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Author Topic: Pope Benedict Peace Message Calls For Wealth Redistribution  (Read 3555 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #90 on: December 18, 2011, 10:22:36 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
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« Reply #91 on: December 18, 2011, 10:24:26 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

This post is like the mirror image of my earlier one with sides of politics reversed. I think there's a lesson in that, somewhere.
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« Reply #92 on: December 18, 2011, 10:28:28 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
I response could be misconstrued as politics outside the political forum.
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« Reply #93 on: December 18, 2011, 10:30:43 PM »

 Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.

Why would we consider the payment of tax as charity or compulsory charity?

Taxation money is used to build roads for the population with cars to drive on, to educate young people, to support the elderly, the poor and the unemployed.  Are the roads and the schools seen as an act of charity?  Are these not the services we expect our government to provide for the population out of tax money?
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« Reply #94 on: December 18, 2011, 10:38:49 PM »

 Anything given out of compulsion is not charity.

Why would we consider the payment of tax as charity or compulsory charity?

Taxation money is used to build roads for the population with cars to drive on, to educate young people, to support the elderly, the poor and the unemployed.  Are the roads and the schools seen as an act of charity?  Are these not the services we expect our government to provide for the population out of tax money?
Taxation is also what the politicians and the well connected line their pockets with, Father.

To take one topic, schools as a responsibility of the government is relatively a new concept.  In the US, we have the situation where people pay the tax for the school system on top of paying tuition to send their children to parochial or private schools.
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« Reply #95 on: December 18, 2011, 10:51:36 PM »

(I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.)

In reality, the Christan countries of the Western  world (but not the US?) use taxation for social welfare needs ("redistribution of wealth" in this context.)   Is there a spirit of resentment in those countries among the rich and influential?
I don't know. You tell me.

You wrote: "since such taking engenders a spirit of resentment.."

I can say of New Zealand where I have lived these last 65 years that it does not engender a spirit of resentment.  People are agreed that part of their taxation is used for education and for the health system.  They are reasonably content that some of it is used for the unemployed -  employers and government believe that a 7% unemployment rate is ideal for a successful economy.  So no, "redistribution of wealth" to the needy is not resented.

On what countries are you basing your statement?


I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

Now I notice that you're arguing that some taxation for purposes other than gifts to the poor is necessary, and that you're defining "needy" to include needs other than poverty. I don't have a problem with that, and I'm sure very few people will have a problem with that. Government does provide some important services, and those services do cost money. How's the government going to get that money except through taxation? What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.
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« Reply #96 on: December 18, 2011, 11:09:08 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

Factor in the EIC and there may well be some families who break even or come out ahead when looking at all taxes paid versus what they get back in their refund.
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« Reply #97 on: December 18, 2011, 11:22:42 PM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.

Factor in the EIC and there may well be some families who break even or come out ahead when looking at all taxes paid versus what they get back in their refund.
No doubt about it.  I haven't had a cogent argument of how someone who doesn't pay taxes gets a tax refund (or that extra check that was sent out a few years back).
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« Reply #98 on: December 19, 2011, 12:14:44 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes. And while there is nothing to prevent a man becoming immensely rich there is, thank God, a government policy which protects a man from becoming obscenely poor.  In other words we have deliberately chosen to deeply embed Christian principles in New Zealand's social and political structures.  We would see this as a better and more equitable system than haphazard assistance from kindly neighbours or local parishes and synagogues or companies like the Chrysler Corporation.
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« Reply #99 on: December 19, 2011, 01:23:33 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.
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« Reply #100 on: December 19, 2011, 01:43:24 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
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« Reply #101 on: December 19, 2011, 01:46:15 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?
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« Reply #102 on: December 19, 2011, 01:50:19 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.
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« Reply #103 on: December 19, 2011, 02:11:34 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?


Ummmm.....I was hoping to come across as being not quite this inflammatory in my post.
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« Reply #104 on: December 19, 2011, 02:16:01 AM »



Tell us about the last one you ran into.


Aid for the care of HIV/AIDS victims in Orthodox communities from African communities to central Europe, Romania in particular but I don't have a reference at hand.

Also money for the Orthodox Church in Cyprus.

That's interesting, and very laudable.  One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.  Yes, it is true that the Catholic Church does a lot of good things for a lot of people, including Orthodox people.  Perhaps partly because the Catholic Church is such a vast institution with many diverse faces and motives, it is not surprising to see that at times its right hand really does not know what its left hand is doing.  Not that the Roman Church has a monopoly on this kind of behaviour, by any means, but I've also "run into" Catholic institutions employing very Machiavellian strategies in their dealings with others.  For this reason, the "Catholic knight in shining armour" position you champion in some of your posts here strikes me as being either somewhat disingenuous or naive, or at the very least extremely one-sided.    
Like this?


Ummmm.....I was hoping to come across as being not quite this inflammatory in my post.

