Editor,

Why do progressives seek to give more welfare money away and especially in a way that encourages single parent families?

The income of U.S. welfare recipients already exceeds Euro welfare states when U.S. welfare is counted as income. The United States already taxes the rich more than EU countries with the top 1% of U.S. earners paying 40% of all federal taxes. This means the rich in our country already pay for a substantial part of the almost $4 trillion in local, state and federal welfare payments to lower income people in our country.

Why impede U.S. economic output which exceeds Germany by 15% and France by 43% on a per capita GDP basis with more welfare spending? Why reduce Americans’ economic freedom, which exceeds EU countries by 25% as measured by domestic spending and why not provide a type of welfare that encourages two parent families which the Dems’ current bill does not do.

The answer seems to be that progressive politicians seek power by providing more free things. They favor growing government dependency over growing the private sector which is the primary source of jobs and incomes. Progressives will never convince Americans to accept 65% tax rates that would be needed to support Euro-style welfare.

Ed Kahl

Woodside

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(28) comments

Dirk van Ulden

Comparing the economies of the Northern EU and ours is like apples and oranges. Having just come back from the Netherlands, I need to conclude that their tax rate may be high, but they are getting a lot back for it. Virtually no crime, no homeless, beautiful freeways, and generally very organized and spotless. We are are getting hammered by multiple taxes and what do we see, particularly in California? I hate to say it, but Jorg is somewhat right, we can call them progressive, but what has our defunct system done for us lately??

edkahl

Scandinavian countries are small and homogeneous. They don't have racial issues to deal with and they don't have to spend money on defense because we provide it. What I'd like government to do for us is to not raise taxes so we'll have more to spend on what we want to spend it on. Government spending is necessary but should be minimized because it’s a sink hole of bureaucratic inefficiency and is used by politicians to raise political donations form those getting government larges.

Jorg

Ed, where on flat Earth do you get all your nonsense from? And don’t make us guess again!

Norway pays for its own defense budget, totaling over 7,5 Billion US dollars. While both countries are NATO members, there is close cooperation between Norway and the US, but no US contribution to the budget, except perhaps for equipment built in the US on Norwegian licenses that the US obviously pay for. Why don’t you check your fantasies before you toss out such certified nonsense? Google would be a good start for you.

Ray Fowler

Without the US sponsoring the Marshall Plan and NATO, locals in Oslo could be saluting each other today as comrades with vodka instead of sipping Akvavit in downtown bistros... and Putin would be vacationing in Lillehammer.

Jorg

My goodness, Ray, the kind of absurd nonsense you can toss out! You had to go some 70 years back in history to find the Marshall help, which was just as much in the long term interest of the US as for the war ravaged countries in Europe. Your vodka joke is sickening and unworthy of comment. You should be ashamed of yourself!

Ray Fowler

Once again, as Wilfredo said... predictable and evasive.

Without the US, the Russkies charge across the Fulda Gap then make a right turn to enjoy some Sursild in good ol' Norway. BTW... that wasn't 70 years ago, and... you're welcome.

Ray Fowler

Well, Jorg... I have persevered through some medical issues over the past five days and I'm afraid I will have to check out until some time later. Don't eat too many kippers...

Terence Y

Ray, I was wondering where you were. I assume all is well as it appears you’re up on current events and your sense of humor is apparent. Thanks for revving up the ol’ Jorg machine. I see you’ve got him on the run again. It seems Mr. Kahl is winning the flat earth prize this time and is barely leading you in the exclamation point derby. Perhaps when your energy returns, you can edge ahead of Mr. Kahl. Eat that Halloween candy in moderation.

edkahl

According to Google Norway's $7.5 bil in defense spending is a rounding error compared to US defense spending of $770 bil. The US spends 10% of GDP on defense while Norway only spends 1.9% of GDP which is 50% below NATO’s required 3.6%. Also according to Google Norway pays for a portion of its welfare spending with its fossil fuel production that supports its national wealth fund and with savings on its defense spending. But for this Norway would need higher taxes to support their welfare spending. This is Norway’s choice and is in no way intended to take away from Norway’s valiant defense against the Nazis in WW-II and it's support of Western countries.

Dirk van Ulden

Ed - you put your finger on it. Our government is a sink hole, and focusses on paying off campaign contributors instead of the general welfare of the citizens. That is probably the biggest difference between our corrupt system and what they have been able to sustain in Northern Europe. It is not the taxation level but what is done with the collected revenues. I don't believe that either political party is willing to make any changes in this FUBAR system.

