Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A dividend from the Australian Tax Office

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I received a dividend the other day. Low and behold its from the Australian Tax Office. I really must thank Google (Gmail) because it was correctly labelled as 'spam'. Rest assured I'm not taking any money from the Australian Tax Office (ATO), but neither am I giving them any. Well that's not entirely true. I pay indirect taxes like everyone else, which I suspect actually closely represents my 'burden' on the community. Rest assured if their is any discrepancy I will repay all Australians in spades by holding this, and other governments, accountable for the slavery they are perpetrating upon the Australian community.
Each of us has a right to their own life. I am not against taxation (if you want to call it that), but I am only willing to pay for services which I have agreed to pay, or where determined by a court based on objective reasoning, those public services where a court has ruled the people are obliged to pay based on some 'objective' payment formula. For instance, I would think a petrol tax is a legitimate impost if all the proceeds were spent on road improvement, construction, pathways. At the moment such money goes to unidentified services. Farmers might complain that they use a lot of petrol on-farm, so are penalised, though others might argue that access roads to farms are subsidised for lack of use. Of course all parties should be aware of the money saved by paying a low-cost tax as opposed to the inconvenience of toll booths along stretches of highway, or the hassles of collections from computerised metering along highway stretches, or metres on car kilometres. The amount of petrol consumed is also proportional to the weight class of the vehicle. A weighting factor could also be given to different vehicles on the basis of their fuel efficiency. It would be the responsibility of a court to determine an objective outcome.

Damm! After writing that long email. I realised it really is spam. :) I thought it was just a mistake by Google. But in fact the link goes to another address.
Andrew Sheldon

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Have your cake and eat it too

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Government is without a doubt the most unaccountable organisation that was ever I am not just talking about third world governments, or some rogue states. For my part I hope that there are some rogue states like Iran in the world. Not because I like their policies or thought process, because they are most certainly anti-life philosophies underpinning them. The reason why its good to have some recalcitrant states is because they establish some sense of opposition to Western governments, when most Western governments are all too ready to align themselves for the sake of some global cooperation. The problem of course is that all the rogue states are anti-intellectual, collectivist tyrannies....much like Western governments, just more extreme, so they are by no means an answer.

Its a sad fact of reality that governments have established this bipartisan policy of not criticising each other. Its standard practice not to comment on another countries policies. Australia is forgiven for its treatment of aborigines, the USA is forgiven for its offshore torture facilities, Western Europe is forgiven for trading with the Middle East terrorists. There is an unsavoury acceptance of other governments practices. In Asia, for a long time governments were quiet about political assassinations in the Philippines, outside attitudes to Malaysian former PM Mahathir were equally feeble after he trumped up charges for Anwar.

Domestically the same pattern appears, but with some differences. We can recognise that political parties have rules of engagement. Firstly I might say that people might consider rules of engagement a sensible practice given that there must be national secrets that should not be used as a basis for embarrassing a political opponent. But I would argue that there is considerable ability for two parties in a two-party system to act in unison for their own interests, and that their long term interests can be systematically entrenched. This is afterall why the two party system has established itself in most countries, and retains entrenched. Even where there are more parties, they still align into two coalitions. Sometimes these coalitions comprise up to 15 parties. Its rediculous. How can you have any integrity within a coalition of parties. I personally find it improbable to have a coalition to have a coalition within a group of MPs. This is the problem with democracy. It places the group above the facts. Conveying an argument is subordinated to the need to win the 'numbers', not with arguments but through affiliation. Loyalty buys you a place at the table. If you don't take the place someone else will, and given that all these MPs want power, and they think they are going to change the system later, they all falter as leaders. They become a shadow of the values they once believed.... that is if there was any good in them in the first place. Personally I think they are pretty well born fascists out of the crib. Basically their attitude is - the electorate is too stupid so we have to tell them how to think. I don't dispute there are a lot of stupid, unthinking people, but they rebulk my approach of attempting to educate them. Basically they want to distort people's sense of reality, afterall they never had a good sense of it anyway. You cannot live in the political system and have a sense of reality. Its all about manipulating people into thinking you are serving them, but the fact is, they are just establishing a system which demands a need for them. Basically the system involves the following dynamic equilibrium:
1. Pro-business: Governments offer policies of either grants or tax concessions to appeal to the aspirational.
2. Pro-unions: Governments offer policies that increase regulation, make unionism compulsory,
3. Welfare: Governments offer welfare recipients generous increases in benefits, however within a few years these are eroded by inflation.
4. Families: You offer tax cuts and concessions which are eventually eroded by inflation.
5. Emergencies: The governments create a need for new taxes. The latest scheme is of course indirect taxes. Firstly it was consumption taxes (GST, VAT), now its greenhouse carbon credits. This is a nice way of applying an energy tax. Energy taxes are great because they encourage energy savings and at the same time its a commodity at the centre of global consumption, and once you have established the system, its easy to increase the tax. It doesn't matter whether the public good has been served, so long as people buy into the simple slogans that support these taxes. My favourite is 'Speed kills' as a justification for fines on speeding cars. Its a very creative variant of the scheme 'Cigarettes kill'.

