Middle Age Ramblings

Where I Share My Thoughts On This Journey Called Life

Archive for the tag “Tax”

Free College

President Obama announced yesterday a proposal to give free community college to anyone who is “willing to work for it”. The specifics of the program at this point are vague. It is proposed that students who keep up a 2.5 GPA and are making progress to complete their degrees in a 3 years or less could receive this help if the state the community college is in opts into the program.

This is because the Federal Government is going to pay 75% of the tuition and State governments would pick up 25%.

This program is modeled after a program began last year in the state of Tennessee. About 58,000 of the states roughly 62,000 high school seniors have applied for the program. It is my understanding that the Tennessee program is funded by Lottery monies.

There were no specifics given in the Presidents announcement about how this program would be funded. I would be interested in finding out how many billions of dollars this is going to cost the taxpayers, you and me.

I fear that this might be another unfunded mandate handed down by the Federal government for the state and local governments to bear the burden of.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t have any problem  with assisting children from underprivileged families in order for them to get an education. A good education, if the individual applies what they have learned, is the best way for a person to change their lives and break the cycle of poverty.

However, just guaranteeing an education doesn’t guarantee a job in the field they get their degree in. There are people in this economy who are under employed. Meaning they are working in a field that is not what they studied, and are making less money  because there are no jobs available in their field.

I know young adults with degrees who are working jobs making $8-9 per hour because there were no jobs available in their chosen field. They should be making $22,000 to $25,000 per year at least based on estimates.

I fear this is another in a long list of education programs, both Democratic and Republican, design to “improve education”. However, government has been largely unsuccessful at improving education. That is why we have so many failing schools and failing students. While I don’t have any answers for this problem, I don’t think another bureaucratic program is the answer because most of the money will be spent on the bureaucracy created to run the program and very little of the money will actually get to where it is needed.

I have rambled on this a good bit and I appreciate you sticking around to read all of it. As I said I don’t have any good answers for our education problems, but I know that the government solutions have not worked before. Maybe this one will, but I doubt it

I am certain this program will create much discussion on both sides. Please share your opinion below about this new idea of the Presidents. I look forward to reading them.

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Tax Cuts And Basic Economics

I’ve been fed up with the junk that goes on in Washington for some time now. I usually manage to keep my mouth shut, but there is only so much stupidity I can stand.

This week the President, Barak Obama, gave a speech about the economy and tax policy. He proposes that we keep the Bush-era tax cuts, but only for those Americans who make less than $250,000 a year.

Let’s go back to simple basic economics and see if I can explain this. There are many entrepreneurs in this country who are sole proprietors or in simple partnerships in the businesses. Most of these business owners make more than $250,000 per year.

At the most basic level of economics, which by the way almost nobody in Washington seems to understand, there are only 3 things that small business owner can do with his profits.

First of all he can save it. There’s a novel idea. By saving and investing part of his profits, He puts part of his profits to work to build the economy. However, the Congress and the President have made sure that they will get their share of the profits of those investments in the form of taxes.

Secondly, he can spend his profits on personal bills, a new car for his wife, light bill, phone bill, put food on his families table. He can also use that money to expand his business and hire more employees.

Finally, he can pay taxes. Of course there are tax consequences with the first 2 items. As I’ve already mentioned, there are taxes on the profits from investments. Then there are taxes on spending in the form of sales taxes. Lastly we have the dreaded income tax. The President wants to raise taxes on everyone making more than $250,000 per year as I’ve already mentioned.

The effects are clear. If you increase the amount of taxes there is less money to save and spend. This means for the small business owner that there is less money to invest in the business which translates into fewer jobs.

I’ve had several jobs in my life. Some of those jobs were with large corporations. Some of those jobs, however, were working for small business owners. There are more jobs provided by small businesses than the larger companies. The bottom line is this. I’ve never had a poor man hire me for a job. I’ve always been hired by a business owner who was wealthy enough and successful enough to create jobs and hire me. Mr. President if you want to take more money from these job creators, then it is obvious to me that you fully intend to completely tank this economy.

I hope the American voters have better sense than to reelect this President!

As always your opinions on this subject are welcome. I try to read all responses even though I will not be able to respond to all of them.

 

Tell Me What You Think #2

This is the second in a series where I’m asking my readers to think a little about an issue that is being discussed. It may be religious  or it may not be. Just depends on what’s in the news ans what catches my eye.

What do you think about the rising gas prices?

Any thoughts on the possible causes for the increase lately?

Any ideas for possible solutions to the problem?

After I read some of your ideas, I will try to come up with some of my own and post them later.

Thanks for your ideas!

Mike

The Great Debt Fiasco

I have watched the events in Washington about the debt ceiling with mixed emotions. The way this has been handled speaks volumes about what’s wrong in Washington. We have a President that is trying to turn this country into a European style socialists republic, and a divided Congress that can’t seem to find a way to make a decision. Don’t get me wrong, this is not easy to fix, but to do nothing is wrong as well.

Keep in mind, I don’t have the answers that will fix this problem. If I did I wouldn’t be working for a living. If you’ve read my column about the price of gasoline, you know that I think we need to vote the whole bunch out of office and start over. I am neither Democrat or Republican. I am an American who is sick and tired of the way Washington messes me and all the other middle-income American over.

When I think about this problem as logically as I can, I see that there are sacrifices that need to be made. There is going to have to be some cuts in entitlement programs. There also may have to be some changes in the tax code to increase revenues. I cannot afford to pay any more taxes, however, we as a nation have allowed our leaders to do this to us, and we will now reap as a nation what we have sown.

That’s my rant for the day. What’s your opinion?

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