What would you do for the privilege of being American ?

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Submitted by kcal09 on February 25, 2012 - 10:17pm

According to Tim (The Turbo tax cheat) Geithner " The Most Fortunate Americans need to bear a slightly larger burden of the privilege of being American"
The irony is a Tax Cheat lectures others to pay more taxes for the privilege

http://www.zerohedge.com/contributed/tax...

Nearly half of All Americans don't pay income taxes, does that mean they should lose their privilege ?
What would you do for the privilege of being American ?

Submitted by AN on February 25, 2012 - 10:57pm.

Leave your baby with your mom when he's 2 months old for your one and only chance to get out. Risk your life for a slim chance you might get to go to America. Not being able to reunite with your baby until he's 10. Is that enough of a sacrifice/burden?

Submitted by harvey on February 26, 2012 - 5:46am.

I would respect the Constitution - a document that kcal09 has obviously never read.

Submitted by barnaby33 on February 26, 2012 - 8:01am.

Meanwhile in Non Sequador. I just re-read the Constitution and couldn't find where your derivative mark intercepts this discussion. Would you care to be less obtuse or is, "read the Constitution," your one-liner for everything?
Josh

Submitted by sdduuuude on February 26, 2012 - 10:33am.

I don't think the constitution says you have to pay taxes to retain the rights protected therein.

They are, if I recall, unalienable.

Submitted by harvey on February 26, 2012 - 11:19am.

14th Amendment

Submitted by briansd1 on February 26, 2012 - 11:52am.

There also could be a penalty to being American.

You have to pay income taxes on your wordwide income, so it's not so easy to give up American citizenship. There is a process to renounce it.

As far as income taxes, I think that it's only fair to pay proportional to the share of wealth you get from society.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on February 26, 2012 - 2:19pm.

Life can be sweet anywhere if you're doing well.

Submitted by UCGal on February 26, 2012 - 2:47pm.

briansd1 wrote:
There also could be a penalty to being American.

You have to pay income taxes on your wordwide income, so it's not so easy to give up American citizenship. There is a process to renounce it.

As far as income taxes, I think that it's only fair to pay proportional to the share of wealth you get from society.


If you meet the rules for being an ex-patriot you can exclude a huge chunk of income earned overseas. But that's because your probably paying taxes where the money is earned. There are rules of how many days you can be in the U.S. per year or lose your expat status. My sister was an expat several years ago and I'm considering an overseas retirement. I do not plan to renounce my citizenship.

Submitted by svelte on February 26, 2012 - 3:19pm.

kcal09 wrote:
Nearly half of All Americans don't pay income taxes, does that mean they should lose their privilege ?


http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-au...

Submitted by briansd1 on February 26, 2012 - 3:54pm.

UCGal wrote:
My sister was an expat several years ago and I'm considering an overseas retirement. I do not plan to renounce my citizenship.

Not a problem if there are reciprocity treaties with other countries, and if your income is just "average." The exclusion is $91,500 but you still need to file a tax return.

But if you have great wealth, and international income, being an American can be a problem.
http://www.dailyfinance.com/2010/07/20/m...

I know a lady who gave up her green card because of tax reasons. Her husband died and she wants to come back to America to live with her children. Although USCIS shows that she still has a Green Card, she applying for a permanent residency all over again just to avoid the tax issues of when she was away.

The point is that the US Government doesn't let you give up your citizenship, or permanent residency that easy.

So as the OP pointed out, maybe there's price to pay for American citizenship.

Submitted by barnaby33 on February 26, 2012 - 4:42pm.

Still not making heads or tails of your argument, if there is one. Just read the entire 14th amendment, several times. Its an attempt to nail down citizenship, later used to foster civil rights. Nothing in this thread, or what Timmay said via Zerohedge has anything to do with revoking or proving ones right to be an American. It merely opines that the tax load on those who are deemed to be wealthy should be increased.

