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Political Roundtable Part XXVI

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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#881 » by montestewart » Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:42 pm

I_Like_Dirt wrote:
Pointgod wrote:So Jefferey Epstein commits suicide under very suspicious circumstances right after a couple of his high profile friends were named in public. I’m not a conspiracy theorist but this **** is fishy and shady as hell. I’m sure he had a long list of powerful friends including Trump. It’s going to be interesting seeing competing theories about whether Trump or the Clintons had him killed.


I'm gonna guess neither. He had already attempted suicide once. At most maybe you're talking about paying for someone not to watch him that closely but historically it doesn't take much for prisons to look the other way. But yes, it's going to spawn all sorts of conspiracy theories and they might not even be wrong for all I know. There definitely were a lot of wealthy people sweating bullets where Epstein was concerned.

A colleague pointed out that his death largely eliminates any warrant irregularity issues, so perhaps it is a conspiracy to reveal a particularly skewed truth.

In any event, people die in prison all the time, with a higher suicide incidence just after initial incarceration. It sounds like that particular facility is severely understaffed. Conspiracy theories help fill a void where the answer is as likely to be apathy or incompetence.

In this crazy cro-modern world, where the glut of conspiracy theories increasingly renders all conspiracy theories coequal and similarly coequal to fact, conspiracy theories tend to benefit Trump, regardless of their subject.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#882 » by dobrojim » Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:02 am

I_Like_Dirt wrote:
dckingsfan wrote:
dobrojim wrote:Nominal transaction tax...key word is nominal. I suspect besides raising some,
arguably nominal, amount of money, the things it would impact are things
like high frequency trading that some people may make money doing but
that have little productive value.

Here is the CBO analysis... One other thing - Sanders is saying the tax (from '19-28) will raise $2.4 trillion, CBO says 777B. I think it would be far less as the transaction trades decrease. So, it wouldn't actually fund his program(s).

You have done a pretty good job pointing out the benefits - so I will take the devil's advocate side and point out what the CBO sees as potential negatives:

The tax could also have a number of negative effects on the economy stemming from its effects on asset prices, the cost of capital for firms, and the frequency of trading. Traders and investors would seek to recoup the cost of trading by raising the return they required on financial assets, thereby lowering the prices of those assets. The tax would be small relative to the returns that investors with long-term horizons could earn, so the effect on asset prices would be partly mitigated if traders and investors reduced the frequency of their trading—but less frequent trading would lower liquidity and reduce the amount of information reflected in prices. Consequently, investment could decline (even though higher tax revenues would lower federal borrowing and thus increase the funds available for investment) because of increases in the cost of issuing debt and equity securities that would be subject to the tax and potential negative effects on derivatives trading, which could make it more difficult to efficiently distribute risk in the economy. The cost to the Treasury of issuing federal debt could increase because of the increase in trading costs and the reduction in liquidity. Household wealth would decline with the reduction in asset prices, which would lower consumption.


https://www.cbo.gov/budget-options/2018/54823?mod=article_inline


The fun part about this is they're making sense until they start arguing that lowering consumption is a bad thing. We really need to start figuring out means of managing the economy that don't require maintaining or even increasing the massive levels of consumption we're currently seeing. There isn't a population problem in the world. There is, however, a consumption problem. Granted, this is probably not the best way of going about reducing consumption, but still...


Personally I was struck by the lack of strength in their analysis. This might do that...this
could do some other thing. I don't see a whole lot of rigor there admittedly without going
into the weeds of it. I'm talking about a nominal tax that retail investors would be very
unlikely to feel. I think the argument that it will hurt the markets are from people
that believe in their personal value (likely to be huge) as traders doing things that
really amount to gambling basically. And they dont want anyone to start asking questions
about how this is useful to society as a whole.
A lot of what we call 'thought' is just mental activity
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#883 » by pancakes3 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:51 am

The framing does leave much to be desired, especially since:

- “things that don’t allow for maximum efficiency in markets” is not the same as “hurts the economy”
- like dobro said, the cost/benefit of a marginal decrease in market efficiency that would result in free college tips overwhelmingly in free college’s favor

Need Zonk to weigh in on just how hand-wavy the math is on these projections, and also to keep in mind that policies, especially tax-related policies are fluid and rescindable. Free college would be harder/impossible to rescind but that’s a different conversation
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#884 » by Ruzious » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:51 am

