Posts tagged taxation
Central Banks: The True Centers of Political Power
Mises Institute: Central banks keep increasing the money supply, and yet it looks like there’s still confidence in those fiat currencies.
Thorsten Polleit: Indeed. Policymakers obviously succeeded in taking panic out of the markets and, at the same time, creating the impression that their actions would “rescue” the economies without causing inflation. Their propaganda turns out to be rather successful.
MI: The strategy that the central banks have been using in recent years appears to be working so far.
Polleit: It clearly shows how far central banks’ manipulations can go to uphold the fiat money regime, which is actually a “monetary Ponzi game.” However, one should be aware of the fact that without severe market manipulations such as the suppressing of interest rates to basically zero, and the printing of new money for propping up ailing banks and governments, the fiat money system would presumably have collapsed already.
MI: So if the current strategy fails, what will happen?
Polleit: The critical issue is the demand for fiat money. If people are no longer willing to demand the rising supply of currency, the fiat money system starts unraveling. Treating devalued currency like a hot potato, people would try to exchange their fiat currency against non-fiat money assets. In this process, commodity prices would go up and the purchasing power of money go down. The extreme outcome of this process is hyperinflation: the heavy debasement or even an outright destruction of fiat money.
MI: Back in 2008 and 2009, there were fears of a wider collapse, but that never materialized. Why is this?
Polleit: I could imagine that back then many investors had ignored the fact that in an unfettered fiat money regime, central banks can provide governments and commercial banks with any amount of newly created fiat money, putting them in a position to service their debt in full. This is exactly what they did: “Default panic” was printed away by central banks. This was also the reason why the gold price fell from its all-time high of 1,900 US$ per ounce to currently around 1,300 US$ per ounce.
MI: So you still expect serious inflation?
Polleit: I sure do. Inflation will be one among other measures through which governments will try to get rid of excessive debt. You see, the fiat money regime has brought about a situation in which many borrowers — in particular governments and banks — are no longer in a position to pay down their debt. In other words: The damage has been done, the only question is: who is going to pay for it?
MI: So who is going to pay?
Polleit: Governments and banks will presumably employ higher taxation, confiscation, suspending payments on outstanding debt and, of course, inflation through money printing. One thing should be certain: holders of government and bank debt will be on the losing end. Either they will suffer from not getting back their money or from getting back just inflated money.
MI: The economies — be it the US, China, or even the Euro Zone — appear to be recovering at the moment and we’re told this means the crisis is over.
Polleit: The latest set of improving data is at best indicative of an artificial and eventually unsustainable economic process. It has actually been set into motion by highly distorted interest rates and a new round of fiat money injection. Malinvestment is on the rise again. It is just a question of time until this so-called “upswing” will turn into yet another “bust.” Fiat money creation has caused the malaise. Creating even more fiat money won’t solve the problems. It will make them even worse.
MI: What do you expect central banks to do going forward?
Polleit: Central banks have been captured by commercial and investment banking interests. I would assume that they will do more of the same: manipulating markets first and foremost by suppressing interest rates and printing new money to keep banks and the financial industry afloat.
With central banks running wild, we’ll be moving toward even more severe “boom-and-bust” cycles, even bigger government, less freedom and liberty, a distribution of income and wealth which is increasingly at odds with true market forces.
Central banks will become the real centers of political power. You could even say they are on the way to assuming the role of a “Politburo.” Central banks will effectively decide who is going to get credit at what conditions. They will decide which governments, which banks, and which kind of business sectors and companies will flourish or go under. The truth is that if the fiat money regime is not brought to an end — either by political will or by economic collapse — the economies will end up in a kind of socialist-totalitarian dead-end. But I tend to be optimistic: namely, that the fiat money scheme will break down before such a situation is reached.
MI: If not fiat money, then what?
Polleit: Gold is the ultimate means of payment. Everybody should own some gold. Under current conditions the gold price should be trading between $1,600 and $1,800 right now. At the same time, one would still need to earn an income stream, and by owning productive capital the investor may also protect himself to some extent from government interference: Even cold-blooded socialists know that the nationalization of the means of production means “killing the cow you would like to milk.” That said, owners of productive capital may suffer from higher profit taxation, but not outright expropriation.
About the Author:
Thorsten Polleit is chief economist of the precious-metals firm Degussa Goldhandel GmbH. He is also an honorary professor at the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management. He is an adjunct scholar of the Ludwig von Mises Institute and was awarded the 2012 O.P. Alford III Prize in Libertarian Scholarship. His website is www.Thorsten-Polleit.com. Send him mail.