Tafhdyd

Mr. Kahl,

You must be getting forgetful in your old age or you have selective memory like your fellow right wing friends. In the '60's the top tax rate was 91% for the top income bracket which was 200K for single filers, 1.5 million in todays dollars. How much did the millionaires actually pay in taxes back then? Probably about the same as now, next to nothing, compared to the middle and lower wage earners.

edkahl

I would agree that most taxes are paid by the middle class because it's by far the biggest tax base in any country. Joe Biden is wrong when he says the $4 tril he wants to spend will be paid for by taxes on the rich. The alt min tax was just supposed to be for the rich when it passed but it's now a middle class tax.

Jorg

Ed, you keep playing fast and loose with percentages. Again, for the umpteenth time, please tell us from where you get your infamous 65%! Keep it clean, and do not make us guess from where!

edkahl

According to a Google search Scandinavian tax rates are "Denmark at 55.56%, Finland at 51.25%, Iceland at 46.22%, Norway at 47.2% and Sweden at 57% “. When you include the value added tax rate of 25% it’s at lease 65% in total. There is no such ting as “free welfare”. It come out of other peoples wages.

Jorg

Ed, the percentages you quote are the top margins for the highest wage earners, far above the average for anyone. In Norway, taxation is made public and listed in newspapers for the highest wage earners, and rarely do you see anyone much above 40% of income taxation. Also, keep in mind that in the Scandinavian countries, you have free health care, and free education up through graduate school, if your grades are good enough.

And again, Ed, - you cannot arbitrarily add up unrelated percentages, with different, unrelated reference bases, like you do with top income taxes and VAT taxation! If you do that, it would not take much arbitrary addition of percentages to find some wage earners allegedly paying far more in taxes than they earn! That's basic math, Ed!

Ray Fowler

Hello, Jorg

Your request for clarification is legit, and it appears as if Ed has answered you. You will find Scandinavian countries listed in any number of studies, reports, etc. as having a high personal tax rate well above 50%. (Except Norway... their rate is about 40%... must be all of those fossil fuel profits from offshore drilling.) Property taxes are low in those countries, and corporate taxes come in at about 20%. So how does Ed come up with his 65% figure. Well, sales taxes (VAT) are about 25%. However, you cannot just stack the sales tax rate on top of the personal tax rate and say the high tax rate in those countries is 75% or so. Ed has adjusted those tax rates and come up with an overall tax rate of 65%.

Now, it's time to put the shoe on the other foot...

If you disagree with Ed's calculation... OK... then share with us what you believe the accurate number to be... and how you derived that number. That would be fair.

Jorg

Ray, please read what I wrote for Ed's education, including his grasp of basic math. His adjusted rates do not hold water, either. And do not ask me for some accurate numbers that do not exist. It all depends upon individual situations, which vary widely. But, why be so uptight about it all? What are you trying to prove? Anything, or just trying to confuse the issue of taxation? Norwegians are basically happy about their country, and I rarely hear any of my rather well to do friends complain about much, and certainly not about taxes!

Ray Fowler

Jorg... scurrying away. You are confident that Ed's 65% number is wrong... OK,,, then, you write that you personally cannot be asked for an accurate number because such numbers "do not exist." Jorg... you can't have it both ways. You reject someone else's data on the basis of "just because" but then be unwilling or unable to provide anything of substance to support your point of view. Like last week... we're back to the same old song.

BTW... did you notice how those gullible, uneducated and unpatriotic Trump followers elected a Republican candidate to the governorship of Virginia last night? Oh, wait a minute... I guess it was gullible, uneducated, and unpatriotic Virginian Democrats who rejected the DNC's progressive agenda. If you don't know it, know it now... free thinking, smart and true Americans come if all colors, shapes and sizes from both sides of the political aisle. You scurried away from responding to comments made by Carol Swain months ago. I guess you'll do the same about comments made last night by Winsome Sears in her acceptance speech.

Tafhdyd

Ray,

Beep, Beep, back up the truck...Where have you been? Everyone knows the Virginia election was rigged and stolen by the Repubs. Several people saw them bringing boxes of duplicate ballots in the back door before the polls opened, voting machines were programmed to toss out every 8th Democratic voted ballot. It will all be overturned in the courts in a few days. [smile]

BTW, glad to see you back on the keyboard but take it easy on the first day. Don't over do it.

Ray Fowler

Tafhdyd

Thanks, buddy. You know... it doesn't matter when you read Jorg's stuff... on a regular day or a recovery day with meds onboard... it just sounds the same... ackamarackus.

Bad news for DJ readers from the left side of the aisle. My thoracic surgeon can unequivocally confirm that conservatives do in fact have a heart.

Jorg

Actually, Tafhdyd, it took less than 100k gullible and easily fooled voters in Virginia to buy the CRT nonsense, and thus vote Republican.

However, I personally think that CRT should be taught in American schools, at least at the HS level. It is a part of history that should not be ignored, no matter how much some embarrassed people want it buried and forgotten.

