Still Crazy After All Of These Years

Red State has the economic solution:

But tax cuts actually are the answer. The economic weakness is a forgone conclusion, because it results from de-leveraging. You can’t put that genie back in the bottle.

The most radical, and effective, thing we could do for the economy right now is this: Stop collecting all forms of Federal business, income and payroll tax. EVERY PENNY OF IT. RIGHT NOW.

Gasp! Yes, I said it, and I meant it. Go on an absolute, 100% Federal tax holiday. That’s a real shot in the arm that would suddenly inflate the economy by a solid $1.5 trillion or more per year.

What can I possibly add to this?






126 replies
  1. 1
    Will says:

    Why do I get the feeling he doesn’t know what he is talking about?

  2. 2
    dmsilev says:

    I only see one possible disadvantage to this genius plan: If we implement it, what issue could the Republicans run on next year given that more tax cuts are an impossibility?

    -dms

  3. 3
    ppcli says:

    Wow. Every time I make a joke about some view that I believe even a rightwing loon couldn’t possibly hold, reality proves me wrong. How much longer before someone on Red State proposes "profit subsidies" – everyone making less than $40,000 a year should be taxed at a rate of %50, with the proceeds distributed among those making over $200,000 per year. (I can almost write the "argument" myself: "How much longer can this country survive if it continues to punish success and reward failure….")

  4. 4
    chopper says:

    yeah, and we’ll pay for 2 ongoing wars with what, a bakesale?

  5. 5
    blackfrancis789 says:

    @chopper:

    no, the Cheney dunk tank!

    http://www.theonion.com/conten.....raises_800

  6. 6
    Tattoosydney says:

    @chopper:

    yeah, and we’ll pay for 2 ongoing wars with what…

    The thanks of a grateful Iraqi people, of course. Duh.

  7. 7
    Ellid says:

    *mock claps* Great. Just great. Let’s go back to the days of Hadacol, Peruna, chalk in the skim milk, exploding sausages, dame schools supported by the local church, and the children of the filthy and undeserving poor dying of malnutrition and preventable disease.

  8. 8
    Conservatively Liberal says:

    If you are losing badly the worst thing you can do is go all in on one last gasp, one final spin of the wheel. It is a sign of desperation, of gambling it all on one last throw of the dice in a hope for the big win.

    These people are not just crazy, they are dangerous. Their economic models and theories have all proven worthless, as bankrupt as the system they ravaged in the name of corporate profits and pay, and now they are stumbing around, zombie-like, moaning taaaxxxxx cutttsssss… taaaxxxxx cutttsssss…

    I was joking with our daughter about how stupid these wingnuts are. She made the usual observation that it seems like everything they do is exactly the opposite of whatever the Democrats do. If the Democrats are for it then they are against it. Musing, I wondered what would happen if the Democrats decided to sponsor a bill that outlaws the specific act of putting a bullet in your head. Do you think that the wingnuts would start arguing that everyone has the right to put a bullet in their head if they want to?

    I would pay anything to see their protests. I could imagine the casualties martyrs lying everywhere, dying for their cause. I would hope that it would be on pay-per-view.

  9. 9
    4tehlulz says:

    Yeah! And people will totally buy bonds to float us through until then! If not, we’ll bomb them with our military, who will be willing to work for IOUs since we can’t pay them anymore, cuz they are patriots and are so supermanly they don’t need food or water!

    Hey, where are you going?

  10. 10
    estamm says:

    Tax cuts don’t really help much IF YOU DON’T HAVE A JOB.

  11. 11
    demkat620 says:

    Spoof Red State? That would be unpossible!

  12. 12
    JL says:

    Shorter Red State–I might not be an economist but I slept in a Holiday Inn Express!

  13. 13
    gnomedad says:

    Reminds me of the Far Side cartoon "what we say to dogs … what they hear."
    What Republicans hear: "blah, blah, blah, tax cuts, blah blah blah."

  14. 14
    Dave says:

    Business, income and payroll tax accounted for 95% of federal revenues in 2007. The total tax revenue collected in 2007 was $2.5 trillion dollars.
     
    So what Genius Boy over at RS is proposing is that the federal government perform all its duties on a budget of $125B (unless my eyes have gone bad and I am reading the calculator wrong).
     
    I would love to hear how they think that will work.

  15. 15
    Krista says:

    That’s a real shot in the arm that would suddenly inflate the economy by a solid $1.5 trillion or more per year.

    I’d say they’ve been shooting up, from the sounds of things…

  16. 16
    Dave says:

    Oh, here’s Erick the Red’s grand solution to the resulting lack of funds:

    Are you worried about the resulting fiscal deficits? Don’t be. There is a huge amount of demand for debt from global investors, and the credit crunch has blown a huge hole in private debt formation. That leaves a lot of room for the government to borrow more.

    Hasn’t the the big argument by Republicans against the stimulus been that it will increase debt and the deficit?
     
    Do these idiots even read what they write anymore?

  17. 17
    Krista says:

    That’s a real shot in the arm that would suddenly inflate the economy by a solid $1.5 trillion or more per year. lead to massive unemployment as there would be no way of paying the people who work in the military or the civil service, both of which are major employers in the U.S.

    Twits.

  18. 18
    headpan says:

    How much longer before someone on Red State proposes "profit subsidies" – everyone making less than $40,000 a year should be taxed at a rate of %50, with the proceeds distributed among those making over $200,000 per year.

    My friend, you have it! The republican wet dream of yore which has never died, just simmering beneath the surface of FDR’s efforts to relieve the suffering of ordinary people, lo these many years. Glenn Beck publicly boasted he wanted to literally slap his daddy across the face for speaking well of FDR. Of course, before that meddling asshole came along, back in the robber baron days, they just used to beat their mistresses instead of spooge all over the sheets. Other than that, not much has changed. Excepting double wetsuits, underage pages, bathroom sex, diapers . . .