Typical day in the life of Trump:
- Spends several tweets trashing a guy he fired 11 days after he originally hired him.
- Republican Ann Coulter says he should be charged for hiring ILLEGAL aliens... because it's apparently clear to everyone that his businesses hire illegal aliens and have for quite some time... LOFL.
- He's actively working to take benefits away from LEGAL immigrants.
- He's spent a good chunk of time tweeting about Donny Deutsch - who must have insulted Trump, but... why in the world would the President of the USA care about anything Donny Deutsch said? Meanwhile, Trump is hurling 3rd grade level insults at him.
- He wrote a tweet... seriously... accusing Bill Clinton of murdering Epstein... not the Welcome Back Kotter Epstein - the pedophile Epstein.
- He wrote a tweet accusing Clinton of taking private trips to "Pedophile Island". Meanwhile, people are responding with video after video showing Trump palling around with Epstein the Pedophile - like they were best buds - one clearly showing Trump pointing to a girl and saying "Isn't she hot?" to Epstein the Pedophile.
- He wrote a tweet trying to downplay the fact that Kim Yong Un tested missiles and said he can't wait to see him again.
- He took the time to take several shots at Bill Maher, so he must have also watched Maher's show.
- He took the time to take several shots at the NYTimes, so he must have had someone summarize a sentence in a paragraph in an article for him.

Yeah, that's really a day in the life - and there was probably twice or thrice the idiocy that I mentioned. And it's a typical day. We can't keep going like this. Everybody has to understand this and say enough's enough NOW.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#885 » by montestewart » Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:39 am

Ruzious wrote:Typical day in the life of Trump:
- Spends several tweets trashing a guy he fired 11 days after he originally hired him.
- Republican Ann Coulter says he should be charged for hiring ILLEGAL aliens... because it's apparently clear to everyone that his businesses hire illegal aliens and have for quite some time... LOFL.
- He's actively working to take benefits away from LEGAL immigrants.
- He's spent a good chunk of time tweeting about Donny Deutsch - who must have insulted Trump, but... why in the world would the President of the USA care about anything Donny Deutsch said? Meanwhile, Trump is hurling 3rd grade level insults at him.
- He wrote a tweet... seriously... accusing Bill Clinton of murdering Epstein... not the Welcome Back Kotter Epstein - the pedophile Epstein.
- He wrote a tweet accusing Clinton of taking private trips to "Pedophile Island". Meanwhile, people are responding with video after video showing Trump palling around with Epstein the Pedophile - like they were best buds - one clearly showing Trump pointing to a girl and saying "Isn't she hot?" to Epstein the Pedophile.
- He wrote a tweet trying to downplay the fact that Kim Yong Un tested missiles and said he can't wait to see him again.
- He took the time to take several shots at Bill Maher, so he must have also watched Maher's show.
- He took the time to take several shots at the NYTimes, so he must have had someone summarize a sentence in a paragraph in an article for him.

Yeah, that's really a day in the life - and there was probably twice or thrice the idiocy that I mentioned. And it's a typical day. We can't keep going like this. Everybody has to understand this and say enough's enough NOW.

I just read Donny Deutsch's wikipedia page and I still don't know who he is.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#886 » by dckingsfan » Tue Aug 13, 2019 1:42 pm

dobrojim wrote:
I_Like_Dirt wrote:
dckingsfan wrote:Here is the CBO analysis... One other thing - Sanders is saying the tax (from '19-28) will raise $2.4 trillion, CBO says 777B. I think it would be far less as the transaction trades decrease. So, it wouldn't actually fund his program(s).

You have done a pretty good job pointing out the benefits - so I will take the devil's advocate side and point out what the CBO sees as potential negatives:

https://www.cbo.gov/budget-options/2018/54823?mod=article_inline

The fun part about this is they're making sense until they start arguing that lowering consumption is a bad thing. We really need to start figuring out means of managing the economy that don't require maintaining or even increasing the massive levels of consumption we're currently seeing. There isn't a population problem in the world. There is, however, a consumption problem. Granted, this is probably not the best way of going about reducing consumption, but still...

