The Instigator
bobthebuilder
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
daerice
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

Resolved: Raising taxes on the rich would not significantly grow the economy

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/6/2013 Category: Economics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 934 times Debate No: 29958
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bobthebuilder

Con

"Doing well is the result of doing good. That's what capitalism is all about. " -Ralph Waldo Emerson
http://www.brainyquote.com...
It is because I believe in this quote, that I stand
RESOLVED:Raising taxes on the rich would not significantly grow the economy.

For clarifications sake, I present the following definitions;
Rich: "Having a great deal of money or assets; wealthy." (Dictionary.com)
Significantly: "Having or likely to have a major effect; important" (Thefreedictionary)
Grow: "To increase gradually in size, amount, etc.; become greater or larger; expand" (Dictionary.com)
Economy: "the prosperity or earnings of a place" (Dictionary.com)

Let's examine a couple of facts;

Fact 1: The Rich pay a Massive amount
Let's look at some evidence from Harry Jacobson in his article, "The Facts On Tax Rates: Who Pays What"(http://www.forbes.com...)
"The current discussion led by President Obama that top earners are not paying "their fair share" of taxes is not supported by the facts. Let"s look at the numbers. Using data from the Internal Revenue Service in 2009, the top 1% of earners, including individuals with incomes of $343,927 or greater, represented 16.9% of all income and paid 36.7% of all federal taxes. Their average tax rate was 24.01%. The top 0.1% who had incomes of $1,432,890 or greater represented 7.8% of all income and paid 17.11% of all taxes."
Insinuating that the rich don't pay their 'fair share' is simply ridiculous.

Fact 2: The Rich employ
Rep. Pete Sessions stated, "The president wants to raise taxes on the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans. But what that does is it net loses 700,000 more American jobs that are really from people who need those jobs."
What happens when a business owner has an increase in income? He invests it, possibly hiring new workers. But when he loses money, he is forced to cut back, firing workers.

Because doing good is an essential to doing well, I hope the voters will agree that Raising taxes on the rich would not significantly grow the economy.
Thank you, and I urge some one to argue the negative.
daerice

Pro

Instigator: "Doing well is the result of doing good. That's what capitalism is all about. " -Ralph Waldo Emerson

----My opponent begins with a quote from Emerson, which sounds nice and simple enough to understand, but upon closer investigation this quote contains an ontological statement and a gross overgeneralization. "Doing well is the result of doing good" - which means 'doing good is the result of doing good.' This self validating statement really means very little. There are countless examples of individuals and businesses doing good and the result of doing very bad and unethical things. Evidence:
Bernie Madoff - stole millions from people by lying and deceiving, yet did quite well, right up until he was arrested. The Mexican Drug cartel is doing very well, yet they acquired their wealth by committing widespread violence and atrocity, not to mention that their actual product is illegal. War profiteers doing very well for themselves, but they too, are in the business of killing. The mafia does well - but it doesn't do good for the communities it infiltrates. Wall Street bankers did quite well buying and selling financial "products" like hedge-funds and derivatives, leverages buyouts, and other risky financial maneuvers are essentially gambling with other people's money. The reckless behavior of banks and investors ultimately caused the second biggest economic disaster in nearly a century - and not just domestically, but globally. In these cases, and others, people make money *at the expense of others,* this doesn't grow the economy, just the personal wealth of a few.

Instigator: Fact 1: The Rich pay a Massive amount
Let's look at some evidence from Harry Jacobson in his article, "The Facts On Tax Rates: Who Pays What"

---The rich pay a "massive" amount? According to who? The rate quoted in your article, 24% is actually fairly low, and this doesn't take into account the money made from Capital Gains, loopholes, tax shelters, or hidden assets stashed in offshore accounts. To get a more global perspective let's look at tax rates in other economically developed countries:
http://www.taxpolicycenter.org... These stats are from the Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute & Brookings Institution, they show that the U.S. tax rate is quite low when compared to other developed countries. Actually, our rates are more in line with countries that suffer from a large degree of income disparity, Korea, Chile, Turkey and Mexico. Those countries are not actually growth models we would want to emulate. There are far more affluent countries that are noteworthy, but we will get to that.
First I want to refer to your link, I checked out the author of your article from Forbes, a certain Harry Jacobsen. Seems that he is the Director of Merck Pharmaceutical and the owner of a private equity firm the works in leveraged buyouts. He is deeply involved in the healthcare industry from an investment standpoint, and I think it is clear that he has an economic interest in keeping his own tax rate low. Harry Jacobsen: Director of Merck Pharmaceutical & Kinetic Concepts http://www.forbes.com...

