RE: Anti-Tax/Government Rhetoric.

You’ve heard a lot of it lately, people whining about paying their taxes.  And they’re right, I mean what did the government ever do for them?

I mean other than clean your water, make your food and medication safe, fight crime, put out fires before they spread to your home or business, educate your children, keep you from losing your money when your bank gets robbed, make airplanes and cars safer, keep people from starving, provide medical insurance to the elderly, provide for the permanently disabled, take care of displaced children, kept polio and malaria from taking root here for decades, provide disaster relief, fight terrorism, protect our borders from incursion, beat the nazis, irradicate smallpox, put a man on the moon, invented or laid the ground work for the invention of calculators, computers, the internet, microwave ovens/dinners, memory foam, global telecommunications etc. 

But I mean aside from that, what GOOD thing has the GOVERNMENT ever done for US?

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About agnophilo

Nerd.
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61 Responses to RE: Anti-Tax/Government Rhetoric.

  1. agnophilo says:

    @AOK4WAY – Depends what we’re talking about.  Like with the police, I have no problem with the private sector making the uniforms, equipment, squad cars, building etc, but at the end of the day I don’t want some profit-oriented bean-counter deciding whether the detectives really need an expensive DNA test in my wife’s rape case to convince a jury Bob did it.Fuck that sideways.

  2. SKANLYN says:

    @agnophilo – I didn’t say anarchy would be wonderful and if you were trying to make a point about how we need a government to provide those services you reference, you poorly communicated it. Instead it reads as “shut the fuck up” to anyone who dares question whether it is necessary for the government to take as much of our money as they do. It is clearly not feasible for individual citizens to buy their own missiles, build their own water filtration plants, and hire a personal fireman and cop and we do need the government to provide those sorts of things. They should be accountable, however, to the citizens who are paying the bill and that means we have the right to speak up when we think it is too much.

  3. agnophilo says:

    @SKANLYN – So find ways to eliminate spending.  I’m all for criticizing the government, but I’m sick of the generic, mindless anti-government/tax whining I hear being stoked from pundits and politicians.

  4. The_ATM says:

    @SKANLYN – Yeah.  I am a college kid.. I guess.  But I get paid from defense appropriations for doing research.  The things I do now are largely the same as the things I would do in industry.@agnophilo – If you listen to some of the more reasonable voices comprising the tea party, you will find people bitching about the same mismanagement as I am.  so I hope your complaint here is not against them.  The government has responded like an impenetrably deaf ear.  So I hope we get new people voted in. 

  5. agnophilo says:

    @The_ATM – I wasn’t directing it at members of any party.  And the tea party is a bit of a mystery, the loons/bigots/extremists are the only ones that get play on tv generally, so I don’t know what the actual movement is like, and I don’t know if the media is defining the movement.  I imagine it’s a mixed bag though, lots of groups vying for control over the formation of the movement for totally different reasons and with totally different ideologies, but all under the label of conservativism.

  6. AOK4WAY says:

    @agnophilo – I’m with ya there too. I think law enforcement can be considered one of the activities government undertakes in it’s role as facilitator though. Providing vital services is an important role for govt to play, but I think we differ in what we consider vital services. Is it vital for the govt to track the body mass index of school age kids? Of course not! Is it vital that the govt redistribute wealth? Only in the most limited sense and in the most dire emergencies, in my opinion. I don’t think American workers should be made to labor at their jobs in order to make sure that people who won’t work can keep their cell phones and cable TV turned on. When did uncle sam (which is to say you and me) become a sugar daddy, ya know? Governmental wealth redistribution schemes invariably decline into vote buying, and we’re the ones stuck paying the bill for dirty politics.More and more, we’re seeing government pass legislation that flies in the face of the will of the majority of the American people, and that’s stirring up a lot of anger. They’re forcing an agenda down the throats of the majority. They’re being taxed, but their voices either aren’t being heard, or their voices are being ignored. Either way, it amounts to taxation without representation, and we all know where that can lead. We’ve all been taught that government is a servant rather than a ruler, but the folks in government seem to have forgotten that.