Must be the clash between Arab understatement and British (>Canadian) intemperance.
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« Reply #105 on: December 19, 2011, 02:28:58 AM »

^ Undoubtedly.
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« Reply #106 on: December 19, 2011, 03:17:23 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.
I suppose one could question whether your Kiwi culture is based as solidly on Christian principles as you seem to think it is.
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« Reply #107 on: December 19, 2011, 03:49:51 AM »

One that I've "run into" involves giving Orthodox children in parts of the Middle East a free education.....just as long as they convert to Catholicism first.

Bob,

I'm certainly not about to hop on Mary's bandwagon, but I'd seriously like to see a source for any claim of this nature in anything approaching modern times - especially as regards the Middle East, where the excellent relations among the Eastern and Oriental Churches - both Catholic and Orthodox, are probably the best of anywhere in the world. None of the three Catholic Patriarchs of Antioch would countenance such and neither of the two Orthodox Patriarchs of Antioch would allow such to pass unnoticed. Educational resources are not infrequently shared among these Churches, as are social service and other charitable resources. The Middle East, whatever else one can say about it, is an example - on a daily basis - of collegiality, in which the concerned hierarchy puts the needs of the extended body of Christian faithful first, not body counts.

Your statement does not fly!

Many years,

Neil
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« Reply #108 on: December 19, 2011, 04:37:28 AM »

I think you misunderstand my statement, which is largely because I didn't make my statement clear enough.  I just don't believe it charitable for the government to take from the rich so she can give to the poor, since such taking for the purpose of giving the money to the poor engenders a spirit of resentment, not a spirit of cheerful generosity.

I can only repeat that my experience in my own country which has a comprehensive social welfare system  is that no spirit of resentment is engendered.    Different factors at work in the USA may generate resentment?
Quote


What I'm arguing against is taxation for the sole purpose of redistributing the money to the poor.

I would argue the opposite - that a Christian country has an obligation to care for the poor and those who are vulnerable whether through sickness or unemployment.

Just to briefly restate what I wrote earlier...   This country, and many Commonwealth countries, is orientated towards the common weal. We see the duty of Government as primarily that of managing the country for the common good of the entire populace. In order to achieve this common weal we cheerfully hand over our taxes.
In which case, we're probably much closer to agreeing on this issue than you may think, for I have argued that if the rich want to give generously and without compulsion, then they should be encouraged to do so. If your system of taxation is based on that sense of free will giving, then that's something to be commended. However, my experience is that people don't like paying taxes and think of it as compulsion. In this culture, distrust of government is virtually written into the Constitution, and taking money from the rich in order to give it to the poor is often thought little more than robbery.

Peter, I can certainly not getting at you but I cannot avoid the feeling that a society which shies away from assisting its poor is not a society based on Christian principles. And that assistance  needs to be comprehensive, organised, equitable and nationwide.  Entrusting it to the well-meaning but capricious efforts of neighbours and friends, church groups and mosques just won't work effectively in delivering sustained assistance as needed.

I suppose one could question whether your Kiwi culture is based as solidly on Christian principles as you seem to think it is.

Our law and our social institutions still are, but..... like all the Western world we are seeing what was once a pervading Christian culture in the years up until the 1970s eroded by secularism, and also by immigration from non-Christian areas of the world, the Muslim countries, China, and Asia generally.  In Auckland, our largest city,  41% do not have English as their first language.  This has happened in the last 20 years.  

As I wrote earlier.....

"Now as Church and State drift further apart it remains to be seen if that
partnership will continue but I still argue that we in New Zealand (and
perhaps slightly less now in the UK) enjoy a culture where people have
invested into the state the outworking of its Christian principles(getting
more and more diluted of course but still there) as the basis of its law and
care for its citizens."
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« Reply #109 on: December 19, 2011, 06:24:01 AM »

I am locking this thread until the mod team reviews it.  I already warned one poster because he was political.  I must go through all posts and figure out who crossed the line and then apply modertorial action.  This was about the pope not about taxation and politics -username! section moderator[color/]
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« Reply #110 on: December 19, 2011, 08:45:15 AM »

Did you seriously just quote Margaret Thatcher?

Me? Peter?
I was referring to Isa. My posts come in late due to being on moderation.

I was shaking my head in disbelief.
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“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

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« Reply #111 on: December 19, 2011, 08:45:15 AM »

The reason that 49% of people in the U.S. do not pay the federal income tax, Federal Income Cap Assesment (FICA), is because they can't- their income is not high enough for them to qualify. It's the same reason I don't own a house: I can't afford one.

However, everyone pays sales tax, and almost all states charge state tax; there are plenty of other taxes as well, including city taxes, depending on where you live. Local counties assess property taxes.

So please don't try this ridiculous right-wing talk radio notion of conflating lack of payment of the FICA tax with not paying any taxes. It's bull.
Every job I had, from the lowest paying job on Earth to now I always paid income tax. But once I moved into a different tax bracket, my return was not so great so I started doing exemptions to get out of paying the govnt too much of my own money.
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“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan
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