Political cartoon of the moment: Kevin Siers on Republican flat tax proposals


Republican flat tax proposals and fat cats, Kevin Siers, 10-29-2011

Kevin Siers, Charlotte Observer, October 29, 2011

Kevin Siers is another obvious candidate for a Pulitzer Prize in cartooning, one of these coming years.

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79 Responses to Political cartoon of the moment: Kevin Siers on Republican flat tax proposals

  1. Then there is Pat McCrory, presumed Republican nominee for NC governor who said this gem:

    “You can’t allow the people to take over.”

    Why thank you, Mr. McCrory, for openly admitting our suspicions about Republicans/conservatives…that their intent is to kill democracy.

    You and your party ARE a political cartoon.

    Like

  2. Black Flag® says:

    Jim
    Well, that is disappointing, Jim.

    It appears you’ve run headlong into a self-contradiction; you do not like theft, except when it benefits you and when the risk direct to yourself is low.

    The questions are simple, nor do they infer an unstated contrary conclusion (like the wife/beat example)

    Simply, do you believe in theft or not? If you do not believe in theft, but you justify it when it benefits you you are contradicting yourself.

    It is my belief that contradictions are the root of all human evil.

    God does not allow any contradictions, at all, anywhere in the Universe.

    Thus, the attempt by a man to manifest a contradiction for himself is in direct violation of the will of God. Direct violation of the will of God is evil.

    Thus, if you deny theft, but cheer it when it benefits you, you contradict yourself.

    [church, school administrators, government] are my guides.

    Oh, I see.

    You have abdicated your own reasoning of what is “right” and what is “wrong” to others you deem “authoritative”.

    Such abdication has always led down a dangerous road.

    Like

  3. Black Flag® says:

    James

    Is that the best you can do?

    Post completely irrational and irrelevant drivel?

    Can’t argue the points, but must go into ad homenien?

    Are you at all capable of putting any real thoughts together?

    Like

  4. Jim says:

    Good afternoon, Flag!

    Sorry for a bit of a delay in getting back to you but I have a paper due and my business needed some attention, too.

    I’ve been reviewing all our exchanges and have come to the conclusion that both of us are capable of courtesy and decency — for which I am grateful. But of is either incapable of — or entirely unwilling to entertain what would be considered “good faith” argument in any rational venue.

    Asking questions along the lines of, “Have you stopped beating your wife?” and making statements like “when did you start hating freedom?” are the sort of tactics used by Libertarians, Anarchists, Marxists, Fundamentalist Christians and Rabid Atheists on various message boards. The disappointing thing is that the ones I know personally or online are almost universally very precocious 13 year olds…or, at worst, grown children living in Mom and Dad’s basement and blogging in between old Star Trek reruns.

    I know that is not you — you’re a mathemetician, a Dad and a traveling businessman — so please don’t hear me saying that is you. Part of me wishes it was you, though. Because there is a serious disconnect going on. Maybe it’s me and perhaps you and Ayn Rand were correct — selfishness is a virtue.

    I’m not buying it, though. The Scriptures of the Old and New Testament…and the Preamble to the Constitution…are my guides. I’m at a seminary known for its scholarly excellence right now, working on my Masters…so I’m really not buying your dismissal of my theological views as more authoritative than my professors — who hold multiple Ph’ds and Th’ds.

    I’m not sure there’s anywhere for this conversation to go. I do sincerely wish you nothing but the very best and I know you return the good wishes.

    Jim

    Like

  5. Wow, Black, you must have a pretty pathetic and miserble life because you can apparently sit on this blog all day long coming up with complete and utter bullshit and morally depraved nonsense over and over and over again.

    Tell me…you still live in your mother’s basement right?

    Like

  6. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    Could you tell me what questions you are referring to?

    (1) Post regarding robbing banks in favor of your mother.
    (2) Theft is profitable – but do you advise it?

    Second, homeschooling is not always a poor choice.

    I would say it is the preferred choice – but few entertain it.

    After more than 2 decades in Christian broadcasting and countless interviews with homeschool parents and children, I can say that I have met two or three who were intelligent and capable.

    The irrational belief – parents are not capable of teaching their children – though 100,000 years of humanity has demonstrated the contrary.

    The rest were quite brainwashed, mostly obsessed with matters demonic, the fires of hell or the coming of Antichrist.

    As with all those the resist the situation, they are painted as “extremists” and a few examples are exposed to be such.

    Yet, you do not highlight the huge numbers of psychotic families who commit their kids to 12 or more years of imprisonment into school, because -heck- they align with your beliefs so you grace them.

    Your impressions are distorted – and as such I discard them.

    Third, the Reason article is from a decidedly conservative and libertarian perspective.

    …with no links or no references…. couldn’t care less then.

    I complain about Ed’s links as unsupported and he does likewise about others – and thus, I cannot do less here.

    So hardly an anti-religious-right agenda there, my friend. If these quotes are inaccurate, why hasn’t Mr. North filed suit against Reason and the author of the article for slander or libel?

    Because one does not exercise civil law remedies does NOT confirm the lie.

    It maybe financial.
    or
    It maybe the claim is so ridiculous that publicizing the stupidity cost more than the redemption
    or
    It may be hard to defend.

    It is a fallacy to claim that silence is agreement, though most think it is not.

    He personally told me of his support for capital punishment for homosexuals, witches, heretics and abortive women.

    Give it to me in writing.

    But that aside, why would you care?

    You are correct. I don’t – for me.

    However, I am intrigued about the extent of the difference between fact and innuendo, and test it where I have at least some knowledge pro/counter.

    It tests both sides at the same time, and as an observer, I learn.

    It teaches me the “signals” and the “head fakes” … and I become more skilled at identifying the liars.

    You don’t want government of any kind — not Socialist, Capitalist or Christian Reconstructionist.

    “Capitalist” government is a contradiction….you probably mean “Mercantilist”

    However, the coherent definition of government is immune to the “ist” or the “ism” you wish to attach to cause.

    Government is the monopoly on violence within a geographical area.

    It matters not if the justification of violence is religious, social, or mercantile – the violence to promote the system is the evil of the system.

    Like

  7. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    However, I am not Gary North.

    I am Black Flag.

    If my arguments align with someone – it is a signal that the Universe has shoved humanity into a natural law.

    If my arguments are generally misaligned with others – it is signal that the Universe is entertaining a breath of options… and is leaving reason as the determinant.

    Like

  8. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    Whatever happened to North’s Y-2-K predictions? I’m surprised anyone takes him seriously. He’s just another slightly better educated version of Harold Camping or Hal Lindsey. Only more dangerous to liberals like me and heathen heretics like you.

    Run away, my friend. Run away! ;

    Hmmm, no, I will not run.

    If he utilized economic calculation, I will consider his comments.

    If it based on some subjective religious calculation, I will measure only based on the economics.

    Like

  9. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    God forgive me!

    Oh, he does, without reservation, to whoever is brave enough to ask….

    So North HAS disavowed violence.

    This is what I have learned in my life trials.

    We are born, and knowing nothing and needing to survive, we must accept -without test, thus by rote- the wisdom of those we see as “authorities”. Parents, family, friends, teachers, government.

    They have proven they can survive, so it makes sense to copy them so we survive.

    As we grow and learn, we discover that not all their answers are consistently applied.

    This is the moment of truth.
    Do we penetrate the paradigm or do we blindly adhere to it?

    The wise (thus, strong) man holds to the truth, no matter how painful. Few attempt this.

    The weak (thus, immoral) men hold to the paradigm, no matter the truth. Many follow this.

    We all have to make this choice at least once in our lives – and it defines us.

    This is not to condemn or cheer one over the other – the race itself has prospered because most choose the easy way (less risk), but enjoy the rare but utterly massive gains of those that have chosen the hard way.

    In other words, our survival depends on both attitudes – and, naturally, it is a balance between the scared and the reckless.

    If North has disavowed what others have preached to him, he is a brave man.

    Like

  10. Jim says:

    Flag,

    You really got me going, because the Christian Reconstructionist movement probably worries me more than Marxism, Anarchism or Fascism…perhaps because the horrid things they say and do reflect so directly on Jesus.

    I did a bit more research and was baffled to find some written appeals by North (supposedly) excoriating Paul Hill for resorting to murder. I began to wonder if North had moderated since my 1986 conversation with the man. One should not presume a person incapable of changing or moderation. Lord knows, I was once nearly a white supremacist. God forgive me!

