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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/it-was-a-joke-hence-the-big-lol-at-the-end-30289797.aspx

Subject:  Re: FairTax Date:  9/28/2012  10:22 PM
Author:  ptheland Number:  116715 of 120809

It was a joke, hence the big LOL! at the end. Lighten up.

Sorry - the joke must have been lost in the translation. I didn't get it.

I think it's unfair that nearly half of Americans pay no income taxes whatsoever.

You're entitled to your beliefs, as am I. They may be wrong, but you're entitled to them. LOL!

But, we the consumers get to decide WHEN to pay the tax as opposed to the federal government demanding it from us.

Why shouldn't the government demand the tax from us? Their demand of a percentage of spending is no less a demand than a percentage of income. Both are demands on citizens and residents.

Why would someone making $100K only save $10K but someone making $300K manage to save 10X more?

I thought this was all about spending. The person making $100k spends $90k (including the spending on taxes). The person making $300k spends $200k - over twice as much. Why wouldn't the person making $300k spend only $90k just like the other person? Of course, that would give the $300k person an income tax equivalent rate of about 7%. I was trying to be generous to the FairTax in my example. I can be more brutal about it if you want.

This whole "tax the rich" thing is a load of crap.

If you don't tax the people with the money, who are you going to tax? The poor people without money? The concept is that you tax the people who can afford to pay the tax.

You and I both know if you seize all of the assets of the "rich", it wouldn't make a dent in the deficit or the debt.

Don't include me in that. I haven't run the numbers, so I don't know. And besides, it's off the point. We're not talking about taxing the assets, we're talking about taxing the income.

There is an optimal tax rate at which people are willing to pay that maximizes revenue to the Federal government.

Ahh, yes. The Laffer Curve. Interesting theory and one I can't argue with. Surprisingly, I agree with it. The problem is that it's not useful for setting tax policy. I don't know of anyone who has actually developed a formula for it. And without some provable or even rationally arguable basis for deciding where the peak is, it's completely useless.

I believe the optimal rate is lower, not higher than current rates.

You do realize that today's tax rates are the lowest they've been in many decades. And besides, you don't get to have a belief about where the optimal rate is on the Laffer Curve, you need to make a mathematical argument for where it is. I'll grant your beliefs on progressive vs. regressive taxation. That is in the domain of a belief system. But the Laffer Curve requires some proof, not a blind belief.

The problem is taxing the "evil rich" as proposed pushes that group of folks into the former condition. Or worse, they bail on the USA like the French.

Seems to me that a couple of centuries ago the French tried taxing the poor and not the rich. I believe you'll find the result of that tax policy filed under "French Revolution". I'd kind of like to avoid repeating that one. And I think the FairTax is a big step exactly in that direction.

--Peter
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