Taxes are a robbery

November 30, 2019, 3:09 am

Agree32 Disagree59

35%
65%

The debate "Taxes are a robbery" was started by Thinkinghead on November 30, 2019, 3:09 am. 32 people are on the agree side of this discussion, while 59 people are on the disagree side. That might be enough to see the common perception. It looks like most people are against to this statement.

civilizeddiscussion posted 1 argument, mario posted 1 argument, Nemiroff posted 2 arguments to the agreers part.
Nemiroff posted 6 arguments, historybuff posted 3 arguments, Greetings posted 2 arguments to the disagreers part.

jrardin12, Unaluhabe, Thinkinghead, civilizeddiscussion, MrShine, mario, Ali and 25 visitors agree.
historybuff, diecinueve, fireball4thewin, Anonymous42, Greetings, Nemiroff, matthieuwise and 52 visitors disagree.

Nemiroff
replied to...

companies used to account for consumers and workers as well as shareholders. they were collectively referred to as stakeholders. it wasnt financially logical except in some broad long term meta ways (societal success is good for very long term growth), but was mostly just the culture of the time. it can be again.

i think the logical way to explain it would be pride rather than just greed. instead of making a consistent stream of mediocrity (as we often see in games, movies, music, and some would argue everything) that is cost effective, proven to succeed, and with no risk.... a company may seek to make masterpieces, which often involves risk and cost. financial logical? no, but pride is a very real motivator, it can drive a culture change.

one can be proud of having a strong corporate culture, good employees, and exceptional products, kinda like japan was perceived to be. spending work time on exercise and wellness programs, and sensible ceo compensations. its far from impossible, americans just make it seem like greed based capitalism is the only way to harness human depravity. its a depressing view.

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Allirix
replied to...

I agree that the fiduciary duty causes agents to maximise roi for shareholdes which can cost the environment and society. I wish all companies needed to register as Benefit Organisations which have a legal duty to a triple bottom line (social, environmental, economic) instead of just the economic bottom line. That's the only way I can imagine us ever getting around a fiduciary responsibility.

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

good point about bank accounts, but i do believe far more is stuck in stock portfolios and where that goes is far more complicated. as for second hand luxury goods, im sure the market is quite healthy.

rather then debt, i blame a shifting corporate culture obsessed with shareholder returns to the exclusion of any other priority. our economy is still growing, our companies are richer then they ever have been... but the rewards for this growth are skewed, creating the depressing scenario you are refering to.

the problem with your conclusion is that it isnt theft because the money is stolen, but thats still theft, just justified. if the scenario was justified gain with no theft would the taxation be wrong? no. taxation is how civilization functions and its justification should be inherent, not situational.

taxes are simply good, as long as they are not mismanaged. even for the wealthy, they would prefer to not pay taxes personally, but they would not like to live in a place without taxes... which is why most wealthy live in new york and cali. public spending can make places awesome and people WANT to live there.

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Greetings
replied to...

Yes - the second-hand yachts would be sold, but yacht demand in general will skyrocket. Many people won't want a stinky second-hand yacht, they'll want a sparkly new one... just like they do with cars right now. There will be 10x as many yachts constructed as there are currently. Yacht construction is not useful for society. Running a yatch is an environmentally harmful leisure activity, and more yachts would be a huge increase in inefficiency.

Obviously yachts is a metaphor for... yno... loads of other goods too.

To some extent, it's not a bad thing that this money would be pumped into the economy, but money doesn't really sit dormant in the current system either. That's a misconception. The banks lend your money out to keep the economy growing. In fact, they're prone to lending out way more money than they actually have in deposits (which causes the opposite problem - too much growth, too quickly in a way that is inevitably unsustainable).

The true injustice is that... at the beginning of the 20th century, borrowing and spending was far too excessive. Our parent's generation lived luxurious lives during the booming 90s & early naughties. Companies were profligate and treated their employees like kings. It was all luxury hotels & fine dining on expenses & trips to Monte Carlo, and that was the lifestyle of many 'average' office employees. Okay - probably not the case for everyone, but it was far, far too common. The whole thing inevitably collapsed in 2008. Businesses went bust, salaries went unpaid and homes were repossessed. The banks panicked and asked those who owed them to repay, but... they couldn't because all the money had gone...

In their unabating avarice, the boomers decided to borrow money from the future (that's us) to sustain the banks. And as a consequence, we're now paying all that money back through taxation without seeing any of the benefits. Millenials and Gen Z live in the sewers, squabbling over who gets to eat the biggest rat, and the boomers who imposed this lifestyle on us are still rich. In my country (the UK), 1 in 5 boomers is a millionaire. 1 in 5! Jesus! What did they ever do to deserve that? They failed and they're still rich.

So to bring this back around to the thread... taxation isn't robbery. We should tax the f*** out of those greedy, undeserving b******s... :-). They stole from us. It is time they paid their fair share for the problems they're trying to leave behind.

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

the reason the wealth tax isnt popular is as you said, the low cash balance the wealthy hold will require a firesale every year devaluing many assets or commodities. i dont see how your digital currency will solve this. they will likely still have the same currency to asset balance and im not sure how this divorce you speak of would function.

i think a more conventional answer to the problem would be to increase capital gains tax, perferably in a bracket method like income tax. most wealthy dont work for their income, their investments are how they make their money, especially the very wealthiest.

gifting is an issue for my suggestions, but gifts are not money earned and could still be subject to a tax, like gambling earnings.

a major concern of mine is implenetation. do we just suddenly put it in place with the elderly who have been taxed all their life on the losing end double? do we apply it to. newborns going forward while everyone else remains getting taxed? very difficult to figure out.

