[rescue] Re: Taxes (was: Computerfests)

Jonathan C. Patschke jp at celestrion.net
Sat Apr 17 17:17:39 CDT 2004

On Sat, 17 Apr 2004, Andrew Weiss wrote:

> I'm talking about the bulk of upper 6 digit makers and 7 and 8 and nine
> digit makers who do absolutely nothing.

I don't feel that it's the government's place to punish those people.
As much as I hate suits, I believe they have the same rights that I do.
If they get paid 7 or 8 digits to sit on around in Armani suits, hey,
that's something for my to envy.  If that's all I had to do, I could get
some terrific hacking done, what with not having to work a second job to
pay off past debts and make the house payment.

The public, in general, are sheep.  And it is that fact that keeps those
people in power.  In fact, it's that fact that keeps politicians in
power.  We need education, not regulation, IMO.

> They are just as guilty of being freeloaders on us taxpayers as
> those who have next to nothing...and more so because paying taxes at
> a lower salary hurts a LOT more.

I don't see that as part of the problem.  Sure it hurts more.  So does a
car payment, a house payment, college, etc.  This is motivation for the
aforementioned ass-busting. ;)

> That doesn't work.  The grand majority of them are that way because
> some deadbeat knocked them up and left them in the lurch.  They sure as
> hell need help making ends meet.  If that means taking their children
> fine... but why would you target the women in this case... it's not
> necessarily their fault ALL the time.  Why are they on crack... why are
> they selling their bodies?  They were denied the education to make the
> right choices and various other services because the greedy decided
> they didn't want to pay taxes.

I don't believe that education should be the responsibility of the
taxpayer.  We're okay with the idea of paying for college, why aren't we
okay with the idea of paying for -all- education?  School finance is a
hot issue in local governement.  Texas and California rank near the top
in school spending.  CA has the last or second-to-last ranked education
system in the country.  TX isn't too much better.  More funding is not
the answer.  More efficient use of funding is.

Fiat funding tends to lead to slack attention to efficiency.  I see this
firsthand every day, working for a state agency.  In august (the last
month of our fiscal year), it's the worst, since that end-of-year
spending frenzy takes hold and we buy all manner of useless crap in
order to keep our funding.  No one ever asks if we're overfunded.

I saw the same thing in public education when I helped out with
administrative duties at my high school.  In the last few months of the
school year, teachers would buy all sorts of useless crap just to keep
their budgets.

If you take away fiat funding, and schools are funded directly by the
parents of the students attending, you have a competitive incentive to:

   1) Use money efficiently, because there's no guarantee of it being
      there next year.
   2) Provide the best education possible and otherwise keep parents
      happy so that they'll get more students in the future.

You and I have fundamental differences of opinion on this.  I'm a
libertarian, and you're slightly more socialist.  Both are equally valid
ways of getting the job done.  In fact, if I have to be totally honest,
I'd -love- to see a socialist society work out without the inherent
corruption on behalf of those governing the socialst machine.  Because,
hell, if all we had to do was put in an honest day's work, and
everything would be guaranteed, we could ALL put a lot more of our
energies into out craft after-hours and we'd all benefit.

The difference is that I don't think that can happen because of the
inherent inefficiency and tendency towards corruption that cames with
centralized governmental control.  So, I'd rather see people take care
of themselves and leave the government solely to take care of crime,
roads, and borders.

And this thread should really move to geeks...

Jonathan Patschke  ) "Being on the Internet is not the same as being
Elgin, TX         (   famous.  That's like calling Cheetos 'dinner'."
USA                )                                    --Metal Steve

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