You sir are being a twat.
Josh

Submitted by harvey on February 26, 2012 - 6:37pm.

barnaby33 wrote:
Just read the entire 14th amendment, several times. Its an attempt to nail down citizenship [...]

It's not an "attempt" - it's the highest legal authority defining who is a citizen.

barnaby33 wrote:
Nothing in this thread, or what Timmay said via Zerohedge has anything to do with revoking or proving ones right to be an American.

Read the opening post:

Quote:
Nearly half of All Americans don't pay income taxes, does that mean they should lose their privilege ?

WTF is the "privilege of being American" if it isn't citizenship?

14th Amendment: If you are born here, you are a citizen.

Done.

And in anticipation of any idiotic follow up questions: There is no Constitutional way to "revoke" citizenship except by an individual voluntarily giving it up. And there is no test required to "prove" one is worthy after citizenship is granted.

The US Constitution defines who is an American.

So like I said when I started "being a $%@#" :
As an American citizen, I respect the Constitution.

But if you want to give precedence to some sloppy, partisan, ad-homenim attack article based upon distorted peseudo-facts, go right ahead.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on February 26, 2012 - 6:55pm.

we could maintain citizenship for everyone, but like airlines, divide it up business class, coach, first class, ultra first class, baggage class. You pay you play.

what's a "second class citizen"?

Submitted by barnaby33 on February 28, 2012 - 6:11am.

But if you want to give precedence to some sloppy, partisan, ad-homenim attack article based upon distorted peseudo-facts, go right ahead.

No, I just want you to make a cogent argument. I read the entire thread. My interpretation of the OP's intent was to ask a philosophical question. You are the one who resorted to knee jerk one line answers. Nobody else here argued the definition of citizenship.

There are very few facts to be had, this was an opinion piece. Both on the part of the treasury secretary, and the OP. You've added nothing to this.
Josh

Submitted by harvey on February 28, 2012 - 7:26am.

barnaby33 wrote:
No, I just want you to make a cogent argument.

Which you haven't even attempted to do yourself.

Quote:
I read the entire thread. My interpretation of the OP's intent was to ask a philosophical question.

One that was already asked early in our history and answered definitively by the Constitution and the courts.

You seem to be suggesting that the Constitution has nothing to with "being American" - that there is some other standard or meaning. There is not. At least not in the real world, although you may find people (like the OP) who live in wingnut land where apparently there is a distinction between America and the Constitution.

Quote:
You've added nothing to this.

And what have you added? You have said nothing except to offer opinions about my comments and call me names. Is that your standard for constructive conversation?

My whole point - which was made quite well even though you refuse to accept it - is that "this" is a non-debate, and a pointless topic. This whole "50% don't pay income taxes" meme is a propaganda myth based on a mathematical fallacy (See the Jon Stewart link above for a more detailed explanation.)

Submitted by briansd1 on February 28, 2012 - 10:23am.

pri_dk wrote:

14th Amendment: If you are born here, you are a citizen.

Done.

And in anticipation of any idiotic follow up questions: There is no Constitutional way to "revoke" citizenship except by an individual voluntarily giving it up. And there is no test required to "prove" one is worthy after citizenship is granted.


Quite well said.

There have been exeptions before, for example American women who married Asians.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cable_Act

walterwhite wrote:
we could maintain citizenship for everyone, but like airlines, divide it up business class, coach, first class, ultra first class, baggage class. You pay you play.

That's the reality of it.

walterwhite wrote:

what's a "second class citizen"?

An example would be women before they could vote. I'm sure there are other examples.

The Constitution is just a piece of paper. The fair and just application of the law of the land is a work in progress.

there is more to a constitution than its words, as Justice Antonin Scalia told the Senate Judiciary Committee in October. “Every banana republic in the world has a bill of rights,” he said.

