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Old 05-17-2013, 03:04 PM
 
Location: Ohio
10,913 posts, read 6,118,745 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Think4Yourself View Post
Brad DeLong : Thomas Jefferson on Wealth Inequality

So Jefferson says that protecting the middle class is the most important thing for a healthy democracy, that the poor should be exempted from paying any taxes, and that the government should progressively tax the wealthy at higher rates the richer they are. That it should be government policy to eleveate poverty and the poor should even receive free handouts in the form of freeland for the poor to farm. That's almost exactly what liberals have been advocating for the last century and the exact opposite of what regressive right wingers are constantly demanding.
I'm sure Göbbels would be flattered by your attempt to imitate him.

And now for today's English and Grammar lessons....

The property of this country is absolutely concentrated in a very few hands, having revenues of from half a million of guineas a year downwards.

Um, "this country" would be what, exactly?

Well, those who can truly think for themselves, would not have missed this part....

This is a village of about 15,000 inhabitants when the court is not here, and 20,000 when they are, occupying a valley through which runs a brook and on each side of it a ridge of small mountains, most of which are naked rock. The King comes here, in the fall always, to hunt. His court attend him, as do also the foreign diplomatic corps; but as this is not indispensably required and my finances do not admit the expense of a continued residence here, I propose to come occasionally to attend the King's levees, returning again to Paris, distant forty miles.

Jefferson is very obviously talking about France, and not about the Confederacy known as the United States of America.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Think4Yourself View Post
Some other interesting quotes from notable historical figures about the dangers of income inequality and why the government should take measures against it.
Income Inequality (snicker) is a matter of personal choice.

Netflix or buy stocks/bonds/Certificates of Deposit.....
Netflix or buy stocks/bonds/Certificates of Deposit.....
Netflix or buy stocks/bonds/Certificates of Deposit.....


People who can think for themselves immediately recognize propaganda, especially when Orwellian phrases like Weapons of Mass Destruction, Wealth Inequality and Income Inequality are used.
Earnings are one's wages/salary.

Income certainly includes Earnings, but the definition of Income is the total of all Earnings, plus monies derived from Assets.

Wealth is the sum total of Income --- Earnings and other monies --- plus Assets.

So, the Stupid Class has a choice:

1] the Stupid Class can purchase a McMansion with 0% down-payment and get buried using their house as a credit card; or

2] the Stupid Class can purchase a two-family or three-family home, renovate the 2nd Floor while living on the 1st Floor, then move up to the 2nd Floor, renovate the 1st Floor, rent it out to derive Income, remodel the 3rd Floor Apartment and rent it out to derive additional income, then purchase a McMansion and simultaneously rent out all 3 units.

Understand it doesn't matter to me what the Stupid Class does, so long as the Stupid Class pays for their own mistakes and doesn't try to take everyone else's money.

The Stupid Class could also forgo their 'Droids and use that money to purchase stocks, bonds or other property or assets from which they could derive Income....

...but the Stupid Class has repeatedly demonstrated that it has no desire for Income, Assets or Wealth.

If any "Income Inequality" (snicker) exists, then it is 100% self-inflicted and not some kind of conspiracy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Think4Yourself View Post
Using the government policy to decrease income inequality is just good economics and good government policy.
No doubt, there's some part of "One cannot violate the Laws of Economics" that you don't understand.

Refuting....


Mircea
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Old 05-17-2013, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
3,931 posts, read 1,951,928 times
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Well, I think you need to put Thomas Jefferson's words in context. He is not talking about money or wealth in an absolute sense. He is really talking about property, which really means "land".

Thomas Jefferson idealized the Yeoman farmer, which is effectively a sort of subsistence farmer, or at least a small farmer. When he discusses how there might be uncultivated land and people who are unemployed. And how he believes that that interferes with the "natural rights" of humans. It is in reference to his views on land, and has nothing to do with wealth/money or income.

He is not discussing income inequality, nor progressive income taxation. He is talking about land ownership inequality, and the desire for progressive taxation on property(property taxes).


The reason why he has his reservations about land. Was his complaints that where he was in Europe, most of the land was owned by a handful of extremely rich individuals. Much of that land was used only for hunting, not for farming. And that since these individuals were rich, and there was basically no tax directly on the holding of property, that they had no need to cultivate this land. While at the same time, there were many people who were horribly poor and hungry, who owned no land.

Thus, Thomas Jefferson's complaint was not about income or wealth directly. It was about how it was sort of unfair for a person who owned a lot of land, to not use his land, while others who had no land(or very little), starved. And that the only way to convince people to use land, especially their surplus land, in a way that would be beneficial to society(to cultivate it, or to just sell it off to someone who would cultivate it). Would be to progressively tax the land. Which would prevent people just "sitting on the land", since otherwise, sitting on the land would come at no cost.