Image credit: https://mises.org
Glenn Jacobs (WWE Wrestler Kane) Talks Libertarianism, and His Heroes
Published by TomWoodsTV
Tom Woods interviews Tennessean and WWE wrestler (Kane) Glenn Jacobs regarding the philosophy of Libertarianism, personal freedom and economic liberty.
Posted by Robert Wenzel
The Yin and Yang of Government Power
One of the areas where government would like to have absolute control is in the area of money creation. By having control of money creation, the government can, of course, control a monetary spigot that allows it to spend well beyond its ability to the raise funds via taxation and borrowing.
That said, it is instructive to understand the many ways the free market is attempting to circumvent government monopoly of money control. It is an object lesson in understanding that government is not all powerful and that there is a yin and yang to government power. At times, there can be a major jump in government power in a sector, but, over time, a counter response from the free market can occur that is difficult for the government to understand and defeat. Below is an important TED talk delivered by Paul Kemp-Robertson. He discusses the many points of free market responses to government money. He is a little weak in understanding completely how and why these currencies are emerging and doesn’t seem to understand their emergence in relation to Ludwig von Mises’ Regression Theorem, but it is a solid tour of the early-stage free market counter punch to government money.
Taken with a wide spectrum view, it is a great sign of hope that shows how free markets can emerge to counter government power.
Follow more of Robert’s posts here.
Fed Czars go to War – Chuck Morse
Published by NextNewsNetwork
For what may be the first time in the 100-year history of the Federal Reserve System, two candidates are publicly contending to replace the Fed’s outgoing chairman, Ben Bernanke.
Janet Yellen, vice chairwoman of the Fed’s Board of Governors, is said to be locked in a dead heat with Larry Summers, former President of Harvard and a former high-ranking economic adviser to Presidents Clinton and Obama.
As is the case in electoral politics, the contest between Yellen and Summers has included dirty campaigning — with supporters of Yellen accusing Summers of sexist behavior as Harvard President. They also point out that Mr. Obama would make history by appointing Yellen to be the Fed’s first female chairman.
In substantive terms, there’s not much difference between Yellen and Summers. Both of them support the Keynesian model of economics in which debt-driven government spending is seen as the key to expanding the economy.
During the 1990s, Summers played a key role in creating the real estate and mortgage bubble and the huge derivatives market that grew out of it — all of which led to the financial panic of 2008 and the ongoing recession.
Yellen, for her part, believes that Bernanke’s energetic expansion of money and credit has been inadequate. If she is appointed as Fed chairman, Yellen might well inaugurate an era of hyperinflation.
The Fed Chairman has more power over the U.S. economy — indeed, the world economy — than either the president or the Congress. Why is this so? Why does the Federal Reserve exist, and are we stuck with it? We’ll discuss this today with radio host and economic analyst Chuck Morse.
In addition to hosting the nationally syndicated “Chuck Morse Speaks” program on the IRN/USA Radio Network, Chuck has written two books — The Art and Science of American Money, and The Socialist Bible. He is also a columnist whose work has appeared in the Boston Globe, the Washington Times, WorldNetDaily, and numerous other publications.
Spotted on: http://www.dailypaul.com
H/T to my friend Judy Morris
Ben Swann’s Liberty is Rising Truth in Media Project
I want to begin by saying thank you for signing up for this email list and for your incredible support of my work with Reality Check and Full Disclosure over the past 2 years.
As promised, you are now the first to hear in detail about my- actually our- next step. Beginning next week on Monday, June 10, we will officially launch the “Liberty Is Rising Truth in Media Project” on Kickstarter. As I have told you, this is the most involved and meaningful project I have ever been involved in and it is not something I can do on my own.
The “Liberty is Rising Truth in Media Project” is a 3 step process:
Inform, Engage, Activate:
Step 1: INFORM
The first step of this project and the primary use of Kickstarter is to create high-end, high-quality Reality Check style segments that can be presented to the public via streaming content sites such as Netflix, Hulu, Spotify, or devices such as Roku and BenSwann.com. Our goal is to produce 100 high quality five to six minute shows and by launching this project independently, the restrictions on subject matter by corporate bosses will not be an issue.
Why do the videos need to be so high quality? Simple, we need to spread this message as far out as we can. Like it or not, we live in a very media-savvy culture and if the public at large is to take this kind of journalism seriously, they need to be able to hear and see it in a way that is deemed credible. You can watch network news programming all day and never hear anything of substance but it sure looks pretty. If we are to educate and inform the public on issues of war, the drug war, monetary policy, drone strikes, the NDAA, CAFR, crony capitalism, etc… it MUST be done in the style and format generations of Americans have been trained to accept as “professional”.
