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Forum Post: A Detailed Pledge For Would-Be Politicians To Sign To Gain The Support Of The 99%

Posted 6 years ago on Jan. 25, 2012, 10:26 a.m. EST by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL
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More Democracy - A constitutional amendment reversing the Supreme Court's bizarre rulings that under the First Amendment money is speech and corporations are people. Real campaign finance reform with public financing of federal elections. End the "revolving door" of politicians and their staffs from ever becoming becoming lobbyists. End the filibuster - the continued tyranny of 40, the number of senators who can block action—perhaps representing as little as 10 percent of the American public. End gerrymandering by politicians and turn over redistricting to citizen committees.

More Jobs - A ten-year federal program that creates over 30 million jobs rebuilding America that includes infrastructure banks run by engineers, not politicians and a massive clean energy initiative that links some of those new jobs to workers in fossil fuel industries who otherwise would be displaced. Pay for it by taxing all Wall St. financial transactions at 1% raises $400 billion a year, end the wars and reduce military spending.

Progressive Taxation - A federal tax code where the marginal tax rate should be raised to 50 percent on income between $500,000 and $5 million, 60 percent on income between $5 million and $15 million, and 70 percent on income over $15 million. There should be a 2 percent annual surtax on all fortunes over $7 million. The estate tax should be 55 percent and kicks in after $5 million. Capital gains should be taxed at 35 percent. End the home mortgage deduction on first homes over $1 million. End the home mortgage deduction on all second homes. Corporations should be taxed by a variable amount based on the percentage of their payroll going to US workers. A small business employing 100% US workers should be taxed somewhere between 15-20% while a company that has completely shifted its production overseas should be in the 50% range. Eliminate corporate loopholes, unfair tax breaks, exemptions and deductions, subsidies, end offshore tax haven abuse. Expatriation of capital should be subject to a maximum tax-rate penalty with violation considered a felony act.

Better Schools - Properly compensate effective teachers. Copy Finland. Finland draws its teachers from the top 10 percent of college graduates, and teaching regularly beats out finance, law or medicine as a top career choice among high performers. Finland's teachers study education at government expense and receive strong professional support throughout their careers. Finland's "whatever it takes" attitude towards teaching ensures that no child is left behind. Universal prekindergarten, full-day kindergarten and extending the school day and school year. End tenure and LIFO for k-12 teachers nationwide and weed out the bottom 10%.

More Fairness - The fast-growing occupations in America are lower-paying service jobs, like home health care and food service, in which it’s all but impossible to make a living. To lift wages requires generous tax credits for low earners, a higher minimum wage, and guaranteed health care so that wages are not consumed by medical costs. Job training efforts must also focus on the service sector, helping to build so-called career ladders, say, from home health aid to licensed vocational nurse. Make all community colleges tuition-free.

Climate Change - STRICTLY enforce the Clean Air Act.



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[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Well thought out. Your post shows how much the details matter.

[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago


[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

I don't think I missed anything

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 6 years ago

Not the fastest growing but the fastest vanishing jobs are the low paying ones. But say you were to increase the minimum wage, that might have adverse effects. In the short run of course companies will have to hire but in the long run companies will either substitute labor with machinery or outsource. Then no one will have a job.

As for colleges being tutiton free, community colleges are already pretty cheap. And at this time when the US has a record amount of debt, you can pretty much forget any sane government to agree to that. Now is not the time for a free lunch.

About you taxation bit: Dude, I understand you hate all rich people and all corporations. But America did not become the economic powerhouse that it is by protesting in streets or asking for handouts. Its the corporation that have created the wealth in the country. Sure, you can tax them all you want and many would simply move out of the country. Silicon Valley entrepreneurs would rather start their ventures in another country. Over time most economic activity would be dead.

As for Finland, look no further than the number of foreign students that go to Finland for higher studies versus the number of students coming to US. I don't know how good their schools are but students all over the world prefer US over any other country. Besides, Finland does not have much of a financial industry for their best grads to go to Finance. How many Finnish companies are world famous btw?

[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

dear dumb capitalist, quit watching Fox news!!!!

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 6 years ago

Strawman and silly. The problem with fools like you is that you actually watch news at all. Television is a dumbed down medium and the information is meant for the consumption of the average dumbass (like Occutards). So no I don't even have the time to watch news. If you want good reliable info the least you can do is read some of the respected newspapers and better still read Economist or WSJ. I could also ask you to read industry reports but I would not place my hopes that high with Occutards; these are the fools who barely read anything at all in school

[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

Numbskull capitalist - WSJ is fine except for the editorial section where people of your ilk bow to the likes of Karl Rove.

[-] 0 points by smartcapitalist (143) 6 years ago

Aah, a tax on Financial Transaction. Just how many times have I heard this one being thrown around. The basic premise beyond your $400bn figure is that financial institutions in the US would continue to trade at the same volume after the imposition of such a tax and that they would still be equally sound and stable institutions. Financial transactions are very likely highly elastic to changes in taxes. If you change the tax code to increase taxes, the participants in financial markets will change their behavior, but not necessarily in ways that benefit society.

It would lead to concentration of risk in market makers. With transactions being taxed, market makers will seek to conduct fewer transactions but to continue to service their customer transactions, however, they will have to retain larger positions in assets their customers are likely to buy. So they will assume more risk internally and be more susceptible to failure in the event of a sudden market downturn.

Besides with a tax Financial transactions will also tend to become more synthetic, more like the kind of complex and layered collateralized debt obligations that were aplenty before the 2008 collapse. Because the construction of a synthetic CDO does not involve actually purchasing mortgage assets — merely indexing a new financial asset to an existing group of mortgage assets — it would receive favorable tax treatment. So we would sell more of synthetic everything — synthetic equities, bonds, futures, options, commodities, all you need is a little mathematical modelling and who cares what the underlying correlation is or if one at all exists. With more complex instruments getting created, there is a higher change of a market failure because no one would understand the nature of the beast.

There is also the problem of internation taxation and therefore fairness. Most of the taxes would be charged on trading done in Hong Kong, London, Frankfurt and New York. But the taxpayers would not be confined to people and institutions based on those countries. Indian or Greek companies seeking to hedge their currency risk, for example, would find themselves taxed by the US. Does India or Greece really think transferring wealth to the US is a good idea?

[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

dear dumb capitalist, there needs to be less risk taking on Wall St

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 6 years ago

Calling me dumbass does not mean that you understand even remotely the implications of what you are asking. As I have already tried to explain, your hair brained (and certainly not well thought out, you need to be really smart to think through the implications. And not much foresight can be expected of people who could not figure out that they are wasting $100,000 is a liberal arts degree) idea will increase systemic risk (I doubt if you know what it means) and risk taking.

[-] 1 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

you make far too many assumptions of what people may or may not do regarding my recommendations. Do you have a crystal ball? No!

[-] -1 points by smartcapitalist (143) 6 years ago

You are getting nowhere. These are not assumptions and you would have understood if you knew finance.

[-] -1 points by Galt01 (55) 6 years ago

who will be defining "Fair" ?

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (22863) 6 years ago

Not you.

[-] 2 points by DavidGilbert (64) from Tampa, FL 6 years ago

the people, for a change!