Personally I was struck by the lack of strength in their analysis. This might do that...this could do some other thing. I don't see a whole lot of rigor there admittedly without going into the weeds of it. I'm talking about a nominal tax that retail investors would be very unlikely to feel. I think the argument that it will hurt the markets are from people that believe in their personal value (likely to be huge) as traders doing things that really amount to gambling basically. And they dont want anyone to start asking questions about how this is useful to society as a whole.

Thanks for the considered response. And you make some good points. First, is day trading useful to society, for the most part I agree with you - the answer is no. But the tax doesn't just hit day traders. And if the tax was being rolled into to reduce day trading - that would be one thing. But it is being rolled into to fund something. And Sanders estimates were 2.4T. CBO 777B. That is a pretty wide gap. And once the tax is in place that 777B will get reduced quickly.

And the part about unintended consequences - the CBO points them out. But a more detailed analysis should be done. I stand by my point that the other unintended consequences of tax would come to bear over time.

Now if Sanders had said, I don't like day trading and I am going to impose a tax to reduce day trading - well then okay.

Instead Sanders is using a gimmick instead of going after what really needs to be done. Namely fixing the tax code. Instead, he is just making our tax code more complicated. IMO, he has been a part of the problem. And just to pile on - there should be no part of this that should be an unfunded mandate to states.

IMO - we need a better way to get education fixed than what Bernie has proposed.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#887 » by dobrojim » Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:28 pm

pancakes3 wrote:The framing does leave much to be desired, especially since:

- “things that don’t allow for maximum efficiency in markets” is not the same as “hurts the economy”
- like dobro said, the cost/benefit of a marginal decrease in market efficiency that would result in free college tips overwhelmingly in free college’s favor

Need Zonk to weigh in on just how hand-wavy the math is on these projections, and also to keep in mind that policies, especially tax-related policies are fluid and rescindable. Free college would be harder/impossible to rescind but that’s a different conversation


How partisan, or perhaps I should say ideological, is the analysis?
Going back several decades, there was a group of economists who
claimed the Clinton 93 or 94 tax increases would be a job killer and
hurt the economy. Not much evidence of that. Also not much evidence
in the constant claims by certain ideologues that tax cuts pay for themselves.
The CBO used to be pretty robust ie non-ideolgical so I am not claiming this is all wrong.
I am skeptical.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#888 » by I_Like_Dirt » Tue Aug 13, 2019 2:51 pm

dobrojim wrote:How partisan, or perhaps I should say ideological, is the analysis?
Going back several decades, there was a group of economists who
claimed the Clinton 93 or 94 tax increases would be a job killer and
hurt the economy. Not much evidence of that. Also not much evidence
in the constant claims by certain ideologues that tax cuts pay for themselves.
The CBO used to be pretty robust ie non-ideolgical so I am not claiming this is all wrong.
I am skeptical.


Just reading the article cited here, it might be partisan but I don't think that's really the main issue. The bigger issue is that it's skewed with the concept of benefiting financial markets for their own sake and that's a place where both parties have been clearly infiltrated, so to speak. There needs to be some sort of answer to the question of "who does this benefit besides high volume traders or high quantity investors?" and that doesn't actually seemed to be answered here.

I don't love Bernie's plan and prefer something that would be a bit simpler/easier to enforce and less easily avoided but this doesn't strike me as an argument against it. They even admit that the evidence they're using to suggest that taxing day trading leads to less stable prices is from a time before the rise of high-frequency trading which suggests that they don't really have much in the way of actual evidence at all. It does read like a handy argument to support not doing something wealthy investors don't want because it's relatively easy/safe money for them. They also point out that many European countries have such taxes and it hasn't actually been a problem and would, in fact, mitigate a lot of the issues they're talking about.

As for concerns of well-informed investors no longer taking part, that's a load of baloney. They just wouldn't be as incentivized to flip back and forth a bunch of times to maximize profits on repeated trades, though they could still do that, and would be more incentivized to back longer term viability of businesses which is actually what we should hope for.

Honestly, after reading that CBO analysis, I came away more in support of Bernie's transactional tax, not less. The one catch is that I do agree that banking on his estimates of the amount of income it would generate in order to fund something is dangerous. I think he's vastly overestimating the amount it would bring in, though I suspect that the CBO is also slightly underestimating a bit. The tax, in and of itself, isn't necessarily the problem. It would have potentially two main consequences: increasing government income, and reducing day-trading. I don't see either of those as particularly bad things. Trying to fund something else with money that isn't there, though, is an is an issue - particularly when dealing with the underlying cost explosion isn't being dealt with.

