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Comment: Re:Solution (Score 1, Insightful) 405

As OP stated, and I already repeated, a 20% tax on a $20,000/yr income...
See, that's where your mistake lies. When 75% of your income is spent on tax free items, you're not paying 20% of your income in taxes. ...is a much larger chunk of income than a 20% tax hit on a $200,000 income.
So? Class envy much?
$3.50 a gallon fuel is much more of a burden on a person making $20,000/yr than a person making $200,000/yr. Should we charge poor people less for gas? For that matter every dime a rich person spends is going to be less of a burden to the rich than the poor, and we are doing nothing about it? Did you know that rich people can afford to have other people cook their food? I've heard they can keep their houses at 55 degrees in Florida year round, and it's no burden at all. That's not fair at all! Why should eating be more of a burden on the poor than the rich?

Comment: Re:Solution (Score 4, Insightful) 405

gas is taxed.
repairs are taxed
registration is taxed.

Why wouldn't the sale of a car be taxed?

How about clothing? Need clothes to live, right?
Nope. If it makes you feel better, you could make school kids clothing tax free, or only make new clothing taxable. If you don't want to pay the tax, buy second hand.

Now Paris Hilton can buy 400 pairs of shoe tax-free!
So? Why do you care what Paris Hilton does? See, that's the problem. You are so damn worried that a rich person might save $80 on a pair of shoes that you want EVERYONE else to go through hell so a rich bitch won't save a buck.

Watch out for that slippery slope you're on.
Odd. Nearly everyone of the 50 states has programs like this and they don't have a problem. Were you referring to the "slippery slope" fallacy?

Comment: Re:Corporate taxes (Score 1) 405

Rich people spend less of their money and save more of it than poor people, simply because there's more left over after paying for the necessities.
All money is spent eventually. Also, what do you think the bank does with the money people "save"? Banks loan that money to someone else and charge them a higher interest rate than they are paying the savings account. That is how banks make money. So the person who takes the loan will spend it, meaning it will be taxed. When the savings account is cashed out, that too will be spent, plus all the interest earned.

So, in this case, the same money is taxed multiple times. Also, all the money is taxed at the same rate. Currently, loan income is not taxed as income. But under a sales tax, the when the person taking the loan buys new office furniture, it will be taxed.

So, it would be even more regressive than the current system.
Currently, interest income and capital gains are charged a lower rate the standard income. This is how wealthy people pay such a ridiculously low tax rate (Warren Buffet pays less than his secretary). This would not longer be an issue with a sales tax.

Finally, all money is spent eventually. It doesn't matter if it was saved or invested at one point. Even if the person who earned it dies, eventually, all money is spent, even if by his heirs.

Comment: Re:Solution (Score 1) 405

someone who makes $200,000 a year does not spend it all in a way that would be subject to a sales tax.
All money is spent eventually. Even if you die and leave it to someone else, it will get spent by them. When it is spent, it is taxed.

Savings / Investing is not subject to a sales tax.
Nope, but it will be spent eventually. All money is spent eventually. As a bonus, the capital gains/interest earned will be taxed at the same rate as the rest of the money. Currently, capital gains and interest income has a much lower rate. This is how Warren Buffet has a lower tax rate than his secretary. This problem would be fixed.

Mortgage payments are not subject to a sales tax, etc.
Why not? Is buying a house not a sale, subject to a sales tax? If you wanted to tweak it, you could put a limit on how much a home is taxed. For example, allow one home to be tax free or only tax on every dollar over a certain amount.

Comment: Re:Solution (Score 1) 405

Most states do this. Back when I was a checker at a grocery store about 30 years ago, we had to learn what food is taxed and what food is not. For example:
"Juice" products, those that contain nothing but fruit or vegetable juice, are tax free.
Products labeled "drink" or "punch" are taxable.
All non-processed food was non-taxable.
Anything you cook at home was non-taxable. This includes frozen meals such as TV Dinners or frozen pizza.
Canned goods were non-taxed.
Potato chips, candy, and other "junk" food is taxable, (I think).
Anything served cooked and ready to eat, such as a hamburger or bucket of chicken is taxable.

Not that we worry about it much as it is all handled by the computer anyway.

Comment: Re:Solution (Score 1) 405

Except that the government will just increase taxes on other common goods to make up for the shortfall.
So? Low income people still spend a lower percentage on their income on those "common goods" than the wealthy.
You are also missing out on the idea that capital gains will be taxed at the same rate as income. For that matter, all income will taxed at the same rate, so even if you work "under the table", you will still pay taxes.