  7. agnophilo says:

    @AOK4WAY – “I’m with ya there too. I think law enforcement can be considered one of the activities government undertakes in it’s role as facilitator though. Providing vital services is an important role for govt to play, but I think we differ in what we consider vital services. Is it vital for the govt to track the body mass index of school age kids? Of course not!” Well since 7.8% of the US population is now diabetic due to our sugar intake and it’s the 7th most common cause of death, the argument could be made that yes it is literally vital.”Is it vital that the govt redistribute wealth?” I did a blog on the subject here some months ago which you might find interesting.”Only in the most limited sense and in the most dire emergencies, in my opinion. I don’t think American workers should be made to labor at their jobs in order to make sure that people who won’t work can keep their cell phones and cable TV turned on. When did uncle sam (which is to say you and me) become a sugar daddy, ya know?”  The only discretionary money I can think of that the government gives you is unemployment insurance, which you pay for while you’re employed.  Generally if you get assistance for rent, utilities or food they give you food stamps which you can only use to buy food or pay your utility company directly.  I was the son of an increasingly disabled parent who couldn’t get social security disability (for bullshit reasons, don’t get me started), so we had to get help a few times when I was growing up.  The government doesn’t just give you a wad of cash and say “have fun”.”Governmental wealth redistribution schemes invariably decline into vote buying, and we’re the ones stuck paying the bill for dirty politics.”The people getting rich off of government corruption are the corporations that get paid billions of dollars more than what their work is worth, not the homeless and the hungry.  You can look at the government helping poor people as “buying votes” all you want, but the fact is hardly any poor people vote at all.  And if making sure people aren’t starving to death is a sign of government corruption, then yay for that kind of corruption.”More and more, we’re seeing government pass legislation that flies in the face of the will of the majority of the American people, and that’s stirring up a lot of anger. They’re forcing an agenda down the throats of the majority. They’re being taxed, but their voices either aren’t being heard, or their voices are being ignored. Either way, it amounts to taxation without representation, and we all know where that can lead. We’ve all been taught that government is a servant rather than a ruler, but the folks in government seem to have forgotten that.”Were you listening to rush limbaugh, or bill oreilly or any of two dozen other pundits when you were writing that, because it’s nothing but their talking points.First of all, taxation without representation is not getting to vote for the people who set the tax rate.  What you have now is taxation WITH representation, which for the record was what the people in the actual tea party were after.  The people in this historically inept “tea party” are whining that they have what the original tea party protesters wanted and don’t know what to do with it.  It’s also stunningly hypocritical that their manufactured “outrage” wasn’t there for the last 8 years bush was massively deficit-spending and doing all manner of unseemly things.Second, their incoherent, misinformed voices are being heard.  They had a full year to give input on, debate about, attend townhall meetings etc on healthcare reform, to characterize that as shoving it down america’s throat and the government not listening is fucking retarded.  Exactly what else was the government supposed to do other than dismantle itself and hand power over to the mob?  And they didn’t “pay attention” primarily because the people demanding their attention were morons with absurd objections to legislation that were pumped into their living rooms by conservative pundits and supplied by corporate lobbyists like Betsy McCaughey.

  8. AOK4WAY says:

    How will monitoring the BMI of school aged children impact their sugar intake, friend? Will that cause irresponsible parents to become responsible? Would you propose that some instrument of coercion be created and exercised through the schools as well? Who needs to know a kid’s BMI to see that he or she is fat anyway?You know my friend, I see something in you that I see in me. You have an unswerving belief. Strangely enough, we’re only a couple degrees apart on a circle, 1 degree and 359 degrees. We both believe in justice and goodness and our mutual responsibility for each other. But I believe that want and need and hunger and poverty and crime and every other social ill can never be legislated, taxed, spent or governed away. Only love can accomplish that man.

