William Thien

Archive for February 2014

Here is an interesting observation on The Dependent Child Tax Deduction. In China, a country labeled as communist by our government, if you come from a family that has more than one child and get married and you yourself have more than one child, you are fined by the state rather heavily and it is directly proportional to your income, if I’m not mistaken.

Here in The United States we take the tax dollars of single taxpayers, empty nesters, and married couples with no children and give it to others in the form of a dependent child tax deduction AND withholding on their pay checks. In other words, we redistribute wealth (functionally the same thing as communism) by taking money from some people and giving it to others, in this case giving it to others for the purposes of having children and paying for those children.

Yet, we don’t have enough money to pay for basic municipal services such as public education because we give the people who use more of those services a tax break for using them. Does that sound like foolish and unfair tax policy to you? Well read on then.

What the real problem with the Dependent Child Tax Deduction is in my opinion is that because it has such a substantial effect on those taxpayers who take it, they often have more children than they can thoroughly raise on their own. They will fill a small apartment with children just to decrease the burden on their income taxes through the implementation of the dependent child tax deduction because they have reached an income ceiling and want to bring home more money. They do so by taking the deduction and by having more children they can also claim more withholding on their pay and take home more during the tax year as well.

In some areas this behavior is so prevalent, children are squirting out of each and every nook and cranny of some apartment buildings like in the ghetto tenements of the 1920’s and 1930’s, crying and squalling at all hours of the day and night because the parents don’t have the resources to both work and take care of their children properly. In other words, the tax deduction creates population growth like an uncontrollable, disfigured monster.

The net effect is that there is an increase in the need for Child Care Protective Services nationwide as families neglect their children because though they weren’t sure they could take care of the added responsibilities of another child, they went ahead and had it anyway because the tax breaks are so enticing financially. So, not only are the costs of raising the child passed on to those who don’t even have any children, the dependent child tax deduction actually increases the size of government because many of those having the children just to get the tax break can’t effectively raise the children and therefore require government assistance to make it work.

I have even heard people tell me they were happy about the timing of their latest baby because it was coming just in time for them to take the Dependent Child Tax Deduction, ignorant of course of where the money really comes from. One of them even considers that they are a conservative. If there is one thing Americans are ignorant of in America it is taxes and I don’t think that’s an accident. In fact, simply because people take the deduction doesn’t mean they are communists. It is only likely that they ignorant of how the system works and what type of system it is and from where the money comes.

But I digress, the main point of my observation is here. Here is the funny thing. In China you get fined for having extra children. In America we give you a tax break for having children by giving you someone else’s money. And we call The Chinese “communists.” In this respect, it’s kind of like the pot calling the kettle “black,” wouldn’t you say?

I’m not so sure I am against the deduction, though with tax days approaching, I’ve worked out a fairness deduction for those with no children or empty nesters. Like most of my essays, I don’t just elaborate the situation, I offer solutions, real solutions, real change, not just political “chump change.” So here is what I believe is a workable and fair solution.

Here it is! If the average number of children in The American household is 2.5, for example (I don’t know what it is actually today), then the taxpayer with no children should also receive a deduction equal to that of the family taking the dependent child tax deductions, a deduction equal to that of the average number of children in an American household. Though they wouldn’t take home as much pay because those without children couldn’t claim extra withholding on their pay check, that is at least more fair and equal when it comes to deductions. Otherwise, without some equalizing factor you are just redistributing income from those with no children to those with children at the expense of those with no children. Communism. It’s not even socialism. It’s just plain communism. It’s just plain communism because no services are provided, it’s merely a redistribution of wealth, taking money from some who have no children and giving it to others that have children. What’s really interesting is that everyone uses that deduction who has children, conservatives and liberals alike, because it’s a deduction that actually pays!

I think this is one prime example of American communism that nobody wants to discuss because the tax break is so substantial it effectively changes the income category of many families, it’s just that it does so on the backs of many others. But the tax break really is for all intents and purposes, communism.