  19. 19
    Krista says:

    @Dave: I really think Erick is certifiable. Does anybody know his next of kin?

  20. 20
    Davis X. Machina says:

    …and the children of the filthy and undeserving poor dying of malnutrition and preventable disease.

    That’s ‘the children of the filthy and undeserving poor dying of malnutrition and preventable communicable disease’.

    Nature can’t read a Form 1040.

  21. 21
    MattF says:

    The high concept is that shutting down the Federal Government won’t really harm anyone– it’s all bureaucrats shuffling memos and jackbooted ATF thugs.

  22. 22
    Zzyzx says:

    Look Red State, the reason why the economy sucks right now is because demand is low. Tax cuts work to inspire people to create more. When no one is buying, that’s not the solution…

  23. 23
    camchuck says:

    A couple gems from today’sKarl Rove WSJ column:

    Over the past month, House Republicans have used the stimulus bill to redefine their party, present ideas on how to revive the economy…

    House Republicans had the wisdom to continue to talk to the Obama White House. This made them look gracious, even as the president edged toward a "my way or the highway" attitude.

    As they say, the stoopid really burns.

  24. 24
    matt says:

    Can someone explain why focusing on taxes is a ridiculous idea to someone (me) who doesn’t know squat about economics?

    In my personal life, most of the people I know (and have always known) are below middle class, but sort of just above working class, so I guess that’s lower middle class? Anyway, we’re all struggling, and if the gov. did this, that, and the other thing with our tax dollars to help out (health care, ect., ) that’s awesome! But just letting us keep more of our money in the first place would mean we wouldn’t need as much help to begin with.

    Now I know there are probably some right wing talking points thrown in there, but I swear to God I’m being honest and not trolling. I honestly have no head for these kind of policies, and it’s very likely that I’m falling for some kind of "folksy wisdom" on how these things work. But it would help if people actually explained how these things work in their rebuttals, instead of just meeting them with mocking scorn.

  25. 25

    What can I possibly add to this?

    Remember, it’s not about coming up with good ideas, it’s about coming up with ideas that annoy the liberals. Because when liberals hate your idea … uh … Look! Sarah Palin!

    @Ellid: I kan haz indentured servants naow, plz?

  26. 26
    Zandar says:

    @camchuck:
    In Soviet Inside Karl Rove’s Head, Democrats force Republicans to vote against Best Patriotic Stimulus Bill!

  27. 27
    Michael says:

    Ahhhh – the collision of Ayn Rand’s gin-addled stupidity and misanthropy with the batshit crazy notions of racist redneck bible thumpers. It makes for such a heady blend that it sets my tingly parts afire.

  28. 28
    Walker says:

    @matt:

    But just letting us keep more of our money in the first place would mean we wouldn’t need as much help to begin with

    Because people at that end of the spectrum get more from the government than they pay in. When Republicans talk tax cuts, they mean for businesses and wealthier people, not working class. Sure, the working class gets a tax cut too, but the money they get to keep is less than the value lost from the eliminated governmental services.

  29. 29
    linda says:

    nobel laureate in economics winner, joe scarborough, apoplectic over the stimulus bill; his advice — do nothing. it will all work itself out in a couple of years.

  30. 30
    Hari says:

    In reply to Matt, I can only talk about my own situation. I did my taxes last weekend. I have one W-2, married, two kids, and a mortgage. With all of those deductions, my income tax burden was less than 9% of my income. I don’t think there’s anything special about my situation, and although I would love more money in my paycheck, I don’t think 9% is a lot of money to pay in income taxes. So the fixation on tax cuts doesn’t carry a lot of weight with me.

    And for the first time in a long time, I trust the government to come up with a better stimulus than tax cuts.

  31. 31
    TCG says:

    I hear that cutting taxes leads to economic growth and thus an increase in tax revenue. Essentially tax cuts pay for themselves.

    So if we cut taxes down to Zero, this would be an awesome idea!

    It would be awesome because the resulting economic growth spurred on by Zero Taxes would lead to increased tax revenue and would allow the Government to balance the budget overnight!

    Everyone knows that tax cuts pays for themselves, so a Total Tax Cut would pay for itself and even more.

  32. 32
    MikeJ says:

    Sure, the working class gets a tax cut too, but the money they get to keep is less than the value lost from the eliminated governmental services.

    But the wealthy actually get far more value from the government than they pay for too. Get rid of the government and it’s only the goodwill of the underclasses stopping mobs with pitchforks showing up at the home of the chairmen of the financial firms.

  33. 33
    Krista says:

    @matt:

    But just letting us keep more of our money in the first place would mean we wouldn’t need as much help to begin with.

    I’ll leave it to the folks with more knowledge on this site to explain it to you, but let me just say that if there were absolutely no federal tax, you would not be any better off. You would have more money in-pocket, but who’s to say that even with that, you would be able to afford all of the things that you need? I have no clue as to tax brackets in the U.S., but let’s say for shits and giggles that you pay 18% income tax on $30K a year. Do you honestly think that your $5400/year would pay for all of the things that the government currently provides to you? Plus there’s the not-inconsiderable factor that people have already mentioned: how the hell would the military and civil service be paid? Your taxes help employ a metric shitload of people. In other words, as dirty a term as it is to the fRight Wing, there really is such a thing as "the greater good", and it actually DOES benefit everybody.

  34. 34
    headpan says:

    matt, I’m about as stoopid as they come when it comes to economics, at least I thought I was until I read "When Corporations Rule the World" by Korten which was the only economic theory I have understood or thought made sense in a global economy.

    That said, as another commenter pointed out, tax cuts don’t do diddly if you don’t have a job and they do not create jobs. I ask in earnestness, just as you do, for smarter peeps on this blog to educate me on this if I am wrong.

    We stopped making our own stuff, shipped the remaining technology jobs overseas and became a consumer-driven economy. That all falls apart when people don’t have jobs or they are squeezed so tight financially that they can’t afford to go shopping since buying shit made in other countries is (or was) apparently the only thing we are good for these days.