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

thanks for your feedback. any major change will take a culture shift, but thats not impossible.

the spend it all craze may be a problem but it is not all lost. having them toss every penny into the economy is far better then letting it sit in a savings account or stock portolio, and there is little difference between money assets and stuff assets, their yachts will simply be sold.

we can let people pass on some money, 100k or so, so most people may be unaffected. ill respond to the rest of your post later.

3 months, 3 weeks ago

that depends entirely from the country you are talking about

3 months, 3 weeks ago
Greetings
replied to...

@Nemiroff

Your 100% inheritance tax idea is a nice one in principle. That would produce a perfectly meritocratic system with a strong state providing a safety net & ensuring equality of opportunity for all.

However, in practise, people hate the concept of inheritance tax above all else. They want to be able to pass something (or everything) onto their children, and I think that's somewhat understandable.

But let's say hypothetically this could be implemented... there are some major issues. How do you stop people from simply gifting their wealth to others before they die?

Even if you could prevent that, people would simply ensure thay they had nothing left when they died. We'd see a huge surge in excessive spending. If you can't pass on your money, you'd make sure you spent all of it. Whilst some people may pass it onto charity, the majority would just splash it on yachts, luxury cars and flash holidays. Or worse... completely unnecesary vanity projects (e.g. "I have purchased this mountain... please can your team carve my face into the side of it").

Everyone knows inequality of wealth is getting silly. Even Republicans know that steps will need to be taken to redistribute wealth eventually, they just don't want it to happen now whilst they're having so much fun.

The solution is a wealth tax. The current problem with implementing one is that many people are asset rich but cash poor. These people would often have to sell their property if a wealth tax was introduced. That makes it super unpopular.

However, with the exciting new blockchain technology, currencies will soon be digital. It'd then be highly feasible to divorce one's assets from their digital wealth. A person with little income but a $400,000 home could be taxed 1% of their total net worth each year, but never have to move out. Their son / daughter probably wouldn't have to move out either. When he / she inherits the home, he can either pay the tax or continue to see his net worth reduced. Perhaps his grandson would eventually have to either contribute something or sell up. I reckon one would have to sell up only when they owed 60% of their net worth in tax.

There would be a max amount of wealth one can hold without taxation. Let's say 1% of anything over $40,000 is taxed.

Essentially, the wealthy either contribute or gradually lose their wealth. Right now, once you're rich, it is far too easy to stay rich, and for your kids to stay rich too.

Anyway, I'll leave you alone now :-D

3 months, 4 weeks ago

that depends entirely from the country you are talking about

3 months, 4 weeks ago
historybuff
replied to...

"Voluntary taxes" aren't taxes. They are either charity or bribes.

If it's charity, then it is highly unreliable. One year you might bring in enough to pay for schools, the next you don't and you have to close down the schools. One year you don't bring in enough to repair your bridges and they collapse. It would never be a functional way to run a government or provide services.

The other way this would work would be bribes. IE I will give the government 10 millions dollars, but I only want them to spend it on roads that I will use. Or, in exchange I want you to repeal some legislation I don't like. It completely undermines the authority of the government because they would no longer be in charge. The people "donating" the money would now be in charge. That would be an oligarchy.

4 months ago

i have been thinking of a fair tax system that also promotes equal opportunity as well as motivates success. this is not quite fully thought out yet, but this is a very rough draft.

0 tax during life
100% tax upon death

you keep 100% of your earnings, but eventually 100% will go to the broader society as well.

im sure there will be many loopholes, but they wont be addressed until they are explored so what do yall think?

4 months ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

how viable do you think an unstable revenue source that is highly susceptible to "strings attached" demands would be? i dont think its gonna work out well.

4 months ago

How about voluntary taxes? That wouldnt be robbery. Is there any way that could be viable?

4 months ago
historybuff
replied to...

Anarchy never lasts though. At some point people will band together for protection and create some form of government. That government will then have the resources to spread it's influence.

There will always be some sort of government. That government will need resources to be able to function. I can't really imagine any scenario where people could plausibly expect to not be taxed.

4 months ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

or anarchy

4 months ago

Without taxes it is impossible for a democracy, or any form of government, to exist. The only way to avoid taxes would be to revert to some sort of tribal system. Although even then people usually gave tribute to the chieftain.

4 months ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

taxes is how civilization functions.

4 months ago

i agree whats the point if taxes anyway?

4 months ago
Nemiroff
replied to...

How can you say the wealthy are being taxed too much when the wealthy are the only ones growing in wealth? clearly they are doing fine. its the rest of us who need help!

btw, do you think that the millionaire in the 40% bracket gets taxed on 40% of all his earnings? thats not how the bracket system works.

4 months ago
civilizeddiscussion
replied to...

fair tax for everyone is good but tax the rich more is like subtracting the grade of good student to give it to bad student. that will make smart students being lazy to chase good grade

4 months ago

taxes is how civilization functions.

6 months, 1 week ago
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