Is Bill Gates' Money a 'National Resource' or his to spend?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by fivepoint, Mar 3, 2011.

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Is Bill Gates' Money a 'National Resource' or his to spend?

  1. No. Any wealth earned by an individual is the property of that individual.

    72.3%
  2. Yes. The state (we the people) can take that wealth at any time we feel it justified.

    10.8%
  3. Bill Gates' money, maybe. Steve can keep his though.

    4.6%
  4. Other (describe below)

    12.3%
  1. fivepoint macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #1
    According to Michael Moore, in a recent interview with GritTV, any wealth a rich person has earned is not actually theirs, it's a national resource, it's mine, it's yours, it's our wealth. Based on recent conversations with several of you and many on the left calling for DRASTICALLY higher taxation rates on the wealthiest Americans, I find myself wondering how popular this idea really is. Certainly there is much precedent for this line of thought... Mao, Stalin, Marx, Che, etc. all would have agreed... but where do you sit? Do you make claim to the funds earned by a wealthy entrepreneur? Are these funds up for the taking by popular opinion and political recourse (if we convince enough congressmen, should it be ours for the taking)?

     
  2. mcrain macrumors 68000

    mcrain

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    #2
    Thank you Fivepint, I needed a good laugh.

    Taxes are the price you pay for the privelege of earning money. If the cost of government is X, then the revenue collected should equal X. If one party *cough* GOP *cough* cuts revenue so much that we end up with a debt that equals Y, then you must cut spending and increase revenue so that you can pay X plus some of Y to eventually eliminate the debt.

    If the people who benefited the most from the cuts now have all the wealth and make all the income, they are going to have to pay a higher share of the increases in X. That's just how it is.

    You can't expect the poor to pay what they don't have, and you can't kill the middle class.
     
  3. coochiekuta macrumors 6502

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    #3
    the cash in your pocket really isnt yours but your assets are. however most of the "money" that exists in the world, doesnt actually exists. they are just 1s and 0s in a database.
     
  4. citizenzen Suspended

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    Mar 22, 2010
    #4
    I watched the video and don't think that's what Michael Moore said.

    He's not saying that the money in Bill Gate's bank account is a national resource, he's saying the wealth generated by our economy is a national resource and that there have been intentional political and business decisions that have concentrated greater amounts of our economic wealth into the hands of the rich.

    Don't you think that's true, 5P?
     
  5. codymac macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Michael Moore? I stopped paying attention when you said that.

    Interested to hear your explanation of this.
     
  6. kavika411 macrumors 6502a

    kavika411

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    #6
    No one needs that much money. Assuming his wealth is around 40 billion, that's more than anyone could ever spend or needs. I say tax it all, and leave him with a few hundred million. That's still an insane amount of money. That way, he'd be paying his fair share of taxes, and would still have more money than he needs.
     
  7. mcrain macrumors 68000

    mcrain

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  8. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #8
    I'd have to disagree with you there. There were several key-words in that interview which I think clearly proves his position is that he (and the rest of us) have a claim on the wealth earned by someone else. I think he would carry that opinion regardless of WHERE the person made the money. If it was a billionaire who made all their money in France (not our economy), and then moved to America for retirement, I think his position on his claim to that wealth would be the same...



    I can't tell if you're joking or being serious. On the chance that you're being serious, please answer the following question... In 2009 the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation gave $3.653 Billion to some of the most important charitable causes around the globe. They're known around the world as one of the most highly selective, efficient, and effective charitable organizations. Is it your position that our federal government would more efficiently/effectively utilize this money?



    Why didn't you vote "yes?"
     
  9. citizenzen Suspended

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    #9
    Then by all means, share those keywords with the rest of us so we may judge them for ourselves.
     
  10. mcrain macrumors 68000

    mcrain

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    #10
    You so fundamentally don't understand the concept of taxes, I had to click other. What you make, after the price you pay to make that money (taxes), is yours to keep. Once you've paid the taxes that were due, the government can not, and should not, be allowed to cause you for forfeit that wealth.

    Your fundamental misunderstanding of taxes makes me smile sometimes.
     
  11. coochiekuta macrumors 6502

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    #11
    most countries that print out pieces of paper for us to use as currency is this property of that government.
     
  12. zap2 macrumors 604

    zap2

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    #12
    Haha, perhaps you could make the questions a little bit more loaded...I almost sensed a drop of fairness for a second!

    But honestly, no, I disagree with Moore...but he's just like any of the other extremists going over the top.

    As far as raising taxes on the wealthy, I'm all for it. I don't buy the "higher taxes is theft", but somehow the current is a just amount? But the current rate isn't some magical number, its just what we as a nation settled on in the past. I support a tax system which brings helps solve the issue we have now. So 100% would screw us just as 0% tax would too. Given our debt, I think we need higher taxes and the wealthy can afford a higher amount. Most likely one point we'll have this debt/spending under control and we can cut taxes across the board.
     
  13. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #13
    Another shameful twisting of the facts by 5p.

