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# Taxes for the Poor

 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:39:18 PMPosted: 5 years agoOk, this is in response to LK's claim that the poor should pay more in taxes.First off, let's define some things. For poor, let's use the bottom 20% of Americans. The mean income for the bottom 20% is \$11,5003.[1] The mean household size for people through \$25,000 is 1.9, so we'll say 2.[2]Let's look at three households. For \$11,500 we will look at a Single taxpayer, a HoH with 1 dependent, and a married couple with no dependents. I used a bit of copypasta so forgive any mistakes.\$11,500 - SingleThis household will pay \$650 into FICA[3].This household will pay \$35 into federal taxes[4].\$100/month for food, \$400/month for rent, \$100/month for utilities. These figures are from my personal experience with prices in AZ.That's \$7885 total in expenses, leaving the household with \$3615 left for the year.\$11,500 - HoHThis household will pay \$650 into FICA[3].This household will receive \$4094 in federal taxes[4].\$200/month for food, \$500/month for rent, \$100/month for utilities.That's \$10,250 total in expenses, leaving the household with \$5344 left for the year.\$11,500 - MarriedThis household will pay \$650 into FICA[3].This household will receive \$464 in federal taxes[4].\$200/month for food, \$500/month for rent, \$100/month for utilities.That's \$10,250 total in expenses, leaving the household with \$1714 left for the year.So the median groups for the bottom quintile could have some money left over, but we haven't factored in the cost of clothes, transportation, schooling, healthcare, savings, etc... These groups are (generally) receiving quite a bit in tax credits. Just taking away the credits would leave them with almost nothing. Adding tax on top of that would be asking them for money that they don't have.I don't think it's right to take away any 'excess' shown here. These people have a 50% chance of moving up a quintile over the course of a decade. Take away their extra income, and upward mobility will suffer.I think it would be unconscionable to add tax to these groups, and just as bad to take away their credits.I do think there should be outreach programs though, for households that are taking advantage of EIC. Helping with education and career planning, things like that.[1]http://www.taxpolicycenter.org...[2]http://en.wikipedia.org...[3]http://www.calculatorpro.com...[4]http://www.hrblock.com...twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 12,788 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PMPosted: 5 years agoFirst of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself)."Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
 Posts: 6,924 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:45:00 PMPosted: 5 years agoThe marginal utility of extra income drops off sharply once a family/individual has reached a certain point of self-sustenance (when all fixed costs/rent/food/education can be paid for). I believe that taxes should be progressively based on increasing tax burden proportionately to how much income over the point of self-sustenance. Of course, this would take a lot of nuances (for instance, self-sustenance points change by region). This would be included with a lower tax rate for capital investments.
 Posts: 6,924 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:46:32 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).A better question is how the government can best protect the people in arenas that cannot be better served by pure privatization. For example, fire departments and police in low-income areas.
 Posts: 12,788 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:48:55 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:46:32 PM, Wnope wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).A better question is how the government can best protect the people in arenas that cannot be better served by pure privatization. For example, fire departments and police in low-income areas.Say what? I'm not talking about privatization....I'm asking Jaxson how he justifies usage of resources without some form of compensation to the provider.Also, I agree that critical resources in lower-income areas should remain publicly funded, but in higher-income areas become more privatized."Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:49:04 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).First off, people do pay for some of them.If you pay rent, some of that goes to property tax to pay for schools and such. If you drive a car or ride a bus, some of that goes to fuel tax that pays for roads and such.Secondly, no, America is not a country where we say 'Hey! You! I know you lost your job, but since you aren't paying taxes right now, you aren't entitled to police protection, or military protection for that matter. You have lost your rights because you're poor!'.Are you really making that argument?twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:50:02 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:45:00 PM, Wnope wrote:The marginal utility of extra income drops off sharply once a family/individual has reached a certain point of self-sustenance (when all fixed costs/rent/food/education can be paid for). I believe that taxes should be progressively based on increasing tax burden proportionately to how much income over the point of self-sustenance. Of course, this would take a lot of nuances (for instance, self-sustenance points change by region). This would be included with a lower tax rate for capital investments.Which is basically why we have personal exemptions and earned income credit. I'm not at all fine with raising taxes on people who are struggling to provide the necessities of life.twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:51:21 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:48:55 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:46:32 PM, Wnope wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).A better question is how the government can best protect the people in arenas that cannot be better served by pure privatization. For example, fire departments and police in low-income areas.Say what? I'm not talking about privatization....I'm asking Jaxson how he justifies usage of resources without some form of compensation to the provider.Also, I agree that critical resources in lower-income areas should remain publicly funded, but in higher-income areas become more privatized.LK, there is no income requirement to retain US citizenship. That's how I justify it.How can you justify otherwise? If someone isn't paying taxes they can't use something?Oh crap. You better not get ride a bike to work. You won't be paying anything toward the upkeep of the road and can't use it.twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 6,924 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 1:56:36 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:50:02 PM, JaxsonRaine wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:45:00 PM, Wnope wrote:The marginal utility of extra income drops off sharply once a family/individual has reached a certain point of self-sustenance (when all fixed costs/rent/food/education can be paid for). I believe that taxes should be progressively based on increasing tax burden proportionately to how much income over the point of self-sustenance. Of course, this would take a lot of nuances (for instance, self-sustenance points change by region). This would be included with a lower tax rate for capital investments.Which is basically why we have personal exemptions and earned income credit. I'm not at all fine with raising taxes on people who are struggling to provide the necessities of life.Flat tax advocates would argue otherwise.
