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(Whatever - Scalzi)   John Scalzi just invalidated all of your arguments about your taxes being too high   (whatever.scalzi.com) divider line 538
    More: Hero, Air Force Base, Mr. Johnson, Fresno Bee, Glendora  
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42296 clicks; posted to Main » on 23 Jul 2012 at 4:56 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-07-23 09:52:26 PM

cefm: The source article was more of an ode of thanks to all the people he owes and how he views his obligations to society and helping others through that lens. So subby is making a bit (not much, but a bit) of a leap to summarizing it as a pro-taxes article when it is so much more.

But that said - AGREED. The people who think they got where they are all by themselves are full of BS, nobody does.

And understanding that your own success is extremely dependent on the existence and assistance (direct or indirect) of others is a necessary ingredient to not being a cheap bastard about taxes or being a miserable human being.

(lived in many countries with higher taxes, had no problem paying)


As soon as people realize that there are people who create and people who pitch in the better... Or I guess we should all just pitch in, make the same net wage after taxes, and shut the fark up.
 
2012-07-23 09:53:26 PM

roxtar10870: All you have to do is ask yourself what the consequences of not paying are in order to see that the money is stolen from each and every one of us. I guess you could split hairs and point out the differences between theft and extorsion but the fact that both involve coersion should suffice.



Try this instead

Go to a restaurant and order their nicest meal

Enjoy it and when the bill comes, walk up and leave

Will they come after you demanding you pay? You should just reply that it's your right as a citizen to use any services you want and not have to pay for it, because paying a bill is THEFT
 
2012-07-23 09:54:57 PM

tjfly: When he invalidates my argument about spending being too high lket me know. In the mean time, am I going to vote for the guy that just raised my taxes and has accumulated a bigger deficit in 3.5 yrs than Bush did in 8? No.



Obama has lowered your taxes

Bush is responsible for the deficit
 
2012-07-23 09:55:17 PM

Nutsac_Jim: pxlboy: SlothB77: Scalzi is oblivious to the fact the private sector can do all of the things the public sector can do - and more efficiently. Instead of paying high taxes now that will be redistributed by government, he could donate his money through private charities to achieve the same ends. And probably more efficiently.

Not everything needs to be done for a profit motive.

Hippies and James T Kirk don't need money. The rest do.


Seriously?

I call bullshut.

As in shut-yer-farking-mouth, asshole, you lie with the charity assholishnessness, seriously.

Grow-the-fark-a-brain!

Please!

Thank you.
 
2012-07-23 09:55:32 PM
John Scalzi says:
July 23, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Aaaand a link to the piece just went live on Fark. Wheee!
(I've been a TotalFark member for years, BTW)


:o
 
2012-07-23 09:56:29 PM

intelligent comment below: Mr. Right: Charity for some at the expense of others has accomplished nothing but a federal debt equal to our GDP.


Defense spending over 1 trillion a year has nothing on food stamp spending amiright?


For that trillion a year, we have the best defense and military in the world. The multiples of trillions we have spent on poverty programs has not notably reduced poverty. As I have pointed out, the poverty rate dips most significantly when the private sector economy is robust, not when there are multiple layers of government programs in place. Nothing pulls people out of poverty faster than a job. Nothing provides more jobs than the private sector, when it can profitably employ people.
 
2012-07-23 09:58:01 PM

Carlo Spicy-Wiener: I am a white, cis-gendered, heterosexual, gainfully employed, male citizen of the United States.
I do not know what it's like to be oppressed.
I do not know what it's like to be persecuted.
I do not know what it's like to be in fear for my life.
I do not know what it's like to have to fight for my rights.
I do not know what it's like to struggle for recognition.
I do not know what it's like to go without food or shelter.

THAT is what "white privelage" means.


I don't think its as privileged as you think it is
 
2012-07-23 09:58:21 PM
rosariomariocapalbo.files.wordpress.com

Some of us are more equal than others.
 
2012-07-23 10:02:01 PM
Somebody actually read all of that?

I think I made it a few paragraphs in before I began to long for a slideshow.
 
2012-07-23 10:04:01 PM
So many errors, so little time...
 
2012-07-23 10:06:22 PM

CreamyG31337: John Scalzi says:
July 23, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Aaaand a link to the piece just went live on Fark. Wheee!
(I've been a TotalFark member for years, BTW)


:o


SkinnyHead!!!!!
 