    That’s pretty much all I know. If anyone can offer a theory, even if you don’t believe it, as to how tax cuts could possibly create jobs, I’d be interested to hear.

    Somehow, I don’t believe there is one since the biggest proponents, repubes, cannot seem to come up with one other beyond "because I said so&quot

  35. 35
    Wilson Heath says:

    Fraking anti-American anarchists. Sure, pick the one answer that will make sure that not only the American government but also the American and world economies will not merely circle the bowl, but be completely flushed. Stellar. Not even an economist who still buys the Laffer curve (which should pretty much be down to Arthur Laffer by now) could endorse such a complete abolition of our economy and civilization.

  36. 36
    JL says:

    @matt: Bush’s 1.5 trillion dollar tax cut was tilted to the wealthiest and did nothing to increase the income of the middle class. Wages have been consistently falling which is why the middle class is struggling. A healthier economy would grow the middle class increasing wages and creating jobs. It is better in the long run to increase wages than receiving one net sum. One net sum does not guarantee that you will be working next year. Bush’s tax cuts were the least efficient way of creating jobs. IMO if you increase food stamps, that increases food production and food processing which creates jobs and those folks spend their money buying cars or other staples, which creates jobs, etc. etc. etc. Just ask yourself, are you better off today than 8 years ago.
    An economist could explain it much better than I.

  37. 37
    JL says:

    @Krista: Our tax code have become less progressive over the years because of all the deductions and writeoffs. Most people who earn over 30,000 would pay 25%.

  38. 38
    El Cid says:

    If cutting taxes to zero does us good, imagine how awesome we’d be if we did negative tax rates!

  39. 39

    Teh Laughter Kurve means that the deficit will get smaller if we doo this.

  40. 40
    Zzyzx says:

    Of course the best part about this idea is that, even though it’s being billed as a holiday, any time anyone tried to restore the old tax code, they’d be tarred as being a tax raiser. No taxes ever! Our economy could be as thriving as Afghanistan’s!

  41. 41
    headpan says:

    Do you honestly think that your $5400/year would pay for all of the things that the government currently provides to you?

    Um, for me, that would be a "no." My insurance premium is up to almost $800 a month now. That does not include the $1,500 deductible. So that would be a definitive "no" for me.

    As I have said for that last few years, the peeps aren’t going to get it until they feel the pain and not one moment earlier. It has to affect "them and theirs" personally or they just don’t care. They’ve finally "gotten it." albet too late for my tastes.

    Nothing against matt personally, but it seems that because everyone he knows still has a job, he is missing the bigger picture. I have a job also, but it’s not doing much to keep me alive in terms of my health as I have already had one carcinoma (the reason my premiums are sky-high) – I won’t even go into what radiology treatments cost. Remeber that even if you have insurance, you still pay 20% of the bill – try 20% of $30,000. Nope, tax cuts don’t do it for me. Many, many repubes who are now in the same boat, *still* don’t get it – not sure what it’s going to take — starvation, I guess.

  42. 42
    El Cid says:

    you libruls just don’t unnerstand how much better off we would be with no taxes and small government except for this awesome new set of trillion dollar weapons we absolutely have to give the military so that we can invade a lot more countries and stay in Iraq forever

  43. 43
    PaulW says:

    Gasp! Yes, I said it, and I meant it. Go on an absolute, 100% Federal tax holiday. That’s a real shot in the arm that would suddenly inflate the economy by a solid $1.5 trillion or more per year.

    Dear Red State:
    What guarantees do we have that the $1.5 trillion you’re proposing would be freed up by completely ending all fed taxes will go 1) into new jobs, 2) into increased wages, 3) lowered health care costs, 4) fixing of mortgages, 5) fixing of insolvent banks, 6) doing anything other than adding onto the massive deficits we’ve piled up the last 8 years from Bush’s $1.3 trillion tax cuts?
    Answer: you can’t guarantee a damn thing. Because we’ve seen what happens when there’s massive tax cuts, even on half the scale you’re currently suggesting. Massive deficits are the result. All that freed up money from the tax cuts didn’t go into anything other than financial portfolios and hedge funds and Ponzi schemes. None of those ‘awesome’ tax cuts of yours between 2001-08 did anything to improve wages, did nothing for job growth, did nothing to combat health care costs, had nothing to do with the failure of oversight regarding toxic assets being built up in the mortgage/housing industry (that had more to do with conservative values regarding de-regulation and allowing the ‘magic of the market’ to solve all ills, but still tax cuts will not fix something that’s already a worthless Sh-tpile).
    Proposing even more tax cuts as a cure-all solution isn’t just insanity, it’s willful blindness to your own stupidity. If we keep following the likes of you, Mr. Red State, there won’t be a country, hell there won’t be a PLANET left to live on. Gods, do we have to keep listening to these brain-dead dittoheads?

  44. 44
    Zzyzx says:

    Now that I think about it, the best thing about this plan is that it creates all of the debt of the worst case Democrat uber-spending no compromise bill that would never pass, but instead of new roads and bridges and high speed rail lines and grid improvements, we get absolutely nothing for that money.

    …and you wonder why the Republican party doesn’t take you all that seriously…

  45. 45
    Stuck says:

    The most radical, and effective, thing we could do for the economy right now is this: Stop collecting all forms of Federal business, income and payroll tax. EVERY PENNY OF IT. RIGHT NOW.

    This has always been what’s existed at the bottom of the deep well of conservative thought. At least RS has pulled the curtain back on what the right is willing to do in order to kill the New Deal and Liberalism. Which is by starving the patient (America) in order to finish off it’s arch enemy.

    And now their worst nightmare has come true. A black neo-Roosevelt terromarxist with a Presidents Pen, and a congress ready to assault the sensibilities with oodles of new "Programs". So why not go for the brass ring and send the country to it’s death. The Phoenix after all, might arise from the ashes and be Republican.

