Taxes and Development

12:24 AM
The Human Development Index combines normalized measures of life expectancy, literacy, educational attainment, and GDP per capita for countries worldwide. It is claimed as a standard means of measuring human development—a concept that, according to the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), refers to the process of widening the options of persons, giving them greater opportunities for education, health care, income, employment, etc. The basic use of HDI is to measure a country's development.





Source: The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) "groups 30 member countries sharing a commitment to the market economy. The OECD plays a prominent role in fostering governance in corporate activity. It helps governments to ensure the responsiveness of key economic areas with sectoral monitoring. By deciphering emerging issues and identifying policies that work, it helps policy-makers adopt strategic orientations."



In the first part are the 15 most developed countries in the world, in green the top 3.

In the second part are this same countries from most to least taxed, in red the 3 with higher taxes.


As is commonly asked by low tax proponents for one example, here are not one but 13 instances in which higher taxes not only don't interfere with the development of a society but correlate in grand measure with its prosperity. It is remarkable that only one of the countries (Japan) that have a superior development than us pays lower taxes and the other 13 have a higher rate.
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The Death of Reaganomics

2:47 PM
As the now discredited “ Trickle-Down Theory”, also known as the economic policies of “Reaganomics”, “Supply-side Economics” or “Horse and Sparrow Theory” seems condemned to live inside the realm of peoples fantasies as all sane economist fight to keep disassociated with it, it has become an economic hot potato!; we seem to be entering a new era of economic policies. One that may signal a drastic change towards development and sustainability and away from the narrow scope of corporate gains over any other consideration. The fallacy over the discussion centered on lowering taxes for business in hopes to restart growth has been exposed by analysis. The data recollected from the past 50 years convincingly refutes any arguments that cutting taxes for the rich will stimulate the economy or improve the conditions of the middle and lower classes. Tax cuts to the top have no correlation with economic growth rate, income growth rate, hourly wage growth rate, or change in unemployment.













In conclusion; the health of an economic system seems to have no relation with the tax burden of it's corporations, the true consequences of sheltering the elite from taxation and the diversion of public funds to private hands through the delusion of national security and future growth are a constant detriment to social progress, measured by the substandard quality of life experienced by the population at large.

A new generation has spoken... It's time we listen!.
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Why Do They Hate Us?

4:36 PM
The constant portrayal by the fundamentalist right of Barack Obama as a weak president for accepting a gift from Hugo Chavez and his willingness to talk with unfriendly leaders leads to reflect on the age old question of, why do they hate us?, and why we don't really need another strong leader?

To honor reason I'll bypass the envy explanation or the idea that a couple of demented religious zealots are sitting in a cave somewhere in Afghanistan plotting against us just because they can't stand the fact that... I don't know... here men don't grow beards and women wear pants.


So, why do they hate us?

After 2 decades living abroad and experiencing how things really were on the receiving end of one of the darkest chapters in American foreign policy it's easy for me to answer that question. I am an eye witness to the toppling by the CIA of a democratic government and the implementation of a right wing repressive military dictatorship, the suspension of all civil rights, the state death squads traveling the country summarily executing dissidents (politically active citizens that believed in the democratic process). Soccer stadiums used to concentrate the soon to be members of the disappeared lists, the free press braking under repression and becoming just a tool for official indoctrination, the heartbreaking sight of all those mothers, wifes and daughters of the vanished marching in the streets with pictures of their loved ones; can we here just imagine the desolation in their hearts?; can we walk just for a minute in their shoes?.
Ever even wondered how might it feel to drive down the street past a building complex where the only thing to be heard is very loud music knowing that it's being used to mask the screams of the ones being tortured inside.
I saw the implementation of a brutal capitalist model that moved the poor back to the slums and made a few collaborators very rich, and witnessed trough the years, at the cost of thousand of lives, the complete and systematic transformation of a society until it was rendered politically sterile, just a shadow of what once was a vibrating political environment.





So why did all this atrocities happened?

Very simple, to protect the economic interests of two American corporations and the destruction of an alternative model that might be a bad example for the other countries in the region as stated in the pertinent White House and Pentagon documents declassified years later under the Freedom of Information Act and other initiatives.
This is not an isolated incident, after going through such an experience one begins to analyze other incidents around the world and a pattern begins to appear. One in which many of the circumstances are similar but just the actors are different; that is the day when the true objective of the American foreign policy shows its face.


The priorities of our foreign policy have been be presented as follows:

1.- Ensure that the world safe for American corporations.

2.- Enhancing the financial statements of defense contractors at home who have contributed generously to members of congress.

