Rich Americans Need Your Help

Special Guest Blog/ Exclusive to The Big Picture Report

A Plea For Your Help, From People for the Ethical Treatment of Rich Americans

by List of X/ December 30, 2012

 

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Every day, the nation is creeping closer and closer toward the so-called fiscal cliff.  Going over the cliff will mean, among other things, that the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 will expire and marginal tax rates will rise for everyone, including the top 1% of earners.  Since keeping the low tax rates on the top 1% isn’t very popular with most Americans but favored among the Republican Party leadership, the GOP had recently formed PETRA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Rich Americans), to help advance their case for protecting the tax cuts for the top 1%.  Today, PETRA has released the following statement:

We realize that our name may appear similar to PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), but our organizations are very different.  Unlike PETA, which  tries to protect all kinds of useless vermin, our organization’s mission consists of protecting just one very important and highly unique species, known to all of us as ‘Rich Americans.”

People sometimes think of Rich Americans as predators and parasites who only hurt others, but this is a misguided perception.  Rich Americans (Latin name Affluentis Americanis Jobcreatorius) serve a crucial role in a society by ridding it of its weaker and less useful members, and thus make the society stronger.  They accumulate excessive wealth from the rest of the nation, thus preventing inflation, and their wealth discharges (also known as “trickle-down”) provide rich nutrients to everyone near the bottom of the food chain. These trickle-downs help support millions of Regular Americans (Latin: Lazyus Moocherus Vulgaris). Finally, Rich Americans provide evolutionary inspiration to all other American species, and their flamboyant mating rituals (think Donald Trump or Kim Kardashian) are among the most awe-inspiring wonders of Nature.

Bush-era environmental and economic policies saw the population of Rich Americans increase to healthy levels.  President George W. Bush signed multiple laws aimed at protection of Rich Americans, preserving and expanding their natural habitats such as offshore tax havens, capital gains taxes, and carried interest loopholes.  However, several natural disasters, such as the housing crisis and financial collapse (for which Rich Americans were absolutely not responsible) resulted in the drop of their population to dangerously low levels. In the last couple of years their population had started to rebound again, but the improvement had been markedly slow.

Today, their way of life is under serious threat from the thoughtless actions of the Obama administration. As our nation approaches the fiscal cliff, all the conservation efforts instituted by the Bush administration will be reversed. Even if the nation’s tax collectors harvest just 4% more in taxes from the Rich Americans than they do now, it will have on profound effect on the behavior of Rich Americans.  They will become less active and their wealth discharges will become less frequent. And worst of all, they may migrate to more hospitable climates, and that will throw the entire American econ-system off-balance.

Please write, call, and e-mail your Congress representative and demand that they do everything in their power to keep the laws protecting the Rich Americans.  Act now!  Remember, destruction of natural habitats of Rich Americans is harmful to all of us.

List of X specializes in, well…lists of 10. His entertaining website is on the BPR blogroll.
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506 Responses to Rich Americans Need Your Help

  1. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that there is a difference between people who may inherit a certain level of money, however, they want to earn as much of their wealth as possible as a result of their hard work and people whose wealth is based solely on inheritance instead of wanting to work for what they earn. Here are 3 questions for you: 1: What if someone inherits a family business, regardless of its size, without any physical money going to that person? 2: Even if what he said may have had merit to it to some extent when he said it, would it not be reasonable to believe that Barack Obama’s statement about people not building their businesses is incorrect in other regards? 3: Even though you said that the rich have more than enough money, that some people have obscene amounts, what if someone’s wealth was accumulated through hard work and sensible investments, not just inheritance?

  2. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, a lot of people want things both ways. Many people want free college without doing anything to earn it and yet decry people whose wealth as being inherited as having done nothing to earn it. If one family does have to pay an estate tax, any people who want to go to college should pay for the college. If someone wants free college, then the people who inherit wealth should get it all tax-free. You said I can’t have it both ways, however, a lot of people want things both ways.

  3. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people should vote with their money. Cutting all nonessential expenditures from the family budget would definitely go a long way. Phone plans are a good example. There are multiple options to save money. If a family has an inexpensive cellphone plan, assuming that they are in an area where the coverage is good, they could ditch the landlines altogether. You claim that the people on the Right want to blame poor people for our problems. That is unfair. While it is true that poor people do benefit from welfare programs intended to help them, there is the double-edged sword factor. It helps them but it also ensnares them into a state of perpetual dependency. We also have people who engage in welfare fraud, such as the family of Keely Mullen. She was not going on live TV to make points about how expensive college tuition is, just using that as an excuse to demand free stuff. Based on what I read, she comes from a wealthy family, so she was just looking for a handout, using the “injustice” of a system that requires one to be accountable for one’s own path in life as an excuse to be lazy. Her family was never on welfare, so she lied. This is the problem with people who want free stuff. All they want is to party and want stuff given to them. Leftists can’t even see their own double-standards and/or hypocrisy when they decry people who inherit wealth free of tax as being leeches or moochers and essentially look the other way when some people actually want free stuff.

  4. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, things like savings should be encouraged. If some people would just plan accordingly, they could find numerous ways to save money. First and foremost, cutting nonessential spending from the family budget. People could save a lot of money on food over the long-term by having a garden with a variety of fruits, vegetables and herbs. Get all of the seeds one wants and then a garden could be developed. They could save money on phone bills by ditching landlines and having a cellphone that they could renew on an as needed basis. Just because some people refuse to plan accordingly does not automatically entitle them to the right to take money from other people to pay for the wants and needs of these people. in order to satisfy the demands of people for a handout. People who issue demands for free stuff are the perfect example of people want to get a handout and they act like they are victims when the rich do not bow to their demands. Personally, while I did not take too well the 47% comment that Mitt Romney made at the time he made it, one thing he did speak to was the entitlement mentality that some people seem to have to things that they did nothing to deserve. Self-made multimillionaires don’t owe anybody anything. They worked for their wealth, so they should reap the rewards of their labor, as well as their family members by extension. What entitles someone to go to college and have them not pick up the tab?

  5. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I will not deny the fact that some people got rich due to the help of other people along the way. Having said that, if someone starts out with an idea that leads to the creation of a business that earns millions of dollars, that person should be able to reap the rewards, as well as the people who the business owner(s) would employ. Barack Obama had implied that people who have businesses did not build them, that somebody else made that happen. The only way that statement would be credible is if one branch of a family built a business and passed it down to the next. Otherwise, it is a b.s. statement that essentially devalues the time and effort that people put in to create a business.

  6. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the difference between someone giving money to another person based on a voluntary financial transaction or as a gift and someone who wants free stuff is that the person who wants free stuff always wants other people to pick up the tab and the person who gifts money to other people does it at the giver’s own expense. One thing that Leftists do is confuse voluntary exchanges with that which is taken by force. To employ hyperbole, they put guns to people’s heads, figuratively or literally, to get people to pay for the stuff that they want, such as the wants of some people to go to college and not pick up the tab themselves and whine and complain when they don’t get things their way. Leftists are like children who beat their hands on the floor when they don’t get their way and when they finally do get their way, they use the same tactics. No person has any right to demand that other people pay for that person’s stuff, period.

  7. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even if people who inherit wealth are getting welfare, that welfare is being provided by the giver(s,) not the government. The foundation of a strong country begins with strong families and America is founded on parents who love their children and work hard for them. I don’t care how much money someone has, so I cannot support stealing money from dead people. They earned it, so their descendants should be able to keep it. “But wait, the descendants did nothing to earn it,” will be a claim that some people make. People who want free college did nothing to earn it either. The only difference and the distinction to be made is that people who are at death’s doorstep are thinking about wanting to provide for their family members, while people who issue demands for free college have done nothing to deserve it and are just thinking about themselves and not considering the ultimate costs that other people incur in the attempt to satisfy their demands for free stuff. If some people turn down inheritance and insist on becoming wealthy due to their own merits, that is on them. There are people who work hard and do have a hard time making ends meet, so they should be paid attention to. People who become rich and their family members who benefit from that wealth should be left alone. The best people to tax are the rich, however, subjecting a grieving family to a tax burden just rubs me the wrong way. Deceased people have already paid their taxes, so they should not have to go to their graves with the knowledge that the money that they leave to people will be taken and redistributed to people who do nothing useful with their lives.

    If some people are concerned about money issues, something that could be done is negotiating the prices of certain things or taking one’s business to other companies. This victim mentality that some people have because other people will not bow to their demands is absurd. When Mitt Romney made his 47% comment, that did rub me the wrong way, however, the part about some people having an entitlement mentality did hold true. If someone accumulated $7, 000, 000.00 in after-tax savings, that wealth had already been taxed, so why tax it again and redistribute it to other people? The promises of free college are just empty talking points designed to dupe people into voting for the politicians who make all of these promises.

  8. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, some politicians have proposed a wealth tax on the mega rich. I am admittedly inclined to view that as double taxation. State, local and federal taxes take a bite out of a lot of people’s checks at tax time. The problem ultimately boils down to a lack of accountability. Had Barack Obama said that he would make our government open and transparent and kept that promise, I probably would still have vehement disagreements with his perspective on the tax issue, however, his honesty would not have been questioned if there was greater transparency. Here is an example of what I mean: If he had said that he and some members of Congress were going to advocate raising taxes on the rich, however, he would also fight to make sure that there was more fiscal responsibility along the way and there would be controlled spending, as well as greater accountability, all being backed up by deeds, I would have believed that personally if it was proven to be true. Just my thoughts.

  9. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is an Ayn Rand quote for you: 1: “Whoever claims the right to redistribute the wealth produced by others is claiming the right to treat human beings as chattel.” No person has any right to wealth that was created by another, nor does one person have any right to democratically vote away the wealth of another person.

    • Just to clarify, Ragnar, you don’t believe a government should collect taxes?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if taxes are collected for the benefit of society at large, I have no problem with that. If that money is used to buy the votes of people, then I do object to that. Paying a price to live in a civilized society is one thing. Just taking money from one group of people by force to redistribute to other people is something I do object to. Even if some people have, in your words, “more than enough money,” that does not make it morally right to arbitrarily decide how much of that money they deserve to keep.

        • You can’t have it both ways, Ragnar. Taxes are necessary for the benefit of society. And those who have the most money should pay the most taxes. How can you object to that?
          Those taxes are not arbitrariliy taken from the wealthiest in our society.. Our elected representatives determine how much each bracket must pay. Taxes are not stolen from the rich. It is their obligation for living in a society to pay taxes for those less fortunate.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, taxing people to pay for things that benefit society is one thing. 47% of our population pay no federal income taxes. If we all benefit, we should pay something, even if it amounts to a few pennies. Reread the part about politicians trying to buy votes. This is the problem with politicians who promise free stuff. They have no plans to make it a reality, just using that as a tactic to get people to vote for them during the various election cycles.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, let me put it to you in another way: You have people who claim that we should have free college just based on their demand for it who have done nothing to earn it. We have people who get free college who got that as a reward for service to their country. Who should get the free education-someone who issues demands for free college or someone who risks literal life and limb and get the free college as a reward for service to one’s country? Why not get rid of all taxes and replace them with a simple sales tax?

  10. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the point I made about giving to Caesar that which belonged to Caesar and giving to God which belonged to God was that each thing that belonged to either ultimately belonged to them. You claim that selfishness is not a desirable trait? Why is it selfish for people who work hard to provide for their family members to want to keep the money they earn and it is not selfish for some people to demand that other people pay for all of their stuff?

  11. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here are a few videos for you: 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_w8jF7IKZvs, 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmWyJxnIjho, 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-5CCDZU9aE, 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zQ4Bw50gUlk I do not begrudge people’s pursuits of wealth. Having said that, I believe that there are more important things in life than money.

  12. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, one of the problems we have in society is that we have people who issue demands for free stuff. Demanding that something be given to someone for free is absurd. Millennial types should wake up and accept the fact that the world does not owe them anything. Of course, people like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, to name 2 examples, are perfectly happy to promise these people free stuff in order to garner their votes. When will some people realize that just because other people are intelligent and rich that they aren’t entitled to taking hard earned money or inherited money from other people? Somebody has to pay for all of the things that these people want, so why can’t the people who want these things pay for it? When people who go to college sign a paper saying they will pay money back, they are obligated to pay what they owe. It’s their responsibility. We seem to have people living in a dream world and want everything handed to them. They should wake up and accept the fact that they are not owed anything in life. Why should hard working people give away their earnings to people who aren’t willing to work as hard? Where do these people get the idea that people that earned their money should give it to them on the basis that they are hoarding the wealth? The fact that Leftists label people who inherit wealth as being moochers and not people who demand free stuff on our dime is absurd. Welfare should only be for people who fall on hard times, not used by some as a career opportunity where they get money for doing nothing. Self-made multimillionaires don’t owe anybody anything. The wealthy owe us nothing. They didn’t rip us off to get their money.

  13. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the Bible dictates that we should give to Caesar that which belongs to Caesar and give to God that which belongs to God. If one’s wealth is not the property of either, that wealth belongs to the individual who worked for it and the family members of that individual.

    • I don’t believe the Bible is any more than an outdated book of fairy tales, Ragnar. It’s too bad you don’t believe in helping out society. Selfishness is not a desirable trait.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the people who demand that the rich pay for their stuff are the selfish ones, not people who bust their butts working a 9:00 to 5:00 job to feed their family members. The gimme gimme crowd should wake up and not act like they are entitled to stuff on our dime.

  14. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, regarding the talking point that some people use regarding wealth hoarders, that talking point is intellectually dishonest and disingenuous. What the people who speak of wealth hoarders mean is that the so-called hoarders are denying the right of other people to the money of these so-called hoarders. No person has any right to another person’s wealth. Since when is wanting to keep the money you earned “hoarding”? Money that someone earned belongs to that person by definition.People who act like they can get away with issuing demands for free stuff come about as a result of their parent(s) never telling their kid(s) no. No matter how rich some people are, we have no right to their money. They earned their own wealth, so they should get to decide what they do with it. Rich people who earn, invest and save their money are not hoarding it. Some may have inherited wealth, as well as having worked for a lot of it. These silly Leftists are always so generous with other peoples money. They should show some initiative and create their own wealth, not demand that wealth be taken from other people. The top 1% do not hoard wealth. They invest their wealth in the economy. Just because it does not go directly into the pockets of the people who complain about wealth hoarders and/or wealth hoarding does not mean that it is going to remain unused.

  15. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if money management was encouraged from day one in the education of people, we would probably have fewer poor people. When the collapse of 2008 happened, that was more the fault of the banks and the government. The fact that we had a war in the Middle east happening did not help the matter. To assign all blame to the rich is absurd.

  16. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone who falls on hard times legitimately needs help, that is one thing. The thing that irritates me is when we have people who claim that they are on numerous forms of government assistance and yet out of the other side of their mouth are talking about some people contributing nothing to society. What they really mean is that the people who they speak of as not contributing to society are not catering to their demands and giving them stuff according to what they are demanding.

  17. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the earned vs. unearned argument about wealth essentially qualifies as a slippery slope. We have people who have worked hard for what they earned through the creation of goods and services that benefit society as a whole. In my opinion, they should be able to reap the fruits of their labor, not have that taken from them and redistributed to people who want free stuff. This is the confusing thing about Leftists. While they decry people who inherit wealth free of tax as being leeches and moochers, which is odd due to the inherited wealth coming to them voluntarily, they refuse to apply that to people who actually want free stuff. Someone being given something voluntarily that is unearned makes the recipient a moocher in the eyes of Leftists and someone who wants to use compulsion to get what he or she wants is not a moocher in their eyes? People who issue demands for free things for themselves and do not consider the financial costs to other people are the real leeches and moochers, not people who want to hold on to what their family has already earned. When Leftists complain that people who inherit wealth are receiving welfare, the “welfare” is being provided by family members. People who inherit wealth are not getting government subsidized welfare. If Leftists want to make the argument that giving people money makes them lazy, apply that argument to people who collect welfare and do nothing. Those people who were/are raised in hardworking families seem to appreciate the fact that time and effort was required to earn the money they receive and that the heirs ultimately inherit, while people who issue demands for free stuff just want other people to cater to them.

    • The problem you have is your stereotypes,Ragnar. It seems to me you consider all wealthy people and their families to be wonderful and deserving more. At the same time, you indicate that those who receive government help are all “leeches and moochers” and are “demanding…free things.” I maintain those are overexaggerated stereotypes and don’t apply to everyone, or even most people, in those categories. But it certainly explains your passionate views on this subject. I wonder where you get these ideas…I doubt from an unbiased source..

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the demand for “free” public college devalues the time, effort and money that people who worked hard to get through required to get there. When someone whines that the 1% is causing catastrophic student loan crises that other people face, that is fundamentally dishonest. If I elect to not go to college, that is on me, not the responsibility of other people.

  18. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people can make the argument that just because a certain tax like the estate tax impacts only 1%-3% of the population that it should not matter to the rest of us. Someone who receives disability benefits has paid into the system, so that person deserves to get those benefits. People who sit and ask for handouts are contributing nothing, so they deserve nothing. It is very hypocritical to defend people who issue demands for free college while claiming that the recipient(s) of inherited wealth would be undeserving of that wealth. Just because one tax affects 1%-3% of the population does not make it a moral tax. 1 tax that does not affect 47% of the population is the income tax. Why should the rich pay for our wants? Why should the rich be required to pay for people to go to college that these people may not be related to? Why does the government have the right to tax already taxed wealth that one person wants to leave to his or her living family members when that person is at death’s doorstep? People who bust their butts during their working lives to make money for themselves and their children should have more right to that wealth than someone who wants rich people to pay for that person’s stuff. Here are 3 questions for you: 1: How would you feel if you had a net worth of $11, 000, 000.00 and the government came to you and said that you have too much money and took $10, 000, 000.00 of your money and redistributed that money to 10 people that you did not know? 2: Even if a college education is important, why should someone be required to pay for another person to go to college that the person may not be related to? 3: Why can people who go to college not accept the fact that the debts that they take on in order to go are their responsibility instead of demanding that other people pay for it?

    • Answers: 1) Not realistic or likely to happen, so why worry about it?
      2) More people with a college education is good for our society and economy. Rich people should want to help our country by helping young people through their taxes.
      3) College costs are astronomical today. Student debt is even more than credit card debt. Rich people with empathy would want to help young people get out of their enormous debt. Conversely, Ideologues are too rigid to help students get out of their mountain of debt.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, your answers make perfect sense. I do agree with you on point #2.

        • Glad to hear it, Ragnar. Thank you.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, on points #1 and #3, I have a slightly different perspective than you do. Having said that, I am glad that we agree on #2. While I disagree with you on the tax matter, I do want to see a better quality of life for people on the bottom rung of the economic ladder. The problem is when wealth is redistributed from one group of people to another via government instituted force.

          • If you want to improve the life of those on the bottom rung, taxes can help that. We all pay taxes. What’s the problem?

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, the problem is the lack of accountability on the part of the government to the people. We had this problem that was pervasive during Barack Obama’s administration. He promised to “make our government open and transparent,” those being his words. The only thing that was transparent was the corruption.

          • Some people differ. https://fas.org/blogs/secrecy/2017/11/obama-transparency/In my opinion (and in the opinion of many others) the Trump Administration is the least open and transparent in American history.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, expecting honesty from any politicians nowadays seems to be asking too much.

  19. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who issue demands for things are the end result of their parent(s) never saying no to some of the things that these people want. I believe that people who demand free stuff should be sat down and showed on paper the actual costs of the things they want. I college is free, what will happen if people sign up and just decide not to attend? Making people pay the tuition costs will cause them to pay attention.

  20. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, self-made multimillionaires who built their businesses with their own hands should be able to reap the rewards of that which they produced. These people who talk about wealth hoarders should figure out how the wealthy got that way before they start yapping and regurgitating talking points that they hear from their professors and talking heads about wealth hoarding. Part of the problem with many people is that they get programmed into thinking the way other people want them to and show no indication of independent thinking capacity. For all of this talk about people who are hoarding wealth, if these people actually earned that wealth, that wealth belongs to them by definition, so these people who talk about wealth hoarders are just sitting and looking for handouts because they are unwilling to get their own hands dirty. When someone signs up for student loans in order to go to school, that person is obligated to payoff those student loans. The catastrophe of student loan debt is not the responsibility of the wealthy, just the responsibility of people who signed the admission papers. You said that people on the Right want to blame poor people for our problems. If they were educated about how to manage money better, there would be fewer people in poverty. Personally, I would find it to be much easier to take someone seriously who said his or her family was struggling financially and was having a hard time putting food on the table than I would an able-bodied adult who is just looking for a handout, such as Keely Mullen. People like Keely Mullen are the reason that people make fun of millennials. The entitlement attitude is also absurd. Keely Mullen literally said her family is already on federal assistance and right after that said there’s a population that is not contributing to society. She literally explained herself and her family with her words. When people like that say that there are some people who are not contributing to society, do they really mean society or is the word society just used as a cop-out in order to actually say that these people are not contributing to the ability of other people to live a carefree lifestyle? Where is the line supposed to be drawn between people who actually do need help and people just looking to scam the system for their own benefit?

  21. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, taxation is a necessity to pay for things that benefit society. While it is true that the rich and affluent should bear a higher percentage of the nation’s tax burden than the rest of us, the Progressives’ tax schemes are bordering on confiscation. Their endgame is to buy votes of people by promising them all free stuff if these people vote for politicians who will promise or enact those ideas.

  22. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I will not deny the fact that people who have great wealth have a greater advantage economically than those who have little. The problem we come across is assuming in absolute terms that wealth is ill-gotten, not just acquired through some people creating products that are satisfying the wants and needs of other people. Here are 2 quotes by Walter Williams for you: 1: “How does something immoral, when done privately, become moral when it is done collectively? Furthermore, does legality establish morality? Slavery was legal; apartheid is legal; Stalinist, Nazi, and Maoist purges were legal. Clearly, the fact of legality does not justify these crimes. Legality, alone, cannot be the talisman of moral people.” 2: “But let me offer you my definition of social justice: I keep what I earn and you keep what you earn. Do you disagree? Well then tell me how much of what I earn belongs to you – and why”? Being concerned with the welfare of people on the lower rung on the economic ladder is one thing. Taking wealth from people who just happen to have more is not the solution.

    • It’s called taxation, Ragnar, not confiscating wealth from rich people. Taxation is tried and true, effective in balancing the huge disparity of wealth in capitalism, and is common in advanced nations. Third-world countries have a few wealthy oligarchs while the rest of the country wallows in poverty. We are heading in that direction and I don’t like it. Progressive taxation is fine with me.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Outside of what is necessary to fund government, government does not deserve anymore money from us. When some people start whining about wealth hoarding, those people are just too lazy to learn how to create their own. Few people become rich off of inheritance, however, family money should stay in the family. It is exceedingly hypocritical to whine that people who inherit wealth free of tax are undeserving of it, however, it is fine to advocate for college that is tuition free.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the progressive income tax is a Communist originated concept. Progressives are closet Communists.

        • Really Ragnar, is that what you think? How would you feel if I said conservatives are closet fascists? Same thing.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, read the Communist Manifesto. Karl Marx called for the idea of a graduated (progressive) income tax.

          • You are right, Ragnar, Marx did promote a progressive income tax. But so did Abraham Lincoln, Maynard Keynes, Woodrow Wilson and Theodore Roosevelt. I suspect your sources forgot to mention them.

            “Taxation is what we pay for civilized society.” Oliver Wendell Holmes

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, there is a difference between taxation and excessive taxation. I know what a marginal tax rate is. That rate applies to a certain dollar amount above a specified threshold. An example: The top tax rate is 70%. If someone earned $3, 000, 000.00+ before the tax applied, that person would not be hurting financially. Heck, if I earned that much money and had to pay a 70% tax on income above that, I could care less because I made a lot of money before the tax was paid. My problem is with the lack of fiscal responsibility on the part of our government, as well as no accountability among some of our leaders to the people.

  23. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I will not deny the fact that many people got rich due to inheritance. I will not deny the fact that many people who got wealthy got that way due to assistance along the way from other people. The problem is in how people who built the business with their own hands and brain before employing more people do not seem to be given much credit, if any, for it.

  24. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, Elizabeth Warren claimed that no rich person got rich on his or her own. While that may be true in some ways, how does that explain the fact that many people who started out with ideas to make money made that money in the first place? Take Henry Ford, the man who founded the Ford motor company. He started the company, so was he undeserving of any credit for that?

    • Ragnar, this may help you understand her point: “There is nobody in this country who got rich on their own. Nobody. You built a factory out there – good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory… Now look. You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea – God bless! Keep a hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

  25. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I was speaking of one person who was either trying to vote away money which was earned by another or just taking money by force.

  26. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, no person has the right to democratically vote to take money from other people or to just walk up and take money from other people by force. Redistribution of wealth is theft if force is used to redistribute it. Of course, Progressives are thieves. What they can’t get by doing work to get what they want they will just take from other people at the point of a gun.

    • Ragnar, taxation has been declared constitutional and is practiced in every other country. Without it, we would become a third-world country, with a handful of wealthy oligarchs while everybody else lives in squalor (that’s just human nature, greed is powerful).

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if someone walked up to you and said, “Give me your money,” why should it be wrong if it is an average person and not if it is a taxing authority?

  27. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem we have is not that we have enough rich people. The problem is that we have too few rich people. Wealth can be earned and stay stagnant and unused. Wealth can be created and invested in products that improve everyone’s quality of life Wealth can be created and spent extravagantly and the expenditures could do nothing useful. Walter Williams said, “Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we’d call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that’s exactly what thieves do — redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders’ vision, it’s a sin in the eyes of God.” Taking the fruits of what one labors for to provide for that person and that person’s family by force to redistribute to another family on the basis that the family has enough wealth as it is may sound moral, however, it is a contradiction to subscribe to the idea that an immoral act would lead to a moral good. Progressives who make arguments for wealth redistribution don’t care about morality. They spew talking points about the redistribution of wealth to make themselves feel good. When people start issuing what they call demands, they should be sat down and told that their behavior is unacceptable. This is the problem with many of the millennial type people. Discipline was never instilled in some of them. Walking around with a “you owe me” mindset will only hold these people back. No person is owed anything in life, nor should one be obligated to bow to the demands of another. It is all just a bunch of claptrap when college aged people, who are also adults by definition, claim that other people who they claim are hoarding wealth and causing a catastrophe that students are facing with the tuition costs and student loan debt talk about this stuff. Newsflash: You signed the admission papers, so it is your responsibility. Not all people abuse welfare, nor are all people who collect welfare lazy. The problem is when people try to spin a story that is laced with emotional appeal that their families may face hardship, which may be true and it also may not be true. If people who are demanding free stuff could actually do math, they would know that things would not go in their favor. For people who are so concerned about the costs of things like college tuition, these people show little consideration regarding how their demands will incur financial costs to other people. There is also the issue of financial illiteracy among some people who have never been properly educated about managing money. When some people complain that a certain segment of the population is doing nothing to contribute to society, what it seems to me is that they are saying that these people are not contributing to their abilities to live a carefree lifestyle and have no sense of responsibility as an end result. Precluding legitimate disabilities that keep people from pursuing certain types of work, nothing stops them from looking for other means of employment. Being self-employed is an option. They may be very conservative politically, however, I think everyone could benefit from the knowledge that Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams have regarding economics. One thing I also find to be laughable is when Leftists claim that people who inherit wealth will become lazy, however, they have no qualms about demanding that other people pay for their stuff so they can get it free for themselves. How can that double-standard/hypocrisy not be obvious to anybody? Why should hard working people give away their earnings to people who aren’t willing to work as hard so they can party all night long and live a carefree lifestyle?

  28. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, no person needs billions of dollars. Having said that, without some degree of a 1%, the 99% may not have adequate employment opportunities. What are your thoughts on entitlement reform? Will making the rich pay for them cause them to be sustainable? Do you think some of the programs should face spending cuts or be eliminated? If so, which would you like to see face spending cuts or be eliminated? Which programs would you like to see remain intact?