    So North HAS disavowed violence. At least, that’s how it seems on the surface. But read what he says in his letter to Hill and about Hill. He tells Hill individual violence…and non-judicial violence…are sinful and wrong. He never quite walks back from his stance favoring mob justice in Political Polytheism. He never comes out and a la Frank Schaeffer writes “I was wrong to urge state or community sponsored execution of”…(you fill in the blank).

    These guys are whack, BF.

    Whatever happened to North’s Y-2-K predictions? I’m surprised anyone takes him seriously. He’s just another slightly better educated version of Harold Camping or Hal Lindsey. Only more dangerous to liberals like me and heathen heretics like you.

    Run away, my friend. Run away! ;-)

    Like

  11. Jim says:

    Hi Flag!

    A few things…

    Could you tell me what questions you are referring to? This is becoming quite a thread and I am up against a few deadlines at present.

    Second, homeschooling is not always a poor choice. After more than 2 decades in Christian broadcasting and countless interviews with homeschool parents and children, I can say that I have met two or three who were intelligent and capable. The rest were quite brainwashed, mostly obsessed with matters demonic, the fires of hell or the coming of Antichrist. But modern homeschooling has its roots in Theonomy and the obscene writings of Rushdoony and his heirs. So of course…

    Third, the Reason article is from a decidedly conservative and libertarian perspective. So hardly an anti-religious-right agenda there, my friend. If these quotes are inaccurate, why hasn’t Mr. North filed suit against Reason and the author of the article for slander or libel?

    Why? Because it accurately reflects his world view. I’ve also cited books by North and Rushdoony. They say these things quite openly.

    I have interviewed Gary North, Constance Cumbey and George Grant about their views. The Reason article accurately reflects North. He personally told me of his support for capital punishment for homosexuals, witches, heretics and abortive women.

    His rationale? We execute those who kill the body. Therefore, God wants us to execute those who also “kill souls”. Hey, guess what? You don’t believe in the deity of Jesus OR the bodily resurrection of Christ. I do. But I believe in abortion rights and gay marriage. So maybe your scalp and mine can share space on the Christian Reconstructionist lodgepole.

    I am definitely not a fan of dispensationalist fundamentalism, but I have to give credit where it is due. Drs. Thomas Ice and Wayne House have written a monumental (if now old) work exposing the heresies of the Theonomy/Christian Reconstructionist movement. It’s called “Dominion Theology: Blessing or Curse” and it’s quite well sourced.

    They, too, cite many of the same statements extant in the Reason piece. So does former Reconstructionist Frank Schaeffer in his recent books. He ran in these circles and drank the kool aid for quite a few years.

    But that aside, why would you care? You don’t want government of any kind — not Socialist, Capitalist or Christian Reconstructionist. I think the only palpable difference between us is that I *don’t* think the first two wish to murder citizens who happen to think, worship or screw in ways deemed “unacceptable”.

    Cheers!

    Jim

    Like

  12. Black Flag® says:

    Ed

    You repudiate the Declaration of Independence.

    No, I don’t.

    You can chose to be ruled by other men

    I do not.

    The Declaration of Independence is a call “for other men to rule over us” only in your weird fantasy world.

    No where does it demand I be ruled.

    Jefferson, erroneously, defined government as a defender of rights – which it is not.

    It is a destroyer of rights.

    One can forgive Jefferson – for he had no experience of history to witness a failure of “limited” government – he was a man of his own time, and believed that government could be restrained.

    Some of us know differently – but you do not, yet.

    However, you, yourself, have no argument or principle from which to support your viewpoint – the best you do is Fallacy of an Appeal to “Authority” - you cannot rise to any argument to support your position – other than “look at what he says that I, myself, cannot comprehend”

    And I know you are terribly afraid to present such a principle – for you know it will lead down a path into dead-end of contradictions – and all the paradigms and systems you have married yourself to will be nothing but an illusion.

    Years ago, my partner and I signed off our first $1 million payroll – it was a memorable day of celebration.

    We wandered down to a local pub for a few brew – and it happened they had a magician as some bar entertainment.

    Near the end, he handed out a 10 questions that he had copied from some MENSA test and challenged that anyone who got all 10 right, he’d buy the a jug of beer.

    I like beer, and as a member of the 1% Club (10% of the 10%) – these questions were not that hard.

    The last one was a mere substitution problem masked within a family relations….. your brother’s sister is…who? type stuff.

    It resolved down to:
    “Who is your grandmother’s son?”

    Well, the obvious answer is:
    “Your Father”

    …but the less obvious is:
    “Your Uncle”

    I wrote down both – he came by …. corrected the first 9, then laughed “YOU GOT THE LAST ONE WRONG!”

    I said – “Ah, no, I didn’t”.. and proceeded to go thru the logic.

    …which then lead to the question “Is not your Uncle also your Grandmother’s son?”

    His face began to contort, his eyes glazed and appeared to wander in different directions, unfocused. He appeared shocked as if hit by a bullet, and seemed to fall into a trace … trying to figure out how this was possible.

    His mind was fighting a contradiction he held:
    (1) MENSA is never wrong.
    (2) His own reasoning said MENSA was wrong.

    Behind me a patron quipped:
    “Hey, that guy is right! It could be your Uncle too!”

    ..and with that, the magician snapped out of his trace – his face flushed red and yelled:
    “YOU ARE TRICKING ME!!!”

    …to which I responded with rare wit:
    “But I thought you were the magician!”

    He stormed away.

    I did not get my jug of beer.

    ………………

    You are that magician, Ed. – you hold immutable -but contradictory – principles.

    And at the end of our adventure, you too will storm off, face flush red, and I will not get my jug of beer.

    Like

  13. Ed Darrell says:

    ” . . . government by consent of the governed here . . .”

    BF said:

    That is what I said.

    You want other men to rule over you.

    You repudiate the Declaration of Independence. As I noted before, you’re absurd, but not in a good, Eugene Ionesco way. You can’t even warble as well as the bald soprano.

    The Declaration of Independence is a call “for other men to rule over us” only in your weird fantasy world. Not here, not in this universe, not in the U.S., not among rational beings. You may choose to opt out of the government George Washington created, but you’re a fool to do it. And you’re an ingrate when you keep calling Washington, Jefferson and Franklin men who chose to be serfs.

    A reductio ad absurdum would be impossible, beyond the absurdity you already show.

    Like

  14. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    I Googled that, and 1,800 hits — and every one of them pointed to the same “Reason” article – and NONE to the article of Rushdooney or North himself, nor did any search on the Heritage Site itself show anything.

    So, at best hearsay….. out of context quotes that can’t be verified….but whatever.

    You don’t need to like him or North if you don’t want to….

    Re: Homeschooling …

    Well, if you want to send your kids to be taught by self-interested individuals who don’t know your kids and who you do not know who they are, either, you can do that too.

    I, myself, choose differently.

    Back on topic:
    And of my questions, Jim? No attempt to answer them?

    Like

  15. Jim says:

    Hi Flag!

    Links…you mean aside from my own interview of the man? Sure.

    This should work…

    http://reason.com/archives/1998/11/01/invitation-to-a-stoning

    (Reason should be a favorite of yours. They are no friend to those of us labeled tree huggers and global warming conspirators.)

    “Why stoning?” asks North. “There are many reasons. First, the implements of execution are available to everyone at virtually no cost.” Thrift and ubiquity aside, “executions are community projects–not with spectators who watch a professional executioner do `his’ duty, but rather with actual participants.”

    In Political Polytheism: The Myth of Pluralism, North not only suggests (on p. 627 & 8) the death penalty for abortive women and “anyone who advised such a procedure”.

    Rushdoony is more general and comprehensive. While North (and presumably Chilton & Bahnsen, if not some others) names witchcraft, abortion, homosexuality, heresy and idolatry as requiring the death penalty, Rushdoony merely says execution is appropriately applied on anyone breaking “God’s Law”. (Institutes of Biblical Law)

    In By This Standard, North and Rushdoony’s disciple, Greg Bahnsen puts it simply, “We endorse God’s entire penal code.” This includes, Christian Reconstructionists and Theonomists assert, Old Testament Law.

    Is it any wonder most of the home-schooling, vigilante murderers like Paul Hill and Eric Rudolph were raised on the teachings of North and Rushdoony?

    No, I am sure it is all pure coincidence.

    Like

  16. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Not at all. We have government by consent of the governed here

    That is what I said.

    You want other men to rule over you.