“The bill of rights of the former evil empire, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, was much better than ours,” he said, adding: “We guarantee freedom of speech and of the press. Big deal. They guaranteed freedom of speech, of the press, of street demonstrations and protests, and anyone who is caught trying to suppress criticism of the government will be called to account. Whoa, that is wonderful stuff!”

“Of course,” Justice Scalia continued, “it’s just words on paper, what our framers would have called a ‘parchment guarantee.’ ”

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/07/us/we-...

Submitted by sdduuuude on February 29, 2012 - 1:53am.

I think there is a distinction between "the privlege of being American" (i.e. being a citizen) and "protected by the constitution" and "paying your taxes"

Even if you don't pay your taxes, you are still a citizen.

Even if you are not a citizen, if you are on US Soil, you are, for the most part, protected by the constitution.

What would I do for the privilege of having US Citizenship? Not sure since I never really had to do anything nor lived anywhere else.

Do we pay taxes for the right of being American or do foreigners make great sacrifices for the right to pay taxes to the US gov ?

Sadly, it sounds as if Geitner is suggesting the latter - that paying taxes in the US is a privilege because we get to fund the best bailouts in the world.

I appreciate the irony pointed out by the OP of Geitner calling for high-net-worth individuals to pay more taxes.

I, personally, would make the deep sacrifice of paying less tax and suffering without the amazing government "services" that would go unfunded.

Submitted by Veritas on February 29, 2012 - 9:24pm.

briansd1 wrote:
There also could be a penalty to being American.

You have to pay income taxes on your wordwide income, so it's not so easy to give up American citizenship. There is a process to renounce it.

As far as income taxes, I think that it's only fair to pay proportional to the share of wealth you get from society.

That's an interesting way to look at it Brian, since many people do not pay for the share of the wealth they get from society at both ends of the political spectrum including free medical, etc.

"In response to Occupy Wall Street's protest slogan of "We are the 99 percent," conservatives have started an online counterprotest called "We are the 53 percent" -- a reference to the 53 percent of Americans who pay federal income tax, on top of the payroll, local, sales and other taxes that other Americans pay."

http://news.yahoo.com/numbers-47-percent...

That does not seem fair to me.

Submitted by harvey on February 29, 2012 - 9:33pm.

That 53 percent thing is old news.

One question: Is the "50%" the number of people or the number of households?

Cuz there's 5 people in my house. Three of them don't pay taxes. That's MORE than 50 percent!

Should I deport my 7 year old because she hasn't earned the privilege?

Now that I think of it...Nana lives off social security. I guess she has to go too...

Submitted by Veritas on February 29, 2012 - 9:36pm.

Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein Are Stinking Rich
By Erin Sherbert
Tue., Dec. 27 2011 at 3:00 PM

"According to the Center For Responsive Politics, our San Francisco reps have a total net worth of greater than $310 million. That includes Pelosi's whopping net worth of $196,299,990; Sen. Dianne Feinstein's $93,707,020; and Congresswoman Jackie Speier, who is the 31st-richest rep, with a net worth of $20,527,999."

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news...

"Nancy Pelosi – The Rich Wont Pay Taxes Because They Want To Be Immortal"

http://lybio.net/nancy-pelosi-the-rich-w...

Submitted by Veritas on February 29, 2012 - 9:38pm.

Some things are worth repeating. The rest of your argument is unremarkable.

Submitted by scaredyclassic on February 29, 2012 - 10:06pm.

Women needed an amendment to vote, so the constitution only applied to men, regarding votes...so now I'm wondering, do hermaphrodites legally have voting rights or do we need another amendment?

Submitted by harvey on February 29, 2012 - 10:08pm.

Do you have an answer to my question?

50% people, or 50% of households?

Because it matters.

One answer means there is relevance to the statistic.

The other means it's all a lie.

Step up and answer. Or are you a coward?

(I hear chicken noises...is that you?)

Submitted by hslinger on March 1, 2012 - 12:10am.

