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Old 08-23-2012, 10:20 AM   #41
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Romney was a frugal fiscal conservative in a state where cutting government spending was as foreign an idea as it is in Washington today.
...who passed 'universal' healthcare at the state level. Some conservative - you 'conservatives' would **** a brick if you got 'taxed' like the uninsured do here in MA (though you'll enjoy it soon).

I would be much more willing vote Romney if he just manned up and took credit for the decisions he made as a governor (since I agreed with a fair amount of them). Instead he's just pandering to the increasingly conservative populous in this country.

Like wise, the outline of his tax plan (as currently defined) is not only unsustainable, it also applies a greater burden on the middle to upper middle class citizens of this country ... which I'm fine with so long as EVERYONE is taking on an burden. Dumping the capital gains tax excludes that possibility.

Tax Reform

*In for Brainy labeling Brooking's a liberal propagandist (even though it's been rated repeatedly as one of the most respected and unbiased think tanks in D.C.).

-Zach
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:38 AM   #42
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...who passed 'universal' healthcare at the state level. Some conservative - you 'conservatives' would **** a brick if you got 'taxed' like the uninsured do here in MA (though you'll enjoy it soon).
First. Romneycare is not universal healthcare. Second, states can do whatever they want at a state level (like blood tests with marrage licenses, or forced to do an ultra-sound if preggers lik ehere in VA, etc. etc) ...unlike the federal governmet; which has no authority to force these sorts of things.

What they did in mass was considered a free-market alternative to the socialization of healthcare at the federal level. Yes, they are forcing you to get coverage, but the idea was to prevent a free-rider system from going out of control and the state from going into more debt. something the federal government forced states to deal with in 1946.

The bill passed by 154-2 in the Massachusetts House and unanimously, 37-0, in the Massachusetts Senate.

Am I a fan of the idea? no. But it is not to be compared to obamacare. when you can truncate Obamacare to a one-page bill that did nothing but mandate that every American buy health insurance, then somehow be ruled constitutional, I'll begin to consider the comparison.

So until then, I'll gladly support a fiscal states-rights conservative that can manage to get granted emergency powers to save a liberal state from finacial ruin.

ugh, way too many words to read that article.

Last edited by Braineack; 08-23-2012 at 10:55 AM.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:32 AM   #43
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First. Romneycare is not universal healthcare. Second, states can do whatever they want at a state level (like blood tests with marrage licenses, or forced to do an ultra-sound if preggers lik ehere in VA, etc. etc) ...unlike the federal governmet; which has no authority to force these sorts of things.
This is a bit of a grey area. While it technically isn't universal healthcare when compared to European standards, there are healthcare plans provided by the state which are subsidized to the point where the consumer is only responsible for co-pays/deductions, for example: http://www.massresources.org/masshealth-essential.html

You can claim it's not universal healthcare, however, Mass healthcare reform clearly casts a social 'safety net' .... which is the fundamental purpose of universal healthcare (or at least that's how it's sold).



-Zach
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:11 PM   #44
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I would be much more willing vote Romney if he just manned up and took credit for the decisions he made as a governor (since I agreed with a fair amount of them). Instead he's just pandering to the increasingly conservative populous in this country.
I agree with a lot of that sentiment. I would probably respect the Romney-as-Mass-Governor more than I do the Romney-as-Presidential-candidate.

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Like wise, the outline of his tax plan (as currently defined) is not only unsustainable, it also applies a greater burden on the middle to upper middle class citizens of this country ... which I'm fine with so long as EVERYONE is taking on an burden. Dumping the capital gains tax excludes that possibility.
I'll try to read through the Brooking's article a little later, but help me with the last part of your statement. From Romney's website:

• Maintain current tax rates on interest, dividends, and capital gains
• Eliminate taxes for taxpayers with AGI below $200,000 on interest, dividends, and capital gains
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:12 PM   #45
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it's a safety net, yes. it's not comphrensive healthcare tax reform.
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Old 08-23-2012, 12:13 PM   #46
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Fox may be a pioneer in terms of presenting editorial as fact,
This has been the norm since before Guttenberg built his printing press.

Beware the wisdom of a man whose historical reference begins sometime after his birth.
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:18 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Scrappy Jack View Post
I agree with a lot of that sentiment. I would probably respect the Romney-as-Mass-Governor more than I do the Romney-as-Presidential-candidate.



