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stoneunhinged
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I just looked it up. It's "renunciation". And the fee is only $450.

So much for "facts" thrown around the Internet. Smile
ClintonMagus
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I still like "renouncels"...
Things are more like they are today than they've ever been before...
stoneunhinged
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And I still like the $5,000 fee.

After I told the story, I was thinking to myself, "Maybe I can still apply for German citizenship without renounciating my American citizenship. I'll argue that the $5,000 is an unreasonable and unreachable financial burden."
Woland
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Thanks, Stone. Of course the Founders would have thought the idea of using governmental power to transfer money from people who produced it to people who didn't produce it pure evil.

And yhu're right about the tax bite, Stone. In 1938, Federal, State, and Local government combined consumed 15% of GDP. It's now nearly 40%. When you add up the people who are either employed by government or receiving government aid, there are only 1.25 workers in the private sector for each one of them. This is not sustainable.
rockwall
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Quote:
On 2012-07-13 11:01, stoneunhinged wrote:
I just looked it up. It's "renunciation". And the fee is only $450.

So much for "facts" thrown around the Internet. Smile


And did you notice how quickly we were willing to accept that little 'fact'?
rockwall
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At what point would you feel that the #1 function of the modern state became the re-distribution of wealth? At least here in the USA. I assume it would be different for different countries.
mastermindreader
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Assumes facts not in evidence - i.e. begs the question. Standard fallacious argument.
Woland
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Almost the only country in the world that claims the right to tax its expatriate citizens on income earned abroad is the United States. I was once told the only other was the Philippines, and that was because they essentially copied the entire US tax code.
mastermindreader
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Quote:
On 2012-07-13 19:26, rockwall wrote:
At what point would you feel that the #1 function of the modern state became the re-distribution of wealth? At least here in the USA. I assume it would be different for different countries.


To elaborate on my previous brief answer:

If the country did, in fact, commit to "redistributing the wealth" (to the poor) at some point in time, we would expect to see tax rates for the wealty and middle class to go UP after that point in order to facilitate the redistribution.

The fact is, however, that middle class and corporate tax rates are now LOWER than they were during previous administrations.

Thus, your entire premise fails. The only "redistribution" of wealth that has occurred has been upward- i.e. the wealthy have become much wealthier, the middle class has remained static (because wages haven't kept up with inflation) and the poor have become poorer. Today, income disparity between the rich and the middle class and poor is greater than it has ever been before.

You are simply going along with the right wing meme that paints efforts to stem that increasing disparity as "redistribution of the wealth." In fact those efforts are simply attempts to restore an equitable balance.
rockwall
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Actually, it wasn't my premise. It was Stoney's. I was just asking a followup question to his statement. I found his assertion interesting and worthy of thought. I'm not sure I agree with it completly but it seems to be more compelling than your attempt to dispute it.

I see a number of flaws in your argument. Re-distribution doesn't imply 'equal' re-distribution. If someone takes money from me and gives it to you, they are re-distributing the money despite the fact that I may make more than you and continue to make more than you. Most people living on the welfare state will never see their economic situation improve terribly much but it will still be very hard to change their dependence. Hence the term, 'keeping them on the plantation.'
mastermindreader
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Like I expected you to agree with me? LOL!

"Keeping them on the plantation." Didn't Allen West popularize that phrase with the right?
LobowolfXXX
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Quote:
On 2012-07-13 22:07, mastermindreader wrote:
Didn't Allen West popularize that phrase with the right?


Loved him in Batman.
"Torture doesn't work" lol
Guess they forgot to tell Bill Buckley.

"...as we reason and love, we are able to hope. And hope enables us to resist those things that would enslave us."
Dannydoyle
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Talking campy Batman would be far more interesting than this thread that's for sure.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
rockwall
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Quote:
On 2012-07-13 22:07, mastermindreader wrote:
Like I expected you to agree with me? LOL!

"Keeping them on the plantation." Didn't Allen West popularize that phrase with the right?


Actually, I think it was Dr. Thomas Sowell years ago. But nice try.
mastermindreader
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And West used it -for about the tenth time - just a week or so ago. But I don't dispute that he got the idea from someone else since he really isn't capable of original thought.

