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May. 30th, 2012

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2 letters in conversation regarding art prices... from the New York Times

This is how it works.

A non-profit institution holds an art auction fundraiser.

The wealthy attendees pay a $1000 each to be lavishly wined and dined at the event and have the opportunity to bid on the artwork. Let's say one of the artworks 'sells' for $10,000. The institution raises $10,000, the buyer gets to deduct $10,000 from income taxes and the artist who created and donated the artwork worked at a loss because she/he is only allowed to deduct the cost of materials. If the artist worked with 'found' materials the deduction allowed by law is $0. Talk about inequality!

This is how are current tax laws work and the wealthy know it.

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Yes. And, I would like to add that the "artist" is told that her or his contribution to the non-profit fundraising event will provide valuable "exposure" to art collectors who will then seek to visit that artist's studio and actually purchase work from the artist; but, that never happens because the wealthy "art collectors" are interested only in their tax deductions and the opportunity to be seen at a social event and the chance to acquire art at less than market prices, or possibly provide revenue to their favorite non-profit organization. Afterward, the "art collector" brags to the artist (who derived nothing of value from the transaction) that they have that artist's work in their "collection."

Mar. 3rd, 2012

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(no subject)

Really this article shouts so loudly the BS from the never-reformed 'me-generation's' (and shortly after) projected guilt. Of course there are wonderful exceptions, but the 'me' generation, and those just after them, which enjoyed the post-war boom and beyond, generally speaking doesn't care about those younger than them. Little wonder the youngins are so mistrustful. For example, my peers and younger have gone overseas to fight questionable wars, only to come home to a unsympathetic and mismanaged aging country. 
 
People said similar things about the so-called 'x' generation. My childhood 'friends' who got caught up in their greed and bought into the real estate mirage saw their dreams denied and now... the Y generation will likely have more in common with the 'greatest generation' that lived though hardship and eventually rebuilt our country. I have no sympathy for greedy folks, complaining as above, who don't want to do their share for the place which made their success possible, and who would rather rob youth of their opportunities (for example by refusing to pay for services such as public education or public health, or even infrastructure). Those of us who are living our truth see so clearly that the tirade above is simply excuses to pass the blame/buck. I have to admire, though, that the author is willing to stand up and be counted... as an idiot!


Re: http://www.americanthinker.com/2012/02/dont_be_evil.html

Feb. 12th, 2012

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(no subject)

Considering that we spend over 50% of the federal budget on the military and military related expenditures, shouldn't we cut that FIRST and then try save on domestic programs?
I don't know about anyone else, but it seems like the Iraq and Afghanistan wars have not exactly improved our standard of living (or that of most Iraqis and Afghans).
I'd also like to see some accountability for medicaid and medicare programs, especially when it comes to the purchase of medical equipment and prescription drugs. Seems like the biggest customer in the world for these items (the Federal Government) is getting really lousy deals. I particular, oxygen and oxygen equipment which is RENTED rather then purchased. This raises the price dramatically.
Raise taxes. Tax churches. Tax the wealthy. End loopholes for corporations. End the oil depletion allowance. End tax breaks for agri-businesses. End the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Cut the military budget. Allow Americans to buy drugs from the cheapest source. Limit campaign spending. End the electoral college system: One person, one vote. Tax lobbyists.

It is hard to understand the resentment by these people against increasing taxes. From what I read here, hardly any of them have a high enough income to be affected anyway. They are not going to become wealthy in the next few years, and most of them will become even more dependent on SS and Medicare.

What they should be concerned about is how SS and medicare funds are being managed. these are not entitlements as the conservatives would have you believe. They are insurance programs and congress has mismanaged them. The money that should have been invested in treasuries and high grade equities has been looted to pay for those same conservatives pet programs which also buy them votes. The Bush tax cuts drained much of the reserves and the invasion and occupation of Iraq has taken even more.

Keep in mind that the Bush administration did not want to raise taxes so they sold debt to finance this fiasco. Now these same conservatives and their followers are complaining about the administrations spending, spending that they themselves voted for, and also for that smaller government which cut back on the regulatory agencies that monitored the banks and brokers.

OK folks, vote in your Tea Potty reps and stop collecting that money.

