Taxing the rich...yeah, that works...

Steve

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Because 3 million dollars is more than enough for anyone to pay, in a fair world.
Not if they make $30 million dollars. Didn't you... you know, I could swear that somewhere around here you went on record as being in support of a flat tax. Am I remembering wrong?
 
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billc

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Yes, since the world isn't going to be fair, then we could at least have everyone pay the same flat rate. Would that mean that some millionaires would pay more? Yes. But that doesn't mean it isn't wrong. It isn't fair to have some pay so much more than others, the same way it isn't right to have the really poor pay more than a very small token amount to at least be contributing something. I don't want Pgsmith to pay so much, but that doesn't mean I want Romney to pay more either. A flat tax gives the politicians less wiggle room to screw us over, and it isn't as immoral as hitting some innocent people with tax rates over 20 percent, be they rich, middle class or poor.
 

Steve

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Yes, since the world isn't going to be fair, then we could at least have everyone pay the same flat rate. Would that mean that some millionaires would pay more? Yes. But that doesn't mean it isn't wrong. It isn't fair to have some pay so much more than others, the same way it isn't right to have the really poor pay more than a very small token amount to at least be contributing something. I don't want Pgsmith to pay so much, but that doesn't mean I want Romney to pay more either. A flat tax gives the politicians less wiggle room to screw us over, and it isn't as immoral as hitting some innocent people with tax rates over 20 percent, be they rich, middle class or poor.
Fair, by it's very definition, means something is equitable and just. It seems pretty obvious to me that a flat rate on all income is about as fair as taxation can get. Whether that rate is 0% or 20%, if it's the same for everyone, it's completely fair. I'm not sure how you can suggest that a flat tax is anything other than exceedingly fair.

Once again, though, if a flat tax were advantageous to the upper 20%, we would already have it. Money is power, and if a flat tax reduced the burden on the rich, it would have been rammed through Congress decades ago.
 

pgsmith

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The problem is actually the same one that grants corporate CEOs incredibly exhorbitant salaries. In the case of CEOs, the board of directors decides their salaries, and the CEO helps to set the benefits for the board of directors, you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. Politicians and the rich are exactly the same. The rich give money to the politicians so the politicians can become one of them. In return, the politicians work to make sure the laws favor the rich, because they are now a part of that group and so helping themselves. It used to be that all of this wheeling and dealing was done in back rooms and under the table because people would be outraged if the newspapers discovered what was going on. However, it has become so commonplace today that none of the players have a problem with being seen as underhanded and greedy, and the newspapers only report what their company (and the political party said company is partners with) lets them.

I don't know what the answer is. The rich (including the politicians) will continue to get richer since they are the only players in this game. The rest of us don't matter because we hold such a small stake in their power/money game. I just simply try to get by without compromising my morals and principles. I'll tell you what though, if I made 150 million a year, I'd be happy to pay 50 million in taxes. If I can't live in the best of style for 100 million a year with more than I can count left over, then something is seriously wrong with me. :)
 

granfire

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The problem is actually the same one that grants corporate CEOs incredibly exhorbitant salaries. In the case of CEOs, the board of directors decides their salaries, and the CEO helps to set the benefits for the board of directors, you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. Politicians and the rich are exactly the same. The rich give money to the politicians so the politicians can become one of them. In return, the politicians work to make sure the laws favor the rich, because they are now a part of that group and so helping themselves. It used to be that all of this wheeling and dealing was done in back rooms and under the table because people would be outraged if the newspapers discovered what was going on. However, it has become so commonplace today that none of the players have a problem with being seen as underhanded and greedy, and the newspapers only report what their company (and the political party said company is partners with) lets them.

I don't know what the answer is. The rich (including the politicians) will continue to get richer since they are the only players in this game. The rest of us don't matter because we hold such a small stake in their power/money game. I just simply try to get by without compromising my morals and principles. I'll tell you what though, if I made 150 million a year, I'd be happy to pay 50 million in taxes. If I can't live in the best of style for 100 million a year with more than I can count left over, then something is seriously wrong with me. :)

But you forgot that there has been some fair amount of brain washing going on so that some dirt poor bastard keeps supporting and defending that sick game...without having the snowball's chance in hell of ever joining that club....
 
