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Letters to the Editor

Cut the fat

August 18, 2010

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To the editor:

I just don’t believe our local leaders are up to date in today’s world.

Every day we are bombarded with facts showing product sales, sales tax revenues, consumer spending and consumer confidence are all down. Businesses are laying off because of slow sales, bankruptcies are up, foreclosures are up — on and on. Do you suppose this is because the consumer has little or no extra money to spend? This is trickle-down at its worst: no spending, no merchandise being sold, workers laid off, now no income, no money to spend. Now there are predictions of a possible double-dip recession. So why tax more money out of consumers’ budgets and see it trickle down farther?

We read about heritage development projects, open space preservation projects ($350,000) additional economic development (another $350,000), football stadiums and now tennis courts (??million). The list is endless. Historically only a small percentage of the community will vote, so having these items on a ballot probably will not give a true indication of how the community feels. Why not create a fundraiser similar to a political rally and see how many people really want these projects enough to donate?

The only way the economy is going to turn around is to increase consumer spending. Increasing taxes is not the answer. I challenge the political leaders in Douglas County to re-evaluate the budgets and this time cut the fat.

E.J. Shockley,

Lawrence

Comments

independant1 3 years, 8 months ago

In USA top 50% tax units pay >96% of fed income tax (1999-2007)

Corp income tax? Corps are really pass through tax collectors. Corp fed income tax rate is 35% of profit.

Small business owners pay themselves wages rather than let that money fall into 35% tax rate.

After paying $5.8 billion in taxes in 2005, Wal-Mart earned $11.7 billion—a nice chunk of change. But those earnings were on revenues of $312 billion, a mere 3.4 percent net profit margin.

Exxon Mobil earned $36 billion in 2005 after paying $23.3 billion in taxes on revenues of $371 billion. Looking at that result you realize that in America today, a ‘windfall’ profit is one that amounts to less than 10 percent of revenues.

realclearmarkets

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independant1 3 years, 8 months ago

Total Tax Wedge - Single worker - by country - as percent of income

1 Belgium: 55.6%

2 Hungary: 52.6%

3 Germany: 50.7%

4 Sweden: 48.6%

5 France: 48.3%

6 Italy: 46.2%

7 Finland: 45.9%

8 Austria: 44.7%

9 Denmark: 44.2%

10 Turkey: 43.2%

11 Czech Republic: 43%

12 Poland: 42.9%

13 Netherlands: 42.3%

14 Slovakia: 42%

15 Spain: 37.9%

16 Norway: 37%

17 Greece: 36%

18 Luxembourg: 33.9%

19 Portugal: 32.5%

20 Canada: 30.2%

21 United States: 30%

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edjayhawk 3 years, 8 months ago

The only way to increase consumer spending are jobs that pay a decent wage.

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oneeye_wilbur 3 years, 8 months ago

Overland Park is cutting their budget by 7.4 percent. Where is that front page story on the Journal World?

Cutting budget!

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IndusRiver 3 years, 8 months ago

The solution would be for voter turnout to significantly improve, so that votes more accurately reflect the community as a whole.

Nah, neither voting or working is working.

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IndusRiver 3 years, 8 months ago

But that one Alaska rip-off artist, Ted Stevens, got slammed into the side of a mountain.

Rids the world of evil God's way, I guess.

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IndusRiver 3 years, 8 months ago

Don't know how they managed to put Bernie Madoff in jail, but not the rest of them.

Tom Delay - all charges dropped. Wittig and Lake - let's just go ahead and face it - two more pillaging scumbags who will walk scot free.

And I'm supposed to pay more? Nah, don't think so.

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IndusRiver 3 years, 8 months ago

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20100818/bs_nm/us_mazda_recall

Yet more corporate crap that we live with. Eggs, too, being re-called. Nope, just not safe to get up in the morning, get a little breakfast, and drive to work.

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Jimo 3 years, 8 months ago

"heritage development projects, open space preservation projects ($350,000) additional economic development (another $350,000), football stadiums and now tennis courts (??million)"

Reasonable people may disagree whether these projects are appropriate for government but I would have thought that everyone would agree that these projects are inappropriate for times as difficult as now.

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IndusRiver 3 years, 8 months ago

Yeah, 'cause it's the very wealthy that use all those resources like food stamps, TANF, Medicaid, public schools, etc.