The point is, Thomas Jefferson was not discussing progressive taxation in the sense that the rich owe something to the poor. It has absolutely nothing to do with welfare or anything of that sort.. He was simply talking about progressive property taxation, to make sure land is being used for some kind of productive means, that would benefit society. Which he hoped that higher property taxes would open the way for wealthy landowners to sell their unused land to avoid paying the taxes on it, to small farmers who would cultivate the land. Which he believed was necessary for his "Yeoman" farmer(small farmer) ideal.

This is also the concept of the "homestead acts". Which handed sections of land to people for free, as long as they promised to "improve" the land.


Basically, Thomas Jefferson believed that the property tax would actually enable people to work and provide for themselves. In Thomas Jefferson's view of taxation, the government doesn't spend a penny on anyone at all. There weren't to be government programs for the poor. There weren't to be guarantees of anything to anyone. To pretend Thomas Jefferson is thinking in any way a concept of "welfare" is dishonest. And while it does appear to be a form of wealth redistribution. I think that would be a slight exaggeration. Because he made no argument against a single individual owning all of the land, as long as they were being productive with it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 03:29 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
3,931 posts, read 1,951,928 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Think4Yourself View Post
So Jefferson says that protecting the middle class is the most important thing for a healthy democracy, that the poor should be exempted from paying any taxes, and that the government should progressively tax the wealthy at higher rates the richer they are. That it should be government policy to eleveate poverty and the poor should even receive free handouts in the form of freeland for the poor to farm. That's almost exactly what liberals have been advocating for the last century and the exact opposite of what regressive right wingers are constantly demanding.
Well, Thomas Jefferson makes absolutely no mention of the middle class.

The only two groups of people he is really discussing in his letter, are people who own uncultivated land, and unemployed people.

His argument is that, those with uncultivated land should basically allow those who are unemployed to cultivate their land. And that, it was against the natural rights of man, for one person to own all the land and do nothing with it, while others went hungry.

And truthfully, he was writing his letter while he was in France, prior to the French Revolution. And I'm pretty sure those rich French landowners that he referred to in his letter, got their heads chopped off, and their lands seized as a consequence of their wastefulness.
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Old 05-17-2013, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Ohio
10,913 posts, read 6,118,745 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwkilgore View Post
The disconnect from a poverty-level minimum wage worker saying that his millionaire boss needs a tax cut is almost impossible for a sane person to wrap their mind around.
Which, um, "Poverty Level" (snicker)?

The so-called "Poverty Level" (snicker) of $11,500 for one person as reported by the illegal National Government is merely an average of all of the so-called "poverty levels" for the several States (excluding Hawaii and Alaska), but the funny thing is Reality.....

$11,500 equals $6038.85 per year in Cincinnati
$11,500 equals $21861.80 per year in San Fransisco

In other words, due to the fantastic differences in the cost-of-living throughout the entire United States, a person in Cincinnati is not impoverished unless their Income is below $6,000 yet someone living in San Francisco is in poverty at $21,000.

The minimum wage foisted on people by the illegal National Government is $7.25/hour...

$7.25 * 40 * 52 = $15,080

$15,080 is 2.49x greater than the true poverty level for Ohio.

Good luck debunking that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovcatto View Post
Here the crickets... chirp, chirp, chirp...
That only proves Conservatives aren't paid to roam C-D.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovcatto View Post
This thread is going to sink faster than the Titanic. Too bad.
Yes, well, as I proved, Jefferson was not talking about the Confederacy under the Articles of Confederation, rather he was talking about the situation in France.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ovcatto View Post
And what was the upshot regarding the fact that inherited wealth was concentrated in few hands and how such wealth should be... drum roll... redistributed?
Whenever there are in any country uncultivated lands and unemployed poor, it is clear that the laws of property have been so far extended as to violate natural right. The earth is given as a common stock for man to labor and live on. If for the encouragement of industry we allow it to be appropriated, we must take care that other employment be provided to those excluded from the appropriation. If we do not, the fundamental right to labor the earth returns to the unemployed. It is too soon yet in our country to say that every man who cannot find employment, but who can find uncultivated land, shall be at liberty to cultivate it, paying a moderate rent. But it is not too soon to provide by every possible means that as few as possible shall be without a little portion of land. The small landholders are the most precious part of a state.
So, what part of "every possible means that as few as possible shall be without a little portion of land." Do you not understand?
What part of "Context" do you not understand?