    Like

  17. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    But with you, Rushdooney like to label as “freedom” his proposals to enslave others

    Ed, you are spewing gibberish

    . Like you, he advocated shirking the duties of citizenship, calling that “freedom” also.

    Why do you believe you have the right to determine my duties?

    Like

  18. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    he shared with you an odd view that our government is too free,

    You think my view is “government is too free

    You better get your eyes checked.

    Like

  19. Ellie says:

    Jim, re: Rushdoony

    You left out his belief that some people (due to the color of their skin, rather than the content of their character) were natural born slaves. He also enthusiastically embraced eugenics and declared that no Jews really existed. He was a Holocaust denialist. All in all, he was a peach of a guy.

    Like

  20. Ed Darrell says:

    I said: “Push him, he may start quoting Rushdooney.”

    I had the pleasure of meeting him – a brilliant, kind gentleman – a most certainly not a “Nazi” – he was a untiring advocate of freedom.

    But to you, Ed, all free men are Nazis, right?

    No Nazi is a free person.

    Rushdooney was not an advocate of freedom, in my book. He was opposed to much of the New Testament’s changes in government and religion advocated by that guy, Jesus, and he shared with you an odd view that our government is too free, tolerating people who disagreed with Rushdooney.

    As Franklin said, or should have, when men agree, one of them isn’t thinking. Rushdooney didn’t tolerate disagreements well, and made it clear that he wished government would not, either. I find much of his philosophy bordering on spousal abuse, and much more firmly ensconced in child abuse.

    But with you, Rushdooney like to label as “freedom” his proposals to enslave others. Like you, he advocated shirking the duties of citizenship, calling that “freedom” also.

    Odd guy, odd philosophies. It was said of Andrew Jackson that a psychiatrist might have prescribed several medications that might have mellowed him some. Jackson would not have taken them. That probably applies to Rushdooney, too.

    I am perplexed at how people swallow, seemingly without thought or question, odd, destructive philsophies of people who use big words and invent jargons. I am intrigued that those same people often regard themselves as skeptics, and not gullibles. They could benefit from the ownership and frequent use of a good dictionary, and a Boy Scout Handbook.

    The SS famously told Jews that “work would make them free.” It’s a definition of freedom unknown to free men, and Christians.

    Like

  21. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    Re: Gary North

    Can you offer some links to where he makes such statements?

    Like

  22. Jim says:

    Ed asks…

    At which post do you think any comments may have been deleted?

    When I clicked on your link, Ed, there they were. I was only seeing one post — by BF. I am not sure my browsers play nicely with WP.

    I knew you wouldn’t remove a post simply because you disagreed with it — that was not the question. I wondered if there was a glitch, a hack or possibly if someone had said something so offensive, you removed it for the sake of common decency. Nick was suggesting some serious support on BF’s part for Nazism and I wondered if maybe BF crossed a line I was unaware of.

    As I have said, the guy has been exceptionally gracious to me in disagreement and I have enjoyed our “roundabouts”.

    That said, if he is a disciple of Rushdoony or North — polite and gracious are meaningless.

    I am sure he is not. Can someone who is an anarchist agree with the the extreme authoritarianism of Rousas Rushdoony?

    Jim

    Like

  23. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Not at all. We have government by consent of the governed here. You choose not to consent. I prefer not to deal with such hotheads, irrationals, and ne’er-do-wells.

    Correct.
    I do not consent.

    So, leave me alone.

    …but you won’t do that, will you?

    Like

  24. Jim says:

    Flag says, I had the pleasure of meeting him – a brilliant, kind gentleman – a most certainly not a “Nazi” – he was a untiring advocate of freedom.

    I, too, have met and read Rousas Rushdooney. He was very polite, very nice. He, and his disciple Gary North, advocate the state-sponsored execution of homosexuals, abortive women and persons who practice Wicca as a religion.

    North goes so far as to advocate stoning as the method of execution for reasons of expense (stones are cheap) and community (the whole village can participate in a stoning, rather than a chosen few in the firing squad or workingthe gallows).

    But bless his little Christian Reconstructionist heart, Dr. North stops short of encouraging parents to allow their children to take part in stoning. He says they should be encouraged to watch, but not participate until they are of age.

    Adolph Hitler and Joe Stalin were quite polite, too.

    I had no idea, BF.

    Disappointed,

    Jim

    Like

  25. Ed Darrell says:

    You wish to have other men rule you.

    Not at all. We have government by consent of the governed here. You choose not to consent. I prefer not to deal with such hotheads, irrationals, and ne’er-do-wells.

    Like

  26. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    “Anarchist” would be more accurate.

    You wish to have other men rule you.

    I do not.

    Push him, he may start quoting Rushdooney.

    I had the pleasure of meeting him – a brilliant, kind gentleman – a most certainly not a “Nazi” – he was a untiring advocate of freedom.

    But to you, Ed, all free men are Nazis, right?

    Like

  27. Ed Darrell says:

    Jim, you have to remember that Black is a wannabe Nazi

    “Anarchist” would be more accurate. Push him, he may start quoting Rushdooney. “Nazi-esque” is not Nazi, though.

    Like

  28. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,
    I’ve left a couple of questions out there for you….

    Hope you can offer an answer – honestly….

    Have a good evening!

    Like

  29. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,
    Re: Reuben

    I guess there was two, concurrent, threads on the same thing —

    I, too, got lost in your bubble bath…..

    Like

  30. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    It is incredibly tiresome to do the work you should be doing.

    It seriously detracts from your credibility, because you end up looking like an idiot.

    Just a friendly suggestion – do some basic research….

    Like

  31. Black Flag® says:

    Justices Rule Police Do Not Have a Constitutional Duty to Protect Someone

    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/06/28/politics/28scotus.html

    Like

  32. Ed Darrell says:

    Please explain the “Reuben” thread, if you can.

    Why are all the posts deleted?

    No posts have been deleted. If you wish to keep track of a thread, you may want to subscribe to the post.

    Subscribe here, at the 2011 encore: http://timpanogos.wordpress.com/2011/10/31/we-remember-reuben-james-sunk-october-31-1941/

    Or subscribe here, at the 2008 original: http://timpanogos.wordpress.com/2008/10/31/uss-reuben-james-sunk-october-31-1941/

    At which post do you think any comments may have been deleted?

    Like

  33. Black Flag® says:

    Damnit, Ed, learn to use Google

    Like

  34. Ed Darrell says:

    With no dissent on the bench, and in every case, the verdict has been . . .

    Doesn’t sound right to me — and, of course, there is no case citation. Quotes claimed to be from cases, but with words that don’t fit . . .

    B.F. leads an interesting fantasy life.

    Like

  35. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Please explain the “Reuben” thread, if you can.

    Why are all the posts deleted?

    Like

  36. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    Thanks for the support – I guess I am mirror – the attitude given to me is reflected, and you have been nothing but friendly, engaging and thoughtful – even in disagreement.

    You cannot, in a modern society, trade 10 chickens, a goat, 2 homemade quilts and five weekends of lawnmowing for an appendectomy.

    You sure can!

    But why would you?

    It easier to trade for all of those things for money and then trade money for your operation.

    Be cautious in how you may assign economic cause/effect – and in fair warning, I adhere to Mises and the Austrian School of Economics.

    What BF misses — at least, I hope he is just missing it — is that the poor, elderly, mentally challenged and physically disabled will mostly die out under his vision.

    Not one bit.

    Throughout history, people have seen value in the living.
    This era is no different.

    The difference of our opinion – you believe you need to resort to theft to pay for it, and I do not.

    >They haven’t enough men & women, enough equipment and — most keenly — enough training and prac tice time. They are brave, dedicated and a blessing to us all. But they will tell you, their would rather their work be obsolete because of an abundance of well-trained, well-equipped and decently paid professionals.

    I disagree. The problem is competition

    Government -by the ability to subsidize its inefficiency by taxing efficiency- and drives out good.

    “Bad money drives out good money”

    If BF’s argument is that an end to taxation and abolition of government will result in a magic panacea where all (or even most) are cared for modestly but adequately…then fine.

    I do not measure “action” by its consequence — that is I do NOT chose an action because it is a panacea or it is difficult.

    I chose an action by its principle.

    When an action is evil – it is evil.
    It does not matter whether the consequence appears profitable or not.

    Theft is profitable – but do you advise it?

    Like

  37. Jim says:

    Hi there, Nick!