The films will be distributed via multiple platforms. First, we continue to share new content virally via Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, BenSwann.com, and continue to allow alternative media blog sites to use our films without charge and embed them, as long as they are shown in their entirety. This is important because we want as many people exposed to our journalism as possible.
We will be rolling out a highly interactive, informative website that will include all Full Disclosure episodes, a forum, Ben Swann podcasts, and a mobile app.
Also, as I mentioned, we are going to attempt to spread these films into new arenas such as streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu, and Spotify. Again, the goal is to engage the largest audience possible.
Step 2: ENGAGE
Each of us must impact our own circle of influence.
We are currently building out a multi-faceted platform of engagement where you and I will work together to take single issues and impact public opinion. This platform will contain resources like stats, infographics, archived articles, and other educational materials that will be available to download or share.
This platform will work directly with college student groups like Young Americans for Liberty, Young Republicans, Young Democrats and politically independent groups, giving students hard facts and data to share with peers and teaching them how to hold information sessions on campus.
We will work with journalists across the country challenging them to engage in critical thinking and questioning of local, state and national leaders on issues of importance. We’ll equip them on how to challenge the status quo in their newsrooms and move beyond reading press releases.
Faith Based Communities:
We will engage faith-based communities (Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, etc) and challenge the acceptance of government control over their religious activities.
We will engage local and state lawmakers and challenge the over-reach, over taxation, and policing for profit that is taking place in every city and town in America.
We will engage those in the Tea Party movement who entered the movement for the right reasons, to protest over taxation and government control.
We will engage those in the Occupy movement who rightly protested the consolidation of wealth among a small group of people and who have created a crony capitalist system (that isn’t capitalism at all).
The goal is to help Americans escape the Left/Right paradigm of arguing with each other while politicians and big money run the nation and our lives. We desire to create unity among all these groups in the areas where we can agree. That happens when we are defined not by who we stand against, but what we stand for. It is not about Left vs. Right or Republican vs. Democrat… but Liberty vs. Tyranny.
You and I will go through this process together. Beyond just sharing the content, you will be instrumental to the gathering of information and the actual creation of that content. With your engagement we will be able to create public awareness and social willingness to drive change.
Step 3: ACTIVATE
The best part of this step is that the work you and I will have already done is key. Having forced important issues into the forefront of public awareness we will have already changed minds and that will allow action to be taken.
Through strategic partnerships with established political and student groups as well as individual experts in the fields or medicine, education, economics, security, drug policy etc. we will begin to crowd-source “change strategies”.
The end result of these strategies will include legal and legislative process for changing U.S. policy overseas and here at home. We will challenge lawmakers who continue to engage in hypocritical behavior and are unwilling to stand up for rule of law. As a long-term goal, we will eventually work with lawmakers to draft legislation to correct the nation’s trajectory. Dr. Ron Paul borrowed the words of Victor Hugo when he declared in 2008, “An idea whose time has come cannot be stopped by any army or any government.”
Ron Paul Said It Best:
I recently had the chance to interview Dr. Paul and we talked in depth about the changing media landscape. How has media changed for a man who has spent his entire life attempting to change the system?
“When I first started in politics in the 70′s, we basically had three major networks and they were very, very close together on philosophy…..But now the options are great…..Now the information is going out differently. It’s going out on handheld devices and computers and telephones and they can turn you on and off when they want. They have so many more choices.”
Dr. Paul then added:
I’m optimistic that things are going to do well and I’m optimistic because you’re (Ben Swann) involved in this fight with us.”
Again, I want to thank you for your support so far. As you can see this next step is a very ambitious project. There is risk here but I believe that every great movement in history has been accompanied by great challenge and risk.
Between now and June 10th, I need your help.
1. Please go sign up for this Facebook event for the project:
2. Please forward this email on to friends and family who you believe might want to be a part of this project.
3. Please share the new cover photo featured on my Facebook pages that can be found here.
There has never been a moment like this before in world history where a society has had this kind of collision of technology and information. This is our moment. I hope that next Monday, you will commit to helping me to shake the media landscape in America! I leave you with these words from a great patriot Samuel Adams who once proclaimed,
“It does not take a majority to prevail… but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.” - Samuel Adams
Should anyone be taxed over 100% of income? Happened to some in France for tax year 2011.
