OT: r - I thought you should see this

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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

I agree with most of what you say, especially about consolidation of services. Waste is what we need to get rid of most of all and I think that that could be the ultimate conservation effort.
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Robert Allison
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Robert Allison wrote:

You're what, nineteen? There was supposed to be this huge change when the Republicans came in. No change. If a Democratic President is elected this time around (which seems unlikely--the Democrats seem to be determined to shoot themselves in the foot and Nader has decided to stick his nose in it again) you think that there's going to be some huge change in our society?
They are politicians. They behave like politicians. The party doesn't matter--the difference between a Democrat and a Republican is in the lies they tell, not in the actions they take.

So you don't object to NRA-ILA? Why do I find that surprising.

Uh huh. Same old tired rhetoric. Find a way to do it. You can't? But you think that a bunch of politicans can?
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J. Clarke wrote:

54
There was supposed to be this huge change when

Could I interest you in voting for Barack Obama, then? I mean, since it doesn't matter, what could it hurt?

I am a member of the NRA. Why would I object to it?

I think that it can be done. But it can't be just the politicians. It has to be all of us, or at least most of us. Have you noticed that there is a lot more participation in politics this year? In some places it has increased 10 fold. I find that to be a good sign.
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Robert Allison
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Robert Allison wrote:

Didn't say leaving, said "quitting" As in, those 50-60 hour weeks aren't worth it; I'm going to work 40 hours like everybody else, the company can figure out how to deal with the decreased productivity, it's not worth giving up the family time if 60+% of what I do in that extra effort is going to taxes anyway.

Yeah, I can't wait.

Yep, voting us the treasury. Good move.

You really are a condescending and arrogant @$$hole, aren't you? I never said that I don't believe in helping people, you have no idea what I do or do not contribute to charitable causes. HERE'S A BIG CLUE FOR YOU: GOVERNMENT IS NOT A CHARITABLE ORGANIZATION! It's not charity when you are using other peoples' money. Since you are making arrogant assumptions about me, I'll do the same for you, I bet you pay very little in federal income taxes and you really want the rest of us to pick up your benefits.

Government is not a charitable organization. When laws are established, it ought to be from a guiding philosophical basis, not because it "feels good" or seems compassionate at the time.

What makes no sense is your idea that "the people" can pick and choose among various intrusive statist policies. Here's a clue, statism, at first is done ostensibly under the guise of improving the lot of the "people", who could object to that after all? I mean, if you object you are labeled as someone who doesn't want to help those in need and if people can't survive on their own they should die. So, the people who object on principle and philosophically are marginalized as mean and uncaring and the "compassionate" policies are implemented. Then, after those policies are implemented and the real costs can no longer be hidden, statism starts implementing rationing and various policies for the "benefit of the people" in order to keep costs down so taxes don't incite a revolution. Great Britain's health care system is approaching that point. Statism starts extending into what you eat, what you drink, the kinds of activities in which you can participate. At some point, even that becomes untenable and you have the state taking even greater control in order to preserve its power.
Your position sounds good, feels good, and is going to lead us all off the cliff into totalitarianism. It's been done before, been proven to happen every time.
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Mark & Juanita wrote:

Good for you! I wish that I could cut back to just sixty, but I own my own business and I have to keep at it.

Me, either.

Did you vote for them?

Asshole? You bet! I don't suffer fools gladly. Sorry if that impinges on your rigid little world. Don't like having your positions questioned? Don't post them.
The government is a government, not a charity. It has programs that provide INSURANCE against total deprivation when bad things happen. Like your auto insurance or your home insurance. That is not charity. You don't like the programs that provide that insurance. Tell us why. Don't drag out your arcane concepts designed to frighten the uninformed. Stop appealing to the baser instincts and appeal to reason.

Correct, again. It does provide some insurance programs, though. And how about we guide the government along MY philosophical basis? Why does it have to be yours?