    • Ragnar, I can’t think of any services that benefit the disadvantaged that should be eliminated. However, I’m sure many can be improved. The place that needs the most cuts is the military.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I will not argue with you on that. The specific question was if there were certain things that you would like to see spending cuts or have them be eliminated altogether. Personally, I would like to see the war on drugs come to an end, to name one example.

  29. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the Keely Mullen type people who feel like they can issue demands and operate under the delusion that people will accede to those demands should wake the hell up and get a life. Nobody owes these people who issue demands for certain things these things. When someone is wanting to go to college, that person knows what is expected of them regarding class attendance and the costs of tuition, as well as food, room and board, et cetera. Wealth hoarding is a nonexistent thing. Either wealth is created or it is not. When someone speaks to people hoarding the wealth and causing a catastrophe that students face, that person is either a liar or is delusional. Yeah, being forced to pay for that which you want is a catastrophe. Not. Outside of a degree of inherited wealth, I would not be surprised if much of the wealth that a rich person has is due to being smart with his or her money.

  30. Ragner, I’m not sure what you want but I deleted the email below. If you’d like you can rewrite the previous comment, and I can delete the first one.

  31. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the wealth of the 1%, even the 0.01% is not being unused. That wealth is invested in multiple areas. We may not see what the people who have it are doing with it, however, we see the end result of it. People like Keely Mullen and other people like her are the end result of having parents who never tell their kids no when their kids want certain things and will whine and pout when they don’t get things their way. Keely Mullen literally said her family is already on federal assistance and right after that said there’s a population that is not contributing to society. She literally explained herself and her family. They are the ones that are not contributing to society. Of course, when people like that accuse other people of contributing nothing to society, what that translates to is this: People are not contributing to our ability to live a lifestyle that is free of any responsibility. Leftists label people who inherit massive wealth free of tax, even if that wealth is unearned, as spoiled brats, however, they don’t gripe about people who actually demand free things? How the heck is that logic supposed to work? Keely Mullen is actually from a wealthy upper class family. She went to a private university paid in full by her parents. They were never on welfare or public assistance. She just lied the entire time and was exposed right after this. This is the problem with welfare fraud. Welfare programs should be for people who actually need help, not used by people who want to sit on their butts and be lazy. Welfare should also only be a temporary thing for people who fall on hard times, not used as a career opportunity that allows people to get something for nothing via taxpayer funded benefits. Most people who incredibly work do not meet the requirements to receive government assistance unless they lie to the system.

  32. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, one of the problems that we have is that we have gone in the direction of a society that is based on entitlement, where people feel like they are entitled to various things without factoring in the costs to other people. These people also seem to have an entitlement mentality where they think they are entitled in absolute terms to that which belongs to other people. Regarding the notion of wealth hoarding,that is disingenuous. People who make that argument are just too damn lazy to learn the skills to create their own. When someone says, “I look around and I see a segment of the population that is contributing to the wellness of society,” they are speaking of themselves without realizing it. No person hoards wealth and no person caused college aged people to sign up for student loan debts. The idea of wealth hoarding is only a figment in the imagination of people who make that argument. Why is someone who inherits wealth and/or estates due to a voluntary transaction castigated as being a leech and a moocher and yet someone who whines about college being too expensive and essentially asking for a handout is not? You made the point that people who inherit wealth did nothing to earn it. That point is stipulated, however, it is very hypocritical when people say that those who demand free college deserve it and people who inherit wealth are undeserving of it. Neither is earned, however, this cannot and should not be had both ways. Keely Mullen is actually from a wealthy upper class family. She went to a private university paid in full by her parents. They were never on welfare or public assistance. She just lied the entire time while she was being interviewed. So she and her family should be investigated for welfare fraud.

  33. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, outside of the taxes they owe as dictated by law and their tax bracket, we have no right to the money of the wealthy otherwise, not to take it by force and not to vote on how much of it they do or do not deserve to keep. For all of these people who are so concerned about their lack of money, here is some advice: Look for areas of nonessential spending and eliminate it or find cheaper alternatives for what you want. We have a bunch of people who seem to believe that everything is owed to them in life.

  34. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, for every person who is issuing demands for free college, I think that the tuition should go up. That way, if people actually had the good judgement to budget effectively, they could actually afford to go to college. Displaying an entitlement mentality is absurd.

  35. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I do not have an issue with people who truly and sincerely need help. The problem is that these people also should be willing to help improve their own situations. You once said that college is important. Really? Maybe you can explain why some of the most successful people in life are college dropouts. Here is a list of them: 1: Howard Hughes, a man with a net worth of $1.5, 000, 000, 000.00, 2: Marc Rich, a man whose net worth amounts to $2, 000, 000, 000.00, 3: Ted Turner, whose net worth is $2, 000, 000, 000.00, 4: Mark Zuckerberg, whose net worth is $17.5, 000, 000, 000.00, 5: Bill Gates, whose net worth is $61, 000, 000, 000.00, all who dropped out of college to pursue more ideal endavors. You can say all you want that a college education and a college degree would do some good, which may possible be true, however, that also sounds like an insult to people who become successful without ever going to college. Self-made multimillionaires should be able to keep the lion’s share of their wealth, only paying taxes to fund any and all necessary government functions. Otherwise, what they bust their butts for should be theirs to enjoy. Rather than whine about people who are supposedly hoarding wealth, the people who gripe about that should learn the skills to create their own. A lot of people who are wealthy worked for that wealth. They can give it away by building new businesses or whatever they want with their money. Regarding the people who bitch and complain about the catastrophic student loan debts that people face, if they took out the student loans, they should be responsible for their repayment only, not try to get out of paying for something that they should take responsibility for. Why should people who work a 9:00 to 5:00 job to provide for their family members be required to fork over any of their hard-earned money to subsidize a family who collects welfare? Nobody gets to establish a monopoly on what amounts to an obscene amount of wealth that other people can have. No person owes another person anything in life. Why is a person who inherits money seen as being lazy when the transaction of wealth is done on a voluntary basis and yet someone who demands free college is not seen as being lazy? When some people say, “The 1% are not contributing to society,” which is false, they are really saying, “The rich are not catering to our demands that they pay for all of our “free” stuff.” To be technical, a college aged person is also an adult, so that person should be responsible for his or her own choices in life. If people who pursue a higher education come out less educated than they were when they went in, they were ripped off. Regarding the language that Keely Mullen used, the word being demands, that automatically implies that you want to force someone to give you something without the person having any vote in the matter.

  36. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problems afflicting the poor are not entirely the fault of the rich. The poor are given an incentive to stay poor because of the welfare benefits they will receive from the government if they stay in a state of financial destitution. Not every person who is receiving welfare benefits is doing so fraudulently. On the matter of disability benefits, to name one example, if people pay into the system who are disabled but do work to some degree, I believe that they should be able to collect the benefits. The wealth hoarding issue, if it is an issue, would only be resolved by abolishing all currency. For people who are so concerned about the costs of college tuition, either apply for a scholarship, get student loans and repay them with time, just save up the money and pay for it out of pocket or just don’t go. Why should someone who works a 9:00 to 5:00 job to earn a living be required to pay 30%, 40%, even 50% of that person’s income in taxes and have that money go to pay for another person’s stuff? An easy option that could help in the long-term is for people to cut nonessential spending and use the savings to pay for what they want or need. There are numerous ways in which people could learn to save money. People who are so worried about the cost of things should budget better, not ask for other people to bail them out of their situations. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Julian Assange and Mark Zuckerberg are college dropouts, however, they became wildly wealthy. So a college degree is not an indicator in absolute terms that one will become a success story in life.

  37. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be rather absurd when some people claim that people who inherit wealth are getting welfare that they don’t need. The Dictionary describes welfare as promoting the good fortune, health, happiness, prosperity, etc., of a person or people. Proponents of the estate tax argue that its repeal will lead to welfare for people who don’t need it. That argument disregards the desire of people to provide financial security to loved ones when the person or people doing it are no longer working or are deceased. Since inherited money comes from one branch of a family to the next voluntarily, it is disingenuous to claim that people who inherit wealth are receiving welfare, at least if it is government subsidized welfare. Even if the inherited wealth is unearned, the only people who seem to have a problem with that are people who feel like the money of deceased people should go into their pockets, maybe the government, not to the family that should have every right to it. Just because some people are financially irresponsible does not mean that we should have to bail them out. No matter how rich anyone is, the only people who should have any rights to it are the person who created that wealth and that person’s family. The family members may not have earned that wealth, however, the person who did should have every right to it and to do with it whatever he or she wants, to give it to whoever he or she wants to. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Taking money from people who work for it and giving it to people who have done nothing to deserve it via the forced redistribution of wealth devalues the effort that the person who created that wealth to earn it and makes the undeserving people have an entitlement mentality.

  38. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, there are numerous ways in which people can learn to create wealth. The problem is that we have people who want to take wealth from other people on the basis that some people have, in your words, “more than enough money.” No person hoards wealth and no person has the right to wealth that other people created, nor are these so-called wealth hoarders responsible for other people’s student loan debts. Someone who complains about catastrophic student loan debt already knew what they were getting into when they signed the papers, so people who whine about this should wake up. There is a severe disconnect from reality when Leftists claim to advocate giving some people free stuff and yet they all whine and complain about any parent(s) giving money to kid(s) and claim that the kid(s) did nothing to deserve it. If the parent(s) decide that the kid(s) should get all of the wealth that was created by the parent(s) at the time of the death of the parent(s,) that is between the parent(s) and the kid(s) only. No matter how rich anyone is, that person should not be obligated to pay for anything that another person demands. Demanding things automatically implies that the person feels like he or she is deserving of certain things. Maybe these people should go to military school and hope that they never go into live combat and then they will become more disciplined and not act like they are entitled to everything. Why is everything a catastrophe for some people? People should just grow up. People who are whining about other people having money that these people actually worked for to provide for family are looking for excuses to be lazy. 20, 000, 000, 000, 000.00+ in debt and these people who are demanding free stuff just want more? The message that is conveyed by people who are on welfare and do not try to get out of it is that these people view welfare as a career opportunity where they get money for doing nothing. Here is another problem: Unlike inherited wealth, welfare money is subsidized by the taxpayers. Do these people who demand free stuff get drunk at a local bar and then when some of the effects wear off probably realize how stupid they sound when they make their various demands on live television? Instead of worrying about other people’s money, people should just manage their own. Look for areas of either nonessential spending or find ways to save money. When someone says that some people are not contributing to society, they are actually speaking of themselves and not realizing it. As far as hoarding the wealth is concerned, why can’t some people just keep their hands out of other people’s pockets?

  39. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people should learn to manage their own money and not be fixated on how much money other people have. If someone has enough money to be financially secure and comfortable, why does it matter if someone else just happens to have more?

  40. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the rich pay the lion’s share of the nation’s taxes. Why should those who pay the most not reap the most benefits? Progressive income tax as a concept is antithetical to the notion of equality and equal treatment. People who argue for the estate tax seem to operate under the delusion that they are more deserving of a deceased person’s money than the family members of that person. Earned wealth vs. inherited wealth-before one is passed on, it has to be earned. Why should people who bust their butts to earn a living, as well as their family members by extension, have less right to that money than people who actively embarrass themselves on live TV by saying that they are on numerous forms of government assistance and use that as license to be lazy? Not all people who land on welfare are lazy, however, any person who is on welfare and uses that as an excuse to act like that person is entitled to free stuff should just wake up. Ben Carson is an example of a person who had a family that experienced hard times, however, he did not turn welfare into a career opportunity, unlike people who use their statuses as welfare recipients to indicate the idea that they are entitled to more free stuff. The Keely Mullen types give people who really need help a bad rap, mainly because those who need help may not be able to get it because some people fraudulently apply for welfare. Progressive income tax=punishing the hardworking and rewarding people who are lazy.

  41. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Why should hard working people give away their earnings to people who aren’t willing to work as hard? Why should people who work a 9:00 to 5:00 job have money that they worked for to provide for family members taken from them and given to other people who refuse to get their hands dirty? These people who work hard don’t owe people who sit on their butts and collect taxpayer-funded welfare anything, period. If people just get hand outs then there will be no motivation to work hard and society will collapse. Yes, there are rich people who were born into that wealth but their families before them worked hard to give them that. It’s not right to take their money simply because they have more of it and give it to other people by force. One of the problems that is so obvious is that some people have been living sheltered lives and have no clue as to the fact that life is never easy, nor should it be. Self-made multimillionaires who work, save and invest their money should be able to reap the rewards of their being financially responsible. If money management was explained to people early on, we would have fewer people whining about wealth hoarding. Wealth hoarding is not even a legitimate talking point. Either wealth is created or it is not. Dave Ramsey, Jim Kramer, Walter Williams, Thomas Sowell, et al, should sit down with people like this and explain economic theory and basic money management. You said that the people on the right want to blame poor people for our problems? What is the solution that the people on the Left have? Just create more of them. One of the problems we have regarding people living in poverty is that proper money management has not been effectively explained or encouraged. Why are people living in perpetual debt? Why are people being encouraged to consume more and save less?

  42. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, some politicians have advocated a wealth tax on the top 1%, even the top 0.01%, however, that would do 1 of 2 things: 1: Cause the people who are liable for it to falsely report the amount of wealth they have and 2: It would result in capital flight or people spending themselves into financial ruin. Proponents of a wealth tax also overlook the fact that the rich have greater economic mobility than the rest of the population, so they can stash all of their wealth in overseas bank accounts to avoid the tax altogether. Why is it so difficult for some people to want to work and make their own money and it is easy for them to demand that things be provided for them on the dime of the taxpayers? I trust billionaires with money more than the government, seeing as they are likely to do more useful things with it than the government.

    • Yes, Ragnar, you have told me your views on this subject probably more than 100 times.
      I just don’t agree with you, and have told you many times why. I don’t know what more you expect of me.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, to use the Keely Mullen example, she lied about her family’s situation. If she wanted free college, she could serve in the armed forces, even if she did not go into active combat and gotten the free college as a reward. When a rich person says he or she feels like he or she is not contributing to society, that person can write a bigger check. A person who collects welfare and complains about people not contributing are basically saying that the rich are not paying for their stuff.

  43. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, many people seem to believe that the level of wealth inequality in the USA is staggering. There is the idea of a wealth tax being promoted. Rather than display an obsessive fixation with the amount of wealth other people have, the people who gripe about that should mind their own business. Instead of worrying about some people having more money than other people, we should be concerned with helping people with less money have a higher standard of living. When some people say that there are people who are contributing to society, they are speaking of themselves, as well as people who are on welfare without realizing it. Here is another thing people who accuse other people of not contributing to society are doing: These people are asking for handouts and not willing to do anything to help their situations along the way. Another thing that these people who accuse other people of contributing nothing would be saying is this: Those people are not contributing to the ability of some welfare recipients to continue living in a perpetual state of dependency. Why own one’s own choices when other people can be scapegoats?

  44. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, any person who makes an argument that we have wealth hoarders in society would be using a false talking point. What is the solution-just abolish all currency?

  45. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the arguments that are made in favor of the redistribution of wealth from the rich to the rest of us in the name of fairness may sound moral, however, it is impossible to justify the end result of an action as being moral if the action itself is immoral. On the U.S. dollar, it says it is legal tender, so its value is based on the number of dollars in circulation only. Otherwise, it is just worthless paper with numbers and faces on it.

  46. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I will apologize for some of my seemingly harsh criticisms and rhetoric. The problem I see is that it may not always be obvious as to which people fall into the category of really and sincerely needing our help and people who are essentially telling fabricated stories to garner sympathy from the rest of us.

  47. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I would like to see a society where everyone can experience financial freedom. I would like for there to be no poverty at all in our country, even our world. Unless some people have too much pride or are too stubborn to admit that they need or want help, I believe in helping everyone insofar as I can as long as I do not experience any harm myself in the process. Some people, Ben Carson is an example, may have been on welfare, however, it was only a temporary thing. When people who run for elected office make these promises of providing free stuff to all of us, that devalues the idea of personal responsibility and accountability. We seem to be on the same page regarding our desires to see a better future for people who have fallen on hard times. The issue is how we get there.

    • It’s interesting you say ” I believe in helping everyone insofar as I can as long as I do not experience any harm myself in the process.” To me, that sounds selfish. If you are going to help people it requires some sacrifice.
      Welfare is supposed to be temporary and is designed for that. You may want to look at the welfare act under Bill Clinton 1996 that set time limits for welfare and promoted work.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, when I was speaking of wanting no harm to come to myself, I was speaking to not wanting my desire to be helping people in need resulting in them taking advantage of me in the process. Hence the no harm coming to myself.

  48. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I would rather see an emotionally devastated and grieving family keep all of the wealth that was left to them by a dying family member than I would want for that wealth to go to subsidize the lifestyle of people who demand free stuff on the dime of the taxpayers. When people who make arguments for free public college can’t articulate any valid justification for it, I would find it to be perfectly understandable why people would laugh at them. Here are 3 questions for you: 1: Why is an emotionally devastated family who is contending with the loss of a loved one less entitled the wealth that was left to them by their loved one than a person who collects welfare and does not do anything but issue demands for free stuff? 2: Since the money was earned by the person who is at death’s doorstep, why should that person not have the right to decide who gets to inherit and keep that money? 3: Given the government’s questionable track record with how it has handled our money, why should it get more from us? I also find it to be humorous when language like demand is being used, as if these people like they are deserving of all of these things. When people say that some people have more than enough money, that sounds to me like the people who make that argument are just inviting themselves to take what other people have.

    • I don’t know what to say, Ragnar. You have told me a thousand times that the family of a billionaire should get his or her money, not poor people seeking help. There is no point in saying the same thing over and over again. You are not going to sway me to your point of view, and Ithere is no evidence that your read my rebuttals to your comments anyway..

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the problem with people who are demanding free things is that they mean that they want other people to pay for all of it. Basically, it is a “free for me but not for thee” mentality.

        • Ragnar, why do you keep using “demanding free things.” Other than a Fox News plant, I don’t see anybody “demanding.” People collect government help because they are entitled to it based on what the government decides. People see if they qualify and if they do, they wait in line and collect it. “Demanding” is merely an inaccurate term used to incite the right-wing base.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, unless Keely Mullen has lived in a bubble her whole life, a place where she is protected from everything, she would probably realize how clueless she is sounding. Just my thoughts.

          • As I’ve said before, Keely Martin is one person and represents only herself. She is also a phony, having come from a wealthy family. Fox News loves her because she represents a stereotype they can use any time to get their right-wing viewers incited.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, I can understand the desire that some people have for wanting to have the opportunity to go to college. I could buy into the argument that college tuition could be cheaper. Having said that, people should vote with their money.

          • One big problem in this country is people voting with their money. With the help of Citizens United, there is no limit for rich people buying elections. Poor people not so much.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, what are your thoughts on campaign finance reform?

          • Campaign finance reform is the number one issue needed to fix our political system.Money is way too important  and has too much influence in our  system of government. Especially after the Citizens United ruling.                                       s

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, who do you think has the most practical ideas regarding campaign finance reform? I will look into this in further detail, however, I would like to get your perspective.

          • I have no problem with the ideas of all the Democratic Party presidential candidates. Joe Biden has been advocating public financing since 1973. He worked for campaign finance reform throughout his senate career, advocating contribution limits and overturning Citizens United. Let me know what you find out and what you think is the best solution.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, I agree with you.

  49. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kx5t9hy3LUw Why should the money of the 1%, even the 0.01% be required to support people who turn welfare into a career opportunity via taxes and wealth redistribution? You had claimed that people who inherit wealth did nothing to earn it. People who collect welfare benefits and demand free stuff did nothing to earn that either, so it is exceedingly hypocritical for people to say that free college and other free things should be available to people and that people who inherit wealth should have little, if any, right to it. Why should people who get tax-free welfare benefits have more right to that and a family that has inherited wealth has very little right to it?

    • I looked at the video you recommended. It was totally worthless for me. Is this an example of where you get your ideas? Explain to me why this video had any value. Do you base your ideas on religion?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I have my personal religious beliefs, however, I am not interested in making those beliefs law. Welfare fraud would not be an issue if we did not have the welfare state.

        • I don’t consider the U.S. a welfare state. There are many other countries that help out their citizens more. We give just enough for people to survive. I don’t know of anybody that has gotten rich off of social assistance. Wait, I take that back, many wealthy people have taken advantage of subsidies and tax breaks and have greatly improved their wealth.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, who has more right to the wealth of people who work hard-people who have no involvement in its creation or the family members of these people?

  50. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, to use Biblical arguments, as well as moral arguments, the estate tax, as well as the demands that people issue for free college, are in violation of the 7th and 10th Commandments. Wanting to have someone pay for something that another person wants via force is stealing from one person and obligating that person against that person’s will to pay for something that will not benefit that person at all. Stealing wealth that one has inherited constitutes coveting the good of another person.

  51. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, just because some people can be financially irresponsible does not mean that other people should be required to bail them out. You speak to the issue of inequality. I also noted that you claim that the rich have more than enough money. Here is a hypothetical scenario for you: A person busts his butt to provide for his or her family, depending on who the breadwinner in this case would be and only keeps half of what was earned and the rest of that money is taxed and redistributed to people who get money for doing nothing at the expense of the breadwinner and the family of the breadwinner. Why are people who are getting free stuff via welfare benefits, which is technically subsidized by the taxpayers and not doing anything useful more entitled to the money that a family worked for and not their own children?

    • To you Ragnar, welfare recipients are lazy moochers. That is your preferred stereotype, but not always accurate. People are getting free stuff to better their terrible economic situation. Now, some will abuse it but I have yet to see evidence from you of how many.
      Others will get a second chance to improve the lives of them and their family.
      What do Kelly Clarkson, Scarlett Johansson, J.K. Rowling, Bruce Springsteen, Senator Patty Murray, Dr. Ben Carson and Rep. Barbara Lee have in common? They all collected welfare or food stamps at one time in their life. Are they lazy moochers?

  52. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if I saw someone who was starving and homeless, I would help that person in any way possible insofar as it did no harm to me in the process. I have no sympathy for people who use the “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to get me through college” line as an excuse to demand free stuff. Rich people should not be required to bail these people out of their situations. Just manage your money better. Problem solved. When people are given the message that they don’t have to work, that government will be their benevolent caretaker and provide for all of their wants and needs, that sounds enticing until the money to pay for all of this stuff runs out.

    • Ragnar, what is so wrong about taxpayers helping out those in need? It’s called assistance, not “free stuff.” In your world, people should just pick themselves up by their bootstraps. The real world is one of limited opportunity, with a government that doesn’t want to help the disadvantaged. Which is why we don’t provide universal health care, have underfunded schools, and have a national minimum wage of $7.25! The ability to improve your status today is the lowest it has ever been. You worry about poor people getting a limited handout, while rich people keep getting richer than they have ever been with income inequality the widest it has ever been.

  53. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, billionaires don’t have a big vault in their bedrooms holding all of their money. It is largely invested in the economy. Just because it does not get immediately redistributed to people who have less money does not mean that the wealth is stagnant and will be unused. No one owes anybody else anything in life. Even if we went with a wealth tax, that would lead to capital flight and no wealth would be here to tax. People should learn to manage their money better and not worry about other people having more. There is nothing fair when money is taken arbitrarily from people who have more and redistributing it to people who have less. Taxing the rich to pay for things that benefit everyone is one thing. People who say, “We want the rich to pay for our stuff” is a separate issue. If someone has parents who are scraping by to put him or her through college, the tuition must be really cheap or the person in question is lying about his or her family’s situation.

    • You say “Taxing the rich to pay for things that benefit everyone is one thing.” Really? Are you thinking of universal health care, decent public education, and a minimum wage that real people can live on? Those things benefit our country.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I did say that. What I find distasteful is when some people demand that other people pay for their stuff. If I wanted a mansion, which I have no real desire for, I would save up the money and build one with my own hands, not ask other people to do it for me.

        • I don’t know who is “demanding” anything. Requesting or accepting are more accurate terms. And I’m sure nobody has requested a mansion. Unless you know something I don’t.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, the language Keely Mullen used was 3 core demands.

          • I suspect Keely Mullen is someone Fox News uses to stir up their viewers (they love to do that). She is extreme, but represents only Keely Mullen.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, to issue demands indicates the belief that someone is automatically entitled to something without working for it or earning it. Do you deny that?

          • Ragnar: That sounds like a belief, not a demand.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if someone demands something, that indicates the notion that the person is deserving of said thing. Example: I demand that my coffee be free of charge. Just demanding that my coffee be free of charge will not make it actually happen. 3 core demands indicates that the person wants something but wants other people to pay for it.

          • Again, Ragnar, somebody believing they are entitled to something is not a demand. It is a desire or belief in something. A demand requires someone to forcibly ask for something. I think you would be hard-pressed to find somebody demanding welfare or public assistance. Someone’s desire or wish for something is different than a demand.Check the dictionary.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, review that video I linked. Keely Mullen’s word was demands. Demanding something makes it seem like someone believes that they are deserving of something. Example: I demand that Starbucks sell me a $15.00 cup of coffee for $6.00. Why should that demand be invalid and not a demand for free public college?

          • As I said before, Ragnar, Keely Mullen is one person representing herself. I don’t know of any others she speaks for. She is the kind of person Fox News likes to put on to stir up their base (they put on AOC a lot, for example). If she makes a demand, it hardly matters to anyone.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, here is an example of a demand for you: I demand that someone makes me a cup of coffee and that it be free of charge. Why should I not have that right and yet someone who demands free college should have that as a right?

          • Apparently you haven’t read my previous responses, Ragnar. To demand is to forcibly command something from someone. I maintain that mostwelfare recipients request help and fill out forms, and hope they qualify.That is not a demand. Other than Keely Mullen, do you have any evidence of such demands? Or are those stereotypes from right-wing media?

  54. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem that poor people have is not that there are too many rich people. The problem is that they are essentially rewarded with welfare benefits if they keep being poor. I would also like to make note of the fact that the welfare state originated with the creation of the Great Society, as envisioned by the democrats. Poor people are not poor because wealthy people are wealthy. Being poor is more of a mindset than anything. Democrats are the problem. If more people got off of their butts and worked, either in places with now hiring signs or pursued self-employment, they would actually make money and be able to provide for themselves and their families and not need welfare. Welfare should be for people who fall on hard times only, not used as a career opportunity where people get money for doing nothing that is coming out of taxpayers’ pockets. Even if there is an argument that people who inherit wealth are also getting money for doing nothing, the transaction between the person(s) at death’s doorstep and any living family member(s) was done voluntarily. People who use their statuses as welfare beneficiaries are leeching off of the system and mooching off of the taxpayers and people who inherit wealth just want to hold on to what their family created. Outside of the taxes that are owed and all other financial transactions that are purely voluntary, no person has any right to another person’s wealth, period. When people are receiving welfare benefits, unless they contributed to a degree to these programs with their tax dollars, they are essentially getting free money from the government via our tax dollars. Welfare recipients are already getting free things and now they want more? Before the welfare state was created, people had the choice to want to help each other in time of need. With the welfare state, the government took over that job.

  55. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem is not that some people have too much money, what you say is more than enough money. The problem is that some people are too lazy to work for what they want. If someone falls on hard times, that person and his or her family will need help, yes, however, the issue is where the line is to be drawn between helping people who fall on hard times and enabling them to continue in a downward spiral. Despite the indoctrination that college aged people get subjected to that they are owed things in life, that they are entitled to various things because their teachers have drilled this notion into them, as well as politicians who promise them free stuff to gain their votes, the only things people have rights to are their right to life, their right to liberty, their right to the pursuit of happiness, as well as those spelled out in our U.S. Constitution. What I find truly absurd is when Leftists say that a family on welfare is more deserving of other people’s money than the family members of these people. Hoarding wealth? Even if some people do that, that is just too bad. These people should learn the skills to create their own. These idiots who demand free college can’t even articulate an effective argument to validate their position. Instead of complaining about wealth hoarders, these people should get off of their butts and learn how to create their own. You claimed that the rich have more than enough money. Even if someone has more money than another person, that should not stop the person with less money from wanting to make more. The 1% earned their money, so they shouldn’t have to be required to hand over that money to someone that didn’t work for it. If people cannot comprehend the costs associated with their demands, they should go back to school and retake courses in math. What does it matter if people who created wealth decide to hoard it?