    You say, Jim, you have to remember that Black is a wannabe Nazi

    Have I missed something? I haven’t seen anything from him defending Nazism or Hitler. But I can’t possibly read everything and you may have noted something I didn’t. All of his posts…and mine…in the Reuben James thread are gone. Not sure what happened to them. Did he say something naughty? Is that why that thread was removed or was it a cyber glitch?

    I have to say Nick, BF has been nothing but friendly and cordial to me in disagreement — and I applaud him for that. I like him. There are a few other Anarcho-Libertarians here who must resort to insult but I don’t get that from BF. Could just be me.

    If BF, or anyone else, HAS spoken up in defense of Hitler or Nazism, then shame on them. Same goes for anyone defending Marxism or Stalin.

    My beef with BF is that the math doesn’t work. You cannot, in a modern society, trade 10 chickens, a goat, 2 homemade quilts and five weekends of lawnmowing for an appendectomy. It might have worked when a few dozen people lived in a county and there was one doctor, a circuit-riding parson, a barber-dentist and a livery stable man who doubled as undertaker. But this isn’t 1675 Colonial Williamsburg or even 1868 Dodge City, Kansas.

    What BF misses — at least, I hope he is just missing it — is that the poor, elderly, mentally challenged and physically disabled will mostly die out under his vision. There aren’t enough peach preserves, chickens and macrame rugs to make sure everyone — or even many — of these people are cared for. There isn’t enough roadside billboard space or internet bandwidth to keep every road paved and every community well served by fire and emt units. Volunteers? Go talk to your local volunteer fire chief about how that’s working. I have. They haven’t enough men & women, enough equipment and — most keenly — enough training and practice time. They are brave, dedicated and a blessing to us all. But they will tell you, their would rather their work be obsolete because of an abundance of well-trained, well-equipped and decently paid professionals.

    If BF’s argument is that an end to taxation and abolition of government will result in a magic panacea where all (or even most) are cared for modestly but adequately…then fine. He’s wrong, but fine. As he pointed out in a thread about religion, some people believe in Santa Claus. I suppose they can believe in magic libertarian fairy dust or the innate goodness and altruism of both individuals and corporations.

    If his argument is that this is how we thin the herd and remove the sickly, weak, dumb, elderly, retarded or poor (who must be indolent, else they would not be poor) from our midst…well then…he is a Social Darwinist.

    The former makes me sad for an unwillingness to embrace reality. The latter makes me sad for an obvious poverty of soul.

    I am choosing to believe the former, because I like the lad.

    Jim

    Like

  38. Jim, you have to remember that Black is a wannabe Nazi

    Like

  39. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    Sorry – but additional verbiage inside one post tends to get lost in the mass … so, just breaking things up a bit into different posts to attempt some coherency.

    Police:

    The Supreme Court has numerous times issued rulings regarding “Police Protection” in cases before it where police did not come to a citizen’s aid or protection.

    With no dissent on the bench, and in every case, the verdict has been:

    “There is no right of police protection for citizens. The job of the police is to enforce law and under the sole digression of the police themselves of what laws will be enforced and when such laws will be enforced.

    It is a complete illusion that police exist to protect YOU from violence.

    One merely needs to look at LA King riots (where the police retreated and abandoned the citizens to the killers and thieves – and until the citizens organized themselves and repealed the criminals – and protected the fireman themselves – then the police moved in) or the ones in “peace loving Vancouver Canada” riots (where the Police Chief ordered the police to NOT protect private property (but protect government property) and only intervene where loss of life was at risk, but not where injury was at risk – so where a shop owner tried to step in to save his shop, and beaten to a pulp, the cops watched….)

    Please note, the during the riots, a group of East Indian businessmen took up baseball bats, tire irons and garbage can lids and organized an ad hoc private security force to protect their businesses and property.

    A woman trying to get home from work attempt to cross the riot, and was suddenly accosted by criminals.. and the cops watched her in her complete panic… until the “East Indian Army” aggressively descended upon the criminals and beat them away…surrounded her and escorted her home.

    She had previously been a bit racist regarding all these “East Indian’s” in her neighborhood – but after that night, she holds a complete reversal of that opinion – and a completely opposite opinion of police.

    Like

  40. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    Another consideration for you to think about, regarding your comment of “…moving somewhere…”

    There are only two – and just two – ways to allocate resources …there is no third way….

    Either by:
    – peacefully, by earn or trade
    – violently, by theft or ration

    You insist on the theft and ration – take it from those that have something, and ration it out based on some administrative bureaucracy ie: government

    What do I mean by “administrative bureaucracy”?

    To legitimize the theft, government promises to use some of their stolen loot (the stuff they haven’t consume for themselves</i) for a lottery to be given to those that agree to the theft in the first place.

    That lottery is not random – because people don't like "chance" in general – they want it determined.

    So, by rationing – you can think WW2 ration cards as a direct example, and as a current analogy.

    The loot is given out in dribbles based on some administrative person subjectively claiming “this is a fair amount for anyone” … so like in WW2, they gave gas rations to people who had no cars, and not enough to farmers and their tractors – so people engaged in “illegal” (ie: black market) trade for goods they had too much of, and for things they wanted, but had too little for.

    Rationing is an incredibly inefficient and wasteful (…and dangerous around government) way of allocating resources

    This is no different today; all government allocations of services or monies is by a means of rationing – the actual means we see today may mask the “ration card”, but the fundamental is precisely the same, as is the consequence.

    Trade/Earn methodology of a market place, instead of Administrative bureaucracy, uses Price mechanisms … that is the people who desire the good the most, will pay the most for it…. the direct example is an auction: highest bid wins

    Resources are allocated based on “highest bid”, and after that person is satisfied, it goes to the “next highest bid” and so on.

    Resources are allocated to who “needs” it the most – where “need” is defined by “desire”.

    These two methods – price or ration – are the only two ways we allocate such resources, and as such exclude each other.

    Pick one
    or the other.
    but not both at the same time.

    Hope that helps a bit.

    Like

  41. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    I’ve heard it before. “I don’t have to worry about home invaders, rapists, robbers…because I’m just so tough and macho…or because I am so well armed.”

    Didn’t say that –

    I will repeat, once again:
    Do not worry about my ability to protect myself and my family – it is very satisfactory, it has been tested, and it has been extremely successful.

    I find it unnecessary to be “macho” or portray “tough” in dissuading others from victimizing me.

    I do not fear them as you appear to. They are a incredibly small minority – and are not included to prey on those prepared to resist.

    However, a fact of the human condition:

    One will suffer a risk of violence from somewhere.

    You will suffer that risk either from:
    – a decentralized, individual, disorganized, random, slight and very rare in occasion violence from a hoodlum OR,
    – a centralized, large, highly organized, constant, and massively pervasive, but very predictable violence from government.

    It is a trade-off; either the RANDOM risk from the hood across the street stealing your wallet or the CONSTANT risk of the hood in Washington stealing your wallet.

    It is the fear of the unknown which drives many people into the clutches of government violence …”better the devil we can predict then a demon we cannot…”

    Governments hate competition.

    Thus, they work to eliminate competition, especially in the arena’s of violence – they do not want any competition in violence, in case such violence is turned toward them.

    Thus, they work to suppress all violence within their command geography, and replace it solely with their own.

    ….thus my point:
    The police are not there to protect you.

    The police are there to enforce government law, which may include killing you.

    The Police is the enforcement arm of government – and only by accident does their goal of monopolizing violence (thus subduing criminals) align with your goal of security and peace.

    Couple things. One, there is always someone tougher and better armed.

    Agreed.
    Which is why you need to prepare yourself.

    “When seconds count, the police are only minutes away”

    Two, you or I might be able to handle the bad guys. What about my mother?

    Why ask me?

    She is YOUR mother, and YOUR responsibility, not mine.

    Except what we do now seems to work reasonably well.

    Subjective opinion.
    Many slaves saw their lives as “ok” too and lived in “golden cages: – but they are slaves.

    Yes, society has compensated for the perverse nature of legitimized violence.

    Society has created illusions – such as Police “protection” to quell their own reasoning and questions….

    …but when police pummel peaceful protestors, or open fire on unarmed men and women, the public is provoked …. but not for too long, for the illusion is hard to break.

    But not in a nation of 330 million.

    Of course it will!
    There is no philosophical nor technical nor fundamental reason why not.

    On every street, a toll?

    Maybe, or something else.

    The weak and old are protected only if they can afford to pay for it?

    Maybe or something else.

    The sick get medicine only if they can buy it or maybe if they can find a pharmacist willing to take a chicken, a quilt or some homemade peach pie in exchange?

