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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 16256
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wsurfer wrote:
MAC, I find it hard to believe that you call out the middle class for not paying their fair share.
I worked for 40 years paying my own healthcare, contributing to SSI, and yet managed to pay more in income tax than the most wealthiest of corporations. They have loopholes and departments of tax attorneys that work to reduce their tax burden.
I'm okay to say lower middle class but really the middle to upper middle class pay more than their fair share.

The same loopholes apply to 1% ers, or those than can afford the "tax advice" to reduce their income.

The richest 1% pay an effective federal income tax rate of 24.7%. That is a little more than the 19.3% rate paid by someone making an average of $75,000. And 1 out of 5 millionaires pays a lower rate than someone making $50,000 to $100,000.


Windsurfer--Oh gee, it's been a few years since I dove into the Federal budget--and its not for the faint of heart. The last time I looked in depth, middle class programs--social security, medicare and medicaid, and defense, were the big dogs. Still the same. According to this, https://www.cbpp.org/research/federal-budget/where-do-our-federal-tax-dollars-go

16% of expenditures go to defense, 23% to social security, 25% to medicare, medicaid, CHIP, and marketplace subsidies, 8% to the safety net programs, and 8% to the debt. That is well more than 3/4 of the budget.

I'll stick with the citation I had above--I didn't fact check it. But I would posit that the benefits of these programs go more to the middle class. The very rich rake off benefits in many ways--but there are far fewer of them. The payout for social security is greater per person for the middle class--because they made more money.

One of the common canards is that social security is covered by payments by those who benefit. Not so. Social security is paid out through funds. But that doesn't remotely mean that it is solid on a present worth basis. The Federal government did not create a sinking fund that would generate asset growth that would pay for the benefits from those who paid in. Again, benefits primarily to the middle class. Missing entirely from those who toil in the cash economy.

Now that doesn't mean that I don't support a progressive tax system, I definitely do. But my conclusion, for what it is worth, that since the Reagan era we have been funding benefits for the future generation by an invisible tax--inflation--on the next generations.

Your anecdote is correct as far as it goes. But there are far more in the middle class than the upper class--52% vs 19% according to Pew.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 16256
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Sun Apr 11, 2021 3:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I take Likosky with a grain of salt, but he does make some good points.

Quote:

For over ten years, I have been advancing a distinctive infrastructure bank to move money off the sidelines and into the real economy, now a bank is getting some velocity. So, I want to share this proposal moving forward. My focus is on promoting equity, clean energy, competitiveness, and innovation-driven growth.

I include links to my Cambridge University Press book, New York Times op-eds and a report on the bottom of this note if you would like to know background

This money on the sidelines sits in the accounts of private pensions, government pensions, labor pensions, sovereign governments, sub-sovereigns, endowments, even insurance funds. The common denominator: patient money looking for an inflation adjusted sensible return that syncs up with the long-term obligations including those of retirees.

For decades, we have neglected the foundation of our economy while other countries have invested in state-of-the-art logistics, communications, water, energy, and transportation infrastructure. Our advanced manufacturing base has migrated abroad; our innovation edge may soon follow. If we don’t find a way to build a sound foundation for growth, the American dream will survive only in our heads and history books.

While we have channeled capital into wars and debt, our competitors abroad including China have worked with infrastructure banks to lay a sound foundation for growth. As a result, we must compete not only with their lower labor costs but also with their advanced energy, transportation and information platforms, which are a magnet even for American businesses.

The World Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, the Asian Development Bank and similar institutions helped debt-burdened developing countries to grow through infrastructure investments and laid the foundations for the global high-tech economy.

For instance, these banks literally laid the infrastructure of the Web through a fiber-optic link around the globe. Infrastructure banks retrofitted ports to receive and process shipping containers, which made it profitable to manufacture goods overseas. Similar investments anchored energy-intensive microchip fabrication.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt pursued this approach. For him, it was a way of making federal money pack even more punch alongside the direct-pay WPA, avoiding a double dip Great Depression. Roosevelt created such things as the Tennessee Valley Authority which he described as a “corporation clothed with the power of government but possessed of the flexibility and initiative of private enterprise.”

We even used these banks to fuel our First and Second World War efforts and also had a post-Second World War bank.

My infrastructure bank would not endanger taxpayer money, because under the Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990, passed after the savings and loan scandal, it would have to meet accounting and reporting requirements and limit government liability. It would be prudently managed and owned by and operated for America, not shareholders.