Ray Fowler

Jorg... you have said a lot of things that are clearly below glide slope and left of path, but your endorsement of CRT is a real doozy.

I have not heard anyone in these pages say our children should not be taught our real history... the good and the bad. But CRT and it's sibling, the 1619 Project, are not history. Even your pals over at MSNBC said CRT does not exist. Teaching children of color that they can expect to be oppressed and teaching white children that they are evil just because they are white is not part of our history.

Hmmm... more than 12 million Africans were delivered on ships to the Americas... but only about 6% arrived in the British colonies. Does CRT include a chapter about the other countries that enslaved most of the Africans arriving in the Western Hemisphere? Twenty Angolans arrived in Jamestown in 1619. Was that the start of the foundation of America based on slavery? Well, surprise... not all those Angolans remained slaves. Wait, what? Some were treated as indentured servants and freed. So, this idea that a monolithic slave gobbling machine... that some would have you believe was the beginning of the United States... has some holes in it. We hear of free blacks throughout the colonies in the 1600 and 1700s. Where did they come from? I'm guessing not too many Africans during that time were paying passage to get on ships bound for the British American colonies.

Oh, there's more... the institutionalizing of slavery did not being in the colonies until nearly 45 years after 1619. Then, 25 years after that, the movement to abolish slavery begins in the colonies. Did you know that the compromises that gave us the US Constitution included a provision that the importation of slaves into the US would cease after 1807? And the state of Virginia debated emancipating slaves thirty years before the Civil War...

Look... I get it... none of this excuses the dark stain of slavery on our nation's soul... but neither does the barbarity suffered over those years define our country. When you teach US history, there has to be context and perspective. If you don't include them, then we would be teaching that the Democratic Party will forever be the party of slavery. Thank you Andrew Jackson.

The CRT and 1619 knuckleheads want to divide a great people... people of all kinds of color. White privilege? How does that square with the equivalent of 3 million white Union soldiers dying to free slaves in the South? They would also have you believe that things today are worse than they were in the 1960s. RUKM? Jorg, you have predictably evaded making any comment on Carol Swain or Tim Scott in the past. They will tell you that our country is not systematically racist... and both of them know the truth of that statement better than you or I ever will. Watch Winsome Sears' comments after being elected lieutenant governor of Virginia at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VUsxHbFHWR8 and then ask if the identity politics of CRT and the 1619 project have any place in our schools.

We have to teach real history, and some if it is embarrassing but no one is denying what happened. That's where you make a huge error. Americans are not trying to hide the tragedy of slavery... we can learn from it and become a better people.

Jorg

Ray, you ask me to do what I have carefully explained to Ed cannot be done! What’s the logic in that, or are you simply joking? Think about it!

Terence Y

Another great letter, Mr. Kahl. When you have Dems thinking a $3 trillion dollar Beggin’ Biden Boondoggle bill costs nothing and their sycophantic media parroting the same, we have to wonder how many people will continue to vote for Dems and their America Last policies.

Ray Fowler

Thanks, Terence... I have hung up my cleats for the night.

Here's a Nathan Mollat story featured yesterday in the DJ. I could not resist commenting... https://www.smdailyjournal.com/sports/local/what-s-victory-with-no-honor/article_d63b3ede-3bac-11ec-a1c5-27c3893bd31f.html

Terence Y

Ray - thanks for the link to your other comment. I’m glad you shared your experience and about the Harker program. However, I’m kind of bummed no “flat earth” insertion or any exclamation points. Just kidding, about the flat earth and punctuation, that is. Do I dare to get Jorg fired up about sportsmanship in his homeland? For instance, do they share a bottle of vodka after the game is over? Too soon?

Ray Fowler

A long, long time ago, our friend alluded to participation in some top caliber athletic competition but provided no details... dog sledding, soccer or hockey (which according to experts is actually soccer on ice)?

Norwegian runner Jakob Ingebrigtsen and hurdler Karsten Warholm took home the gold in the 1500 meter race and 400 meter hurdles, respectively, last year. So, those records are safe... but if IOC introduces scurrying and direct question dodging at the 2024 Olympics in Paris... looks like more gold for the Norge Olympic committee. Maybe.

Terence Y

Ray – hilarious. I’d say some of the other lefties on this site would give Jorg a run for his money. They’re no slouches in scurrying and direct question dodging, either. In fact, I’d predict a sweep of all individual medals from the San Mateo Daily Journal contingent. I’d like to include team medals, but when other competitors get a load of Jorg’s flat earth this and flat earth that, being called gullible and low-IQ and being targeted with the usual bevy of Jorg-ist rants, they’d probably vote him off the team.

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