Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tough Sh!t

I like Stephen King. His work has inspired me, and his book, On Writing, has to be one of the best books I’ve ever read. I still think about some of the thoughts in there regularly.

He’s a maverick, a little bit of a wild card, and not the person I’d want to emulate in many ways, but I love his Tax Me, For F@%&’s sake stance on taxes (also covered in the Tough Sh!t piece on Huffington Post). I like that he speaks his mind, and isn’t pandering to anyone.

Overall I think he’s right, and we ought to pay more in taxes overall, but especially rich people, many of whom don’t contribute to the improvement of our economy. They do some good in their companies, but many rich people make lots of money trading stocks and bonds outside of their incomes. They don’t add much value to our economy, or to the country. They speculate, and create more waves in the financial markets, and disrupt the world, often for their own good and to the detriment of the small investor.

However I also agree with many of the comments in the HuffPost piece. I don’t want raised taxes to be wasted in government on more of the same. If we raise taxes, I want the deficit lowered, I want less spending overall, less spending overseas, and work done to make our government more efficient. I do favor moving more grants to the states, and having them administer programs that provide safety nets or valuable services. I’ll pay more, but I want better use of the money.

And ultimately that’s a large part of the problem. Too much money in politics from corruption, from the need to run expensive campaigns, and from the potential jobs afterwards (and health care).

Raising taxes isn’t popular, and I’m not sure the Buffet Rule makes sense without some reforms taking place elsewhere. However I also don’t like lots of the Ryan budget, which refuses to address issues as well, and works to cut so many social benefits radically, disproportionally hitting the poor. If we have dis-proportionate hits at this point, they ought to be on the rich, not the poor.

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