2012-07-23 10:08:18 PM

intelligent comment below: tjfly: When he invalidates my argument about spending being too high lket me know. In the mean time, am I going to vote for the guy that just raised my taxes and has accumulated a bigger deficit in 3.5 yrs than Bush did in 8? No.


Obama has lowered your taxes

Bush is responsible for the deficit


B-b-b-but Bush. Because Bush's final words to the freshmen president as he walked out the door were, "Son. You've got to promise me one thing. Carry on my legacy, drive the economy deep into the ground as far as you can. But don't just do this for me... do this for America!"
 
2012-07-23 10:08:22 PM

Mr. Right: I have heard estimates north of $50 trillion just for SS and Medicare. Of course, if everyone over the age of 62 were to drop dead tomorrow, we could save a lot of money and solve a lot of problems


And of course, if you herded half the population of earth into a ditch and shot them, the other half would be eating high off the hog. Cold math never works because cold math isn't the point. It's a measuring stick. Not the actual work. As far as something as relatively ( in a historical reference ) simple as health care is racking up Never Never Land style numbers means that health care isn't about health care anymore. It's about money. And as soon as something is primarily about money, you can flip the skirt up on what it is said to be about and kiss it's pink, rosy ass goodbye. We're doing it wrong. And we have been for a long time.
 
2012-07-23 10:11:12 PM

Mr. Right: For that trillion a year, we have the best defense and military in the world. The multiples of trillions we have spent on poverty programs has not notably reduced poverty. As I have pointed out, the poverty rate dips most significantly when the private sector economy is robust, not when there are multiple layers of government programs in place. Nothing pulls people out of poverty faster than a job. Nothing provides more jobs than the private sector, when it can profitably employ people.



What exactly do you see by having the "best defense and military in the world?"

Have many countries attacked America in the past 50 years? Does Canada and Mexico attack on a daily basis?

Food stamps and other programs have better returns on investment than defense spending will ever have.

As you pointed out? You can point anything out, that doesn't mean it's right.

Having a job gets you out of poverty, well no shiat? Guess what? America has had a lack of jobs for over a decade.

The private sector ironically is seeing the highest profits yet continues to cut jobs

The largest employer in America is the GOVERNMENT

wrap your ignorant head around that
 
2012-07-23 10:11:23 PM

gerrymander: I disagree. When a person speaks for himself (or as part of a self-inclusive group, such as a family Thanksgiving per your example, or a church congregation) about being aware of privileges, it can be humbling without being diminishing.

When a person speaks to others about their need to be aware of privilege, without identifying as part of that group, it is intended as a brickbat -- always and every time, in my experience. (Now, as my experience is far from total, I'm willing to grant I may be overlooking something, which is why I'm open to a counter-example. That we've gotten this far without one is indicative.)



"When a person speaks for himself (or as part of a self-inclusive group,"

So apparently you think John Scalzi was part of the group he was speaking of. Really.

" I'm willing to grant I may be overlooking something, which is why I'm open to a counter-example. That we've gotten this far without one is indicative."



i.imgur.com
 
2012-07-23 10:13:27 PM

clowncar on fire: B-b-b-but Bush. Because Bush's final words to the freshmen president as he walked out the door were, "Son. You've got to promise me one thing. Carry on my legacy, drive the economy deep into the ground as far as you can. But don't just do this for me... do this for America!"



Huh? The budget passed under Bush that carried over into the middle of 2009 and the cost of the 2 wars he started is responsible for the debt

Here is a graph since you're so retarded

cdn.theatlantic.com
 
2012-07-23 10:23:40 PM

lewismarktwo: namatad: Carlo Spicy-Wiener: I am a white, cis-gendered, heterosexual, gainfully employed, male citizen of the United States.
I do not know what it's like to be oppressed.
I do not know what it's like to be persecuted.
I do not know what it's like to be in fear for my life.
I do not know what it's like to have to fight for my rights.
I do not know what it's like to struggle for recognition.
I do not know what it's like to go without food or shelter.

THAT is what "white privelage" means.

thank you!

Lol yes, white males feel no pain.


Of course they don't. That's why suicide rates of white men are on par with those of Native Americans, and at least twice that of any other group.

www.cdc.gov

Link
 
2012-07-23 10:25:10 PM

Ambitwistor: Oops, with better quoting:

kasmel: The amount unaccounted for falls into the range of statistical error. 4-7%.

The study is not capable of accounting for things like discrimination leading to part-time vs. full-time jobs. In fact, it attributes 0% of the difference in part- vs. full-time job holding to discrimination, by assumption. Read the methodology. After making such assumptions, it arrives at the 4-7% figure, but these assumptions themselves are what are in question.