  46. 46
    Zach says:

    Jesus they could at least use the right numbers. Assuming the Feds spend at the same rate as planned resulting in punishing debt this would increase the GDP by somewhat more than the revenue that would otherwise have been generated. Roughly $2.5 billion was collected last year. You would think that someone with such a fucking stupid idea would use numbers that were more optimistic. Assuming (and it’s a huge assumption) that the country didn’t go all Thunderdome and survived for a whole year the GDP would increase more than $1.5B.

  47. 47
    4tehlulz says:

    The most radical, and effective,

    Stupid question: Isn’t it the very essence of conservatism to be skeptical of radical ideas? It seems odd to me that someone who claims to be conservative would be touting any idea that is "most radical".

  48. 48
    Napoleon says:

    @4tehlulz:

    Modern "conservatives" are not in fact conservatives but radical reactionaries.

  49. 49
    Sleeper says:

    The most radical, and effective, thing we could do for the economy right now is this: Stop collecting all forms of Federal business, income and payroll tax.

    Man, that’s powerful stupid.

    …yeah, I guess that about sums it up. Back to you, John.

  50. 50
    Surly Duff says:

    A flat tax taken to the extreme. Excellent!

  51. 51
    BruceK says:

    Shot in the arm all right. Like a 12% potassium chloride hot-shot to the troops out in harm’s way who suddenly find out they’re being paid in Monopoly money and the government can’t buy them bullets any more.

    Oh, I’m sorry, was that defeatist talk?

  52. 52
    Jinchi says:

    per year?

    That’s not a "tax holiday". He wants a 100% cut in all taxes, forever.

    I wonder how loud he’d scream when the Defense budget ended up being cut to $0.

  53. 53

    Well that was somewhat inevitable.

  54. 54
    Krista says:

    @Krista: Our tax code have become less progressive over the years because of all the deductions and writeoffs. Most people who earn over 30,000 would pay 25%.

    Are you serious? Is that just your federal income tax? If so, that really sucks…our tax rate is 15.5% for income less than $37K, and we STILL somehow manage to get universal healthcare out of the deal.

    (Then again, our military is pretty sad, compared to yours, so that probably explains it right there.)

  55. 55
    TheHatOnMyCat says:

    What can I possibly add to this?

    Well, this would be a great time to privatize Social Security.

  56. 56
    DougJ says:

    That’s a real shot in the arm that would suddenly inflate the economy by a solid $1.5 trillion or more per year.

    We collected about $2.7 trillion in federal taxes each year (including payroll).

    Some pay off, huh?

  57. 57

    To point out the obvious, no taxes would mean the end of the country altogether. Bottom line, no one is going to lend money to a government with no mechanism for raising funds to pay back the loans, or the interest on it at least.

  58. 58
    PeakVT says:

    What can I possibly add to this?

    That you hope Congressional Repukes take it up next week? At least one of those a**holes has to be stupid and/or dishonest enough to take up this "idea".

  59. 59
    SpotWeld says:

    Aren’t the majority of Red States out there the ones who take in more federal money than they collect?

    Hypothecially a lot of the NE states would be in as much a mess as they are right in now with just thier state tax collections, the same for CA.

    But the hard core, GOP base states, they need that federal money.

  60. 60
    BC says:

    On taxes for lower paid workers – they pay more in payroll taxes, sales taxes, property taxes, and other state and local taxes than they pay in federal taxes. Congress cannot do anything about state and local taxes. This is another way the Republicans lie – they talk about the TOTAL tax burden (federal, state, local), then propose to do something about only one of those. For people on the lower income scales, the federal income tax is probably already either very low (10% or less) or nonexistent. So everyone supports the Republicans because we all like to have a little more money, but the lower paid people find they have very little more than they had before – maybe $10-15 more per paycheck. Classic shell game.

  61. 61
    Joshua Norton says:

    Because when liberals hate your idea … uh … Look! Sarah Palin!

    Ah yes. Good old Sarah. Karl Rove with smaller boobs.

    Actually I could probably get behind doing away with all forms of taxes – but just for me. The rest of you will have to cowboy up.

    (I keed, I keed)

  62. 62
    b-psycho says:

    Get rid of the government and it’s only the goodwill of the underclasses stopping mobs with pitchforks showing up at the home of the chairmen of the financial firms.

    Heh…is that supposed to be a case against anarchy, or a case for it? That pesky "good will" is and always has been undeserved on our part.

  63. 63
    Ash Can says:

    A zero-tax, zero-government, all-voluntary charity/contract-based society is the libertarian ideal, so this guy would appear to be going all-out Randian with his suggestion. However, I’d be willing to bet that, as one of the last true Republicans on Earth (which in his mind he surely is), he still wants to keep some kind of government around to incarcerate gays and other bad guys, bomb the shit out of foreigners, and keep women from doing things he doesn’t want them to do. Therein lies his dilemma. If anyone were to point it out to him, he might spend the next few months huddled in a corner puzzling over it, instead of sitting at his computer posting more bilge on the intertoobz.

  64. 64
    Xanthippas says:

    You know the thing is, even if we did that and the government promptly collapsed and the economy failed to actually get any better, the fact that it didn’t work would still somehow be the libtards’ fault.

  65. 65
    El Cid says:

    I demand that all the federally subsidized red states begin to return their federal subsidies out of sheer principle.

  66. 66
    b-psycho says:

    Ash Can: not all libertarians follow Rand. Waaaaay too many of them, but not all. Obviously her background made acknowledging the degree to which capitalists have the government to thank for their status impossible, since it wasn’t as obvious as communism. She really should’ve been written off a long time ago, the appeal lingers on for some reason…

  67. 67
    b-psycho says:

    As for taxes: IMO, as long as government exists, it only makes sense that people pay for it based on how much they use it. There’s a reason why the only encounter with the law the average person has is their local police, meanwhile every corporation has an army of legal experts searching for loopholes like they’re made of gold.