3.- Preventing the rise of any society that might serve as a successful example of an alternative to the capitalist model.

4.- Extending political and economic hegemony over as wide an area as possible.



What is the answer then?

It's the empire and all its nasty consequences. It has nothing to do with our freedoms or beliefs, it's people around the world that want our hands out of their natural resources and away from their governments. Just a look at the name for American in Spanish, gringo (green-go!), and the whole idea gets easily across.

Is Obama weak?. Not by any stretch of the imagination, He is pioneering a new approach that could be the beginning of a very long healing process between us and the people that has been affected by our pursuit of power and dominance.
To better protect our country against the foreign threat we don't need another strong president, we need one that will lay the foundation for a radical change in our policies both domestic and international; someone that will start the long road to bring us back from the disproportionate use of the worlds resources.
We use 25% of the worlds oil and other resources at only 5% of the population; this simply means that many people are going without so we can have double, this people are not giving us their resources voluntarily, we are taking them by force and as long as that stays that way we will remain in danger.


We are only responsible for the monstrosities that our government commits, for the others is the job of the citizens of those respective countries to force their governments to issue apologies and reparations as they see fit. For now if we want to lead... let's lead then!

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Immigration and Empire

1:10 PM
Latin America contributes the bulk of illegal immigrants so should be the focus for finding a solution instead of diverting attention and resources to groups from a different origin that contribute just a fraction to the problem. The composition of the undocumented population is as follows:

81% Latin America (57% Mexico)
9% Asia
6% Europe
4% The rest of the world



The idea that the problem must be tackled only from the domestic front just perpetuates it to the benefit of the centers of power, which are very motivated to leave things as they are. It's just a case of “cant have it both ways”; if domination of weaker countries for the benefit of business is the preferred goal, immigration problems are inevitable. Both go hand in hand.

The proposition that Mexico has to “clean house” is a valid one but it won't happen until the US policy towards it is reversed. No progressive government has been allowed across the border so no progress has been achieved.

Business is the primary reason the pressure against our border is of such magnitude, smuggling of people and infiltration of criminality just comes along for the ride.



The following list shows the highligh

ts of the US foreign policy related to the immigration issue, it's only a surface look to some of the progressive governments and movements crushed in the context of our foreign policy, this are only relatively recent actions that are the top of a long history of criminal intervention.

-Guatemala:
Intervention: Overthrow Government Jacobo Arbenz
Prompted by: negative impact on the interests of The United Fruit Company, risk of a successful example of an alternative to capitalism

-Brazil:
Intervention: Overthrow Government Joao Goulart
Prompted by: negative impact on the interests of ITT, adoption of an independent stand in foreign policy.


-Dominican Republic:
Intervention: Overthrow Government Juan Bosch
Prompted by: Regulation of foreign investment to control excessively exploitation of the countries resources. Policy restricting the persecution of Communists or those labeled that way unless they violated the law.

-Chile:

Intervention: Overthrown Government Salvador Allende
Prompted by: negative impact on the interests of Anaconda, Kennecott and ITT, risk of a successful example of an alternative to capitalism

-Nicaragua:
Intervention: Overthrow Government Sandinista Council
Prompted by: Forced fall of the Somoza Dynasty, risk of a successful example of an alternative to capitalism

-El Salvador:
Intervention: 6 billion dollars to avoid the fall of the immensely unpopular pro-elite government, risk of a successful example of an alternative to capitalism.

-Mexico:
Also known as “The Laboratory for Globalization” is the most successful of all covert interventions, after decades of keeping the "correct" party in power, Mexico has permanently been locked into pro US corporation policies by treaty ,NAFTA.
Right in time considering that the last presidential election almost ended with the Washington Men out of power and uncertainty of what will happen next time.




If a real solution for the problem is what we want this is how it should look:


1.- Let's get the CIA out of Latin America and allow the countries there to develop higher standards of living while the American corporations compete in a level field to lessen the immigration pressure .

2.- Penalize heavily the US industries that hire illegal immigrants to discourage the sucking in effect they produce.

3.- Maintain close ties with Mexico to to detect and control changes in the immigration pressure against the border in order to pinpoint the origin and use the OAS to find a remedy to the specific region.



We as citizens by not discussing (or in some cases denying) the root of the problem perpetuate the status quo and keep it's resolution at arms length and unreachable. As long as we keep the blindfold in it's place it will be “business as usual”



Freedom Outlet @ ZNet: Immigration and Empire
Freedom Outlet @ Facebook: Immigration and Empire

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To smother a dissenting voice to mitigate the cognitive dissonance evoked by free thought is to stand blindfolded in front of the immense horizon of social progress


Sid