    Maybe or something else.

    If you don’t like taxation, move to one of those wonderful countries you described in the prior post where you can purchase all the services (or trade for them) without having big brother come and take your loot.

    And if you love taxation, how about you move to N. Korea – 100%! Live will be very very good for you!

    The fundamental challenge you have is you distrust free men.

    But you want to be free.

    The mantra:
    “Freedom for me, but not for you”

    You believe you know how to spend your money better than I – which is why you don’t mail it to me.

    But, you think you know how to spend my money better than I do – you want me to pay for your mother.

    The problem with theft, Jim, is it is economically destructive.

    It transfers wealth from those that create it to those that merely consume it.

    If I came to you and said:
    BF: “Jim – great news! I am going to help 100 people get the best medical care in the world!

    I will give each one $100,000 for their payment – right out of my pocket – for free, and no obligation to pay it back”

    Jim, as a tear of joy rolls down his cheek: Wow! That’s great news! What a nice thing you are doing!”

    Suddenly Jim notices BF donning a mask and loading his auto-rifles, etc.

    Jim, horrified: What are you doing?

    BF: Going to rob a bank or two…

    Jim: WHAT!!??!

    BF: You didn’t think I had the money, did you?

    Jim: But but but, that’s WRONG!

    BF: But the people will be happy? Don’t you want them to be healthy?

    Jim But it is just wrong – you can’t steal it just to pay for something else!!!

    BF: Here’s the deal, Jim – your mother will be one of the one’s I help…

    WHAT DO YOU SAY?

    Like

  42. Jim says:

    Afternoon, Flag…

    I’ve heard it before. “I don’t have to worry about home invaders, rapists, robbers…because I’m just so tough and macho…or because I am so well armed.”

    Couple things. One, there is always someone tougher and better armed. Always. The chances of your stars crossing may be minimal, but that’s quite a gamble. Two, you or I might be able to handle the bad guys. What about my mother? She’ll be 86 in December. She’s on a fixed income and can’t afford a private security guard even part time…let alone 24/7. Maybe if all four of her children pooled their financial resources, we might be able to afford to pay an armed guard full time. Just on the off chance that someone might come and break in and possibly hurt or kill her.

    We’d expend all our resources doing it — no money left over for tolls and user fees (since you advocate no taxation)…no money left over for health care for ourselves and our children…and then there’s Mom’s health care. I’m not quite the “one percent” but I am doing pretty well — but this would wipe me out.

    Which is okay, Mom is worth it.

    Except what we do now seems to work reasonably well. She has good lighting and locks, which she paid for. There’s a home security system, which we bought her. And there’s 9-1-1 and the police officers (and EMTS) who Mom’s taxes — and maybe yours if you live in Mansfield, Ohio — pay for.

    Your idea won’t work. It might have worked in feudal or agrarian times for isolated and rural communities. But not in a nation of 330 million.

    On every street, a toll? The weak and old are protected only if they can afford to pay for it? The sick get medicine only if they can buy it or maybe if they can find a pharmacist willing to take a chicken, a quilt or some homemade peach pie in exchange?

    What your idea WILL do is work for the richest of the rich. If you are fabulously wealthy, I can see why you support it. If you are not, then you are the one who has been deluded — because you actually believe what your masters have told you: that one day you, too, will live in luxury, ease and comfort just like they do. All you have to do is defend their right to “keep their own money”…money they “earned”, most of the time anyway, by way of inheritance or because people like me — and my mother — and maybe you and yours — worked FOR them and made them wealthy.

    I go back to what I said at the beginning of our exchange (which has been cordial and enjoyable — I really DO appreciate that about you) —

    If you don’t like taxation, move to one of those wonderful countries you described in the prior post where you can purchase all the services (or trade for them) without having big brother come and take your loot.

    You might want to consider that. Have you?

    Like

  43. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    In Great Britain, the police function was historically performed by private watchmen (existing from 1500 on), thief-takers, and so on. The former were funded by private individuals and organizations and the latter by privately-funded rewards for catching criminals, who would then be compelled to return stolen property or pay restitution.

    In 1737, George II began paying some London and Middlesex watchmen with tax moneys, beginning the shift to government control. In 1750, Henry Fielding began organizing a force of quasi-professional constables. The Macdaniel affair added further impetus for a publicly-salaried police force that did not depend on rewards. Nonetheless, In 1828, there were privately financed police units in no fewer than 45 parishes within a 10-mile radius of London.

    Note: The Macdaniel affair was corruption due to government rewarding convictions

    Like

  44. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    So you advocate no government.

    Yep

    Do you have children or a spouse?

    Yep.

    Well, never mind them. Suppose a couple of thugs broke into your house, beat you senseless, raped you and then took some of your belongings.

    Do not worry about my ability to protect myself and my family – it is very satisfactory, it has been tested, and it has been extremely successful.

    There is no government, therefore…no police protection…no system of courts…

    Why do you believe this?

    As an international business man, I traveled to far away lands, who have had governments.

    When I landed, my local partners provided well-armed security teams, and bullet-resistant transportation for I “glowed in the dark” in that culture.

    So, let’s test your claim against reality.
    There was a government.
    There was police.
    They had courts of “law”.
    I was not safe.
    I provided (or was given) security by highly trained professionals to do the job you claim the existence of government must automatically provide.

    I would suggest this:
    Your understanding and definition of government is terribly flawed

    Like

  45. Jim says:

    Thanks, Flag. I understand now.

    So you advocate no government. Do you have children or a spouse? Well, never mind them. Suppose a couple of thugs broke into your house, beat you senseless, raped you and then took some of your belongings.

    There is no government, therefore…no police protection…no system of courts…

    How do you propose these thugs be punished for what they did to you and, of great importance, prevented from ever doing it to anyone again?

    Jim

    Like

  46. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    I defy being labelled.

    Like Black in the flag, my philosophy is defined by the absence of something, not the existence of it.

    “-archy” is rooted in Greek, meaning “right to rule”

    Thus,
    Theo-archy … right of religion to rule
    Olig -archy …right of the elite to rule
    Demo-archy …right of mob rule.
    Mono-archy …right of one to rule

    …and so on.

    “An-” means “No” or “Not”

    Thus An-archy – “no right to rule”

    No man has a right to rule over another man.

    The absence of any right to rule is the root of my philosophy.

    While the rainbow of rulers and their shades of color fight with each other for seizing such a right – they all align against those that knows none of them have such a right.

    Thus, they will preach anarchy to be “chaos” or a ‘de-evolution of society” … as if government isn’t chaos and doesn’t shatter society wholesale!

    But anarchy is civilization – that men, in voluntary association, provides the greatest prosperity and peace.

    Like

  47. Jim says:

    Flag,

    So I have not been discussing these issues with a Libertarian as much as an Anarchist?

    Labels are pretty confining, I realize. But are you an Anarchist or an Anarcho-Libertarian?

    Curious…

    Like

  48. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Total fiction. You almost had a near-valid, though odd and crabbed, view of government. Most often, paranoia is wrong, and damaging to the paranoid.

    You should study history some time, BF.

    Ed, it is your history that is faulty.

    In the 20th Century, government killing their own citizens, NOT including war between nations -death by government or democide – was the single greatest cause of death and for the first time in history, exceed the natural disaster of death by water (floods, tsunami, etc.)

    The rise of the nation state has brought mankind to the brink of self-annihilation.

    …and you think this is all good.

    It is not a matter of paranoia, but of observation and understanding.

    Government exists solely on is use of violence upon men, violent and non-violent.

    It knows nothing else, and does nothing else.

    Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. – Washington

    All government systems always end up as a great tyranny – for government must maintain itself by the use of violent power – and thirsts for more of it.

    Like

  49. Ed Darrell says:

    Government does not provide roads because they love you, Jim.

    They do not love you.
    They utterly do not trust you.
    They are utterly paranoid you are going to overthrow them.

    So, they want their hands around your throat.

    Total fiction. You almost had a near-valid, though odd and crabbed, view of government. Most often, paranoia is wrong, and damaging to the paranoid.

    You should study history some time, BF.

    Like

  50. Black Flag® says:

    Jim,

    It is also important to understand why government seizes certain goods and services, destroys competition to these services, and then monopolizes their delivery to the people.

    Control of the means of transportation is the reason they want control of the roads – initially, so to move armies around the continent, and now, to control the flow of goods – so that they, on a second’s notice, can stop the flow of goods to any particular region that may be under insurrection or rebellion.

    Government does not provide roads because they love you, Jim.

