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22 May 2013
How social media and cable news are changing the face of politics and human interaction… For the worse.
24 September 2012
The Paul of the Future Platform for Today
by Paul of the Future
I don't really have the skin, looks, education, past history, wealth, connections, and personality disorder for being a politician, though I feel I have several good ideas on how to address the issues facing our country. I am more of a strategist personality, also known as a coward. Someone who is an armchair congressperson, but I take it to the fantasy sport level in which I make imaginary bills for imaginary policy, having imaginary effects on an imaginary government. In my world, it's a one way dialogue, or lonely monologue as they are called, which is what essentially a party platform is.
We have sat through large scale conventions with lackluster performances from the main events, receiving stronger performances from the future of the party in the republican convention, with Marco Rubio's outstanding oratory, and the past in the democrat's convention with Bill Clinton's show stopping performance. When they were shouting Four More Years, I wonder if they were talking about Bill instead of Barrack. I would consider voting for Clinton, since he was able to work with a republican House and Senate to get the job done. I think Romney can work with Democrats better than Barrack can work with Republicans. I am a republican, and I can admit that there are some in the party that will vote against Obama no matter what the vote is for. But that being said, the president did not necessarily understand this congress, which is the only aspect of Republican control, was elected because of the said policies of this president, and they elected whack jobs like Michelle Bachman to capitalize on the negative effects of the present commander-in-chief. That isn't a matter of geography, or electoral college deciding that there has been a sea change in American politics. Maybe it was healthcare, or a stagnant recovery, or an uncertainty in our ability to survive as a nation, and although Barrack inheirited a difficult situation, he applied for the job under the pretense that he could fix it. I am not applying for the job, but I am pretentious enough to attempt to fix it in rational ways.
And with this imaginary hammer, I call to order the Paul of the Future Platform of Today. Feel free to wear a patriotic hat, or hold up a homemade sign with the slogan of your choice.
The Paul of the Future Platform for Today was written with no political party in mind, and in no means was supported by any outside influence other than my own experience, of which I have some that is irrelevant, and none that is. I have never been the leader of a business, apart from a brief part time failure as a videographer, and that was my own doing. I proudly present these issues, with the best intentions of perhaps one day including them in someone else's more qualified hands. Though I am a republican in terms of governing style, I tend to be socially permissive, so I have both of what the other parties hate in me, or what makes the conversation, well awkward. I only represent one voice, and that is my own, and though I believe part of what makes America the greatest country is that our country is founded on dialogue, rather than monologue. We allow conflicting voices, ideas, and take the best and the worst of both sides, because it's the same coin. Sometimes, an issue falls in our favor, sometimes it doesn't, but it isn't game over for anyone if it does. We move, sometimes clumsily, to the more perfect union every time we vote, we govern. I feel the following are a best practice solution from my mind in analyzing cause and effect relationships between citizens, government, companies large and small, and the vulnerable of our system. I present to you, my ideas for a better government as seen through the looking glass of our time.
Financial Policy, Economic Strategy, and the National Debt.
I will start with the ultimate in my list, as the national debt has reached the 16 trillion dollar mark. I would argue that this is our number one issue when it comes to economic policy, because it creates uncertainty in the global community. Not only is our currency devalued or inflated, our credit rating downgraded, and that has consequences domestically, it also has consequences internationally. The money we send as aid is devalued, so our helping hand doesn't go as far. I understand that some people will say screw the financial aid to other nations, but often times that keeps the peace in the world. It isn't exactly the best situation to be in, and there should be time limits on aid, and we should not aid countries that overwhelmingly have an anti-American outlook. So, 16,000,000,000,000. What to do about that?
A. Cut Spending
B. Raise Taxes
C. Lower Taxes.
I vote for F. Something else entirely. F is a combination of all of the above and then something radical that ties it all together. We do piss a lot of money away, and legislative reform is something I believe strongly in. I believe that federal funding should a. have a clearly defined goal and a clearly defined outcome. B. A clearly defined budget and time limit before it is voted on again if we are to continue funding, C. only partial funding is allotted for the duration goes into testing or research to verify it is going to have the desired effect, or if it is feasible to expect the results, before full funding is available. In the case of miscalculation, ineffectiveness, we are not on the hook for a total failure, just a partial one.
