I.O.U.S.A. (2008)

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Still@jones's picture
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Just finished watching this documentary. Overall, I thought it was very good. But, I wish it went into the difference between the government borrowing money as an investment in our economy. And, borrowing money because you issued a tax cut and did not reduce government spending. I did finish it feeling that health care reform and green energy initiatives are the right thing to be doing at this time. I'd say it is worthwhile for anyone in this industry to watch just because it gives a clear overview of our national debt and its effects.

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There's also some great stuff in the extra features...some good quotes from W. Buffett, Greenspan, etc. 

BerkshireBull's picture
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I've seen it.  I agreed with some parts and disagreed with some.  It was a while ago and I've forgotten what parts I liked and didn't like though!

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I agree...not perfect, but at least some good information. The bonus features on the DVD are worthwhile too. Some interesting stuff on taxes, I especially liked this one by Buffett:Take two people, you and someone else. One has to go to Bangladesh (and will pay no taxes there); And one stays in the US and pays a fixed percent income tax. To decide this tax, we have a bidding war and whoever bids the highest percent, gets to stay in the US. The other goes to Bangladesch. You can be certain this percent will be higher than what you currently pay in taxes.

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Still@jones wrote: I agree...not perfect, but at least some good information. The bonus features on the DVD are worthwhile too. Some interesting stuff on taxes, I especially liked this one by Buffett:Take two people, you and someone else. One has to go to Bangladesh (and will pay no taxes there); And one stays in the US and pays a fixed percent income tax. To decide this tax, we have a bidding war and whoever bids the highest percent, gets to stay in the US. The other goes to Bangladesch. You can be certain this percent will be higher than what you currently pay in taxes.
 
Buffett's always been a fan of higher taxes. Of course his money is largely in tax frees.....

alwaysaguest's picture
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Still@jones wrote:I did finish it feeling that health care reform and green energy initiatives are the right thing to be doing at this time.
 

In my humble opinion both of those, in their current forms in the Congress, are jokes that need to be defeated. Real health care reform would employ market forces and increase genuine competition, not feature a disguised attempt to build a path to a single payer system.
The “green initiatives” for the most part is spending money on pie in the sky energy sources that won’t be ready for prime time for decades while refusing to move the country towards energy independence today with sources and technology already on hand.
Both are fine examples of bread and circuses polices that do a fine job of giving the desired voting blocks a warm and fuzzy that will bring them back to the voting booth while accomplishing little aside from adding to the debit our kids and grandkids will have to pay off.

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alwaysaguest wrote:In my humble opinion both of those, in their current forms in the Congress, are jokes that need to be defeated. Real health care reform would employ market forces and increase genuine competition, not feature a disguised attempt to build a path to a single payer system.
The “green initiatives” for the most part is spending money on pie in the sky energy sources that won’t be ready for prime time for decades while refusing to move the country towards energy independence today with sources and technology already on hand.
Both are fine examples of bread and circuses polices that do a fine job of giving the desired voting blocks a warm and fuzzy that will bring them back to the voting booth while accomplishing little aside from adding to the debit our kids and grandkids will have to pay off.Even though I was only commenting on the importance of addressing these issues, I would like to add that Your "green initiatives" comment is not true. Most can be implemented effectively today. Drill baby, drill,Stillps: healthcare is a clusterf**k, but what do you expect from politicians (also, pharmaceutical companies, old people, doctors, hospitals and CVS).pps: Buffett said he pays 15% tax; slightly less than the woman who cleans his office. He believed that is unfair (which I agree). He said the reason it is this way is because investors have better lobbyists than office cleaners.

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Still@jones wrote:

alwaysaguest wrote:In my humble opinion both of those, in their current forms in the Congress, are jokes that need to be defeated. Real health care reform would employ market forces and increase genuine competition, not feature a disguised attempt to build a path to a single payer system.
The “green initiatives” for the most part is spending money on pie in the sky energy sources that won’t be ready for prime time for decades while refusing to move the country towards energy independence today with sources and technology already on hand.
Both are fine examples of bread and circuses polices that do a fine job of giving the desired voting blocks a warm and fuzzy that will bring them back to the voting booth while accomplishing little aside from adding to the debit our kids and grandkids will have to pay off.Even though I was only commenting on the importance of addressing these issues, I would like to add that Your "green initiatives" comment is not true. Most can be implemented effectively today. Drill baby, drill,Stillps: healthcare is a clusterf**k, but what do you expect from politicians (also, pharmaceutical companies, old people, doctors, hospitals and CVS).pps: Buffett said he pays 15% tax; slightly less than the woman who cleans his office. He believed that is unfair (which I agree). He said the reason it is this way is because investors have better lobbyists than office cleaners. Who gets more benefits from the government, Buffet, or the lady who cleans his office?