I'll try to read through the Brooking's article a little later, but help me with the last part of your statement. From Romney's website:

• Maintain current tax rates on interest, dividends, and capital gains
• Eliminate taxes for taxpayers with AGI below $200,000 on interest, dividends, and capital gains
Edit: the latest plan from Romney/Ryan eliminated proposed cuts to capital gains taxes (to be fair, apparently Ryan eliminated that a while back). Whoops.

Much of the increased tax burden on the middle class comes in the form of reduced right offs/expenditure which largely impact the middle class (effectively increasing their tax rate).

Here's a snippet that basically gets to the heart of it:

"In this paper we examine the tradeoffs between rates, tax expenditures, and the progressivity of the tax schedules that are inherent in revenue-neutral tax returns. We show that plans that advance steeply lower marginal tax rate structures would require deep cuts in tax expenditures to offset the revenue losses arising from low rates. Because many of the largest tax expenditures benefit middle- and lower-income households, deep reductions tax expenditures can alter the distribution of the tax burden. To illustrate these tradeoffs, we examine as an example a set of tax rate reductions specified in Governor Romney’s tax plan. We show that given the proposed tax rates and proscription against reducing tax expenditures aimed at saving and investment, cutting tax expenditures will result in a net tax cut for high-income taxpayers and a net tax increase for lower- and/or middle-income taxpayers—even if individual income tax expenditures could be eliminated in a way designed to make the resulting tax system as progressive as possible."

Granted, so much of this is speculative since the plan is so poorly defined.

-Zach
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:41 PM   #48
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Is anyone going to comment on how compassionless you have to be to walk away like he did from a sick person in a wheelchair asking a legitimate question. To me there's something phenomenally unsettling about how he handled that.
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:02 PM   #49
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Much of the increased tax burden on the middle class comes in the form of reduced right offs/expenditure which largely impact the middle class (effectively increasing their tax rate).
Like I said, I'll dig in to the report when I make some time, maybe tonight at home. I will also try to run a ballpark estimation on the impact of eliminating most of the tax deductions I view most likley to be eliminated (like various real estate and depreciation related deductions, but not charitable gifting or retirement plan contributions) while reducing my marginal rate by 20% (relative, not absolute) and leaving my treatment of interest, capital gains and dividends the same.

Remember, most interest is taxable at ordinary income rates assuming they are held in non-tax favored accounts (checking, savings, CDs, most money markets, corporate bonds, non-qualified dividends, etc).


Then the question becomes, what percentage of taxpayers itemize versus take the standard deduction. Someone google that and cite a reasonable source (preferable with IRS as primary data source).

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Granted, so much of this is speculative since the plan is so poorly defined.
Exactly. Then again, any tax or spending plan is a "wishlist" from either candidate as it ultimately has to pass through Congress.
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:38 PM   #50
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Exactly. Then again, any tax or spending plan is a "wishlist" from either candidate as it ultimately has to pass through Congress.

we'll see that again the next time we declare war again...
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Old 08-23-2012, 04:51 PM   #51
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Quick back of the spreadsheet calculation:

If we eliminate all sales tax and real estate related deductions but kept everything else the same, including the standard exemption amount (household income under $250k) while reducing all marginal rates by 20% (taking them from 10,15,25,28,33 to 8,12,20,22,26), we would pay almost $6k more for the year in taxes using the 2011 data.

That would leave my effective rate as a percentage of taxable income unchanged (naturally) at about 20% but would raise my effective rate as a percentage of gross income from 16% to 19%.

As a household in the upper bounds of the middle-middle class or lower bounds of the upper-middle class, those changes outlined above would, in fact, raise my taxes.
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Old 08-23-2012, 05:54 PM   #52
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Precisely ... as the plan is outlined it looks like an across the board drop for everyone (yaaaaaayyyy!), however, if one does as you have done ... not so much.

-Zach
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:15 PM   #53
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Precisely ... as the plan is outlined it looks like an across the board drop for everyone (yaaaaaayyyy!), however, if one does as you have done ... not so much.
Maybe. Maybe I am an outlier, a fat cat that likes to consider himself "middle class." Or maybe I just have a boatload of real estate-related deductions.

Using [the most recent IRS data I could find in a 10 second search], it appears as though less than one-third of US personal tax returns utilized itemized deductions. Spun another way, over 2/3 of American tax filers would see a tax decrease under the Romney proposal I partially made up (with the brunt of increases borne in a very progressive manner).

Compare that with letting the Bush tax cuts expire where in potentially everyone could see some tax increase: every single marginal tax rate would increase slightly (including the elimination of the 10% bracket), capital gains rate increases, dividend taxation, etc.

