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mikeaht Free

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  1. 7 days ago on Chip Bok

    The K street lobbyist have really stacked the Tax deck for special interests. And sadly Congress has always been the best that money can buy…. ;-) Probably you and I are in agreement that we need a serious overhaul of our tax system.

    But its my opinion that ham-fisted “solutions” to tax the rich and to tax corporations will not work as they both have the ability to move to tax havens along with their assets.

    I’m sure not many would shed a tear if we eliminated the IRS entirely and went to a flat tax and VAT taxes. But my fear is these are disproportionately burdensome to those with low end incomes and will not impact the rich all that much as most of their wealth is tied up in non-liquid assets.

    What really gripes my ass is people (and companies) with fast computers can engage in speculative financial trading and make obscene amounts of money while destroying or putting capitol assets at risk. They make far more money than a local business owner, manufacturing facility, engineer, contracter….or…..

    I have always been of the opinion that high taxes should be used to discourage some types of economic activity, (like smoking, and speculative demand), and low taxes should be used to encourage economic activity that we want to stimulate, (like long term investments that actually produce jobs, goods, services, R&D, and capitol assets). Consumption should be taxed moderately.

    Not only do we need tax reform but we also need spending reform. A major part of the financial expertise of government consists of devising ways to conceal how much they are taking from the public. If we were to focus on reducing the government’s wasteful spending line item by line item we would not have a deficit.

    So much for my 2 cents ;-)

  2. 8 days ago on Chip Bok

    The ProPublica article was about INDIVIDUALS not paying enough taxes…. (not corporations)!

    ProPublica compared the amount of taxes paid by these people not to their earned income but to the amount their wealth grew during the period in question. That’s not an analysis of their incomes but their wealth.

    The top 1 percent paid over 40 percent of federal income taxes, despite earning just under 21 percent of total adjusted gross income (AGI). The bottom 50 percent of taxpayers earned 11.6 percent of total AGI, but paid less than 3 percent of income taxes…

    As for Corporations – which is the topic you wandered off to…. States compete with each other to bring corporations into their area with tax breaks because they know they will more than make up those tax breaks with other taxes. The same is true for countries. If the U.S. and other Group of Seven governments set a minimum tax, (as Biden is proposing), without buy-in from the likes of Hungary and Ireland, they risk making those low-tax countries more competitive than ever.

    Here’s the rub. Not all multinational corporations have a profit margin of over 10 percent. Amazon, for example, had a profit margin of 6.3 percent of its $386 billion global profits in 2020. In other words, it is not going to be caught by Biden’s tax proposal at all. Many other companies who do currently have profit margins above 10 percent a no doubt already be thinking up ways of engineering margins below this threshold. I remember around 45 years ago when I first started developing accounting software… The CFO for the huge multi-national corporation that I worked for informed me: The actual numbers don’t matter – it’s how you want the numbers to look that matters.

    I’d rather have the multiplier effect working in the US than having dollars flow outside the US and working for some other country.

  3. 8 days ago on Chip Bok

    ProPublica fails to note that these billionaires own vast amounts of stock in companies that pay large corporate income taxes. In a recent year, Berkshire Hathaway paid $6 billion in corporate income taxes, and Warren Buffett owns one-third of Berkshire Hathaway. So, didn’t he pay $2 billion of that corporate tax bill? Chip should not have been fooled by the ProPublica ‘exposé.’ Instead of exposing misdeeds on the part of the wealthy, ProPublica exposed the lengths to which some are willing to go to deceive the public in service of the grand progressive campaign for higher taxes.

  4. 9 days ago on Stuart Carlson

    For the 2018 tax year, the last year for which we have data, the top 1 percent paid over 40 percent of federal income taxes, despite earning just under 21 percent of total adjusted gross income (AGI). The bottom 50 percent of taxpayers earned 11.6 percent of total AGI, but paid less than 3 percent of income taxes… Taxpayers should not be fooled by the ProPublica ‘exposé.’ Instead of exposing misdeeds on the part of the wealthy, ProPublica exposed the lengths to which some are willing to go to deceive the public in service of the grand progressive campaign for higher taxes.

  5. 12 days ago on Bob Gorrell

    Max Horkheimer, (Marxist), first defined “critical theory” in a 1937 essay contrasting it with what he called “traditional theory,” which simply tries to understand and explain a phenomenon. Critical theory, however is a theory is critical to the extent that it tries “to liberate human beings from the circumstances that enslave them” and “to create a world which satisfies” their “needs and powers.”

    Who benefits?” Once a “prosperous” group is identified, critical “theorists” then take the prosperity itself as dispositive evidence that the group in question has organized the social order in such a way as to exploit others and benefit themselves. No (or very little) room is permitted for impersonal, incidental, or individual explanatory factors. Almost every social malady is the fault of an oppressor class.

    In this respect, critical theorists take their lead from Marx’s line, inscribed on his headstone: that “philosophers have only interpreted the world in various ways; the point, however, is to change it.”

