
"In the 13 months I've been in the Senate, it has become apparent to me the single thing that Democrats hate and fear the most  and that is when they're forced to tell the truth. It makes their heads explode. An awful lot of the Democrats wanted exactly what George W. Bush wanted, exactly what John Boehner wanted, exactly what Mitch McConnell wanted, which is to stop the raising of the debt ceiling, but they wanted to be able to tell what they view as their foolish, gullible constituents back home they didn't do it."


05072012, 04:55 PM  


If you disagree with the following statement: Unless you drastically change the distribution of the tax burden between the 99% and 1% groups, roughly half of any new revenues (only desperate snobbish not so intelligent people would claim new revenues might/could mean reduction in revenues) must come from the top 1%.Then tells if the top 1% share would be less or more than half? But you would not. Either you are incapable of comprehending my point and by now you are too embarrassed to admit that, or you are so intellectually dishonest that would be willing to look inept rather than acknowledging an obvious indisputable simple mathematical fact. 


In the example that I gave, the 1% would be paying more. Very obviously. What? You think that I was trying to slip that by you or that I don't understand that? lol! If I was trying to be "intellectually dishonest" then I wouldn't have provided the example to begin with. Once again, you need to condition your statement accordingly. You don't seem to understand that I don't care that it shows that the 1% would pay more as long as it proves your statement false as "an obvious indisputable simple mathematical fact." I have no particular ideological investment or interest beyond that. I'll let your own comments speak as far as that goes in your case. The comment regarding "new" revenues was not related to higher or lower. It was simply an aside to note that there's a distinction between a revenue need that exists and increases versus new revenue needs. Taking it to the real world for a moment, the extent and magnitude between the two can be substantial. For example, between relatively steadystate annual increases to a base budget versus a major new program that adds $1 trillion to the overall need for revenue. In any case, not of any particular significance to the argument. Your socalled "simple mathematical fact" presupposes many conditions that you're not acknowledging which take it away from being such. In the same way, as I pointed out in some of my earlier posts, there are numerous other considerations that alter the practical reality which, when noted, you then want to wave away by taking your statement back to being true at the abstract level. Here's a novel idea... Rather than spending so much effort in attempting to "catch me" and finding some hidden motives in my posts, why don't you redirect toward making in a clear and concise fashion whatever actual point it is that you want to make. A radical concept for the Podium I appreciate... Last edited by Mike A.; 05072012 at 06:53 PM.. 


And your explanation regarding "new" in "new revenues" amounts to a difference with no distinction. I never mentioned "new program". That is on the expenditure side. In a budget as big as the US, no matter the year, you always have programs that disappear and some that are new. But if you want to nitpick this to death, fine. Sub "increased revenues" for "new revenues". 


As I noted earlier, the mistake that you're making is that you're considering the potential contribution by the top 1% to be unbounded. It's not. There is some mathematical (and more relevant, practical) upper limit to the contribution that can be made by what is, by definition at 1%, a very small sliver in terms of numbers within the overall total. Even though an individual unit comprising this group is very large on a comparative basis versus a similar unit at say the 20 percentile, it still is very, very small relative to the size of the total "pie." That is, while $1 million/year in income for a "rich" taxpayer puts them in the 1% and is a lot of money relative to $30,000/year, even 50% of that taxpayer's income (a rate higher than realworld) is only $500,000 or ~0.0000167 of a ~$3 trillion required revenue "pie." In addition, there is not some uniform distribution of values comprising the top 1%. Rather it's a very wide range and the highest potential contribution for each unit is further independently bounded. That is, the values range from, using abstract numbers for simplicity, say $100 million to $1 million and only some percentage of each unit can be contributed to the total of the group. The units function independently within a whole, not as a whole, so you cannot, for example, grab all of the $100 million units to increase the total contribution of the group. The potential resources available for contribution always are limited to N% from each whatever N may be. At the same time, the overall revenue requirement "pie" is not practically bounded in the same way. It can grow to infinite levels given that it is not restricted by available resources. In fact, it can run into a net negative position versus available resources (i.e., a deficit). The above being the case, at some point it's quite easy to simply outrun the highest potential contribution of the top 1% group toward the overall "pie." If you run an unbounded, limitless output that continues to increase against a resourcebound input orders of magnitude smaller in size, then you will quickly reach the point where the input values individually and in the aggregate can no longer support 50% of an increase in the size of the unbounded number. From that point forward, in order to keep up you'd need to incrementally expand the range of the input variable to increase the size of the group to incorporate a larger base of resources to draw upon (e.g, expand the base for the input side to 2%). At some point you can at least theoretically outrun 100% of the total. You can prove this mathematically quite easily by setting up a series approximating the same orders of magnitude for the bounded and unbounded variables and gradually increasing the unbounded at some given rate. Regardless how you set the rate, eventually you will reach the point where the increase in the unbounded number exceeds 50% of the bounded number. You can sit down and calculate this out if you want but even you should understand that this is inherently true. Thus, your "simple mathematical fact" again fails. In fact, as I said, it only works if you impose practical conditions on both sides of the equation. Now at a practical level you can go pull source numbers for what the 1% represents in terms of incomes, what the distribution is within that group, assume some tax rates, find the value for the required contribution at some projected rate, factor in whatever changes in behavior happen at given rates, etc., etc. If you want to do so to prove your case at a practical level, then knock yourself out. Or you could simply cut to the chase and rely on a documented source favorable to the other side of the argument representing a best case which can be assumed to factor in all of those variables granting the benefit of the doubt. As I did by using the Obama budget earlier which demonstrates that there's not enough potential money which at a practical level can be extracted from the top 1% to do as you suggest. This is evidenced by the need as reflected in this budget to expand the group to the ~2% $250K/year level in order to cover required revenues as they stand now. Even in that case, the system runs at a netnegative position with +$1 trillion deficits increasing into the foreseeable future. In order to keep up even with current requirements, the base needs to be expanded which then alters the relative burden in your ideal model to the relative disadvantage of the 99% group (i.e, to 2% paying 50%, 5% paying 50%, etc.). So, evidence based on even a source favorable to your case suggests that at a practical level your "simple mathematical fact" also fails.



