Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Who is tax helping?

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I want to ask who is tax helping? Tax was initially established to finance wars. Money was expropriated to fight wars to protect the monarch or expand his territories abroad. The British Empire was better than most, but it was unjust too. Consider the history of the East India Company. Eventually tax as a post-war phenomena was intended to finance reconstruction of destitute countries - because of war again. Well we are not at war now, but tax persists. In the post-war period the justification was to help the poor. It was an easy argument for governments to win because the poor were the majority, so the rich just had to suck up. Right? Wrong. The wealthy had greater capital mobility, lawyers to fight issues in court. The tax administrators didn't have time for that. So what did they do? They promised welfare programs in perpetuity but also wanted to tax the poor. So today the poor are taxed. But now they are talking about winding back the welfare state by allowing benefits from later in life. You are working longer.

The paradox is that the public service has expanded 4x, its benefits have ballooned. Some such as judges and military servicemen even get tax-free income. That's bargaining power for you. Rest assured the poor are no better off, not because of government. The number of welfare recipients under the welfare state has also ballooned. Why? Because government creates problems. I'll end up welfare. No desire to contribute to this system. Wish I could laugh. I can't even say this system is for public servants. I dont even think it serves them. It was designed by politicians, but I dont think you can fake reality. I think they just dont know how to live a meaningful, efficacious life, and they are taking everyone down with them. People more goal-driven, and less intellectual will argue they are doing better. But they should just wait. It will take them down a peg too. Ethically they are less than they were. Maybe they will be caught for insider trading, drift in anguish after a failed marriage, grow up to see their kids on drugs. Tell me society is not getting sicker. Oh yeh they are making money. Thats become so thoughtless. Even scientific discoveries are made by accident today. It takes an energy crisis to find a new energy solution. In between crisis there is very little that passes for valid science. This is not a new topic. Ayn Rand wrote as much about the decline or stagnation of society in 'Atlas Shrugged' (see My Amazon Books).
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