    They do not love you.
    They utterly do not trust you.
    They are utterly paranoid you are going to overthrow them.

    So, they want their hands around your throat.

    Like

  51. Black Flag® says:

    Yo Jim!

    That was a pretty lengthy post in response to me — which is a good thing.

    The paradigm of legitimized violence needs little explanation.

    It was delivered upon you by who you thought were the “authorities” in your life – your parents, family, friends, school – and you trusted them.

    Few actually test these paradigms to see if they are consistent and moral.

    Most merely accept them blindly.

    To reverse the blindness one must overcome years and generations of assumptions – that takes a lot of words.

    So to make things equitable, you suggest what? A toll?

    Well, I pay for my own hamburger that I eat, and you pay for the two you eat.

    Seems fair to me.

    Whether a toll, or a fixed fee or …free!… Why not? A lot of internet sites are “free” to the users because they sell “advertisements” or use information in a different form to earn money.

    Who knows how the road owners may do it – maybe just charging the billboard guys ….. I don’t know.

    But I don’t have to know, just I don’t know how to make money sell running shoes.

    Yet, people buy and sell running shoes without me! :)

    The Principle is the Foundation – from that foundation, what is done … or not … is just that.

    Could the poor person, driving his old beater to a minimum wage job along the route afford the toll each day? Or would the amount of the toll cut so deeply into his paycheck as to make the job self-defeating?

    Why stop there then?

    I’m a poor person, who’s job location changes by a few thousands miles every week or so.

    The cost of flights eats deeply into my income, so at times it appears my working really costs me money instead of making it.

    So, should you and Ed subsidize me?

    ….

    I think not.

    I think it’s up to me to decide on the trade-offs of my income and my expenses and it is my decision to make.

    If I decide I need to change my job, my home location, who I work for, or the amount of my fee, why should you or Ed have to pony up cash so I can subsidize this?

    In other words, why should I get the benefits of selecting easy tradeoffs, while passing all the costs to you! Nice game~!!…no wonder one everyone wants to play (but very very few win).

    he would come out ahead. I honestly don’t know.

    Neither do I, and neither does any other human on earth …. except him.

    It is HIS choice, and HIS consequences – so he is the best one to make those decisions.

    I’m not seeing how this is cost effective at all,

    You would completely be unable to see how delivering you a banana at pennies a pound is cost effective either – …. yet, there they are, on your dinner table … all the way from some foreign land.

    It is not your job to figure out how banana growers make a profit delivering you a banana – you just want to eat a banana, you have a value on that, and if the price they ask is lower than your value, you buy the banana.

    Equally, it is not your job to figure out how road builders make a profit either – they built a road, and they want cars and drivers – just like banana growers want people who eat fruit.

    They will figure out a price, and a payment model that is attractive to you – the KING of the ECONOMY… the consumer!

    You do not need to figure out how free men provide you goods and services.

    You merely need to go to the store, and look around! They don’t have much of a problem providing stuff to you!

    So, trust free men to do the same on things you are no so accustomed to being provided in that manner.

    If it is economical, it will be there for you.

    If it wasn’t, it shouldn’t never have been…period.

    Like

  52. Jim says:

    Hi Flag!

    That was a pretty lengthy post in response to me — which is a good thing. Except I can be kind of dense so please be patient. I am trying to understand. Let’s see if I “hear” you correctly.

    You’re right that not everyone in Plainfield or DeKalb use the highway linking the two cities. (It’s just an example from my life; I suppose we could name any two communities.)

    I can completely understand why it would annoy John Smith, who doesn’t use the road, to have to pay taxes to maintain it. But Susie Jones, who commutes between the two cities daily, is paying the same amount of tax. And yes, she’s getting quite a deal.

    So to make things equitable, you suggest what? A toll? I might actually be open to that. It makes sense to charge people for what they use. So Mr. Smith needn’t pay the toll unless he uses the highway. Ms. Jones will pay, since that’s her route to work and back.

    That’s not what I originally envisioned when you proposed a system of voluntary trade instead of taxation. It’s more of a user fee. But nomenclature aside, I might go for it. It would have to be proven, though, that the toll would actually be sufficient to keep the highway in relatively decent shape. What would it cost, I wonder, to do that? (Never mind building an entirely new road — that’s a discussion for later.)

    Could the poor person, driving his old beater to a minimum wage job along the route afford the toll each day? Or would the amount of the toll cut so deeply into his paycheck as to make the job self-defeating? Maybe not! If we have eliminated taxation to implement this system you propose, perhaps he would come out ahead. I honestly don’t know. Could the small business owner afford to send her truck both ways each day to make deliveries or pickups? Maybe the toll would be a bargain compared to what she was paying in taxes.

    Are toll highways in the US self sufficient? In Indiana, the Governor sold the state’s lone toll road to a company in Spain. Rates have gone up significantly. The road is much more poorly maintained than it was when we were taxed (I used to live there) for it…and at least two State Police posts have been closed along the toll road, making it less safe. But maybe this is just part of the pain in moving from a tax-based society to one based on voluntary trade or user fees. Perhaps it will all even out.

    But beyond the matter of how much the toll shall cost, we have to come round to face the matter of practicality. It isn’t just about one highway in Illinois and a turnpike in Indiana. We’ve thousands of streets, roads, boulevards and highways. Do we charge a toll on ALL of them? To what extent would that slow commerce? That delivery truck driver won’t mind slowing down long enough for his toll to be taken (it’s all cameras and computers now) on an interstate highway…but what about in the city where he makes multiples stops and turns? Does he pay another toll to use East 135th Street? And another when he turns onto Old Lincoln Highway?

    I’m not seeing how this is cost effective at all, except possibly for the person who never leaves his home. And this is just the matter of roads. We’ve not even got round to airports, canals, dams, bridges and railroads.

    Jim

    Like

  53. Black Flag® says:

    Greeting Jim,

    Plainfield and DeKalb are linked by a highway. It’s safe, but like any road, without continual maintenance, it will degrade and become unsafe. Danger to life and limb aside, there will be the cost to motorists in terms of wear and tear on their vehicle. So we agree that having a relatively smooth, safe highway is a good thing.

    Actually, that is not quite our processes as humans.

    Humans desire things that solve human problems (the term “problem” is not merely to describe, say, pollution – but other wants and needs, like the problem of empty stomach, or the problem of loneliness or problem of thirst, or the problem of boredom, etc. It is a “wanting” of something that is currently “lacking”.)

    We subjectively value things – this is very individual.

    Then we measure whether the solution to our problem provides a greater value then what we must give up to accept the solution.

    It is important to understand that this is not merely a “money” transaction – but all action, by that act, ends the opportunity to do something else – if you go to “this thing now”, you cannot do “that thing now” – we call these “trade offs”

    IF you buy a burger with that dollar, you can’t buy a pint of ale with that same dollar – you can have the burger or a pint – but not both – for that expenditure.

    So you have to choose – and that choice is based on subjective values that you provide to your own needs and wants – that is, you’d rather have a burger than a pint right now.

    So when it comes to the road, yes, you value convenience, safety, repair, etc – but only by the value you happen to place on these things compare to other things you also value

    So, if the cost of the road is say, $25,000 a year — you may reconsider your choices on how to spend that $25,000 – say, instead buy a new car every year, or merely avoid the whole problem and move closer to your job, etc.

    Everything has a cost, and everything has a value – when the cost of something is LESS than what you value it, you will buy it.

    So when you look at the road, you are measuring your value vs the cost, while keeping in mind, that which you spend here will not be able to be spent somewhere else.

    So what you may think is a “good thing” – that is, you believe you are getting your money’s worth – I may not see it that way.

    Yes, a nice road is a good thing – but maybe I value something more than that and would not spend my money on a road at the loss of spending my money on something else.

    There is no such thing as “inherent” value

    All value comes from the subject consideration of the individual.

    Presently, we tax our citizenry to make that happen.

    So, let’s also be clear.

    You are still paying for the road – there is no such thing as a free lunch.

    What taxation does is apply a disproportional amount of the cost of such things upon the people who do not use the full good – I do not use your road, but pay the same “full pull” for it as you.

    But you use the road a lot! So, you are getting a bargain – I am paying for your overuse – subsidizing you.

    If everyone used the same good paid by taxes the same amount, the taxes withdrawn from the people would be the same for everyone … the road needs to be paid for.

    If this was the case, there would be no point in using the tax system to pay for it -simply send the same bill out to everyone.