I don't know if data exists that can answer this question. Therefore, I don't think we can conclude that discrimination is negligible. Regardless, I do agree with you that we should be looking at known underlying social factors that influence career choices (e.g., decoupling health care from employment).


Whether significant discrimination exists or not, at this point, doesn't actually mean anything. We can't prove it except in specific cases, which is why the Lily Ledbetter act is fine. I dont believe it will have any impact on anything, let alone the statistics, but there's nothing wrong with having regulation to protect laborers.

I do not, personally, believe that there is endemic sex discrimination. But that's not a valuable data point. The fact that it's what is focussed on is what bothers me.

It's the sense of persecution that clouds the conversation more than anything. If we jump to the conclusion that people are being victimized in some way, rather than taking the time to address the things we know, and incrementally taking steps to improve, we'll never get past the argument of who's to blame.
 
2012-07-23 10:25:18 PM
Wow, my parents could barely in society, and yet somehow I reached the age of majority by sponging off of anyone and everyone. Great article if you are looking for ways to avoid personal responsibility.

I was raised a poor black child, and that is why I try so hard to bring others out of poverty, and I don't get reimbursed by anyone.

Paying taxes is a loser's bet, you'll never see the upside unless you allow the government to have more control of your life.
 
2012-07-23 10:27:53 PM

Mr. Right: imgod2u: The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence[note 1] and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.

Thank you for proving my point. Congress does have the right to lay taxes and it is the duty of every productive citizen to pay those taxes. But I don't think you know what general Welfare means. It means that the federal expenditure must benefit all equally.


I think that's up for interpretation. Any cursory at the very history of taxation as well as the philosophical debates that led up to the Constitution would show it wasn't about benefiting everyone equally; it was about providing for the public good. That doesn't mean rich and poor get equal benefits but rather, that the public works provide an overall better society than otherwise would happen without it.

Welfare never referred to the public dole or charity until FDR. So, a road project for which taxes are laid benefits everyone equally. A common defense benefits everyone equally.

Your definition of "equally" seems to be quite tailored then. Even with your examples, there are those who benefit more than others. People who live near public roadways benefit far more than people who do not; though yes they all benefit from it. People with little property and land to lose, not to mention whose national loyalties are somewhat loose, benefit little from common defense; they'd live just fine under any ruling nation. So what exactly is your criteria for "benefiting equally"?

A welfare program that is restricted to mothers not married to the father of their children benefits only a small segment of society at the expense of everyone who does take responsibility for their children. A farm program that pays certain farmers to not raise corn benefits a very small segment of society at the expense of everyone who wasn't going to raise corn in the first place. Your quote also calls for taxes to be laid equally across all the states. When some states get exemptions from the Affordable Care Act but others do not, is that equal? Especially given that SCOTUS has called ACA a tax?

Again, your definition of "uniform" seems to be quite tailored. For instance, are you suggesting that tax rates for everyone everywhere is flat? If not, the very structure of the progressive income tax would seem to violate your interpretation of "uniform". Again, a cursory glance at the debates that led up to the taxation clause would show that that wasn't the intention. The intention was for a uniform tax code that wasn't biased. So the government can't punish Texas for being Texas by saying "everyone from Texas automatically pays 5% more in federal income tax".

There is nothing wrong with taxes, provided they really are used for the GENERAL welfare. Public charity was never the intent of the framers.

I agree with your later statement. But then again, the framers also never intended for black people or women to vote. Sometimes, the laws and the Constitution itself changes with the times. So, the question is, why do you suppose that these "charity" programs aren't beneficial to the general public? I would argue they are. It seems rather naive to ignore both the tangible and intangible benefits of a social safety net. One needs only look at countries who lack in such and compare things like crime rate, productivity and more importantly, social mobility.

Yes, that "welfare queen" may do nothing for society as you think. But that's:
1. One less desperate person on the streets. When it's the difference between starvation and violence/theft, most people, even good people, will choose the later.
2. One more roll in the human gene pool lottery. Those "welfare kids" of hers may statistically end up being welfare recipients as well -- and I'm definitely an advocate of welfare reform to change that statistic -- but it only takes one to be the next Einstein to radically change the world.

And before you go on about how private charity can take care of that. Obviously private charity didn't do a good enough job, elsewise people would never have felt the need to enact public programs for it to begin with.