Last edited by Scrappy Jack; 08-23-2012 at 07:34 PM.
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Old 08-23-2012, 09:59 PM   #54
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This has been the norm since before Guttenberg built his printing press.

Beware the wisdom of a man whose historical reference begins sometime after his birth.
Give some credit. Being in on the ground floor of basically getting corporations the same rights as a human being is pretty impressive. Its not that they skew stuff to market a product effectively, its that they laid the groundwork so damned throughly that makes them pioneers. Guttenberg did not have that ****.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:10 PM   #55
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All politicians are liars. Bush, Obama, Romney. Theyre all the same, they all have almost identical views that they make out to be vastly different so people will be too busy arguing to realize that the federal government is ******* you in the ***, all day, every day.

Anybody that can sit back at this point and say "I am a republican" or "I am a democrat" is either very poorly informed or mentally ill.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:22 PM   #56
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we'll see that again the next time we declare war again...
No kidding.

Heres my rub with states rights though; I dont really want any jackbooted thugs messing with my life, state or federal.

If Romney is so good at getting emergency powers at a state level, and he is OK with passing a tax penalty system for those without health insurance that taxachussets liberals are almost 100% ok with, what does that indicate for behavior as president? Dubya with a twist of Carter? Ugh.

I am not sure I like that picture. Thats a bit anecdotal but then seeing into the future typicaly is.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:24 PM   #57
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Maybe. Maybe I am an outlier, a fat cat that likes to consider himself "middle class." Or maybe I just have a boatload of real estate-related deductions.

Using [the most recent IRS data I could find in a 10 second search], it appears as though less than one-third of US personal tax returns utilized itemized deductions. Spun another way, over 2/3 of American tax filers would see a tax decrease under the Romney proposal I partially made up (with the brunt of increases borne in a very progressive manner).

Compare that with letting the Bush tax cuts expire where in potentially everyone could see some tax increase: every single marginal tax rate would increase slightly (including the elimination of the 10% bracket), capital gains rate increases, dividend taxation, etc.
I will say that the biggest tax rate reduction I received in my lifetime was the 2% reduction in social security tax. It also did a fraction of the damage to the federal deficit that the whole of the bush tax cuts did.

If the rate of my household income going to the federal government was the same as mitt's released tax return I'd have somewhere around $25,000 more in my pocket.

Bob

Last edited by bbundy; 08-23-2012 at 11:41 PM.
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:26 AM   #58
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I am not sure I like that picture. Thats a bit anecdotal but then seeing into the future typicaly is.
Not buying that arguement. He clearly understands the difference between state and federal government. He left his state on good footing. Not many Governors can say that, especial ones with just as many democrats in their seats, with a democratic governor...not even Regan had a good as of a record on paper when you consider he raised taxes in CA.

He vows to repeal Obamacare, remove Bernanke, and I'm more a fan of Romney's position (remove benefits, e-verify, larger fence) than Obama's (amnesty, more benefits), among other things.

It's not like Romney is my first choice for President, but I agree with most of his positions and omfg 4 more years of Obama makes me doubt humanity plus I can't really afford him screwing up the ecomony worse so he can make his buddies rich.

Last edited by Braineack; 08-24-2012 at 10:10 AM.
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:28 AM   #59
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If the rate of my household income going to the federal government was the same as mitt's released tax return I'd have somewhere around $25,000 more in my pocket.

Bob

After you donate 3 million to charity right?
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Old 08-24-2012, 10:50 AM   #60
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I will say that the biggest tax rate reduction I received in my lifetime was the 2% reduction in social security tax.
While I actually favored a complete payroll tax holiday, I definitely question the accuracy of your statement in terms of the 2% OASDI reduction being the largest tax rate reduction you have received - but I am assuming we are keeping income relatively constant for that calculation.

That is, getting the 2% OASDI reduction at X income in 2011 can't reasonably be compared to the Bush tax cuts if you were making 0.5X in 2003.

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If the rate of my household income going to the federal government was the same as mitt's released tax return I'd have somewhere around $25,000 more in my pocket.
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After you donate 3 million to charity right?
I'll have to go back to Romney's 1040 and dig through to make it a bit more "apples to apples" and I will incorporate the payroll taxes. But Brain makes a great point: his charitable deductions are not an insignificant part of Romney's relatively low effective Federal income tax rate.

Anyone comparing their effective Federal income tax rate to his should account for the percentage of his income that he donates to charitable causes. I know it's a lot higher than mine, and I like to think I'm fairly generous.
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