Statists! Statism! Those are scary terms alright! That is a scary picture you are painting. Designed, of course, to frighten the hell out of people. Fortunately, this is the 21st century and the Berlin Wall has fallen.
We have seen that socialism/communism in all its forms does not work. We are not heading in that direction and noone in his/her right mind would want to go there. Capitalism is king. Even china is becoming a mixed economic system because there is NO WAY the Chinese can deny that it works. For you to suggest that that is what I want is the heighth of arrogance and stupidity.
But, is our system perfect? No. It is a system by which there is only one basis for determining value; profit. So things that may be good for you, but are not profitable have no value. Do the National Parks make money? No, in fact they are a burden to maintain and operate, but they add to our quality of life. How about clean air or water? Is it profitable to make companies spend billions of dollars so that they pollute less? No. But it sure does add to the quality of life for those that live in their vicinity. These things add to our general welfare.
Does providing an insurance system against starvation, loss of health, or loss of youth seem to be a profitable enterprise? Yes! And there are companies out there that provide it. Can everyone afford that coverage? No. What do we do about them?
Your doom and gloom scenario that says that helping them through a system where we all give a little to provide a minimum of coverage is going to lead us all behind the Iron Curtain is just hogwash.
This is not the 1900s. We have come a long way from the days where a communist state is inevitable. How many new kingdoms do you see being set up these days? I think that we are past having to worry about a king taking control of our country.
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Robert Allison wrote:

You know, this took me aback for a bit and I was about to call shenanigans; I know of few, scratch that, no independent business people who would espouse the "tax me more", "I want a government that is free to write whatever regulations it wants to" views you have put forth in this thread. Then it struck me, you want the rest of *us* to pay for *your* health care plan. So it comes down to you wanting your neighbors to pay for your benefits.
... snip
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Mark & Juanita wrote:

Personal responsibility goes both ways. I pay for my own health care plans and everything else. I believe that we should help our fellow man when he is in need and I am willing to pay for that. (You never know, I may just need it myself one day).
I am also responsible for both the democratic spending in congress and the MASSIVE republican spending in congress. My kids had nothing to do with it. It happened on my watch, and I should be responsible for paying it back. Not them.
What is so hard to understand about that?
It is called personal responsibility. You can't just stop it at your own front door. It extends farther than that.
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What you say would make some sense if we were not paying for billions of dollars in wasteful projects that are solely for the profit of some lobbyist's employer. Government spending is out of control on most every level and every program.
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Edwin Pawlowski wrote:

Yes, but we allowed it. Either through apathy or ignorance. We are responsible for our government. I am all for letting the ones that benefitted from it the most, pay for it. But I sure don't want to leave it as my childrens inheritance.
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Robert Allison
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Unfortunately true, and most of the politicians are proud of it. If we could get wasteful government spending halfway under control, there would be more than enough money for universal health care without further taxation. As it is, we're always finding ways to get new money in taxes because there is constant government theft going on. And, yeah, it IS theft for someone to arrange for Halliburton to get no-bid contracts which they then do not fulfil properly, even though they charge prices six steps above premium. Halliburton comes to mind for obvious reasons, but the list is thousands of companies long. Buy-a- politician-week, each month. Special sale.
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On Sun, 02 Mar 2008 02:47:57 -0800, Charlie Self wrote:

So, as always, it comes back to "power corrupts". Whether it be public (government) or private (drug/oil/etc conglomerates) seems to make little difference.
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Robert Allison wrote:

So how do you suffer yourself?

Uh huh, and then forces people to pay the "insurance". When the Mafia does that it's illegal. So why should the government be allowed to do it?

One can opt out of both, car insurance by putting a cash amount in escrow or just not driving and homeowners by self-insuring. How do you get out of the government-mandated "health insurance" (as in "if you don't pay this insurance it will be very bad for your health")?

Because the payments are extorted from people who don't benefit from the insurance.

Et tu.

Because you favor theft.

What of it? The collapse of the Soviet Union didn't end "statism". If you think it did then you are a bigger fool than I thought you were.

And yet you want yet more of it.

Then quit advocating socialist institutions.

Kind of hard to make precision devices with sick workers and dirty air and water. So these things _are_ good for business. Parks give workers a way to recharge so that they remain productive, again good for business.

We figure out what's wrong with them that keeps them from getting work and we fix it so that they become productive members of society. We don't just throw money at them.

Yeah, it's always "we all give a _little_. But somehow the politicians can't ever limit themselves to that "little".

A Roman would have said that around 100 BC. A German would have in the '20s. Looks like you have no more sense of history than you do of politics.
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J. Clarke wrote:

Oh! An insult! Weren't you the guy on the debate team that tried to win by saying: "Well, FUCK YOU!"

Because we decided as a society that it was the right thing to do, and gave them permission.

