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Comment: Re:A million is easy (Score 1) 447

by Dahamma (#46783279) Attached to: Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

It's going to be hard to follow the S&P 500 index during the great depression since it was STARTED in 1957.

And if you go back that far it actually averages about 10.8%.

But that's the whole POINT of this thread. Ignore the short term volatility and look long term. There really is no indication that it's much different today than it was 30 years ago or that "the growth is over". Seriously, go look at the actual numbers before you state these "facts", not only are they easily found, it's one of the most heavily analyzed aspects of the entire stock market.

Comment: Re:perception (Score 1) 316

I never said Federal alone (CA state taxes are 9% @ 70k), and never said net taxes. Obviously we are talking about gross tax rate, because capital gains are income taxes as well, and thus subject to the same deductions. The clear fact is middle class wage earners are paying a much higher tax rate than wealthy investors. The rich have pretty much figured out how to defeat the "progressive" tax system.

Comment: Re:Capital gains plus corporate income (Score 1) 316

But that's completely untrue for most of the money made from the stock market. Only dividends could even possibly work that way, and given that dividends a) usually only pay a few percent that's NOT how wealthy people are getting 10-15%+ return on their investments, and b) are not generally based on the gross profits but set based on the price of the stock as a way to give back cash flow.

If you buy a stock, it doubles, you sell it and pay 15% capital gains tax, NONE of that profit had ANYTHING to do with corporate income tax. Same goes for shorting a stock or trading in derivatives, which is where the real money is made.

And besides, it's a fairly spurious argument in the first place, since employees paid from corporations, service workers paid by those employees, sales taxes paid when you use your income already taxed, etc all work the same way. Taxes are not in general a one time fee taken from some pile of money, it's really a tax on the exchange and flow of money, so why should this be any different?

Comment: Re:perception (Score 4, Informative) 316

Ronald Reagan's tax breaks resulted in increased government revenue, is the thing. Voodoo economics actually worked

Increased revenue but MASSIVELY INCREASED spending. So, no, it did not work at all and is still the current model of pretty much every administration after his (Republican and Democrat) as to how to spend way more money than they take in for short term political gain over long term solutions.

Claiming the tax breaks themselves results in increased revenue is horribly conflating correlation with causation. It's much more likely the increased revenue was in fact due to the increased deficit spending, of course.

Comment: Re:perception (Score 3, Insightful) 316

Actually, I don't agree that food, shelter, educations, and health care are in any way *rights*. I see rights as restrictions that should not be placed on an individual by others. Rights are the basic humans conditions that the government should leave alone and/or protect, depending on the situation.

But that doesn't mean I don't think there are *obligations*. If you have an extreme excess of wealth and no interest in helping others in severe need, you are morally if not financially bankrupt. The fact that many people in this situation seem to pretend to follow "Christian" or other religious practices is even worse, and at some point hypocritical.

I agree with you that private charity will never cover the "need" if the need is in fact just basic income inequality. Private charities do a great job solving issues like diseases because they focus on popular trends or cross-cutting concerns that affect everyone equally. But being poor isn't likely to afflict the child of a wealthy person, and that's where collective pooling of resources come in, ie. taxes - which is where the US system of regressive taxes and selective charities is failing so badly. If you make $70k a year in salary you will pay 30%+ in taxes, but if you make $100M a year from investments you will pay 15% (eh, and yeah, 15% if you are an idiot). Hey, even without all of the tax shelters if you feel generous/guilty and want to donate to a charity, it can be much less! More to homeless albino 3 legged dogs, less to homeless veterans...

Comment: Re:A million is easy (Score 1) 447

by Dahamma (#46777075) Attached to: Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

It's long term, not short term. He's right, the S&P has earned just over 10% a year averaged over the last 30 years. The point of the 401(k) is to let it sit in a conservative investment long term until you need it, and it has historically been a great retirement vehicle if you do exactly what he said...

Comment: Re:I will be a millionaire. (Score 1) 447

by Dahamma (#46777073) Attached to: Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

Except long term real estate in desirable areas has proven to continue to rise despite whatever short term policies like you describe may slow it down a bit.

When he retires in 30+ years his home will undoubtedly be worth more than a million in today's dollars, and I can't even imagine how much it will be worth in non-inflation adjusted dollars (which is what a lot of people have pointed out - "millionaire" is going to be a solidly middle class by then).

Comment: Re:Helping the poor (Score 2) 316

Thank Ronald Reagan for that. He basically killed spending for mental health (and put it all into the military, yay) which resulted in hundreds of thousands of mentally ill people being released from hospitals and institutions and onto the street. It's telling that Republicans think of Reagan as their best president in the last 50 years when honestly his policies are in fact the origin of much of the Federal deficit, health care disasters, and income inequality issues we see in the US today.

They think he "ended the Cold War." But basically he outspent the Soviet Union in the short term by jeopardizing the future of the US in the long term. Now ironically, in the current geopolitical situation China is dominating monetary and human capital and Russia doesn't have the untenable debt and has a huge income source from recent oil and gas exploration, so they may end up "winning" in the long run after all.

Comment: Re:Stopping a billionaire's car (Score 1) 325

by Dahamma (#46732249) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

It's Finland that is indeed known for that and as a Finn, I don't consider it crazy at all - especially if you know how it works

If you are doing 180mph in a 60mph (sorry, I'm American - that's like 300 in a 100 kph ;) I totally agree with you, in fact put them in jail as that would be a much more effective deterrent than money. But if you are doing 45kph in a 35kph you should not be paying a 6 figure (in any currency) fine no matter your income, that's just idiotic.

Comment: Re:Automation (Score 1) 325

by Dahamma (#46732171) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

Do you not think that the database would have those particular license plates listed so that no tickets would be issued?

No, of course they wouldn't. The whole point is that it's an off the record system, endorsed by the union and not the government. Once it's on the record there is a paper trail and instead of silly slashdot conspiracies you get federal indictments.

Comment: Re:Stopping a billionaire's car (Score 1) 325

by Dahamma (#46732127) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

How can the ticket depend on income? How do they know how much you're making? Do they look at your tax return? What if you're a tourist from America or somewhere? They don't file tax returns with the Swedish government, so how do they know how much to charge?

Actually, as is usual on the Internet, there is some truth and some bullshit in that post.

The sensational examples were a Swedish billionaire speeding in Finland (Sweden does not actually have this crazy fine), and if you are a billionaire, yes, people know how much you are worth. The other example was another billionaire driving *185 mph* on a speed controlled road in Switzerland, which pretty much anywhere in the Western world will get you imprisoned, at which point they are fairly free to make even a rich person miserable until he pays up.

Comment: Re:selective enforcement at it's finest. (Score 1, Interesting) 325

by Dahamma (#46732093) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

You're right though, I have no numbers to back up my theory, but... ...FFS, cut the 90 year old Pearl Harbor veteran some slack, 'eh?

If you are a 90 year old Pearl Harbor veteran, you are a goddamn hero, no one denies that. But if you are still driving, FFS, get OFF THE ROAD before you ruin it an kill someone.

Comment: Re:Tax filing (Score 1) 50

by m.ducharme (#46719169) Attached to: Canada Halts Online Tax Returns In Wake of Heartbleed

I'll concede the point on personal taxes, for the most simple solutions, but once you start adding in business income, corporate taxes, and the like, the complexity level goes way up. And if you happen to run a business in an HST jurisdiction? Forget about it. Many tax lawyers haven't yet figured that shit out.

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