    • Okay, Ragnar, you’ve told me hundreds of times your views on wealthy people and needy people.It’s pretty much the same message every time. We will never agree. Perhaps we need to move on to another topic.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, watch Mad Money with Jim Kramer. Look into Dave Ramsey. Read about how people have learned to save their money and who have made their mistakes along the way. Nobody owes anybody else anything in life, so issuing demands for things and not being able to articulate how one is deserving of these things is absurd. Helping people who need it is one thing. Enabling peopleto continue to stay in perpetual dependency does not do anybody any good.

        • Again, I don’t know of anybody demanding for things. That is your perception, but you don’t know it to be true. And Ragnar, you say you are in favor of helping people who need it, but don’t want to enable dependency. I agree with you. But how exactly do you differentiate?

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if I had a significant amount of land with a sizable garden and lived in an area that consisted of low and middle income families, the people could get all of the food that they needed until their situations improved. Basically, I would be charitable with my own money in a manner of speaking because I would have enough produce to supply grocery outlets and also benefit people who would not have the money to buy food during times of financial distress. The welfare state is the ultimate enabler of dependency.

          • I’m glad to hear of your generous intentions, Ragnar. Good for you. The government  also takes that responsibility in a democratic society. In fact, all other developed countries do that. Whether you consider that a “welfare state” is a matter of interpretation. I do not believe we are a welfare state, except maybe for billionaires and corporations.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if I ever had more money than I ever wanted, had so much that I could not spend it all in my lifetime, I would have no issue in giving it away. That is just my personal opinion.

          • Ragnar: I consider that basic human decency and commend you for it. However, I don’t understand why you don’t like that idea on a larger scale, which would help more people.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if the government does that, it does it via force. Where is the morality in the use of force to get someone to do something against his or her will?

          • No, Ragnar, a government collecting taxes is not considered force. Do you consider the taxes you pay for fire, police, military, infrastructure, etc. to be forced? Somebody has to pay for these services, and that is accepted by Americans (except for some ideologues). Sure, I don’t like paying so much for the military, but I accept that the job of determining that has to be done by duly elected representatives. We can’t all pick and choose which taxes we want to pay.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if the government took money from me via means of force and redistributed that wealth that I busted my butt for to someone who did nothing to deserve any right to it, it is theft. If that money was used to pay for infrastructure, to name one example, that is a separate issue.

          • The government takes money from you by force? I think that is called collecting taxes. Sure, I would like to change the way it is distributed, as we all would, but taxes are needed to fund the government.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, there is a difference between collecting taxes and arbitrarily taking money from people who work hard and redistributing that to other people. Government needs money to function. People also need money to live, however, welfare recipients are the beneficiaries of our money despite not doing any actual hard work.

          • Ragnar, you will have to explain to me the difference between the government collecting taxes, and arbitrarily taking money. I don’t see the difference. 

  56. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, we have people who bust their butts to earn a living and provide for the family members of these people and we have people who collect welfare and contributing nothing useful to society. When people on welfare claim that they see a segment of the population that is contributing nothing to society, they are speaking of themselves without realizing it. Essentially, they are also indirectly saying that the people who they claim are not contributing anything to society that these people are not contributing anything to support the lifestyles of people who make welfare a career opportunity instead of doing meaningful work.

    • Gosh, Ragnar, do you have any compassion in your heart? Sometimes unlucky people go through bad times and need help. Our society recognizes the need to help destitute, disabled, hungry children and other struggling citizens.
      All you seem to care about is not burdening well off people with taxes to help fellow citizens.

      By the way, are you aware the 1996 Welfare reform act limits welfare to five years? That makes it hard to make a career out of welfare.

      I would like to see you open your heart and recognize that some people, because they can’t make the rent and buy food as a result of illness or not being able to pay medical bills or being laid off the job or other unfortunate circumstance..

      Of course some people will abuse the system. Isn’t that true in any program anywhere But let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater. If you have any evidence that most people on public assistance are lazy moochers I would certainly like to see that evidence.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, between someone who uses the “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance” line as justification for the view that he or she is deserving of free stuff and a grieving family that keeps every penny of the wealth of a deceased loved one, the family members should have more right to that wealth, period. I would be far more sympathetic to the pain of a family that is contending with the loss of a loved one than I am with satisfying the demands of people who want their stuff to be financially supported by other people. Keely Mullen did not even look like she was starving, so she should go away and do something productive with her life. If someone is so concerned about what is happening regarding his or her family’s financial situation, that person should be willing to do something to help. Volunteer at an animal shelter. See if there is a job that does not even require a college degree to be able to work at it. Be sure to watch those videos that I shared with you.

  57. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I am more concerned with the national debt, people being hungry and homeless and the pain of a grieving family who is subjected to a tax bill during a time of emotional hardship and distress and not so concerned about people who claim that their family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to put their kids through college as an excuse to demand that college be free. Someone who is hungry and homeless is more deserving of our help and sympathy than a person who uses a sob story to get the things that he or she wants. People who complain about wealth hoarders would have a point if they busted their butts at the workplace that employed them and they were not compensated fairly according to their efforts. Other than that, most of the people who make that argument are being brainwashed by their professors and politicians who make promises of free stuff and give these people the message that they are owed everything in life. Instead of decrying the 1% as being wealth hoarders, go back to school and retake courses in math and economics. What about getting a part-time job at an animal shelter or as an assistant to a veterinarian? These people who want something for nothing deserve nothing. For all of the demands that are issued for free public college, I would say that the tuition keep going up, that way people who want it will actually have to work for it. Student loan debt is a problem, however, it is not a catastrophe for people who are willing to pay for their own stuff. The people who are demanding free stuff are being egotistical, just thinking about only themselves, all while not factoring in the costs to other people. The deer in headlights look that Keely Mullen provided in response to Neil Cavuto’s question as to how all of the stuff that Keely Mullen wanted was to be paid was also quite revealing. College tuition can be expensive, yes, so that point is stipulated, however, people should vote with their dollars. Why is it called greed to keep your money to yourself but not if you want someone else’s money? Why is someone who is given something voluntarily via an inheritance seen as being a moocher and yet someone who wants something for nothing is not? Why should the wealthy (many of whom did work their way up from the bottom) have to pay your college fee, something that doesn’t benefit them and doesn’t even involve them. The only reason people want socialism is because their too lazy to get a job or actually work. It also devalues the achievements of those who actually worked for it. You said that the rich have more than enough money. Who gets to decide if someone has too much money and who does not have enough?

  58. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, it seems to me that people who are issuing demands for free stuff have never been taught the value of hard work. They just parrot the talking points they pick up and assume that there is going to be an endless money flow to pay for all of the stuff they want. When Leftists gripe about people getting money that they did not earn via significant inheritance free of tax, that inheriting that much money will make them lazy and they will become leeches and moochers, there is not even any inclination to look at the people who are actually wanting something and finding every possible excuse to get out of paying for it. Progressive income tax is= punishing the hardworking and rewarding laziness. Why is there any incentive to work if other people are going to pick up the tab for you? Why should what one labors for in the hopes of being able to provide for that person and that person’s family be stolen from that person and that person’s family and arbitrarily redistributed to people who collect welfare and gripe about how unfair life is for them? The people demanding the freebies are a bunch of egotistical, whiny, entitled dopes who have never been taught the value of responsibility, nor the fact that they are not owed a damn thing in life. Why take responsibility for anything if all of your wants and needs are satisfied at the expense of, even the detriment to, other people?

  59. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, we have people who refuse to take any sort of responsibility for some of the financial hardship they experience. Just because some people are supposedly hoarding wealth is not going to stop other people from learning to create their own. Student loan debts come about due to people taking out those student loans in order to go to college. We also have people who are either financially illiterate because nobody took the time to educate them about how to manage money or are just looking for handouts because they are absolutely unwilling to do their part in solving their problems. Just because some people may have more money than other people does not mean that those with less will always be worse off.

    • I would say public assistance can sometimes lead a person out of poverty. In that way it is a good investment, as is having more people able to get a college education without going into enormous debt. Both good investments for our country and worth the cost.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, you make valid points.

        • We are in agreement so often, Ragnar, I’m beginning to wonder if you’ve caught the Covid-19 virus.😊

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, I agree with you on some things on principle. Here is an example: Wanting a better life for people living on a limited income and the poor. They need our help, yes, however, where should the line be drawn regarding helping them and keeping them in a state of dependency? This is the problem with the welfare state. That was supposed to be for people who fall on hard times only. What has come about as a result? It has been turned into a career opportunity that allows people to get something for nothing. Welfare benefits are also a disincentive to work, mainly due to the fact that if you earn money, you face a loss of benefits.

  60. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who work hard do so with the incentive to make money for themselves and their children, something that any person who has children would fully understand. Those who collect welfare and contribute nothing of any value should wake up and stop demanding that we cater to their every whim. You claimed that the girl in the video I linked was working to change an awful system. Why is it so awful when people are required to be responsible for their own paths in life and to not blame other people for their problems.

  61. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people should learn to be more responsible with their financial resources, not going to the 1%, even the 0.01% and asking them to bail the rest of us out of financial risks that we take with our money. If someone got rich due to his or her own merits, why is that person and the family of that person less deserving of that wealth than people who receive government subsidized welfare benefits and refuse to work because of the lost benefits as an end result? Outside of any form of voluntary financial transactions, no person has any right in absolute terms to the wealth of other people outside of the family members of these people. Personally, I would not be surprised if people who inherit wealth were more appreciative of it and responsible with that wealth than people whose money comes from government funded welfare programs. Why is it that some people argue that you getting wealth from someone makes you a leech and a moocher if it is done voluntarily, however, that accusation is not made against people who turn welfare into a career opportunity where these people get money for doing nothing to contribute to society? If you have a wealthy couple and that couple has no children, the wealthy couple would have no children to leave any assets to. If a person who is at death’s doorstep leaves all financial assets to living relatives of that person’s own volition, that is one thing. Why should that money be taken to support people who land on welfare because of bad, even harmful choices, that he or she has made? Progressives’ arguments that redistribution of wealth is done in the name of the greater good is laughable. What good does it do to take something that does not belong to you and redistribute that to a select group of other people? It makes the person who takes that wealth by force a thief and the recipients have a sense of entitlement to something that they do not deserve. Rather than grabbing money from people because the people doing the grabbing feel like the people they take money from have more than enough, these people should just mind their own business. Helping people who need it is one thing. Just saying that someone has more money than he or she needs and could ever spend, which may be true, is indicative of an entitlement mentality, where some people feel like they are entitled to what other people have.

  62. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even if some people got wealth via an inheritance, the inherited wealth was received via a voluntary financial transaction with after tax wealth. Even if someone does inherit money, somebody had to work hard for it and if they want to leave their hard earned money/wealth to someone else, that’s their prerogative. How much wealth someone has should be nobody’s business outside of that person’s family. Our government punishes wise people and rewards fools. We punish people who work hard with high taxes and reward people who produce nothing with tax-free welfare benefits. There is no such thing as hoarding of wealth and people who make the argument that there is are just too lazy to learn the skills to create their own. progressive income tax=punishing the hardworking and rewarding laziness. Many people argue that inheriting wealth will make people lazy. Really? That wealth will have to be spent eventually. Why should it be given to the government?

  63. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, who is more deserving of being the recipient(s) of the fruits of someone’s labor-the person who gets compensated for the service provided and that person’s family or people who demand handouts and feel like they are entitled to that which they have no right to? Progressives are lazy and want to live off the backs of others, as is being indicated by their demanding that things be provided to them at the expense of other people and displaying a disingenuous sense of moral outrage when things don’t go the way they want. I find it to be rather absurd that Leftists can’t tell the difference between someone who earned his or her riches with hard work and good choices and someone who cheated the system to gain unfair advantages over everyone else. Progressive tax is not used to fund the government, just used to redistribute wealth from the people who created it in order to give it to people under the false and disingenuous notion of fairness. People who make the accusation that other people are hoarding wealth and causing a catastrophic student loan debt debacle for people should stop blaming the rich for their problems. I am more concerned with people being hungry and homeless than I am with satisfying the demands of people who want free stuff. No matter how rich anyone is, they should not be obligated to pay for another person’s stuff, period.

    • This country, Ragnar, has real problems which will not be solved unless we all work to fix them. Rigid idealogical rules are of no help. The wealthy keep adding to their wealth while most Americans are struggling to Make a living. Today the richest one percent in the U.S. own more wealth than the bottom 90%. This is unsustainable and the wealthy in this country need to pitch in with a couple of percent more taxes. I don’t think they’ll starve.
      Sure, some poor people will take advantage of this system but that goes on everywhere. Many rich people take advantages by using tax loopholes and holding their money offshore.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the tax code is what is encouraging this behavior that you speak of, however, that would be lost on many people. Here are 3 questions for you: 1: Who should have more rights to the money of deceased people-people who collect welfare and demand free stuff and handouts and produce nothing or the family members of these people? 2: Even though they both are not earned, can you not see the blatant double-standard between decrying people who inherit wealth as getting something that they have not earned and yet advocating for free public college and people not doing anything to earn that? 3: Since all inherited wealth comes to people on a voluntary basis, how are the recipients considered as being leeches and moochers since that wealth was voluntarily transacted and yet people who demand that we pay for all of their stuff are not seen as leeches or moochers?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the tax code is a contributing factor.

  64. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” If someone has more money than I do, it is not going to negatively impact me if I have enough money for basic things. What I find to be absurd is how we have people who pay 0% in federal income tax and yet they say that high income earners don’t pay their fair share. Progressives are lazy and want to live off the backs of others, something that is clearly indicated when they call for forced redistribution of wealth from one group of people to another. Even if someone inherits money, somebody had to work hard for it and if they want to leave their hard earned money/wealth to someone else, that’s their prerogative. The progressive income tax was conceived by Karl Marx, a Communist, which has made its way to our shores despite the fact that we are a Constitutional Republic, not a Communist dictatorship. Why is some spoiled brat who whines about wanting free things more deserving of the money of people who worked hard and not the family members of these people? You claim to favor the estate tax and argue that people who inherit wealth/estates did nothing to earn that, however, you also advocate free college. Your thinking is profoundly inconsistent, as is that of every person who wants something both ways. What is hurting the poor more than anything is the government programs that are intended to help them because these people are on those programs are not given an incentive to want to get out. Poor people are not poor because the wealthy are wealthy. Being poor is more a mindset than anything. Any person can provide moral arguments for the redistribution of wealth, however, if it is done via immoral acts like taking that wealth by force from one group of people and redistributing it to other people, it is theft, with theft being a criminal offense. Progressives are closet Communists who decided to re-brand themselves in a more appealing light to dupe a lot of people into buying into their b.s. arguments about fairness. The people on welfare want progressive tax, and the people who actually work to make money want a fair tax system. That’s all there is to it.

  65. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be rather humorous when Leftists say that people who inherit massive wealth will become lazy and do nothing useful with their lives and not contribute anything to society. Without rich people, how are the rest of us going to be employed? What about people who collect welfare and demand handouts? They contribute absolutely nothing to society, so by what right do they get to complain about some people contributing nothing? I don’t get why people want to always tax the wealthy. Do I think it is unfair that 1/2 dozen people control 90% of the world’s wealth? Perhaps, however, it is more unfair to demand that they pay for all of the stuff that we want because some people are just too damn lazy to do anything to help themselves. You said that students take out college loan because they have no choice. Actually, yes, they do have a choice. They have the choice to wait until they can make enough money to pay for their own stuff. Rather than assign blame to other people for the woes that one has and use that as an excuse to act like he or she is deserving of free stuff, these people should have all of it taken away from them and actually be sat down and shown the numbers and what the final price tag is going to be as a result of their demands. When will these people wake up? How long will it be before they actually understand that they are not always going to get things their way? There is free college in this world, even Harvard or MIT is free. It’s called US military 4 years contract. Serve your country and your country will pay for your college. Of course, that is going to be asking too much of these snowflakes when they get told that they will have to work their way to their desired goals, not expect other people to take care of them. Quite honestly, I would prefer that family heirs get tax-free wealth than people get to go to college on the taxpayers’ dime. When you sign a paper saying you will pay money back, you are obligated to pay what you owe. It’s your responsibility. No person in his or her right mind would demand that his or her stuff be financially subsidized by other people.

  66. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be rather humorous when Leftists say that people who inherit massive wealth will become lazy and do nothing useful with their lives and not contribute anything to society. Without rich people, how are the rest of us going to be employed? What about people who collect welfare and demand handouts? They contribute absolutely nothing to society, so by what right do they get to complain about some people contributing nothing? I don’t get why people want to always tax the wealthy. Do I think it is unfair that 1/2 dozen people control 90% of the world’s wealth? Perhaps, however, it is more unfair to demand that they pay for all of the stuff that we want because some people are just too damn lazy to do anything to help themselves. You said that students take out college loan because they have no choice. Actually, yes, they do have a choice. They have the choice to wait until they can make enough money to pay for their own stuff. Rather than assign blame to other people for the woes that one has and use that as an excuse to act like he or she is deserving of free stuff, these people should have all of it taken away from them and actually be sat down and shown the numbers and what the final price tag is going to be as a result of their demands.
    college education has risen well past inflation and is unaffordable for many

  67. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I would not object to the idea of Medicare For All due to my tax dollars paying for that. However, I find it to be objectionable that I would have to pay for someone else’s kid(s) to go to college. People who promote a wealth tax are advocating double taxation, as are the people who advocate estate taxes.We should stop worrying about the rich having more money and actually help the poor have a better quality of life.

  68. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I believe in being generous and charitable with my own resources. Those who speak to and advocate for forced wealth redistribution believe in being generous and charitable with the money of other people. You claim that the rich have more than enough money, as well as some people having obscene amounts. Did it never occur to you that this wealth came about through hard work, sensible investments and overall cutting of costs and not just due to inheritance? It makes no sense to me why we penalize savings and investment via the tax code. With these proposals for a wealth tax, that would break the economy. Hemorrhaging debt is of more concern to me personally than satisfying the demands of people for free things. This is why people make fun of millennials. They have this entitlement mentality where they feel like they are owed something in life. If a person is intelligent enough to become a multimillionaire, that person should not have his or her wealth redistributed to people who collect welfare and don’t do a damn thing but complain about how unfair life is.

  69. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, given the track record our government has with managing our tax dollars, which has not always been good, I am of the belief that the government does not deserve anymore. The problem with the mindset of Leftists is that they see someone with great wealth and someone with little wealth and assume that the circumstances for the person with less has been as a result of the person who just happens to have more. If we went with a wealth tax, a proposal supported by many people, what would happen if the people who are the intended targets of that tax just spent themselves into a state of financial ruin? Instead of worrying about some people having more money, we should help the people who have less. People who advocate for a wealth tax are the same people who bought or perpetuated the lie that the income tax when it came into being was going to target only the rich. On what grounds is a person who demands free stuff more deserving of the wealth that was created of another person? Instead of grabbing torches and pitchforks and beating down the doors of rich people, those who do that should learn a skill set that will make them money in the long run. Of course, if someone is a welfare recipient, that person will probably elect to stay on welfare because of the loss of benefits if they make money. Welfare should be for people who legitimately fall on hard times, not used by its recipients as a career opportunity where they can make money by doing nothing. If one family is making a decent living and is not hurting financially, why should that family have any right to demand that a family with more money give it to the family with less? If people actually paid attention during math class and economic class, they would probably learn more about how money actually works. We do not have too many millionaires and billionaires, just too few of them, as well as the burdensome national debt. You claim that the rich have more than enough money? Attitudes like that stem from people who want to take things that don’t belong to them and do it at the expense of other people. Most of these idiots who whine about the 1% hoarding the wealth are just looking for excuses to take that money because they are too damn lazy to get ahead in life. Leftists say that people who inherit wealth will just let it sit in their bank accounts and never work a day in their lives. Just because someone will have money in a bank account does not mean that it will sit there and not be used.

  70. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone knowingly makes bad monetary decisions that results in financial ruin for that person and that person’s family despite being told repeatedly what would be the end result of said decisions, I would not have much sympathy for said person. Nor would I have sympathy for a person who uses the line about how his or her family is on numerous forms of of government assistance line as justification for wanting free public college. Someone who falls on hard times economically due to factors beyond his or her control is a separate matter. Tuition-free college should be provided as a reward for service to one’s country, not by the demands of a person for free public college who is unwilling to do the bare minimum to make that opportunity possible. Our national debt is of greater concern to me than satisfying the demands of some dopes who act like they are entitled to free stuff and bitch and complain when they don’t get things their way. Medicare For All is something I can support because that is what my tax dollars pay for. Being required to support people financially who use their status as welfare recipients to demand free stuff is something I find distasteful. Regarding people who are contributing nothing to society, welfare recipients fit that category.

  71. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, this idea of evening out wealth in the name of fairness is absurd. The rich pay the lion’s share of the nation’s tax burden. I am not unsympathetic to people who fall on hard times economically. Having said that, my sympathy ends when people use the “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to get me through college” line in an attempt to manipulate the rest of us into paying for what these people want. Rather than gripe about your family’s situation on live television, maybe these people should put their gadgets away and do something to help make their family’s situation better. Most wealth is created by entrepreneurs. They create companies that hire most of us. They also provide goods like the i phone, word processor, and even cancer drugs. Would we prefer a world where everyone was more equal but we were trying to fight cancer with 1960s medicine? Taxing wealth encourages people not to become wealthy and thus not to invest or start companies.

  72. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that a billionaire who is taken from $10, 000, 000, 000.00 to 1, 000, 000, 000 is still going to have a monumental amount of wealth after taxes. Having said that, if a rich person’s wealth came to him or her by satisfying the wants and needs of other people, the person should be able to keep a good percentage of that wealth. At the risk of invoking Biblical arguments against wealth redistribution, we are told not to covet anything that belongs to our neighbor(s). That can be land, food, money, whatever.

  73. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be humorous when Leftists say that people being given something makes the recipients leeches and moochers when they get something that they did not earn via an inheritance free of tax and yet these very people defend giving away free college? If the hypocrisy in their thinking was explained to them, they still would not get it. Outside of the right to life, the right to liberty, the right to pursue happiness, as well as those spelled out in the Declaration of Independence and our U.S. Constitution, all other rights are just man-made and not actually legitimate. How are the 1% not contributing to society?

  74. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, as long as people keep voting for democrats who will promise them free stuff, they will always be living in poverty. Lyndon B. Johnson’s Great Society was not meant to help anybody. The goal was essentially to legally enslave people by making them dependent upon the government through welfare programs. This was further expanded to encompass people of other ethnic backgrounds.

  75. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, we have people who pay a greater percentage of the tax burden than the rest of us do. However, we also have people who contribute nothing. If someone who falls on hard times really needs help, that is one thing. Someone who claims to be on numerous forms of government assistance and is still capable of working a physical job is just looking for a handout and makes excuses as to why he or she cannot get ahead in life. We also have people who are financially illiterate.

  76. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, it is absurd to my why some people feel like they are entitled to the money of other people. Life is not fair and these people who sit and demand free stuff should be required to look at the accumulated expenses that come as a result of all of their demands. People who are on numerous forms of government assistance are already getting free stuff. Now they want even more? The rich, even if they have the money to afford it, should not be required to fork over any money that they have to pay for some brat that has a me, me, me mentality and is unwilling to do the bare minimum to help themselves along the way toward their desired goals. Maybe getting a job could be a solution to deal with the costs of tuition, books, food, room and board for these people.

    • Your use of stereotyping, Ragnar, is incredible. No wonder you believe so strongly in these matters: you see all rich people as wonderful and deserving of as much money as they can accumulate, and all poor people as lazy moochers who don’t deserve help . In the real world, it’s not that simple.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, it is more simple than you think. Keely Mullen was telling a sob story in the video I linked in order to get the things that she wanted-that being free college, student loan debt cancellation, as well as a $15.00 an hour minimum wage. When she spoke of people contributing nothing to society, she was speaking of herself and her family without even realizing it, as well as people who are on government funded welfare programs. If someone has a legitimate medical disability that is an impediment to certain activities like driving, that person can pay for a taxi service to get that person to the place he or she needs or wants to be, can take a community bus, can take a train, even walk to that place. Sitting on one’s butt and demanding that things be given to that person would not bode well in the minds of people who actually bust their butts. This tax the rich scheme is not about doing things to benefit society. Just used in an attempt to buy the votes of certain people. Keely Mullen looked to well dressed to be able to receive welfare benefits that the rest of us are paying for. We have people who turn welfare into a career opportunity where people get money for doing nothing and get their money at the expense of the taxpayers. At least Medicare, Medicaid, as well as Social Security are being paid for and that is something I have no issue with. For the record, I have no problem helping any person who falls on hard times financially. Where that ends is if the person is either telling a sob story to garner sympathy or is just looking for an excuse to get something that is undeserved.

        • ragnarsbhut says:

          Arlen Grossman, I said my when I meant to put me. Can you edit that word to read me and then delete this comment?

        • Interesting you say ” I have no problem helping any person who falls on hard times financially.” How can you tell the difference? It would require a lot of work to investigate.Of course, nobody wants to help people who abuse the system. I don’t think as many people do that, while you mostly imply everyone is doing it (because they highlight such things in the right-wing media machine e.g.. Keely Mullin, who represents only herself).
          No, not that many people are sitting on their butt and demanding things, despite what you have heard (unless you have evidence that I haven’t seen). Most people have just run into bad luck, and a little compassion is called for, not just criticism.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if I saw someone who was starving and looked like he or she had eaten very little because of monetary restrictions, I would be perfectly willing to give that person food. If someone implies that his or her family is scraping by to put him or her through college, why is that person so unwilling to do something to help the cause? Just whining about the fact that college is too expensive is absurd. Vote with your money. Just don’t act like you are entitled to take money from other people. What if you have someone who loves animals? That person could volunteer his or her time at an animal shelter or a vet to take care of the animals for a negotiated fee for the time being contributed.

  77. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem is not that we have too many rich people, just that we have too few. If we have more rich people, then we would have more people to tax, which results in more money for the government.

  78. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, why should self-made multimillionaires be obligated to redistribute their wealth to people who collect welfare and do not produce anything of any benefit to society? Wanting to help people who fall on hard times is one thing. Enabling them to continue on a downward spiral by catering to them and giving into all of their demands is another. Not all wealth is inherited. Some people work their butts of for the wealth that they have. If I did not make millions, however, I was not hurting financially either, I would not envy the person who has more. Progressives are not interested in fairness. Just because some people are financially irresponsible should not mean that other people should be required to bail them out. Why do you think people who work hard to provide for their families are less entitled to that money than people who make welfare a career opportunity where they get money for doing nothing. To be generous and charitable with one’s own resources is one thing. Being generous and charitable with resources that belong to other people is different. Why do you think a family that collects welfare and wants free stuff deserve something that another family has earned? People who whine that other people are hoarding wealth, which is absurd due to the fact that a lot of wealthy people bust their butts to earn that wealth, are just looking for an excuse to justify living a lifestyle where they can be irresponsible and demand that other people satisfy all of their wants and needs. Rich people are rich because they are smart with their money and vote for people who will enact policies that help them to become wealthier. Poor people vote for democrats and they are still poor.

  79. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem we have is politicians on the Left who make these promises of free stuff. If poor people stopped being poor and worked their way out of poverty, they would no longer be dependent on welfare for their survival. Democrats want more poor people. Republicans want fewer or no poor people. When you asked why the rich keep getting richer and the poor are getting poorer, your question is laced with falsehoods.

  80. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I believe in rewarding people who work hard, not subsidizing the lifestyles of people who collect welfare and make that a career opportunity. Talk about getting money for doing nothing.