 Posts: 12,788 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:02:56 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 1:51:21 PM, JaxsonRaine wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:48:55 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:46:32 PM, Wnope wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).A better question is how the government can best protect the people in arenas that cannot be better served by pure privatization. For example, fire departments and police in low-income areas.Say what? I'm not talking about privatization....I'm asking Jaxson how he justifies usage of resources without some form of compensation to the provider.Also, I agree that critical resources in lower-income areas should remain publicly funded, but in higher-income areas become more privatized.LK, there is no income requirement to retain US citizenship. That's how I justify it.How can you justify otherwise? If someone isn't paying taxes they can't use something?That wouldn't be very effective. You force people to pay the tax and use the good."Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
 Posts: 12,788 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:03:50 PMPosted: 5 years ago"Struggling to provide for necessities" does not justify receiving goods for free."Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
 Posts: 5,316 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:04:15 PMPosted: 5 years agoif someone comes into Wal-Mart and says "I'm starving, I need food or I'll die" and you don't give them food, essentially rejecting them their life over making a larger profit, this would be failing Corporate Social Responsibility, and thus Wal-Mart is acting unjustly.Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP. Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
 Posts: 12,788 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:06:32 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 2:04:15 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:if someone comes into Wal-Mart and says "I'm starving, I need food or I'll die" and you don't give them food, essentially rejecting them their life over making a larger profit, this would be failing Corporate Social Responsibility, and thus Wal-Mart is acting unjustly.CSR doesn't legally exist past an ethical viewpoint."Easy is the descent to Avernus, for the door to the Underworld lies upon both day and night. But to retrace your steps and return to the breezes above- that's the task, that's the toil."
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:11:56 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 2:02:10 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:49:04 PM, JaxsonRaine wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).First off, people do pay for some of them.If you pay rent, some of that goes to property tax to pay for schools and such. If you drive a car or ride a bus, some of that goes to fuel tax that pays for roads and such.That tax is absolutely minimal and completely universal. I am talking about income taxes.You were talking about public services. Not all public services are paid through income tax.Secondly, no, America is not a country where we say 'Hey! You! I know you lost your job, but since you aren't paying taxes right now, you aren't entitled to police protection, or military protection for that matter. You have lost your rights because you're poor!'.What rights? The only rights given to citizens are those in the Constitution and I don't exactly see one that says "You have the right to leech off society" or "You have the right to free ambulance, fire department, and police service."Are you really making that argument?If you went to Wal-Mart and said "I'm starving and I need some food to live," they would justly deny you from taking food for free. That is because you pay for the voluntary exchange of services. Of course, one could argue that State provided services aren't necessarily voluntary but you always have a choice of whether to accept them or to move to a different country.I really don't get what you are saying. Should poor people that pay nothing in federal income taxes just not get anything from the services that those taxes fund? Since there is no way of separating those services out, they should move?twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 5,316 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:12:04 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 2:06:32 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 2:04:15 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:if someone comes into Wal-Mart and says "I'm starving, I need food or I'll die" and you don't give them food, essentially rejecting them their life over making a larger profit, this would be failing Corporate Social Responsibility, and thus Wal-Mart is acting unjustly.CSR doesn't legally exist past an ethical viewpoint.http://papers.ssrn.com...http://www.csrandthelaw.com...Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP. Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:12:45 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 2:02:56 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:51:21 PM, JaxsonRaine wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:48:55 PM, Lordknukle wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:46:32 PM, Wnope wrote:At 6/17/2012 1:41:29 PM, Lordknukle wrote:First of, justify people using public services but not paying for them.Then we will talk about whether the tax is "just" (a subjective term by itself).A better question is how the government can best protect the people in arenas that cannot be better served by pure privatization. For example, fire departments and police in low-income areas.Say what? I'm not talking about privatization....I'm asking Jaxson how he justifies usage of resources without some form of compensation to the provider.Also, I agree that critical resources in lower-income areas should remain publicly funded, but in higher-income areas become more privatized.LK, there is no income requirement to retain US citizenship. That's how I justify it.How can you justify otherwise? If someone isn't paying taxes they can't use something?That wouldn't be very effective. You force people to pay the tax and use the good.Ok, what 'good' and services are you talking about?How do you propose that we only provide those services for taxpayers?twocupcakes: 15 = 13
 Posts: 3,606 Add as FriendChallenge to a DebateSend a Message 6/17/2012 2:13:33 PMPosted: 5 years agoAt 6/17/2012 2:03:50 PM, Lordknukle wrote:"Struggling to provide for necessities" does not justify receiving goods for free.What goods are you talking about?Your original beef with me was how to justify taxes. I asked you how to justify taking taxes from people who don't have the money.twocupcakes: 15 = 13