  9. agnophilo says:

    @AOK4WAY –  “How will monitoring the BMI of school aged children impact their sugar intake, friend? Will that cause irresponsible parents to become responsible? Would you propose that some instrument of coercion be created and exercised through the schools as well? Who needs to know a kid’s BMI to see that he or she is fat anyway?”You seem to be arguing for the sake of arguing.  As if looking at a problem is a sin unless you’ve solved it already.  That is just ridiculous.”You know my friend, I see something in you that I see in me. You have an unswerving belief.” Not really.”Strangely enough, we’re only a couple degrees apart on a circle, 1 degree and 359 degrees.” Depending on what you mean there is no circle.”We both believe in justice and goodness and our mutual responsibility for each other.” Yes.”But I believe that want and need and hunger and poverty and crime and every other social ill can never be legislated, taxed, spent or governed away. Only love can accomplish that man.”No, I don’t think government is some magical thing that will solve all of our problems, I just think it is one means to fix some problems.  And what does love do, but compel us to help those less fortunate?  Why is doing that with tax dollars evil?If I felt no love I would propose we cut welfare programs and give billions upon billions to corporations and wage unnecessary and ill-planned wars designed for maximum corporate profit and cut the value of minimum wage in half over the last 40 years by never raising it enough to keep up with inflation.Sound familiar?

  10. AOK4WAY says:

    Not at all. I’m only asking you to explain to me how monitoring the BMI of school aged children is going to help reduce the incidence of childhood obesity or cut the sugar intake of obese kids. You made the association and I’m not clear on exactly how they relate or what good is supposed to come of it. I was just asking you to clarify.I’ve chosen my words carefully, so it isn’t fair of you to put words in my mouth. I never said that using tax dollars to help people in need is evil. I said it doesn’t do anything to solve the problem. If I haven’t said it already I’ll say it now… it exacerbates the problem and perpetuates a generational cycle of poverty.The government is a machine. It doesn’t love, and it doesn’t take into account what’s best for people. It crunches numbers and doles out checks to those who meet the standard criteria. It only treats the most obvious symptom of an underlying problem while ignoring the problem itself, and the problem isn’t going to be the same from individual to individual (and I don’t think anyone would argue that not being able to provide for yourself and your family is a problem).Love sometimes allows people to experience the consequences of their actions (or lack thereof) in order to impart wisdom and stimulate motivation to do better. Many of the people who receive public assistance checks would be better served if they were put in a position to work or starve. If that hurts someone’s pride, so be it. When you’re looking to someone else to feed and clothe your kids, your pride is nothing but a puff of air in a warm breeze. It’s nothing.I don’t know why you keep throwing Bush in my face man, I didn’t vote for him. I don’t defend his policies (especially now that he hasn’t been president for almost a year and a half! Sheesh)! Of course all that sounds familiar… it’s the same stuff I keep hearing from “liberals” whenever someone calls Obama’s policies into question. That’s one heck of an argument, my man – Bush brought the country to ruin, so why shouldn’t Obama finish the job? I just don’t get it. What’s so hard to understand? Bankruptcy is bad, m’kay, and that’s where this country is headed. If we’re evil in your mind for not wanting that to happen to our country, so be it. Who will be the evil one when your children are paying the price for all the debt that’s being run up right now? Not the Bush debt, the debt that’s mounting by billions per day? It’s your own kids’ future you’re letting them mortgage.

  11. The_ATM says:

    @agnophilo – Well, we can both hope the movement does not choose Palin as a leader.  I hope they choose Ron Paul.  I heard some polling that suggested the tea party was around half and half split between people that actually have conservative values like Ron Paul and ‘conservative victory’ people like Sarah Palin, who expresses her lack of firm ideology through a narrow, not principled expressions of nonsense.

Speak yer mind.

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