The Problem With Taxing the Rich

Seanchaidh

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Actually if I remember right Amazon was one of the earlier big companies to jump on the $15 an hour band wagon.
Amazon did that in response to legislative proposals related to their shit pay that would have been rather punishing to them. Also, $15 isn't exactly amazing.
 
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Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.
Amazon did that in response to legislative proposals related to their shit pay that would have been rather punishing to them. Also, $15 isn't exactly amazing.
Better then 7.25 although yeah, we needed $15 an hour like 10 years ago, probably closer to needing like $20 an hour nowadays.
 
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Trunkage

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Remember when Amazon was finding a new place for a warehouse and every city whored itself out to get it.

I wonder where they ended up. And if 'lowest tax' was the determining factor
 

Gergar12

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The US, the EU, and China all have the ability to force companies to do whatever due to their giant markets. If China can say give me your IPO to a giant tech company like say Apple, we can say pay more in corporate taxes.
 
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McElroy

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Remember when Amazon was finding a new place for a warehouse and every city whored itself out to get it.

I wonder where they ended up. And if 'lowest tax' was the determining factor
You'd think logistics factor in much more. That's why the Nordic warehouse is in Sweden and not Norway or Finland.
 

Worgen

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Whatever, just wash your hands.

Trunkage

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You'd think logistics factor in much more. That's why the Nordic warehouse is in Sweden and not Norway or Finland.
Yeah logistics was the determining factor. Going to the arse end of nowhere would be economic suicide

The whole purpose of that campaign was to force New York State to give tax discounts by pretending that they were never going there. It was a negotiation tactic, paid by the MSM. Big companies use the myth that Hansel described in the OP to force states to give concessions. It is THE reason the myth exists
 

The Rogue Wolf

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The New York Times is wrong, but not for the reasons being said. The objective of high tax rates on the rich is not to score beaucoup bucks for the Treasury; it's to make investing in things like plant, product and people more profitable than stockpiling money in offshore bank accounts or using it to gamble on the stock market. Because, unlike what some political parties would have us believe, rich people aren't aching to give us all jobs if only that dang gub'mint would get out of the way- they only create jobs when doing so is their most profitable avenue.
 

TheMysteriousGX

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So, you know how politicians are arguing that we shouldn't be giving covid aid money to people who too much money because they don't need it and they'll just bank it?

That's trickle down economics in a nutshell. Lower corporate taxes won't do shit except inflate some bank accounts.
 

Hawki

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I'm not sure what arguments there are against taxing the rich. The most common I hear are:

1: Offshoring (well, then we need all countries to work together to root out tax havens)

2: The rick are entitled to their money (that's true to a point - I mean, if I found a business, then I'm entitled to take more from that business than others I employ - but we have progressive taxes for a reason. You don't need billions of dollars each year to live)

3: Billionaires are a source of philanthropy (again, also true, but the question is, who's better at raising the standard of human life - philanthropists, or governments? I think that's a question worthy of debate, but there's a saying that "charity is due to a failure of government." So even if Bill Gates for instance is a philanthropist I admire, there's still an argument to be made that his money would be better served with government)

4: Trickle down economics (okay, so having looked at the data, if we take the neoliberal era as beginning from the 1970s, I will concede that this period does mark the greatest reduction in poverty the world has seen. However, two problems. One, a lot of this poverty reduction comes from China, and whatever China is, it certainly isn't neoliberal. Second, in terms of growth, most of it is still captured by upper economic percentiles. I'm skeptical about degrowth for a number of reasons, but growth for the sake of growth isn't progress either.)

So, yeah. Tax the rich. Tax them, so we don't eat them.
 

Seanchaidh

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So even if Bill Gates for instance is a philanthropist I admire, there's still an argument to be made that his money would be better served with government
Bill Gates started his charitable foundation to help repair his public image right after the first crop of anti-trust lawsuits. When it hasn't actively been doing harm, like when it encouraged researchers to abandon a promise to produce and sell their COVID vaccine at cost and instead sell the rights to a big pharmaceutical company, it hasn't done much to help.
 
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meiam

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I'm not sure what arguments there are against taxing the rich. The most common I hear are:

1: Offshoring (well, then we need all countries to work together to root out tax havens)
That's the main argument and it's an extremely stron one for a good reason. This is essentially a prisoner dilemma on a planetary scale, any country that break with a potential international tax agreement would reap reward for themselves much higher than what they would lose, even though the loss across the entire world would be greater than the gain that country would get. There are country whose entire economy depend on being a tax heaven, if they stopped most of them have no industry to speak of, they would go from being 1st to 3rd world in a matter of months.

Plus, just look at Delaware, when people talk about tax heaven they think of some other country, but Delaware is a tax haven straight in the US. And plenty of state have preferential tax treatment for specific industry. And this isn't just a US thing, this exist in most country. So you can't even get country themselves to work out how to properly tax company, and you think it's possible for an international agreement to come into play?

Part of the reason is also that governments don't appear to be very good at managing money. After WW2 societies trusted their governments to spend money well, partly because they were seen as having done a good job in the war effort and partly because they were a lot of easy project to do (rebuilding stuff that was proven to be useful). This means they were more tolerant of high tax because it seemed like it was going to be put to good use. Nowaday it's, fairly or not, harder to trust that governments will spend money well. So company/rich people start thinking that they should keep their money to channel it toward better use and plenty of citizens agree with that.