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Yeah, this is one palce I have to politely disagree with Buffett.  Paying 15% on a several million in income is a lot different than 15% on 45K.  So in reality, poor people get WAY more benefits than wealthy people.  How about Social Security?  Your benefit if you made 35K your whole life is going to replace a much bigger % of your income than if you made $1mm a year.

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Morean & B24. Based on this logic, do you think we should have a flat-tax based on dollar value? Everyone pays the same amount. Something like, everyone has to pay $24k/year.

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Still@jones wrote: Morean & B24. Based on this logic, do you think we should have a flat-tax based on dollar value? Everyone pays the same amount. Something like, everyone has to pay $24k/year.

I am not (although that is the most fair method). But there is no reason to have the percentage increase as you move up in brackets.

A flat tax based on percentages is fine. Or a national sales tax.

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Moraen wrote: Still@jones wrote: Morean & B24. Based on this logic, do you think we should have a flat-tax based on dollar value? Everyone pays the same amount. Something like, everyone has to pay $24k/year.

I am not (although that is the most fair method). But there is no reason to have the percentage increase as you move up in brackets.

A flat tax based on percentages is fine. Or a national sales tax.
I agree it is the most fair method. The downside is McDonalds would have to pay $40k-$50k/year to get people to show up for work. Flat rate is best for you & I and best for people who inherited millions of unearned dollars (like Steve Forbes) but I don't think it does enough to encourage growth in our economy. I would like to see the US have a tax code that encourages an income distribution similar to Japan (almost linear). This would certainly be best for the Jones reps...I believe it would be best for our country.

alwaysaguest's picture
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Still@jones wrote: Your "green initiatives" comment is not true. Most can be implemented effectively today.
Which ones can be implemented today that genuinely move us towards energy independence and end the need for more nuclear power and increased domestic production of fossil fuels as the Whitehouse claims?  And don't even get me started on "green jobs".
Still@jones wrote: pps: Buffett said he pays 15% tax; slightly less than the woman who cleans his office.
He says that, but few believe his numbers, and since Warren never shows his work, he's a no-go in my book.
http://www.cato-at-liberty.org/2007/06/29/warren-buffets-faulty-tax-math/
 

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Still@jones wrote:  I would like to see the US have a tax code that encourages an income distribution similar to Japan (almost linear). This would certainly be best for the Jones reps...I believe it would be best for our country.
 
Why is income distribution a matter for the government? Isn't what's really important the lifestyle the people at the very bottom can attain and not the so called "gap" between them and the richest?
 
If the poorest person in the US earned $100,000 in current dollars and the richest earned severl thousand times more than that would that be a problem?

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Still@jones wrote:
Moraen wrote: Still@jones wrote: Morean & B24. Based on this logic, do you think we should have a flat-tax based on dollar value? Everyone pays the same amount. Something like, everyone has to pay $24k/year.

I am not (although that is the most fair method). But there is no reason to have the percentage increase as you move up in brackets.

A flat tax based on percentages is fine. Or a national sales tax.
I agree it is the most fair method. The downside is McDonalds would have to pay $40k-$50k/year to get people to show up for work. Flat rate is best for you & I and best for people who inherited millions of unearned dollars (like Steve Forbes) but I don't think it does enough to encourage growth in our economy. I would like to see the US have a tax code that encourages an income distribution similar to Japan (almost linear). This would certainly be best for the Jones reps...I believe it would be best for our country.

Explain to me the logic of how a flat rate would not work.

I make $100000 at 15%, I pay 15000 in taxes. I make $1 million, I pay $150,000 in taxes. Why would that not encourage growth? Japan's system is progressive, like our current idiotic method.

If the tax bracket jumps from 35% to 40% at 300k, why would I not try to have my business pay me just under 300k? Seems like the system stifles growth in a progressive system.

It is not the government's job to play wealth redistribution games. Why should I have to pay more for the privilege of living here if I make more. Simply ridiculous.   

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iceco1d wrote: Huh?  Federal tax brackets are marginal.  If the tax rates jumped from 35% to 40% over $300K, only the amount you make OVER $300K is taxed @ 40%.  Then again, I'm guessing I'm just reading this example incorrectly, and you already knew that...