Private charity was not only the intent, but is viewed as a mandate. The parable from Matthew (in the Bible) about feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, etc., is a mandate for charity but the sense of the mandate is always singular, not plural. You (plural) are not mandated to be charitable, YOU (singular) are. And taking from some only to give to a few others is decidedly not the intent of the framers of the Constitution.

Are you advocating that private charity be mandated through law? Because otherwise, it doesn't do a fat lot of good.
 
2012-07-23 10:33:03 PM

intelligent comment below: clowncar on fire: B-b-b-but Bush. Because Bush's final words to the freshmen president as he walked out the door were, "Son. You've got to promise me one thing. Carry on my legacy, drive the economy deep into the ground as far as you can. But don't just do this for me... do this for America!"


Huh? The budget passed under Bush that carried over into the middle of 2009 and the cost of the 2 wars he started is responsible for the debt

Here is a graph since you're so retarded

[cdn.theatlantic.com image 559x622]


Wow. My mediocre attempts at sarcasm resulted in a diarrhetic graph thingie.

You do realize that you are probably the last of the Fark denizens who don't have me on ignore, don't you?
 
2012-07-23 10:35:41 PM
Somebody agrees with liberals and tells them what they want to hear, making them feel validated you mean?

/reads article

Yep.
 
2012-07-23 10:39:14 PM

gerrymander: YoungLochinvar: Did you READ that second study? You know, that showed how WHITE MEN get far more responses than any other men?

Both studies show the same thing, when reduced along gender lines from the standpoint of privilege: women have it in extraordinary amounts, based upon the ratio of interest to responses. Which means Scalzi's "easy mode" metaphor doesn't apply for mate selection. May I trust that you see exactly how huge a gaping hole that puts into the metaphor?


Huge? I'd call it minor, especially since that's based entirely on the willingness of your fellow men to pursue women with reckless abandon.

But hey, you're bitter because you can't talk to girls or something, therefore sexism doesn't exist. Seriously - you live in a very sad reality. I'm very glad I'm me and not you right now...

/if I was less buzzed I'd respond in more detail but you wouldn't believe me anyway so why bother?
//yay vacation!
 
2012-07-23 10:40:24 PM

randomjsa: Somebody agrees with liberals and tells them what they want to hear, making them feel validated you mean?

/reads article

Yep.


Fark: I feel validated.
 
2012-07-23 10:42:07 PM

intelligent comment below: Mr. Right: For that trillion a year, we have the best defense and military in the world. The multiples of trillions we have spent on poverty programs has not notably reduced poverty. As I have pointed out, the poverty rate dips most significantly when the private sector economy is robust, not when there are multiple layers of government programs in place. Nothing pulls people out of poverty faster than a job. Nothing provides more jobs than the private sector, when it can profitably employ people.


What exactly do you see by having the "best defense and military in the world?"

Fewer Soviet, Wermacht, or British patrolling our streets. But we have to put up with douchebags that can't figure that one out.

Have many countries attacked America in the past 50 years? Does Canada and Mexico attack on a daily basis?

They haven't attacked us since the last time, have they? But they did attack us several times in our history, when we didn't have a large military.

Food stamps and other programs have better returns on investment than defense spending will ever have.

Because, unlike the military with it's technology spin-offs, Social Services spin-offs are; what the hell has Food Stamps done? Welfare?

As you pointed out? You can point anything out, that doesn't mean it's right.

Having a job gets you out of poverty, well no shiat? Guess what? America has had a lack of jobs for over a decade.

The private sector ironically is seeing the highest profits yet continues to cut jobs

The largest employer in America is the GOVERNMENT

wrap your ignorant head around that


Well, at least you know your head is so far in, you're seeing daylight
 
2012-07-23 10:42:17 PM
If you "stopped reading" after only a few lines of the article, you're not doing this guy justice. John Scalzi is a fantastic author and deserves praise. After getting through that blog post, I have even more respect for the man. Pay it forward, and cheers to Mr. Scalzi.
 
2012-07-23 10:42:44 PM

Pincy: Old Smokie: I got here on my own. Fark you

Except of course for the personal assistance who has to change your diapers. But ya, otherwise, on your own big guy.


Wow, I have a personal assistance? Someone should have let me know.
 
2012-07-23 10:43:46 PM

gerrymander: vpb: gerrymander: No dice, subby. Ever since Scalzi came out as a condescending, racist bigot, I have no interest in him, his opinions, or his fiction.

Really? What was that about?