I gladly let a bunch of ignorant fools who think they are fighting for our "freedoms" die in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Isn't that enough? If not I'll gladly let more die in Iran if you are stupid enough to believe the GOP, have at it dumb asses.

Submitted by hslinger on March 1, 2012 - 12:22am.

kcal09 wrote:
Nearly half of All Americans don't pay income taxes, does that mean they should lose their privilege ?
You should lose the privilege of breathing our air since you're so brain dead that you actually buy into the Fux news bullshite.

Please explain how FICA taxes are not Federal income taxes. Stop being Stucking Fupid.

Republicans are against abortion because they need retards like you to vote for them. Do the world a favor and abort yourself.

Submitted by briansd1 on March 1, 2012 - 12:52pm.

Veritas wrote:
Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein Are Stinking Rich

So are Al Gore and John Kerry.

That makes it all the more admirable for them to support progressive causes.

I don't begrudge rich conservatives for being greedy. Makes financial sense.

But then you have the working class conservatives who vote right-wing but can't seem to prevent their daughters from getting knocked up at 16....

Submitted by Veritas on March 1, 2012 - 1:40pm.

walterwhite wrote:
Women needed an amendment to vote, so the constitution only applied to men, regarding votes...so now I'm wondering, do hermaphrodites legally have voting rights or do we need another amendment?

They get two votes.

Submitted by Veritas on March 1, 2012 - 1:40pm.

briansd1 wrote:
Veritas wrote:
Nancy Pelosi, Dianne Feinstein Are Stinking Rich

So are Al Gore and John Kerry.

That makes it all the more admirable for them to support progressive causes.

I don't begrudge rich conservatives for being greedy. Makes financial sense.

But then you have the working class conservatives who vote right-wing but can't seem to prevent their daughters from getting knocked up at 16....

Good point Brian.

Submitted by CricketOnTheHearth on March 1, 2012 - 3:03pm.

Reality Check, Please.

As pointed out above, *all* workers pay Social Security taxes on *all* wage income up to $110,100, regardless of their actual income. The nominal SS tax rate is 7.25% (less these days due to temporary cuts) for wage-earners. Double that for the self-employed.

The federal minimum wage is $7.25. Some states have higher minimum wages, many don't. We'll use this figure for now.

For federal income tax, the total amount of income which is exempt from taxes (Standard Deduction + exemption(s)) is:

Single, no kids: $9,500
Married filing jointly, no kids: $19,000
Married filing jointly, 2 kids: $26,400

Suppose we have a minimum-wage worker who is lucky (!) enough to be able to work that job full-time, and gets 1 week off per year (51 weeks x 40 hrs a week)--> they work 2,040 hours a year. This nets them $14,790 gross income.

However, it's more usual that minimum-wage workers work 2 or more jobs. Let's say they are again lucky (!) and able to work 60 hours/week. That's 3,060 hours a year, which nets them $22,185.

It's very easy to see a scenario where a young childless couple, or even a couple with children, are both working minimum-wage jobs. There's a good chance one or both of those jobs is *not* full-time. Not by any wish of their own, but because many minimum-wage jobs simply do not come in the "full-time" flavor.

Thus, it is entirely possible for a young couple, with our without children, to be working and paying in Social Security taxes, but still coming in under the Federal exemption wire and thus not paying Federal income taxes.

And I'm willing to bet that those people, if you told them they could no longer enjoy the benefits of American citizenship "because you don't pay any income taxes", would pick up the nearest implement of destruction and earnestly beg to differ with you.

Submitted by harvey on March 1, 2012 - 3:15pm.

Still don't have an answer to a very relevant question:

50% of people, or 50% of households?

Veritas didn't answer. He sent me a PM with some profanity and then ran off whimpering (I see him hiding behind Rush Limbaugh though - you'd think someone could easily hide behind an object that big...)

So can we get some genuine 'truth' ?

50% of people, or 50% of households?

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