Oversimplification (bad oversimplification - I hate taxes) on my part. You didn't read it wrong, I wrote it wrong. The fact remains that a progressive tax punishes success.

Moraen's picture
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You mean, do I believe there is an optimal rate of taxation? Unfortunately no. Empirical evidence so far is inconclusive in the U.S. And anywhere else where the principles are implemented (Balkans) there is not enough data.

What if our system was needs-based? Just spitballing here and there is no real theory behind this. For instance, we need x-amount of dollars to provide the best military in the world. How much tax revenue do we need for that next year? And so on.

Moraen's picture
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Dang ice - I answer your question and you leave.

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Moraen wrote: Still@jones wrote: Moraen wrote: Still@jones wrote: Morean & B24. Based on this logic, do you think we should have a flat-tax based on dollar value? Everyone pays the same amount. Something like, everyone has to pay $24k/year. I am not (although that is the most fair method). But there is no reason to have the percentage increase as you move up in brackets. A flat tax based on percentages is fine. Or a national sales tax. I agree it is the most fair method. The downside is McDonalds would have to pay $40k-$50k/year to get people to show up for work. Flat rate is best for you & I and best for people who inherited millions of unearned dollars (like Steve Forbes) but I don't think it does enough to encourage growth in our economy. I would like to see the US have a tax code that encourages an income distribution similar to Japan (almost linear). This would certainly be best for the Jones reps...I believe it would be best for our country. Explain to me the logic of how a flat rate would not work. I make $100000 at 15%, I pay 15000 in taxes. I make $1 million, I pay $150,000 in taxes. Why would that not encourage growth? Japan's system is progressive, like our current idiotic method. If the tax bracket jumps from 35% to 40% at 300k, why would I not try to have my business pay me just under 300k? Seems like the system stifles growth in a progressive system. It is not the government's job to play wealth redistribution games. Why should I have to pay more for the privilege of living here if I make more. Simply ridiculous.   

 
Try 43-50% on income over $100k (approximately)

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It was all hypothetical. Was trying (not very well) to make a point.

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#1 Most important - I hate taxes too! I believe we should have all taxes (any income source that supports the government - including parking meters/tickets - you get the point); all government spending should be capped at 25%.#2 I believe our economy is a game. Of course, I would like the government to set up this game so that I win...but if they don't, I want them to set up this game so that our country wins. #3 A 15% flat tax would be good for me...and I would support it because it is better than what we have now. (Note: the average American currently pays about 53% of their income in taxes.) The problem with the flat rate is that it favors Ultra-HNW individuals and families.

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I'd like to see a 15% flat tax and a death tax equal to your age (max at 95%).
Possibly lower the gift tax, although 35% will work.

 
I do not believe an inheritance (especially a tax free inheritance) is an entitlement.

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Inheritance should be up to the one leaving it.  Of course, it is not an entitlement.  But what gives the government the right to steal the wealth I have accumulated over my lifetime.  What if I want to provide my family with a comfortable life after working hard?  Leaving a legacy.  What will the government do with the money that my child won't?  Likely waste it like a crackhead.  If you could put a spendthrift policy on the government, that would work if you had no children.I would rather set up an organization that provided for causes I believe in.  I don't need my hard-earned money going to fund pay raises for Congress.

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Billy Mays wrote:I'd like to see a 15% flat tax and a death tax equal to your age (max at 95%).
Possibly lower the gift tax, although 35% will work.

 
I do not believe an inheritance (especially a tax free inheritance) is an entitlement.

 
 
So you work your entire life, paying taxes on all earnings as you go, manage your money to the point that you can leave some behind, and you think the government is entitled to it?  If this were the case, why not spend like a madman towards the end of your life and finish out on welfare?  No unintended consequences there.

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Anyone on this site who hates the inheritance tax is nothing more than a republican party lackey. We are all working for our money. the inheritance tax is intended to hit trust fund babies. People who don't really work and don't deserve their wealth. Like the Kennedys.
I only believe it should be tied to age to give a reprive to people who die an early death before they can plan for their future. If you are worth $100MM and your children are 40, they've already received all the benefit they deserve. Tax that sh*t at 75%!

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Billy Mays wrote: Anyone on this site who hates the inheritance tax is nothing more than a republican party lackey. We are all working for our money. the inheritance tax is intended to hit trust fund babies. People who don't really work and don't deserve their wealth. Like the Kennedys.
I only believe it should be tied to age to give a reprive to people who die an early death before they can plan for their future. If you are worth $100MM and your children are 40, they've already received all the benefit they deserve. Tax that sh*t at 75%!

