Best line of the night

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From the rebuttal to the president's State of the Union address, by Mitch Daniels:
"In word and deed, the President and his allies tell us that we just cannot handle ourselves in this complex, perilous world without their benevolent protection. Left to ourselves, we might pick the wrong health insurance, the wrong mortgage, the wrong school for our kids; why, unless they stop us, we might pick the wrong light bulb!"
http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57365415-503544/mitch-daniels-gop-response-full-text/
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What's needed is dedicated teachers and involved parents. BOTH! I said BOTH!!
--
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Han
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I only watched a portion of the pep talk but when he said the best teachers should be rewarded, I asked myself define "best" and then I said with what. I mean some people can't afford their homes much less property tax increases of which help pay for the teachers. I thought maybe a better way was not to reward the "best" teachers but just get rid of the bad teachers. Of course then we have to define what "good and bad" is but aside from the definitions, I think a teacher doing his/her job shouldn't get rewarded but should keep their job instead. I think the reward is seeing their student graduate college and come back to say thank you to that teacher. I realize not many students do this but maybe we need to teach the students "manners / respect" as well as academics. Just my 2 cents worth...
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wrote:

It is difficult to define and measure what a good teacher is, Indeed!! I am not saying it would be easy, nor that there shouldn't be ways to so so. But ...
Both my daughter and son-in-law are high school teachers in less than privileged districts. While it is very rewarding for them to see students succeed, especially those they get when they at first appear to be "losers", it isn't helpful to them when their net take home pay gets cut significantly, as happened in NJ when the millionairs' tax was cut, but teachers were told to pay much more for their healthcare and in addition had their pension funds reduced once again (NJ has refused to pay the contractually arrived at amounts into the pension funds).
--
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Han
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Han wrote:

Everyone wants to pay good teachers more (and get rid of bad ones) but nobody wants to pay for it. The thing is, what legal, constitutional, moral, etc. justification do you have for taxing some people at a higher rate just because they have deep pockets? Why should one person pay $0.50 of every dollar they earn while someone else only pays $0.15 of every dollar they earn? No rational person can be in favor of anything but a single flat tax on all income from all sources as being fair to everyone.
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wrote:

I don't believe there is a single "flat tax" person advocating that we should add up all the tax revenue, divide by the number of tax payers, and make everyone pay that amount. Looking up total federal income tax <http://tinyurl.com/6wm3qfc <http://www.usgovernmentrevenue.com/year_revenue_2010USbn_13bs1n_10 #usgs302>: ~1 trillion Number of individual returns filed <http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview?id80531 130 million 1,000,000,000,000 / 130,000,000 = 1,000,000/ 130 = $7,692
Now how are we going to get that amount from the roughly half of all filers who now do NOT owe income taxes? Or better, where would they get that money from?
I really think (and the "socialist" in me agrees) that paying taxes should be in relation to your ability to contribute. If the income distribution in the US was much, much more flat, a flat tax (in % of income, not a set amount) would be defensible, but it isn't.
Before we get to the flat tax, let's eliminate the tax loopholes, and we should first discuss whether charitable contributions, mortgage interest, state & local taxes should be deductible. After all that's what brought my income taxes down to less than 14% of AGI.
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Han
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Han wrote:

You seem to misunderstand what a flat tax is. It is not the countries expenses divided by population, it is everyone paying the same percentage of their income (from all sources). You make more, you pay more, simple as that, but nobody pays a greater percentage than anyone else. Everyone agrees that there would be a cutoff at about the poverty level.

With a flat tax everyone pays there fair share, regardless of income distribution. Everyone, regardless of wealth (except those under the poverty line) pay the same percentage, so for example you make $100 you pay $20 or you make $100M you pay $20M, absolutely fair.

A flat tax (done properly) eliminates all tax loopholes since there are no deductions and no differentiation between sources of income. Make it working at McD's of from investments and pay the same flat tax percentage.
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<snip>
From what you said and I snipped, a flat tax is almost the same as what we have now, except there are no loopholes or deductions And, if you have a "poverty" cutoff, then in essence you have a graduated, progressive tax structure - income more than $XX.XX requires a higher tax (unequal to zero). Having a few more graduations wouldn't be bad, then, IMO.
As intimated, I agree about getting rid of loopholes.
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Han
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Han wrote:

It's not "progressive" (a.k.a. socialist), if it is the same rate for everyone and only has a poverty cutoff.
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"Pete C." wrote:

To be clear, I firmly believe the person at the McD grill, Bill Gates and myself should all be paying the same percentage of our income in taxes. This of course means Bill will pay the most in $, the McD guy the least and I will be in the middle somewhere.
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as well as:

To have 2 scales, a zero scale for the real poor, and a uniform scale for everyone else is philosophically the same as having multiple, progressive scales. Flat taxers shoul first focus on getting rid of loopholes.
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Han
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I heard on the news today that Mitt Romney paid about $3 million in federal taxes on an AGI of $45 million, about a 6.7% rate. I don't even make a 6 figure income and my rate was about 7.5%. Maybe a flat tax would be better.
--
There are no stupid questions, but there are lots of stupid answers.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar. org
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snipped-for-privacy@sdf.lNoOnSePsAtMar.org (Larry W) wrote in

I thought he made 45 million in 2 years, and that the 3 in taxes was for 1 year. But still ...
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Han
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You may be right Han, I was driving at the time and going by memory.
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The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation
with the average voter. (Winston Churchill)
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wrote:

I'd even agree to a progression on the bottom end. After about 75-100k it should be flat though. No loopholes, no deductions.
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are you going to separate income from investment earnings(capital gains)? that will have a negative effect on the economy,as less money wil be avaialble for investment. Look at Warrent Buffet;he gets a tiny salary,but most of his wealth is held by corporations and foundations,same for Bill Gates. Thus,their taxes are low,because most of their wealth is sheltered. But their "needs" are provided by their corporations.
How about the family farm? right now,the inheritance tax forces people to sell their property to meet the tax,despite taxes having already been paid on that wealth.Double taxation.
--
Jim Yanik
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Inheritance taxes are put in place, and rather blantantly if you listen to the people pushing them, solely to punish those who make so much money that they offend the pushers. Inheritances should be taxed by what they are. If business, then the inheritors pay the cap gains tax just like they would have if they had bought it (and get the stepped up basis).
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with LLC's or trusts, why would anyone place themselves in the position of being liable for inheritance taxes?
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On Thu, 26 Jan 2012 16:45:20 -0800, "Malcom \"Mal\" Reynolds"

Corporations don't shield an estate from estate taxes. Before the corporation changes hands, at death, they are taxed. An irrevocable trust can change hands without taxes but it has actually changed hands before the death of the originator.
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if the estate is a corporation how can the estate be inherited other than the normal process of shareholders/members of the corporation. If a corporation dies, it should pay taxes on the proceeds of the dissolution
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