Today we find ourselves trapped in a vicious cycle that makes a bank more urgent than ever. Our degraded infrastructure straitjackets growth.

My bank would extend targeted government loan and loan guarantees, credits, bond and bond enhancement instruments and insurance plans to projects that need a push to get going but can pay for themselves over time — like an energy facility that collects user fees, a port that imposes fees on goods entering or leaving the country, or a broadband service which draws on regular reasonable payments. Importantly, such projects need not pay entirely for themselves, state and local governments or even certain federal agencies can judiciously top up payments.

The Infrastructure Bank would not be duplicative of existing federal programs. For instance, unlike those programs which focus on single infrastructure sectors, the bank would be there for projects with more than one sector involved such as an expanding factory, a science park, an aerotropolis, a semi-conductor facility, a life sciences facility, or a clean energy park which require wastewater, broadband, clean energy, and transportation to attract, grow, and sustain businesses.

Our national security depends upon a world-class equitable domestic economic infrastructure. For Lincoln, it was the transcontinental railroad; for F.D.R., an industrial platform to support military manufacturing; for Eisenhower, an interstate highway system, originally conceived to ease the transport of munitions. America’s ability to project strength, to rebuild and transform its battered economy and to advance its values is possible only if we possess modern infrastructure.


Publications on Infrastructure Bank

New York Times (2015)
“Taxpayers Benefit If Investors Absorb Risks of Infrastructure Projects”
https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.nytimes.com_roomfordebate_2015_04_08_does-2Dthe-2Dpublic-2Dbenefit-2Dfrom-2Dprivate-2Dinfrastructure-2Dinvestment_taxpayers-2Dbenefit-2Dif-2Dinvestors-2Dabsorb-2Drisks-2Dof-2Dinfrastructure-2Dprojects&d=DwIFaQ&c=euGZstcaTDllvimEN8b7jXrwqOf-v5A_CdpgnVfiiMM&r=WsyGoUmeYwcQsIWe5oKGTUyDaVDexCupsfQ6ks2roz337bZxz7WmefW-Uu2UKWRu&m=90wmfLlV_8_K9c7MhUxNtFBg_4sOcF8SbDasBH8keco&s=Wgp2yvxSos89SH1dt7WXN28OltuOCbapsdXoO0sr1OM&e=

New York Times (2013)
“A National Bank With One Goal, Infrastructure”
https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.nytimes.com_roomfordebate_2013_10_01_should-2Dstates-2Doperate-2Dpublic-2Dbanks_a-2Dnational-2Dbank-2Dwith-2Done-2Dgoal-2Dinfrastructure&d=DwIFaQ&c=euGZstcaTDllvimEN8b7jXrwqOf-v5A_CdpgnVfiiMM&r=WsyGoUmeYwcQsIWe5oKGTUyDaVDexCupsfQ6ks2roz337bZxz7WmefW-Uu2UKWRu&m=90wmfLlV_8_K9c7MhUxNtFBg_4sOcF8SbDasBH8keco&s=7BVQ5-VmYGkoeGhqVfGVJ8H3x2lcYUCxiXVzYV3udo4&e=

New York Times (2011)
Banking on the Future
https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.nytimes.com_2011_07_13_opinion_13likosky.html&d=DwIFaQ&c=euGZstcaTDllvimEN8b7jXrwqOf-v5A_CdpgnVfiiMM&r=WsyGoUmeYwcQsIWe5oKGTUyDaVDexCupsfQ6ks2roz337bZxz7WmefW-Uu2UKWRu&m=90wmfLlV_8_K9c7MhUxNtFBg_4sOcF8SbDasBH8keco&s=UV2svU1i3ys4j450sA9E9ZoKRo0-cc07bNV_w7pyS1A&e=

Obama’s Bank: Financing a Durable New Deal (2010)
Cambridge University Press
https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.cambridge.org_core_books_obamas-2Dbank_BB32636BA6E8C6456E05B2929ADE2837&d=DwIFaQ&c=euGZstcaTDllvimEN8b7jXrwqOf-v5A_CdpgnVfiiMM&r=WsyGoUmeYwcQsIWe5oKGTUyDaVDexCupsfQ6ks2roz337bZxz7WmefW-Uu2UKWRu&m=90wmfLlV_8_K9c7MhUxNtFBg_4sOcF8SbDasBH8keco&s=MPpU2iff822bkkvT-JzPaMLvZTT9xo0bf3NmMR9ZC3g&e=