Vive le France? Well, one of the reasons there is less “vive” in France these days is because of asinine policies such as the one imposed by France’s current Socialist government which is highlighted below.
Eat the rich? See how many of the rich stick around to be eaten.
How on earth would a country ever turn itself around with this sort of economic mentality? The French are basically saying that they don’t want capital creation within their borders.
“…the exceptionally high level of taxation was due to a one-off levy last year on 2011 incomes for households with assets of more than 1.3 million euros ($1.67 million).
President Francois Hollande’s Socialist government imposed the tax surcharge last year, shortly after taking office, to offset the impact of a rebate scheme created by its conservative predecessor to cap an individual’s overall taxation at 50 percent of income.”
With a tax code that exceeds 72,000 pages in length and consumes more than six billion person hours per year to determine taxpayers’ taxable income, with an IRS that has become a feared law unto itself, and with a government that continues to extract more wealth from every taxpaying American every year, is it any wonder that April 15th is a day of dread in America? Social Security taxes and income taxes have dogged us all since their institution during the last century, and few politicians have been willing to address these ploys for what they are: theft.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry caused a firestorm among big-government types during the Republican presidential primaries last year when he called Social Security a Ponzi scheme. He was right. It’s been a scam from its inception, and it’s still a scam today.
When Social Security was established in 1935, it was intended to provide minimal financial assistance to those too old to work. It was also intended to cause voters to become dependent on Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Democrats. FDR copied the idea from a system established in Italy by Mussolini. The plan was to have certain workers and their employers make small contributions to a fund that would be held in trust for the workers by the government. At the time, the average life expectancy of Americans was 61 years of age, but Social Security didn’t kick in until age 65. Thus, the system was geared to take money from the average American worker that he would never see returned.
Over time, life expectancy grew and surpassed 65, the so-called trust fund was raided and spent, and the system was paying out more money than it was taking in — just like a Ponzi scheme. FDR called Social Security an insurance policy. In reality, it has become forced savings. However, the custodian of the funds — Congress — has stolen the savings and spent it. And the value of the savings has been diminished by inflation.
Today, the best one can hope to receive from Social Security is dollars with the buying power of 75 cents for every dollar contributed. That makes Social Security worse than a Ponzi scheme. You can get out of a Ponzi investment. You can’t get out of Social Security. Who would stay with a bank that returned only 75 percent of one’s savings?
The Constitution doesn’t permit the feds to steal your money. But steal, the feds do.
At one of last year’s Republican presidential debates, a young man asked the moderator to pose the following question to the candidates: “If I earn a dollar, how much of it am I entitled to keep?” The question was passed to one of the candidates, who punted, and then the moderator changed the topic. Only Congressman Ron Paul gave a serious post-debate answer to the young man’s question: “All of it.”
Every official foundational government document — from the Declaration of Independence to the U.S. Constitution to the oaths that everyone who works for the government takes — indicates that the government exists to work for us. The Declaration even proclaims that the government receives all of its powers from the consent of the governed. If you believe all this, as I do, then just as we don’t have the power to take our neighbor’s property and distribute it against his will, we lack the ability to give that power to the government. Stated differently, just as you lack the moral and legal ability to take my property, you cannot authorize the government to do so.
Here’s an example you’ve heard before. You’re sitting at home at night, and there’s a knock at the door. You open the door, and a guy with a gun pointed at you says: “Give me your money. I want to give it away to the less fortunate.” You think he’s dangerous and crazy, so you call the police. Then you find out he is the police, there to collect your taxes.
The framers of the Constitution understood this. For 150 years, the federal government was run by user fees and sales of government land and assessments to the states for services rendered. It rejected the Hamiltonian view that the feds could take whatever they wanted, and it followed the Jeffersonian first principle that the only moral commercial exchanges are those that are fully voluntary.
This worked well until the progressives took over the government in the first decade of the 20th century. They persuaded enough Americans to cause their state legislatures to ratify the Sixteenth Amendment, which was designed to tax the rich and redistribute wealth. They promised the American public that the income tax would never exceed 3 percent of income and would only apply to the top 3 percent of earners. How wrong — or deceptive — they were.
Yet, the imposition of a federal income tax is more than just taking from those who work and earn and giving to those who don’t. And it is more than just a spigot to fill the federal trough. At its base, it is a terrifying presumption. It presumes that we don’t really own our property. It accepts the Marxist notion that the state owns all the property and the state permits us to keep and use whatever it needs us to have so we won’t riot in the streets. And then it steals and uses whatever it can politically get away with. Do you believe this?