    • That is okay, but I don’t believe it’s that simple, Ragnar. Not all rich people have worked hard for their money. Not all people who take welfare are lazy and shiftless. Fairness depends on the individual circumstances. Stereotyping is not helpful.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I am not necessarily opposed to the estate tax if done on a state by state basis. However, at the federal level, I would like to see it eliminated.

  81. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who work hard do so to make money for themselves and their family members. I would prefer that the kids reap the benefits of their parents’ hard work, even if the kids did nothing to earn that money themselves. Here is the hypocrisy that many Leftists engage in. They say that it is wrong for the children of people who work hard to reap the rewards of their parents’ labor, however, they are all too happy to provide freebies to people who sit on their butts and do nothing. Wanting to help people in need is commendable, however, it is not always easy to know if someone actually needs help or if that person is feigning a state of hardship to get someone to cater to that person’s demands. You had asked why the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The answer is simple: People who get rich will vote for the candidates that enact policies that help these people become wealthy and poor people will vote for the candidates who will provide them with free stuff and keep them in a state of perpetual dependence upon the government. Why take responsibility for one’s own path in life if the government is going to provide for all of our wants and needs? This is the problem with people who talk about free public college. If someone wants free public college, serve time in any branch of the armed forces and the country will pay for your college. Just demanding it without providing any rational argument to validate your position makes the person issuing the demands look stupid.

    • Ragnar, the rich get rich because they own most politicians. Do you really believe that poor people can contribute to candidates in anywhere near the amount the 1% can. Why do you think we keep getting laws favorable to the rich? They always get their way because they control the political system. Surely you must see this.

  82. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if one person has a stagnant income, however, that person has accumulated a lot in long-term savings and another person has a significant income and no savings to speak of, why should the person who has more in savings be required to give that money away? If someone has more financial assets than I do, however, I am not hurting financially, then it is of no relevance to me. If someone has millions, however, I have $350, 000.00, that person has more than I do, however, I am not hurting financially. This is the problem with Leftists. They want to build up some people and tear down other people in the process.

    • The way I see it, Ragnar,, You are the one building up a group (the wealthy) and tearing down another (the dissdvantaged).

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, instead of worrying about how much money other people have, live your own life and make the best of it. No person has any right to the wealth that other people have worked for, however, that person’s family should have all rights to it.

        • What if they accumulated much of their money by inheritance, favorable laws and tax cuts given them by their bought-and-paid-for politicians? The rich keep getting richer, while the rest of us are trying to tread water. Is that good for our country? Of course not.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, what if someone does not inherit physical assets? What if it is a family business? Should the person be required to sell the business in order to satisfy the tax liability?

  83. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even if I never earned millions of dollars, I do not begrudge or envy people who do. There is no such thing as wealth hoarding. Regarding catastrophic student loan debts that some people complain about, if they are college students that signed up for the student loans, they should deal with them. Bill Gates and George Soros having a lot of money is not causing me any financial hardship, nor would it cause other people financial hardship who are actually willing to work, not sit and collect welfare and contributing nothing. Destroying the wealthy will not elevate the poor. Everyone will end up being poor. The only way out of poverty is through education and the development of marketable skills. Is redistributing wealth so that a billionaire has only a few million destroying him or her? Not likely. The problem is that we have people are all too happy to demand that the rich pay for all of the stuff that they want. As for all of the demands that people who want free stuff want to make, they should be shown on paper what all of the costs amount to in order to pay for their “free” stuff. I am not unsympathetic to the suffering and hardship that people who fall on hard times endure generally speaking. However, I have little sympathy for a person who uses the “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to put me through college.” People should learn to take some initiative to get where they want in life. Why is it that someone being given something, even if it is unearned, labeled as a moocher and any person who wants other people to pay for his or her stuff not seen as a moocher? What is it with these people who decry the 1% hoarding wealth and causing catastrophic student loan debt that is incurred by other people? Seems to me that people who make that argument are just too damn lazy to solve their own problems. There is the likely possibility that at least inherited wealth will be put to some use, not sit and go unspent.

    • I don’t know why you spend so much time on this subject, Ragner. Why are you so interested in protecting the wealth of the one percent? Millions of Americans go hungry every day, and about 1 in 5 children. That’s a bad reflection of a rich country of ours. I never seem to hear much compassion or sympathy from you, But you don’t spare any sympathy for the rich.
      You constantly criticize young people with college debts. I believe more American should go to college. That would be good for our society and should be encouraged and made affordable for those who want it. My sympathies extend to the disadvantaged rather than billionaires who never like paying taxes.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, it is not the college debts in and of themselves that I am critical of, just the fact that the people who take them on refuse to be accountable for them. There is a difference between them.

        • Students take out college loan Because use they have no choice. The cost of a
          college education has risen well past inflation and is unaffordable for many.. what a sad commentary on our nation’s priorities. Other countries are smarter by subsidizing or making college free.. We have much to learn.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, here is an example of a double-standard for you: We have people who demand free college for themselves even though they have done nothing to deserve any right to it and yet these people would complain that those who inherit millions of dollars did nothing to earn that either. Apply some common sense here. 2 different situations are in this example, however, the same principle applies. If college should be free, then inheritance should also be free.

  84. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, regardless of what some collectivist thinking people may believe, wealth that is created privately belongs to its creator(s) and no person has any right to arbitrarily take it and decide that the creator(s) of that wealth are undeserving of any right to it. Walter Williams said, “Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we’d call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that’s exactly what thieves do-redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders’ vision, it’s a sin in the eyes of God.” Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” The problem with Leftist thinking is in the notion that all wealth is ill-gotten. Why is this the case?

  85. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here are videos for you: 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sd-ElKMbPI, 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGuNpqYBkZk, 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KBGo2nojiek, 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CKbRIo-DTA People should stop this obsessive fixation with how much money other people have.

    • I think Americans should pay attention to how much money others have. That is because in our wealthy country about 40% of Americans
      Ilive in poverty while a handful have billions. The wealth is being transferred to the rich. This is wrong.You seem to think that the wealthy earned their money and the poor are greedy moochers. In reality many of the 1% inherited their wealth. And most of those in poverty never had the advantages you have and society has the means to help them. I don’t want to live in a Darwinian capitalist society where many are impoverished and others have more money than they know what to do with.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I do not think the poor are greedy moochers. The problem is in the hypocrisy of people who decry the issue of other people inheriting wealth free of tax and yet these very people demand free public college. If I have enough money to be in a state of financial security, however, someone has more than I do, I have no moral right to take any of that money at all.

        • Clearly your concern is not the benefit of society but rather an ideological defense of having the rich keep their money. That is where we differ.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, here are questions for you: 1: Who is more deserving of free college-someone who served in the armed forces and got that as a reward or someone who complains about the cost associated with it and uses that as justification for getting it? 2: Who is more responsible for catastrophic student loan debts associated with college education-the rich or the people who signed the admission papers?

  86. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if all of the people who claim that the rich have more than enough money came across millions of dollars themselves, they would argue against government taking their fortunes away. Redistribution of wealth is theft unless it is done due to a voluntary exchange.

    • When all the rules and laws favor the wealthy, because they have money and lobbyists and they can buy the votes of politicians, and the result is they keep getting richer while working people are barely scraping by (if they are lucky), then you have a rigged political system. In your world, Ragnar, everything is simple. But in the real world, it isn’t that simple, which is why our inequality is the highest of any developed country and the highest in our history.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, like I said, rich people don’t get rich by being stupid with their money. While it is true that some people get rich due to a ripoff of other people, it is also true that people who become rich work their butts off for that wealth. Can you explain, even justify the hypocrisy of people who claim that someone getting money due to inheritance, which may be true, is less deserving of that than someone who wants free public college? You can’t have it both ways.

        • I’m sure this will be immediately rejected by you, but government is instituted for the greater good of society. Free (or not free) collaged is a benefit for our society..The extra money for the rich does not help society.

  87. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you asked why the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The reason poor people stay poor is because of the welfare benefits they receive if they elect not to find any meaningful work. Financial illiteracy is another problem. People should be paying attention to Jim Kramer, Dave Ramsey, Walter Williams, F.A. Hayek, Thomas Sowell and Milton Friedman if they want to learn about money, economics and debt-related things. What I find to be amusing is how Leftists believe that someone getting something that he or she has not earned via an inheritance makes the recipients moochers and yet people who demand that their “free” stuff be paid for by other people. No person has the right to vote on how much money other people have. Envy is the motivating factor behind the arguments that Progressives make for extracting wealth from one group of people and redistributing it to another. The top 1% do not hoard wealth. They invest their wealth in the economy. Just because neither you or I or any other person are not the recipients of the wealth that the 1% created does not mean that they hoard it. Rather than sit and receive handouts because they are too lazy to do anything, people should get off of their butts and try to find some meaningful employment, either part-time or full-time in an area that suits their talents or interests. Heck, if you have someone who has a great love of animals, that person can volunteer at a vet or an animal shelter and earn some money that way. Computer sales and repairs are also an option or anything that is mechanical. Here is a question for you: Why is someone who wants free college more deserving of that than people who inherit already taxed wealth from any deceased family member(s) from whom that money was transacted voluntarily? Even if that money was not earned, it is indicative of a profound hypocrisy when people who demand free things label someone who inherits money free of tax as being a leech and a moocher. People who collect welfare and contribute nothing and demand free college are the true leeches and moochers, not people who inherit money. If I went flat broke because of a bad business plan that was of my own design, I would not lay any blame for my financial issues on anybody else. Wanting to help people who fall on hard times due to no fault of their own is one thing. Someone who uses a sob story about alleged financial hardship and using that as an excuse to demand free stuff is just a tactic of manipulation. Keely Mullen looked too well dressed to be to claim a state of financial hardship. If we did not have the welfare state, there would be no welfare fraud.

  88. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the money that a multimillionaire has is not wreaking havoc in my life, nor would it impair the ability of people who work hard to earn a living and keep them from earning any money. Billionaires don’t have a big vault in their bedrooms holding all of their money. It is largely invested in the economy. We need to fix how the government uses money, not give them more. We are supposed to have equal opportunity, not equal outcome. No one owes another person anything in absolute terms. Who even said wealth inequality is bad? I mean as long as you have the money to live a decent life, why would some people obsess about other people having more money than they do? That just makes them greedy. Why are some people so concerned about the wealth that other people own? Why do some people think they are more deserving of the money that other people work for than the family members of that person? Why should we penalize people for making more responsible choices with their financial assets and reward people who are financially irresponsible? Why would you possibly think you have a right to take anyone else’s money just because they have it? Let’s go to a straight consumption based tax. The more you buy, the more you pay. Simple.

  89. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who go on live TV and issue demands for various things have no clue as to the costs of their “free” stuff. Someone who wants free college should serve 4 years in any branch of the armed forces and get the free college as a reward. Otherwise, just demanding it be free because one cannot afford the tuition is a sign of someone who is too damn lazy to work for what he or she wants. People who come across great wealth, be it earned or inherited, are not hoarding anything. Nor are they responsible for the student loan debt crisis by people who attend a university. 1% of the population may hold more wealth than the 99% combined, however, if that wealth came about as a result of satisfying the demands of people who purchase products that the 1% contributed to creating, why are some people envious of that? You say that fairness is what motivates the arguments that the rich should pay more in taxes. Progressives have a convoluted notion of fairness. Regarding the people who complain about the fact that there are people who do nothing to contribute to society, are these people too clueless to not realize that they are speaking of themselves? Want to know why so many countries go to hell in a hand basket financially? It is a combination of Socialist policies and meeting the demands of their citizens for free stuff.

    • Your response would sound better if there were fairness in our capitalist system. But there isn’t. It is more a Darwinian system where the rich have all the advantages.
      I have no problem with the government leveling the field. Isn’t that what government is supposed to do: provide life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? Happiness is hard to find when one is hungry, sick, and lacking money. The wealthy won’t provide it, so all of us acting together (government) can make a happier, fairer America. Is that so bad? In my view, democratic socialism is a better system than unbridled capitalism. I’m sure you will feel differently.

  90. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I fail to see why it is indefensible for people who inherit money from their parents tax-free and yet democrats have no problem giving free stuff to people at the expense of the rest of us. To take money from people who worked hard to earn it and redistribute it to people who have done nothing to deserve it is convoluted. “But wait, people who inherit wealth have done nothing to earn it,” will be the claim that some people make. Those who want free public college have not done anything to earn that either. Where a distinction is to be made is that those who actually want free stuff for themselves do not give any thought to the costs incurred by other people to satisfy the demands of the people who want free stuff. So people who are demanding free stuff want to use compulsion to get that and people who are gifted any monetary assets get those through a consensual financial transaction. Why is someone who works hard to earn a living and to provide for that person’s family and that person’s family less entitled to the fruits that are produced and people who collect welfare are more entitled to it? Personally, I would be more sympathetic to the plight of a starving person than I would be to a person who uses that person’s status as a welfare beneficiary as justification for wanting free things, as well as being more sympathetic to the pain of a grieving family who loses a loved family member. Griping about other people having more money than oneself and wanting to take it away is a sign of someone who is too lazy to do anything but sit and collect welfare and uses a sob story to get people to pay for that person’s stuff.

    • Ragnar, ou seem to believe rich people deserve as much money as they can get, and disadvantaged people all want free money and are all lazy moochers. That is a narrow view of the world, not true, and sounds prejudiced.

  91. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, several studies indicate that the rich work very hard for their wealth. The rich are not sitting by the pool, sipping their cocktails; they are sitting in their offices, working their behinds off. The way I see it, if someone got wealthy due to his or her own merits, that person should reap the rewards. Unlike welfare recipients who sit and demand free stuff, the rich actually provide a great deal of benefits to society with the work that they do. When all taxes have been paid to the satisfaction of the government, neither the government or people who whine about wealth hoarders and use their positions as welfare recipients to indicate that they deserve the money of the rich more than the rich do would have any right to it.

  92. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone has a talent for working with technological things, however, that person has some medical disabilities that would make driving not an option, that person could very easily find a place of residence that is in walking distance to that person’s job. We have a segment of people who have never been taught the value of working hard to get what they want in life. If someone has earned more money than another and earned it honestly, why should that person have less right to that wealth than a person who sits and does nothing useful with his or her life? Walter Williams said, “Three-fifths to two-thirds of the federal budget consists of taking property from one American and giving it to another. Were a private person to do the same thing, we’d call it theft. When government does it, we euphemistically call it income redistribution, but that’s exactly what thieves do-redistribute income. Income redistribution not only betrays the founders’ vision, it’s a sin in the eyes of God.” Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Why are people who work a 9:00 to 5:00 job considered as being greedy for wanting to keep that which they earn and want to use to provide for their families and people who sit and ask for handouts and demand free stuff not seen as being greedy? Who even said wealth inequality is bad? As long as someone has the money to live a decent life, why should it matter if someone else has more? The government spends too much money as it is, so why are we trying to give them more?

    • You say: “As long as someone has the money to live a decent life, why should it matter if someone else has more?” Since about 12% of the country is in poverty (about 40 million Americans). It probably matters to them. Jeff Bezos is close to being a trillionaire. Couldn’t that be spread about more with a higher tax rate on the wealthy?

  93. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, we have $20, 000, 000, 000, 000+ in debt and yet we have people who think that we can still pay for all of the free stuff that some people want? How much more debt do we have to acquire before these people wake up? $40, 000, 000, 000, 000.00? $50, 000, 000, 000, 000.00? We should be more concerned with the national debt than satisfying the demands of people for free stuff. Billionaires don’t have a big vault in their bedrooms holding all of their money. It is largely invested in the economy.

    • Republicans decried Obama for running a deficit. But now that they are in charge, they.have no problem with running up the debt. And Ragnar, if you look at where the relief money is going, you’ll find that big corporations are the major benefactors, not the greedy, lazy underclass you are always talking about.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I never said the underclass itself was lazy. Just the people who want the rest of us to pay for their stuff. Keely Mullen is the perfect example of this. She and the rest of the people like her just want the rest of us to cater to them and give in to their demands. Democrats have no real plans to make any of this free stuff a reality. Just using that to dupe people into voting for them.

        • Of course people will abuse any system, whether they are rich or poor. Just because Fox News trots out one extreme example (Kelly Mullin) does mean she represents all people who need government assistance.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, you had said that people who inherit wealth did not earn it. However, people who just issue demands for free college did not earn that either. Different scenarios, yes, however, the same principle applies.

  94. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, those who have an obsessive fixation with the amount of wealth owned by other people are not interested in making a better life for themselves, just a desire to take the wealth and use it for their own ends. The 1% of the population is hoarding wealth and causing the catastrophic student loan debt crisis that college attendees face? Give me a damn break. We don’t need to evenly redistribute wealth. Where is the incentive to work if all that one busts his or her butt for is going to be taxed and redistributed to welfare recipients who gripe about how unfair life is for them? If those who support redistribution of wealth were given billion dollars worth of assets right now, it is my guess that most of these hypocrites would immediately turn into all-out capitalists and desperately argue against the government taking their fortunes away.

  95. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you made an inquiry as to why the rich are getting richer and the poor are becoming poorer. It is very simple. The poor keep voting for the people who promise them free stuff if the poor people keep staying poor. The rich vote for people who will support their endavors in the pursuit of wealth.

  96. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, wealth “hoarding” is just a figment of the imagination of people who use that talking point. How did Bill Gates make his billions of dollars? The man made that much money by providing a good and service to satisfy the wants and needs of the people through the creation of Microsoft? Why is someone who is rich less entitled to his or her money than a bunch of welfare recipients who refuse to do anything but sit on their butts and demand that their desires be fulfilled by other people?

    • wealth hoarding is not imaginary, Ragnar. The gap between the rich and the rest of us keeps getting bigger. As an example, the top 1% now own more wealth than the bottom 90%. The rich keep getting a bigger share while many Americans struggle to eat and keep a roof over their head. Does that seem good to you?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, sure it is. I am more concerned with people being hungry and homeless than I am with people who demand that we pay for their college educations, as well as other things that they want. Do I view it as wrong for people to tell those who live in poverty that they are on their own? Absolutely. The problem is in how to distinguish people who are legitimately experiencing hardship and people who make that claim in order to get us to pay for their stuff.

        • True, it is not easy to know who really needs help. But I don’t spend time worrying about it. Nobody on public assistance is rich or.destroying our country. The money I worry about goes to military aid that we don’t need, and endless tax breaks for the rich. You worry most about poor people, I worry most about people who already have plenty of money getting more.

  97. In your harsh world, Ragnar, there seems to be two kinds of people: the rich,capitalists, who deserve billions of dollars (even if the they inherited it, or took advantage of favorable laws and tax breaks, or cheated people to get their wealth). They can do no wrong in your eyes.
    Then there are the “others,” poor often brown people who steal from the rich, because they are lazy, drug addicts, and live off the dole. Never mind that many of them are families going through hard times.maybe they were laid off or couldn’t pay a hospital bill. But maybe they can.be salvaged if they pull themselves up by their bootstraps.
    Having a worldview like that simplifies life , there is only black and white, never grey. No need to worry about anybody.
    Bottom line the problems we face are the fault of those who have very little, but not the fault of those who have so much. What sense does that make? Follow the money, Ragnar.

    • ragnarsbhut says:

      Arlen Grossman, most of the people who want “free stuff” are very likely the same people who decry family heirs inheriting money free of tax from their parents. No matter how rich some people are, if the pay their fair share of taxes, according to society or what their tax bracket says, government has no right to demand anymore. If I don’t have the money to afford a certain thing, I will wait until the money comes in, not just grab it from another person because of how badly I may want it. What about that young woman who was on Neil Cavuto’s show who was issuing demands for things like free public college, cancellation of student loan debts, as well as a $15.00 an hour minimum wage? She literally just said her family is already on federal assistance and right after that said there’s a population that is not contributing to society. She literally explained herself and her family on live television. Leftists want everything both ways-where they want to decry people who inherit wealth as being a bunch of moochers and claim that inheriting wealth will make people lazy, however, they want to reward people who do nothing useful with their lives with tax-free welfare benefits. How is that logic supposed to work?

      • I have a problem with one of your sentences. “No matter how rich some people are, if the pay their fair share of taxes, according to society or what their tax bracket says, government has no right to demand anymore.” You must realize that the wealthy buy politicians (Mostly Republicans) in order to ensure they get favorable rules and tax cuts to make sure they get to keep what they want and more. The average person can’t compete because they don’t have the money to buy off as many politicians. At one time income tax payment went up to as much as 90% (I’m not advocating that). Now their tax rate is lower than it’s ever been. That is why we have such overwhelming inequality. The system is rigged toward rich people.

  98. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who work hard do so to provide for themselves and their family members, while those who collect welfare and complain about the unfairness of life and their not being able to get the free stuff that they are demanding will just turn into a bunch of slackers who will sit on the streets and asking for handouts. These dimwits who go on live TV can’t even articulate effective arguments as to why college should be free. Would college be too pricey in some ways? Perhaps. The poor are not poor because the wealthy are wealthy. They just choose to be poor because of the welfare benefits that they receive.

  99. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, regardless of Leftist spin, the fact of the matter is that all wealth that is created through private endavors becomes the property of the person or people who created that wealth. No morality is to be found when there is force being used to take that wealth away from the people by force who worked hard for it and give it to any people who have not done anything to deserve any right to it. The modern day people who advocate taking wealth from people by force on the basis that these people have more than enough money according to them and redistribute that wealth to people who are undeserving of it is immoral. Are there people who legitimately need help because they fall on hard times? Yes, of course, however, these people should not be able to use their situations as excuses to demand free stuff. Outside of the right to life, the right to liberty, the right to pursue happiness, the only other rights we have are those which are protected under the Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution. All other rights are just figments of the imagination. Rich people should not be required to pay for people of lesser means to go to college. Leftists claim that people being given stuff will make the recipients moochers and that it will affect their character, however, they advocate giving people something like free college? How the heck is this logic supposed to work? Either everything should be free or absolutely nothing should be free. If these people who demand free college want that, people who inherit wealth should also get that for free. For people who want estate taxes, these same people should be willing to pay their way through college, not act as if they are entitled to it. These hypocrites can’t have it both ways.

  100. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is an article for you: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/red-alert-politics/protestor-demanded-free-stuff-caught-lying-wealthy-family-private-schooled The person in this story is the same person who went on Neil Cavuto’s show to issue the demands for free public college, student loan debt cancellation, as well as a $15.00 an hour minimum wage for people who work on the college campus that she was at. Outside of the tax obligations they are required to meet according to their tax bracket, we have no right to arbitrarily demand that the rich pay more in taxes. If a person is intelligent enough to become a multimillionaire, they should not be punished for it in order to satisfy the demands that other people have for freebies. Needing help because of unforeseen circumstances is one thing. Using one’s situation as license to act like that person and that person’s family is entitled to free stuff is another.

  101. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” If I offered to cover the tuition costs of a person who wanted to go to college, that is my prerogative. The problem is with the people who want the rich to pay for all of their stuff and bitch and complain when they don’t get their way. Why is someone entitled to a free college education and a family’s heirs not entitled to the wealth that they inherited? It is very hypocritical when someone says that something should be free for them and not free for other people. Why is a person who inherits wealth seen as being a spoiled brat and some person who demands that the stuff that he or she wants to be paid for by other people? If these people cannot see the hypocrisy in their arguments, they should wake up. The student loan debt crisis is not the fault of the rich, just that of the people who signed the documents. What is so catastrophic about having to be required to own one’s own choices in life? If one wants to go to college, that person should pay their way forward. Not whining about it. Can Leftists not see the double-standard in their own argument that someone who inherits wealth is a moocher and yet someone who receives taxpayer funded welfare and get freebies is not a moocher? College is not a birth right. You can’t keep socializing stuff that we want. If the only argument that one can make is “uum, wealth hoarders are keeping me from going to school, umm, I deserve free college on the grounds that I am a living and breathing human being,” that should cause the person making that argument to be laughed at. Delayed adolescence at its finest is on display. We could survive even if we have a 1% that has significant wealth. People should just stop being lazy and do something useful with their lives. Why should the rich pay for the education of people that they may not be related to?

  102. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I am of the belief that people who are in their graves have no need for monetary wealth. However, they should be able to die in peace and not have to live their final days worrying about the tax bill that their living family members will contend with during their time of grief. When someone who is arguing for free college on the basis that that person’s family that is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping buy to put their kid(s) through college, that is just a sob story in order to make people feel sorry for these people. Legitimate financial hardship is one thing. Using it as license to act like someone is entitled to anything that he or she has no right to is a separate issue. People who are demanding free stuff do not care how much it will cost other people. For every person who demands free college, I say that the price should go up in response. A lot of students in America not only feel entitled to free college but a free degree. With honors. In fact, they argue that they should not have to attend lectures. And taking tests are discriminatory. This is why people make fun of millennials. Millennial types feel like they are entitled to everything. No matter how rich anyone is, that person has no obligation to bow to the demands of people who want free stuff. The fact that some people have the gall to accuse other people of contributing nothing to society is absurd. Are the people who whine about that too clueless to not realize that they are speaking of themselves?

  103. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, outside of that which is necessary to fund the government, government has no right to the money of the people, be they living or deceased, period. Some people may not like the possibility of generational wealth, however, it is not harming anybody. People who work hard do so to provide for themselves and their families, so I don’t understand why the family members are less entitled to the money of the person who worked for than some dopes who use their status as welfare beneficiaries as license to demand free stuff. Personally, I have no desire to possess the money of deceased people. Let their family members keep the money. Maybe you can tell me why you, the government or anybody else feels like they can take money from grieving families who would put the money to better use than a bunch of dopes who land on welfare and act like they are entitled to money that belongs to other people. What’s wrong with eliminating that tax? The money was already taxed when being earned. It is not as if people who inherit wealth demand it, unlike those dopes who ask for handouts and demand that the rich pay for all of their stuff. Regarding family heirs that inherit money, that money was given as a gift. Those who want free college just want other people to pay for it. People should stop obsessing about what other people have and live their own lives. What about the people who want the 1% to pay for their college education? Regarding this hoarding of wealth, people who make that argument are either too lazy to learn the skills to create their own wealth or they have been fed propaganda that the 1% has deprived them of opportunities to find meaningful employment and creation of their own wealth. People who bitch and complain about student loan debt knew what they were signing up for when they signed the admission papers and took out the loans, so they deserve no sympathy. The top 1% pay 74% of the tax burden, so how are they not contributing anything?

  104. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone’s wealth was gained by satisfying the wants and needs of other people, not that person’s own selfish desires, what is the problem?

  105. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, rich people never got rich by being stupid with their money. Have they made their share of mistakes? Yes, however, if being irresponsible with one’s financial assets was the key to accumulating a lot of wealth, one would be led to believe that the most irresponsible people would have more money than they do. Why is it an acceptable thing to punish productivity with high taxes and yet it is fine and good to reward people who do nothing useful with their lives but sit on their butts and collect welfare? Why should someone, even if that person has what you classify an obscene amount of money who probably would still have a lot leftover, be obligated to fork over any of that wealth to pay for something that another person wants? Part of the problem is that we have created a society of entitlement addicts who feel like everything is owed to them in life.

  106. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be odd how our tax system punishes people who are smart with their financial assets and rewards people for doing nothing by giving them handouts and welfare. $20, 000, 000, 000, 000.00+ in debt and yet we have people who think we can afford to pay for all of the stuff that they want and they don’t even do the bare minimum to work for what they want? Even if we did not have all of this debt, why should one person be obligated to pay for and subsidize the wants of another? People who work for what they want in life understand the benefits and the long-term end results of the risks and those who demand free stuff are either unaware of the costs to other people who attempt to satisfy all their wants or they just don’t care. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” People who inherit wealth may not have earned it, so Thomas Sowell’s statement may not be completely applicable to them. However, gifts are not earned, they are given.

