POLITICS AND TAXATION

 

REPUBLICAN MUST READING

 

All good republicans should read Zbignew Brezinski's 215 page book, "The Grand Chessboard". A large and growing number of people believe that this book is the program for world domination that is being followed by the U.S. Military-Industrial Complex, and George W. Bush.

Mr. Brezinski says that there is only a short period when America can grab control of the center of the Eurasian continent. Once we pull the strings in the strategic center (also the home of the world's second largest oil reserves) we must then play off Europe against the Orient. This will assure that even a united Japan, China & Korea will not be strong enough to dislodge America from control of the planet's largest landmass.

In his summary, the author says the economic and human sacrifices required for the pursuit of world domination are not congenial to democratic instincts. Mr. Brezinski suggests that Americans would only support such sacrifices if they were provided with a deiect external challenge comparable to the attack on Pearl Harbor. The Grand Chessboard was published in 1997.

This Nazi-like plan for world domination must have fallen on sympathetic eyes when our President read it. In 1942, during the Second World War, Prescott S. Bush (grandfather to our currnet President) was either a director of, or a top executive in four corporations that were seized by the US Government under the "Trading With the Enemy" act. The four corporations were: the Union Banking Corporation, the Holland-America Trading Corporation, the Seamless Steel Equipment Corporation, and the Silesian-American Trading Corporation. A financial godfather to all these businesses was the investment banking house, "Brown Brothers-Harriman". Prescott Bush was the managing director of Brown Brothers-Harriman.

Prescott's son George (our President's father) founded Zapata petroleum with a large loan from Brown Brothers-Harriman. For many years, starting in ther late fifties, the CIA used Zapata's oil rigs (on the Cay Sal Bank in the eastern Gulf of Mexico) to stage sabotage and terror raids to Cuba.

While John Deutch was CEO at Brown Brothers-Harriman it was purchased by Germany's largest bank, Deutsche Bank. Shortly afterward Mr.Deutch was named as the new Director of the CIA. In the week before 911 a vastly abnormal number of "put options" were sold on both United and American Airlines. (A put option is a bet that a stock will drop.) Perhaps by chance, the hijackers used those two airlines to smash American symbols. The great majority of the put options were purchased through Deutsche Banks's US subsidiary, Brown Brother-Harriman.

Read "The Grand Chessboard" by Zbignew Brezinski. Be a good Republican.
P.S. As of summer '08 Barak Obama's prime foreign policy advisor is . . . Zbignew Brezinski.

 

WOP - the Wealth Over People Curve

The "Wealth Over People" curve is the inverse of the Distribution of Wealth. All the people in a nation are ordered by wealth (richest first) along the bottom scale (called the "P" scale). Above the leftmost (richest) percent of people, we place a dot at the maximum height (call it 100) of the vertical or Wealth "W" scale. Then we record the wealth of each following percent of people as a dot at their percent of the wealth of the richest one percent. In the USA the WOP curve is not a curve at all. It looks like an "L". I suggest that government should tax wealth (not income) in such a way as to (over time [say 30yrs]) make our wop look like a quarter circle ( a circle of radius 100 tangent to the W and P axes at 100). This still allows the richest one percent to have a wealth of 7.5 times the wealth of the median family. Business would no longer pay any tax. The great majority of college graduates have never heard of the distribution of Wealth, much less the WOP curve. Why not have the WOP curve introduced to all students as an exercise in thier first algebra class?
Please check out the "L" Curve website. It's almost the same as the WOP. Be sure to zoom both in and all the way out.



The Gini coefficient is a measure of the economic dis-equity in a nation. Ginis may be applied to either income or wealth. It is a decimal from zero to one. A Gini of 0 indicates total equity, or the pure communist wop. A Gini of 1 indicates total dis-equity or the tyrant's wop. In 2010 the US wealth Gini was .801 . In Colorado Springs, I gave a short talk about WOP curves. Someone asked, "Have you developed WOP curves for other nations besides the USA?" I had to reply, "No." A bit embarrassed, I did some computer work to arrive at the equations below. Now, the more dis-equitable a nation is, the less likely it is to publish accurate wealth or income data for its top percentile. However nations are more likely to publish accurate data for their average and median wealth. As it turns out, the median/average (moa) can be used to find the exponent (pwr) needed for the equation that gives the WOP curve for that nation. Anyone who can use a spreadsheet can then develop: 1) the WOP values & curve 2) Share of nation’s wealth held by the top percent 3) the wealth Gini value. The necessary equations follow.