With a "flat tax," there isn't any way around that issue.
There are lots of ways around the issue.
You could tweak the system further. For example, allow a person to own one home tax free. All additional homes will have a sales tax levied on the sale. You could also charge a different rate on luxury items such as yachts and luxury cars.

Comment: Re:Solution (Score 3, Interesting) 405

Think of it this way; if you make $24,000 a year, a 20% tax that reduces your income to $18,000 a year is a much greater burden than it is to someone who makes $200,000 a year and has their income reduced to $150,000 a year.

Good! Those making $24,000/yr will finally understand that government money is not free. Then you won't have the problem of people who don't pay taxes voting to raise the tax rate on those that do. Also, if you make $24,000/yr, most of your money is going to food and rent, both of which can be made to be non-taxable.

A sales tax is still going to a progressive tax since things like food, school supplies, and other absolute necessities won't be taxed at all. See, people only spend so much money on necessities, no matter how much they make. Sure, a billionaire might spend $5 million on a house, but his grocery budget is not going to be 50x more than the guy who spent $100K on a house. So low income people will spend a larger percentage of their income on non-taxed products, meaning they will pay a lower tax rate than the guy who eats out twice a day.

Comment: Re:Corporate taxes (Score 3, Interesting) 405

Or you could just do a federal sales tax. Everyone pays, including corporations, so everyone has skin in the game. No loopholes. No moving out of the country to avoid paying your share. No April 15. No tax forms. No deductions or credits. Everyone knows exactly what they are paying. Everything purchased is taxed, period.

Comment: Re:What will it take? (Score 1) 302

by ArcherB (#47804049) Attached to: Study: Antarctic Sea-Level Rising Faster Than Global Rate

(sigh)
This is the comment I was responding to:
Think of it this way: Imagine the entire planet heated up by 20C, we wouldn't expect to see any permanent ice outside of Antarctica. (The North Pole might get some seasonal ice, but the much warmer oceans would melt it fairly quickly.) Now, with all of the oceans that much warmer, think how much additional water vapor would make it into the atmosphere. When the additional water vapor ends up over the South Pole, it will be cold enough for it to freeze and fall as snow. As the snow accumulates, it compacts into ice and we end up with a LOT more ice at the South Pole.

So: Less ice everywhere but Antarctica due to global warming, but a lot more ice in Antarctica due to global warming.

But the point is, when there was LESS ice, it was because of global warming. Now that there is MORE ice, it's because of global warming, per the original comment I replied to.

Comment: Re:What will it take? (Score 1) 302

by ArcherB (#47803763) Attached to: Study: Antarctic Sea-Level Rising Faster Than Global Rate

Yes. There is less ice in some areas due to global warming and more ice in other areas due to global warming.

OK. Maybe you should tell all the scientist this. Be sure to copy Algore as well.
See, they seem to think that the first thing to go is the polar ice. That's why they keep measuring it. See, a few years ago, a lot of the ice melted, and we were told that it was because of global warming. Now the ice is back and growing, and we are told it's because of global warming.

And that is my entire point. No matter what the symptoms are, it's always a symptom of global warming.

Also, if it's colder in Antarctica and warmer in Hawaii, that's not really a sign of global warming. That's a sign of global nothing because the average temperature remains constant.

Comment: Re:What will it take? (Score 1) 302

by ArcherB (#47800725) Attached to: Study: Antarctic Sea-Level Rising Faster Than Global Rate

So much freshwater from melting glaciers that sea level isn't even level anymore, and some people still don't want to believe there might be a climate problem.

(I don't mean the people who question how to address the problem - that's still legitimately an open question - or the severity of the problem, I mean the people still in denial that there's a problem at all.)

So if there's less ice, it's because of global warming. But if there's more ice, it's because of global warming.

Just curious, if global warming were not a thing, what would the ice caps be doing?

Comment: Re:We need faster-than-light travel (Score 3, Insightful) 66

OK, so we build a ship that can take us anywhere in a reasonable amount of time. Then what? What's the point without a destination?

Right now, our technical ability allows us to detect planets that may be capable of harboring life. Why don't we go ahead and do what we can do rather than sulking over the fact that we can't do more? Once the day comes when we can actually go there, we'll do that. Until then, let's do what we can, which is detection.

Our business in life is not to succeed but to continue to fail in high spirits. -- Robert Louis Stevenson

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