You can do your own medical work.

Are you not a member of this society? Did your side not win the debate? Maybe you should try putting forth valid debating points next time instead of insults.

Yes, that applies to me, too.

Then have me arrested.

Another insult. Remember where that got you in your debate against those programs you hate so much.
Care to show me a place where communism is on the rise?

You have an error in your perception. I want none of it.

How can I quit doing something that I have never done?

Absolutely! A part of that damned old "general welfare" communist plot. Or do you favor not having to fund those things anymore?

And we all pay for a share of doing that.

Then get out there and vote them out of office.

Are the germans being ruled by a king?
And a roman would have been wrong, THEN! I don't think that a roman saying that today would be considered a fool. Looks like YOUR sense of history needs a bit of an update.
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A republic may take many forms. A representative Democracy is the form used by the United States.
'Representative Republic' is a term that is new to me.

Doh! The top 50% of income earners are also earning a lot more than 86% of all income. I'll bet they also use a lot more than 86% of all government infrastructure and resources though that would be a LOT tougher to measure.
Even with a flat tax the upper 50% are gong to pay more income tax than the lower.
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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

I meant Federal Republic; i.e. a republic of states in which the states are the members of the republic. The founders were rightly concerned that a representative democracy would lead to the condition we have today where the "majority" would be able to elect leaders who would take from one segment of society to give to themselves. i.e., DeTouqueville's concern with the "people voting themselves the treasury" is becoming a reality.

Need to issue a correction to the above. The top 50% does not pay 86% of all federal taxes, it pays 97% of all income taxes. I was looking at the wrong lines in my source document.

Doh yourself! The top 50% earns 87% of all income and pays 96% of all income taxes (see correction above). From the IRS statistics for 2005 (last year available)
Top % %of Federal Income Tax paid % of Income 1 39.4% 21.2% 5 60.0% 35.8% 10 70.3% 46.4% 50 96.9% 87.1%
So, it is pretty apparent that the upper levels of income are paying disproportionately larger amounts of the federal burden relative to their income.

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Fred the Red Shirt wrote:

And they should. It is the benefits/payment ratio that is most often overlooked in our tax system. When Halliburton gets a multibillion dollar contract in Iraq, our tax dollars go to pay for that. Halliburton, its board of directors, its stock holders all benefit greatly from this windfall of money from our government. Yet, the guy that works down at the convenience store doesn't benefit at all. When we go to war, the military contractors make a lot of money, we don't. When the government passed legislation for SS drug benefits, it built in a non negotiation with the drug companies over drug costs. Who wins? The drug companies. Since the wealthy are the ones that benefit the most from these large programs, they should be the ones to pay for them.
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On Fri, 29 Feb 2008 22:52:17 -0700, Mark & Juanita

Doncha love statistics?
According to the IRS, for tax year 2005, the top 50% paid 96.93% of federal personal income tax whilst having merely 87.17% of the AGI (adj gross income).
The income threshold to get into that top 50% was -- $30,881.
Boy, I bet Joe Schmoe making his 30 grand is glad to be in the company of Bill Gates in at least one category!
Renata
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Larry Blanchard wrote:

Go read some James Madison - he spoke quite specifically about the General Welfare clause - it is NOT and was NOT intended to be a "get out of jail free" card for government action. Specifically, Madison pointed out that this clause should NOT be read as an abrogation of enumerated rights. But ... it doesn't matter any more. You and the rest of the do-gooders want lots and lots of government. You got it. Don't whine when they peek in your bedroom, your boardroom, your wallet, and you life. You're getting what you asked for.
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

I have read:
The Federalist Papers
The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States
James Madison: A Biography
The Federalist
Notes of Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787 Reported by James Madison
Do you know of any good ones?
Have you read anything from the writings of those who opposed his ideas? People like Hamilton, Franklin, Edmund Randolph, George Mason, George Pinckney, Governor Morris, or Roger Sherman? You know, some of the other founding fathers?
Or do you just read passages from those with ideas similar to your own?
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Tim Daneliuk wrote:

Tim, did you ever see anywhere that I have supported any of the actions you mention above? IIRC, my comments have been something along the lines of "letting Kennedy write his education plan" and some of the other comments similar to yours. Why do you think the Republicans lost in 2006, because they had become Democrat Lite. Why would people wanting handouts vote for fake democrats when they could vote for the real thing?
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