Copyright © William Thien 2014

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One of the things I find most disquieting about modern democracy is that it has been very slow to evolve. Elections are still the only method of changing political party affiliated personnel and the system has become to a certain extent antiquated in my opinion.

One of the ideas I included in the first edition of my book titled The Dream Chip was a discussion of a “redistribution of democracy” right down to the very individual. I gave it a name, THE COMMON COUNCIL SOFTWARE PROGRAM.

What the program involves is a redistribution of democracy out of the hands of the elected official and into the hands of the individual voter, segmenting the power of the elected into tiny parts with each part belonging to a voter. Naturally such ideas have many in the political professions concerned, to say the least. No longer would you be voting just for candidates, you would vote on the day-to-day issues of government, government right on up to the federal government. Your elected would have to vote based on the preponderance of your votes on each and every issue. Knowing we have the technological power to do something like that today and have for some time is why I believe our current system of democracy is antiquated.

You would receive an email or a post card and there would also be public notice about issues and you would vote on the issues at home or perhaps a public kiosk instead of letting your elected officials vote on the issues. Your elected officials would then vote based on your choices, not their choices. Their role would become more of a facilitator rather than a politician.

How many times have you voted for someone based on a campaign promise only to have them go back on that promise or to forget about it? Let me tell you something. If you are of voting age, you don’t have enough fingers and toes to count how many times that has happened to you.

Where I reside we don’t even have the right to vote in a referendum on the ballot during an election. If you ask me, that is archaic considering mass communication today.

But there are drawbacks. Just as today, individuals for example, could be pushed aside by the masses, even when today often the masses can be wrong or easily misled on matters through clever media manipulation. Democracy can be tyrannical, too. Democracy is in fact despotic. Democracy creates minorities.

Is it time we redistribute democracy right down to the individual? Because it can be done and with much less difficulty and cost in my opinion than maintaining the current structure of government. Giving you the power as voters to actually determine the outcome of political decisions would be an incredible enhancement to the current form of democracy. I know certain entrenched elements of our society have fought me on this matter. Some have suggested I’ve probably showed up on lists as a troublemaker because of my political ideas.

I think such forms of democracy are something to consider. In my opinion, what I describe “is what real modern democracy looks like.” What choice do you have now on issues, an email? Think about it.

Copyright © William Thien 2014

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Someone may have already noticed this, but while watching the Superbowl I happened to recognize a glaring similarity between the two teams that nobody seems to be talking about. In fact it is so obvious and so legislatively significant that the fact that nobody is talking about it almost suggests that the matter is being suppressed. The two teams in the Superbowl are from the only two states where recreational marijuana usage is completely legal.

“Why is that significant,” somebody asked me? Well for one, it’s a statistical improbability. Secondly, nobody said a thing about it. My guess is that nobody said a thing about it because the line on the matter has been that marijuana effects performance of just about every kind. Why then did the two teams come from states that have legalized recreational usage? Well, of course the answer to that is that the teams themselves don’t use it. Yet, there is the matter of the statistical improbability that the two teams are from the only two states where recreational usage is legal.

But is it just an accident that it happened that way? Nobody has asked that question and I think the reason is that everyone is a afraid of the answer, whatever it might be. Maybe we should be asking that very question, “Why did both teams in the Superbowl come from states where recreational marijuana usage has been legalized?”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabis_in_the_United_States

For those of us who don’t use marijuana it is still in fact a key issue because many if not most of us are sick and tired of paying for the criminalization of marijuana and all of the associated costs of locking people up for its usage. That is why the fact that the two teams in the Superbowl came from states where recreational usage is legal is significant, if you ask me.

Also, if you ask me that money used to keep marijuana criminalized, which is huge, HUGE!, particularly in a historical context, could be better spent on public education, new prosthetic limbs for soldiers returning from the two longest wars in our country’s history, fixing the roads, health care, and all sorts of public works projects that go unfunded.

Furthermore, legalized medicinal and recreational marijuana sales have opened an entirely new and substantially productive source of revenue for municipalities and states that wasn’t there before.

Copyright © William Thien 2014

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