    But tax system, by its existence, is the means to place the burden of cost of that good upon people who do not use it to their “full share”.

    Does that sound right to you?
    Shouldn’t people pay for what they consume?

    Since you reckon taxation forcible theft, you would propose that the cities of Plainfield and DeKalb…recognizing the mutual benefit of this highway…offer to pay Acme Paving & Construction a certain amount of money to do the job?

    Who owns the road?

    He who owns the the good determines the price.

    He who wants the good measures the value.

    When the value exceeds the price, a sale is made – otherwise, no sale.

    Like

  54. Jim says:

    Hi Flag!

    Your proposal is an interesting one. Instead of taxation, voluntary trade. Before moving too much further, I want to see if I understand you accurately.

    Plainfield and DeKalb are linked by a highway. It’s safe, but like any road, without continual maintenance, it will degrade and become unsafe. Danger to life and limb aside, there will be the cost to motorists in terms of wear and tear on their vehicle. So we agree that having a relatively smooth, safe highway is a good thing. Presently, we tax our citizenry to make that happen. Since you reckon taxation forcible theft, you would propose that the cities of Plainfield and DeKalb…recognizing the mutual benefit of this highway…offer to pay Acme Paving & Construction a certain amount of money to do the job?

    Or — are you suggesting that individuals and businesses in each of these cities pool their financial resources and do so? (This would presumably get government — albeit municipal — out of the equation entirely.)

    Is that the equation or am I misunderstanding?

    Cheers!

    Jim

    Like

  55. Black Flag® says:

    Jim

    Good afternoon, Flag! I hope your work week is off to a good start.

    It’s Monday, so “good” is very subjective……

    I’ve heard a number of people make this same statement of yours: that all taxation — sales, income, property, whatever — should be ended.

    Yes, its core principle is theft.

    Theft is immoral and damages social cohesion, and as such, should be sternly resisted by all free men.

    I am hoping you will be the first to adequately explain how we will function as a society without taxation.

    The same way society functions without theft.

    We use voluntary trade.

    I do like well-maintained roads, safe and clean public parks and libraries, airports and I am particularly pleased to have both indoor plumbing and a sewage treatment facility.

    I like safe airplanes, car, food, soda pop, gas stations, houses, forks and spoons, pots and kettles, coffee, fruit, eggs and bacon,…..

    Consider people sell bottled water because the vaunted “public water system” cannot supply the quality the people seem to want.

    If there is a valuable economic good, people will provide it.

    I think roads and parks and libraries are valuable economic good for many people.

    There are people who want to shovel your shit out of a cesspool for money.

    I am absolutely positive there are people would be happy to pave a road for you too, clean a park, and keep your water clean.

    The first police forces were private, , who guarded rich and poor people alike – because social order is desired, and people will pay for it – even if other benefit from it.

    The wall that I build to protect me costs almost zero cost to protect you.

    This is why it is perverse that government “protection” services become more costly over time – there is essentially zero incremental costs for additional people after the first cost.

    Volunteer firemen are still the majority.

    Militia of volunteers is more than enough for a defense.

    The first regiments were made up of volunteers who either bought their own arms or were supplied by the purchases of wealthy patrons who also supplied the funds to train their regiments.

    I quote Marx in understanding this:

    “I have built the kitchen, what recipes and meals are cooked there I do not need to know”

    In other words, Jim, the principled framework is established; “Thou shalt not steal, not even by popular vote”

    Now, genius of free men will figure out how to solve human problems, like they figure out how to solve human problems right now, without having to resort to clubbing their fellow man over their heads to do it….

    … I do not need to do the work for free men – but merely support the principle of freedom and non-violence.

    Further,what is your answer how much “economic benefit” is worthy to murder someone?

    What is your answer to how much economic benefit is worthy to steal from someone?

    We do not measure “right and wrong” or “good and evil” by the economic outcome such action may deliver.

    We measure right/wrong, good/evil by the action undertaken to accomplish the benefit.

    The means justifies the end

    So if the means is evil – does it matter how “good” the outcome, when the outcome is so violently tainted by evil?

    So we cannot approach this question by asking “How much economic growth do we lose if we stop stealing from each other”

    We approach the question by asking “How do we solve human problems without resorting to violence on non-violent men?”

    Like

  56. Jim says:

    Good afternoon, Flag! I hope your work week is off to a good start.

    I’ve heard a number of people make this same statement of yours: that all taxation — sales, income, property, whatever — should be ended.

    You’re considerably brighter than most of them, so I am hoping you will be the first to adequately explain how we will function as a society without taxation. I’d like to know, because my taxes are quite high.

    I do like well-maintained roads, safe and clean public parks and libraries, airports and I am particularly pleased to have both indoor plumbing and a sewage treatment facility.

    Have you any thoughts about how we can fund all of these services, plus police, fire, EMT and even a dramatically scaled-back military force and diplomatic corps?

    Thanks, bud!

    Jim

    Like

  57. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    All the dust you want to throw in the air is meaningless distraction from the point of the post.

    Why you waste so much time defending the undefendable and obscure the obvious, I do not know.

    “PAC” is a political action committee, which, by law, may not be operated by a corporation.

    A PAC is a way FOR a corporation to give money, which is why the list I provided uses corporate names.

    Where in that vacant mind of yours do you believe the list “got” the company names???

    BF, I’m no whiz at campaign finance,

    Frankly, I couldn’t give a damn about it myself.

    I think it is funny to give money to people whose job is to imprison and enslave you.

    Stick to the facts. It will improve your accuracy, and eventually, you’ll begin to see the light.

    You should stick to arguing on what is important, not the stupid fluff you think is important.

    Like

  58. Ed Darrell says:

    $2.89 million flowed to campaigns from BP-related PACs and about $638,000 came from individuals.

    “PAC” is a political action committee, which, by law, may not be operated by a corporation.

    It’s illegal for corporations to give money to a candidate. If you wish to say a PAC run by employees of a corporation gave money, say so. It’s illegal for a corporation to give money to PAC, even one run by its own employees. It’s illegal to pay an employee money so the employee can donate to a designated candidate. PAC contributions are voluntary (mostly).

    PAC moneys are limited, still, by the law. Citizens United did not change that law much, either.

    BF, I’m no whiz at campaign finance, but I’ve been involved with it rather deeply off and on since 1974. I knew Jim Buckley, and I worked for Frank Valeo in that campaign year, in the Senate’s campaign reporting office. For over a decade I had to track the laws carefully because I was on the front lines. You could take my word, and were you wise, you would.

    Stick to the facts. It will improve your accuracy, and eventually, you’ll begin to see the light.

    Like

  59. Black Flag® says:

    What really is staggering is that this election, the winner will probably spend $1 billion to get elected…..

    Like

  60. Black Flag® says:

    BP and its employees have given more than $3.5 million to federal candidates over the past 20 years, with the largest chunk of their money going to Obama, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. Donations come from a mix of employees and the company’s political action committees — $2.89 million flowed to campaigns from BP-related PACs and about $638,000 came from individuals.

    Top Contributions per Candidate.

    To Obama, 2008

    University of California $1,648,685
    Goldman Sachs $1,013,091
    Harvard University $878,164
    Microsoft Corp $852,167
    Google Inc $814,540
    JPMorgan Chase & Co $808,799
    Citigroup Inc $736,771
    Time Warner $624,618
    Sidley Austin LLP $600,298
    Stanford University $595,716
    National Amusements Inc $563,798
    WilmerHale LLP $550,668
    Columbia University $547,852
    Skadden, Arps et al $543,539
    UBS AG $532,674
    IBM Corp $532,372
    General Electric $529,855
    US Government $513,308
    Morgan Stanley $512,232
    Latham & Watkins $503,295

    To McCain, 2008
    Merrill Lynch $375,895
    JPMorgan Chase & Co $343,505
    Citigroup Inc $338,202
    Morgan Stanley $271,902
    Goldman Sachs $240,295
    US Government $202,929
    AT&T Inc $201,938
    Wachovia Corp $199,663
    UBS AG $187,493
    Credit Suisse Group $184,153
    PricewaterhouseCoopers $169,400
    US Army $169,020
    Bank of America $167,826
    Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher $160,346
    Blank Rome LLP $155,226
    Greenberg Traurig LLP $147,437
    US Dept of Defense $146,356
    FedEx Corp $131,974
    Lehman Brothers $126,557
    Ernst & Young $114,506

    Now, go sit down, Ed, and have a shot of whiskey…..