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billc

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Well, I hope you get that rich pgsmith, and we'll see how readily you give 50 million dollars to greedy politicians who have done nothing to earn that money and use it for their purposes, rather than yours.
 

pgsmith

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Well, I hope you get that rich pgsmith, and we'll see how readily you give 50 million dollars to greedy politicians who have done nothing to earn that money and use it for their purposes, rather than yours.
It'll never happen. I am tied too tightly to my principals, and had poor parents. :)
 
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billc

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What principals would keep you from getting rich? You don't like hard work or long hours? I can understand that. The people who get really rich are usually rich as a by product of their work. If it wasn't a by product, they would stop working as soon as they were rich. Most, Rush, Trump, Gates, Jobs, and the others work because they love what they do and fortunately for them, what they do pays really well.
 

elder999

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The people who get really rich are usually rich as a by product of their work.

While I have no statistics, they'd be interesting.This is not necessarily true-most of the rich people I've met were born that way, rich as a byproduct of their father, grandfather, or even great-great grandfather's work.

If it wasn't a by product, they would stop working as soon as they were rich. Most, Rush, Trump, Gates, Jobs, and the others work because they love what they do and fortunately for them, what they do pays really well.

This is mostly true-a lot of people are raised to recognize the value of work beyond that of a paycheck-they don't necessarily "love what they do," but they must do something-and, in trhe case of Gates and Jobs, they do have a passion for it. In the case of Gates and Jobs, they also had the support and backing of others.

In the case of Trump, daddy was rich. He just got richer.....

As for Mr. Smith's principles, well, they could vary widely. I can tell you that few people succeed to the extent of making what I call "Middle Finger," or FTW (for "**** the world") money without at least steppign on a few toes or bending a few rules. I know that was the case for me. For the Gates and Jobs of the world, it resulted in documented, lifelong enmity and several court cases-people still actually think of Bill Gates as 'evil."
 
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billc

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On inherited wealth...

http://blogs.wsj.com/wealth/2008/01/14/the-decline-of-inherited-money/

For the sake of brevity, I didnt cite the research behind the statement. But since many of you have asked, and we aim to please here at the Wealth Report, here are my three main data points:
1. According to a study of Federal Reserve data conducted by NYU professor Edward Wolff, for the nations richest 1%, inherited wealth accounted for only 9% of their net worth in 2001, down from 23% in 1989. (The 2001 number was the latest available.)
2. According to a study by Prince & Associates, less than 10% of todays multi-millionaires cited inheritance as their source of wealth.
3. A study by Spectrem Group found that among todays millionaires, inherited wealth accounted for just 2% of their total sources of wealth.
Each of these stats measures slightly different things, yet they all come to the same basic conclusion: Inheritance is not the main driver of todays wealth. The reason weve had a doubling in the number of millionaires and billionaires over the past decade (even adjusted for inflation) is that more of the non-wealthy have become wealthy.
 

elder999

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The conclusion of your quote makes an illogical assumption-naturally, the children of the wealthy get richer if they do something with it-this is,after all, the real function of wealth: to make more wealth. My net worth is quite a bit higher than my father's, and my family trust has grown as well, but I wouldn't have been able to achieve all I did in business if I hadn't had some money to start out with........now that my father's dead (25 years, now) I have "inherited wealth," but my personal net worth had already exceeded it because of what I did with money that came to me through my family trust. Of course, I wouldn't cite "inheritance" as my source of wealth, any more than Donald Trump would, but he wouldn't be "the Donald" without having started out in his father's business and taking it over.
 

pgsmith

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What principals would keep you from getting rich? You don't like hard work or long hours? I can understand that. The people who get really rich are usually rich as a by product of their work. If it wasn't a by product, they would stop working as soon as they were rich. Most, Rush, Trump, Gates, Jobs, and the others work because they love what they do and fortunately for them, what they do pays really well.
My principles keep me from employing the ruthlessness necessary to become very rich. I've had personal conversations with Ross Perot, who told me that it requires ruthless drive to amass great wealth, and he's made a great number of life-long enemies that were casualties of that ruthless drive. Bill Gates stole the original code for Windows from his partners. I was involved in the electronics industry back when that happened, and there was much discussion about it on certain Darpa net sites.

When I bought the home that I'm in now, the fellow that sold it to me deliberately covered up dozens of problems, and then lied to me about it in order to make more money on the sale. When I sold my house to move into my present one, I walked the prospective buyer around and told him about the issues that I knew of with the house. Now I could have hidden some things and covered over some things, and made a bit more money on that sale. However, I just wouldn't feel right doing that. When I sold my house, I felt good about myself and it made the buyer happy knowing that there weren't any problems covered up and hidden away. Those are the sort of principles that have made sure that I never got rich. I have no problem with hard work or long hours. I've been working hard since my first job at age 13. However, it takes a lot more than hard work and long hours to become one of the very wealthy and I, luckily in my opinion, just don't have what it takes. :)
 

Steve

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For the record, all of my wealth is a result of my own work and effort, and while it might not qualify as a fortune, I don't know why it's less important for me to keep it than someone who is rich.

Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk 2
 
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billc

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One thing that always seems odd to me. Pgsmith, you said if you made 150 million dollars you would be happy to pay 50 million in taxes? Why? You would be giving that 50 million dollars over to the control of what almost every post on politics here on the study admits is a group of corrupt, greedy, degenerates who became politicians. They will use that 50 million dollars to line their own pockets, increase their own power and to get even more than that 50 million dollars from you. What they don't steal, they will waste or allow to be taken in fraud, and then they will print money to cover the money needed to fund the programs they were supposed to be supporting with your 50 million dollars. Wouldn't it make more sense for you to dole out that 50 million dollars to charities that you control? Wouldn't you do a better job of helping the really poor get a leg up because of your 50 million dollars? Why give it to politicians when you would handle it better and more efficiently?
 

elder999

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. They are ethical and rich


And they, at the very least, pissed somebody off. More likely, though, they screwed somebody-ethically or not. One can play well within "the rules," and still **** somebody over.

Back in the 80's, I started a lucrative business exporting cars to South and Central America-and sometimes Mexico-with a couple of pals. I had an in to insurance auctions, one friend had an auto shop, and another had an in to the Bolivian government, and the Peruvian consulate. We exported Pontiac Trans-Ams to South America. I got them for like, 4-7 thousand dollars, and sold them for three or four times as much-never mind other cars like Porsches, Bentleys, Rollses, Lambos, Ferraris, etc., etc., etc. We made a lot of money-me, I started making money on **** like Crazy Glue, because we had to pay for space volume as well as shipping weight, and I didn't want all that extra transportainer volume to go to waste-a car basically leaves a little more than its entire volume empty in a standard transportainer, so I filled that space up with crap like Crazy Glue, and make up. Made a fortune. Had to negotiate my way through various nation's import laws, and figure out what there was a market for in those places, but made a small fortune-made even more money helping other people navigate through what would sell where, and how to get it there, and started an export management company.

Did not let my "embassy contact" in on that little deal, and it took a loooong time to repair our friendship.Kit and I are cool now, but only because he's known me since I was 15 or so,and I was good friends with his younger brothers and his mom, and I bought a goddam Porsche from him for top-dollar. Otherwise, he really, really, hated the crap out of me, and he's one of those guys who was born with more money than goddam God, and really-to my mind-had no business in my new business.

I didn't even think about offering him a piece-to this day, I think he was more pissed at my letting Tony get in on it than he was at my not offering it to him.

When I got around to selling the business, after I'd stood it up and started to make a really substantial profit, and become bored to **** with it-:lfao:- I bought Tony out of his share, so that I could maximize my profit from selling it and licensing my name-I still make money off the business, but Tony hasn't made a dime-or talked to me in close to 20 years. To my mind, maybe rightly so: it was my business. It was my name. He made a lot of money-off of me. I miss my friend, but-and this is the difference-I'd easily miss the close to $200,000 a year I still get from that business, as well as the money from the sale, a lot more than I've missed Tony, who's fun, but just not that bright, when you get down to it, and should count himself lucky that he made any money from exporting Revlon products (Peter Revson went to the same boarding school as I did, and helped me out to help himself out....:lol:) and Crazy Glue at all because of me.

Tony named his first born "Aaron," after me. I stood up with him when he got married. Before that, his grandfather would set us up with packages in Las Vegas-hookers and everything.I kept him out of jail on more than one occasion, and he rescued me from a pretty dire situation in Puerto Rico on another. I was never as close to him as I was to the people I knew before college-the people I grew up with- but we were really close, and he thinks I ****ed him over, and I think I didn't, and I really, really, really don't care: Tony would have said-always said- that "money and family come before everything else" back then, and he was neither....except for posting this, I haven't given it much of a thought at all since 1986 when my daughter was born, or may 1987, when my dad died, and his grandfather sent flowers.

Wanna get rich? Unless you're J.K. Rowling or have a "basic patent invention," be prepared to screw someone over, or have them think you did, or just be very, very, very, ****ing lucky.

And you will probably be-whether you know it or not-very, very ****ing lucky.

And that's just "rich," not very rich, or very, very rich-like Oprah or Trump rich.

"Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me. -F. Scott Fitzgerald
 

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