Governments are broke, and they’re only going to get more and more rapacious. From Jeff Thomas at internationalman.com:
International Man: Before 1913 there was no income tax, and the United States was a much freer country. Initially, the government sold the federal income tax to the American people as something only the rich would have to pay.
Jeff Thomas: Yes, exactly. It always begins this way. The average person is always happy to see the rich taken down a peg, so this makes the introduction of the concept of theft by the government more palatable. Once people have gotten used to the concept and accept it as being perfectly reasonable, then it’s time to begin to drop the bar as to who “the rich” are. Ultimately, the middle class are always the real target.
Continue reading →
Posted in Banking, Business, Collapse, Debt, Economics, Economy, Governments, Investing, Politics, Taxes
Tagged Income tax, Property taxes, Tax havens
The government does its best to kill self-reliance. From Eric Peters at ericpetersautos.com:
One of the subtler – and most vicious – ways the government renders us more dependent on it is by rendering us less able to help ourselves and one another.
I just got the second of my twice-yearly bills from the government demanding about $1,000 in rent – it is styled “property tax” – on what is absurdly styled “my” house, in order to be allowed to continue living in it (hence rent, notwithstanding I am technically the “owner” of my house, having paid the former owner in full for it many years ago).
It’s a lot of money for me – and for most people.
It’s also just about the same amount of money a family member needs to cover rent they can’t pay this month.
Continue reading →
Illinois property owners are seeing an increasingly large share of their incomes, which are not growing, going to property taxes. From Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner at wirepoints.com:
By: Ted Dabrowski and John Klingner
A lethal combination of rising property taxes and stagnant incomes has forced many Illinoisans to rethink their relationship with their state. More than 1.5 million net residents have already fled the state since 2000 – and you can’t blame others for thinking about joining them.
Property taxes have become punitive in Illinois. We’ve written about how these taxes have destroyed the equity in people’s homes across the state. Many families have done the math, and whether they’re in the struggling south suburbs of Chicago or the affluent North Shore, they’ve decided to leave Illinois behind.
The traditional method for measuring the burden of property taxes is to look at a household’s property tax bill and compare it to a home’s value. Under this method, Illinoisans pay the highest property taxes in the nation. At 2.7 percent, Illinoisans pay far more than residents in neighboring states – twice more than those in Missouri and three times more than residents in Indiana.
That fact is outrageous on its own.
The yield spreads between lower and higher quality bonds are expanding, which is not usually a good sign for financial markets. From MN Gordon at acting-man.com:
Investment Grade Junk
All is now bustle and hubbub in the late months of the year. This goes for the stock market too. If you recall, on September 22nd the S&P 500 hit an all-time high of 2,940. This was nearly 100 points above the prior high of 2,847, which was notched on January 26th. For a brief moment, it appeared the stock market had resumed its near decade long upward trend.
We actually did not believe in the validity of the September breakout attempt: the extremely large divergence between the broad market and the narrow big cap leadership was one of many signs that an internal breakdown in the stock market was well underway. It is probably legitimate to refer to the January 2018 high as the “orthodox” stock market peak – the point at which most stocks topped out. [PT]
Continue reading →
Posted in Business, Capitalism, Collapse, Debt, Economics, Economy, Financial markets, Governments, Investing, Money
Tagged Corporate bonds, Exit taxes, GE bonds, Property taxes