One of the oldest criticisms of democracy is that the people will inevitably drain the treasury by demanding more spending than taxes. The theory is that citizens who get more than they pay for will vote for politicians who promise to increase spending. Of course with so few people who are disenfranchised not voting, one can see what direction this is going.

Dean P. Lacy, a professor of political science at Dartmouth College, has identified a twist on that theme in American politics over the last generation. Support for Republican candidates, who generally promise to cut government spending, has increased since 1980 in states where the federal government spends more than it collects. The greater the dependence, the greater the support for Republican candidates.

Conversely, states that pay more in taxes than they receive in benefits tend to support Democratic candidates. And Professor Lacy found that the pattern could not be explained by demographics or social issues.

“It’s hard to beat up on the government when they’ve been so good to you,” a tea-party supporter finally recently said. “I’ve never really thought about it, I guess.”

Jan. 18th, 2012

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(no subject)

I think that the printed word and a lot of spoken word are complicated semantic traps of one sort or another, (English, the language, etc) that they just produce certain ways of thinking, sort of like each question has it's own answer built-into it. The logic underlying all that is all screwed up, and everybody would be better off if everything was just totally ambiguous.
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(no subject)

The tribal entity exists so as to abide in harmony with its environment. It's something that benefits everyone, not just this one structure.

Dec. 15th, 2011

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(no subject)

"The lips of wisdom are closed,

except to the ears of Understanding"

Jul. 7th, 2011

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(no subject)

Not that it matters, but I must be the only one who is consistent in my beliefs: I think that gays should be able to marry (and enjoy tax benefits, medical decision making i.e. next-of-kin status, etc, as well as their own cultural traditions, in this pluralistic society). I also believe that the Mormons and Hippies or whomever should be able to co-habitate – and define it them selves – freely. (The tax code will have to respond. Who am I to tell some group that they can’t form a unit and, if need be, consider themselves ‘married’. It might be very convenient.

I’ve seen this work, of course – head to countries where polygamy is not so shunned, Asia, for example. What bothers me is the coercion in cult-groups, etc, and I can admit that freedom for an individual is a bias in my vision, a sort of ‘trumping right’, for example the right to LEAVE any ‘union’ or group. .

All the arguments about bestiality are obviously lame, because animals can’t be said to share our plane of consciousness, reason, or choices, it is not a fair ‘slippery slope’.

And as for gays raising children, the idea that gay people can’t make great parents is pathetic. I’m all for protecting children, it is a culture-war issue, and children with loving parents are the best thing you can do for them. Call me a pragmatist. The right’s unspoken (sub-text) position seems to be about reducing the ‘other-thinking’ people’s existence and influence, politically speaking. By isolating others the hope is to marginalize ‘other-thinking’ people and maintain or establish a hegemony in our pluralistic society.

Very interesting post. I’ve been following this debate closely on the news, lately.

Karmically, if I may use the term, it’s interesting that the Mormon church has been the single greatest contributor to the fight against gay marriage.

Nov. 29th, 2010

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All the girls are yours. Your brain is God.

Only the “larval,” intellectually and philosophically backward humans, would choose to remain in “the fouled nest.” Welcome death with the same energetic excitement as other challenges in your life. I'm outside looking in.

Jun. 21st, 2010

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Andy G.

Ah, Andy G, the artist I love to hate, and hate to love.

I love this man!
I hate him. 

No really there is all good in him, the recovered alcoholic thinks.  Or the guy at a cocktail party telling a girl the same, because hey, what bastard doesn't enjoy pretty leaves or ice arranged in a fantastic, momentary  way.  Tre Romantic

Yet there is something missing, you have to admit.  Yes we need the beauty, but please shut up about it!  I'm holding my tongue, it's more a directive to go $0#@% a $%#$@)#.  Or maybe he does that I don't know.  But seriously, andy,

Nov. 2nd, 2009

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(no subject)

Sitting Bull was as good an authority on our economy as anyone, even if he wasn't an economist and even though he died in 1890. After the Lakota were defeated, he joined Buffalo Bill's Wild West show for a season, but he never got ahead financially. He gave the bulk of hdsfis earnings to the street urchins who hung around the show. He was shocked that a nation powerful enough to conquer his people couldn't or wouldn't feed its own future. The white man was good at production, he concluded, but bad at distribution.

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