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Daily CE Musings of Piob - Page 36

post #526 of 5110
Thread Starter 
http://money.cnn.com/2014/02/14/investing/tom-perkins-vote/index.html?hpt=hp_t1

Tom Perkins seems to have developed the type of insanity only the super-wealthy can develop however he has raised an interesting topic. I have often refused to accept at face value the concept of one person, one vote. Perkins might have a poorly articulated plan but really what is intrinsically wrong with at least considering some sort of voting based upon some other than merely being alive, being 18, and being a citizen?
post #527 of 5110
What would be the qualifications then? $$$ = votes is pretty obviously flawed unless we want a formally enshrined oligarchy.

Part of the problem is that political involvement is a way to remind the masses that they're involved in "their" country and government. People are disillusioned enough right now, when they actually have a vote. Take that away (even from people who never bother to vote now) and they'll perceive their only way of influencing the system is rioting. People checking out of society is bad for stability and for business.
post #528 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibonius View Post

What would be the qualifications then? $$$ = votes is pretty obviously flawed unless we want a formally enshrined oligarchy.

Part of the problem is that political involvement is a way to remind the masses that they're involved in "their" country and government. People are disillusioned enough right now, when they actually have a vote. Take that away (even from people who never bother to vote now) and they'll perceive their only way of influencing the system is rioting. People checking out of society is bad for stability and for business.

As a Hamiltonian, I think this is exactly what we need. A steady, learned hand on the wheel..
post #529 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Connemara View Post

As a Hamiltonian, I think this is exactly what we need. A steady, learned hand on the wheel..

post #530 of 5110
As a Jeffersonian, I think a crushing estate tax is exactly what we need. It would go farther toward addressing income inequality and the American aristocracy than any proposal I've seen yet.

I'm not certain to what degree I'm kidding.
post #531 of 5110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gibonius View Post

What would be the qualifications then? $$$ = votes is pretty obviously flawed unless we want a formally enshrined oligarchy.

Part of the problem is that political involvement is a way to remind the masses that they're involved in "their" country and government. People are disillusioned enough right now, when they actually have a vote. Take that away (even from people who never bother to vote now) and they'll perceive their only way of influencing the system is rioting. People checking out of society is bad for stability and for business.

It does not have to be a take away. Make one vote the default for being 18, alive (unless you live in Chicagoland and then we waive that requirement), and a citizen. From there decide how to add additional votes.
post #532 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrG View Post

As a Jeffersonian, I think a crushing estate tax is exactly what we need. It would go farther toward addressing income inequality and the American aristocracy than any proposal I've seen yet.

I'm not certain to what degree I'm kidding.

What income inequality? You mean the income inequality that is already shrinking? Or the income inequality that leads to two thirds of kids born in the top 20% to move to a lower quintile within thirty years?

http://obs.rc.fas.harvard.edu/chetty/mobility_geo.pdf
post #533 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrG View Post

As a Jeffersonian, I think a crushing estate tax is exactly what we need. It would go farther toward addressing income inequality and the American aristocracy than any proposal I've seen yet.

I'm not certain to what degree I'm kidding.

Jefferson would never advocate an estate tax. He was a product and a champion of the landed gentry, contrary to what the popular interpretation is today.
post #534 of 5110
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrG View Post

As a Jeffersonian, I think a crushing estate tax is exactly what we need. It would go farther toward addressing income inequality and the American aristocracy than any proposal I've seen yet.

I'm not certain to what degree I'm kidding.

I think Jefferson would believe we have one. I know liberals (not saying you're one of them!) like to point to Jefferson and say, "SEE! YOU TEABAGGERS! A revered Founding Father wanted wealth to never be inherited!11!!!"

I think that's a very shallow reading of Jefferson's views and one that lacks context. He was a staunch foe of primogeniture and entail. I do not think given the context being against those two things is saying that all material fortunes must be confiscated upon death. Inheritance laws implied completely different things to people emerging from a semi-feudal society than they do to us. I would say this applies to passage oft quoted by liberals of Adam Smith too. (This is the type of convo I wish Manton were still here to take part in. ) Here's the relevant quote from Smith:
Quote:
The question Whether one generation of men has a right to bind another, seems never to have been started either on this or our side of the water. Yet it is a question of such consequences as not only to merit decision, but place also, among the fundamental principles of every government. The course of reflection in which we are immersed here on the elementary principles of society has presented this question to my mind; and that no such obligation can be transmitted I think very capable of proof. I set out on this ground which I suppose to be self evident, "that the earth belongs in usufruct* to the living;" that the dead have neither powers nor rights over it.

Could just be my unenlightened view (SWIDT?) but I think the bolded indicates he is speaking of entail.
post #535 of 5110
Guys, I wasn't joking when I said I was at least partially kidding.

I agree that Jefferson wouldn't have advocated a "crushing" estate tax. That was part of the post that was supposed to indicate I was being glib. I think Piob's assessment is correct - Jefferson was very, very concerned about the rise of an aristocracy and the role inheritance would play in it, but pretending he would advocated for the confiscation of all worldly goods upon death is, at best, an interpretation utterly lacking in nuance.

I do, however, think the question of how we should address the intergenerational transfer of wealth is an interesting conversation to have, and it's one that isn't given its due by either side. It's also a fun exercise to consider Jefferson's (theoretical) position on all of it.

Also, brokencycle doesn't seem to see a distinction between "inequality" and "mobility."
post #536 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrG View Post

Guys, I wasn't joking when I said I was at least partially kidding.

I agree that Jefferson wouldn't have advocated a "crushing" estate tax. That was part of the post that was supposed to indicate I was being glib. I think Piob's assessment is correct - Jefferson was very, very concerned about the rise of an aristocracy and the role inheritance would play in it, but pretending he would advocated for the confiscation of all worldly goods upon death is, at best, an interpretation utterly lacking in nuance.

I do, however, think the question of how we should address the intergenerational transfer of wealth is an interesting conversation to have, and it's one that isn't given its due by either side. It's also a fun exercise to consider Jefferson's (theoretical) position on all of it.

Also, brokencycle doesn't seem to see a distinction between "inequality" and "mobility."

Income inequality is shrinking according to the latest findings, but even if we assume that income inequality is bad and/or increasing, wouldn't the fact that there is real income mobility make that issue moot?
post #537 of 5110
As an anarchist I reject all authority whether imposed by my betters or my fellow citizens. Fuck everybody.
post #538 of 5110
Thread Starter 
In a move that quite surprised me the workers at the Tenn. VW plant rejected having the UWA come in an unionize them. Not sure what to make of this.
post #539 of 5110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Piobaire View Post

In a move that quite surprised me the workers at the Tenn. VW plant rejected having the UWA come in an unionize them. Not sure what to make of this.

Score one for 'Merica.
Take that Marx!
post #540 of 5110
At least once every couple weeks the local NPR station runs a story about how "the workers" at the local auto plant are trying to unionize. Oddly enough, nothing ever comes of it.

It's just infuriating that my tax money is used to pay for this shit.
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