  107. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you have made the argument that we should have a high estate tax on the basis that family heirs who did not earn the money should pay taxes when they get the money being gifted to them. You also defend the idea of free college. Can you not see the profound double-standard there? If no person has any right to tax-free inheritance, then no person has any right to a free college education. Here are some links for you: 1: https://granitegrok.com/blog/2015/11/oh-the-story-you-told-keely-about-being-your-family-being-on-government-assistance, 2: https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/red-alert-politics/protestor-demanded-free-stuff-caught-lying-wealthy-family-private-schooled This is a classic case of welfare fraud. Keely Mullen lied about her family’s situation in order to game the system for her and her family’s own benefit.

    • Ragnar, why are you so concerned about the estate tax? Surely you are aware that it will affect only 2 of Every 1,000 Estates. So 99.8% of estates pay no estate tax. Yet millions of Americans are still paying college debts. You seem to care about multimillionaires and billionaires more than down and out students.
      It is not surprising that some people will abuse welfare. That’s human nature. You don’t think that billionaires won’t try to game the system?
      Unlike you, my sympathies are with the millions of Americans who need help, not the handful of rich people who really don’t need help. When people abuse the system they should be prosecuted. But you don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if it neither picks my pocket or breaks my leg, why should I care? These hypocrites who whine about people who inherit wealth tax-free are all to happy to demand college-free tuition. Why should one be free and not the other? Both are not earned, however, you defend someone who is griping about wanting free college and condemn a grieving family for wanting to keep what wealth they have inherited? It is not like the people who inherit wealth demand it. These idiots who take on college debt knew what they got into, so they can deal with it.

  108. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, there is a thing that they call supply and demand. Supply in the case of college means that universities are available for the pursuit of higher education. Demand is the tuition fees for the faculty to remain functional. People who are wealthy do not have their wealth and/or other monetary assets stuffed in a box that does nothing but accumulate dust. Much of that money gets invested in the stock market, is used to open and/or expand business ventures, saved up for retirement, maybe used to put oneself or one’s kids through college.

  109. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the reason a lot of people land on welfare and whine about their situation is because they are just too lazy to find solutions to their problems. Nobody owes another person anything in life. Those who refuse to work for what they want will ultimately become panhandlers. Rich people should not be required to fork over any of their assets to pay for people to go to college because these people are unwilling to do anything to help themselves along the way financially. For all of the complaining from those on the Left that inheriting wealth will make people lazy and a bunch of moochers, they have no problem in not accusing people who want free stuff of being moochers. Compulsorily demanding that someone pay for another person’s stuff makes the recipient a moocher. When someone actually inherits wealth, regardless of the amount, the transaction was purely voluntary. What about people who claim that there should be limits on people’s income because they believe some people are making way too much money in the eyes of people who make that argument? These people are just looking for handouts.

  110. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that I have gone on a bit of a diatribe about the estate tax. There is an argument among estate tax proponents that unearned transfers of wealth work against the free market by creating a disincentive of hard work in the recipients, and others in the market. Similar arguments could be made about people who are demanding free public college in the sense that the people who want it are unwilling to do any real work to reach the desired goal of a college education and degree. One credible argument that can be made against the estate tax is based on a distrust of governments to use taxes for the public good. Proponents of the estate tax just want to look for every possible way to take money that was earned by the family that ultimately has it and redistribute that income, wealth, whatever you want to call it to people who want handouts. At least inherited wealth will be likely to get utilized in a productive way, not locked in a safe that will get dusty with age. There is also a profound degree of hypocrisy in the minds of people who use their statuses as welfare beneficiaries in an attempt to get more free stuff and yet make a fuss when someone inherits wealth from family members.Many people can argue that inheriting wealth will result in the recipient(s) being lazy, however, what about the people who pay high tax rates on the money that was earned? They still work to provide for their families. Is a tax on their labor going to stop them from doing what they do? Not likely. Will repealing the estate tax be an incentive for a family’s heir(s) to do nothing with the massive wealth they get? I doubt it. Personally, even though some people may be immune from the tax, an easy way out is for a family that would be liable for it to spend itself into financial ruin. People who inherit wealth never get this at the expense of the public. A lot of the people who advocate taking wealth from rich deceased people, which is an oxymoron, because a deceased person owns nothing once deceased is advocating taking money from grieving family members. Grieving family members should have more right to a deceased person’s wealth than a bunch of parasites who sit and collect welfare and complain about how unfair life is for them and act as if receiving welfare benefits entitles them to more free stuff.

  111. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I do not believe that the rich should be able to possess all of the nation’s wealth. However, if someone generates his or her own wealth that amounts to millions, if not billions of dollars due to hard work, sensible investments, long-term savings and just eliminating areas of nonessential spending, why should that person who created his or her own wealth have that taken away and redistributed to people who demand freebies? Being wealthy is not immoral. Screwing other people over to gain massive wealth for oneself is immoral. Why should a person who works hard to earn a living be obligated to pay for the wants of people who demand free stuff and are unwilling to do anything to help themselves? On the matter of the free inheritance vs. free college argument, Progressives show themselves to be hypocrites in this regard. They say that it is wrong for someone to get something that was not earned free of tax, all while offering free public college. If one has to pay an estate tax, even if that person has significant wealth after the fact, a person who wants to go to college should foot the bill, apply for a scholarship or takeout student loans and pay them back. Wealth inequality is a non-issue in the minds of rational thinking people. People should stop being rewarded with welfare checks for doing nothing. More welfare checks and freebies only provides incentives to be lazy. If one person gives another person something of the giver’s own volition, that is one thing. Taking that via force is another. Evening out wealth via compulsory methods is not going to help anybody, not the rich and definitely not the poor. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Taking money from one family that works hard through excessive taxes and redistributing it to people who use their status as welfare recipients as license to act like they are entitled to it is wrongheaded. I would also apply that quote to people who want something for nothing. No person has any moral standing to whine about how much wealth another person has.

  112. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, any form of wealth redistribution should come about as a result of voluntary financial transactions between people who buy things and people who create and sell things. Otherwise, all of this wealth redistribution is only done to give people handouts and promises of free stuff in order to dupe these people into continuously voting for politicians who are making these promises.

  113. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, why is it that a person or people who inherit wealth due to a voluntary exchange get accused of being leeches or moochers when they inherit something and yet people who demand that things be given to them at the expense of other people against the will of these people are not seen as moochers? What does it matter if some people are hoarding the wealth? People who whine about that are just asking for handouts and will do nothing useful with their lives. Why should wealth that one worked for and plans on using to provide financial security for family members be forcibly redistributed to people who ask for handouts and won’t do a damn thing but complain about how unfair life is for them? Many of the people who are demanding freebies can’t articulate an effective argument to justify why they feel like they are owed anything. If one wants to argue that college tuition is too costly, petition the university to lower the tuition costs. Instead of demanding that someone pay for the stuff that another person wants, the person who wants it should pursue that desire of that person’s own volition. People who are demanding freebies overlook the advantage of the economic mobility that the rich have. If the rich leave, none of this free stuff will get paid for. Why is wealth inequality a bad thing? If someone has $3, 000, 000.00 and someone has $550, 000.00, one person will have more than the other, however, neither person is hurting from a financial standpoint. I believe that taxing what one earns is immoral. However, taxing what one has in savings is criminal level theft. A wealth tax is Unconstitutional. Why punish the rich for doing well? If they are smart with their money, why should it be taxed and redistributed to people who probably fell asleep during math class or economics class? Quite honestly, I am more concerned about our national debt than I am about satisfying the demands of people who want us us to pay for their free stuff. I know that Progressives tend to be economically illiterate, however, they should wake up. They don’t want to tax the rich in the name of fairness, just to redistribute that wealth to people who have not worked for it and will vote for politicians who will engage in this scheme. A wealth tax is a double tax. If you are paying income tax, there should be no reason for a wealth tax.

  114. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, who deserves the right to the money of deceased people-welfare recipients, the family members of the deceased people or the government? Just because someone inherits money does not stop other people from becoming success stories in their own lives. Maybe these advocates for free stuff can explain why they want free stuff for themselves and label other people who get free stuff due to an inheritance as moochers. At least inherited money was taxed before it was passed down, so this is nothing more than double-dipping. Why should you tax people when they are passing on money to their children after death? Especially when they paid taxes on it while alive. Since inherited wealth was given as a gift, it is absurd that people who inherit wealth are considered as being moochers. When someone is receiving taxpayer funded benefits and not working or contributing to society, that person has absolutely no moral grounds to whine about people who contribute nothing. Most people who incredibly work do not meet the requirements to receive government assistance unless the lie to the system. If someone says they work hard but receive welfare benefits, they are probably just gaming the system for their own benefit. At least people who inherit wealth are more responsible with their money than people who get money from the state in the form of welfare benefits. With the massive national debt we have, why do some people think we can afford to provide them with freebies and handouts and not make the situation worse? To arbitrarily take wealth from productive people and redistribute it to people who demand free stuff will only encourage and enable people to be lazy. Wealth taxes that are proposed by many people would also screw us over. Even if it hits the rich, what if some families have very little in terms of earned income and has amassed a lot of money in savings? Is all of that going to be taken from people who are sensible with their assets and redistributed to people who do nothing useful with their lives?

  115. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, where is the injustice when people are required to actually work for what they want to get that which they want? If certain universities have tuition costs that are outside of a person’s budget, go to a cheaper college or to a trade school where you can learn a skill set that can earn one a lot of money and that person can pay for that person’s own tuition. Nobody owes these entitled dopes a damn thing. The fact that these people think that everything is owed to them and should be handed to them is absurd. Get off of your butts, Iphones, gadgets, et cetera and do something useful with your life. Why should the 1% pay for all of the wants and necessities of these people? They are owed nothing in life. Rich people did not get rich being stupid with their money, so why are they obligated to subsidize the college educations of people who don’t have a damn clue about how money works and feel like they are owed everything in life?

  116. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even if Progressives try to employ seemingly moral arguments for the redistribution of wealth, redistribution of wealth from one person or group to another person or group makes the recipient(s) dependent and fosters a sense of entitlement. It is also theft when that wealth is taken at gunpoint (figuratively or literally) and the person or people who actually worked for it are less entitled to that than people who sit and receive handouts and do nothing useful with their lives. If earning money through hard work=hoarding it, then any person can be defined as a wealth hoarder. People who make the wealth hoarding argument are just too lazy to learn the skills to create their own. For every person who demands free college, I think that the tuition fees should increase. That way those who are smart with their money can go to college if they saved up the money for the tuition and the people who make all of these demands are forced to grow up. We also have people who are being very egotistical and selfish when they use the “my parents are scraping by to get me through college” line to get their way. Why is someone who inherits wealth seen as lazy and yet people who are demanding that other people pay for their stuff not subjected to that accusation? Most of these idiots who issue their demands are not comprehending the costs associated with their demands.

  117. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the “I want the rich to pay for my stuff” mentality that some people have is laughable. Free college? Earn that as a reward for service to your country. Cancellation of student loan debt? These clowns knew what they were getting into when they signed the admission papers. A $15.00 an hour minimum wage? Why should someone whose efforts merit $25.00 an hour be paid $15.00 and someone who just slacks off gets paid the same dollar amount? People who need help because of difficult circumstances should be helped. Those who use the “my family is on numerous forms of public assistance” line in order to justify getting more free stuff are getting that at the expense of the taxpayers without their blessing. At least inherited wealth does not come at the expense of society. One person being given something free of any price tag by another person is one thing. Just demanding that it be given to the person making the demands is a separate matter. Why are the 1% being subjected to blame for the catastrophic student loan debts incurred by other people? These people who took on that debt knew what they were getting themselves into when they signed the admission papers, so they should own their own choices. The 1% are not hoarding the wealth. It was acquired through their having the ideas that they have and the people that they employ who helped them to get the wealth that they have. Why do welfare recipients who sit and demand free stuff think they’re entitled to someone else’s money? Someone who says, “My family is scraping by to get me through college,” which may be true, is being egotistical and self-centered. This “me, me, me” mentality that these people have is ridiculous. Even if it is true that some people may land on government assistance programs, they are not required to stay their forever. It is a choice that these people make to remain on the government welfare rolls. Welfare should be for people who fall on hard times, not used as a career opportunity where people get money for doing nothing. Can’t these people who claim that they see that there are some people who are not contributing to society not get the fact that they are speaking of themselves? Outside of what was inherited, many people who get their wealth worked for it. Regarding the catastrophe of excessive student loan debt that some of these people speak about, these idiots who gripe about that brought it upon themselves. Nobody owes these people anything in life. Public schools are funded with our tax dollars, so the early stages of the education of these people, that being k-12, is already paid for. Once someone has reached the status of adulthood by legal definition, that person has to own his or her own choices in life. If a wealthy person has to pick up the tab for a person who wants to go to a public college, the wealthy person should be able to decide what degree the college student can pursue. “But I don’t want them to pick my degree, just that they pay for my education. It’s not fair! Waa, waa,” will be the mindset of these people.

  118. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, without some degree of a 1% in society, how are the 99% going to be employed? It is convoluted that some people blame the poor for our problems and it is convoluted that some people blame the rich for our problems. Neither side deserves the full blame, however, the blame should land at the feet of the government. Government and by extension many of our leaders would show no sense of fiscal responsibility based on observations I have made.

  119. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, outside of their lives, their liberties, their pursuits of happiness, people are entitled to nothing. Someone may give another person something as a gift, however, that exchange is voluntary. Most of the people who go on TV and demand free stuff probably got drunk at a bar and can’t hear how stupid they sound because the effects of their beverage of choice has not worn off. The same is true for people who demand that the law impose a $15.00 an hour minimum wage for all workers. They are probably not aware of the economic effects that their demands will have. As far as demanding stuff, that b.s. would not fly in the minds of rational thinking people. “I want my ice cream and I want it right now!” “Eat your vegetables and then you’ll get your ice cream.” “No! I want my ice cream!” This is the difference between people who are willing to put in an effort to get to their desired goals and people who are too lazy to do anything useful with their lives. People who eat all of their vegetables will get the reward of the ice cream as the reward, while people who want ice cream will try to get out of eating their vegetables. Sheltered lives is what many of these people have. They are being protected from the ugliness of life to the point that they need safe spaces to be functional.

  120. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be exceedingly hypocritical when we have people who are complaining about other people who inherit wealth, regardless of the amount, free of tax, however, these very people have no problem and show no consideration regarding the costs to other people who have been obligated against their will to pay for the things that these people want. These people who are so enamored with the idea of Socialism should go to Venezuela for 6 months, maybe longer, then come back and see that the poor have better lives here than they do in these third world countries that have been run into the ground. College is not a birth right. Just demanding that it be free won’t work. We could survive even if the 1% was hoarding the wealth. Just pay attention during economics class and learn about how money and finances works. Blaming other people for one’s own choices in life is ridiculous. People should not be allowed to have access to any forms of technology while in class. They should also not get good grades if their work is mediocre. People who go on TV and demand free stuff probably got drunk at a bar and are not aware of how stupid they sound when they mindlessly babble about wanting free stuff.

  121. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who take on student loan debt in order to pay for their schooling knew beforehand what they would be obligated to when they signed up for it. Calling for it to be cancelled is absurd. They took it on and they should be required to own it. These people who are actively demanding free stuff have been living in a bubble for too long and have been protected from the harsher aspects of life for far too long and they don’t even know how to cope when things don’t go their way because of their entitlement mentality. Regarding the difference between people who inherit wealth and people who collect welfare and want other people to pay for their stuff, one thing that eludes Leftists is that inherited wealth was as a result of a voluntary exchange between consenting parties, the living and the dying, while people who collect welfare and want other people to pay for their stuff use tactics of manipulation to get their way. The 1% don’t owe anyone who sits and whines about wanting free stuff anything. Homelessness in the U.S.A. deserves more focus than satisfying demands of lazy people who don’t want to pay for their own college education. Even though I did not vote for him in 2012, seeing as I preferred the Libertarian Party candidate, Mitt Romney was right when he said that we have gone from a society based on merit to a society based on entitlement.

  122. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” People who say, “The rich have more than enough money,” which is just an opinion based on a sense of envy and entitlement, puts on display a profound and obvious disconnect from reality and no clear understanding of how the rich got the wealth that they have. Did some people inherit wealth? Yes, however, that transaction was voluntary. Did many people who got wealthy do so as a result of hard work and by creating goods and providing services to satisfy the wants and needs of other people? Yes, they did. We need to fix how the government uses money, not give them more. As indicated in that video I linked, that young woman was clearly parroting talking points being fed to her without any real comprehension of the long-term costs.

  123. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if no person is entitled to anything outside of that person’s life, that person’s liberty, that person’s pursuit of happiness, then people who feel like they are entitled to anything else should wake up. Most of these people who go on live television and demand free things have probably been brainwashed by politicians who promise free stuff. When people get an education for nothing that’s exactly what they learn. Why does someone feel like he or she deserves money that belongs to another person? America needs construction workers, electricians and plumbers more than they do college grads with liberal arts degrees. Whining will get people nowhere in life. Life is not fair, so people should just get used to it. Even if the 1% is “hoarding” wealth, that should not be a deterrent to one’s own wealth pursuits. How egotistical and selfish does one have to be to demand that other people pay for that person’s stuff?

  124. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, rich people don’t get rich by being stupid and senseless with their money. Debt-free living and being financially responsible are a few keys to economic success. Even if we do not have career economists, if people would pay more attention to economists like Milton Friedman, Thomas Sowell and Walter Williams, they may actually learn something about economics and money. The very people who go on and on about how unfair life is because they are not being given free stuff per their demands should wake up. People are only entitled to that which they work for. If someone does not work for something, that person deserves nothing. So-called wealth hoarders work their butts off for what they earn. People who want a fairer and more equitable system of education are actually saying, however, not in so many words, “We are too lazy to pay for the stuff we want, so you are picking up the tab for us.” Want to attend college, even if it is a really expensive one, then get a job and save up a good amount of money from each paycheck in order to cover the tuition costs. Even with the 1% hoarding the wealth, which is a b.s. argument to make, that is not going to stop people from thriving. People who say, “The rich have too much money,” which is debatable, are just too lazy and looking for freebies and handouts, as is demonstrated by that one woman in the video I linked. This woman clearly demonstrates her painful level of ignorance about free flow of money and information. People aren’t owed a damn thing in life.

  125. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here are a few videos for you: 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jnbNdmB8U0, 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EgVDyBqAQNw, 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1h8ajiYZhE, 4: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcE8cf8dQEM, 5: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrnbew8wpRQ, 6: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x9ueaxf75SU, 7: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckDfsCTtybw, 8: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WFDIeooP-us, 9: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1h8ajiYZhE Unless done via voluntary transactions, no person has any right to wealth created by other people, period. The people who argue otherwise are very likely the same people who advocated theft of the labor of African Americans via slavery and forced relocation of Indian tribes from land that was rightfully theirs. Here is another problem: We have people who want the wealthy to subsidize all of their stuff without doing the bare minimum to help themselves. Student loan debt is a non-issue for people who are willing to take care of it themselves. It is only a problem for people who refuse to be accountable for their own situations.

  126. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_w8jF7IKZvs It is obvious that no person needs billions of dollars to be a success story in life. Money is not the source of true happiness. Having said that, what one works for should be that which the person can enjoy the rights to. Just my thoughts.

  127. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if people who go on live television and demand free stuff cannot articulate an effective explanation as to why they feel like they are entitled to it, they should just go away. That young college aged woman could not even provide a comprehensive argument as to why free college should be a thing. Going on live TV and issuing demands for free public college, cancellation of student loan debt and demanding by legal dictate what one should be paid does not work in the real world. Education is important, however, no person has the right to demand that other people pay for it. These idiots like that one woman who cannot even provide any understandable explanation as to why free college should be a thing have no grasp of anything outside of their bubbles. People who want to decry the excessively high tuition fees of some colleges/universities can find cheaper alternatives. Demanding free stuff without doing a cost-benefit analysis is absurd. Can’t these imbeciles/idiots not see that they are speaking of themselves when they talk about some people not contributing to society? People who receive handouts and collect welfare while doing nothing useful in society have no rights to complain about people doing nothing when they are the very people who do nothing. Those who want free college and want to tax the wealthy in order to pay for it just demand that so they can keep being given license to be lazy and produce nothing. How did Bill Gates create Microsoft? By being lazy? No. He did it with the objective to produce things that benefit the people who purchase Microsoft products. Why do people who want free stuff feel like they are entitled to other people’s money? Classic case of you work and I eat mentality at work. We seem to have gone down the path of people feeling like they are entitled to things that they have no right to and people who should have the right to keep what they earn are forced via taxes to redistribute that wealth to people who have done nothing productive in order to benefit from any of it. People who demand that they get paid $15.00 an hour do not have a clue about labor costs. Raise the minimum wage, the business that has that issue of being forced by legal dictate to pay it will raise prices of goods, will find ways of paying employees less, maybe even having employees facing a layoff. Colleges are churning out thousands of these stupid clowns. The scary thing is they’re our future. Why should hard working people give away their earnings to people who aren’t willing to work as hard? That woman who was demanding free college has never had to look at a 1040 or all other bills that require money to be paid for. Having sympathy for people who fall on hard times and wanting to help is one thing. This “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance” act is just used as a pretense to hide the fact that they want free stuff and play on our sympathies to get it. Scraping by to get this girl through college? She should get off of her butt and work. Did she ever graduated out of the child phase where children are protected from the ugliness of some aspects of life or not? Someone who is college age is also by definition an adult, so that person should take responsibility for his or her own decisions in life. Homelessness in America deserves focus over professional college students who want to weasel their way out of paying for things that they obligated themselves to. People who want something for nothing deserve nothing.

  128. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find it to be rather odd that any person who inherits wealth will face the accusation of becoming lazy and contribute nothing, however, they do not apply that argument to people who collect welfare and do not contribute anything useful at all. Even if I never earned or inherited millions of dollars, I see no real reason to begrudge people who do earn money or inherit money. Dying people should not have to go to their graves with the knowledge that half of what they leave to their living relatives will be sent to a government that is financially irresponsible. Outside of a voluntary exchange, no person has any right to the money of other people, be these people living or deceased. The people who bash those who inherit tax-free wealth are the same people who want to give away free stuff on our dimes. Those welfare recipients who complain about some people contributing nothing useful to society should look at themselves. Whining about what one wants in life is absurd. Most of the people who demand free stuff can’t articulate a rational argument for why they feel like they deserve free stuff.

    • Respectfully, Ragnar, there is no need to write any more about this issue. You have been saying the same thing in a hundred different ways for months. Face it, neither of us will change each other’s mind. If you find a new issue, feel free to comment. In any event, I hope you are staying healthy.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, to be fair and in my defense, I have not issued any personal attacks against you in my comments. So I think the civility factor merits some credit.

        • I agree, Ragnar. We have been civil and respectful with each other. My only complaint is saying the same thing over and over. I like variety. I’m just telling you my feelings. I have no complaint about you personally.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, even though this post talks about rich Americans, what are your views regarding the argument that some people make that the rich are responsible for our nation’s debt and not the government due to its profligate spending?

          • The national debt is a combination of both. And the debt is escalating at a record clip (which is typical of Republican administrations).

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, I am not saying that the national debt is not an issue. The issue is whether or not one group of people or another group of people deserve the brunt of the blame.

  129. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people on the Right believe in equality of opportunity and people on the Left believe in equality of outcome. Equal opportunity does not always guarantee equal results. Equal outcomes may ultimately result in everyone having nothing equally. Why should people only be able to earn a set amount of money in any given year? This “the rich should be paying more in taxes to lessen the inequality” claptrap would lead to massive redistribution of wealth from people who create it to people who have done nothing to deserve any rights to it. That video I linked with that young woman who was clearly college aged and could find meaningful part-time or full-time employment to pay for her tuition in full who was asking for a handout because of the claims that her family was on numerous forms of government assistance and were scraping by to put her through college shows an entitlement mentality. Want to know the primary difference between welfare benefits and inherited wealth? Welfare benefits are provided to the beneficiaries at the cost to the taxpayers with no accountability to them and inherited wealth came as a result of a purely voluntary transaction. All of this “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to get me through college” claptrap is evidence that indicates that some people who receive welfare only want to abuse the system for their own benefit. People who cannot articulate an effective line of argument for all of the free stuff that they want should come out of their Kool-Aid induced stupor and accept the fact that they are not owed anything and have no right to demand that other people pay for their “free” stuff. People who want to go to college should realize that it is a choice that they make for themselves. Why should people who start out as being flat broke and then earn millions of dollars in some cases due to hard work and being sensible with their financial investments be required to give that money to anybody? There is no such thing as hoarding wealth. Once the wealth is created, it belongs to the person or family that created. For people who spew claptrap about how unfair it is for them to be unable to go to college due to the tuition cost, consider going to trade school and actually learn something useful.

  130. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if earning money=hoarding it, even a person with an income of $250, 000.00 could be seen as “hoarding” wealth. When people are asked how all of the stuff they want is going to be paid for, the deer in headlights look and the inability to elaborate is both amusing and sad. The amusing part is how these people are put in a position of stunned silence when asked how their free stuff is financed and the sad part is that they cannot comprehend the total costs in the long run to satisfy all of their demands. Why is it the “top 1%’s” responsibility to bail everyone out when these people make bad decisions? The entitlement mentality of welfare recipients who want something for nothing is also ridiculous. Where is the injustice in paying for something that one wants? Can’t these people who claim that they are on government assistance and accuse some people who contributing nothing to society not see the fact that they are speaking of themselves? This is a classic example of a person who says, “I want to blame other people for my problems.” Many people who want free stuff do not understand what is called supply and demand. The supply part extends to colleges/universities, while the demand is the tuition for attendance. Scraping by to put one’s kid(s) through college and the kid(s) not being willing to put any effort into the endavor is absurd. For all of the Leftists who complain that people who inherit massive wealth free of tax will not do anything useful with their lives, which is an unsubstantiated notion, they seem to have no problem with enabling people who collect welfare to get away with that same thing. Freeloaders who collect welfare and demand free stuff while doing nothing of any benefit to society do not deserve that which they demand.

    • Ragnar, you repeatedly send out the same kind of posts that use broad generalizations about rich people (whom you like) and poor people (whom you don’t like). Perhaps it’s time to move on to other issues. That’s how I feel.

  131. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here are a few videos for you: 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Xa9T2OMzmw, 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pTwPHuE_HrU The discussion about wealth inequality is absurd. No system has perfect equality. Some people will invariably still have more wealth than other people. Why is hard work being punished and being lazy and collecting welfare and handouts being rewarded?

    • I don’t accept your premise that rich people got that way by hard work (many have inherited it) and that people taking government assistance are lazy (often bad luck and medical conditions are the cause). Stereotypes make any argument easy and valid, but when real people are involved it gets trickier. You might be an exception but I find many conservatives and libertarians lack compassion and empathy.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, people who have the capacity to work and yet choose not to because they drank the “government will provide all our wants and needs” Kool-Aid and fall on hard times because of choices that they made are less deserving of sympathy than people who get hit with a tax bill via the estate tax after contending with the pain of losing any family member(s) that the person in question has. Personally, I don’t give a damn about people who use the “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to get me through college” line as an excuse to demand free stuff. They should grow up and stop whining about how unfair life is.

  132. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I would also argue that we have an issue of people who can be financially irresponsible with their assets. A family that has very little income, however, has a lot in savings would be better off economically than a family that has a significant income and no savings. How? Built up long-term savings would be there for the family that may be out of work when the economy is in decline. Elizabeth Warren and other people have actively promoted the idea of a wealth tax. Even if it impacts the 1% or the 0.01%, that would provide an incentive for the wealthy to store most or all of their financial assets instead of keeping that money here. This tax would be extremely effective at breaking the economy.

  133. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I have noted on multiple occasions a serious disconnect from reality in the thinking of many people on the Left. They go on live television and display a sense of moral outrage at the cost of college tuition, which I will concede can be too expensive in some ways, however, if someone does not have the financial assets to pay the costs associated with it, then they should either not go or get a part-time job and save up the money for the endavor. I have been harping about the estate tax, yes, however, it is profoundly hypocritical to label someone who is given something as a gift by any family member(s) as being a moocher, while claiming that the recipient did nothing to earn it and yet have no problem giving a free college education to people who also have not earned it. Who is getting money at the public’s expense-people who inherit wealth from the previous generation or people who collect welfare and contribute nothing of any benefit to society?