moa = median wealth/average wealth. These are usually available.
pwr = 1.55-2.4*moa+.9*moa^2 (The exponent applied to the People %.)
T = tail value = 100/100^pwr
W = relative Wealth of a particular percentile of the People = -T + (100+T)/(P^pwr )
Gini = .7 + 1.6*sqrt(1-.57*moa - .25*moa^2)
TpSh = Share of the nation’s wealth held by the richest percent = .4524 -.936*moa + .5*moa^2

 

 

Government Adopts Key Planned Parenthood Goal

Great news! You folks at Planned Parenthood can relax. The federal government has embraced your cause . . . or . . . almost. Your end has been to reverse this excessive, cancer-like growth of the human population. Now our government has come onboard for reasons of its own. They see that they can free up trillions of dollars (for the next few wars in central Asia) if our elderly and/or incapacitated citizens should somehow catch a disease or infection (any of several specially tailored ones) and die. It's the old "No Fat!, No Deadwood!" routine, applied on a national scale. With the mass murder our troops (and their space based weapons) will inflict upon the central Asians . . . world population should start declining within two years! Congratulations!

 

MEAT BEES AND LIBERAL WHINING


I'm sick of liberal whining over our use of torture in Iraq. Of course the white house okd it. It was at the request of the white house that Ashcroft's Office of Legal Council prepared the memorandum on the use of torture in interrogation. That rational for the use of selective torture ("necessity, and self-defense . . . would eliminate any criminal liability") was sent to white house council, Alberto Gonzales in August of 2002. A much longer legal opinion was submitted by the pentagon to the white house in March 2003. The pentagon report detailed how the administration could evade the United Nation's 1994 Convention on Torture, and Congress's 1992 law forbidding our use of torture anywhere. Yes. We torture! So what's new? For generations the CIA and all of our puppet rulers have tortured. Ever hear of the Somozas? Bautista? Pinochet? the Sha of Iran? Noriega? Marcos? Suharto? The list goes on and on. Do you sometimes watch bees slowly drowning in your bee bottle? Liberals no doubt see this as torture too. But what liberals fail to see is that mass starvation and/or murder is a central componant of that "Nature" our environmentalists so adore. A single spider will produce a thousand eggs. If she is lucky, she may catch one fly. The mother eats most of that. So what do the little spiders eat? Each other. After a few days only one, the most aggressive and voracious of the hatchlings, survives. Throughout biology the storey is the same. Thousands of seeds or eggs are produced. But only a few of the luckiest, and/or most agressive survive. Our nation is merely following its animal instinct. It is taking sustenence (in Iraq, oil) from any source where it can profitably be gained. Will this course make us seem vicous? Yes, of course, when it is exposed. So our liberals are well advised not to point to the holes in the spider's benevolent, democratic mask. Not all torture chambers are abroad.

WEAK ON WICKED


Richard Dawkins (well known Oxford professor) makes a provokative statement. He says that those who claim to reject evolution are either: 1)ignorant 2)stupid 3)insane or 4)wicked. Dawkins handles convincingly the first three options. However, I feel his essay is weak on "wicked".
Let me flesh out the "wicked" option. Thomas Malthus' writings on population and economics were the spark for both Wallace and Darwin's conceptions of the key ideas of evolution. Malthus said that any biologic population expands at an increasing rate until it runs into some insurmountable barrier (food and water shortage being the most common). When a population has grown to its envoirnment's carrying capacity it will (roughly) remain there.
If each and every org consumed a subsistence diet, then all orgs would have (barely) enough, and could reproduce. But that reproduction would dramaticly increase the population. With too many orgs and too little food there would be large scale starvation. After the starved die, those who remain could again eat, leading to the next wave of excessive births. Thus a population graph of equal consumers would vary around the subsistence population like a set of saw teeth, or a sine wave.
But all orgs of a population do not consume equal amounts. The larger and more aggressive consume a disproportionatly large amount. This leaves the weaker, less aggressive orgs with too little to live on . . . and so they starve (or commit suicide). By this means of unequal consumption a population can remain steady at the resourse saturation level. As Wallace and Darwin noted, it is precisly this competition for dominance (which females are keenly sensitive to) that drives natural selection. While most animals dominate thru physical means, a small man can dominate vast numbers of others by vigorous use of an exceptional intelligence. One common method is to tell the marks what they badly want to hear. For example: "You don't have to die! You can live forever! Just pay me and do as I say." or, "Sure the King is evil. But you don't have to risk your life to overthrow him. God will punish him when he dies!"
Thus those people who Mr. Dawkins classifies as wicked (those who falsly claim to reject Darwinism) may be the most thourough going Darwinists of us all. They use the gullibility and ignorance of their fellows to gain dominance over them. By using gile they (and perhaps many of their offspring) enjoy a high standard of living while most men live at subsistence (and many quietly starve, or commit suicide). P.S. The majority of violent deaths in the U.S. are suicides.