All growth depends upon activity. There is no development physically or intellectually without effort, and effort means work. â€” Calvin Coolidge
"Under Barack Obama, the only 'change' is that 'hope' is hard to find"  Marco Rubio 


Let's take politics out of this. Say there are two university systems in this city. A singlecampus comprehensive university and 9 community colleges. The university icare ferried to as top 10% and the community colleges are referred to as the bottom 90%. Say the present higher education budget of 10 millin is divided between the university and the community college system equally. Each get 5 million. Now say the gov is considering to add 1 million to the education budget. Then a councilman amends the proposal saying that the new revenue should be divided such that the relative share between the university and the community colleges would not change. The amedment passes. So the simple undisputable mathematical question is how much of a revenue boost does each entity get? And the simple undisputable mathematical answer is 0.5 mil each. Now go ahead and dispute the indisputable. You are good at it. Or write another wall of text response to appear that you are saying something while in reality you are saying nothing. 


Obviously, it holds true for some conditions. If you want to modify your statement to reflect such conditions, then that's fine. However, as I noted earlier, that presupposes some specific limitations and takes it from an "indisputable mathematical fact" to simply a conditional statement dependent on various practical considerations. At that point, you need to recognize all other practical aspects which may also affect the outcome, not just those that you want to use based on an obvious ideology. In the case of your example above, the operative condition being "...a councilman amends the proposal saying that the new revenue should be divided such that the relative share between the university and the community colleges would not change." That is not a mathematical requirement. That's an externally imposed practical condition. Even as a practical example there is no equivalent natural requirement in the case of the relative distribution of tax burden so it's not even a very good example. 


If debate was a practice, I would charge you with malpractice. Look at the below statement that I have repeated a zillion times: Unless you drastically change the distribution of the tax burden between the 99% and 1% groups, roughly half of any new revenues (only desperate snobbish not so intelligent people would claim new revenues might/could mean reduction in revenues) must come from the top 1%.What do you think the red part meant if not an "an externally imposed practical condition"? I now know better as not to let you waste too much of my time in the future. 

Can't believe I'm saying this, but I agree with Hannity. Everyone should pay the same flat % tax, regardless of income. Consider.
1% tax. You make $100 a check, you keep $99. You make $1000 a check, you keep $990, and so on. How is that unfair? The rich should pay more money in taxes (because they make more) but they shouldn't have to pay a higher or lower percentage than the poor. Everyone should pay the same rate. It's just like paying sales tax. Sales tax doesn't magically adjust because you're rich or poor. Everyone pays the same % of sales tax. The only thing that changes is the amount of money based on how much you spend. Last edited by bridgeburner; 05082012 at 02:44 PM.. No matter how helpful the feature, how easy it is to disable, or how good your intentions, someone somewhere will hate it and think you're a monster for implementing it. Anonymous Developer



I demonstrated the case where a small increase to revenue requirements does not require "drastically chang[ing] the distribution of the tax burden between the 99% and 1% groups... must come from the top 1%." A small increase could be absorbed at either end without any drastic change in the relative burden. I demonstrated why it's mathematically impossible for "...roughly half of any new revenues must come from the top 1%" in the case that you outrun the available resources of the 1% group. Your statement that it is a "simple indisputable mathematical fact" is false. I noted the conditional limitations only to distinguish such from mathematical requirements given your continued insistence that your statement is a *mathematical* fact. Even assuming the conditions that you have imposed it remains false. 


If half of present taxes are paid by the top 1% and if we want to keep the distribution of the burden of taxes between the top 1% and bottom 99% the same, then half of the new revenues must come from the top 1%. If you agree with the above, then show me the math that says increasing taxes on the to 1% result on amount that are "a drop in the bucket." Because if you agree with the above then you must agree that such amounts is one half of the amount if we increased taxes on all. Here is another simple indisputable mathematical fact. No matter how much you reduce expenditure, one half of every dollar to pay down the debt (debt and not the deficit) must come from the top 1%, unless you want to shift the burden. Those who say taxing the super rich does not produce appreciable revenues are dastardly liars or incompetent fools. 





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