I believe that congress should have a budget that is balanced for peace time, or of no national crisis, and during wartime, or in the time of national crisis like Katrina, or the Midwestern drought, it cannot go beyond 20% of gdp. Mandatory cuts to non-essential programs will go in these times, with the exception of war time. A 3.65% mandatory war tax would be added to every business or individual that cannot be deducted for the sake of national security. Our entire economy is about 10 trillion, so that 3.65% is essentially 365 Billion Dollars, or 1 billion dollars a day for 1 year. For one, it would strongly discourage war unless necessary, for two, the war would be funded, adequately,
and at a rate that no other nation would dare attack us.
But what about the debt? At this point, almost all spending is actually deficit spending because the debt is bigger than the amount of revenue we take in. It's a sad state of affairs, really, and it requires simple, principled leadership to curb this growing threat to the safety and sovereignty of our nation, I propose this.
1. Interstate Commerce Sales Tax. Since I don't know of anyone who pays their state sales tax for internet purchases that do not have sales tax already put on, or furthermore, know even how to pay sales tax on those purchases. I propose a win-win situation, A 6% sales tax for end user purchases made across state lines. 75% of that revenue will go specifically to paying down the national debt, 20% will go to paying down the debt in the businesses' home state, and 5% will go to the end user's home state's debt. This will encourage states to be more friendly to interstate commerce, as well as promote job growth and business growth in the home state, and finally provide local merchants competitive footing by making sure that everyone has a goal. Ambitious states can go lower for sales tax. And purchases made in the home state would collect the same sales tax. This will simplify tax collection for businesses by only requiring revenue reporting in two ways, as opposed to 50+ since some metropolitan areas have a local tax. What happens when the national debt is paid off? We bank it.
2. Cash flow options, since almost a majority of people receive a refund of sorts for taxes, I propose offering a tax penalty free 5 year bond at a set rate of 5% apr for your tax refund. This will increase federal cash flow, cut down on processing fees, and offer the citizen a chance to grow their money without tax consequences. If you want to wait 5 years, since the money you had overpaid was never part of your actual income, you can get a solid 5%. Of course, there would be no early withdrawal, and that money would be surrendered upon death. The goal here is to grow individuals savings, and increase cash flow, on an opt in, voluntary basis. This will also help avoid quantitative easings by the federal reserve, and at best we can have a silent quantitative tightening.
3. Simplified tax code, with clear adjustments that are temporary. I would keep individual deductions the same, however, I would restrict corporate deductions to a minimum based on direct impact on the economy, with a specific time table for said deduction. I am a proponent of flat tax, and simple tax at a base rate of 25% Business and 20% individual. In the case of capital gains, I would take Romney's plan of eliminating it for the under 250K population, and increasing it to 20% individual and corporate. The death tax would be eliminated.
By taking these actions, the market will be able to better predict revenue, cash flow, and taxation based on strong policy that is predictable, and still remains incentive oriented, versus unpredictable and policy oriented. It will no longer matter as much what side you vote for, since everything is laid out.
End of Part One. Part Two on Tuesday.
05 August 2012
Often times I find myself trying to solve global problems so I don't have to deal with my own. Probably not the healthiest habit to have, I believe it's called transferring, but I tend to do that. So I decided to revamp my blog and do my own thing with it, I guess that's the point of these things.
Most of it will be me trying to predict trends, and they are just that, predictions, with no gaurantees of accuracy, and will be difficult, because my new years resolution was to be a more positive person. I will probably repeat ideas, topics, and solutions. I welcome comments, trolls (I tend to be one too), Troll 2's, fact checkers, grammar nazi's, and people that agree or disagree with me. I tend to learn more from the latter, and I appreciate that people come from different viewpoints and perspectives. Grammar Nazi's take note, I believe in the oxford comma, and I will use it. I made up my mind that it is more correct than without it. Diagramming sentences can be fun. (Run-on used on purpose).
I will try to maintain organization, with no promises, since I tend to lack that, but I will classify posts to what I feel like it relates too the most.
The Catagories are as follows:
Paul of the Future: This section is my idea chamber on how to solve problems, or where I see the world heading. I want to promote discourse and discussion from here. Comments are open to anyone, and I like it that way.
Paul of the Current: This is my op-ed section. Comments are open to anyone, but subject to review. Only because I don't want hateful stuff on my blog. I might decide to have a career in politics one day.
TART's: Technology and Arts Reviews and Trends. As an active father, I tend to miss a lot of things, but every now and again I stumble upon greatness. Look for reviews. Comments are open.
The Barbecue: This is where I turn sacred cows into delicious hamburgers. Comments are closed here.
Anyways, I hope you enjoy reading these, that I inspire you to think in a different way, or that I reconfirm your beliefs, even if those beliefs are that I'm an idiot.