REVOLT AGAINST THE RICH?


Our local newspaper, "the Gazette" ran a 9/24/10 editorial, "We Don't Need a War on the Rich". I feel it missed a few points: 1) The Bush tax cuts have left the rich paying less than 60 percent of the average tax rate for the top bracket (averaged over all years since the income tax began). Then of course congress revoked the Estate tax. 2) Of the 17 most developed nations (the members of the Organization for Economic Development [OECD] ) the USA has the highest concentration of wealth in the fewest hands. 3) Of the OECD nations, the USA has the highest percent of its population living in poverty. 4) Economists have known for many decades that a jump in the concentration of wealth (Dispersion) precedes a serious downturn in a nation's economy. 5) While US workers are among the most productive in the world, they get less than 60% of the holiday and vacation time that the average OECD worker gets. 6) Taxation based on income was invented by the rich because it costs them far less than a fair tax system would. Government has always been essentially an insurance policy for the rich. Their taxes (premiums) purchase safety for their possessions from: a) Internal threats (police), and b) External threats (the military). If you owned an insurance company you would base the fee you charge on the value of a customer's possessions you insure. Your customer may have accumulated his possessions over a long time. He may have inherited much of it. Suppose a rich customer (who has inherited a great deal) tells you that he wants you to insure all of his wealth from internal and external violence for a fee based not on his wealth, but on the small retirement income he is now receiving? You would laugh in his face. Obviously his insurance premiums (taxes) must be based on the value of all those things being insured. The only reason that our tax system is based on income (rather than net worth) is that the masses remain both uninformed and unquestioning. The view of the rich is, "If the masses are too dim or timid to revolt . . . we'll just diddle them until they do!"

Machiavellian Honesty Now Despised


Power has been supreme for a very long time. In the fifth century B.C. the city state of Athens was fighting the Peloponnesian War. Its naval forces came to the neutral city of Melos and demanded its surrender. The historian Thucydides recounts the ensuing brief debate between the Athenian Commander and the Chief of the Melosians:
We both alike know that in the discussion of human affairs the question of justice only enters where there is equal power to enforce it. Otherwise the powerful exact what they can, and the weak grant what they must.
First the League of Nations, and now the United Nations are failed because they lack the power to enforce international laws upon powerful imperial nations. Can the internet and informed citizens of the world make a difference? The answer is "probably not" since the most powerful, imperial nations will no doubt soon control the internet.
{The above was abbreviated and modified from a much longer article,"The UN and the Hypocrisy of Power" by Lawrence Davidson for ConsortiumNews.com (Nov.13, 2010). Dr. Davidson is a professor of history at West Chester University in Pennsylvania.}

The Single Tax on Location Rent

(modified from Wikipedia)

 

Say you own a parcel of land.  You have built a home, a barn and you've grown a good crop on it.  Now it all burns to the ground. You are devestated. But you can still rent out your land for its "locational value" (otherwise known as "land rent").  And the closer your land is to a city . . . the higher the location rent you can get.  In France in the mid 1700s, a group of mathematicians (the Physiocrats) decided that taxing location rent would be the best way to support government.  This because that rent is in no way dependent on the land's owner.  The only thing that causes location rent to exist, or to increase . . . is that people choose to live near that land. The Physiocrats reasoned that, since it is society that gives rise to locational rent, then society has a perfect right to retrieve that value as tax.
Henry George[economist 1839-1897] is best known for his argument that the "Locational rent" on all land should be the prime source of revenue for government rather than it going into private hands. The clearest statement of this view is found in his book,"Progress and Poverty". Although this could be done by nationalizing land and then leasing it out George preferred taxing unimproved land value (location rent). He felt this would be less disruptive and controversial in a land where titles have already been granted to individuals. With this "single tax" the state could avoid having to tax any other types of wealth or transaction. Introducing a large location value tax causes the value of land titles to fall correspondingly. However, George was uncompromising about the idea of compensation for landowners. He saw the issue as a parallel to the earlier debate about compensating former slave owners.
Modern economists like the 1976 Nobel Memorial Prize winner Milton Friedman agree that Henry George's location tax is potentially beneficial because unlike other taxes, location taxes impose no excess burden on the economy, and thus stimulate more rapid economic growth. Modern-day environmentalists have resonated with the idea of the earth as the common property of humanity – and some have endorsed the idea of ecological tax reform, including substantial taxes or fees on pollution as a replacement for "command and control" regulation.