Why should it be taxed? Why is the government (or even The People) entitled to that money?

You say that if my children are 40, they've received all of the benefit they deserve, what sort of benefit does the government deserve, who have been taking 30+% of my income for that past 70 years?

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Imagine a big saver: They finish college in 1964 at age 21 and take a job making $8,000/year (equal to $50,000/year in 2009 dollars). They save 10% of their income every year and invests it at 8% in the stock market.
 
They are a hard worker and get 10% raises every year from 21 to 45 years old.
From 45 to 65 years old they get 5% raises. 
 
In 2009, they retire at age 65. Their final year of work, they made $209,000 and, like every other year, they saved 10% and spent the rest (better than most Americans)
 
This person would have saved approximately $1.3MM - Add to that a $600,000 home, $450,000 vacation home and some jewelry and they still aren't even close to the $3.5 Million dollar Inheritance tax.
 
The inheritance tax targets dynasties...not hard working Americans. It is better for our country if we have a tax policy designed to break up dynasties. It is stupid to think otherwise.

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Billy Mays wrote:Imagine a big saver: They finish college in 1964 at age 21 and take a job making $8,000/year (equal to $50,000/year in 2009 dollars). They save 10% of their income every year and invests it at 8% in the stock market.
 
They are a hard worker and get 10% raises every year from 21 to 45 years old.
From 45 to 65 years old they get 5% raises. 
 
In 2009, they retire at age 65. Their final year of work, they made $209,000 and, like every other year, they saved 10% and spent the rest (better than most Americans)
 
This person would have saved approximately $1.3MM - Add to that a $600,000 home, $450,000 vacation home and some jewelry and they still aren't even close to the $3.5 Million dollar Inheritance tax.
 
The inheritance tax targets dynasties...not hard working Americans. It is better for our country if we have a tax policy designed to break up dynasties. It is stupid to think otherwise.

 
 
So only the very successful should have their money stolen by the government.  The HNW people are the ones paying the bulk of taxes while they are alive, and you think that after years of paying taxes as they earn it, now they should pay taxes again on what they were able to keep?  Why wait for death?  Why not just put a cap on the amount of wealth you can acquire at any one time in your life? 

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Billy Mays wrote:Imagine a big saver: They finish college in 1964 at age 21 and take a job making $8,000/year (equal to $50,000/year in 2009 dollars). They save 10% of their income every year and invests it at 8% in the stock market.
 
They are a hard worker and get 10% raises every year from 21 to 45 years old.
From 45 to 65 years old they get 5% raises. 
 
In 2009, they retire at age 65. Their final year of work, they made $209,000 and, like every other year, they saved 10% and spent the rest (better than most Americans)
 
This person would have saved approximately $1.3MM - Add to that a $600,000 home, $450,000 vacation home and some jewelry and they still aren't even close to the $3.5 Million dollar Inheritance tax.
 
The inheritance tax targets dynasties...not hard working Americans. It is better for our country if we have a tax policy designed to break up dynasties. It is stupid to think otherwise. Are uh Socialist? Maybe ya should move ta China, where wealth iz mo' evenly distributedYa'll is mad stupid.

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Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 

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Billy Mays wrote:Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 

 
You are missing the one tenant of capitalism that is always true, money will find it's way to those that earn it.  If you are talking about trust fund babies, they will blow the money, therefore redistributing it to it's rightful place.  What you are talking about however is having politicians steal rightfully earned money to give to those who have not earned it at the discretion and whim of the politicians.  This is as far from capitalism as you can get.

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Billy Mays wrote:Imagine a big saver: They finish college in 1964 at age 21 and take a job making $8,000/year (equal to $50,000/year in 2009 dollars). They save 10% of their income every year and invests it at 8% in the stock market.
 
They are a hard worker and get 10% raises every year from 21 to 45 years old.
From 45 to 65 years old they get 5% raises. 
 
In 2009, they retire at age 65. Their final year of work, they made $209,000 and, like every other year, they saved 10% and spent the rest (better than most Americans)
 
This person would have saved approximately $1.3MM - Add to that a $600,000 home, $450,000 vacation home and some jewelry and they still aren't even close to the $3.5 Million dollar Inheritance tax.
 
The inheritance tax targets dynasties...not hard working Americans. It is better for our country if we have a tax policy designed to break up dynasties. It is stupid to think otherwise.