  68. 68
    Mike in NC says:

    RS has pulled the curtain back on what the right is willing to do in order to kill the New Deal and Liberalism. Which is by starving the patient (America) in order to finish off it’s arch enemy.

    Time to hear more on those Taliban tactics the House GOP is promising to unleash. Of course they’d abolish Social Security, Medicaid/Medicare, etc. in a heartbeat but what else do they have up their sleeve?

  69. 69
    Persia says:

    I can’t even laugh today. My dad’s in the hospital. He’s legally blind and suffers from what the medical profession cheerfully calls ‘multiple morbidities.’ He regularly worked 50-60 hour days until he was disabled. He is a vet who served honorably. And these assholes would happily kick him to the fucking curb for their bullshit.

    Jesus Christ.

  70. 70
    Blotter says:

    translation: I don’t like Obama’s agenda…please agree that we should prevent him from doing anything by eviscerating the federal budget

  71. 71
    pluege says:

    What can I possibly add to this?

    Surely we can do better than that. In addition to no taxes at all, the government can write every American a $100 check every week, no wait make that $1,000 check per week. That will surely give the economy even bigger boost.

  72. 72
    SGEW says:

    @Persia: Sympathies, for real. I really hope that Shinseki comes through for the V.A., and that Congress can get their bloody act together and stop the Republican party’s War on Veterans.

    Again. What the hell is wrong with these people?

  73. 73
    Noonan says:

    This is the kind of critical thinking that led the GOP to shirk stem cell research and embrace Mike Huckabee. Obama’s stimulus package is basically right out of an Econ 101 textbook. The GOP would rather defer to what’s in the Bible. And if that doesn’t work, then cutting taxes and wearing tin-foil hats is the next best thing. The common thread here is the GOP’s aversion to science, math and reasoning. For all the wailing about tax cuts, it’s pretty tough to find an economist worth any credibility who is advocating for this move. What we have here is the continued denial of critical thinking and in its place the acceptance of things unseen. If faith is a test of accepting the unknown, so is being a Republican.

  74. 74
    jack says:

    amazing how tax cuts aren’t considered "spending" by these idiots when in fact you have to "PAY" for them somehow.

  75. 75
    Dick Cabeza says:

    I think it would be a shot in the face!

  76. 76
    Mr Blifil says:

    Do think tank sandwich coupons count as a taxable form of income?

  77. 77
    hcohen says:

    Wait, next these guys will tell us that by reducing taxes to 0, we will increase government tax revenue.

  78. 78
    Countervail says:

    What absolutely mystifies me about these anti-tax zealots is the notion that if only we didn’t have to pay money to the government, somehow that a) people would have more money in their pockets and b) that people would do the right thing and voluntarily financially support the needs that make a society function.

    Does anyone NOT realize that if taxes are reduced, cost of living and salaries are consequently reduced? That’s the reality these people conveniently avoid discussing. Anti-tax advocates only want reduction on THEIR taxes, to give them a financial advantage. They couldn’t rationally support them across the board due to the overall effect. And then taking into consideration the personal largess of those in the top brackets of income (or those aspiring to be in the top brackets) are usually the largest whiners, how does anyone have much empathy for reduction of taxes in the first place?

    I appreciate the sentiment of merit based compensation and rewards, but when does anyone realize their fortune in a bubble apart from the those things our government and others in society help make a reality? We only have to look to other countries with more financial equality and countries with less to see how each benefits or undermines a country and its people. And from the greed of the big banks (and the stupidity of consumers securing out-of-reach mortgages) we know that it’s more likely people will not do the right thing when they see an opportunity to get ahead.

    So it really irks me when dunderheads spout off with retarded answers like that at Red State, with no basis in fact and no support to their conclusion. Why is it that as a society we’ve forgotten to ask such a basic question to this kind of nonsense – "Is that true?" – and make people really qualify their positions.

  79. 79
    Ed Drone says:

    As for taxes: IMO, as long as government exists, it only makes sense that people pay for it based on how much they use it.

    I’m old enough to remember the 50s, when the standard of living was rising for the middle class and the economy was expanding. The top tax bracket was 90%. Therefore, let us return to 1954, complete with the tax laws of that day, and — voila! — instant prosperity! Well, maybe within two years, if not instantly.

    And what was the result of that 90% bracket? Why, reinvestment; rather than losing the money, smart businessmen found something they could invest in that lessened their tax burden, and in the process, created jobs! Funny how that worked, isn’t it?

    Now, if I was Red-state crazy, I’d say, hell, make that top rate 100%, and we’d definitely be better off than even in the 50s, and quicker, too!

    But I’m not that stupid, so I’ll just say, "Raise taxes to stimulate investment. It’s counterproductive to allow people to remove wealth from the system.

    Ed

  80. 80

    #7 – Believe it or not, but there are a significant number of Americans who believe in exactly that. Dickens’ novels (and those of George Orwell) were cautionary tales, not operator’s manuals, but tell that to these people watch their faces get all red and stuff.

    #8 – More likely, you’ll have a certain number of these twits actually putting bullets in their heads, Monty Python style, to further drive home their argument.

    #21 – The problem with disbanding the federal government is that there are several states that would quickly descend into various forms of anarchy, totalitarian dictatorship, or mob rule, if it weren’t for the federal government’s moderating influence.

    #60 – ROFL! Karl Rove with smaller boobs! LOL!

  81. 81
    Adrienne says:

    A zero-tax, zero-government, all-voluntary charity/contract-based society

    Only problem with this libertarian wetdream is that contracts don’t exist without a legal mechanism for enforcement which provides consequences for those who breach. Contracts are legal contracts which are only as valuable as the mechanism that enforces them, ie: GOVERNMENT.

  82. 82
    Adrienne says:

    that people would do the right thing and voluntarily financially support the needs that make a society function.

    Yeah, because we won’t have the free rider problem with those public goods that make society function.