I think it would really help if government really shaped up every aspect that has to deal with the public to be seen as far more trustworthy of money. Like, not too long ago I had to deal with a government function, I could do the process by mail but it would take over 6 weeks, compared to 5 days if I went in person! So I email them to check if the local place was open with potential covid restriction. After 3 days I got an email informing me that they'd receive my email and would get back to me as soon as possible. I never actually got a reply, I had to go there in person to confirm it was open. Oh and one of the piece of ID the website told me was an acceptable form of identification wasn't actually acceptable (thankfully the person at the desk was smart enough to realize that it really should be acceptable and just let it slide). Around the same time I ordered something from amazon, it got broken mid transport to my place, so it automatically was sent back to amazon and I got full refund without having to do a single thing. It's just insanely hard to trust the government when the sercive quality you get is bottom tier, especially knowing that I get better service at McDonald from a minimum wage part time employee than from a government employee who make more than median wage and has amazing benefit.
 

Seanchaidh

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That's the main argument and it's an extremely stron one for a good reason. This is essentially a prisoner dilemma on a planetary scale, any country that break with a potential international tax agreement would reap reward for themselves much higher than what they would lose, even though the loss across the entire world would be greater than the gain that country would get. There are country whose entire economy depend on being a tax heaven, if they stopped most of them have no industry to speak of, they would go from being 1st to 3rd world in a matter of months.
The United States could crush tax havens with sanctions or any of the other tools it deploys against socialist governments. It doesn't because people who avoid tax can also bribe.
 

Satinavian

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That's the main argument and it's an extremely stron one for a good reason. This is essentially a prisoner dilemma on a planetary scale, any country that break with a potential international tax agreement would reap reward for themselves much higher than what they would lose, even though the loss across the entire world would be greater than the gain that country would get. There are country whose entire economy depend on being a tax heaven, if they stopped most of them have no industry to speak of, they would go from being 1st to 3rd world in a matter of months.
Sanctions, embargos or simply laws that you can't tax your earnings there and have to do it elsewehere could easily close those. There even has been some progress made in the last decades and when the EU and the US really want an Tax haven gone, it will be gone. Really, when the EU can succesfully demand that companies have to store EU-customer data on EU servers, or use EU seated clearing houses, they could totally demand that bissness profits from EU buissness gets taxed in the EU and criminalize accounting tricks to prevent that.

We might actually see some tax havens dry up in the future after Brexit. The UK has a couple of oversea ones and now has to defend their existance alone.
 

Agema

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We might actually see some tax havens dry up in the future after Brexit. The UK has a couple of oversea ones and now has to defend their existance alone.
That's an interesting point, because British Overseas Territories have rights of self-determination, and at least two have made significant noises about declaring independence if the UK shuts down their money laundering operations. If you think they regularly bribe a countries of ~50 million into compliance, just imagine how easy it is to bribe a country of 50,000 into compliance.
 

stroopwafel

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No, those are just memes that have been around forever. Pretty much every state has a homeless problem and a lot of businesses are closing because of covid. I mean some of the wealthier ones might be leaving for tax reasons but Cali is huge monetarily. It would take a lot for it to go down the proverbial drain and its no where near.
Every state has a tent city? Living costs and particularly housing costs are way too high in California. I'm not saying there won't be mass concentrations of wealth in California but it will be contrasted with extreme poverty and segregation plus gang violence. It's similar as South Africa and even here it shows how general socio-economic decline will eventually drag everything down with it. There is point where poverty and violence can no longer be contained to a few tents and poor neighbourhoods. It's no surprise many of the most high profile companies see the sign on the wall.


Actually if I remember right Amazon was one of the earlier big companies to jump on the $15 an hour band wagon.

The problem isn't that there are billionaires, the problem is there are billionaires when a lot of people make $50k or less a year. Its the income inequality that creates the problems since finite things like land and housing will tend to match the price that the wealthiest is willing to spend on it and that shuts out and strains those that can't hope to match that amount and it takes awhile for prices to fall back to a less dumb level. So you either need to bring up the majorities earning power or reduce the total amount that the highest up have.
Leaving the entire housing market to private investors is a mistake in the first place. Capitalism doesn't work without free choice and competition to bring prices down. With housing people have both no choice not to have a roof under their head and there is no competition. Quite the opposite, investors use it to inflate their wealth. Investors that use the property market to speculate and drive up prices and lock entire areas off for lower income people to have a home should simply be disowned. It's easy to legislate property prices and minimum wages that are an adequate reflection of living costs. It's a political choice not to do it. People should never have to spent more than half their income on rent.'Taxing the rich' in itself solves nothing because the political choices will remain the same. Rather than income more fair taxation would also be on dividend and royalty ie passive income, both almost non-existent in the entire western world and both almost exclusively for the rich and famous.Tax revenue should go where it is needed most, just as the government is there to provide protection where it is needed the most. The rich don't exist at the expense of the poor, that is just a false dichotomy. Income inequality is only a problem because the government isn't taking it's responsibility in one of the areas where the free market is actually counter productive. Housing and adequate means of living are basic human rights and when society at large fails to provide this then will income inequality indeed become a destabilizing factor. It's a failure of government.