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Political Pick Pocketing or How to Take Money Without "Raising Taxes"


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#21 Traveler

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 06:39 AM

Don, that is exactly what they do in Singapore. Every major road has scanners at every entrance/exit. Every car has a transponder and account. So it is seamless as far as actual toll booths. But they get everyone, and charge a pretty hefty toll. They also use congestion pricing. They don't want too many cars in Singapore. It costs ~$50k in duties and excise taxes and certificates of Entitlement.
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#22 HockeyDon

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 07:31 AM

I'm just getting pretty fed up with "we won't raise taxes, instead we'll do this other thing that's really a tax by a different name." Not just for the disingenuous nature of the fraud these politicians are pulling, but also for the stupidity of the average person not understanding that taxes are what pays for these public works.
Well, fuck.

How can I be expected to distinguish BS from reality when so much of my reality is utter BS?!

"There seems to be a lot of people dying of ignorance while living in the information age." my sister-in-law.

#23 LFC

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 08:29 AM

View PostHockeyDon, on 14 March 2019 - 07:31 AM, said:

I'm just getting pretty fed up with "we won't raise taxes, instead we'll do this other thing that's really a tax by a different name." Not just for the disingenuous nature of the fraud these politicians are pulling, but also for the stupidity of the average person not understanding that taxes are what pays for these public works.

Here in PA the five county area around Philadelphia supplies over half of the tax revenue for the state. The red counties whine and complain about how "their tax dollars" are used. These people are freeloaders, plain and simple. If they can see one thing that they don't use personally they bitch that they shouldn't have to pay for it. If they had to pay for the maintenance of their own street directly out of their pockets they'd be screeching that it was unfair. You can't win with the somethin' for nuthin' crowd.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#24 HockeyDon

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 09:09 AM

View PostLFC, on 14 March 2019 - 08:29 AM, said:

Here in PA the five county area around Philadelphia supplies over half of the tax revenue for the state. The red counties whine and complain about how "their tax dollars" are used. These people are freeloaders, plain and simple. If they can see one thing that they don't use personally they bitch that they shouldn't have to pay for it. If they had to pay for the maintenance of their own street directly out of their pockets they'd be screeching that it was unfair. You can't win with the somethin' for nuthin' crowd.

Tell me about it. I worked at Komatsu in Peoria, IL for about a year. There was a young guy who I would overhear going on and on about how the state should just cut the greater Chicago metro area off from the state and then everything would be so much better. The first time he said it to me I didn't have any facts on my side. The second time I had looked up just how much of the state's GDP is generated by the Chicago Metro Area and pointed out how much of the benefits he enjoys in Middle-of-Nowhere, IL were really funded by the very city he was deriding and wished to jettison. He didn't want to hear how that one area generated over 5-1/2 times more than the rest of the state combined.
Well, fuck.

How can I be expected to distinguish BS from reality when so much of my reality is utter BS?!

"There seems to be a lot of people dying of ignorance while living in the information age." my sister-in-law.

#25 Rich T Bikkies

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 09:29 AM

View PostHockeyDon, on 14 March 2019 - 09:09 AM, said:

Tell me about it. I worked at Komatsu in Peoria, IL for about a year. There was a young guy who I would overhear going on and on about how the state should just cut the greater Chicago metro area off from the state and then everything would be so much better.

This, for me, exemplifies some of the downside of your American culture of free speech[1]. So many Americans seem to think that this means everything they say is as valuable as anything ever said by Abe Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, FDR et al. Perhaps this could be ameliorated by better education in civics—and perhaps that ship has sailed.

[1] Against "some of the downside" there's a hell of a lot of upside. You perhaps have no idea how some of us Brits envy you. You have a culture—culture—of free speech; we have the series of Official Secrets Acts. We do have free speech, but by omission rather than commission. The culture is so different.
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#26 Traveler

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 10:10 AM

View PostLFC, on 14 March 2019 - 08:29 AM, said:

Here in PA the five county area around Philadelphia supplies over half of the tax revenue for the state. The red counties whine and complain about how "their tax dollars" are used. These people are freeloaders, plain and simple. If they can see one thing that they don't use personally they bitch that they shouldn't have to pay for it. If they had to pay for the maintenance of their own street directly out of their pockets they'd be screeching that it was unfair. You can't win with the somethin' for nuthin' crowd.
LFC where did you get that data? I recall it was even higher, but when I went to BEA GDP by County, I got 41.5% of state GDP generated by Philly's 5 counties alone. Add Lehigh, Northhampton and Allegheny(Pittsburgh) and it's 59.1% of the entire state's 67 counties GDP is generated by just 8 counties around the cities. Of course if GDP per capita lower in those others, the tax revenue differences would be greater, but cannot find that.
"Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened."-- Winston Churchill
"Anyone who has the power to make you believe absurdities has the power to make you commit injustices" Voltaire

#27 golden_valley

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 10:23 AM

View PostHockeyDon, on 14 March 2019 - 07:31 AM, said:

I'm just getting pretty fed up with "we won't raise taxes, instead we'll do this other thing that's really a tax by a different name." Not just for the disingenuous nature of the fraud these politicians are pulling, but also for the stupidity of the average person not understanding that taxes are what pays for these public works.