    These people are idiots. Can we round them up and drop them off in some remote location, survivor style? I mean, they definitely won’t have to pay taxes there, so what’s the issue?

  83. 83
    Atlliberal says:

    @Dave:

    Deficits are only bad when they are "Democrat" deficits, silly.
    IOKIYAR

  84. 84
    CMcC says:

    You quote: "Stop collecting all forms of Federal business, income and payroll tax. EVERY PENNY OF IT. RIGHT NOW."

    You’ve left out the best part. Everybody knows that as taxes are cut, economic activity increases, and the government ends up collecting more revenues even as the rate of taxation declines. The balanced budgets of the Reagan and Bush years prove this (even though they only materialized during the presidency of Bill Clinton, which does not prove that good things happen only to those who get themselves c#ck-s*@kered, but does prove that Poppy Bush should have done what "real men" always wanted to do, and that was go to Baghdad and then on to Tehran). Therefore, in order to maximize revenues, it makes sense to cut rates as low as possible, which is zero.

    And we do need some revenues, because if the rest of the world forgets that we are the greatest nation ever, we need to be able to "shock and awe" their asses.

    By the way, as more and more children are home-schooled by their moms and Fox News, all of these mathematical and economic truths will become clearer, just as more and more Americans are finally learning history — for example, that it was really FDR who caused the Great Depression, because the stock market would not have crashed in 1929 if it had not been for 1932. Finally, some simple logic.

  85. 85
    SFAW says:

    Modern "conservatives" are not in fact conservatives but radical reactionaries.

    Christ, now you’re sounding like Chairman Mao, you commie.

    And for all of you whiners who complain that no tax revenues would compromise national defense:
    I have absolutely no doubt that the brave RedStaters will defend us to the death (theirs or ours? hmm …), in a stirring re-enactment of Red Dawn. The only problem I see with that scenario is that, when confronted by a marauding band of Cheetos-stained, pasty, porcine psychos yelling "Vulvarines!!", the Taliban’s howls of derisive laughter will cause Our Heroes to run crying back to Mommy.

    (Thanks to gil mann for Vulvarines! It’s the gift that keeps on giving.)

  86. 86
    Mike Toreno says:

    I don’t believe this is idiotic for the same reason everybody thinks. It sort of sees the problem, although a long way off through a fog. The problem is insufficient use of American productive capacity, and the solution is to introduce more demand into the economy. The only way to do that is for the government to introduce the demand, and the only way to do that is for government expenditures to be increased without offsetting tax increase – to run a gigantic deficit. The reason the Red State solution is idiotic is that it’s too extreme, and more targeted toward the wealthy, but more importantly, that it’s inefficient. The total tax holiday would stimulate the economy, but nowhere near as much as direct government expenditure.

  87. 87
    Calouste says:

    So I assume that means that Eric E. is going to head off to Iraq to hand out pink slips to the troops and tell them that they have to walk home because the government won’t have a dime left to pay for them and sure as hell no one is going to lend trillions to some entity that doesn’t have any income? No?

  88. 88
    Adrienne says:

    The reason the Red State solution is idiotic is that it’s too extreme,

    I prefer to believe that it’s idiotic because it’s just idiotic, but hey, different strokes. It’s not only inefficient, it’s just plain dumb.

    A total tax holiday would result in higher unemployment because of how many people are actually employed and paid by those tax dollars. What? We’d eliminate taxes and run the exact same government we do now? Really?

  89. 89
    feckless says:

    There is only one explanation.

    The man is a chinese mole.

    Not a spy.

    An actual burrowing animal from Asia.

  90. 90
    scarshapedstar says:

    How about we collect the taxes and then give a 100% refund to 33.33% of us? Like, you go down to the DMV and if you win a blindfolded game of 3-card monte, then you get your money back?

  91. 91
    NonWonderDog says:

    I’ll never understand what these people think happens to tax money. Do they think it’s just thrown in a pit somewhere? Used to fuel a furnace to cremate the bodies of the unborn?

    Obviously, money taken out of the economy by the government is put back into the economy. Either by buying shit directly, or by paying workers (who then buy shit). It seems to me that this is far more effective from an economic standpoint than investment in real estate, which is what happened to the Bush tax cuts.

  92. 92
    Ash Can says:

    @feckless: I’m willing to bet that small burrowing rodents have far more common sense than this yahoo does.

  93. 93
    Persia says:

    @SGEW:

    Thanks. He’s a lot better than he was last night, and for the most part the VA’s done all right by him, aside from requiring a few unnecessary appointments here and there. He’s old enough, and his health problems not connected enough to his service, to be out of the usual BS.

  94. 94
    Mike Toreno says:

    Adrienne, yeah, I think the idea is to eliminate taxes while running the same government. This would result in increase consumption and business investment, and would stimulate the economy, just nowhere near enough to overcome the negative effects of trying to run a government exclusively through borrowing. The present actual plan is a massive increase in government spending, with something of a decrease in taxes, which is going to be a lot more stimulative than the Red State plan. I think a more stimulative approach would be to increase taxes on the very wealthy, who save nearly all of their money, with tax cuts or elimination for those who spend all their money, and larger government expenditures than are presently planned. Any stimulative approach will increase inflation, but in this case that’s good, because the present trend is deflationary, and it’s going to take a good deal of inflation just to achieve price stability, I think.

  95. 95
    TenguPhule says:

    and the only way to do that is for government expenditures to be increased without offsetting tax increase – to run a gigantic deficit.

    Which is what drove me crazier about the Bush Deferred tax-hikes.

    Instead of paying down the deficit, they ran up the bills in relatively good times.

    And now we’re all in the shit hole and the tab is running low.

  96. 96
    robertdsc says:

    But how would we electrify the railroads?

  97. 97
    TenguPhule says:

    What can I possibly add to this?

    The solution to Zero government income is…..MORE DAHKA BORROWING!

