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Old 04-15-2010, 06:20 PM
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Default Taxed Enough Already Or The Other 95%?

At least in America, today is Tax Day. The "Tea Party" is going on about how they're "Taxed Enough Already." A counter-group called "The Other 95%" (named after the 95% of American households who received a tax break of some sort under Obama--see this report from the non-partisan Center for Budget and Policy Priorities for proof) is basically telling the noisy Tea Partiers to STFU. According to a CBS/New York Times poll almost a quarter of those surveyed believed the Obama administration and the Democratic Congress had raised their taxes. This simply doesn't square with reality, and demonstrates the principle of "If facts run counter to my ideology I will ignore them" mentality that seems to be more commonplace among Tea Partiers than everyone else. Since 95% of American households received a tax cut, if everyone had complete information (i.e. spin-free news) and the sample was representative, only 5% would say their taxes went up. As you can see, several times this amount erroneously believe they paid more (in federal income taxes--there are of course other types of tax but this discussion is strictly relating to federal income taxes).

According to the New York Times a majority of those surveyed as a representative sample of the United States believe the amount of taxes they pay is "fair." However, the same survey shows those involved with the Tea Party largely believe their taxes to be "unfair." In fact, the American Enterprise Institute (known to lean conservative) found in its study on taxes that most people have a bigger problem with the process of actually doing their taxes than the payment of them.

This is why I have a hard time taking the Tea Party seriously. When they pass around absolute falsehoods about the healthcare bill and complain their taxes have gone up when they haven't (among other things) it becomes increasingly difficult to see any logic to their propositions. Some enterprising Tea Partier might read the above as an "attack on my free speech" or complain that I'm "not open to other views." Unfortunately, it is at this point where I would have to say "You're welcome to your views and assertions, but when I can thoroughly debunk your claims, yet you still stick to them shrieking about conspiracies of epic proportions, I lose all respect for you as a debater. Further, it takes away from credibility that you might have had before."

If someone doesn't like my facts, I'm open to alternative viewpoints that are backed up by solid evidence. But if the "evidence" is just one Tea Partier linking to another, then I'd have to call Unreliable Authority (which is the one time in formal logic that the source itself may come under scrutiny) due to the abysmal record I've seen with Tea Partiers and reality.

</rant>

Oh, by the way, I believe my taxes are fair (I paid capital gains taxes, not income taxes this year). I just don't like how long it takes to do them since I spent two hours trying to enter everything in, though I do appreciate the government's contracts with people like TurboTax who allow free e-Filing for taxpayers meeting a certain income standard.
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Last edited by Sovereign; 04-15-2010 at 06:25 PM.
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Old 04-15-2010, 08:07 PM
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You raise some fair points. Again, I think this is more of a reaction to the fear that something worse will happen (more taxes, less rights, less free speech, less freedom to express religion, etc). For several decades now there are some groups of people who think that our country is going the way of Nazi Germany and the USSR. I don't buy this idea but I know of some people who do. Apparently there are some people who have been saying stuff like this for about 20 years now around the time of the fall of the Berlin Wall and the USSR. They are afraid of globalism, encroachments on our national sovereignty, and the "new world order."

I know this all sounds crazy but there like I have said in some other posts, it is a genuine fear. You combine this reaction to the rhetoric being spouted by the likes of Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage, etc and then you get stuff like this.

I recall that this "movement" started around the time of TARP and the stimulus package last year. Several of these people were not happy with the bailouts. I'm not either. If a company fails then they must fail. Often times it is as a result of stupid decisions. I don't know all the ramifications as to what TARP was past in late 2008. I don't know if I buy the story that was being passed around in the press.

You are right that it is silly to continue to cling to a misguided idea after it has been debunked with proper evidence. It happens all to often I'm afraid. This also goes for people on the left as well. To many people talk past each other without listening to the other side. Its sad .
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Old 04-16-2010, 04:16 AM
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Our economy is a float because of the bail out, although I'm still mad over the bonuses and some of the companies should have gone down. The only problem is that they would have all gone down at once and it would have been a mess.

I'm pretty sure my families taxes went up some. I come from a sort of wealthy family, but I'm ok with them going up. Then again I'm not the one paying them so who am I to talk.
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Old 04-17-2010, 04:00 AM
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I need to share this from my friend Ryan Piccirillo. He took his camera around the Boston Tea Party gathering. You'll like it.

Scenes From A Tea Party
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