He did a huge post a month or two ago about how being a straight, white guy is playing a videogame on "easy mode". (No. I'm not going to link it, for the same reason I don't link to Stormfront. It's on his website if you care that much.) Apparently, work is easier, cancer kills less, and leggy supermodels are always knocking down the door for anyone holding the Straight, White Male ID Card -- and if you can't make it, what a pathetic loser you must be!

It's one thing to view society through the lens of who has or doesn't have "privilege". It's not a viewpoint I agree with or find constructive, but moral codes have to start somewhere. It's another thing entirely to use that lens as an excuse to denigrate an entire segment of society based on their skin color, gender and sexual preference. And doing that to a sizable fraction of your own core audience in an appeal to that same fraction is beyond stupid.

So, yeah. I'm done, and F7U12, Scalzi. Can't shake the devil's hand and say you're only kidding.


Good god, man. Just look at how stupid you are.
 
2012-07-23 10:51:30 PM

intelligent comment below: tjfly: When he invalidates my argument about spending being too high lket me know. In the mean time, am I going to vote for the guy that just raised my taxes and has accumulated a bigger deficit in 3.5 yrs than Bush did in 8? No.


Obama has lowered your taxes

Bush is responsible for the deficit


Damn that nefarious Bush and his time machine!

img404.imageshack.us

/Graph from Wikipedia, may be suspect, but others on GIS show the same pattern.
//Fraction of GDP more informative than the straight numbers.
///...or did Bush pull a Sam Beckett and leapt into Reagan's body?
 
2012-07-23 10:51:33 PM
Cyclometh: Good god, man. Just look at how stupid you are.
 
2012-07-23 10:52:16 PM
I dont understand why people blame Obama for the deficit and economy.

The President proposes budgets, that is all he can do constitutionally.
Congress disposes , they can spend and tax, that is all they can do. They have the most power of all 3 branches but have been rather reluctant to use their power.
 
2012-07-23 10:54:34 PM
Cyclometh: Good god, man. Just look at how stupid you are.



Let's try that again..

i113.photobucket.com
 
2012-07-23 11:00:55 PM
The current construct of "racial privilege" was created by people who have an interest in perpetuating racism and racial divides rather than in eliminating those things. It is an idea that is intellectually (1) dishonest, (2) lazy, and, (3) immature. It's all about the quick scapegoating of innocents for crimes committed and washing one's hands of the matter in order to claim the moral high ground in discussions and arguments, rather than blaming the specific crimes on those who commit them and demanding redress.

First: Statistics ≠ probability. They are two separate things. Just because statistical measurements indicate that N% of a Group A has experienced X does NOT mean that EACH and EVERY individual member of Group A has (or had) a N% chance of experiencing X. Saying each and every member of a certain group, simply by virtue of his or her belonging to that group, has some kind of characteristic, tendency, advantage/disadvantage, or chance of doing/experiencing something just because of mass statistical measurements is fallacious. Applying this illogic to races of people is actually racist, whether intentional or not.

Second: A person should receive neither credit nor blame for the actions or circumstances of his or her ancestors. Neither should they ever receive credit or blame for the actions or circumstances of people who happen to be the same race/religion/class as the person. A person should only be judged by his or her own actions and own character.

Third: Mistreatment of individuals does not = "unfair privilege" for innocent individuals who are not mistreated. If a person is unfairly treated or is unfairly denied something because of his or her race, it's not unjust for other people to be treated fairly. Call it what it is-an injustice against the person who was unfairly treated by someone who is being racist. Being resentful of people who aren't unfairly treated and saying they are receiving an unfair "privilege" implies that they don't deserve to be treated fairly. It's like a 5-year-old kid in preschool who didn't get a toy to play with that everyone else was given, whining and getting pissy at the other kids who did nothing wrong, rather than confronting the person who denied him or her that toy and asking why he or she is being treated unfairly. A more extreme example-It would be ridiculous to claim that it is an "unfair privilege" for women who haven't been raped to not be raped. When a woman is raped, the crime committed is the rape, and the rapist is the one who should be faulted and punished. The injustice is not that other women didn't get raped. Not being raped isn't a "privilege."