  98. 98
    bvac says:

    I just read the source post to that, and I swear every single comment has the word socialist in it. Here, like this one:

    Obama is only a socialist to the extent that socialism is a subset of Communism. His first major influence, the man his grandfather handed him over to was a Soviet agent.

    You don’t say?

  99. 99
    fredrick of hollywood says:

    Counting the comments below a post at RedState is good sport. When Kos or Atrios puts up a post, there are usually 200-600 comments within a couple of hours. At Redstate, many of the posts only have 7 comments after being left on the site for days. What a pathetic bunch of jerks.

  100. 100
    The Populist says:

    Okay, let’s see. If you give everybody a tax holiday it would definitely work but at what expense? Will congress work for free (no)? How will the states cover the payments they get from the feds (welfare, food stamps, school funds)? Will soldiers be paid?

    Doing this will not get infrastructure projects built or people back to work. If you tell me I won’t have any taxes taken out of my check, that’s awesome BUT how does this work for people who aren’t pulling a paycheck?

    Even if we do the no-tax thing these maroons don’t understand that the gov’t will have to write some serious IOUs. Printing money will be the norm.

    Sorry, Red State – you are wrong on this (as always). Wow, I didn’t even call them fucktards…

  101. 101
    Lisa says:

    After reading that post several times, I have developed an uncontrollable twitch in my eye.

    Those crazy wingnuts.

  102. 102
    TenguPhule says:

    But how would we electrify the railroads?

    Tie BOB to them upside down and ask him to explain how shale oil will save us all.

  103. 103
    allen m says:

    Since investors are willing to take negative interest on u.s. bonds why doesn’t the government just guaranty every bank deposit regardless of size. No cash is required. The cash looking for a safe haven will run to u.s. banks, make them solvent, and it could provide the bank rescue which, until done, will thwart any attempt to get our economy going. I am sure there is a flaw in this, but what is it?

  104. 104
    b-psycho says:

    why doesn’t the government just guaranty every bank deposit regardless of size.

    I suspect beyond a certain level guarantees ring false.

    Of course, some would argue that the concept of deposit insurance itself rings false regardless, but I won’t get into that here.

  105. 105
    r€nato says:

    this thread is full to overflowing with win and I probably could not add anything else, but I will anyway:

    nobel laureate in economics winner, joe scarborough, apoplectic over the stimulus bill; his advice—do nothing. it will all work itself out in a couple of years.

    Well, sure it would, just like the Earth will survive global climate change and work it out over a few centuries or so. The Earth does not really care if coastal cities are rendered inhabitable by flooding or if vast swathes of the midwest can no longer grow the food needed to feed Americans.

    Likewise, conservatards do not care if the poor and less-fortunate starve in the streets, so long as it does not happen to them.

  106. 106
    r€nato says:

    to re-re-re-state the obvious, tax cuts are only effective if taxation of a particular activity is so high that it discourages or reduces to an undesirable level the desired activity.

    the problem is not that Americans’ income is being taken by the government or that employment laws have made hiring employees cost-prohibitive; the problem is the lack of jobs. And that problem is not caused by excessive taxation but by the collapse of credit and lending in our economy.

    (which of course was caused by Clinton, Carter, CRA, Barney Fag and Chris Dodd… but I digress)

    The real issue, as pointed out by many of you, is that reich-wingers want to live in a world where they can have a military empire, streets, clean air, freeways, safe food and drugs and so on for free. They want all these government services but they don’t want to pay for them.

    Where I come from, that’s called a ‘mooch’ not a ‘patriot’.

  107. 107
    Tony J says:

    Sure as hell no one is going to lend trillions to some entity that doesn’t have any income? No?

    Heh. Imagine the following meta-conversation.

    China – "Interest payments, please."

    Red State America – "Kiss my ass, Chairman Mousey (snicker), we’re perfecting the Republic. Go ask George Soros for a handout (chortle)."

    China – "Seriously? (pause) You’re not even fundng your military?"

    Red State America – "(munch munch) Wolverines! ("Oh, good one, dude".)"

    China – "I love you."

    MSM – "We welcome our new Chinese overlords."

  108. 108
    oh really says:

    Reduce all tax rates to zero. Absolutely brilliant. I can see a Nobel Prize in economics in Erick’s future.

    Of course, using the infallible Laffer (laugher?) Curve, by reducing tax rates to zero, revenues will go to infinite and the free lunch will be here forever.

    How could the American people ever have been stupid enough to vote the GOP out?

  109. 109
    SFAW says:

    Now that Erick Ericksdottir has solved the stimulus-package crisis, he’s going to turn his attention to fixing the auto makers.

    In response to the massive losses at the Formerly-Big Three, which of course are the fault of Teh Unions and their massive wages and benefits, Ericksdottir will state that the way for Detroit to save billions is for them to fire/lay off all of the people in the manufacturing plants and close the plants. Once that happens, their balance sheets will change dramatically!

    re: TenguPhule @ 97
    It’s not more borrowing that’s needed – it’s MORE COWBELL!

  110. 110
    Joshua Norton says:

    do nothing. it will all work itself out in a couple of years.

    Oh yes. Because that’s working out so well for us here in California.

  111. 111
    scarshapedstar says:

    @r€nato:

    Conservatism is a deadweight loss.

  112. 112
    Joshua Norton says:

    Pay the CEO’s bonuses with toxic assets. Win/Win.

  113. 113
    Tsulagi says:

    What can I possibly add to this?

    Pretty much nothing. I like how to stave off naysayers to show he’d really given it his deepest thought thinking it through he finished with this…

    Are you worried about the resulting fiscal deficits? Don’t be. There is a huge amount of demand for debt from global investors, and the credit crunch has blown a huge hole in private debt formation. That leaves a lot of room for the government to borrow more.

    True brilliance. Yep, as everyone knows there are international oceans of money just waiting to buy trillions more of our debt. Umm, if that’s so, how come after eight years of Republican rule all we got are dry lakes?

