posted on Jul, 15 2011 @ 09:12 AM
I agree the question is framed in the same simplistic way that it is in the mass media. It allows no room for common sense or compromise. I starred
St. Udio's post above because I mostly agree.
A) Tax policy: a simplified tax code with most loopholes removed would be better than the thousands of pages of rules and deductions we have now.
Conservatives (who I tend to agree with more than Liberals) are going to hate this thought, but I have no problems with a massively punitive
inheritance tax. I have no problems with someone who either through hard work, creative genius, or other legal means becomes wealthy and wishes to
enjoy the fruits of their labors. I have huge problems with those in the lucky sperm club. A punitive inheritance tax prevents the formation of
dynastic wealth, gives incentive to spend instead of horde wealth to pass on, and forces those who benefit from the system we have repay the system
that allowed them to prosper ( by enforcing contracts, patents, and trademarks). Such an inheritance tax should have some pretty large deductions for
capital producing property like farms, milling machines and other capital equipment so that farmers and small business owners may pass on the ability
to produce wealth to their heirs, but not a stack that allow such heirs to simply live off of dividends and interest.
B)Social Service Programs: Social Security (SSI not SSDI) is a program that can probably be fixed with minor tweeks like increasing the age to draw
(people do live longer), taxing all wages not the current limit of around $107,000, and putting a cap on benefits. Welfare and SSDI in my experience
with people on them are rife with fraud and an entitlement mentality amongst people who could work at something but choose not to. If those programs
are to continue, the sanctions for fraud (mainly in SSDI) should be increased and those receiving benefits should be audited regularly. A lifetime
limit to amounts received from welfare would be a good start and tying receipt of welfare to job training, education or hell menial work for some
number of hours every week would be a good start. Food stamps should be limited to fresh fruits, veggies, meats, and the lowest cost items in the
grocery store for everything else. Medicare and medicaid are not fixable or sustainable without complete overhaul of the health care system in the US
and without that anything done to attempt fix them are pissing into the wind.
Sorry I couldn't give a simple answer OP, but such choices as you presented are part of the problems we face in this country. Such choices do little
at solving the complex problems we face and work only to divide the populace into two camps which is exactly what the demagogues on either side
desire.Government cannot and does not generate prosperity it may only take from one and give to another. Government does have an impact on the
conditions necessary for prosperity. One can desire both some form of social safety net and and a tax environment that is not burdensome on those that
risk their capital to produce and generate wealth. A compromise that helps those unable (not unwilling) to help themselves but does not destroy the
desire to prosper from those that are able to generate wealth is what we need. Rigid ideology on both sides of the argument does nothing but gridlock
the system into where we are now, and that I think we both agree is not sustainable.