Quote:
If West had simply said that sometimes liberals unfairly attack black conservatives by questioning their racial authenticity, suggesting that there’s some sort of “betrayal” involved with being black and conservative, he would have had a defensible argument. Instead he flatters himself and disparages the majority of blacks who vote Democratic by suggesting that they’re somehow slaves who haven’t escaped the liberal/Dem “plantation.” GOP Presidential candidate Herman Cain recently said something similar, concluding that liberals don’t like him “because I won’t stay on the Democrat plantation like I’m supposed to.”

What makes West’s response particularly odd in this instance is that Wasserman-Schultz criticized West for wanting to cut Medicare. It was West who attacked Wassserman-Schultz on the basis of idetity politics, saying she is “not a lady,” as though her gender were even relevant to the issue.

The “plantation” canard is’t particularly new, but it’s worth unpacking in detail, because it points to the real role black conservatives play in the Republican Party. It’s not just that they have conservative views. Black Republicans often play a very specific role in defending the party’s record on race, and in putting Democrats on the defensive by accusing them of racism in expecting blacks to remain with the Democratic Party. In the process, some, like Cain and West, flatter conservatives by implying that black people vote for Democrats in such huge numbers not because of the GOP’s record on race, but because blacks have been tricked by Dems into not thinking for themselves. The role black Republicans play has nothing to do with winning over black voters Rather, it’s all about reassuring white Republicans that there’s nothing wrong with the party’s approach to racial issues.


http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum......log.html

Nice attempt to divert attention away from West's hate filled rants, though.
stoneunhinged
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By "redistribution of wealth" I don't mean taxing the rich to give to the poor; I mean that the primary function of government is taxing and spending, and that is actually a redistribution of wealth. That this is the federal government's primary function is obivous to anyone who spent any time working for the federal government--which I did, if only as an Intern.

Take something like the Department of Education. What does it do? It implements programs and initiatives, which essentially are money grants with some kind of concept attached. Now, one might argue that the "concept" is the point, and it may very well be the "point". But the bureaucracy is geared up to process the funds. That's what the secretaries and the civil servants (who outnumber political appointees by far) actually do.

How long has this been the case? Ever since the federal government became the primary sovereign in the United States. So I'd say it's been the case since the Civil War. Some bugs had to be worked out during the FDR years. But it was over at least by then.

Oh, and Bob: you and I probably have closer political views than any other two people on this forum. So if you think I'm just spouting off the views of some right wing commentator (forgetting that I have a PhD in political philosophy, and probably am capable of manufacturing my own political views without help) you couldn't be more wrong. Laugably wrong, in fact.

The point I am making is precisely this: all modern states--including the USA--have bureaucracies in place to tax the citizens and spend that money on public services. So the idea that Obama is somehow turning American into a "socialist" state is absurd. Obama is no more a "socialist" than Ronald Reagan was--or, as I said, LBJ or FDR. The US has had expensive federal programs to give aid and assistance to its citizens for at least a century. A federalized health care system is only a new step in the same direction, and nothing more. Whether it is wise, practically speaking, I do not know; but it certainly is legitimate, for it in no way violates the principle of government by consent.
stoneunhinged
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Oh oh oh oh!

I just saw that we have a thread on the Space Program (which I love!). Now, that may be one of the most massive "redistribution of wealth" activities ever taken up by the federal government...yet conservatives also love it. Go figure.
stoneunhinged
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It also occurs to me that I might make myself clearer in two ways:

1. By "function" I mean "activity". What governments actually do is tax and spend. They do so on the basis of policies. But the day-to-day activity is 99% about the federal budget.

2. The amount of taxes coming from our paycheck was to make the simple point that governments are dealing with HUGE amounts of money. I get to decide how to spend 2/3's of my paycheck. The government decides not only how to spend the other third of my paycheck, but the other third of the paychecks of everyone in Germany who get paychecks. So the main activity of the German government is deciding how to spend that money. That is, by all logic inherent in the English words, "redistribution of wealth".
stoneunhinged
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How many posts can I make in a row before the Café bans me, BTW?
mastermindreader
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Four.

So I just threw this one in so you don't cross the line.
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