Instigator: Fact 2: The Rich employ
"…What happens when a business owner has an increase in income? He invests it, possibly hiring new workers. But when he loses money, he is forced to cut back, firing workers."

---What happens when a business owner makes more money? He will most likely save it, unless demand goes up. There is no reason to hire new workers if demand hasn't increased. He could have made the money by simply eliminating positions and piling more work on the remaining employees. With his extra cash he could cut himself big bonus check for Christmas and take his mistress to the Bahamas. Or, he could play around with some commodity speculation, or he could buy another ferrari. Sure, he could "possibly" hire new workers, but why would he if he doesn't have to? It doesn’t make good business sense. If you have already squeezed more productivity out of your workers, then why go back?
The truth is, giving more money to the rich doesn't create jobs, we have been giving them tax breaks for years, corporate profits have soared, during last few years the wealthiest transnational companies have posted record profits. Yet, unemployment remains high. The numbers are clear, her is the non-partisan, extensive study done by the Congressional Research Service and published in 2012: http://ctmirror.com...
(Here is a condensed explanation: http://ctmirror.com...)
The report indicates that the rich are more likely to hoard money than spend it. History shows that high taxes coincide with good economic times, and that when taxes are too low wealth becomes concentrated at the top, leading to instability and hardship for all but the most affluent.
Jobs are created by demand at the bottom, not concentration of wealth at the top. Here is an additional Forbes article on the subject: http://www.forbes.com...

Instigator: "Because doing good is an essential to doing well, I hope the voters will agree that Raising taxes on the rich would not significantly grow the economy."

---Okay, but let's look at who is really doing well, who is flourishing, who is affluent? The newest data on prosperity puts Norway at 1st in the world, while at the same time the U.S. drops out of the top 10, taking 12th place. http://www.bloomberg.com...
A quick look at the top countries on the prosperity index shows that the Scandinavian countries dominate the ranks.
1. Norway
2. Sweden
3. Denmark
4. Australia
5. New Zealand
6. Canada
7. Finland
http://www.prosperity.com... (This ranking is done by the Legatum Prosperity Index)
Here's more on what this ranking means: http://money.uk.msn.com... is not simply a measure of GDP, but an analysis of overall quality of life. GDP alone cannot say much about the standard of living on the ground in any given country, because it offers only the total amount of wealth, it does not consider how that wealth is distributed and where it is manifest.
Now, I would like to refer back to the first chart I linked to, the one showing taxation rates by country.
Let's look at which countries have the highest tax rates:
1. Denmark
2. Sweden
3. Belgium
4. Italy
5. France
6. Finland
7. Austria
8. Norway
Both sets of statistics suggest that taxation rates do correlate with economic prosperity and stable growth. Although the lists do not perfectly correlate, the Scandinavian countries still dominate.

Let's consider an opposing example: Mexico
Mexico has a great deal of wealth, the world's richest man, Carlos Slim, is based in Mexico, and Mexico City has a fantastic number of millionaires. But the wealth in Mexico is obviously not being used to the benefit of the general population which is plagued by violence, abuse, corruption, and a severe lack of clean water, sanitary facilities, general education, and decent roads.
http://abcnews.go.com...
Mexico is a businessman's paradise, it has minimal regulation, relaxed labor and environmental standards, a low minimum wage, and low taxes for big investment firms. The people suffer more or less silently and the classism of feudal Spain still echos in the background.
http://www.mexico-child-link.org...

Perhaps this the concept of 'growth' that corporations envision for the U.S.

All this scare talk about raising taxes on the rich is mainly coming from - the rich.

Thank you for participating.
Debate Round No. 1
bobthebuilder

Con

bobthebuilder forfeited this round.
daerice

Pro

Unfortunately, my opponent has forfeited this round. I had hoped for some engagement on this issue.
Debate Round No. 2
bobthebuilder

Con

bobthebuilder forfeited this round.
daerice

Pro

Since my opponent has forfeited another round, my position stands.
Debate Round No. 3
bobthebuilder

Con

bobthebuilder forfeited this round.
daerice

Pro

Another forfeited round - my arguments stand unopposed.
Debate Round No. 4
bobthebuilder

Con

bobthebuilder forfeited this round.
daerice

Pro

My opponent forfeited this debate. Please vote for me! Thank you.
Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by daerice 4 years ago
daerice
How lame that this is a tie. He forfeited the entire thing.
No votes have been placed for this debate.