If this person dies in 2011, it's only $1,000,000 that is shielded.   Don't forget about the states taking their share.
 
 

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Jebediah wrote:Billy Mays wrote:Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 

 
You are missing the one tenant of capitalism that is always true, money will find it's way to those that earn it.  If you are talking about trust fund babies, they will blow the money, therefore redistributing it to it's rightful place.  What you are talking about however is having politicians steal rightfully earned money to give to those who have not earned it at the discretion and whim of the politicians.  This is as far from capitalism as you can get.
 
Most HNW individuals are small business owners. A large percentage of these are Doctors, Lawyers, Accountants, and Professional Engineers. All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. How can you agree with states artificially inflating the salaries of these professionals and disagree with the state taxing their wealth after their death?  
 
Do you also believe patents should be perpetual? Should you be paying Edison's great-great-grandchildren for every lightbulb you use?
 
Do you homework and stop watching Fox News!!! The Inheritance Death Tax is one of the most important taxes in our country.
 
 
 
 

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Billy Mays wrote:Jebediah wrote:Billy Mays wrote:Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 

 
You are missing the one tenant of capitalism that is always true, money will find it's way to those that earn it.  If you are talking about trust fund babies, they will blow the money, therefore redistributing it to it's rightful place.  What you are talking about however is having politicians steal rightfully earned money to give to those who have not earned it at the discretion and whim of the politicians.  This is as far from capitalism as you can get.
 
Most HNW individuals are small business owners. A large percentage of these are Doctors, Lawyers, Accountants, and Professional Engineers. All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. How can you agree with states artificially inflating the salaries of these professionals and disagree with the state taxing their wealth after their death?  
 
Do you also believe patents should be perpetual? Should you be paying Edison's great-great-grandchildren for every lightbulb you use?
 
Do you homework and stop watching Fox News!!! The Inheritance Death Tax is one of the most important taxes in our country.
 
 
 
 Billy, you did not answer my question.  Why does the government have a right to the money I earned, even after I died?  Why should they be the wealth re-distribution machine?  Let's say I earned over my lifetime $100 million dollars.  Let's further assume I paid taxes of about 48% (that's probably about right, maybe more).  I now have $52 million dollars in my checking account.  Let's say I spent $10 million.  I die at 80.  The government takes $33.6 million dollars., leaving $8.4 million dollars to my heirs.That means that over my lifetime, from birth to death, the government has taxed me at 81%!  Nobody is up Rush's butt here.  But you are clearly in the tank for socialism.  The inheritance (death) tax is an abomination.  What makes them more responsible than my daughter?  What if my daughter decided that she would use that money to set up a non-profit that helps under privileged kids get medicines?  Or sets up a place that helps veterans get back on their feet after being in war?  Or battered women?  Business is far more efficient than government at doing that.  Just because there are trust fund babies who waste money, doesn't mean I shouldn't be given the choice to how MY money is spent.For ever dollar the government takes, more than 70 cents gets wasted. 

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Moraen wrote: Billy Mays wrote:Jebediah wrote:Billy Mays wrote:Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 

 
You are missing the one tenant of capitalism that is always true, money will find it's way to those that earn it.  If you are talking about trust fund babies, they will blow the money, therefore redistributing it to it's rightful place.  What you are talking about however is having politicians steal rightfully earned money to give to those who have not earned it at the discretion and whim of the politicians.  This is as far from capitalism as you can get.
 
Most HNW individuals are small business owners. A large percentage of these are Doctors, Lawyers, Accountants, and Professional Engineers. All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. How can you agree with states artificially inflating the salaries of these professionals and disagree with the state taxing their wealth after their death?  
 
Do you also believe patents should be perpetual? Should you be paying Edison's great-great-grandchildren for every lightbulb you use?
 
Do you homework and stop watching Fox News!!! The Inheritance Death Tax is one of the most important taxes in our country.
 
 
 
 
Billy, you did not answer my question.  Why does the government have a right to the money I earned, even after I died?  Why should they be the wealth re-distribution machine?  Let's say I earned over my lifetime $100 million dollars.  Let's further assume I paid taxes of about 48% (that's probably about right, maybe more).  I now have $52 million dollars in my checking account.  Let's say I spent $10 million.  I die at 80.  The government takes $33.6 million dollars., leaving $8.4 million dollars to my heirs.That means that over my lifetime, from birth to death, the government has taxed me at 81%!  Nobody is up Rush's butt here.  But you are clearly in the tank for socialism.  The inheritance (death) tax is an abomination.  What makes them more responsible than my daughter?  What if my daughter decided that she would use that money to set up a non-profit that helps under privileged kids get medicines?  Or sets up a place that helps veterans get back on their feet after being in war?  Or battered women?  Business is far more efficient than government at doing that.  Just because there are trust fund babies who waste money, doesn't mean I shouldn't be given the choice to how MY money is spent.For ever dollar the government takes, more than 70 cents gets wasted. 
 