Railing against the "unfair privilege" enjoyed by one group who are perceived to not have suffered injustices, rather than attacking the actual acts of injustice against members of the other group and calling them out for what they are, is dishonest and lazy, and only serves to prolong the problems rather than help eliminate them. If you are someone of Race A who has been treated poorly, abused, and/or unfairly denied something(s) because of your race (or someone of Race B with a guilty conscience, who enjoys taking offense by proxy), the right thing to do is to confront those specific injustices, call them out for what they are, and demand redress (and perhaps punishment for the offender), NOT to sit on your butt and whine about how everyone in Race B has some kind of unfair privilege because they are not suffering what you did. The only thing that kind of complaining does is mark the complainer as someone who desires to claim and indefinitely hold onto the (perceived) moral high-ground status as a "victimized class," much like people who claim to be "offended" by things in order to try and make themselves feel less weak/more powerful by restricting the freedom of others who have really done nothing wrong. If you are treated improperly because of your skin color, THAT is the injustice, NOT the fact that people of another skin color weren't mistreated.
 
2012-07-23 11:04:07 PM

intelligent comment below: Diogenes The Cynic: But I guess we got to where we are from being white. That helped out a lot. Amirite?


I bet nobody discriminated against you when you were applying for jobs. I bet nobody denied you the right to move into a house because of your race. I bet the police didn't give you a hard time because of your race. I bet the public school you all went to was properly funded and gave you a quality education, try having that in inner cities with minorities.


White men are discriminated against for promotions all the time. Many companies have quotas and less qualified people get picked for promotions because of their race or gender all the time.
 
2012-07-23 11:04:41 PM

Mr. Right:
Thank you for proving my point. Congress does have the right to lay taxes and it is the duty of every productive citizen to pay those taxes. But I don't think you know what general Welfare means. It means that the federal expenditure must benefit all equally. Welfare never referred to the public dole or charity until FDR. So, a road project for which taxes are laid benefits everyone equally. A common defense benefits everyone equally. A welfare program that is restricted to mothers not married to the father of their children benefits only a small segment of society at the expense of everyone who does take responsibility for their children. A farm program that pays certain farmers to not raise corn benefits a very small segment of society at the expense of everyone who wasn't going to raise corn in the first place. Your quote also calls for taxes to be laid equally across all the states. When some states get exemptions from the Affordable Care Act but others do not, is that equal? Especially given that SCOTUS has called ACA a tax?

There is nothing wrong with taxes, provided they really are used for the GENERAL welfare. Public charity was never the intent of the framers. Private charity was not only the intent, but is viewed as a mandate. The parable from Matthew (in the Bible) about feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, etc., is a mandate for charity but the sense of the mandate is always singular, not plural. You (plural) are not mandated to be charitable, YOU (singular) are. And taking from some only to give to a few others is decidedly not the intent of the framers of the Constitution.



Yeah, well, that's just, like, your opinion, Madison.

'These three qualifications excepted, the power to raise money is plenary, and indefinite; and the objects to which it may be appropriated are no less comprehensive, than the payment of the public debts and the providing for the common defence and "general Welfare." The terms "general Welfare" were doubtless intended to signify more than was expressed or imported in those which Preceded; otherwise numerous exigencies incident to the affairs of a Nation would have been left without a provision. The phrase is as comprehensive as any that could have been used; because it was not fit that the constitutional authority of the Union, to appropriate its revenues shou'd have been restricted within narrower limits than the "General Welfare" and because this necessarily embraces a vast variety of particulars, which are susceptible neither of specification nor of definition.

It is therefore of necessity left to the discretion of the National Legislature, to pronounce, upon the objects, which concern the general Welfare, and for which under that description, an appropriation of money is requisite and proper.'
--Alexander Hamilton, 1791

Hamilton argued against your interpretation more than two centuries ago, his views largely prevailed at the time, and no Supreme Court has yet to disagree with them, yet you tell everyone who accepts that understanding of the Constitution that they don't know what "general welfare" means. That's unreasonable.

/the Democratic-Republicans will rise again!
//nope
 
2012-07-23 11:06:57 PM

Diogenes Teufelsdrockh: intelligent comment below: tjfly: When he invalidates my argument about spending being too high lket me know. In the mean time, am I going to vote for the guy that just raised my taxes and has accumulated a bigger deficit in 3.5 yrs than Bush did in 8? No.


Obama has lowered your taxes

Bush is responsible for the deficit

Damn that nefarious Bush and his time machine!

[img404.imageshack.us image 514x312]

/Graph from Wikipedia, may be suspect, but others on GIS show the same pattern.
//Fraction of GDP more informative than the straight numbers.
///...or did Bush pull a Sam Beckett and leapt into Reagan's body?


Guess who approved that 2009 budget?

Try this chart:
i.imgur.com

Record decrease in revenues coupled with massive increase in outlays? HURR DURR
 
2012-07-23 11:11:21 PM
img812.imageshack.us

/O RLY?
 
