This How The Average Consumer Spends Their Paycheck infographic is nice, but I’d really like to see this data paired with where this family’s taxpayer dollars also go. It’s interesting to see 6.37% of their income go to health care; it’d be more interesting to see how high the number is when you factor in their tax […]Read more
We don’t pick up weapons to kill people, to start the revolution… the revolution is really easy to do nowadays. What is the system? The system revolves around the banks. It’s based on the power of the banks… so it must be destroyed starting with the banks. This means that the 3 million people with their placards on the street… they go to the bank, withdraw their money from the banks and these ones collapse. 10 million people and the banks collapse and there is not real threat, a real revolution. We must go to the bank. In this case there would be a real revolution. It’s not complicated. You simply go to the bank in your country and withdraw your money. If there are enough people withdrawing their money, the system collapses. No weapon, no blood, or anything like that.
Above is a chart of California’s municipal bond fund prices, reacting to the news below, via Reuters: California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said on Thursday he will call a special session of the state legislature on December 6 to tackle the budget deficit, newly estimated at more than $25 billion through the next fiscal year. Schwarzenegger said […]Read more
Why Dow 11,000 Is Worth a Lot Less Now Than in 2001: Adjusted for inflation (as per the Bureau of Labor Statistics), the Dow would have to reach 13,570 to equal the “purchasing power” value of Dow 11,000 in 2001. ($1 in 2001 equals $1.23 in 2010.) Let’s take a hypothetical investment in the Dow […]Read more
The Top 10 Places in America Poised for Recovery: Starring Austin, Texas and the rest of the Texaplex, Raleigh-Durham, NC, and introducing Salt Lake City, Utah. (Thanks to the Analog Sherpa for the link.)Read more
The Economist: Daily Chart: The world’s richest women. Women of Chinese origin make up over half of this list of “self-made” billionaires; J.K. Rowling sneaks in at number 20.Read more
We should revise our abominable tax code in a way that is less destructive to the economy. In particular, taxes should not: discourage hard work and risk taking, impede capital formation, impose high costs for computation and enforcement, favor particular groups or activities, or intrude on individual liberty any more than is absolutely necessary. Given these preconditions, I believe a national sales tax would be ideal. If Congress insists on taxing income, then a flat tax (whereby all taxpayers pay the same rate with no special deductions or credits for politically favored expenses) would be best. Unfortunately, we are stuck with the most harmful system of all: a complex, progressive income tax, with lots of politically motivated loopholes, deductions, and credits, that encourages a raft of unproductive activities, and supports an entire class of unneeded service providers to calculate.
By failing to address the spending side of the equation, neither the Democrats’ nor the Republicans’ current proposals will provide any genuine stimulus. The President’s version will temporarily increase the purchasing power of the middle class, but the gains will come at the price of larger deficits, bringing larger tax increases down the road. By bringing down savings, which President Obama ironically touts as a benefit, the plan will diminish private investment, thereby slowing job growth.
While the Republicans’ distaste for high taxes is admirable, they fail to see how increased borrowing or printing is worse. Unfortunately, after having been in the majority for twelve years with nothing to show on the cost-cutting side, those Republicans who do advocate for fiscal prudence have little credibility with the voters. Without corresponding cuts in spending, the full benefits of lower taxes – particularly as they apply to the rich – will never be realized. In the current environment, extra savings accumulated by the rich are largely “invested” in government securities rather than private sector ventures. Throwing more money into a government abyss can’t help economic growth.
Rather than trying to disguise another misguided round of stimulus in the cloak of a tax cut, we should deliver what the economy really needs – genuinely smaller government. However, to accomplish this, we need leaders who not only understand economics but have the political will to level with the American people about how much government we can really afford.
US Drops From First To Seventh In Average Wealth Per Adult, Behind Singapore, Sweden, And… France (Thanks to Colin for the link.)Read more