As for dck's point about simplifying the tax code, on its own, I don't actually see this as something that couldn't be done in tandem to that. Bernie isn't talking about that, though, nor is anybody, really. Fixing the taxes that are already in place before going about imposing a bunch of others makes sense. This is a society that prefers to simply leave inner cities behind and just move a few miles down the road into the suburbs, though, so...
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#889 » by dckingsfan » Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:15 pm

↑↑↑↑↑

Don't disagree with much of that - except that I think the CBO is OVER estimating the revenue - especially long-term. Don't put a program on the back of a tax source that won't be there.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#890 » by Pointgod » Tue Aug 13, 2019 3:34 pm

dckingsfan wrote:↑↑↑↑↑

Don't disagree with much of that - except that I think the CBO is OVER estimating the revenue - especially long-term. Don't put a program on the back of a tax source that won't be there.


In terms of simplifying the tax code how do you feel about eliminating tax breaks for religious organizations? In terms of fairness it goes along the lines of no deductions for anyone, but politically it would be a landline. Also how do you feel about a national tax to that will simply go to paying down the national debt? Just curious about your perspective since you’re very knowledgeable in these areas.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#891 » by dckingsfan » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:38 pm

Pointgod wrote:
dckingsfan wrote:↑↑↑↑↑

Don't disagree with much of that - except that I think the CBO is OVER estimating the revenue - especially long-term. Don't put a program on the back of a tax source that won't be there.

In terms of simplifying the tax code how do you feel about eliminating tax breaks for religious organizations? In terms of fairness it goes along the lines of no deductions for anyone, but politically it would be a landline. Also how do you feel about a national tax to that will simply go to paying down the national debt? Just curious about your perspective since you’re very knowledgeable in these areas.

Two pieces to this - the first one is personal tax policy and the other is corporate tax policy.

I am all for eliminating any personal tax carveouts including deductions to any charitable corporation including religious organizations. You can't split those things up.

As for corporate taxes. I have never been a huge fan of high corporate taxes. When Canada reduced their corporate taxes to 10%, things got a lot better for them. Eventually profits from corporations come out as either wages, dividends or get invested in the business. That is one reason that the investment and earned income should be taxed the same. Then we wouldn't care if Amazon doesn't pay taxes (mostly because they invest it back into their business and historically didn't generate a profit). Our net receipts would be the same (they are low historically right now as a percentage of GDP).

And I am all for a VAT tax that would go only to reducing the national debt. The problem with that one is that it wouldn't constrain spending so it probably wouldn't work. I really like Nancy Pelosi's PAYGO. I think she could figure out some legislation that combined PAYGO with a VAT tax.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#892 » by verbal8 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:53 pm

Don't sleep on MJ Hegar. It was women in moderate districts that took the House in 2018. If Hegar and McGrath pull off admittedly uphill battles, it could be women leading the Dems taking the Senate.

dckingsfan wrote:
Kanyewest wrote:Biden comes out ahead in Texas vs Trump in the early polls. It may not last for this election but maybe Texas will turn blue in the not to distant future.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/tx/texas_trump_vs_biden-6818.html

So, I am still walking in Houston, voter registration this time (and not a fun thing to do - this streak of 100+ days feels like it is never going to end).

I am seeing an interesting split in families where the women are starting to come out against Trump and willing to register. But the demographics of this city are soooo skewed I don't think it is reliable barometer for the rest of the US.

Having said that - having ridden the coattails of Beto to a completely D Houston government was pretty interesting. Folks here now seem energized to keep it going. Problem is - we don't have a Beto to coattail.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#893 » by dckingsfan » Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:29 pm

verbal8 wrote:Don't sleep on MJ Hegar. It was women in moderate districts that took the House in 2018. If Hegar and McGrath pull off admittedly uphill battles, it could be women leading the Dems taking the Senate.

dckingsfan wrote:
Kanyewest wrote:Biden comes out ahead in Texas vs Trump in the early polls. It may not last for this election but maybe Texas will turn blue in the not to distant future.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/tx/texas_trump_vs_biden-6818.html

So, I am still walking in Houston, voter registration this time (and not a fun thing to do - this streak of 100+ days feels like it is never going to end).

