In response, another addressee, an Economics Professor, noted:
They have grasped one thing – the only chance of making income redistribution work is to have it at the national level. What they do not accept is that the combination of maximum loss of efficiency that goes with virtually anything done at the national level and the disincentives to take risk (be entrepreneurial) means that the levels of income available to be re-distributed are going to fall. As a result, what ultimately gets re-distributed is poverty and those in positions of authority are not on the receiving end of that transaction. This is part of what is meant by “rent-seeking society”. Sooner or later a rent-seeking society becomes synonymous with corrupt government.I agree with that analysis, but because we have a spending habit, and each of us has things we want the Federal Government to do, we have to tax. I will agree that in a booming economy we can "outgrow" a debt problem, but only if we have a "booming" economy and we are not also adding to that debt by overspending our tax intake.
The Fairfax County board member may not remember fleeing taxes but I do. A good part of Costa Rican development is probably a direct function of US tax rates. Also, it does not really matter if the people flee because they can send their capital abroad.
In DC they are like Grandparents at Christmas. They are overdoing it. My youngest son and his wife just impound the stuff and dole it out over time. We no longer have someone like that in DC, after President Nixon's over zealous attempt to impound funds, which resulted in Congress passing the Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974. Thus, there are no longer any adults in charge in DC (and another reason to think that President Nixon really messed up the Federal Government).
I have no solutions, but I do believe that the first step is getting the economy going and the second is electing people who think their job is to limit the reach and role of the Federal Government. Are those two things compatible?
UPDATE: (That was quick.) A friend of mine in the analysis business with a focus on China just noted:
Was told that Hong Kong shipping companies have so many empty (unused) containers that they are leasing container ships (themselves otherwise idle) b/c HK port has no place to put them.This is NOT a good sign.
Regards — Cliff
♠ Down in Virginia they have Counties, which are actual levels of Government and those Counties are part of the structure of Government, providing a unifying view above the City and Town level, but more local than far off Richmond.