  6. 12 days ago on Dana Summers

    Documents obtained by the US State Department show that in 2015 the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) commanders predicted that World War 3 would be fought with biological weapons. Chinese scientists described SARS ­coronaviruses – of which Covid is an example – as heralding a “new era of genetic weapons”. They boasted the viruses could be “artificially manipulated into an emerging human ­disease virus, then weaponised and unleashed in a way never seen before”. *So Fauci (the director of NIAID), re-starts gain-of-function research funding in China… of all places!!!We also know that the Wuhan lab used CRISPR technology to engineer mice with humanized lungs, then studied their susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 in the summer of 2019, before the pandemic started. Wouldn’t you think that for every dollar spent for “gain-of-function” that you would be spending $100 for “gain-of-prevention” research and be spending on prevention before playing with potential bio-warfare weapons? So why did Fauci advocate for, and re-start gain-of-function research funding in China?

  7. 18 days ago on Bob Gorrell

    Fauci used his insistence on bulletproof studies to justify his mulish slowness in response to the AIDS crisis, including his fateful hesitancy to authorize therapeutic treatments for the diseases that were killing those who suffered from AIDS. Gay men turned to “buyers’ clubs” to get the drugs that their own desperate research indicated they needed. 10’s of thousands of Americans died due to his slowness.

    We now find out that Fauci argued the benefits of Gain-of-Function Research would outweigh a pandemic risk in 2012 paper. Fauchi testified before congress his organization had not ever funded gain of function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology, [WIV]. However a research article written by WIV scientists, “Discovery of a rich gene pool of bat SARS-related coronaviruses provides new insights into the origin of SARS coronavirus”, for example, qualifies as gain-of-function and was clearly a product of NIH-funding. The Obama administration stopped Gain-of-Function Research. Fauci consulted the Office of Science and Technology Policy, which is part of the White House to restart funding, but the White House put a pause on it and Fauci himself undid the pause and therefor may be partially culpable for unleashing the pandemic!!!

    Do you still think of Flip-Flop Fauci as some kind of Pandemic Hero?

  8. 23 days ago on Mike Lester

    Even the liberal media is starting to admit that they did a smear job on Trump… (and that Trump was right in pointing his finger at the Chinese government).Remember when Trump said he had a ‘high degree of confidence’ that the virus originated in a Wuhan lab. When pressed on what evidence he had, Trump responded, ‘I’m not allowed to tell you that.’ Around the same time Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also told ABC News ‘there’s enormous evidence that this is where this began.’ He added: ‘I can tell you that there is a significant amount of evidence that this came from that laboratory in Wuhan.’ Mainstream media instantly tried to discredit Trump calling his claim racist. (Have you noticed yet that any information that mainstream media does not like is labeled racist in an effort to end the discussion of different facts that go against their narratives?)

    Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine writes:“What this episode reveals]is the vulnerabilities in the mainstream- and liberal-media ecosystem… Progressive advocates will take strong positions on a factual question, such as whether COVID-19 originated inside or outside a laboratory, based entirely on how they believe political actors will use the answer… “Not only will they reject a factual possibility that might flatter their political opponents, but they will assume anybody who takes a different view must also hold political motivations.What’s completely absent from their thinking is any notion that the truth of the question could be abstracted from motive… Twitter is the milieu in which the opinions of elite reporters take shape. And very often it is a petri dish of tribalism and confirmation bias.”

    Matt Yglesias, Slow Boring writes:“Politifact’s now-retracted fact check deeming lab leak theorists to have their ‘pants on fire’ ran in September 2020…. it’s increasingly clear that this was a huge fiasco for the mainstream press that got way over their skis in terms of discourse-policing,"

  9. 24 days ago on Henry Payne

    In light of what we know about the Bidens, I won’t insult your intelligence by suggesting that you really believe what you just wrote.

  10. 25 days ago on Phil Hands

    Hamas, the Palestinian terrorist group (and Iran’s proxy) has ruled the Gaza Strip for the past 15 years. (BTW: Hamas was only established in 1987.) Gaza suffers, in part, because of 19 years of cruel Egyptian occupation, followed by 22 years of much less cruel, but no less frustrating, Israeli occupation. In 1993, the Oslo Accords were signed. In exchange for Arafat’s signed pledge to “renounce the use of terrorism and other acts of violence,” Israel agreed to treat the PLO as a legitimate Palestinian government.

    At Camp David in 2000, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak offered the Palestinians virtually everything they claimed to be seeking — a sovereign state with its capital in East Jerusalem, 97 percent of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, tens of billions of dollars in “compensation” for the plight of Palestinian refugees. Arafat refused the offer. Instead he launched the bloodiest wave of terrorism in Israel’s history — the Second Intifada.

    The Hamas Covenant is a comprehensive manifesto comprised of 36 separate articles, all of which promote the basic HAMAS goal of destroying the State of Israel through Jihad. So now, Iran’s proxy has fired more than 4,000 rockets into Israel, some of which reached as far north as Tel Aviv and all of which were launched in the hope of wounding or killing as many Israelis as possible. (Quite a few of those rockets mis-fired killing Palestinians.) In self-defense, Israel bombed hundreds of Hamas positions in Gaza, many of them located in homes, buildings, and tunnels. Hamas deliberately locates arms, military infrastructure, and command posts in civilian settings. As a matter of longstanding policy, Israel goes to extraordinary lengths to avoid harming civilians, even telephoning residents in advance of a strike to give them time to evacuate.

    Perhaps the Palestinians should have a 2nd look at the offer made in 2000, recognize Israel, and renounce violence. (Like that will ever happen.)