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Independence Day, 1776, July 2, July 4, Brexit, British, freedom

Brexit 1776-2017

These united States* got their start, officially, on July 2, 1776. That’s when the Second Continental Congress voted to separate from King George’s government across the water. But it was two days later when that same Congress approved its formal Declaration, and it was the wording of that Declaration that






New York Times, taxes, tax, libraries, tax cuts, big government, public services, free markets

Ballots & Books

The people of Roseburg, Oregon, aren’t paying enough in taxes. That’s the upshot of Kirk Johnson’s recent New York Times article, “Where Anti-Tax Fervor Means ‘All Services Will Cease.’” “For generations in America,” readers are informed, “small cities . . . declared their optimism and civic purpose with grand libraries






Connecticut, taxes, revenue, budget, tax and spend, wealth, common sense

No Rich No More

Connecticut has a budget problem. There’s not enough money to spend. WTNH-TV in New Haven paraphrased the situation along with the response of Connecticut’s very progressive governor: “Income tax revenue collapses; Malloy says taxing the rich doesn’t work.” The news story explains, “Connecticut’s state budget woes are compounding with collections






taxes, tax cut, Trump, gift, give away, rights, growth, economics

Death and . . .

It’s a sure thing — that most folks will like President Trump’s tax cuts. Though we don’t yet know all the details. When it comes to taxes, less is more.  That is, if you’re paying taxes. It is no great mystery that people like it when their own taxes are reduced.






Oregon, tax, taxes, corporate, corporation, illustration, Measure 97

Taxation to What End?

Oregonians have quite a few ballot measures this year. And only one of them seems obviously nutty: Measure 97. It would raise taxes on the very biggest of companies. The richest — that is, those with $25 million in sales. Among the reasons given for this excise hike, which is






tax code, power, politicians, transparency, illustration

The Year of Translucency

Barack Obama promised transparency in government. He didn’t deliver. But others stepped up to the plate. It’s now possible to see through a lot of political, elitist, and bureaucratic bunk courtesy of fugitives like Snowden, convicts like Manning, and citizens using FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) procedures. And we are






Uber, Lyft, Taxi, protection, tax, crony, cronyism, illustration

Whose Side Are They On?

Excuse me if I drive over familiar roadways. But we are witnessing one of the great revolutions in human cooperation. And our governments and politicians are working mightily to block traffic. I refer, of course, to Uber and Lyft and the like. The innovation that these companies bring to market?






Tom Paine, Thomas Paine, Laurent Dabos

Trying Our Souls

In Common Sense, his incredible hit pamphlet of 1776, Tom Paine appealed to “the inhabitants of America”: O ye that love mankind! . . . Every spot of the old world is overrun with oppression. Freedom hath been hunted round the globe. Asia, and Africa, have long expelled her. Europe






Emancipation Day, tax, taxes

Procrastinators’ Weekend

Usually, April 15 is the deadline date, in these United States, to file taxes or apply for an extension. This year it is April 18. Why? Many of us think of the Fifteenth of April as Tax Day. It seems strange and arbitrary when it is jiggered with. And kind






tax, taxes, charity, IRS, I.R.S., Alain de Botton, branding, rebranding, illustration, folly, Common Sense

Rebranding the Odious?

Being a clever person is hard work. Many of the truly clever things about everyday life have already been said. New and innovative cleverness? A rare thing indeed. But if you are in the business of being clever, that puts you in a pickle, if “being relevant” and “worth our






tax the rich, tax, pay, paid, paying, Common Sense

The B. S. Theory

Bernie Sanders is worse than merely wrong about the rich not paying their fair share of taxes. It’s we, the much-lauded “Ninety-nine Percenters,” who don’t pay enough! At least, when we figure taxes paid against direct subsidies/services rendered: taxes minus transfers. And, according to the Congressional Budget Office, only the






Bernie Sanders, Glass Steagall, ratings, agency, Common Sense, illustration, Paul Jacob, James Gill

Berating Bernie?

Bernie Sanders has risen in the polls. He may even beat Hillary Clinton in the first caucus and primary contests for the Democratic presidential nomination. A cause for celebration! Witnessing a huge hunk of Americans accept Mrs. Clinton, the consummate and corrupt insider, is too disheartening. Bernie Sanders, for all






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