Jefferson was specifically discussing the situation in France.

Why would you also refuse to consider the social and cultural context?

Contextually...


Mircea
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Old 05-17-2013, 04:03 PM
 
Location: Under Mount Doom
9,248 posts, read 6,111,870 times
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This thread demonstrates that even such an "individualist" as Jefferson recognized the consequences of inequality, and he could temper his ideas with reality. Our current bunch of ideologs have no interest in proportion or reality, which shows they are fundamentalists, not thoughtful citizens.

No one wants to tax anyone over 50%, but going to 30% on capital gains,etc. would go a long way towards helping to balance our budget, and it would not cause the wealthiest to suffer much at all in real terms. But such sensible ,centrist ideas are now considered socialist hell by the right wing dittoheads. They are in their own private Idaho.
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Old 05-17-2013, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Where they serve real ale.
7,250 posts, read 3,098,662 times
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I love how the usual dullards are doing everything to avoid admitting what the man actually wrote.

I told you it would happen. The right wing conservatives would put their heads in the sand and ignore FACTS when those facts and reality contradict their cherished dogma and the talking points which have been spoon fed to them. If there is one thing conservatives never do it is think for themselves.
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:03 PM
 
8,101 posts, read 2,145,431 times
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Was Jefferson including black people in his ideals? lol
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:05 PM
 
31,385 posts, read 18,550,992 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea View Post
Jefferson was specifically discussing the situation in France.

Why would you also refuse to consider the social and cultural context?

Contextually...


Mircea
That was my point. Aim your knives at your opponents.
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:37 PM
 
Location: ATX-HOU
5,962 posts, read 2,676,098 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadking2003 View Post
Those are two unrelated topics.

And no, a powerful centralized government is not necessary in the modern global marketplace.

Competing in a global marketplace and having a Nanny State are unrelated topics.
What global power doesn't have a strong centralized govt?
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Midwest City, Oklahoma
3,931 posts, read 1,951,928 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Think4Yourself View Post
I love how the usual dullards are doing everything to avoid admitting what the man actually wrote.

I told you it would happen. The right wing conservatives would put their heads in the sand and ignore FACTS when those facts and reality contradict their cherished dogma and the talking points which have been spoon fed to them. If there is one thing conservatives never do it is think for themselves.

When I first read the excerpts from the letter, and the interpretations by the C-D P&OC posters. I was shocked by what I "thought" Thomas Jefferson was saying. But if you actually read what his letter states, and understand it. You'll realize that it isn't quite what it sounds like.


You have to understand that the primary goal of Thomas Jefferson, was to create a nation of small farmers(Yeoman farmers). Thomas Jefferson hated the cities, and believed they were always corrupt and exploitative(as well as the government).

Yeoman - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jefferson had hoped that, if land was taxed at relatively high rates. That it would force landholders to either rent their property, sell their property, or be productive with it. If they rented out their property, that would increase employment. If they sold their property, it would increase employment. And if they cultivated their property, it would increase employment.

Anyway, the important part of Thomas Jefferson's letter is this...

"Whenever there are in any country uncultivated lands and unemployed poor, it is clear that the laws of property have been so far extended as to violate natural right. The earth is given as a common stock for man to labor and live on. If for the encouragement of industry we allow it to be appropriated, we must take care that other employment be provided to those excluded from the appropriation. If we do not, the fundamental right to labor the earth returns to the unemployed. It is too soon yet in our country to say that every man who cannot find employment, but who can find uncultivated land, shall be at liberty to cultivate it, paying a moderate rent. But it is not too soon to provide by every possible means that as few as possible shall be without a little portion of land. The small landholders are the most precious part of a state."


The more important part of understanding Thomas Jefferson, was that his ideas basically had absolutely nothing to do with collectivism. Or at least nothing to do with any sort of welfare-type policy. The taxes on property weren't to be used for the public good. And if you really examine the consequences of his policy, it was actually to promote individualism. Because he wanted people to be independent and work for themselves on their own land. Completely independent of anyone "above them". Be it wealthy landowners, or the government.

Which was the basis for the "Homestead acts" that happened during the late 1800's and early 1900's. Where the government wanted to basically eliminate large landowners. By giving away small tracts of land to individuals and families. Also, after the Civil War, the large plantations of the South were also carved up and given away.


Basically, Thomas Jefferson's policies advocated individualism, personal responsibility, and independence. I think to argue that Thomas Jefferson was remotely interested in the middle class, or welfare. Is a complete misunderstanding of what he is saying.

Last edited by Redshadowz; 05-17-2013 at 07:48 PM..
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