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Why I'm Voting for Ron Paul in 08

Discussion in 'Alley of Lingering Sighs' started by Phone_Tools, Sep 11, 2007.

  1. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    No more so than any other religion and politics. Mitt Romney is hardly the only Mormon in politics. Mitt Romney's father, for example, was the governor of Michigan until 1995. In Utah and the states surrounding it, the majority of politicians (both democrat and republican) are Mormon.
     
  2. Dinsdale Gems: 13/31
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    @AMaster - So you don't like Libertariarianism or Right Wing Authoritarianism, eh? Do you advocate Left Wing Authoritarianism then? :p
     
  3. AMaster Gems: 26/31
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    If you want to call it that.

    What I advocate is tempering the free market with governmental controls. I also contend that societies have a moral duty to provide their citizens with things such as food, shelter, and healthcare.

    If providing those requires the redistribution of wealth, well, I couldn't care less. Maximizing economic growth is a means to an end, not an end in itself.
     
  4. Montresor

    Montresor Mostly Harmless Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder

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    Seeing the kind of people who are routinely elected to government on promises of redistributing wealth from those who create it to those who (expect to) vote themselves to it, but in reality redistribute wealth to those with political connections, I can think of no worse agent to redistribute wealth than "government".

    And the producers of food, shelter and healthcare are the ones who provide it, not politicians and bureaucrats.
     
  5. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    You are playing semantics. What Amaster is arguing is that government has a duty to make sure everyone is fed, cared for, and sheltered....using methods like price controls when necessary, farm subsidies or tax incentives when necessary, socialized medicine or single-payer health insurance, income-based food assistance programs, etc. Disagree with it if you must, but let's not go mis-characterizing his arguments, either.
     
  6. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    I heard of a Bishop once who had a hard time keeping a straight face when asking a Politician or a lawyer if they were honest in their Dealings...
     
  7. LKD Gems: 31/31
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    Amen to that. I also would like to add that I believe the government has a responsibility to level the playing field, but in so doing they should simply try to make sure all people have opportunities for success. My expectation is that people still are responsible, where the rubber meets the road, to take actions that will help themselves.

    I re-read Paul's website -- it looks to me like he would expect people to take personal responsibilty while safeguarding their rights. That is, IF he followed through on what he writes.
     
  8. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    Just a quick reminder that our current taxation systems gives more tax breaks to the wealthy than you think. How many wealthy folks have you get who earn most of their money in the form of income, anyway? Most of their incomes come from capital gains....which Bush cut. Drastically. Our graduated taxation system coupled with sensible taxes on capital gains and an estate tax* creates a much more even playing field than the current system.

    * Contrary to what you may have heard, neither the New York Times or even the American Farm Bureau Federation could find a single family that lost its farm to the estate tax(when GW took office the tax exempted farmland up to $2.6 million and a grace period of up to 14 years to pay the tax bill at low interest rates). Further, arguments that the estate tax is unfair because it taxes money twice are intellectually dishonest. Aside from the fact that we pay double taxes all the time (sales tax,licensing fees, bridge tolls, excise taxes, car registration, gasoline, tobacco, alcohol.....), since most of the value of an estate comes in the form of unrealized capital gains, the estate tax is actually taxing money that's never been taxed at all (and never will be with a repeal of the estate tax).
     
  9. AMaster Gems: 26/31
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    The whole point of the estate tax was to prevent the ossification of a pseudo-aristocratic class.

    Not that it was incredibly successful in that regard, but it beats the crap out of nothing.
     
  10. Darkwolf Gems: 18/31
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    The difference is that every tax you list is a voluntary tax, you technically don't have to pay them if you don't want to (though you would have to make lifestyle changes). It is a technicality, but it is an important technicality. You don't have a choice when it comes to paying the estate tax, the Gov't will come and take it from you by force if necessary. Of course one could claim that income tax is partially voluntary for the rich, as they can offshore much of their wealth and avoid paying income tax on a large portion of their earnings (as they are doing) but do we really want to encourage wealthy people to invest overseas?

    I am still undecided on who I will vote for, but it will be difficult to jump on the Ron Paul bandwagon as he does not support tax reform, instead believing that spending reform is the way to go. Unfortunately the gov't is like most people, and it spends all it makes (plus more), so the way to reign it in is to limit its ability to collect revenue. Secondarily we need a tax system that promotes growth and keeps capital in the country, which is exactly the opposite of what our current system does. I will at some point have to decide if the positions that he holds that I support outweigh the positions that I oppose.

    As far as sidebar about the Gov't "redistributing" wealth, this is nothing more than 2 wolves and a sheep voting on what is for dinner. People need to stop thinking of how to cut the pie into smaller pieces and start thinking of how to bake a bigger pie. Allowing the Gov't to actively participate in wealth redistribution is another step down the road to tyranny. No person can claim to have freedom and liberty without having the right to the ownership of property absent fear of arbitrary Gov't seizure.

    An interesting study is to look at the parallel arguemnts of the retraction of right for safety in the face of an imminent danger (read war or terrorism) vs. the retraction of rights for "the greater good of society" in establishment of welfare programs. It is apparent (though not necessarily true) that in both cases the safety and welfare of the general public is increased, but people will take opposing positions on the issue based upon their agenda. Being willing to give up rights for one but not the other seems hypocritical to me, but then I am just a raving right wing nutcase. Now is time for the relativists to jump in! :banana:
     
  11. AMaster Gems: 26/31
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    Ah, yes. Relativism.

    EDIT: ^Richard Rorty. Though I'm not too fond of the dichotomy at the end, he certainly does a good job of destroying the 'relativism' canard.