There are only three ways to acquire wealth in a free society. The inheritance model occurs when someone gives you wealth. The economic model occurs when you trade a skill, a talent, an asset, knowledge, sweat, energy or creativity to a willing buyer. And the mafia model occurs when a guy with a gun says: “Give me your money or else.”
Which model does the government use? Why do we put up with this?
Rep. Paul Broun Jr. of Georgia has introduced the “Free Competition in Currency Act of 2013″ in the 113th Congress. This bill contains the same provisions as bills previously introduced by former Congressman Ron Paul, which seek to repeal legal tender laws and prohibit taxation on certain coins and bullion.
The newly introduced bill H.R. 77 seeks to repeal Section 5103 or title 31, which states “United States coins and currency (including Federal reserve notes and circulating notes of Federal reserve banks and national banks) are legal tender for all debts, public charges, taxes, and dues. Foreign gold or silver coins are not legal tender for debts.” This would be replaced by “5103. [Repealed].”
The bill also provides that no tax may be imposed with the respect to the sale, exchange, or other disposition of any coin, medal, token, or gold, silver, platinum, palladium, or rhodium bullion, whether issued by a State, the United States, a foreign government, or any other person. Further, no state may asses any tax or fee any any currency or monetary instrument used in the transaction of interstate or foreign commerce which is subject to the enjoyment of legal tender status under article I, section 10 of the United States Constitution.
Finally, the bill would repeal superfluous related sections of the United States Code by striking Title 18, sections 486 and 489, which relate to uttering coins of gold, silver, or other metal and possessing likenesses of coins. These are treated as anti-counterfeiting statutes. It is provided that any prosecution under these sections shall abate, and any previous conviction under the sections shall be null and void.
After its introduction on January 3, 2013, H.R. 77 was referred to the Committee on Financial Services, in addition to the Committees on Ways and Means, and the Judiciary. The bill currently has no co-sponsors.
When introduced by Ron Paul in the 112th Congress, the Free Competition in Currency Act of 2011 garnered one co-sponsor and had hearings held by the Subcommittee on Domestic Monetary Policy and Technology. The bill was not voted on by the House.
Rep. Paul Broun Jr. has also reintroduced Ron Pauls’ legislation calling for an audit of the Federal Reserve. The bill H.R. 24 currently has five co-sponsors and has been referred to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, and in addition to the Committee on Financial Services.
Ron Paul’s “Audit the Fed” bill had passed the House in the last session of Congress 327-98 with 274 cosponsors. The Senate failed to act on the bill before the end of the 112th Congress.
In a statement included in a press release, Rep. Broun indicated his desire “to pick up right where Congressman Paul left off.”
Lew Rockwell appears on the Alex Jones show and discusses what’s next for the liberty movements fight against statism. At the beginning of the interview Lew tells us that Ron Paul has big plans for the liberty movement but cannot reveal them until he is out of congress. Lew says that Ron Paul will be more powerful now that he is out of politics.
Related Post: Lew Rockwell Owns the Gang of Overlords
By Tim Brown
As if things weren’t bad enough in California, lawmakers there not only have tried to be politically correct by passing a stupid “anti-Arizona” immigration bill, but now they are funding a high-speed rail line that connects Los Angeles to San Francisco.
According to the Big Brother mapper Google, the drive would take approximately six hours and 20 minutes to drive the 381.8 miles from LA to Shaky Town. Of course that would cost individuals two tanks of gas or maybe three to drive there and back. I’m sure most people are not commuting from LA to San Francisco on a daily basis in the first place. So why does California need to put a high-speed rail line in?
It’s to be “first.” That’s right this initial segment, proposed by lawmakers in California, will be the first dedicated high speed rail line in the nation.
While the Governor and the Obama administration are touting this as having to do with the economical growth of the state, the real issue is about being first and attributing such things to the person who is in office at the time.
According to the U. S. Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood, “No economy can grow faster than its transportation network allows. With highways between California cities congested and airspace at a premium, Californians desperately need an alternative.”
Democrat Governor Jerry Brown echoed LaHood’s comments, “The Legislature took bold action today that gets Californians back to work and puts California out in front once again.”
“Literally, this project means tens of thousands of jobs,” said Mark Kyle, director of government affairs for the Operating Engineers Local Union No. 3, which was among the bill’s supporters.
This same tired rhetoric was used in North Carolina too. Only in N.C. the issue was light-rail which was proposed by neo-con RINO Pat McCrory. It neither grew jobs, nor expanded the economy. It’s also one of the reasons the man lost to a Democrat, Bev Perdue, for the race for governor.