2012-07-23 11:17:52 PM

Diogenes Teufelsdrockh: intelligent comment below: tjfly: When he invalidates my argument about spending being too high lket me know. In the mean time, am I going to vote for the guy that just raised my taxes and has accumulated a bigger deficit in 3.5 yrs than Bush did in 8? No.


Obama has lowered your taxes

Bush is responsible for the deficit

Damn that nefarious Bush and his time machine!

[img404.imageshack.us image 514x312]

/Graph from Wikipedia, may be suspect, but others on GIS show the same pattern.
//Fraction of GDP more informative than the straight numbers.
///...or did Bush pull a Sam Beckett and leapt into Reagan's body?


Yeah, that's the problem with bringing the GDP down to depressing lows.
In case you didn't know what the argument was about in the first place.
 
2012-07-23 11:18:29 PM

SlothB77: Scalzi is oblivious to the fact the private sector can do all of the things the public sector can do - and more efficiently. Instead of paying high taxes now that will be redistributed by government, he could donate his money through private charities to achieve the same ends. And probably more efficiently.


Does corporate grade shoe polish taste better than the regular stuff? Cause you apologist boot licker making senseless points based on completely unsupported assumptions. I.e., you are a mindless hack stooge for your corporate masters.

First, please please show me how the private sector is magically hyper efficient at curing all the worlds ills, cause last I checked, the bottom line in supporting the most impoverished people in the US wasn't particularly lucrative; and my GED in Economics tells me that making money is kinda the point of being in business in the US. (Also, aren't there all those anecdotal stories of like 90% of charity donations going to 'overhead' and not the cause?)

Also, a social safety net based entirely on charity is so goddamn motherfarking insane as to be pants on head - counting to potato - mormon underwear level of insane.

You see, doofus, the gov't has a little thing called civil liberties they cannot violate. They can't denie you a service based on race, creed, color, country of origin, religious beliefs, lack of religious beliefs, how you've used your freedom of speech, gender, increasingly sexual orientation; you know, all that hippie Bill of Rights, Equal Protection, Due process shiat you apparently don't understand. Oh, and there is farking recouse through administrative and civil proceedings.

I really REALLY do not want to live in a world where the social safety net is based on whims of charity of the ultra-rich and administered at the fancy of (to pick one) nutbag religious whackos that tell you you ain't gonna eat tonight if you don't grovel on your knees before their priest.
 
2012-07-23 11:20:11 PM
"Racial privilege"?

It's like having a +5 to archery because you're an Elf. Yeah, it's an advantage... if you don't bother to train up that stat. A Human who trains a lot in archery can easily make them a better archer then that Elf who relies on his 'advantage'. And an Elf that trains hard will hit the same stat cap the human does. Once the stat is maxed out, the 'advantage' disappears.

Translation: Being a StraightWhiteMale is a slight advantage... if you never work at improving yourself. Hard work by a non-StraightWhiteMale can easily make them more successful than a StraightWhiteMale who simply relies on their 'advantage'.

And I'm not even factoring in AA.
 
2012-07-23 11:23:57 PM

cynispasm: Villemus Fortis: [images.sodahead.com image 500x416]


Animals aren't going to riot and rob your ass if they get hungry.


THIS.
 
2012-07-23 11:32:56 PM
What is the tax rate at which Congress can spend $1.68 for every dollar received and not keep putting us further in debt?

/taxes are not the problem
//it's the spending
 
2012-07-23 11:34:41 PM

fredklein: "Racial privilege"?

It's like having a +5 to archery because you're an Elf. Yeah, it's an advantage... if you don't bother to train up that stat. A Human who trains a lot in archery can easily make them a better archer then that Elf who relies on his 'advantage'. And an Elf that trains hard will hit the same stat cap the human does. Once the stat is maxed out, the 'advantage' disappears.

Translation: Being a StraightWhiteMale is a slight advantage... if you never work at improving yourself. Hard work by a non-StraightWhiteMale can easily make them more successful than a StraightWhiteMale who simply relies on their 'advantage'.

And I'm not even factoring in AA.


All of that was actually addressed in the post. So what's your point? All else being equal, you're better off being a straight white male. I think we all agree that shouldn't be the case.
 
2012-07-23 11:48:44 PM
Looking for that guy from Coach saying "when I was young we were poor! We were on food stamps! Nobody helped me!"

I am disappoint.
 
2012-07-23 11:51:30 PM

YoungLochinvar: All else being equal, you're better off being a straight white male. I think we all agree that shouldn't be the case.


