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Old 11-08-2012, 11:16 AM
 
Location: Barrington
45,937 posts, read 34,102,318 times
Reputation: 15352

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Quote:
Originally Posted by richrf View Post
I am all for living within our means. I believe this is the strongest and healthiest type of economy. The strongest European economies are Germany, Finland, and Netherlands, all of which adopt this approach. We once had this approach until politicians were given unlimited ability to spend money by the Federal Reserve (under Greenspan and Bernanke) who offered unlimited financing from the money printing press.
Living within their means however, means people pay more to get more.
The tax rates in Germany, for example are progressive and range from 0-45%. There is a solidary surcharge of 5.5% for high income folk, Capital gains are taxed at 25% + the surcharge. Unmarried folk earning less than $10,214 and married couple with incomes less than $20,427 pay no income tax.

VAT is 19% with reduced rates for food. VAT is charged on all goods regardless of source.

This is what it takes to run a country with no deficit and a solid social welfare program, including universal healthcare and a college education without personal debt.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Chicago
5,559 posts, read 3,682,560 times
Reputation: 2181
Quote:
Originally Posted by middle-aged mom View Post
Living within their means however, means people pay more to get more.
The tax rates in Germany, for example are progressive and range from 0-45%. There is a solidary surcharge of 5.5% for high income folk, Capital gains are taxed at 25% + the surcharge. Unmarried folk earning less than $10,214 and married couple with incomes less than $20,427 pay no income tax.

VAT is 19% with reduced rates for food. VAT is charged on all goods regardless of source.

This is what it takes to run a country with no deficit and a solid social welfare program.
Yes, I agree. It is a matter of trade-offs. We can't have everything and a solid economy requires a strong foundation and a good plan for growth. I think the Eisenhower model can be a good model for our country. Wise investments in infrastructure (e.g. the national highway plan), wise choices for defense and social and medical security, and a minimum amount of waste, givebacks, and bloated government projects which are really designed as pay backs to political benefactors. Can we get there? I think the country is ready for it.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Barrington
45,937 posts, read 34,102,318 times
Reputation: 15352
Quote:
Originally Posted by richrf View Post
This is the crux of the problem. How does an economy create new jobs if the general populace is getting poorer and is unable to buy goods or services (less demand). Corporations do not create jobs (in fact the reduce jobs) as demand increases. A good policy would be one that encourages wealth growth among the greatest number of the people. As it stands today, all of the wealth growth over the last 20 years has been at the top 1%.
For all intents and purposes government created the U.S. middle class with the New Deal and GI Bill. Government imposed huge tax burdens on the population post WW2. Over time, the tax burdens substantially declined all the while the population increased and U.S. manufacturing decreased due to global competition and technology. It is what it is.

Every day, 10,000 people turn 65 and will continue to do so through 2030 when almost 20% of the population will be older than 65. It does not take an actuarial fellow to tell us that we have been on an unsustainable path for a long, long time.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:36 AM
 
Location: Chicago
5,559 posts, read 3,682,560 times
Reputation: 2181
Quote:
Originally Posted by middle-aged mom View Post
For all intents and purposes government created the U.S. middle class with the New Deal and GI Bill. Government imposed huge tax burdens on the population post WW2. Over time, the tax burdens substantially declined all the while the population increased and U.S. manufacturing decreased due to global competition and technology. It is what it is.

Every day, 10,000 people turn 65 and will continue to do so through 2030 when almost 20% of the population will be older than 65. It does not take an actuarial fellow to tell us that we have been on an unsustainable path for a long, long time.
Totally agree. There will have to be a very substantial overhaul. The current situation is unsustainable.
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Barrington
45,937 posts, read 34,102,318 times
Reputation: 15352
Quote:
Originally Posted by richrf View Post
Yes, I agree. It is a matter of trade-offs. We can't have everything and a solid economy requires a strong foundation and a good plan for growth. I think the Eisenhower model can be a good model for our country. Wise investments in infrastructure (e.g. the national highway plan), wise choices for defense and social and medical security, and a minimum amount of waste, givebacks, and bloated government projects which are really designed as pay backs to political benefactors. Can we get there? I think the country is ready for it.
Can you imagine any of these "bridges to nowhere" happening in the 50's?

When did we lose the ability to say no thanks and move on?
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Old 11-08-2012, 11:46 AM
 
Location: Home, Home on the Front Range
22,915 posts, read 16,291,511 times
Reputation: 12823
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
But you can't compare that to the USG. We have a printing press that has been going non stop for 4 years. When we don't have the money, we just create some more.
It's been going a heck of a lot longer than the last four years.
Remember neither or the wars was funded, nor was Medicare Part D.

Not picking on Bush II, it goes back further than that: "Star Wars" anyone?


Anyway, I believe that there will be a compromise.
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Old 11-08-2012, 04:32 PM
 
Location: Chicago
5,559 posts, read 3,682,560 times
Reputation: 2181
Quote:
Originally Posted by middle-aged mom View Post
Can you imagine any of these "bridges to nowhere" happening in the 50's?

When did we lose the ability to say no thanks and move on?
It was a different time. Hopefully, this election shows that representatives are accountable and the seats are not as cushy as they use to be. While the turnover was not great, there were many surprises and any time a representative feels their seat may be in play it is good for the electorate. Hope we begin to reverse direction.
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