I don't know if this is an official stat or not, but I believe it. What happened to the "I am going to go through the national budget line-by-line and cut out waste" thing that Obama was talking about? I voted Obama, and don't think he is doing a bad job, I just am damn sick and tired of seeing beaurocrats waste my money on stuff that no reasonable person would spend money on.

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Moraen wrote:Billy, you did not answer my question.  Why does the government have a right to the money I earned, even after I died?  Why should they be the wealth re-distribution machine?  Let's say I earned over my lifetime $100 million dollars.  Let's further assume I paid taxes of about 48% (that's probably about right, maybe more).  I now have $52 million dollars in my checking account.  Let's say I spent $10 million.  I die at 80.  The government takes $33.6 million dollars., leaving $8.4 million dollars to my heirs.That means that over my lifetime, from birth to death, the government has taxed me at 81%!  Nobody is up Rush's butt here.  But you are clearly in the tank for socialism.  The inheritance (death) tax is an abomination.  What makes them more responsible than my daughter?  What if my daughter decided that she would use that money to set up a non-profit that helps under privileged kids get medicines?  Or sets up a place that helps veterans get back on their feet after being in war?  Or battered women?  Business is far more efficient than government at doing that.  Just because there are trust fund babies who waste money, doesn't mean I shouldn't be given the choice to how MY money is spent.For ever dollar the government takes, more than 70 cents gets wasted. 

 
The government has the "right" do do whatever they believe is best for the country. They can issue inheritance taxes or kill people. Government can do whatever the f*** they want - and they have the lawyers to make it all "legal".   
 
Government absolutely will not spend your money wisely. Like always, they will waste most of it. That's just the way it is. If you want it to be spent wisely, set up a charitable trust before you die. Your kids can earn an income working for this charity until the funds run out.
 
I am absolutely not a socialist.
 
You didn't respond to my question: Should you be paying royalties to Thomas Edison's great-great-grandchildren. This is the foundation to my arguement that your children to not have an absolute right to the money you earned. It sounds like you belive you should.

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I never said I believed in patents extending beyond the life of their creator.  But 17 year patents could be extended.  Intellectual property should be protected.  What about the formula for Coke?  Because it is a corporation and a perpetual entity, why do they get to protect the formula for Coke?  I can set up a charitable trust, true.  But I shouldn't have to.  If I'm done with the money and my kid wants to do something else with it, and I have bequeathed it to her, then she should be able to do what she wants with it without being taxed ridiculous amounts.It was money I earned.Let the government take what they want, but make it legal FIRST.And if I don't like it, I can leave. 

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The "formula" for coke is not protected - only their trademarks. You are allowed to sell a copy of coke (if you can figure out what it is); you just can't call it coke, coca-cola, or use their "ribbon".
I belive intellectual property, like your estate, should be subject to different rules over time. 17 years for patents - a lifetime for your estate. I like that both these time limits exist. I believe it is better for our economy.
 
I agree 17 years may be too short for a patent in today's world; but this is the way it is.
I also believe $1MM is too low; and 40% is too low. ($3.5MM is probably a good level - and, as said previously, I'd love to see a death tax equal to your age - 95% max.)
 
I don't understand what you mean by "but make it legal FIRST"

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I believe the reason the formula for coke isn't protected is b/c they don't want to "patent" it which would require revealing the recipe so they could obtain the patent in the first place. 

Also sweet name, Billy Mays

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Ok. Forget Coke.

Keep your hands off of my money. There is no way that the government wasting so much money helps the economy. There is no argument in the world that would work for that.

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Billy Mays wrote:
I belive intellectual property, like your estate, should be subject to different rules over time. 17 years for patents - a lifetime for your estate. I like that both these time limits exist. I believe it is better for our economy.
 
How about politicians having time limits. It should be a privilage for someone to be selected by their community, state, country etc. Not a damn life long career. Run two-four terms, either is fine with me, then move up or move on.