Social Science Research Council (2011)
“Report: Rethinking 21st Century Government: Public-Private Partnerships and the National Infrastructure Bank”
https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__www.ssrc.org_publications_view_rethinking-2D21st-2Dcentury-2Dgovernment-2Dpublic-2Dprivate-2Dpartnerships-2Dand-2Dthe-2Dnational-2Dinfrastructure-2Dbank_&d=DwIFaQ&c=euGZstcaTDllvimEN8b7jXrwqOf-v5A_CdpgnVfiiMM&r=WsyGoUmeYwcQsIWe5oKGTUyDaVDexCupsfQ6ks2roz337bZxz7WmefW-Uu2UKWRu&m=90wmfLlV_8_K9c7MhUxNtFBg_4sOcF8SbDasBH8keco&s=pXRPiw6SUSBwPuU_4PEN7Hq2Yu6_mC-flpS3b9UrnLw&e=


Please do be in touch with thoughts and to discuss,
Michael



BIO
Michael holds a doctorate in Law from Oxford University. He is a partner at Advantage Infrastructure Advisors, and has worked on infrastructure, inclusive of energy, high technology, advanced manufacturing, life sciences and economic growth for twenty years from a number of perches including as an expert and advisor, both domestically and transnationally
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 20128

PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And now Buttigieg has had to retract his Biden plan job creation number from 19 M to 2.7 M. He had overstated it by 600%.
Source: Buttigieg

Sheeesh.

As for the rest of the "infrastructure" plan, here is what it boasts of achieving for the American people. From
https://smartasset.com/financial-advisor/biden-infrastructure-plan :

Let’s take a look at eight ways the American Jobs Plan will impact you the most:

You will save time on your commute.

Veterans will get better healthcare services.

More childcare facilities for working families.

The government will pay you to buy an electric car.

Tech will become more diverse.

More home care for the elderly and disabled.

You will have faster and cheaper internet.

More pathways to good-paying jobs.


Roads and bridges, commonly called infrastructure, comprise 115B of that 2.3T ... 5.000 %. The rest is progressive semantics, aka political bullshit. Even if one tries to expand ... i.e., rewrite ... the definition of "infrastructure", the figure is still just 10-20%.

"It depends on what the meaning of the word, "is" is. "


Last edited by isobars on Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:33 am; edited 1 time in total
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 16256
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can you tell he didn't peek? Or think?
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 16256
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Image without a caption
Opinion by
Jennifer Rubin
Columnist
April 16, 2021 at 4:45 a.m. PDT

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A lot of good economic news emerged this week. The Post reports: “First-time unemployment claims fell sharply last week to a pandemic low of 576,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday. That’s down 193,000 from the preceding week’s surprise spike, an unexpectedly strong showing even as unemployment remains elevated.” On top of that, “retail sales soared 9.8 percent in March as stimulus checks hit bank accounts, business restrictions loosened and spring weather arrived. The better-than-expected jump comes on the heels of a 2.7 percent decline in February.” In other words, after President Biden and the Democrats pump more money into consumers hands, unemployment declines and consumer spending rebounds. Gosh, could economic results translate into political popularity?

It sure looks that way. A raft of polls, including the latest survey from the Pew Research Center, suggests Biden’s rescue plan was pretty much a home run. Meanwhile, unanimous Republican opposition to the plan looks like political malpractice.

The Pew poll finds that a stunning 72 percent of Americans, including 55 percent of Republicans, say “the Biden administration has done an excellent or good job managing the manufacture and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to Americans.” (The poll was completed before distribution of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine was paused.)
Quote:
Asked specifically about the rescue plan, a supermajority (67 percent) approve while only 32 percent disapprove. Republicans, it seems, are wildly out of touch with voters. Overall Biden’s approval rating has ticked up five points since March to 59 percent; only 39 percent disapprove.


Trump never made it over 49%.
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 8587
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2021 1:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Competent , calm leadership. .......exhale.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 16256
Location: Berkeley, California

PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2021 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Remember buggy whip claiming he was a doddering fool? Laughing Laughing Laughing
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boggsman1



Joined: 24 Jun 2002
Posts: 8587
Location: at a computer

PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2021 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As a baseball junkie, I compare a good president to a good manager. Keeps the ship heading in the right direction, but doesn't need to get credit, or the limelight. Joe is just that.
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