    • I understand what you are saying, Ragnar. But I think many of your views are colored by stereotypes. Has it occurred to you that many people truly need assistance? People who have been laid off their job, lost their money because of medical costs, work for minimum wage and can’t keep up with the rising cost of living, and so on. Not everyone has the ability to easily pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Besides, cutbacks on welfare over the past few years has meant less opportunity. Yes, there are irresponsible people, but also families who truly need help. I hope you have compassion for the truly needy.
      By the way, many accomplished people have used public assistance to overcome their poverty and have gone on to great things: J.K. Rowling, Dr. Ben Carson, Bruce Springsteen, several politicians, etc. Every case is different. Don’t use such broad strokes to criticize people who need help.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, there is a difference between people who actually need help and people who abuse the welfare system for their own benefit. Someone who has a legitimate medical disability that keeps them from driving can find public transportation, maybe a bus, train or taxicab to get where they want to go. Or an employee/coworker can take the person to work. That woman who was being interviewed by Neil Cavuto was dressed reasonably well, so this scraping by to get her through college argument that she used is indefensible. Welfare fraud is another big problem. Someone who falls on hard times deserves our compassion and sympathy, yes, however, having a family that is collecting welfare and claiming that said family is working class is indicative of a disconnect from reality.

        • It’s a shame you don’t seem to think that society has an obligation to help the less fortunate, without being so stingy about it. I’m sure there is welfare fraud, but that it costs far less than corporate welfare and tax breaks for the rich. But I don’t hear you complaining about them. Conservatives prefer demonizing the poor among us, rather than the rich. As was said in a Tom Cruise movie: “follow the money.”

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, you are being spoon-fed propaganda by mainstream media. Reread the last statement in my previous comment. This hoarding of the wealth nonsense is indicative of people who have been duped into the belief that money is a finite resource.

          • The definition of what is Media propaganda depends on your political views. I suspect we have different ideas on where the propaganda is coming from. Don’t you agree?

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, I agree with you on this.

  134. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, not that any person needs this kind of money, however, if someone earned $10, 000, 000.00 by producing something that people want or need, that person should be able to keep a good share of it. Maybe $3, 000, 000.00. So that person may not be able to keep all of the money in terms of regular income, however, that person would still have significant wealth. Heck, if I had $10, 000, 000.00, however, I was able to walk away with $3, 000, 000.00 after taxes, that would be a non-issue for me personally.

  135. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, politicians who promise free stuff to people only do so to garner the support of these people during various elections. If people are concerned about the cost of college tuition, look for a college with lower costs or go to a trade school and actually learn something useful. People who have been indoctrinated into the belief that they are entitled to something for nothing should wake up. Those who want something for nothing deserve nothing. If college degrees were a necessity to be successful in life, how does this explain people who become successful in their own right without a college degree? Most of the people that demand free stuff are without a clue as to the actual costs.

  136. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, many people seem to view rich people as being parasites. Even though it may seem to be unfair in the eyes of some people for the rich to have as much money as they do, is it not true that having rich people in society benefits us all to some degree? I would like to get your perspective on this matter.

    • It comes down to the details, Ragnar. Do they pay their fair share to society? Should they have excess billions while so many others are hurting? Should the government favor them with beneficial subsidies and tax breaks? Right now, their share of society’s wealth does not seem right or fair, and not beneficial to most Americans.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if someone produces something of great benefit to society, that person should be able to keep most of the money that was earned. However, someone who gets ripped off by working hard and not being paid adequately should have a legitimate grievance against the employer(s) who hired said person. Just my thoughts.

  137. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I find the fact that we have people who collect welfare and demand free stuff and accuse people of contributing nothing to be absolutely laughable. The people who contribute nothing are the very people who are demanding this free stuff. All of this “I come from a working class family that is on numerous forms of government assistance and is scraping by to put me through college” b.s. is indicative of people who are too lazy to work hard and act like they are entitled to everything and want things presented to them on a silver platter. Some people who are of college age and yet do not do anything to work their way through college should learn that demanding things be handed to them will not be to their benefit. The “my family is on welfare” claim, which may be true, is indicative of the view that some people have that they should get something for nothing and people who work hard deserve nothing despite working their butts off. Why should college be free? It’s a privilege, not a right.

  138. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is a hypothetical scenario for you: A computer factory owner has 25, 000 employees and each employee walks away with an annual paycheck of $450, 000.00 along with what they have in long-term savings, say $5000, 000.00 and a car company has 33, 000 employees and each person has $250, 000.00, with an accumulated savings of $15, 000, 000.00. Who is better off financially-a person with a lower amount of earned income but more in long-term savings or a person with a high income but less in savings when all hell breaks loose?

    • I think the workers with higher savings are in the best position. What is the point of this situation and question?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the scenarios were purely hypothetical. The point of the situation and the question was basically to illustrate financial situations and how sensible each person would be with their finances in each case.

  139. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone gets rich due to a ripoff of another person, I find that to be morally objectionable. Someone who gets rich by satisfying wants and needs of other people is a separate matter. Wealth inequality as a talking point is irrelevant.

  140. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, why is it so horrendous and terrible for people who want to go to college to get into student loan debt? They knew what they were getting into when they enrolled, so they should be responsible for that situation.

  141. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, no person has any right to demand that the rich pay for that person’s stuff. People who sit on their butts and collect welfare are already getting “free” stuff. Now they want more? For all of this talk of wealth hoarding, people who make that argument should go back to school and learn how money actually works. Besides, these people work for what they earn.

    • Ragnar, you must know that the real problem is corporate welfare, when the government doles out money to people who don’t need it. Again, your stereotypes are showing and influencing your opinions, which somehow are ALWAYS favoring the rich. I think it is fine that our government provides a safety net to those who need it, but obviously they aren’t giving enough because there is so much poverty and homelessness in our country.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, people who work hard do so to make money for themselves and to provide for their children and welfare recipients leech and mooch and produce nothing of any benefit to society. Most of these people who demand free public college are doing 1 of 3 things: 1: Subscribing to and parroting talking points being fed to them by their college professors. 2: Collecting free welfare benefits and using that as license to demand more free stuff. 3: Just whining about how unfair the costs are because they don’t have the money to pay them and expect other people to pick up the tab. People who feel like they have an absolute right to something for nothing should wake up and realize that they are not owed anything in life. 3 core demands? Just stop griping about how unfair life is and do something useful. Why is a family, which is able to pay for their children’s college education receiving public assistance? Looks like a classic case of welfare fraud at work. Leftists display a severe disconnect from reality when they accuse people who inherit wealth from anyone free of tax as being moochers and yet want to give away free public college on our dime? The only differences between those who inherit wealth and those who demand that society pay for their stuff is that inherited wealth was achieved via a voluntary transaction and people who want to go to college but don’t have the money just want other people to pay for their stuff. People who want welfare and other free stuff are moochers and people who elect of their own volition to leave financial assets to living relatives are a separate matter. The rich owe us nothing. Rather than complaining about other people hoarding wealth, these people who whine about that should take a courses in math, economics and finance. College is not a birth right. No person deserves a college degree.

        • Ragnar, respectfully, our dialogue is getting old and tiresome. You always defend the rich over the poor, and I do the opposite. Neither of us is going to change.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, even if the rich were able to pay for all of the things that welfare recipients want, the biggest problem is that these people would be enabled to continue a downward spiral and not be encouraged to do anything useful with their lives. Poor people keep voting for people who give them handouts, not lifting them up, which is convoluted.

  142. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone has more wealth than another person, however, the annual income is equivalent, why should the person with more wealth give it away? I find it to be laughable, as well as profoundly hypocritical, when people who collect tax-free welfare benefits and want free stuff that is subsidized by the taxpayers complain about people who inherit wealth/estates getting that wealth and these estates free of tax. No person owes anybody anything in life, so these people who feel like they are entitled to free stuff should wake up. The top 1% do not hoard wealth. They invest their wealth in the economy. Just because welfare recipients are not directly the beneficiaries of that invested wealth does not mean that it has not taken place. The 1% earned their money, so they shouldn’t have to pay for people who collect welfare and do nothing useful in their lives that didn’t work for it to have their irresponsible choices being enabled. How did that 1% get that wealth? Did they steal it? No. They worked for it. No one owes anybody else anything in life. Being indoctrinated into the belief that you are owed stuff by other people is absurd. Hardworking people who leave wealth to their families when they die do so of their own volition while welfare recipients sit and whine about wanting other people to pay for their stuff. The “my family is on numerous forms of government assistance” line is just used as an excuse to get more free stuff for oneself and one’s family and mooch off of other people. We should be checking the economic statuses of people who receive welfare benefits. A family of able-bodied people who can work but choose not to should be ineligible for welfare benefits, should be checked based on economic status when applying for welfare benefits to make sure the claim is not fraudulent. Why do these people who sit and collect welfare and want free stuff think they have the right to money someone else earned? Demanding that other people pay for one person’s education makes the recipient a moocher. Just saying that one is entitled to a $15.00 an hour minimum wage and wanting the law to dictate wages is absurd. Quite frankly, I am worn out on hearing people whine about being on welfare and using that as an excuse to demand that other people pay for the stuff that welfare recipients want. The 1% are creating catastrophic student loan debts for college students that they cannot repay? People who go to college know what they get into when they take on these student loans. If the wealthy have to pay for the college education of some people, the wealthy should dictate what these people should be able to study, as well as what degrees they can get.

  143. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, why should people who work hard to provide for their families be obligated to subsidize the lifestyles of people who collect welfare and do nothing useful with their lives? Even if people who inherit wealth did nothing to earn it, that financial transaction took place between 2 parties, the living and the dying. The transaction was consensual, so from that standpoint, even if the recipient(s) did nothing to earn that money, the person who is on his or her deathbed should have every right to leave that money to living family members. Why bother working to provide for one person’s family members if the person doing so had to go to his or her grave with the knowledge that the government was going to take half of the inherited wealth from living family members and redistribute that wealth to lazy slackers who sit and collect welfare and complain about how unfair their lives are just want free stuff? At the risk of resorting to religious arguments against the estate tax, thou shall not covet and thou shall not steal. No person hoards wealth. That person has earned that wealth. I would not be surprised if many people who are on numerous forms of government assistance were perfectly capable of working, however, they were just using government assistance as license to be lazy and demand free stuff. No person or family who works hard owes a penny of their money to welfare recipients. People who are demanding free stuff for themselves have no ability to comprehend the costs to other people. The fact that we have some people who complain about other people hoarding the wealth is absolutely laughable. People who are concerned about their financial state should pay attention in economics class and learn math. Why should hard working people give away their earnings to people who collect welfare and want free things and are doing nothing productive with their lives? Another reason the welfare state should be gone is so we don’t have people who cross over into our country illegally and leech and mooch off of us. We should also be launching investigations into potential cases of welfare fraud. If someone claims to have a working class family that is scraping by just to get their kid(s) through college, either tuition is cheap enough for that family to pay for their kid(s) to have a college education and still qualify for government assistance or they are scamming the system for their own benefit.

  144. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, instead of complaining about some people having more wealth than other people, be it earned or inherited, the people who have less should learn by example of the successes and failures of the people who got rich. Why do people who are lazy and refuse to work hard owed anything by other people? Get off of your butts and stop complaining. It may sound appealing to blame other people for one person’s economic ills, however, there is also the issue of personal accountability and responsibility. If people want to decry the issue of excessively high college tuition, go to a college that has lower tuition costs. The money of the 1% is tied up in investments which is the back bone of the economy. If people would actually work for a living they could survive without taking any money from the 1%. Safety nets and welfare should not even exist. They only do because of the hopes that people who land on welfare will vote for the people who promise them free stuff. All of the people who want free stuff should go to Socialist countries and see how their ideas are working there. All of the b.s. about some people hoarding the wealth is laughable. When there are no wealthy people left, all of these people who gripe about wanting other people to pay for their stuff will probably wake up.

    • Ragnar, no wonder you feel the way you do. In your mind, people who need help are shiftless, lazy bums, and rich people are fine citizens who want to help America grow.
      It’s not that simple. And as far as socialism, this country seems to be fine about socialism for the top 1%, and questioning why poor people need help. By the way, socialism is working quite well in the Scandinavian countries, and their citizens are happy with it.
      And Europeans would never give up their social safety nets. Nobody likes out system of health care, expensive education, few vacations, etc.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0e50fQLyebI This is a classic example of people who want free stuff. Watch it and you will see what I mean.

        • I like her. She is working toward changing an awful system. Of course, the 1% and Neil Cavuto will not like it. But something has to be done and we should start with the rich making more of a contribution.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, why should rich people be obligated to pay for something that is of no benefit to them? If a rich person chooses to pay for a person to go to college of that rich person’s own volition, that is one thing. Can you justify the hypocrisy of people who demand free public college and yet say that people who inherit wealth/estates did nothing to earn the right to them?

          • An educated population is a benefit to our country. College should be encouraged. Constantly upping tuition is a drain on our society and discourages college education. Student loan debt is higher than credit card debt in our country. It is a real hardship to young people.On the other hand, repeatedly adding wealth to the super-rich is not a benefit to society. It just makes the rest of us poorer.

  145. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, some people could have $8, 000, 000.00 in savings and have no estate at all. From my way of thinking, if people have paid their taxes to the satisfaction of society and the government, what they do with all after-tax income is none of society’s business. If any person works his or her entire life, makes good investments that builds his or her wealth into the tens and hundreds of millions (which is already taxed), why can that person not pass all hard earned money and investments down to his or her family members without it being taxed again? Taxing money that’s already been taxed just because someone has died is beyond absurd. People who want high estate taxes don’t want it for revenue reasons, just as an act of spite against a grieving family who should have every right to that money. Despite the claim that people on the Left make, no person has the right to take family money from the family members, be they living or dead, since it was already taxed. I have no right to your money and you have no right to mine whether we both have $10 or $100 million dollars to our name. The principle holds regardless of the amount. There shouldn’t be an estate tax, or even a gift tax for that matter. Something leftists need to understand: being rich isn’t a crime and shouldn’t be treated as one. Someone else having money doesn’t mean that you can take it away. The estate tax is just another excuse to take money from rich people. What’s wrong with eliminating that tax? The money was already taxed when being earned. If it is not picking my pocket or breaking my leg, I could not care less what a family does with inherited money. If you in your twisted notion of fairness want to take money that someone has inherited and give that money to someone who only wants to collect welfare and contribute nothing, try breaking into every house of a wealthy person and take all of their inherited assets and see where that gets you.

  146. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, no person has the right to take wealth from another person, period. The estate tax is not a tax on the person who died, it’s a tax on the kids- people who are getting the absolute easiest income possible, which is very much aligned with our system. Why should someone work themselves to death to provide for their families and yet all of that money goes into the hands of the government? Why does the government have a right to something you want to give someone after you die? You should think of someone as a person no matter how rich they are, and this is taking from something that a person wants to give their family after they die. It doesn’t matter that they’re rich, and it doesn’t matter that the person getting it didn’t “earn” it. That doesn’t give other people the right to it. Mind your own business. It’s just jealousy is all it is. For all of this talk about free college, there is also an inherent double-standard when we also talk about family heirs getting money that they have not earned. If you can’t see the hypocrisy there, that would make it pointless to explain.

  147. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, what gives someone the right to impose a monopoly on what constitutes an obscene amount of money? Rich people make poor people richer. No person gets a job and employment opportunities from a poor person. All of this talk about making the rich pay their fair share in taxes from people on the Left is absurd. Perfect economic equality is impossible, unless we are all equally poor.

    • Ragnar, you are always eager to defend rich people. If rich people make poor people richer, why are there so many poor people. Many rich people just like to reinvest their money, not help others. And the discrepancy between the rich and poor has never been this huge. It’s bad for the country.

  148. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, how is someone who inherits money receiving it at the expense of society? If someone gave another person $50, 000.00 at the time of the giver’s death, the recipient should have more right to that money than the government. Even if someone inherited a significant amount of money, that money can only sit in a bank account for so long before it is used and ultimately gets flowing back into the economy. The government has no business telling us who we can leave our already taxed financial assets to when we die. Who has a right to decide what a fair share of someone’s income is that should go to taxes? Leftists always find some excuse to conjure up the the notion that a lazy ass rich kid is going to inherit the estate. Even if that’s the case, too friggin bad. It is wealth that was already taxed when earned. Stop worrying about how much money everyone else has and mind your own business. Despite all of the claptrap spewed by some people, wealth inequality is not bad. Perfect equality is unreachable in any economic model. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” Even if it is argued that you are not taking money from a dead person, the fact of the matter is that government has shown itself to be incapable of spending money responsibly. People who argue that repealing the estate tax will lead to the rich exploiting the poor is an absurd argument to make. Those on the Left should quit worrying about how to get their hands on other people’s money. Rich people already pay the large majority of revenue to the government. Someone could have $15, 000, 000.00 invested in stock and have no estate at all. Are you doing to advocate punishing people who are sensible with their money and reward those who are not?

  149. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, under no circumstance should the government take the majority of our income. It may not be fair in the eyes of some people when other people have more money than the people who have less, however, life is not always fair. Some people may say that it is unfair that someone inherits wealth, however, these people should mind their own business.

  150. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that this detail may elude some people who feel like they are entitled to things that belong to other people, however, with the exception of the rich people who got that way by screwing us over, I don’t see the problem with having some rich people in society. If you want a wealth tax, anything higher than 15% is unreasonable, regardless of how much wealth a family has.

  151. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that there is a disconnect among some people regarding this fact, however, rich people make poor people richer. A lot of people claim that giving rich people tax breaks does not help anybody but the rich. Of course, these people who complain about that are very likely the same people who want free stuff at our expense.

    • If what you say is true, Ragnar, why are the rich getting richer, and the poor poorer?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, politicians often divide Americans between “the rich” and “working people,” implying that the rich don’t work for their money. Several studies indicate that the rich work very hard for their wealth. The rich are not sitting by the pool, sipping their cocktails; they are sitting in their offices, working their behinds off. We also hear constantly that the rich need to “pay their fair share.” But the rich already pay a disproportionate share of taxes. The richest 1 percent of Americans earn 20 percent of all income in America but pay 38 percent of income taxes. The top 5 percent earn slightly more than one-third of U.S. income while paying nearly 59 percent of income taxes. One might suggest, therefore, that the wealthy already pay nearly double their “fair share.” Of course other taxes, such as payroll taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, and the like, tend to be more regressive, mitigating this somewhat. But even if you include all types of federal, state, and local taxes, the wealthy pay a higher proportion of taxes than their share of income would warrant. Some people have proposed a wealth tax. A wealth tax will discourage people from being wealthy meaning that there will be laws likely to leave new companies and current companies with little or no incentive to expand. The rich are already paying more in taxes than they earn. Personally, I would trust a billionaire to be more responsible with his or her money than the government. According to Leftists, if someone has more than you, you are morally justified in stealing it. That same logic was being used to justify theft of land from the Native Americans via forced relocation and theft of labor of the African Americans via slavery.

        • Why are you always promoting the welfare of the rich, Ragnar? They’re doing quite well as it is. They don’t need your help.

          For instance, Three dynastic wealth families—the Waltons, the Kochs, and the Mars—have seen their wealth increase nearly 6,000 percent since 1982. Meanwhile, median household wealth over the same period went down by 3 percent.
          These three wealth dynasties own a combined fortune of $348.7 billion. That’s more than four million times the median wealth of U.S. families.
          The dynastic wealth of the Walton family grew from $690 million in 1982 (or $1.81 billion in 2018 dollars) to $169.7 billion in 2018, a mind-numbing increase of 9,257 percent.
          Three individuals—Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett—still own more wealth than the bottom half of the country combined.
          A third of the members of the Forbes 400 own fortunes derived from companies that were founded by earlier generations.
          The 15 wealthiest multi-generational dynastic families on the Forbes 400 own a combined $618 billion. Their parents or other ancestors founded all of the companies from which their wealth is derived.
          The Forbes 400 combined own $2.89 trillion dollars, more than the combined wealth of the bottom 64 percent of the United States. It’s also more than the GDP of Britain, the 5th-largest economy in the world. Just 45 individuals own half of this wealth.
          (stats from inequality.org)

          “The central issue is we’re developing into a plutocracy. We’ve got an enormous number of enormously rich people that have convinced themselves that they’re rich because they’re smart and constructive. And they don’t like government, and they don’t like to pay taxes.”
          PAUL VOLKER, FORMER CHAIRMAN OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, you may not be aware of this statistic, however, the top 10% pay 70% of all taxes but only make 40% of the money so the rich pay enough taxes. People who say, “The rich need to pay their fair share in taxes” do not seem to get the fact that they pay the majority of the nation’s taxes.

          • The rich should pay high taxes–they’re rich! And they’ve benefited from everything this country has to offer: roads, schools, favorable laws, etc.

  152. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, no person has the right to take wealth from another person by force. “But the inheritance tax is not taking money from the deceased,” some people will say. You have no rights to anyone else’s wealth, neither do I and not society or a government that refuses to rein in its profligate spending. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to want to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” “Wait, wanting to tax inherited money is not greed. The recipient(s) did nothing to earn it, so they should have no right to it,” will be a claim that some people make. Even if someone did nothing to earn the money that was inherited, the person who left him or her that money did work for it, so this should be between the giver(s) and the recipient(s) only. Even if wealth was generational, what is the problem? If someone is smart with his or her money and another person cannot manage his or her money well, who has more good sense in that regard?

  153. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem with the estate/inheritance/death tax is that it amounts to double taxation. Some people could have $8, 000, 000.00 in savings, assuming that these people were smart with their money and not having an estate at all. Are you going to suggest that this be considered wealth and advocate a high tax rate on that already taxed financial asset? The same people who gripe about the idea that elimination of the estate tax is a handout to the wealthy would change their tunes if they came into possession of estates. According to some people, once a person is dead there is literally no owner of any wealth that this person created. These people seem to believe that giving any family members any form of financial assets is to espouse a nanny state where these people would not need to work. If we have a 100% estate tax, not that any sane person would support that, it is just another way of saying that the government takes all of the wealth you have accumulated over your lifetime when you die. Such taxation would de facto abolish private property and wealth accumulation in the U.S.A. immediately, as there would be no incentive to accumulate money or property. Such an economy would have to become fully socialist, collapse or revert to back to a smaller estate tax. Whether money is legally earned or inherited, it belongs to the individual that earned it and then ultimately becomes the property of the person who inherited it. I don’t care how much money someone has, I cannot support stealing money from dead people. They earned it, their descendants should be able to keep it. “But their descendants did nothing to earn it,” will be the claim that some people make. These people who complain about other people inheriting money is childish. Why is society more entitled to any wealth that family members want to leave to their heirs than the family heirs?

  154. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, a clear distinction should be made between someone who gets their wealth by stealing from other people and someone who earns their wealth and wants to leave that to other people of his or her choosing. “Inheriting wealth will deprive the government of revenue,” some people will say. Even so, that is just too bad. “Society is entitled to the assets that you want to leave to future generations.” Why is society entitled to something that you want to leave to future generations? Society did nothing to earn that wealth. “But the family heirs did nothing to earn it,” inheritance tax advocates claim. Even so, the family earned it and paid taxes on it. I would rather leave millions in inherited assets to family members instead of giving it to a government that cannot get its fiscal house in order.

  155. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, one thing I find to be interesting is how the people who advocate stealing from the wealthy in the name of fairness are the exact same people who would have supported forced relocation of the Indians from land that belonged to them, as well as theft of the labor of African Americans via slavery. Multiple forms of theft are involved. That of labor of the African Americans through slavery, that of land via forced relocation of Indians from land that they had a claim to already, as well as productivity and wealth, something that belongs to all of the people, not the government.

    When we were told that we are all created equal, we all had equal rights under the law. Equal rights do not necessarily mean having equal outcomes in life. A right to a pursuit of wealth does not automatically meant that it will always be acquired.

  156. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if some family heads of household went to their graves with $15, 000, 000.00 to their names, who they elect to leave that money to is none of society’s business. To say that the money should be taxed again because another person has the money is just a punishment for the recipient. Some people believe that when living people have died who have earned a lot of money and paid a lot of taxes should no longer be free to leave that money to the people of their choosing.There should be a 0% estate tax. The value of the estate was already taxed when it was first earned. To double tax an estate is unethical on every turn. The majority of small farms are worth $4, 000, 000.00. These farms have been in families for a century and then the mafia comes along wanting half forcing the estate to sell the farm in order to pay the tax. It’s criminal.

  157. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I know that many people on the Left face a severe disconnect from reality in this regard, however, rich people make poor people richer. No person looking for a job gets employment from a poor person. Some people say that giving the rich tax breaks, does not help anyone but the rich. Really? Where is the evidence of that? When rich people earn money, they use that money to buy things from people poorer than themselves. They use the money they earn, to then help poorer people earn money. But when the rich are taxed heavily, they are actually causing those rich people to have less money to give to poorer people. Leftists are fueled by envy. They’ve turned envy into justice. It’s not about helping the poor, it’s about bringing down the rich. No person is entitled to anything that is produced by another person. All of this tax the rich nonsense is not about fairness or equality. Its about taking what somebody else has because some people are too lazy and have come up with too many excuses to try and achieve it yourself. That’s what Leftist ideology is truly based on. According to them, if we bitch hard enough about this, maybe society will take care of us. Leftist morals are inverted. They believe forcefully taking the fruit of people’s labor is justice and compassionate and someone wanting to keep most of the fruits of their labor is evil/wicked/greedy.

  158. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I will concede the point that taxes are the price we pay for living in a civilized society. However, the estate/death tax is draconian. That wealth was already taxed. “But there is a $5, 000, 000.00 estate tax exemption,” will be the claim that estate tax advocates make. Some people could have more money than that in savings and have no estate. Are you going to advocate a significant wealth tax on the family that has that money? It is a false argument to make when people claim that someone is getting tax-free money, as that money was taxed when it was earned.

  159. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you accused me of being an advocate for the wealthy. That is absurd. I do not believe that any person should have something at the expense of another. Some people have advocated for a universal basic income, as well as an increased minimum wage. Do you have any thoughts on either?

  160. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, some people have suggested having a 100% estate tax. I personally believe that the estate tax is immoral, regardless of the income level it applies to. Estate taxes are anachronistic. Why would we go backwards? What’s the point in building wealth and succeeding if it’s all going to the government? Even with a sizable exemption, with a high tax rate, that basically translates to government saying, “We know that you have paid your share of taxes, however, we feel that your heirs do not deserve to have the right to money you want to leave them.” Even if generational wealth is created, that money would have to be put back into the economy eventually. Even if a family never has an estate, at least not in the traditional definition, that family could have $10, 000, 000.00 in savings. Are you going to advocate that the government come in and take 65% of that from said family?

    • Respectfully, Ragnar, you seem overly fixated on the estate tax (based on the number of posts I have received from you). Please use some of your energy on people who really need help, like the 50 million or so who live in poverty in this wealthy country. The wealthy don’t need your help, but those who are hungry and lhomeless do (not all of whom have substance abuse problems), I’ve never heard of anyone going hungry from the estate tax.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, $20, 000, 000, 000, 000.00+ in debt, with the government not showing any inclination to want to pay it down, as Barack Obama said, is irresponsible and unpatriotic. Probably the most truthful thing he has said. You said that you would not mind a top tax rate of 70%, if I recall correctly. If someone earned $3, 000, 000.00 a year and had a 70% tax on everything above that, that person could still be very comfortable. The top 10% pay 90% of taxes.

        If someone got his or her wealth through theft, that is immoral. If someone earned his or her wealth fairly, why does government have any right to that? I find it to be interesting how the same Party that wants to steal from the wealthy in the name of “fairness” stole the labor of African Americans (Slavery,) as well as the ratification of the 16th Amendment, when the income tax was Constitutionally prohibited under Article 1, Section 8.