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“the inheritance tax is intended to hit trust fund babies. “
It doesn’t do that. You may have noticed we still have trust fund babies. The tax hits people who are asset “rich” and cash “poor” because they lack the liquidity to buy large insurance policies to pay the estate taxes. The only thing that takes wealth out of the hands of the idle rich trust fund babies like the Hiltons and the Kennedys is a few generations without any entrepreneurial ability and drive.
It really sounds to me like you have little real understanding of the reality of the situation.
“People who don't really work and don't deserve their wealth.”
It’s not the government’s place to determine who “deserves” what.
‘The government has the "right" do do whatever they believe is best for the country.’
Tell me you’re joking. Try reading our Constitution, government’s powers are limited by us, the people.
“All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. “
This is complete nonsense.

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Billy Mays wrote:Y'all have your heads shoved so far up Rush Limbaugh's ass that you can't see the real world.
This ain't socialism...this is real capitalism. More players means more competition.
You people need to turn off Fox News and read a little about economics.
 
 
And you need to learn your history.  Until the 20th century the Estate tax was enacted, in various forms, so that the country would have the ability to raise capital to do things like create a Navy (Stamp Tax of 1797) and fight a civil war (Revenue Act of 1862). It wasn't until the War Revenue Act of 1898 that the first rendition of our modern estate tax was created.  You'll remember that time frame as the Industrial Revolution.  Wealth was being transferred from farms and property to business and industry.  The money the government used to get from tariffs and real estate taxes was evaporating.  But yet the wealthy industrialists were pretty much left alone.  So, they created, amidst very heated debate, the War Revenue Act of 1898, which for the first time taxes not the inheritance, but the estate itself.  It was the "social reformers" (read progressives) who were crying foul that the industrial giants were getting wealthy and not paying their fair share.  The difference between these taxes/acts was that they were designed to be temporary.  They were designed to get the country through a rough patch and not kill the federal budget. 
 
This progressive movement (some might call it communism, but progressive is probably more PC) gathered a lot of followers and grew in influence until it culminated with Teddy Roosevelt, a staunch progressive himself, in the White House.  They believed that there were inequalities in wealth in our country.  No kidding.  They also believed that the government had the right to take care of that inequality.  Thus the Estate Tax, Gift Tax, and progressive Income Taxes were born.  Actually, the 16th Amendment created Income Taxes.  The Estate tax was created as a way to fund another war - WW1.  Unfortunately since then it's not been repealed.  Until next year.  And that's temporary. 
 
Today the government uses the Estate tax not as a way to get us over the hump during a rough patch, but to put dollars in the Federal Budget.  I don't believe that was what our founding fathers had in mind when they created the Stamp Tax many years ago. 
 
So, Billy, this isn't capitalism.  It's progressivism.  You're a progressive.  Just like Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, and Woodrow Wilson. 
 
It's not about more competition.  I find it funny that you progressives believe that if there were only a few more dollars spread around that everything would be OK.  Well, the heart of capitalism is that if you have something you can sell to me, be it intellectual property, product, or service and I buy it from you, you make a $.  The more you can do that, the more $$'s you make.  If you don't have any money, you're going to need to convince someone who does that your idea is good and go into business with that person.  That way you both make money.  Then you get more and more people to give you their $$.  If someone can't afford to pay you, then too bad.  They need to get off of their happy butts and figure out a way to make money.  They shouldn't have to rely on you and your money to make money for them.  Chances are if you gave them money they'd piss it away anyway.  Once they figure out how to make money, you make money, and the world keeps turning. 
 
Has nothing to do with Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, or any of the other's on Fox.  They're just the ones who have the pulpit to speak against your ideas.  My fear is that there aren't enough of them.  There are way too many folks who think like you do for my liking.  I'll bet guys like Ben Franklin, George Washington, and Abraham Lincoln are spinning in their graves.    

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Dayum! And that's why I like debating with you Spiff. Glad I wasn't on the wrong side of that argument.

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Spiff,
I'll take being called progressive. But I only favor ideas which I feel will increase the efficiency and competition in our economy. I'd love to be a Republican, but I feel like the party has been hijacked by a bunch of morons. 
I certainly do not believe moving money around will make everything ok. I look at it more as a tempering mechanism.
 
I'm getting the feeling that to argue my point fully would require more space and time than this forum deserves.
 
Nice reply, though.

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alwaysaguest wrote: “All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. “
This is complete nonsense.

You probably believe the Series 7 makes sure only the best become brokers too???

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Billy Mays wrote:alwaysaguest wrote: “All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. “
This is complete nonsense.