    By the way, the bulk of billy's money is now the property of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. They do have some control over it but it's no longer his and in a way, is a "National Resource".

    All rights are irrevocably connected to responsibilities. Why is that so difficult for libertarians to understand?
     
  14. kavika411 macrumors 6502a

    kavika411

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    #14
    I say tax all of his money except a few hundred million, because it is consistent with what we've learned.

    First, we've learned that people are not dissuaded from working hard and making more money out of fear of having the extra money taxed more consequentially. That doesn't happen. People work just as hard for the next dollar, regardless if they get to keep all of it, or just a few pennies.

    Second, we've learned that the wealthiest people use more resources and do more damage along the way. Taxing all of his money except a few hundred million will help bring back those resources and fix those damages.

    Third, he is more able to pay taxes than other people, and we have learned that that is the standard for taxation. Assuming his wealth is $40,000,000, he is definitely more able to pay $39,500,000 than anyone else. And since he can pay, he should pay.

    Fourth, we have learned that the public sector is more efficient to help those in need, and is better at discerning who is in need, than the private sector. I point that out because of your comment about the Gates' foundation donations. That money should be taxed, and the better qualified entity - the government - should discern its distribution.

    Fifth - and finally - we've learned that it is the government, not the private sector, that gets us out of a recession/depression. If he were to spend his $40,000,000, it would not help the economy. If all of that were taxed except half a billion, then the government could funnel the taxed $39,500,000 to things that help the economy grow.
     
  15. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #15
    There seems to be this unwritten internet rule that when you can't win arguments on current events, you fall back on "theoreticals".

    ...A corollary of which is, if it involves money, be sure you use the name of some rich person other than Warren Buffett.

    (If nobody else has claimed this rule, I hereby dub it Veil's Second Law. :D )
     
  16. codymac macrumors 6502

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    #16
    *squint*
    I see what you did there.

    Taken to eleven: since most assets are collateralized, I guess there not technically the owners' either.
     
  17. miloblithe macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

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    #17
    Actually, it'd be about the same. I base this on the fact that the company I work for, which is a for-profit / non-profit international development company (almost all international development companies have both for- and non- profit arms) receives funding from both USAID and the Gates Foundation. I think it's fairly obvious that we're roughly equally effective at implementing projects from different sources of funding; we're the same company with the same staff on either projects. Of course, Gates rules and USAID rules differ a little in terms of what we have to do with that money, but they're not all that different in the end.

    And that's what most of development money goes to in the end: companies (or organizations) that implement projects. The companies and organizations are the same regardless of where the funding comes from.
     
  18. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #18
    Fivepoint, I do wish you would stop it with the sensational and inaccurate threads. If not for our sake, yours. They are intentionally designed to bait and inflame.
     
  19. JoeG4 macrumors 68030

    JoeG4

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    #19
    I wonder how much of that 60B came from government-run institutions. You always whine about how people are paying for unions whether they want to or not - schools have to pay MS whether they want to or not (I can think of more than one case of a Linux or Mac school getting sued/audited by MS for not having a windows site license).

    Chew on that. :D
     
  20. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #20
    Lee, I'm sorry... but the definition of 'sensational' is not the same as 'anything Lee disagrees with'. Would you call the thread started today by rdowns called "Mike Huckabee... and American Dick" sensational? How about the one called "Wisconsin Public workers stand up to Republicans." I find that one pretty sensational. :rolleyes: Grow up.

    May I also ask why you're not confident enough with your own views to answer the poll? Also, what exactly is 'innacurate' with my thread?
     
  21. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #21
    For this thread to be as sensationalist as the one you mentioned, you'd have to rename this thread "How many of you socialists what to steal Bill Gate's money?"
     
  22. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #22
    Exactly, taxes are the price you pay for living in a stable society, therefore those who society has allowed to become rich owe some of that back to society in order to give other people the chance to succeed.

    And 5P, if people are really able to become wealthy without government providing regulation and a stable, secure environment then why doesn't Somalia have any Billionaires? It's basically your no government paradise.
     
  23. Mac'nCheese macrumors 68030

    Mac'nCheese

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    #23
    And yet I'm the guy you refuse to talk to?
     
  24. Liquorpuki macrumors 68020

    Liquorpuki

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    #24
    If Michael Moore is gonna insist wealth is pubic domain, I want a piece of his mansion. That guy is not as rich as Bill Gates but he's still friggin rich.

    As far as taxation, you can't raise taxes on the poor because they don't have anything. You can only raise taxes on the rich. And you can't stimulate the economy during a slump without spending, which is why taxes are needed. It's a crappy dilemma, not everyone is gonna be happy. I'd settle for taxing the rich too if I was a politician.
     
  25. fivepoint thread starter macrumors 65816

    fivepoint

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    #25
    I was just trying to make a point that you always seemed so willing to have a reasonable debate and then that one time you went off the deep-end and said a few things I found a little offensive.

    The hiatus is over Mac'nCheese. I'll talk to you! :D
     

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