    Oh, hell. In for a penny, in for a pound.

    They'll do it without encouragement (American became a net exporter of capital in 1905, well before the 16th amendment. That, and profit margins are larger when you use sweatshops.

    In order to keep capital in country you need to do all sorts of things that will never be done. Even if they were done, there's a fair chance you'd see the sort of widespread labor unrest that was endemic from the 1800s through the early part of the twentieth century.

    A: Welfare and economic growth are not mutually exclusive.
    B: The government already redistributes wealth.
    C: Human life, in my view, has a greater ethical value than does the sanctity of property. It is perfectly acceptable to compromise the latter in order to serve the former. You may disagree, of course.

    Not parallel at all. I don't accept that property is a foundational right, therefore the redistribution of wealth does not violate any foundational rights.

    Further, it is a question of necessity. Without governmental intervention, 47 millions of Americans will lack health insurance, and therefore will lack access to anything approaching adequate health care. I regard health care as a necessity, therefore government must intervene to provide it.

    In contrast, the PATRIOT Act, or NSA wiretapping, or Gitmo, or black prisons, or rendition, or whatever, are not necessary to combat terrorism. Therefore they represent an unacceptable infringement on existing rights.

    I don't see why that could be hypocritical, but perhaps you will provide a convincing argument.

    [ September 19, 2007, 22:50: Message edited by: AMaster ]
     
  12. Gnarfflinger

    Gnarfflinger Wiseguy in Training

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    From the Interview I saw with Ron Paul on the Colbert Report, It sounds like Ron Paul wants to take a closer look at how the money is spent, and make a better quality of pie...
     
  13. ChickenIsGood Gems: 23/31
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    I'm probably not going to vote for him for the sole reason of him-who-was-campaigning-for-him in our burg... He's a kid who if you walk in his house you're bound to step on three different kind of pipes each step... and was caught with mundo LSD.
     
  14. Montresor

    Montresor Mostly Harmless Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder

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    Which means, you have the right to confiscate the property of one person in order to improve the life of another, serving "The Common Good".

    Which is exactly what George W. Bush believes. You just disagree on what constitutes "Common Good". At this point in time, Bush's view prevails because he is President of the United States.

    I think you will find that if you no longer respect property rights, your country will suffer economically, which will tend to make everybody's life shorter and less comfortable. As such, there is no immediate conflict between property rights and the right to life - rather they are synonymous.
     
  15. Drew

    Drew Arrogant, contemptible, and obnoxious Adored Veteran

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    Not really. You see, if we allow the rich/poor divide to expand far enough out of respect for the rich's "property rights", poor people will start dying due to inadequate access to food, medicine and, yes.....even housing. Respecting someones right to property is not the same thing as respecting someones right to own 6 mansions and waste enough energy, water, and other resources to rival Zimbabwe.
     
  16. Montresor

    Montresor Mostly Harmless Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder

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    Zimbabwe is a pretty good example of what happens when the government decides to "redistribute" wealth by seizing the property of rich farmers who know how to farm and give it to poor people who don't know how to farm. The end result is a smaller rich/poor divide and universal poverty (with the possible exception of government and their friends).

    The size of the rich/poor divide matters less than how rich the most poor people are. You can't make everybody equally rich, but you can make them equally poor.
     
  17. The Great Snook Gems: 31/31
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    I like this quote. I'm sure there are plenty of poor people in the world that would gladly trade places to be poor in the U.S.
     
  18. LKD Gems: 31/31
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    In addition to what's been said, I don't think many people have a problem with providing basic services to those in need. What I find unnacceptable is the idea of the government taking my wealth from me and giving it to those who do not work, and then those people proceed to enjoy a BETTER quality of life than I do, all off the government tittie. It's that incredible unfairness and overly aggressive government redistribution of wealth that makes Paul's rhetoric so palatable to the middle class.

    Whether he would follow through is another question . . . . election promises are like pie crusts . . .
     
  19. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    "It's that incredible unfairness and overly aggressive government redistribution of wealth that makes Paul's rhetoric so palatable to the middle class"

    Strangely enough, among developed countries, the USA - and to a lesser degree, Canada and the UK - are among the countries where the government is least invasive in this regard, and yet this seems to be the biggest issue among people of those countries imo. I wonder what the guys from the Benelux or Scandinavia think on the matter. Still, I can agree with some of this in theory - having a better quality of life on welfare than someone who works full-time is an abuse of the system. That doesn't mean that the entire system is wrong, though - just that it's not working as well as it could and should be.

    By the way, saying that human life is more important than the sanctity of property is VERY different than support for collectivization or redistribution. There is such a thing as degrees, after all - just like not every tax increase will automatically and definitely lead to an economical crisis. Mind you, in the 1920's an agrarian government in Bulgaria enforced a land redistribution, within limited boundaries - and the results weren't that bad.

    [ September 20, 2007, 23:14: Message edited by: The Shaman ]
     
  20. AMaster Gems: 26/31
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    Monty, welfare in the US has existed since the days of FDR. The US economy has grown by leaps and bounds since then. Obviously, redistribution of wealth and economic growth are not mutually exclusive.

    As Shaman says, there is such a thing as degree.
     
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