You probably believe the Series 7 makes sure only the best become brokers too???
 

Is that supposed to mean something?
 
Tell me you don't really believe the Series 7 exam is manipulated by shadowy government operatives to control the pass rate and thereby hold down the numbers of licensed brokers to fight off competition.

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Billy Mays wrote:
 
I'm getting the feeling that to argue my point fully would require more space and time than this forum deserves.
 
 
 
Yeah, THAT'S the reason that you want to drop the subject..... "space and time" not "I got caught talking out my azz by people who really understand economics and the founding documents that underpin our form of government".

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Billy Mays wrote:alwaysaguest wrote: “All of these professions require passing a state issued examination. States adjust the difficulty of these exams to control the supply of professionals in these fields. This is done to reduce competition and keep salaries high. “
This is complete nonsense.

You probably believe the Series 7 makes sure only the best become brokers too???

 
Judging from your posts, I would say not.

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alwaysaguest wrote:Billy Mays wrote: I'm getting the feeling that to argue my point fully would require more space and time than this forum deserves.
Yeah, THAT'S the reason that you want to drop the subject..... "space and time" not "I got caught talking out my azz by people who really understand economics and the founding documents that underpin our form of government".
 
I know you are wrong if you believe I am talking out of my a$$. Once I realized we were in a broad discussion about domestic policy and taxation and we are going into what Lincoln thinks and the Stamp tax, I felt like I was in a circus. (To be fair, looking back at some of my comments, I'm a clown too!)
 
In the end, I strongly support the death tax and I know I can go on and on about it. Here's just a few more nuggets:
 
I believe the death tax "expands the pie" of our economy. It's not about taking from the rich and giving to the poor; my belief is based on what is best for growing our economy.
I believe people who have to pay the death tax:
 - are more likely to find legal or accounting loopholes to avoid paying taxes (UBS).
 - invest less (percentage of savings) in the US economy.
 - buy less American goods.
 - more likely to invest in "arbitrage opportunities" that have a negative impact on our economy.
 
With our country facing a glut of people dying (baby boomers), it makes sense to raise the death tax. I believe $3.5MM is the right number, politically, and I would expect congress to freeze it at $3.5MM going forward. Creating the illusion that it would actually get repealed was a political move - if Bush really wanted it repealed, why didn't he have the balls to repeal it during his term?

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Billy Mays wrote:alwaysaguest wrote:Billy Mays wrote: I'm getting the feeling that to argue my point fully would require more space and time than this forum deserves.
Yeah, THAT'S the reason that you want to drop the subject..... "space and time" not "I got caught talking out my azz by people who really understand economics and the founding documents that underpin our form of government".
 
I know you are wrong if you believe I am talking out of my a$$. Once I realized we were in a broad discussion about domestic policy and taxation and we are going into what Lincoln thinks and the Stamp tax, I felt like I was in a circus. (To be fair, looking back at some of my comments, I'm a clown too!)
 
In the end, I strongly support the death tax and I know I can go on and on about it. Here's just a few more nuggets:
 
I believe the death tax "expands the pie" of our economy. It's not about taking from the rich and giving to the poor; my belief is based on what is best for growing our economy.
I believe people who have to pay the death tax:
 - are more likely to find legal or accounting loopholes to avoid paying taxes (UBS).
 - invest less (percentage of savings) in the US economy.
 - buy less American goods.
 - more likely to invest in "arbitrage opportunities" that have a negative impact on our economy.
 
With our country facing a glut of people dying (baby boomers), it makes sense to raise the death tax. I believe $3.5MM is the right number, politically, and I would expect congress to freeze it at $3.5MM going forward. Creating the illusion that it would actually get repealed was a political move - if Bush really wanted it repealed, why didn't he have the balls to repeal it during his term?
 

You make so little sense it's hard to know where to begin. Your bullet point list would be funny if you weren't in a business involving investing and economics, but I‘m guessing you‘re new and won‘t last long. Taxing success never “grows the pie”. People who pay the estate tax are less likely to “buy American” or invest less in the US economy???? They’re likely to “invest in "arbitrage opportunities" that have a negative impact on our economy”? You just can’t be serious. Where do you get $hit like this? Watching Olbermann or Maddow?
 
Oh, and why didn't Bush "have the balls" to repeal the estate tax in his term? The GOP didn't have the power to pass it with sixty votes so they used the budget reconciliation process which requires only a simple majority but has the downside of creating legislation that expires.

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