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      02-09-2008, 05:58 PM   #158
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Originally Posted by ArtPE View Post
for every person who says the debt is bad, you'll find on who says it doesn't matter...

depends on what is was used for:
needless war, bad
overblown defense budget (>1/2 of the discretionary spending), bad
tax cuts for the wealthiest, bad
healthcare, good
infrastructure, good

and even these are open to debate...they are all opinions, not facts, and can never be proven/validated

one thing for sure, the bill will become due some day
Absolutely! These are all a matter of opinion. It's interesting to see - and I'll take one of these on - that you state:

"tax cuts for the wealthiest, bad"

While I *emotionally* agree w/ you, as a professional economist I can't agree w/ this statement - much as I desire to! For one: the top 1% (so let's assume this percentile equates to "wealthy") pay more taxes as a % / GDP than was the case in the 1960s for e.g. when Kennedy lowered the top marginal tax rate.

For another: from a macro perspective one can well argue that lower tax rates at the top marginal rates are more stimulative to the economy than an equal % cut at the lower levels. Why? Due to behavior (tax shelters and investment potential).

I'm not a registered Republican so when I weigh in on this it's purely from my macro perspective, not the ideological on this issue. I can PM you a decent review of some tax issues in an op ed.

One last point: the Labor govt (in many ways left of the Dems' platform here) in Australia did the following:
(1) removed fully the dividend tax ("double taxation")
(2) lowered the top marginal rates
(3) lowered corporate tax rates
(4) no estate taxes
(5) lowered cap gains' tax

And the Aussie economy boomed and govt runs a surplus. The conservative govt inherited this mandate - and my nephew is now highly involved in the new Treasury Dept.'s policy there (recently back to Labor rule), is a Labor party voter, and he says they are not considering repealing (1) - (5).

As far as the "bill coming due" goes: As long as we have open markets, discrete property rights, democratic processes, and foreigners can earn a RoC > their CoC, then they will have no problems w/ meeting our capital requirements. It makes too much sense to them. Whether we *want* to sell our assets or take on more debt is another matter... for we do have to pay them their RoC.

Just thinking of something not so witty
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Last edited by Voltigeur; 02-09-2008 at 11:59 PM.