The record shows that nobody owes greedy corporate welfare thugs anything. It's getting down to where there just isn't anybody left whose economy can be plundered.

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salad 3 years, 8 months ago

Scott3460 is echoing the comments of Warren Buffet, which is how I lean too. 1. Eliminate the cap on FICA. 2. Apply FICA to people who make their income from bonuses and stock options instead of wages (the super rich). 3. Do NOT re-new the Bush tax cuts for the rich. 4. Make college tuition tax-deductible. 5. Enforce existing laws on paying wages under the table (illegal workers, etc...).

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notajayhawk 3 years, 8 months ago

Waaaaaah, it's the rich people's fault, waaaaaaah!

Hey, scottie, here's a coupla' questions for ya':

1) Did middle class taxes go up or down when the "very wealthy" got their tax relief?

2) Did overall tax revenues increase or decrease after everyone got those tax breaks (oops, gave away the answer to the first question)?

"As for the rich? They've reaped great benefit from the societal resources we've made available to them. Let them pay more for the use they've made. "

Yeah, 'cause it's the very wealthy that use all those resources like food stamps, TANF, Medicaid, public schools, etc.

Class jealousy is such an ugly thing, scottie.

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scott3460 3 years, 8 months ago

Did cutting the taxes of the very wealthy increase consumer spending?

Government spending of tax receipts churns money through the local economy. Allowing it to accumulate in the Wall Street (and global) bank accounts of the very rich only ensures that it will not benefit local citizens.

A better approach would seem to be to cut the taxes of the dwindling middle class in order to give them more money with which to engage in consumer spending - thus lifting the tide. As for the rich? They've reaped great benefit from the societal resources we've made available to them. Let them pay more for the use they've made.

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jafs 3 years, 8 months ago

If only a small percentage of the community votes, then they are choosing to not be a part of any decisions made at the ballot box.

The solution would be for voter turnout to significantly improve, so that votes more accurately reflect the community as a whole.

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macon47 3 years, 8 months ago

nancy claims all of these "improvement projects" heritage development projects, open space preservation projects ($350,000) additional economic development .,are such a small part of the total budget, they really dont make any difference, ha ha ha ha ha

nancy needs to find another county to rule, i have already grown weary of her

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Shane Garrett 3 years, 8 months ago

Autie: you sound like the grasshopper among the ants.

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autie 3 years, 8 months ago

you all sound like that woof woof guy...totally convinced the sky is falling.

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TrooGrit 3 years, 8 months ago

The problem is, we have no real leadership. Leaders make the tough choices. It's easy for some bureaucrat to sit in their leather chair and decide they need to spend more money. I'm pretty certain if what these klowns want to do went to a vote, it would get voted down in a heartbeat! But they feel since we have no real say in the matter, that it's okay to just do whatever they want, budget be damned! Big time fail for the county commission and the school board. I guess we'll all have to tighten the belt some more.

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kansasmutt 3 years, 8 months ago

E J Good idea, but they really dont care about us. They have shown that by jumping in with a proposed 16.9% starting point and only cutting it to 9.9% rate increase. A group of leaders who cares would have kept it even or dropped it to let the people catch a breath to survive this downturn. You hit the nail on the head with your facts. Spending by the people will end this depression, not tax rate hikes and wasteful spending by our county. I offered them up a plan to cut $750.000.00 to $1.5 million right off the top of the spending , but it was not even an option to them. This latest dip that has just started is going to devistate our area with job losses and negative growth unlike anything we have seen thusfar in our lifetimes. It is going to hit those who are wealthy VERY hard and those who are in the $75,000.00 a year bracket , like a baseball bat. I have talked with business owners all around the area and they say the fall is about to hit like a ton of bricks. Car dealers are going to fail ( very soon ) 3 very large empoyers ( largest in the area ) are looking at laying off 20 to 40% of the workforce this next few months. Mom and pop shops and big box stores ( in DG county ) have seen spending dropping 50 to 60% in the last 2 months straight. Counties such as WY and LV have seen spending rise with plans to cut taxes and help businesses with breaks. E J, we are headed for a bad bad time , and this leadership leadeing us is taking us down hard with the plan in place. They dont know what is happening, nor do they care about anything other than making a name for themselves, good or bad, and this budget is for the bad.

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