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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
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    Default lets talk about tax baby.

    Tax.
    What is it, why do we pay it, how much is fair?

    This is an abstract discussion, for anyone who just likes to understand the nature of things for the pure enjoyment of knowing.
    If you just want to get your nose to the grindstone and make lots of cash, because everyone else is doing it, or because you want to retire to a luxury beach in Hawaii, then this isn't the conversation for you.

    As far as I can tell, I pay lots of tax, and lots of it seems to be spent on stuff I get no benefit from.
    I don't know, I haven't priced the cost of a police force or a medical system.
    I am pretty sure though, that the parking meter taxation system, for example, is not giving me good transportation services.

    I wonder how this whole tax thing got started, and if its still running right.
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but historically, the warlord of a particular kingdom demanded protection money.

    So the first tax was a sort of contribution to a standing army, rather than having to go and take on the next kingdom with a slightly sharpened stick.

  2. #2
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    May 2004
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    2,774

    Default

    Don't forget rates. They already ping householders more depending on the value of the home asset, regardless of household factors like income or occupancy. A flat rate per dwelling, or a poll tax, would be fairer. Neither ever likely to happen.

    And water rates. In Wellington, water rates are calculated on the same basis as other rates. A homeowner can, however, have a voluntary water meter. Suits homeowners with a high value home and low occupancy. Not many take it up, possibly not aware of it.

  3. #3
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by artemis View Post
    Don't forget rates. They already ping householders more depending on the value of the home asset, regardless of household factors like income or occupancy. A flat rate per dwelling, or a poll tax, would be fairer. Neither ever likely to happen.

    And water rates. In Wellington, water rates are calculated on the same basis as other rates. A homeowner can, however, have a voluntary water meter. Suits homeowners with a high value home and low occupancy. Not many take it up, possibly not aware of it.
    A very good point.
    For the purposes of this discussion, I'd agree with you, that a tax can be any mandatory transfer of wealth or labor, from the populous, into the hands of an individual or authority.

    Wiki tells me that the first recorded tax system was in Ancient Egypt.
    Some 5000 years ago.
    Or 20,000 generations ago, as I like to think of it.

    Since they were a grain producing people, the tax was one fifth of production.
    I pay more than that, buy a large amount, if you add it all up.
    So I'm being squeezed more than my ancient ancestors.
    Last edited by McDuck; 30-04-2019 at 08:04 AM.

  4. #4
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    Default

    Here's an interesting quote for your consideration.


    "Taxes are the price we pay for civilization."

    Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.


    So, is that true?
    and if we vote for less tax, are we choosing a less civilised society?

  5. #5
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    May 2004
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    Default

    How about this ...

    "The real goal should be reduced government spending, rather than balanced budgets achieved by ever rising tax rates to cover ever rising spending."

    – Thomas Sowell, American Economist and Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by artemis View Post
    How about this ...

    "The real goal should be reduced government spending, rather than balanced budgets achieved by ever rising tax rates to cover ever rising spending."

    – Thomas Sowell, American Economist and Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution

    Nice.
    You need a balanced view.


    While Oliver was a judge, who lived in that world of always facing selfish, irrational behavior, Thomas was a black man, conscripted into a war, to eventually become an academic. (But I suspect he's really an artist).
    So Yes, they reflect their environments.

    One sees the evil of savagery, and the other the evil of slavery.
    But how does this help us figure out the original questions, and is America a good model for New Zealand to emulate?
    Do wo have their resources for example ( I think not).

  7. #7
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    Default

    But what about the small view?

    Personally, I find tax a disincentive to activity.
    For me, like most living things, the bigger the reward, the greater the attraction.
    Unlike most living things, who are usually after, food, water, and reproduction, I'm also attracted partly by money.
    Money, being able to be swapped for the above mentioned things.

    Especially when I'm coming up with a new venture, or product.
    It's difficult enough to find a need, figure out how to bring all the materials and skills, etc together, to fill that need.

    Then the time and effort in dealing with official red tape, and creating efficient systems.
    Only to have someone just put out a big hand, reach into your pocket, and take a good whack of the profit.

    Less profit, less incentive.
    Often, i'll just not bother, another opportunity is lost to the country.
    Last edited by McDuck; 08-05-2019 at 07:21 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Brisbane Wellington Auckland
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    793

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by McDuck View Post
    But what about the small view?

    Personally, I find tax a disincentive to activity.
    For me, like most living things, the bigger the reward, the greater the attraction.
    Unlike most living things, who are usually after, food, water, and reproduction, I'm also attracted partly by money.
    Money, being able to be swapped for the above mentioned things.

    Especially when I'm coming up with a new venture, or product.
    It's difficult enough to find a need, figure out how to bring all the materials and skills, etc together, to fill that need.

    Then the time and effort in dealing with official red tape, and creating efficient systems.
    Only to have someone just put out a big hand, reach into your pocket, and take a good whack of the profit.

    Less profit, less incentive.
    Often, i'll just not bother, another opportunity is lost to the country.
    How much tax do you pay pa?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beano View Post
    How much tax do you pay pa?
    I never discuss numbers.
    but, a lot.

    For the purposes of this discussion,
    it's probably way more than I pay directly to the TAX dept.

    For example, the new 1.5% OCR announced today, is a TAX on my money.
    Tricky, indirect, hard to see, but never the less, money taken from me without my permission.

    That aside, what did you have in mind?

  10. #10
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    Apr 2005
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    Risk.

    One of the most important things to manage in any business is risk.

    One compelling reason I always pay (sometimes overpay) my taxes is to control risk.

    I stay out of grey areas also.

    I need to know that there's no big unplanned for tax in my future.

    thoughts?


 

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