I am seeing an interesting split in families where the women are starting to come out against Trump and willing to register. But the demographics of this city are soooo skewed I don't think it is reliable barometer for the rest of the US.

Having said that - having ridden the coattails of Beto to a completely D Houston government was pretty interesting. Folks here now seem energized to keep it going. Problem is - we don't have a Beto to coattail.

I haven't even dipped my toe into the senate race yet... ultimately, I may just work for the senate candidate for 2020. It is going to be very interesting...
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#894 » by Kanyewest » Thu Aug 15, 2019 8:42 pm

The polls on RealClear politics appear to have differing results.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/us/2020_democratic_presidential_nomination-6730.html

The YouGov/Economist is the most optimistic for a close race between Biden and Warren with Sanders closing in while some polls have either Sanders or Warren in 2nd with Biden leading by double digits. I believe a poll came out recently that Sanders was winning in New Hampshire while another poll had Warren winning in Wisconsin. Biden still comes out winning in southern states like South Carolina by a comfortable margin.

Still a long time to go, it will be interesting to see what happens when Biden/Sanders/Warren share the same debate stage.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#895 » by Ruzious » Thu Aug 15, 2019 9:04 pm

Kanyewest wrote:The polls on RealClear politics appear to have differing results.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/us/2020_democratic_presidential_nomination-6730.html

The YouGov/Economist is the most optimistic for a close race between Biden and Warren with Sanders closing in while some polls have either Sanders or Warren in 2nd with Biden leading by double digits. I believe a poll came out recently that Sanders was winning in New Hampshire while another poll had Warren winning in Wisconsin. Biden still comes out winning in southern states like South Carolina by a comfortable margin.

Still a long time to go, it will be interesting to see if Biden/Sanders/Warren share the same debate stage.

I guess it makes sense that Biden would be the top polling Dem in the South - seeing as he is seen to be the least left of the Dem candidates - and probably the most personable of them - yes, I think that makes a difference.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#896 » by Pointgod » Fri Aug 16, 2019 1:36 am

Kanyewest wrote:The polls on RealClear politics appear to have differing results.

https://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2020/president/us/2020_democratic_presidential_nomination-6730.html

The YouGov/Economist is the most optimistic for a close race between Biden and Warren with Sanders closing in while some polls have either Sanders or Warren in 2nd with Biden leading by double digits. I believe a poll came out recently that Sanders was winning in New Hampshire while another poll had Warren winning in Wisconsin. Biden still comes out winning in southern states like South Carolina by a comfortable margin.

Still a long time to go, it will be interesting to see what happens when Biden/Sanders/Warren share the same debate stage.


I think the problem that you’ll see once the candidates narrow is that Sanders and Warren will split the votes from the same pool of supporters. Biden can pick off Harris, Buttigieg and even some Booker supporters.
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#897 » by pancakes3 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 3:15 am

there's been a lot of sh*tty news lately ranging from Steve King making a case for rape babies, Cuccinelli dogwhistling that Ellis Island was ok bc it was for white immigrants, and Israel banning Omar and Tlaib from an official visit
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#898 » by Pointgod » Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:44 pm

This is gross and just shows how pathetic and weak Trump and Netanyahu are

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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#899 » by Ruzious » Fri Aug 16, 2019 1:47 pm

pancakes3 wrote:there's been a lot of sh*tty news lately ranging from Steve King making a case for rape babies, Cuccinelli dogwhistling that Ellis Island was ok bc it was for white immigrants, and Israel banning Omar and Tlaib from an official visit

The fact that our President goes to the leader of Israel to get him to ban 2 Americans from going to Israel - strictly because they are political rivals of his... this has gone so far past the point of absurdity... How do people not understand this? Do people not care because it falls below countless other idiocies and pettinesses that he's done and said? Hey, as long as he's not risking lives or committing treason this time...?
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Re: Political Roundtable Part XXVI 

Post#900 » by pancakes3 » Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:01 pm

trump mocks fat guy at his rally mistaking him for a protester, has him kicked out.

fat guy was, and still is a trumper, says "Everything's good! I love the guy! He's the best thing that ever happened to this country."

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/08/donald-trump-protester-weight-problem
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