  161. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, wealth cannot be multiplied by dividing it. Related to how you accuse me of advocating for the wealthy over the poor, such a claim is absurd. There is a difference between giving help to people who need it and enabling people to continue certain lifestyle choices. Related to people going hungry and homeless, part of the problem is unresolved substance abuse issues. If I gave someone $30.00 for a meal and then that person purchased alcohol instead of food, that would make me an enabler.

    • Ragnar, you paint a picture of welfare recipients as substance abusers. I agree that is a problem but only a small part of welfare recipients are such. Would you punish all poor people for the sins of a few? What about people who truly need help? There are millions of them who don’t share in the American dream, and their numbers are growing because all the money in tax breaks and other benefits goes to the wealthy. and wealth inequality is growing all the time. Surely you have compassion for those down on their luck, right?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I was not expressly painting a broad picture of people who land on welfare as substance abusers. Related to people going hungry and homeless, here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lcU_pWsqbJw The guy making the presentation clearly missed the point (what a surprise) that John Stossel was making. Be sure to read the comments that follow the video.

  162. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I get the fact that a family who earns $2.5, 000, 000.00 a year would need that money less than a family that earns $15, 000.00 a year. The problem is multi-fold. One issue is the fact that employees are paid inadequately, regardless of how hard they work. I would also like to address the fact that taxes are also taken out of employer and employee paychecks, such as the payroll tax. We could replace the payroll tax with a simple flat business tax at 15%, which would go to fund Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. “But that will raise the prices of items that we buy,” would be an objection I can hear. Really? If you had more disposable income as a result of more take home pay, you could still afford the items in question.

  163. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, a wealthy person could have stagnant income and significant savings. Unless people who write tax laws have economic degrees that we do not know about, these people should go back to school for a semester in economics.

  164. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I am not dealing in any stereotypes. I was speaking of people who find themselves on welfare due to substance abuse issues. Not saying in absolute terms that 100% of people on welfare are there because of substance abuse issues. There is a big difference. That you are unable (or unwilling) to make the distinction is somewhat surprising.

    • I see your point and understand the distinction, Ragnar. Still, in general, you more often than not use those stereotypes when you sympathize with rich people paying estate tax and the kind of people on welfare.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the difference between the people who get welfare checks and people who inherit money is that people who get welfare checks get those tax-free. Inherited money was already taxed when it was earned.

  165. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, between giving government $75, 000, 000.00 in estate tax revenue to waste on fruitless endavors and allowing the family that was subjected to the estate tax to keep every penny, the family should get to keep every penny. All of this talk of obscene amounts of money is absurd. Why is it obscene for people to get financial rewards based on merit and not obscene to take that money and give it to someone who is on welfare because of substance abuse issues that keep them from working at a meaningful job?

    • Heavy on the stereotypes, Ragnar. That rich people got that way on merit, and that welfare recipients are substance abusers. There are many exceptions to your stereotypes. Many people get rich by inheritance, and many people are poor because they can’t pay for expensive medical care.

  166. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, generational wealth should not be viewed as a bad thing.

  167. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the only legitimate argument in favor of the estate tax is that it prevents creation of aristocracies. Other than that, all arguments for it are absurd. Even if aristocracies are created, what is the gripe about it? If generational wealth was created, even encouraged, that money would have to be put back into the economy at some point. If a sum total of $25, 000, 000, 000, 000.00 was created through savings, investment and inheritance, a good share of that money could go to paying off the national debt. After that, if people wanted to work to create even more wealth, that wealth could contribute to increase every person’s standard of living. I find it to be interesting that those who advocate for the estate tax would be very likely to change their tunes if an estate came into their possession. What difference does it make if someone inherits any significant wealth? If society is not being victimized, what is the gripe? I could see someone with a Cadillac and say, “I want what that person has, so I am going to take it,” or I could say, “That is a nice Cadillac and I will want to save up the money to purchase one of my own.” Who gets screwed over by someone inheriting financial assets? Nobody. Those people who gripe about the elimination of the estate tax being a handout to the rich ignore the fact that the rich people pay more in taxes than the rest of us.

    Even if people who inherit money did not do anything to earn it, family money belongs to the family. Not the government. The best people to tax would be the rich. However, putting a grieving family through the unwarranted hassle of the estate tax is heartless. “But it’s only impacting 0.01% of the population,” will be the argument of estate tax proponents. Even so,an immoral tax is still immoral.

    What if a family has investments in stock and passes any acquired money to an heir without having an estate? By what right does society get to say, “You have too much money, so give that to us or else”? Those dopes who gripe about people inheriting money are the exact same people who want free stuff at our expense. Free college? Free medical care? A legally mandated $15.00 an hour minimum wage?

    Why does the government have more of a right to something that one person wants to leave to his or her family than that family? Given the profligate spending of our government, an added revenue source via the estate tax seems to be counterintuitive.

  168. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, advocates of an increased estate tax only advocate that as an act of spite. Even if it is fully repealed, what is the problem? No person who inherits money from their parents or any other person does so at the expense of society. What if someone wants to leave their children money that they have earned and saved? Between subsidizing people who are on welfare and letting family heirs keep every dollar that they have inherited, the family heirs deserve the money more.

  169. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, after all taxes have been paid to the satisfaction of the government, state and federal, what the people do with the after tax income is not anybody’s business. This obscene amount of money, as you call it, did not come from nothing.

    • You’re right, Ragnar, their obscene wealth came from gaming the system, avoiding taxes, inheriting money and buying politicians. The rules are made to benefit the rich, which is why we have such obscene wealth inequality.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, my point is that it did not originate out of thin air. Some people may get rich on the backs of other people. That is immoral in my view. A lot of people may get rich due to long-term savings and investments.

        Many people may get wealth through inheritance and create a lot more along the way. I find it immoral for any person to get rich on the backs of other people. Having said that, was there any ripoff of people who purchased a vehicle from any number of suppliers?

  170. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, part of the explanation for the “obscene” amount of wealth that these people have is due to other people buying their products. This “obscene” amount of wealth did not come from thin air. Part of the problem with the homelessness epidemic is related to substance abuse issues. The rich people do not cause this problem.

  171. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the problem with the tax code is that we do not get to decide what is done with our tax dollars. Yes, we get to vote for public officials who make these decisions, however, the issue seems to be a lack of government accountability to the people. Advocates of the estate tax can say, “We are just advocating taking money from deceased people” all they want. However, once that money has been specifically directed to go to any living relatives, the government has no right to any further bites of that apple. Who is entitled to a family’s money-that family or the government?

    What if you invest in stock and then pass that stock down to an heir? Is the government going to say, “You are making too much money off of stock, so we are going to take 65% of the money from you”? Just wait until these people who gripe about the rate of the estate tax needing to go up find themselves in possession of estates, then watch these hypocrites say, “We don’t want the estate tax. It’s our money.”

    If you want some degree of an estate tax, maybe a maximum rate of 15%. However, most of the money should be kept in the family. Since family heirs are in the family, since by its nature and definition family money was earned by the family, that family should be free to keep most of it.

  172. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, without the potential risk discouraging financial investment, what is a reasonable tax rate on any income that you get from investment in the stock market, estate sales and capital gains?

    • I see no reason that investment income should not be the same as ordinary income. Why should rich investors get a better deal (as they do now).

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, we are in full agreement there. I know that investors do what they do to make money. Having said that, what is an ideal rate for capital gains taxes without discouraging financial investment? 25% seems to be reasonable in my opinion.

  173. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even if someone never has an estate, at least not one that could defined in the conventional sense of the word, some people could have $15, 000, 000.00 in savings that was accumulated. Why should government not get to impose a 65% tax on a lifetime of savings and yet it is justifiable to have a 65% estate tax? You might as well encourage the wealthy to pack up their bags and leave the country, which means that they would take all of their wealth with them. The other problem with the tax the rich theory is that they have greater economic mobility. All they would have to do is pack up their bags, with their wealth and everything else, then leave the country, leaving us without any functional source of tax revenue that they would be contributing under ideal circumstances.

    • The wealthy didn’t leave the country years ago when taxes were. much higher, Ragnar, and they won’t with a higher estate tax. They like it here and know damn well they aren’t paying their fair share. You know what Amazon paid in taxes last year? $0! The playing field is tilted to favor the rich, and it’s bad for everyone else. You seem to be obsessed with the estate tax, which only affects the very wealthy. I don’t know why this is so important to you.

  174. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, after all taxes have been paid to the satisfaction of the government, what the citizens do with the money after that is not the business of the government. Even if wealth is inherited, the government has no right to come in and say, “You have no right to decide who gets to have access to your assets when you die.” Leftists should stop obsessing over what other people have and grow up. Why do you support this kind of tax in the first place? You are still advocating taking their money for no good reason. They made that money and they deserve to do whatever they please with it. Reducing or eliminating the death tax may lead to a significant decrease in government revenue. Even if that is the case, that is just too bad. If someone inheriting millions neither picks our pockets or breaks our legs, what is the big deal?

    • I think I understand what you are saying, Ragnar. Our difference I think is that I think the government needs to collect money from its citizens, in order to provide services that are needed by the population.. One of the ways of doing that is by the estate tax, which has provided revenue for a long time. You seem to find the estate tax sacred and untouchable. I don’t.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, despite the severe disconnect that proponents of the estate tax seem to have from reality, people who inherit wealth from their parents are not doing so at the expense of society or the government. The parents are the final decision makers in that regard. “But children are receiving wealth that they have not earned,” so say proponents of the estate tax. I could never condone taking money from a grieving family. To do so is heartless.

        • Heartless to me, Ragnar, concerns those people who can’t make it on minimum wage. Heartless is not taking into consideration the 50 million Americans living in poverty. Or the 1 in 7 Children who go hungry in America. I’m less concerned with wealthy heirs, grieving or not.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, you make a valid point. The problem is that any family could have $8, 000, 000.00 in long-term savings without having an estate from the standpoint of taxes. Why should a family who is smart with their money be required to pay more in taxes than people who are frivolous with their money?

            If $23, 000, 000, 000, 000.00 in wealth was created over many generations without having any taxes applied to that, if people were encouraged and provided incentives to save and invest money, every person would see an improvement in his or her quality of life, as well as that of the person’s family members.

            You said, “Heartless to me, Ragnar, concerns those people who can’t make it on minimum wage. Heartless is not taking into consideration the 50 million Americans living in poverty. Or the 1 in 7 Children who go hungry in America. I’m less concerned with wealthy heirs, grieving or not.”

            If 1 family out of 10 had a time of economic hardship and could not hold down a job because of substance abuse issues, that is on them, not on society. If 1 family out of 10 just needed temporary assistance until the economy improved to the point where the head of household could return to the workforce, that is a separate matter.

  175. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, what about a compromise? What if we kept the estate tax, however, it could be avoided if that money was reinvested in a business to help it grow and expand, thus creating jobs? Yes, the people who would be subjected to it would have to uphold their part of the bargain, however, reinvestment of that money could mitigate the estate tax liability or eliminate it. Some money should be left to each of the family members for personal use, however, if a good share of it went to build or expand an existing business, it is a win-win. The family would have enough money to be comfortable and businesses could have effective capital formation. If you sit on the money, you would pay the estate tax, however, if you reinvest the money into a business, the money is tax-free.

    • Depending on how it is written,Ragnar, I think you are on to something.
      Good ideas.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if we maintained the estate tax, I would prefer that each respective state make its own laws. Some states may want a high estate tax, some may want a moderate estate tax and some may want a low or no estate tax. The problem is that the estate tax is basically picking the pocket of a deceased person. I would honestly prefer the possibility that all family members that are subjected to it be still in the world of the living. If you sell an estate and want to downsize, you pay the tax on the income from the sale. Should you want to pass that money down to future generations, have at it. For the record, I am not an extremist in either regard relating to the estate tax. I just oppose it at the federal level.

  176. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, at the time of the estate tax being implemented, if it had actually been voted down again and again, with proponents of it still pushing for it, the effort would be self-defeating. The only motivating factor for the estate tax is spite and envy, not fairness. Who cares how much money someone wants to leave to another person? If it neither picks a person’s pocket or breaks that person’s leg, what is the problem? If someone was left $15, 000, 000.00 by another person, with the knowledge that it would be gone in 6 months, that would leave the federal government without significant revenue for 6 months. What is better for the economy-having someone hold on to $15, 000, 000.00 for 6 months and invest that money in a business and create jobs for people with higher wages, thus expanding the tax base or giving the government that money to waste on things that do not benefit society at all? Why do people who work hard to provide for their families get punished with the prospect of an estate tax, assuming they are liable for it, while people who collect welfare benefits free of tax get a pass?

    On the issue of wealth and income inequality, I shall address that using pizza as a comparison. If you create fewer pizzas and have more people, some of the people will get more slices than other people by default. Assuming that more pizzas are created, that would increase the number of slices for the people who would otherwise be left out of the opportunity to enjoy it. If you have an unequal number of pizza slices, some people get more than other people. How does that get resolved-by taking a few slices of pizza from the people who have more or just making more pizzas?

    • Sorry, Ragnar, but you seem obsessed with this topic and keep writing about it. Since the Estate Tax only affects multi-millionaires and billionaires, I don’t know why it is so important to you. Neither one of us is going to change our opinion on this subject, perhaps it would be best to move on to other topics.

  177. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, how can it be seen as greedy to accumulate more, but is it not seen as being greedy to want to take what someone else has simply because they have more? Even if aristocracies were the end result of the estate tax being eliminated, that is just too bad.

  178. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if someone was left $2.5, 000, 000.00 at time of death of the person who wanted the recipient to have the money, the government should have no right to it, period. As harsh as this sounds, the estate tax is essentially the government giving the middle finger to a grieving family. As true as it may be that people who inherit wealth did nothing to earn (or deserve) it, if that wealth was left to them on the whims of the people who made that decision, the government has no right to say, “You were left $15, 000, 000.00,” so we are taking 50% of it from you and you can’t do a damn thing about it.” Why is a family that gets welfare checks that are tax-free or the government more entitled to our money than we are? If all of these people who gripe about other people inheriting estates and by extension a great deal of wealth inherited a great deal of their own wealth at some point down the road, these people would probably fight the estate tax, as well, thereby making them hypocrites.

    • The government deserves and is entitled to collect taxes to provide the services that make our citizen’s life better. True, everyone can find something to complain about regarding the government’s choices. But the estate tax should not be exempt. It only affects the very wealthy and they continue to gain wealth while most Americans are falling behind. The estate tax is a good way to close the massive wealth inequality that goes wider all the time.

  179. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, perfect equality is impossible, unless we are all to have nothing equally. Those on the Left think fairness=taking money from people like me by force and arbitrarily electing to give it to someone else. People that say, “The rich need to pay their fair share,” which they pay way more than their fair share in my view, should stop whining and actually work for a living. Do something productive with your life and make the best of it. The reason I want the estate tax to be eliminated is that it will eliminate one source of revenue that the government can use and waste on pointless things. Between giving the government $15, 000, 000.00 in tax revenue via the estate tax to waste on pointless things and allowing the family and by extension their heirs to keep every penny, the family and their heirs should be able to keep every penny. When these people who speak in favor of the estate tax get estates, they will be very likely to fight the estate tax, thus making them hypocrites. Here is another thing to consider: If a family member that inherits $4, 000, 000.00 built a business with that money and saved up the rest of it, the remainder could be used for other things. Generational wealth should be encouraged for 3 reasons: 1: It will encourage people to create business ventures that employ people, thus increasing greater participation in the workforce. 2: Since that wealth was already taxed when it was earned, whatever the person does with the money after that is none of society’s business. 3: If the money was tax-free for the heirs, they could pay for college educations and aim for degrees that would be suited to whatever line of work they went into after they graduated.

  180. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, since it neither picks a person’s pocket or breaks a person’s leg in any event if the estate tax is repealed, how is that a bad thing? People work their entire lives to be able to provide comfort and security for their children. Regardless of the amount they are able to leave their children, you shouldn’t be penalizing them and their children by taking away even a penny. I’m against this as I’m against any estate tax to begin with. If the estate tax was not a thing at all, if it was pushed to be enacted again and again, with it being voted down each and every time, that should cause it to be axed completely. The estate tax is bullshit. Regardless of the type of tax increase, if it was called for again and again, all while resulting in no government revenue, the message should be received after awhile that the plan is not working out so well. The estate tax is the biggest bunch of bullshit ever. Why should anyone be taxed for leaving their children an inheritance? Those people who bitch and complain that the rich are going to pass on money that they actually busted their asses for in order to provide a better quality of life for their families when they die is wrong on so many levels. Who the hell thinks that people who leave their progeny over the 500 million mark will pay those 65% rates? This won’t affect them or the billionaires at all. Those people can afford to hire the lawyers who will put it all in a trust and figure out how to divvy it up and avoid paying any estate taxes. This tax is a disaster for small businesses, who are already hurt by business taxes and bureaucratic strangulation, while the mega international corporations that can afford to pay a few million in lawyer fees avoid corporate taxes all the time. Why should anyone be taxed for leaving their children an inheritance? Why do you support this kind of tax in the first place? You are still taking their money for no good reason. They made that money and they deserve to do whatever they please with it. Why this tax exists I have no idea. Between a government that cannot keep its spending in line getting a shitload of revenue from the estate tax and a family that is truly deserving of being able to keep that money, the family should get that money, period. Don’t like that? That is just too bad. If a person who is at death’s door wants to leave all of the money to his or her family at the time of death, that is not the business of society or of the government. If everyone had all their wealth taken at the point of their death. It would give massive incentives for people to waste their money shortly before their death because they could not pass it on to their children. All those resources would be wasted into entertainment and vices, rather than reinvestment into the structure of the system for the family heirs. You claim to advocate for a higher estate tax. That is all fine and good, however, when all of the wealth is spent and the people who are subjected to it die flat broke, the government would not get any estate tax revenue, thus making the idea self-defeating. Any tax on inheritance, whatever the percentage, would have negative affects on society. Right off the bat, an inheritance tax sets a mindset that some people are entitled to that which belongs to other people. Estate tax is solely motivated by envy.

    • I get it, Ragnar, you feel strongly about this subject. We disagree. If you wish to understand my position, please read https://www.cbpp.org/research/federal-tax/ten-facts-you-should-know-about-the-federal-estate-tax. Since the estate tax only applies to estates over $11.4 million dollars, and only applies to amounts above that threshold. So it hardly applies to any family farms and small businesses. In fact, it only applies to 0.2% of estates. I understand you passionately oppose it, but I see no compelling reason to eliminate this tax.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, if the estate tax must be kept at all, I would prefer that it be done at the state level and have it by paid if the estate is sold with all family members still being among the living. The reason you see no compelling reason is probably due to your not being adversely affected by it. Here is a case of typical Leftist logic: This tax is not affecting me, so I want to keep it as an act of spite against grieving families that will be affected by it.

  181. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the worst effects of the inheritance tax are rarely discussed. The estate tax penalizes families that have a future orientation, which sends repercussions throughout the whole economy. Not only do these taxes discourage the long-term investment necessary for a high level of economic growth, but they prevent families from accumulating, over several generations, the resources required for starting a family business or for preparing for uncertain times ahead. Between giving the government $15, 000, 000.00 in estate tax revenue to blow on things that do not benefit society and allowing a family to keep it all tax-free, I vote that the family gets it. Even with the possibility of generational wealth, if it neither picks my pocket or breaks my leg, I see no real reason to make a big deal out of it. If every family that was subjected to the estate tax spent themselves into financial ruin, neither their heirs who should get the money in my opinion or the government, the least deserving of that money, would get it. Here is an analogy for you: A wealthy person has saved up a lot of money over the years and opens a pizzeria and makes a lot of pizzas as a result. A middle income person has a pizzeria that is small in size but is not making the same amount of money as the wealthy person. Why is that? Because of the economy being rigged in favor of the wealthier person or because the middle income person had an inadequate business model?

    • Once again, Ragnar, you are especially passionate about the estate tax, which only benefits millionaires and billionaires. Why you stick up for them so frequently baffles me. And yes, our economic system is rigged to benefit the wealthy. I’d like to see the average person get a break and the playing field leveled. Don’t you?

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, a level playing field would be nice, however, not nearly as realistic as one would expect it to be. You also never directly addressed my pizza analogy. Between one pizza being made with an unequal number of slices to go around and just making more pizzas, what is more realistic?

        The estate tax is essentially giving the middle finger to a grieving family. Of course, when do those on the Left care about grieving families when they are not related to them? It is sick and immoral that the estate tax is in existence.

        • Yes, Ragnar, those on the Left are not as sympathetic to multi-millionaires and billionaires as you are. By the same token, the Right appears not to be sympathetic to poor people.
          I suspect we disagree so much because we have different value systems, with you most passionate about causes that pertain to the wealthy (estate tax) while I am more passionate about those on the bottom ($15 an hour minimum wage). It will be almost impossible for us to agree on economic issues because of that. We just have to agree to disagree.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, this may or may not surprise you, however, I am on board with the minimum wage. I would just prefer to have it be done on a state by state basis. Let us see which states have the most job opportunities with the minimum wage increase and which states have a loss of jobs due to it. Here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRkz0HBCsyo Some of the people in the comments seem to disagree with the analysis, however, the video is interesting.

  182. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, outside of it being argued that the estate tax would be a significant source of revenue, all other arguments for it are based on spite. If someone left their family members $15, 000, 000.00 tax-free with the knowledge that it would only last for 6 months, that would leave government without a significant source of revenue for 6 months. The estate tax is a financial form of grave robbery. Even if inter-generational wealth was an end result of the estate tax being eliminated, that is just too bad.

  183. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, what makes the government that cannot keep its spending in check more entitled to the fruits of a family’s labor than the family? Why should a man and a woman who are at death’s door not be entitled to the right to decide where the money goes? You said that people who inherit money from their parents did nothing to earn that money. If a family that has paid taxes on that money wants to pass it down to future generations, that is for them to decide. Even if there was a significant degree of inherited wealth that was passed from parents to children, if it neither picks my pocket or breaks my leg, it is not really any of my business.

    • Ragnar, I would say the super-rich benefit from a rigged political system that benefits them by giving subsidies and endlessly cutting their taxes (e.g. last year’s Trump tax cut). This is because they buy off America’s lawmakers who accede to their wishes which allows them to obtain obscene amounts of wealth. Meanwhile, average or lower-class Americans struggle to just make ends meet. That is a corrupt and unfair system that doesn’t deserve to be perpetuated by their heirs.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, I am of the belief that the estate tax should only apply if an estate is sold. If all living family members decide to sell it, the income from the sale could be taxed at 30% and that would be reasonable. When I spoke to the matter of grieving families having to contend with the estate tax along with the loss of a loved one, the way you responded seemed to indicate an apathy to their pain.

        • I see an important difference between us, Ragnar. You seem to have great capacity to sympathize with rich people, while I am more sympathetic to the less fortunate. I think that is an important reason we differ on so many political issues. Am I on target, Ragnar? What is your opinion on that, and is that difference insurmountable?

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, much of what you say is incorrect. We both actually want the same thing. The area of disagreement stems from our differing methods of solving this problem. As for my last comment, I said that I would not object to the estate tax if all living family members wanted to sell it and downsize to something smaller. A 30% tax seems to be more reasonable than a 50% tax from the standpoint of the estate tax. Just my thoughts.

  184. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, there are a multitude of problems with the estate tax. The estate tax discourages savings and investment. For those Americans who think that their estates may one day be subjected to the federal death tax, the tax sends a signal that it is better to consume today than invest and make more money in the future. Instead of putting their money in the hands of entrepreneurs or investing more in their own economic endeavors, Americans are encouraged to consume it now rather than pay taxes on it later. It undermines job creation. Because the death tax discourages saving and investing, it also undermines job creation. Resources that otherwise would have been available for businesses to use to expand their operations and add new workers are consumed by people who deem it wiser to spend the money now than invest it knowing their inheritors will have to pay the death tax later. Furthermore, resources that businesses otherwise would have used to add jobs are diverted to protect families from the death tax. A problem with the death tax is that the people clobbered by it are not billionaires. More often they are ordinary Americans with medium sized estates — the millionaire next door. The death tax rewards the life of lavish and unproductive consumption it is intended to discourage. This tax says to the elderly: Live high on the hog. Wrap yourself in material comfort. Eat, drink, be merry. You can’t take it with you, and you can’t leave most of it to your kids. Your goal is to die broke — the ultimate form of tax avoidance. Meanwhile the frugal men and women who scrimp and save and build a legacy to leave to their children are hit by a tax that allows the IRS to snatch more than half. Through the death tax, we reward vice and punish virtue. If there were a prize for the most destructive tax, the death tax surely would be a prohibitive favorite. Known to policy wonks as the estate tax, this levy is a punitive form of double taxation that penalizes people for trying to create a nest egg for their children. The damage to families, though, is just the tip of the iceberg. The real problem, at least to economists, is that the death tax discourages economic growth by reducing saving and investment. For all intents and purposes, the tax code sends a perverse message to America’s entrepreneurs, investors, small-business owners and farmers: If you squander your money as quickly as possible, the government will not tax you. But if you behave responsibly and invest in the nation’s future, the government will swoop in like a flock of vultures and grab a huge chunk of your money when you die. This matters because every economic theory — even Marxism — agrees that capital formation is the key to growth. Higher living standards are possible only if people invest by setting aside some of today’s income. But a punitive death tax, especially when combined with other forms of double taxation on capital gains and dividends, reduces the incentive to save and invest. Scholars who have examined this issue estimate that the death tax has reduced America’s stock of saving and investment by nearly $850 billion. The politicians in Washington impose double taxation on interest, dividends and capital gains, but the “death tax” wins the prize for being the most self-destructive part of the internal revenue code. Adding an extra layer of tax when someone dies is an unsavory combination of bad economics and immoral grave robbing. The current policy is especially foolish since every economic theory — even Marxism — agrees that saving and investment are the keys to long-run growth and higher living standards. Simply stated, some of today’s income has to be set aside to finance tomorrow’s growth, much as a farmer has to save some of his seed for next year’s crop. Regardless of what some people may claim, there is nothing fair about taxing the estate of any person. That money was already taxed again and again. Destroying the wealthy will not elevate the poor. Everyone will end up being poor. The only way out of poverty is through education and the development of marketable skills. Because the estate tax discourages investment, it also holds down wage growth. Since businesses have less funding, they’re less able to purchase new tools and equipment. So workers are less productive and suffer slower wage and salary growth. The death tax also hammers some Americans more than others, since it especially targets landowners. Millions of farmers, ranchers and homeowners have improved their land. Yet when they die, the federal government punishes their heirs. Who benefits from the death tax? Estate tax lawyers. Life insurance companies. Large businesses — and, of course, big government. Outside of these groups, there’s no justification for it. Someone would be hard-pressed to find anything more un-American than the federal estate tax—a tax that rejects the idea of people building their American dream for themselves and for their families. Even if the repeal of the estate tax cost government revenue, too bad. If government cannot spend what it does not have, we could reduce the debt more effectively. If there were a prize for the most destructive tax, the death tax surely would be a prohibitive favorite. Known to policy wonks as the estate tax, this levy is a punitive form of double taxation that penalizes people for trying to create a nest egg for their children. The damage to families, though, is just the tip of the iceberg. The real problem, at least to economists, is that the death tax discourages economic growth by reducing saving and investment. If you want the government to take 100% of your savings when you die, then you are a Socialist. With the estate tax, it destroys almost all incentive for us to work and save our money. Even if we have people who may inherit wealth from their parents, it is between the parents and the children to decide this issue.

    • Ragnar, the estate tax applies only to estates over 11.4 million dollars. In addition, Taxes are assessed only on the value of the estate or inheritance that exceeds the threshold amount. Surviving spouses are generally exempt from these taxes, regardless of the value of the estate or inheritance.
      You seem to be very sympathetic toward the ultra wealthy, much more than you are for poor people. I think the wealthy will do quite well for themselves, and will not stop working or savings just because of an estate tax.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, your point about my having sympathy for the wealthy is absurd. Even if I never come across great wealth, I would want to see the estate tax eliminated so it minimizes an area of tax revenue for the government.