Those disingenuous politicians know that if they raise taxes or say anything that suggests this toll is a tax, they will not get re-elected and nothing will change. The same thing will happen with the next politician elected to that position. The end result is nothing gets done and the average person (stupid or not) will drive on pitted, crumbling roads.

The connection between the taxes we pay and the quality of roads we drive on has been lost. People are convinced the gas tax is used for other purposes (in CA at least). Plus we have the general anti tax attitude that has persisted for years.

The attitude you noted in Peoria is common in all of down state Illinois. I grew up there hearing about how awful and evil Chicago was. I haven't lived there for over 40 years but when I talk to childhood friends the theme recurs.

#28 JackD

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 11:26 AM

Nothing's changed in those 40 years.

#29 LFC

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Posted 14 March 2019 - 12:08 PM

View PostTraveler, on 14 March 2019 - 10:10 AM, said:

LFC where did you get that data? I recall it was even higher, but when I went to BEA GDP by County, I got 41.5% of state GDP generated by Philly's 5 counties alone. Add Lehigh, Northhampton and Allegheny(Pittsburgh) and it's 59.1% of the entire state's 67 counties GDP is generated by just 8 counties around the cities. Of course if GDP per capita lower in those others, the tax revenue differences would be greater, but cannot find that.

It was state income tax receipt data that I found it a couple of years back and thought I had even posted up the link somewhere here at TRS. If I get a chance I'll try to dig it up later.
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#30 LFC

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Posted 01 April 2019 - 03:18 PM

View PostTraveler, on 14 March 2019 - 10:10 AM, said:

LFC where did you get that data? I recall it was even higher, but when I went to BEA GDP by County, I got 41.5% of state GDP generated by Philly's 5 counties alone. Add Lehigh, Northhampton and Allegheny(Pittsburgh) and it's 59.1% of the entire state's 67 counties GDP is generated by just 8 counties around the cities. Of course if GDP per capita lower in those others, the tax revenue differences would be greater, but cannot find that.

You might find this of interest. It's from 2011 but it has some well organized data in it.

http://economyleague...alth-budget.pdf
" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer

#31 LFC

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Posted 01 April 2019 - 03:22 PM

More pickpocketing and political cowardice but this hits all Pennsylvania state residents. Rather than paying for PA State Police with the general fund the state is diverting a big chunk of money away from highway and bridge repair. With Republicans in control it's very hard to get them to raise enough revenue to pay our bills.

Quote

A state analysis suggests too much gas tax money is being siphoned to pay Pennsylvania State Police bills.

The Legislative Budget and Finance Committee concluded that the state police payments from the Motor License Fund are $220 million more than they should be. The Motor License Fund consists of revenue from taxes paid at the gas pump along with vehicle registration fees. The money is supposed to primarily fund road and bridge repairs but a portion has been getting directed to state police to compensate their highway safety work.

That is fueling controversy as lawmakers grapple with finding an alternative way to fund the state police. Gov. Tom Wolf has proposed levying a tax on local governments that don’t have their own police as a way to replace some of the gas tax money that is going to state police.


Quote

The study estimated that the justifiable amount that should be taken from the Motor License Fund is just over $530 million.

Last year, the state shifted more than $750 million from the gas tax pot to pay the state police bills. Almost two-thirds of the state police budget was covered using funds from the Motor License Fund, the study found.

If PennDOT would have had the extra $220 million, it could have fixed 1,111 miles of road or replaced 138 bridges, the study found.

In a response to the report, state police Col. Tyree Blocker said the study underestimated some of the work done by state police that related to highway safety. That includes work done by press relations staff and forensics and lab work done to investigate crashes and driving under the influence of alcohol or drug arrests. Blocker said that when those activities are included the level of justifiable funding is closer to what the state police have been getting.

" 'Individual conscience' means that women only get contraceptives if their employers, their physicians, their pharmacists, their husbands and/or fathers, pastors, and possibly their mayors, Governors, State Secretaries of Health, Congressmen, Senators, and President all agree that in that particular case they're justifiable." --D.C. Sessions

"That's the problem with being implacable foes - no one has any incentive to treat you as anything more than an obstacle to be overcome."

"The 'Road to Serfdom' is really all right turns." --Progressive Whisperer

""The GOP ... where every accusation is also a confession." --Progressive Whisperer





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