But all else IS NOT EQUAL. And to pretend it is is dishonest.

There have been stories posted here of white males (presumably Straight, too) who have had bad experiences because they grew up in a non-white area. Whites who grow up in minority neighborhoods have the same problems that blacks do in white neighborhoods. It's less 'Whites have an advantage' and more 'the majority has an advantage'. People are used to others people like themselves, and look with... suspicion?... on people who are different.

And, in the USA, the majority happens to be White.
 
2012-07-23 11:56:43 PM

serial_crusher: Monkeyhouse Zendo: Just admit that you want people on government assistance to live in misery with no access to any of the comforts or conveniences of modern life and have done with it.

Oh, my only goal was to point out how wrong you were for pretending that your phone only cost 99 cents, not all the rest of that.


A smartphone is cheaper than a computer. Yes, this is true even when you talk about the $399 NetBook you can pick up at the WallyWorld on black Friday. That would require that a poor have the $399 all at one time, instead of spring out the (admittedly higher) cost of a cell contract over two years.

For you, a smartphone may seem to be a luxury because it duplicates the functions of your computer. Four them, it replaces the computer and is therefore no longer a luxury.

Spend some time outside of the suburbs, will ya?
 
2012-07-23 11:58:53 PM

untaken_name: What is the tax rate at which Congress can spend $1.68 for every dollar received and not keep putting us further in debt?

/taxes are not the problem
//it's the spending


Good thing we just invented time travel because the year 2003 really needs to hear that.
 
2012-07-24 12:05:20 AM

kidgenius: QDW: SlothB77: Scalzi is oblivious to the fact the private sector can do all of the things the public sector can do - and more efficiently. Instead of paying high taxes now that will be redistributed by government, he could donate his money through private charities to achieve the same ends. And probably more efficiently.

That's dumb.Just saying something is a fact doesn't make it so. Even trivial analysis shows this is not just silly but frankly delusional.

Freeways, CDC, FAA, the criminal justice system, fire departments, even... dare I say it... the military are not things that can be privately funded. Geez....

/Forehead sore from the enormous slap I just gave it.


Ahem...you must not be aware of the private companies that provide firefighting coverage. Rural Metro would be an example...they're a pretty big deal.


I have a big problem with private emergency services. Emergency workers are given a great deal of authority. Police officers are given the most, obviously, with the authority to search, seize, detain, arrest, restrain and use deadly force. Fire fighters are given the authority to enter property and restrict access to property. In my state, the senior fire official on an emergency scene is in command, in charge of all cops, EMS workers, or any other agency on scene. In my state, if the fire department is working at a scene, ownership of the property is legally transferred to the fire department for the duration of the incident, and transferred back to the owner once the situation is stabilized. EMS providers have the authority to override a patient's decision to seek medical care if certain criteria are met, essentially taking the person into custody. All three services are given exceptions to certain laws, most notably traffic laws. Stop signs, red lights, one way streets, speed limits and opposing lanes are all negotiable under the proper circumstances.

I argue that only agents of the government should be given the type of authority described above, especially concerning custody of citizens and entrance to property. Allowing a private company that type of power is wrong. And only on-duty agents of the government, under certain conditions, should be granted exemption from certain laws. Granting those exceptions to employees of private, for-profit corporations can lead to problems.
 
2012-07-24 12:11:42 AM

intelligent comment below: Wow, your parents paid for private schools, private police and fire departments, private roads etc etc etc?


Shocker, not every township pays for this with taxes. You can have private roads and pay for it yourself if you dont want your taxes to go up. You might also be able to pay for your local fire protection just like other people sign up for trash service. If you dont buy it and your house burns down, the fire dept might just show up to make sure your house doesnt burn and catch your neighbors house on fire too.. you know, the one that paid for fire service.
it all can be private. It just depends.
 
2012-07-24 12:22:22 AM

Nutsac_Jim: intelligent comment below: Wow, your parents paid for private schools, private police and fire departments, private roads etc etc etc?

Shocker, not every township pays for this with taxes. You can have private roads and pay for it yourself if you dont want your taxes to go up. You might also be able to pay for your local fire protection just like other people sign up for trash service. If you dont buy it and your house burns down, the fire dept might just show up to make sure your house doesnt burn and catch your neighbors house on fire too.. you know, the one that paid for fire service.
it all can be private. It just depends.



Sounds like you know how to run... any big or medium city in the country. Stop living in the golden era of the wild west and join reality sometime. Ah who am I kidding, libertarians are so far detached from reality
 
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