  185. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, a dead wealthy person will not need that money in the afterlife. However, if at the time of their death they want to leave assets in any amount to whoever they so choose, the government should have no say-so in the matter, period. Regarding the point that you made about advocating a higher estate tax, where you correctly said that family heirs would get money that they have not earned, you would also have to concede that the government also gets money that it has not earned.

  186. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, If you want the government to take 100% of your savings when you die, then you are a Socialist. If you want to take money from people who want to leave that money to their children at the time of their deaths, then you clearly believe that society and by extension the government, is entitled to something that they have no right to. How would you feel if someone left you $5 ,000. 000.00 and the government took all of that despite the fact that the person who left it to you had every right to do so?

  187. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, it is clear that we have polar opposite views on things like the estate tax. Inheritance tax should be seen as a crime, particularly since each dollar is subjected to multiple layers of taxation already. Many wealthy people gave away most of their wealth over their life time. What pisses big government types off is that the people got to decide where the money went and not the state. Socialist economic policies destroy societies, as evidenced over the last century. If there was a 100% inheritance tax, that can be argued to be as bad as having no inheritance tax in the eyes of some people. Personally, I believe that we should send the death tax to the dustbin of history. As I said, before you give me the b.s. about kids getting money that they have not earned, the fact of the matter is that society has no right to dictate to families what they can leave to future generations. We are in serious debt as a nation. Giving government more revenue will only give the government license to spend the money on things that are fruitless and serve no real purpose. If everyone had all their wealth taken at the point of their death, it would give massive incentives for people to waste their money shortly before their death because they could not pass it on to their children. Some people seem to disagree with the estate tax, however, they favor increasing taxes on high income people but also ask why government should tax us our whole lives and then impose taxes on our estates when we are dead. Even if you want to argue that family heirs are getting money that they have not earned, I would rather let them have it over giving it to government that cannot keep its spending in line. Instead of finding an excuse to provide government with more revenue, government should cut itself. Some people say that the rich should stop being so greedy. Why is it greed for any person to want to keep money that they earn and yet it is not greed to want to take that away from them? Acting entitled to other people’s money never works, ever. Some people argue that repealing the estate tax will provide incentives for the rich to put the money into bank accounts. Even if that is the case, the banks help to create and finance businesses with loans. Some people say that they want to see the estate tax repealed despite them not seeing a dime from it. While some people may inherit money, other people will inherit a business from their parents who literally have to sell off the business to just pay the taxes on the inheritance. Something that may be ideal if there is not an absolute repeal of the estate tax is that the tax could be avoided if money that was subjected to it was reinvested back into businesses and used to employ people. This way it could be retained, however, it would not have to be paid if the money was put to functional use.

  188. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, I had asked why you wanted to take money from a grieving family in another post. You seemed surprised by that inquiry, as indicated by your response. Whether money is legally earned or inherited, it belongs to the individual and the person or people who the individual in question wants to leave it to. Saying that you believe in a higher estate tax is basically a way of saying that government can do things better with that money than the people who inherit the money. What is a better use of inherited money-letting the recipient(s) use that money to build and expand business ventures? Using it to fund foreign wars that we should never have been involved in?

    • Your assumption, Ragnar, is that inherited money will be used to encourage business ventures. Most billionaires like to keep their money and accumulate more. I believe government can be used to improve society. And this society needs a lot of improvement. I don’t think a society of a few obscenely rich people and the majority barely making ends meet is a good thing. It’s up to the people to make sure tax money is used wisely. But we have to get money out of politics first.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, what makes you think that government can manage $18, 000, 000.00 worth of estate tax revenue and not the family that has an estate worth $18, 000, 000.00?

  189. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you said that you would advocate for higher estate taxes. If we must maintain it to some degree, I would let estate tax be a state by state thing. If some states want it, they can do it at whatever rate they elect to. For states that do not want it, they should not be required by the dictate of Washington D.C. to have it.

    The income tax was sold as targeting only the rich. Really? People who say that the rich need to pay their fair share are using rhetoric that is based in envy. Income tax infringes on the right to property and doesn’t even allow for due process of law. The Founders and Framers recognized this and that’s why they didn’t give Congress that power.

  190. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, people who say that if you make a certain dollar amount or less under a flat tax that will pay nothing are being subjected to a tax hike are clueless about some of the tax proposals that are out there. Just saying something because one believes it to be true, however, the evidence will say otherwise, is absurd. Here is an example: Let’s say that a plan proposed by someone has a $60, 000.00 tax-free threshold, with any income level above that being taxed at a flat rate of 15%. In that scenario, how are poor people being screwed over if they still pay nothing in federal income taxes?

  191. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, even though the estate tax exemption is $5, 000, 000.00 at the present, what if we kept it but one could avoid paying it if the person or family who was subjected to it put the money to good use? Creating a business that employs people, for example? If parents want to leave their kids that $1 billion, that is between the kids and the parents. The government has no business saying that the kid doesn’t deserve it or shouldn’t have it, and decide how much to take from the kid in question. Thomas Sowell said, “I have never understood why it is “greed” to keep the money you have earned but not greed to want to take somebody else’s money.” While we have some people who are bitching about how much money a wealthy person wants to leave to their family members at the time of their deaths, have people who feel like the government has a right to half of that person’s money when they die, where is the compassion for the grieving families? Just saying that children of wealthy parents or from parents at any income level have no right to keep money that they inherited free of tax is absurd. What is the logic behind the estate tax? What entitles society to someone else’s money? If someone obtains wealth and wants to give it to their kids, then that is their choice and none of the government’s business and none of the business of society as a whole. Here are a few questions for you: 1: Why should a grieving family have to pay an estate tax so government can waste it on useless things? 2: Since that money was taxed again and again, what is the gripe if a person wants to leave any money that is left to whomever they choose? 3: By what right is any person entitled to the property of any other? It doesn’t matter if people are pissed that the rich don’t pay enough taxes. Did you earn it? No. Okay, then you have no right to their money regardless of how much money they have. The fact is that over 40% of Americans don’t even pay an income tax. Why don’t you get outraged about that? Why not have a tax-free $ amount, with everything above that being taxed at the same rate? Capital gains taxes are unfair. It is not just taxes on “rich”. Its when you sell your house, or get a one time check for a good amount of money. The government takes half. Lets not go back to that crap. Add up what a single middle class person pays in taxes and its way too much! The so called rich pay 99% of the taxes already too. Class warfare is not going to fix anything. Yes, it is true that there are corrupt people that made millions by taking advantage of other people, however many of them made their money fair and square. Rich people deserve the same rights as anyone else. The U.S. government is already going bankrupt with all these tax and spend policies that keep being implemented. Under certain flat tax proposals, there is a tax-free threshold, so if you make a certain amount of money or less, you pay nothing. People who say that those who make $50, 000.00 a year or less under certain proposals will get a tax hike despite their paying no federal income taxes are liars or delusional, maybe both.

  192. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, the estate tax is probably the most immoral tax of all. Why do you want to take money from grieving families and give that to the government? If you want to raise the top marginal tax rate, fine and good. What someone wants to leave to their family at the time of their deaths is not the business of the government. Why do you give a damn about what someone else wants to do with their money if that money has already been subjected to multiple layers of taxation? Why does the government have a right to something you want to give someone after you die? You should think of someone as a person no matter how rich they are, and this is taking from something that a person wants to give their family after they die. It doesn’t matter that they’re rich, and it doesn’t matter that the person getting it didn’t “earn” it. That doesn’t give other people the right to it. Mind your own business. The estate tax is evil. So, what entitles society to someone else’s money? If someone obtains wealth and wants to give it to their kids, then that is their choice. Even if the repeal of the estate tax would not directly hurt anybody, the only argument against its repeal is based on envy. Supporting the estate tax is literally saying, “That person has money, therefore I deserve some of it.” No, it’s theft. The death tax is awful as it affects more than just rich people (for example farmers due to the value of the land they own but have little in anything else.) The estate tax should be 0%. Such taxation would essentially abolish private property and wealth accumulation in the US immediately, as there would be no incentive to accumulate money or property. You believe it’s wrong for someone to get money that they have not earned? What about the government? Government does nothing to earn the money it gets. So that renders your one point in the same context relating to someone getting something that they have not earned as invalid. You claim to not have an understanding of sympathy for the rich. While they are alive and breathing, I probably would not either. What about their families that they leave behind when they die? I have never understood the vitriol and hatred that those on the Left have for the wealthy and why they have absolutely no compunction about taking money from grieving families because they claim it is unfair for that family to get that money tax-free. Since it has already been subjected to one layer of taxation after another, I believe that any money that was saved up, regardless of the amount, should be tax-free if left for future generations.

  193. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, if you want to have a higher marginal tax rate, I do not necessarily see an issue with that. After all taxes have been paid, what a person does with the money after that is nobody’s business. Who the person in this scenario leaves that money to at the time of death is the business of the person in question and whoever is the recipient of the money, not the government.

  194. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, you claim to advocate for a high estate tax. A problem with this logic is that every dollar is subject to multiple layers of taxation. The estate tax is bullshit, so people who argue for it have an entitlement mentality. Why tax something again what was taxed before? You pay taxes when you earn that money. Why is it being taxed again? I think that is unfair regardless if the person is rich or not. One can argue that children of the wealthy have not done anything to earn that money. However, it is ultimately supposed to be between the parents and their heirs.

    • You seem to advocate for the wealthy a lot, Ragnar. I’m sure they appreciate it. In any event, wealth and income inequality is a major problem in this country and continues to widen. The estate tax is just one of several ways to get the rich to pay their fair share. Why do they get so many tax breaks? Maybe because of sympathizers like you, Or because they’ve bought off the politicians.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the estate tax is much worse than an income tax. What I don’t like is how some people feel like they are entitled to what other people have. Estate tax is theft of money that has already endured multiple layers of taxation. Stop obsessing about what other people have. If you have more money than you know what to do with, give it away if you want to. What is stopping you from doing so? The so-called rich already have ways around paying the estate tax. Get the government at the federal level out of the equation.

  195. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, regarding the issue of taxing estates, rich people rarely pay this tax anyway, so the fact that it exists at all is ridiculous. The money in the estate has already been taxed when it was earned, so this is nothing more than “double dipping.” Nobody has any right to touch what a dead person has left for someone else, period. Leftists always conjure up the “lazy ass rich kid” that’s going to inherit the estate. Even if that’s the case, too friggin bad. Get over it people. This class envy shit is going to get you nowhere in life. People on the Left should stop worrying about what everyone else has and live their own lives and make the best of them. The super wealthy already paid a higher tax rate on that money when they earned it and now we are going to tax the same money again for no other reason then they are giving it to their kids which for some reason we are viewing as wrong and immoral? Come on. How about a compromise? What if we kept the estate tax, but you can avoid paying it by instead putting an equal amount of money into employing people? That way it is either creating jobs or funding government functions, a win-win for everyone. Quit worrying about how to get your hands on other people’s money. Rich people already pay the large majority of revenue to the government.

    • I never have been able to understand the sympathy Right wing/libertarians have for rich people. The top .1 percent already own more than the bottom 90% of Americans, and the disparity is growing. I never hear any sympathy for the tens of millions of Americans who live from paycheck to paycheck (if they even get a paycheck). 1 of 6 American children face food insecurity. I never hear righties worried about them, they only care if rich Americans might be paying more taxes. I don’t get it. Enlighten me.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, one of the biggest problems we have is a lack of incentive for people to want to save money. Even if one lives paycheck to paycheck, the person who has that situation can put a certain dollar amount into savings per month and be able to create wealth. Clark Howard, a consumer advocate talks about this issue in great detail. Here are some examples where one can save money: 1: Phone bills, 2: Electricity, 3: Vehicle repairs, 4: Paid television. If you negotiate the price of each one or find cheaper options, you can save more money in the long run. Without rich people, who will open up businesses that will employ low income workers?

        • Ragnar, with the minimum wage jobs so many Americans are receiving, it is unrealistic to expect people with families and no disposable income to save enough money to make any headway. The American dream has been dying for years. Many families must choose between food or medicine. I mean, could you support a family with a low-wage job? And as far as rich people and their businesses, they are most interested in paying as little as possible to maximize profit or outsourcing to lower-wage countries.

  196. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, here is a video that I would like to get your thoughts on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWRMKqSncOc Personally, I find the estate tax distasteful, regardless of who it hits. Just saying that it is unfair for someone to have more money than another person, regardless of how the money was acquired, creates an entitlement mentality. Rich people find a way around paying this tax anyway, so it is counterintuitive that this tax even exists.

    • Like Pakman, Ragnar, I am in favor of the estate tax. Too many ultra-rich people just inherit the family money and they pass it on to the next generation, and on and on. Do the wealthiest people need more money when they already have more than they could ever use?
      Somebody has to be taxed and logically the ultra-rich should pay a lot more. Especially when most Americans, on average, have so little. I don’t understand the sympathy for the ultra-rich.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, you may feel like the government has the right to half of our stuff, however, that is not the actual reality of the situation. No person has an absolute right to the services of another person without compensating the person providing the service.

        • I feel the government needs to be funded by taxes and the rich should pay their fair share.
          The government services and the amount of taxes collected in most cases is what separates liberals and conservatives.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, if earning $250, 000.00+ equated to being rich, how high should a person who earns that be required to pay in terms of the tax rate? What about a person who earns $330, 000.00?

          • Ragnar, I just saw Elizabeth Warren on TV. She was advocating a wealth tax for the top one percent (or maybe it was 1/10 of one percent). That would be an enormous amount of money that could be used for health care, education, etc, things that benefit low and middle class citizens. The rich don’t need our help. Sounds right to me. There’s no way I could give a number for tax rates for certain citizens. That has to be worked out by Congress or those that specialize in that endeavor. 

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, the linked video was from Secular Talk. Not The David Pakman Show. People who want to maintain the existence of the estate tax are looking for excuses to mooch off of people who have already paid multiple taxes throughout the duration of their working lives.

        • I don’t know why I thought it was David Pakman, As for the estate tax, I never have understood why people are so willing to protect the money of the ultra-rich. I mean, do they really need a extra million or two if they already have multiple-millions or even billions of dollars?

  197. ragnarsbhut says:

    Arlen Grossman, one of the people who commented posted a video where Rick Santorum proposed a 20/20 tax plan that treated all income the same. I would also cut military spending and eliminate federal departments which have served no functional purpose.

  198. Arlen Grossman, my irritation with people who have a left-leaning ideology (you being an exception) stems from my perceptions that they seem to be too narrow minded and inflexible in their way of thinking. I can adjust my way of thinking if someone presents me with information, facts, data, opinions on a story that I believed to be true, however, my initial perception being proven wrong. I will do the best I can not to be too harsh with my comments. However, so there is no misunderstanding, I am not saying anything about you at all.

    • I understand, Jeffrey.I do not take your criticisms personally, but they are broad generalizations. I think the behavior you are describing here is true of both the left and the right, especially on the extremes. But when you get down to it, that is normal expected human behavior. Minds do not change easily, especially if your news sources are ideologically narrow, and in the last decade or so people’s sources have become even more rigidly narrow than ever. It’s no wonder our country is so divided. Sometimes Americans cannot agree on basic facts.Of course, the worst example of all of this is our president.

  199. Arlen Grossman, I am opposed to the estate tax personally. Having said that, if it had to be retained, I do not think the rate for the estate tax should exceed 15%. In my personal opinion, money is better spent in the private sector. Besides, the family that earned that money should be able to keep a good share of it, as well as being able to pass it on to whoever they wish. Yes, the family heirs would be getting money that they have not earned, however, if the estate tax was retained to some degree, that would lead to more revenue for the government, as well as the other taxes that pay for the functions of government. Now, regarding Rick Santorum’s idea, what would it take in your opinion to make sure that more benefits went to the poor and middle income families than to the rich?

  200. Arlen Grossman, when I said that Rick Santorum’s idea should appeal to both sides of the aisle, I mean that in the sense that both sides would win. How? It keeps the tax rate, which keeps more money in the private sector. So the conservatives get something they want. Another thing is that it does not give people who get the share of their income from capital gains an excuse to avoid paying the taxes on the gain. The liberals also win in this case. From the standpoint of working people, if they get more money in their paychecks as a result of this plan, however, the taxes are shifted more toward the rich regardless, would you be good with that?

  201. Arlen Grossman, you had said that Rick Santorum had some good ideas in his presentation. He had said that you would have a tax-free threshold of $60, 000.00 to $70, 000.00 under his plan, which means that a family that made less than that would be paying nothing in federal income taxes. What does this mean? A big win for low income and poor families. Even though I said subject capital gains tax to a sliding scale in one post, if I had to pay 20% on a potential gain. I would have no problem with this. When I had said that if my tax dollars were spent responsibly, I could care less how high my taxes are, you told me that a lot of people feel as I do. What most people who object to a flat tax do not seem to grasp is that it is not meant to benefit solely the wealthy. Yes, they would reap some benefit, however, if you have a tax-free amount, with a flat rate on anything above that, we all win. People who presently pay no income taxes at the federal level would still be free of any tax liability. I would say that if you earn $50, 000.00 a year or less, you should pay nothing. If you earn $58, 000.00, you would pay 20%, with capital gains being taxed at 20%. Part of the inequality issue is that we do not provide incentives in the tax code that encourage savings and investment.

    • Wait a second, Jeffrey. If the rich pay less than they do now, and the poor don’t pay anything, who will be funding the government? Wouldn’t there be increased taxes on the middle class? And if you say fund the government less, I would respond: then what would get cut? If it’s the military and tax subsidies for the rich, then it might work for me.

      • Arlen Grossman, if I had any say so, I would look for areas where government is demonstrably proven to waste taxpayer money and reduce the ability of the government to waste it. Regarding the estate tax, I am personally opposed to it. Having said that, if it was retained, I would make the estate tax 15%. People who have families that they leave behind at the time of their deaths should be able to leave the lion’s share of their assets to them.

        • Jeffrey, if you really want to know where I stand, read this article by Them Hartmann, someone I very much admire. https://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/they-are-coming-your-social-security-and-medicare. It’s a bit long, but covers all the important matters.

          • Arlen Grossman, I read that story thoroughly. Here are quotes from it that I take issue with: “Ever since the election of Ronald Reagan, Republicans have been working overtime to kneecap institutions that support the American middle class. And, as any working-class family can tell you, the GOP has had some substantial successes, particularly in shifting both income and political power away from voters and toward billionaires and transnational corporations.” “These programs, along with free public education and progressive taxation, are the core drivers and maintainers of the American middle class. History shows that without a strong middle class, democracy itself collapses, and fascism is the next step down a long and terrible road.” “Instead, unregulated markets—particularly markets not regulated by significant taxation on predatory incomes—invariably lead to the opposite of a healthy middle class: they produce extremes of inequality, which are as dangerous to democracy as cancer is to a living being.” “Tragically, Republicans are today planning to destroy both our nation’s progressive taxation system and our social safety net, in obsequious service to their billionaire paymasters.” Progressive taxation is a Communist/Marxist originated concept. Unless a rich person comes out and says, “The government is not taxing me enough,” all calls for taxes on the rich are based on spite and envy. A tax on our labor is reprehensible, as would be a tax on investment if the tax is to high. The estate tax is also immoral.

          • I’m glad you took the time to read Hartmann’s article. Of course, Jeffrey, the quotes you disagree with are the core of the article, and from my point of view, are very important.  I don’t understand your hostility toward taxes. Taxes are necessary in order to have a society worth living in. Taxes are needed to fund that kind of society. And those who have most benefited from our system and taken advantage of favorable breaks, should pay the most to fund it. I may not agree with how our tax money is spent, but I am glad we pay taxes in order to fund the military, infrastructure, medical advances, education, social security, Medicare, etc., and help fellow Americans who have fallen on hard times or are struggling to put food on the table. I see taxes as the price we pay to live in a decent, not selfish, society. The quote “History shows that without a strong middle class, democracy itself collapses, and fascism is the next step down a long and terrible road.” I worry we are heading down that long and terrible road with Trump and the GOP.

          • The hostility is misinterpreted. As I had said, if my tax dollars were spent responsibly, I could care less how high my taxes are. Just let me be the one to decide where that money goes, not some bureaucratic political types who cannot handle our money responsibly.

          • As I probably said before, Jeffrey, everyone thinks they can spend our tax dollars more wisely. Me included. But it will never happen because it’s not workable. So you either work together with others to make society better or you enrich yourself.  That’s about all the choices you have.

          • Arlen Grossman, the estate tax is fundamentally immoral. Just saying, “It’s unfair for someone to leave a large estate and a wealth of assets to heirs that may not have earned it” indicates an attitude of envy and spite. What if someone wants to use that money to open up a business? Why should the government be able to take a large bite out of that apple?

          • The estate tax is a joke, anyway. An individual starts paying it only after $11+ million dollars. The super-wealthy should pay the tax. We don’t need any more Donald Trumps. If you dropped the estate tax only privileged white people would benefit and become super-wealthy for doing nothing. The Walton family alone has more wealth than the bottom 40 percent of Americans. You may be okay with that but I find it obscene.

          • Arlen Grossman, even if we keep the estate tax, I say that the rate should not exceed 15%. The fact of the matter is that people who work hard and pay a multitude of taxes anyway should not be forced to fork over half of what they want to leave to their living family members to a government that cannot keep its fiscal house in order. The “it’s not fair” line of argument that those on the Left make regarding the assets that non-leftist types want to leave to future generations indicates an attitude of wanting to mooch off of these people. Yes, I get that those on the Left are freeloaders for the most part, however, these people need to stop asking for handouts so often and work for a living. Just like the minimum wage, which is basically by legal dictate, why should a business owner pay one person a set amount of money for their labor and another person the same amount if the other person does not work as hard?

          • I could live with a 15% estate tax (for those having more than $5 million). I think what you don’t take into account, Jeffrey, is how much the wealthy get in subsidies and huge tax breaks from the government (after all, they own Congress). I know you think all poor people are moochers, but the truth is that many of them are working, but don’t receive enough to live on. Hence the need for a livable wage somewhere around $15 an hour (so the government won’t have need to subsidize the working poor, which happens now. Many Walmart workers have to get food stamps to get by). And if a employer wants to pay his best workers more, he can do that. No problem there.

          • I do not think poor people are moochers. The real moochers are the big corporations and big CEO types who cheat their employees out of their fair share of the profits the business earns. With the estate tax at 15%, it may be low percentage wise. However, if it hits the wealthy people more than the rest of the population, I see no issue with that. Perhaps my generalization of those on the Left may seem harsh. You are one person who seems to be very reasonable. The issue as I see things is how these people do not seem to actively think through what their professors teach them without questioning the validity of what the teachers teach. You made a very valid point with my Joe and Steve example, where Joe who works hard would earn more money and lazy Steve would get laid off or fired.

          • You sound very reasonable in this response, Jeffrey. It’s a good thing when we see things similarly. Now if only Congress can do the same.

  202. Arlen Grossman, I know that in a marginal tax rate system you pay taxes on any dollar amount above a certain threshold. From a marginal standpoint, I do not believe the tax rate should exceed 20%. If that is not good enough, eliminate or cap most of the deductions to make up the difference. Even though I had offered an idea where capital gains was taxed on a sliding scale, even if I had to pay 20% in taxes on the potential gain, it would not deter me from making an investment if it still generated a sizeable return, ultimately resulting in more money in the long run. Here is a video for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsZVTDdQvFY I do not agree with Rick Santorum on everything he says. However, this plan should appeal to both sides of the political aisle.

    • There are some good ideas in Santorum’s presentation, Jeffrey, especially the simplicity of it, and that capital gains taxes would be the same as other income.
      But I would like to see the finished numbers, because if it ultimately just helped the rich more than working people, then you would lose me. The part about repealing Obamacare bothers me, too, as that is something that has helped a lot of mid-to-low-income Americans. But still, I can see the appeal of this idea.

      • Arlen Grossman, if we had a flat tax where earned income and capital gains were treated the same, this would still technically mean that the rich are paying more. As far as estate tax goes, I say get rid of it. Quite honestly, I believe that people should be able to keep most of what they earn. Personally, I like Rick Santorum in a lot of ways. My only issues with him are his stance on foreign policy, which seems too interventionist, his opposition to gay marriage, as well as his stance on drug legalization.

        • I believe in a higher estate tax. When you say ‘I believe that people should be able to keep most of what they earn” let’s not forget that they are dead. Their heirs would be getting money they haven’t earned.

          • Arlen Grossman, no argument there. When I say keep most of what these people earn, which they bust their asses for, I was speaking of people who are among the living. If they want to pass that money onto future generations, as well as income that was saved after taxes I see no issue with that.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, people who actively demand free stuff did nothing to “earn” the right to that either, however, they actively demand it with no consideration of the costs incurred by other people. Either everything should be free or nothing should be free. These hypocrites who claim that they want something for free and yet say that other people who get free stuff did not earn it are full of b.s. and have no grasp of reality outside of their twisted delusions.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, people who receive welfare benefits did nothing to “earn” them either. The difference between them is that welfare benefits are provided at the expense of the taxpayers without their say-so and inherited wealth is received due to a purely voluntary transaction. With the demands that rich people pay for the college tuition of the non-rich, why should someone be able to demand that the wealthy pay for their stuff and not work their own way toward that goal. Can you not see the hypocrisy in the thinking of people when they issue demands for free stuff and yet whine when other people get free stuff due to an inheritance? Regarding the people who collect welfare and yet claim that they see a certain segment of the population doing nothing to contribute to society, are they too clueless to not realize that they are speaking of themselves? Rather than asking for handouts, people who want to go to college should get jobs that may satisfy certain skill sets that they have and save up money for the endavor. People who are unable or unwilling to articulate an effective argument as to why college should be free demonstrate the reason why it should not be free. No matter how rich some people are , we have no right to their money. They earned their own wealth, so they should be free to do whatever they want with it. Even if top earners could afford to pay for the college tuition of a low income person, why should they? Somebody has to pay for all of this stuff, so why not have the people who want this stuff be required to pay for it? Redistribution of wealth from the productive to the non-productive only gives license to the non-productive to be lazy.

          • ragnarsbhut says:

            Arlen Grossman, people who want free college have done nothing to earn that either, so don’t talk out of both sides of your mouth by saying that some people deserve free college and people who inherit wealth do not deserve that.

  203. Arlen Grossman, many factors can contribute to economic ills/woes. To scapegoat rich people is not an adequate solution. These people who argue for top marginal tax rates of 91% correctly note that it is a disincentive to sit on the money they have. However, to answer another argument that these people will make is that the wealthy people would put money that they would have paid themselves back into their businesses, as well as other things that give tax write-offs and have that money flow back into the economy, that point cannot be dismissed. My only real issue with the tax the rich crowd is that for the most part, these people want to mooch off of the labor of other people and feel like they are entitled to what other people have.

    • It’s not that complicated, Jeffrey. The rich have more than enough money (some even have obscene amounts, like Jeff Bezos). At the same time, millions in this country are hungry and/or homeless. The rich should be paying a lot more in taxes to help this huge inequality among Americans. They used to pay a lot more and the economy worked just fine.

      • ragnarsbhut says:

        Arlen Grossman, why should the rich be obligated to pay for anything that happens to other people? If a family takes on a mortgage that they cannot pay, why should the rich be required to pick up the tab? Why should the rich be obligated to pay for anything that is of no benefit to them at all? Paying for welfare benefits of people who cannot hold stable jobs because of substance abuse issues? Paying for the college education of any person who is clearly able to work and yet refuses to take any initiative toward achieving that goal? Even if some people have “more than enough money,” those being your exact words, who has the right to impose a monopoly on how much wealth other people can possess? A lot of people who make that argument actively argue about how unfair life is. Nothing in life is fair or unfair. The rich need to pay their fair share in taxes? Since they pay more in taxes than the rest of us, how are they not paying their fair share? Even if we talk about fairness, that means that everyone should contribute something. A dollar, a few nickles, even a few pennies.

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