Thursday, April 24, 2014

Who Built It?

Mr. Dose is onto something.  Quoting now from economist Kyle Pomerleau’s Tax Foundation analysis, “Summary of the Latest Federal Income Tax Data,”:
The Top 50 Percent of All Taxpayers Paid 97 Percent of All Income Taxes; the Top 5 Percent Paid 57 Percent of All Income Taxes; and the Top 1 Percent Paid 35 Percent of All Income Taxes in 2011.
“Progressives” love to complain about the alleged unfairness of the amount of income earned (“Progressives typically use misleading terms such as “claimed by”) the top 1 percent of income earners.  Why not complain instead about the unfairness of the amount of tax revenues received by the top 1 percent of net-tax-revenue recipients?  Why are the annual tax-receipt incomes of this small group less worthy of condemnation than are the annual pre-tax market-earnedincomes of “the 1 percent” who are the regular objects of criticism, envy, and childish populist moralizing?
Maybe You DID Build That!

Big Brother Is Watching You Eat -

Look out soon for more control over what you eat.

An NPS student’s scary Carmel experience may alter his life for good

The police abuse here was criminal, the AG's response should be too.  I hope this young man get's a competent attorney and collects a mint.

Nothing More Harmful that Crop Farming

"I know many ranchers who are excellent — they want to know how to manage lands to improve the chances of many of these species with high conservation value," says Pague. "I would say fully a third of land out there is in pretty good condition, supporting wildlife and plant communities."
And Pague notes that the conversation around how to produce beef in a "sustainable" way is evolving fast. "Meat buyers and packers, land managers, government agencies, McDonald's — a lot of people are interested. This topic is really hot." (See Dan Charles' post from earlier this week on how this conversation is playing out globally, too.) 

Nothing is more harmful to the environment that annual mono crop farming on an industrial scale.  Sure, that's a bad way to feed animals, too, but the underlying issue is industrial mono crop production.

What Thomas Piketty's Popularity Tells Us About The Liberal Press

I'd ask if there are any historical examples that prove that skewed wealth in a generally prosperous nation is more damaging to its democratic institutions than the reallocation of wealth by a coercive state. But then I realize, as with any Marxist revival, the answer is: This time we're gonna do it right!
Judging from the political rhetoric of the day, liberals already believe that higher taxes on the wealthy can create more opportunity for the poor and middle class. While some of us would argue that the nexus between high taxes and economic growth is tenuous, debating whether the top marginal tax rate should be 25 or 33 or 35 percent is well within the boundaries of a centrist debate. 

Ah, the left, so in love with the use of force.  But when you talk to a committed "government is the cure for what ails us" person, and point out that government is a synonym for "people with guns", they can't even process that what they believe in whole heartedly is "smarter people with more guns".

The Revolt of the Cities

It will be great if these initiative "work".  I doubt they will.

1.  Do gooder ism will become cronyism, a la Detroit and all the rest
2.  Meddling will create problems which will require more meddling until there are so many rules and it is so expensive to do anything good, that it won't be possible.  Employers will leave, again, for the same reasons they left before.  Taxpayers will too.
3.  The drug war rules everything.  Until the perverse incentives of the criminalization of drugs sales are removed or reduced, the inner cities will controlled by the drug trade just as they were by alcohol prohibition.  
4.  The cities will run out of money to do anything at all, a la Detroit and the others.

Wait, are those dinosaurs or negative unintended consequences of government force?

Going forward, however, the feds aren't kicking in as much cash, which means that states running their own exchanges have to figure out how to fund their own operations. Trouble is, the enrollment numbers aren't working out quite the way they were expected in some places. So states are considering some additional measures—by which I mean fees—to make up the difference.  For example, Colorado is considering instituting a $13 million fee to keep its exchange fiscally afloat.

Ah yes, the march of the negative unintended consequences...