    Like

  61. Black Flag® says:

    Ed

    Google doesn’t substitute for a brain and ethics. I find it much more useful to tell the truth first.

    You have neither ethics or a brain, so I understand why Google is of little use for you.

    Like

  62. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    You create such BS by making such big deals over the most hair-splitting stupidity.

    The poster is correct.

    Whether a corporation fills his pocket so he can spend it, or it spends it on his behalf, the effect is the same.

    Like

  63. Ed Darrell says:

    Google doesn’t substitute for a brain and ethics. I find it much more useful to tell the truth first.

    What makes you think I don’t use Google, and a dozen other search engines? You’re surprised I put the name to the case you failed to cite? You’re not very good at puzzles, I take it.

    Like

  64. Ed Darrell says:

    It’s quite obvious you make this stuff up on the fly, BF. That’s part of why you think everyone else a moron — you appear to actually believe the crap you tell. You fool yourself.

    A legend in your own mind, to coin a phrase.

    Like

  65. Ed Darrell says:

    Yes, but the previous poster is in error to say Obama is the chief recipient of corporate funding.

    First, corporations still may not contribute to a candidate. That’s illegal, still. The Court did not strike down that part of the law (it was not at issue).

    Second, what corporations may do is run ads that name a candidate. Still, so far, most ads corporations have run do not name a candidate, but stick to an issue advocacy without naming a candidate.

    Third, there is no method known to apportion ads to one candidate or another. So, we can’t know how much was spent for any presidential candidate.

    Fourth, this decision came down in 2010. Obama wasn’t running then.

    So, BF, you’re just throwing BS, again on a topic on which you appear to know very little, but on which you wish to distort much.

    Nothing you’ve posted rebuts in any way the Supreme Court’s decision that leaves intact the ban on corporations donating to candidates.

    Like

  66. Black Flag® says:

    Corporate and labor PACs raise voluntary contributions from a restricted class of individuals. In the case of unions, this consists of union members and their families. For corporations, the restricted class consists of managerial employees and stockholders and their families. These funds may be used to support federal candidates and political committees, either through independent expenditures or through contributions to candidates. A PAC is limited to a maximum contribution of $5,000 to a candidate committee per election.

    Because of the Supreme Court’s decision in the case Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, corporations and labor unions can now use the funds from their general treasuries to run advertisements for candidates in national elections. The Supreme Court decided that any laws prohibiting corporations and labor unions from using these funds were prohibiting first amendment rights. [11]

    Like

  67. Black Flag® says:

    I’m mean, Ed, do you really think this stuff is just made up on the fly?>>

    Why are you such a moron?

    Like

  68. Black Flag® says:

    Christ, Ed, use google.

    Like

  69. Ed Darrell says:

    Under the January 2010 ruling, corporations and unions are no longer barred from promoting the election of one candidate over another candidate.[23]

    Typical — you failed to name your source.

    Plus, your one-sentence cut doesn’t rebut what I said, nor does it accurately portray the Citizens United case.

    Check again. Citizens United is a horrible decision, but it does not overturn all the campaign rules. It said a company can sponsor ads, but it does not change the law that companies may not contribute directly to a candidate, nor to the parties — so the earlier claim that Obama was the largest recipient of corporate funding is false. Not only is it illegal, still, there is no way to account for the spending companies do outside of campaigns.

    Here’s the pretty good Wikipedia description of the case:

    Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 08-205 (2010), was a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court holding that the First Amendment prohibits government from censoring political broadcasts in candidate elections when those broadcasts are funded by corporations or unions. The 5–4 decision originated in a dispute over whether the non-profit corporation Citizens United could air a film critical of Hillary Clinton, and whether the group could advertise the film in broadcast ads featuring Clinton’s image, in apparent violation of the 2002 Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, commonly known as the McCain–Feingold Act in reference to its primary Senate sponsors.[2]

    The decision reached the Supreme Court on appeal from a January 2008 decision by the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. The lower court decision had upheld provisions of the 2002 act, which prevented the film Hillary: The Movie from being shown on television within 30 days of 2008 Democratic primaries.[1][3]

    The Supreme Court reversed the lower court, striking down those provisions of the McCain–Feingold Act that prohibited all corporations, both for-profit and not-for-profit, and unions from broadcasting “electioneering communications.”[2] An “electioneering communication” was defined in McCain–Feingold as a broadcast, cable, or satellite communication that mentioned a candidate within 60 days of a general election or thirty days of a primary. The decision overruled Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce (1990) and partially overruled McConnell v. Federal Election Commission (2003).[4] McCain–Feingold had previously been weakened, without overruling McConnell, in Federal Election Commission v. Wisconsin Right to Life, Inc. (2007). The Court did uphold requirements for disclaimer and disclosure by sponsors of advertisements. The case did not involve the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties, which remain illegal in races for federal office.[5]

    See SCOTUS Blog description here.

    Holding: Political spending is a form of protected speech under the First Amendment, and the government may not keep corporations or unions from spending money to support or denounce individual candidates in elections. While corporations or unions may not give money directly to campaigns, they may seek to persuade the voting public through other means, including ads, especially where these ads were not broadcast.

    See New York Times story here.

    Like

  70. Black Flag® says:

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/1259.html

    They argue that social engineering should be removed from tax policy – but that will never happen as economic motives are the primary influence to social manipulation – that is, reward desired behavior and punish undesired behavior.

    In the realm of politics, where rational, reasoned thinking is a distance 10th place, such manipulation occurs on immediate political pragmatism – or “expediency” with the consequential disasters delivered into the future.

    Like

  71. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,


    Money provided by taxation has been used by states and their functional equivalents throughout history to carry out many functions. Some of these include expenditures on war, the enforcement of law and public order, protection of property, economic infrastructure (roads, legal tender, enforcement of contracts, etc.), public works, social engineering, and the operation of government itself.

    Like

  72. Black Flag® says:

    Under the January 2010 ruling, corporations and unions are no longer barred from promoting the election of one candidate over another candidate.[23]

    Like

  73. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    It’s illegal for presidential campaigns to take money from corporations. Same with national political committees.

    This is false.

    There are limits to the size of the contributions, but not a ban.

    Like

  74. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Sure. Excise taxes on alcohol.

    Exactly my point.

    What right do you have to punish drinkers? (none)

    For reasons of its own, government does punish drinkers, but rewards non-workers.

    Seriously, BF, you’re way out of your depth on this claim.

    As with many things, Ed, your understanding in this topic is superfical

    Like

  75. Ed Darrell says:

    Taxation is NOT a means to raise money for a government. Government has alternative (and arguably “better”) ways to do this.

    Sure. Excise taxes on alcohol.

    Or, perhaps you favor commissioning privateers to get gold from ships at sea? Seriously, BF, you’re way out of your depth on this claim.

    Like

  76. Ed Darrell says:

    It’s illegal for presidential campaigns to take money from corporations. Same with national political committees.

    Perhaps you misstated, averageamericanblogger?

    Like

  77. Black Flag® says:

    Ed,

    Flat, “fair”, or any other adjective, tax is all theft.

    There is no such thing as a fair tax, or a “fair” way to appropriate tax.

    All taxes takes from one who has earned and given to one who has not.

    All taxes are economically destructive.

    Taxation is NOT a means to raise money for a government. Government has alternative (and arguably “better”) ways to do this.

    Taxation exist for a means to manipulate the citizens via economic means.

    Taxes creates tax credits and tax benefits. Stick and carrot.
    No taxes, no credits.
    Flat taxes, no credits.
    Fair taxes, no credits.

    That what the government wishes to demotivate, they tax.
    That what the government wishes to promote, they tax credit.

    For 100 years, there has been pressure to create “fair/flat/simple” tax code, by far more dedicated men then us.

    100% have failed. The tax code continues to become ever more complex.

    This is purposeful.

    To tax you, but not your neighbor, for essentially the same things – requires incredibly complex codes, when I want to benefit your neighbor for a minor behavior and/or punish you for a minor different one.

    Anyone planning a tax code change is futile

    The only way to end tax credits et al is to eliminate all taxation.

    Thus, the irony.

    The Rep’s will never, ever, ever allow the end of tax credits.

    The Dem’s will never, ever, ever allow the end of tax punishments.

    No matter who calls for a change to tax code is a LIAR or utterly IGNORANT.

    Until taxation is eliminated, all the perversions of taxation will live healthy.

    Like

  78. Which President got more money from corporations than any other in history? Barack Obama.
    Which party gets more donations from corporations? Democrats.

    Like

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