Martin Ling wrote:
> On Mon, May 22, 2000 at 08:19:21AM -0700, James Rogers wrote:
> > On Mon, 22 May 2000, Martin Ling wrote:
> > >
> > > Since when exactly was the level of taxation directly inversely
> > > proportional to how 'free' a country is? Unless one is arguing for a
> > > system of no taxation and public services at all, the specifics seem
> > > somewhat irrelevant.
> > The specifics are entirely relevant. First, the amount of taxation
> > essentially determines how much of your labor is slave labor (adjusted for
> > rate of return, but that typically is pretty damn low). Second, taxation
> > that is tied more closely to service usage is more fair than taxation
> > based on other arbitrary metrics.
> [snip long, but very good example of (non)efficient tax usage]
> I was ambiguous. What I think I meant is that the specifics in terms of
> the percentile figures for taxation are not much use with no
> consideration of how that money is being used (which can be well or
> badly, as you say).
> Once you've decided to allow for some taxation, however (as opposed to
> none at all, as Mike has suggested - and it is a vaild option) it makes
> very little sense to try and compare exactly how much freedom a country
> has removed, via its taxes. There are simply far too many factors.
Well, the fact is that Charlie is enslaved 40% of the time, while I am
enslaved less than 16% of the time. Which of us is more free? Saying
that the money stolen from Charlie by his masters is spent on his well
being and other fun fun goodies is really irrelevant, because you don't
know if Charlie actually wants everything the government is buying with
his money and is telling him he needs. Considering that government
generally wastes half of what it steals from its citizens, while money
spent by citizens generates money in the economy, not only is it a
benefit to leave it in my hands on a direct one for one basis, but also
indirectly the extra growth in the economy not only increases eveyrone's
income, but total taxes. Taxes here in the US are generally the lowest
they've been for most people for a number of decades, at least on income
tax. Other taxes have creeped up there, though, as I recall, last year
was the first year that the Tax Freedom Day was earlier in the year than
the previous year.
If the money a government takes from you is used in purchasing decisions
you have no say in, then you have lost that freedom. If you could have
used that money to attain greater financial security for yourself, there
is more freedom that you've lost. Every tax dollar is a confiscated
choice. It does not matter if its spent on guns or butter. If the choice
is not in the hands of the citizen, then it is a lost freedom.
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