See HenryGeorge.org

THOUGH ATTACKED, WE MUST REMAIN THE BULLY


Many ask why we were attacked on 9/11. I suggest that it was because we have played the bully on the world stage for more than a century. Generally our aggression has been centered on Latin America. But our massive support for Israel's brutality against the Palestinians during the last score of years , as well as our crushing of Iraq, has reasonably angered the Moslem world. Many writers ask when America will change its foreign policy from the pursuit of world empire to the pursuit of an equitable, peaceful world? I answer that America will not, and should not abandon its quest to rule the planet.
American foreign policy is a history of massive, long term support for brutal, corrupt, right wing tyrants who will toe our line (the Samozas, Chiang Kai-shek, Pinochet, the Shah of Iran, Suharto, etc, etc). However ugly this makes us, our foreign policy should not change. Big fish east little fish. Ethics and morality play no role. History only records the actions of the top players, the big fish. No one remembers their prey. Wealth is one form of power (the ability to have others do your bidding). And power is like wealth in that once you've had it for awhile . . . no one questions where it came from. Liberals recoil from the quest for dominance. But liberal thought itself is contradictory. The bind is this: Liberals accept the Golden Rule (do unto others as you would have others do unto you). However, they also tend to accept evolution rather than creationism. The central tenant of evolution is "Survive!" When resources grow short the two principles come into conflict . . . and the rule of survival walks all over the golden rule. Lilly Tomlin had it right, "The problem with the rat race is . . . Even if you win, you're still a rat." In history we see the celebration of brutality.
P.S. I'm not really a right winger. I'm a liberal progressive. But with Obama filling his cabinet with hawks and neo liberal economists . . .thought it would be good for progressives to look at their side of the argument. Jan. 2009

FAT CAT FOR GATT


This article is for millionaires only. So, if you're not a millionaire please go eat a cookie or something. Ok, now that we're alone, we have to talk about GATT (the General Agreement on Trade and Tarriffs). Let me briefly explain how GATT will triple your fortune. GATT drops the tariffs protecting American workers. So you sell your shoe factory in America and use the money to build a modern one in China. The Chinese work for a dollar a day. You ship those cheap shoes back to America. You sell them at our prices and pocket the difference! Thus we use China to pump the wealth out of American worker's pockets . . . and into our own! But GATT offers more! Every single dollar of your increased fortune will buy twice as much as it does today. That's because the cost of a house or car is really the cost of all the labor that went in to building it. As factories leave America, unemployment will soar . . . and wages will plummet! Thus your fortune's puchasing power will double (just like during the great depression). The Republicans and most of the Democrats are already on board. But a growing number of smaller businessmen, and even some workers are getting wise. So write your free trade supporting congressman a fat check today!

THE MALTHUSIAN SPIKE


Two hundred years ago Thomas Malthus and his father had an argument. The father said that science would lead man to a utopian existence. Thomas disagreed. He said that if science is able to cure most disease, then people will multiply like rabbits. That is their numbers will increase at an increasing rate. Eventually the available farmland will be unable to support them. Massive starvation will result.
His father countered that since men can see that unrestricted reproduction must lead to massive starvation, therefore they will find some way to restrict their reproduction.
"Wrong again" said Thomas. The rich are overjoyed to see the rank of the poor swell. As unemployment soars . . . wages plummet! And prices follow wages downward! Also there is much greater demand for new houses and new factories. These all require lots of capital . . . and the rich have it! So during periods of rapid population growth, the rich can charge high interest rates. They quickly double their fortunes. Thus the rich have a strong financial incentive not to tell the masses that free reproduction must soon cause them to starve. Today we are nearing the tip of the population spike. It is a golden spike for the rich . . . plunged deep into the back of the poor. - written 1983