    But anyway, no doubt that clamoring for more of our debt would only intensify if we cut off the means to make payments on it. Of course the value of the US dollar in that situation could only soar to great heights. Wingnuts know their math.

    Given this brilliance it’s clear that Commander E.E. is evolving beyond even his creation, the RSSF, and may soon leave its ranks. If not already, he is becoming a Jedi of stupid.

  114. 114
    Tsulagi says:

    Speaking of the wingnut Jedi, he posted an email response to his brilliant plan of cutting all taxes. On the RS front page. I am a little surprised. Some highlights…

    Seriously – you are a fucking over the top, blue-ribbon winning, one in a million tool.

    Please never, ever reproduce.

    Okay, which one of you fuckers sent that? BOB? I’m kinda guessing Erick printed that there expecting to get the RSSF regulars all whipped up defending his brilliance in the comments. So far, pretty much crickets.

    These guys crack me up.

  115. 115
    r€nato says:

    Because that’s working out so well for us here in California.

    fuck ’em, they didn’t vote for us anyway.

    /wingnuts

  116. 116
    Rome Again says:

    @oh really:

    Of course, using the infallible Laffer (laugher?) Curve

    Reality seems to prove more and more all the time, to me at least, that Orwell had supernatural omniscient abilities.

  117. 117
    Rome Again says:

    Judd Gregg is out, apparently he couldn’t be bipartisan enough.

  118. 118
    Innocent Bystander says:

    Gawd, these people just get more and more disconnected from reality. Yeah, lets defund the USG and think how we’ll spend all that extra money we’ll have-

    * lost mufflers and broken axles for our degraded roads.
    * more trips to the hospital for eating toxic food.
    * hiring personnel security and more weaponry to protect your self and possessions from resulting lawlessness.
    * fire fighting equipment, just in case you experience a house fire.
    * caveat emptor on every purchase/transaction.
    * lower lifespans due to degradaton of air/water quality.
    * outhouses and wells to make up for those services our government funds.

    Of course, that extra USDs we’ll have in our pockets will suddenly become worth a whole lot less as people refuse to invest in our debt if there is no confidence in a security that has no government capable of backing it.

  119. 119
    PaulB says:

    For the record, Erick didn’t write that post, Francis Cianfrocca did.

  120. 120
    nathaniel says:

    My favorite bit is this comment in respone to the letter

    I like his list of stuff everyone agrees government should do.

    border guards, customs, INS, the FBI, the CIA, Guantanamo, federal prisons, airport security

    Not to blow homeslices dome, but all those things could be run privately

    Not to blow wingnuts dome, but private does not mean free. Why would a private company want to run the CIA unless someone paid them to do it? Who would be the one paying them if the US government wasn’t collecting taxes?

  121. 121
    rea says:

    Red State: What would happen if we abolished all taxes?

    Oracle of Delphi: If you do that, a great nation will be destroyed.

    Red State: Woo hoo! No more China!

    Oracle of Delphi: Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad.

  122. 122
    Oliver's Neck says:

    @matt:

    I realize I’m a bit late to this party, but i hope you’re still reading and that what follows is useful to you.

    The main value of Capitalism as a development of human society is that it showed us all the value of socialized labor. By this, I simply mean to say that we discovered that if lots of us get together and work at something difficult and/or complex, we can get some pretty amazing things done with significantly greater efficiency than if we do those things singly or in very small groups. The reason for this is that vast amounts of labor can be distributed across vast numbers of laborers, making each discrete task of any undertaking manageable. Sure, we had hints of this notion via large engineering projects, like the pyramids, but we hadn’t yet caught on that such things could be applied to the everyday needs of life.

    In a society like ours, money is used as an abstract of labor. By this, I mean simply that, say, that $20 in your pocket is meant to be representative of some amount of someone’s labor. When you wish to make use of someone else’s labor (by buying an already existing product that they made, getting them to make you something, etc.) you exchange that abstract representative (the $20) for (what is deemed to be) $20 worth of labor.

    Now, when you pay less in taxes, or nothing in taxes, you may indeed have more money in your pocket (although one can make a strong argument that this, at best, would be a temporary condition for all but a very few of us). However, you are then left with the problem of trying to exchange that money not simply for more of the little stuff of daily living (food, shelter, entertainment) but also for a whole lot of very complex labor. Roads are an easy example: if you need a road built to your home, or repairs to an existing road, you somehow need to engage in all the difficult work of getting together the necessary materials and labor to fulfill that need. You can try to do this alone with your own resources; you can try to get together a group of private individuals whom you must convince they will see a benefit from that work and then pool your resources; you can appeal to a private corporate entity to deal with the logistics on your behalf (in order that it might make a profit); or you can band together in a society which collectively uses its resources to deal with the problem of the road. The advantages of the last are myriad, but one of them is that the immediate cost and difficulty to you for the creation/repair of the road are significantly lessened and many people who will never use your road will help you achieve its realization – the "cost" of which is that you help them similarly with things you may never directly use. If you choose to not support/participate in this last option (participation coming, in part, via taxes) then you are left to do those difficult things via one of the previous (and, I would claim, inferior) ways.

    Which is why, as many people above have said, one gets a lot more benefit (regardless of one’s relative wealth or poverty) out of the money one pays in taxes than if they had to use their individual resources for these large, complex needs.

    Sorry for the length, but I think you asked a deep and serious question which deserved a similar response (whether I’ve achieved that I leave to you).

  123. 123
    Jay says:

    Why don’t we just cut federal tax but quadruple the asshole tax?

  124. 124
    SFAW says:

    Why don’t we just cut federal tax but quadruple the asshole tax?

    No, No, NO!!!

    The wingnuts want to pay LESS tax, not MORE. Your plan would bankrupt them, and we certainly wouldn’t want that, now would we?

  125. 125
    Jay Schiavone says:

    If there is no government, who will print the money we’ll all have more of?
    And talk about an all-volunteer army…

  126. 126

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