: having businesses tell the government how they want to handle revenue reporting?

Epiphany

There is an infographic I found a while ago that I found quite interesting.  At the time I found it, It was a “that’s neat” response.  Upon revisiting it and doing some critical thinking, I realize that it answers so much about the current political environment.  Some questions it explains:

  • Why can we never have world peace?
  • Why can we never be equals?
  • Why must some people be poor?
  • Why do those poor people typically vote for Democrats?
  • Why are rich, white people typically Republicans?
  • Why are we so screwed up right now?

The key, for me, is understanding the base motivations of Conservatives and Liberals.  It also made me realize how liberal I am, so consider this your warning.

For reference, the graphic is at: http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/left-vs-right-world

Typically, when you hear pundits talk about right/left, red/blue, Republican/Democrat, they focus on stereotypes: Democrats want to raise taxes, Republicans want to start wars, Democrats want government to control your life, Republicans only care about the rich people.  No one ever talks about why these parties do this.

A simplistic view is that Liberals want everyone to get along and to be treated equally, while Conservatives want defined classes of people.  Why do Conservatives need classes of people?  Because their whole ideology is based on getting personally rewarded for your personal efforts – the harder you work, the more reward you get.  Sounds pretty good,  and I agree with it until I realize that this requires a winner and a loser.  Your success results in failure for others.  Their success results in failure for you.  So, successful people want to remain successful and keep others that would threaten their success as subordinate. “The rich get richer.”

Why are they called Conservatives?  Because they resist change.  Things are fine just as they are, with us in control.  How far back do you have to go to see Conservatives resisting change because Conservatives were in power?  All the way back to the days of slavery.

So on the other side you have Liberals, who are always changing things in the interest of balancing power, making advancement possible for people who don’t have the resources available to richer people.  And Conservatives hate that.  First, because they didn’t get any help for their success, and second, because it gives them competition.

The other light bulb burning brightly from my study of this graphic is a key word applied to Conservatives: fear.  It is found in the relationship of parent to child.  Parents control their children through fear.  It’s been nearly 10 years that we have been besieged with a non-stop torrent of fear mongering from our Republican leaders.  When we finally received a break – in the message of “Hope” – the Republican message remained unchanged, but refocused.  Now instead of fearing an external enemy, we must fear our own government.  But only because the current president is a Democrat, once Republicans take over again, we can start worrying about the rest of the world.

So in summary, having Conservatives in charge means things will not change.  That’s great if you are a Conservative yourself and/or you are content with the way things are right now.  The problem with being Liberal is that your nature is to promote equality.  This tactic doesn’t work against a Conservative, who does not believe in equality and whose prime mission is to rise above and control others in order to succeed – little more than base, primal, instinct.

2012 can not come soon enough.