The great aspect about consumption taxes is that they actually rise with inflation like progressive income taxes, but they are better because they are easier to collect. You just have to control businesses, not a lot of non-compliant individuals like me. Having offered all these concessions you need a national emergency to create new taxes, e.g. Greenhouse carbon credits trading. You could be forgiven that the Earth will have a heat wave in a few years. You will find that the evidence will turn against greenhouse in a few years, but not before a new tax has been adopted called emissions trading. Maybe governments bunk the idea of emissions trading at that point...maybe. But only if they decide....'Well the economy is so bad, why don't we just collect tax on energy and administer government-funded research into energy development'. Of course it will be for the common good. It always is! And you will live on hope because you will not earn enough under their system to live with much else.
Andrew Sheldon

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Green Bay Tea Party to rally against Fed Reserve bailouts

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Americans are waking up to the reality of taxation.....that its not about them. Taxation does not exist for the benefit of taxpayers. It exists for the benefit of politicians and its alligned interests - be they bureaucrats, big business looking for government contracts or favours, the welfare lobby, the media, bankers and other dependants upon public money or policy. Taxpayers are really incidental in this equation because there is really no effective oversight of government policy.

There was a time several years ago that I used to make submissions to the Australian and state governments on issues such as water policy, crime prevention, etc. My submissions would be duly recognised, but that was about it. At best, all I could expect was some incidental, uncontroversial quote in the report. This was I guess supposed to excite me. The implication is that the policy analysts that write these reports and the politicians who vet them are not accountable for their decision. The fact that they have considered my ideas is good enough for them, but not for me. As long as they are not required to give reasons for ignoring or rejecting my report or its findings, then they are effectively not accountable. Having the right to vote in an election in 3-4 years is too long to wait for good policy. I also would suggest that a 2-party system does not give a truly competitive political system. Our politicians are competitors at some superficial level, but fundamentally they are co-conspirators sharing power. They protect the rort by having terms of engagement, just as you would have for any war. The difference however is that politicians are not gentlemen, they are parasites living off the hard-earned earnings of other people, and enabling others to similarly live off those expropriated funds.

Hundreds of protesters on the 8th March 2009 gathered outside Titletown Brewing Co., to protest the US government's handling of the financial crisis. The protest was intended to symbolically replicate the Boston Tea Party of 1777. At that time tea importers protested the imposition of excessive taxes by the British government. On this occasion the protesters are protesting against the government programs and Federal Reserve bailouts.

Whilst I welcome protests and hope that it is the start of many more, I hope that people take the time to truly understand the nature of the government's intent, and its arrogance in the face of the taxpayers ambivilence. Taxpayers should accept nothing more than a total repudiation of the system of financial management that made this financial crisis. I would expect nothing less than an independent inquiry. Not an 'independent' inquiry initiated by the government, or some quasi-government body like the IMF, but an association like a small business peak body in the USA, and of course they should be seeking public submissions in the preparation of that report. There is still alot the public can do. The first priority should be understand the political values and economics underpinning the events that lead up to the financial crisis. If you celebrate the right to vote, then celebrate the responsibility to make responsible decisions.
Andrew Sheldon

Sunday, January 4, 2009

What is voluntary compliance?

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Tax authorities in OECD countries have been embracing the notion of 'voluntary compliance'. You might well ask - exactly what is voluntary compliance? Basically its a meaningless word. There is nothing voluntary about paying tax. In fact George Orwell would be turning in his grave because thar wordsmith anticipated such a 'word craft' in his book '1984', where he depicted the sordid state of affairs in a severely collectivist Russia.
Words have ceased to have any objective meaning in modern society. Political correctness is just the start. The assault on language is an assault on your mind. The intent is to make words meaningless, so that these 'wordsmiths' become unaccountable for their actions. If you want any sense of the objectivity of the court system, you need only look at its lack of restraint for government legislation. The courts have allowed government's to get away with the most blatant abuses of power, and its important to ask why. I would suggest its for 3 reasons:
1. Government has the mandate of the people: The notion of mandates is of course a total fraud for several reasons. How can you say that because a voter supported a particular party, that this is an endorsement of its party. You might simply vote for the least offensive party available. Also endorsement of several policies is more likely than all, and who can know what policy detail is involved. For instance, years ago I've had supported privatisation, but if I knew the way they would use it to lock in captive power contracts I might have opposed this hidden form of taxation in many OECD countries where it was practised.
2. The judiciary is paid by government: Being a judge is a pretty safe occupation. Its a self-serving boys club, full of arrogance more than pride judging by my experience with them. This is a massive conflict of interest in the current structure of government.
3. The judiciary is a position of safety: Judges are bureaucrats, which means they are relatively safe people. In a sense that is a good thing because they would be less inclined to be blackmailed, but it also makes them more inclined to other forms of self-delusion. They love their titles, and like other public servants they are essentially guaranteed a job, and are detached from the real world. They are judging real world situations, but in a certain context you can expect them to detach, and that is when their own value system is in question. Being paid by the government is a basis for such a distortion. In this sense the judiciary can be expected to support the government. We have seen this with several prosecutions in the USA, where judges have even discarded the U.S. Constitution, in one case arguing that it has no bearing on State law.
Andrew Sheldon

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