Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Some Questions for Democrats

How much welfare is enough and how should it be structured? Not just AFDC but Social Security, Medicare, food stamps, HUD, Fannie and Freddie, Gov. education etc.

How much of their own wealth should people be required to spend on their own medical care before the state kicks in?

What marginal tax rates are acceptable for the what incomes (low and high)? Right now low income people face huge marginal tax rates. I am getting at incentives here.

Does FDIC create bad incentives that might require an eventual virtual gov take over of banking? If so how do we keep lending from becoming too politicized and corrupt?

Is there a level of regulation and complexity where more regulation is counter productive?  What is that level?
Is too regulated to fail an achievable goal? 

Single payer and monopsony the seems to be the long range goal of Obamacare, how do you think that will work?

3 comments:

DHFabian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DHFabian said...

On govt expenditures, we can find the money for vitally important human needs programs by ending all corporate welfare, restoring the free enterprise system. Since the Reagan administration, we have lost billions of dollars to "tax relief" for rich corporations on the theory that it would result in a massive creation of "good, family supporting jobs." It didn't work.

We need to join those more advanced nations that have successful welfare (by any other name) policies. Sometimes we do need to put the best interests of the country ahead of the whims of the privileged. I have no qualms about paying taxes to help those in need, but I do have issues with paying taxes so the rich don't have to.

We've seen the results of legitimate welfare programs -- and the consequences of ending them. As a result of "reform," the infant mortality rate among our poor now surpasses that of most Third World nations, while the life expectancy of our poor has declined below that of other modern nations. AFDC used a mere 6% of the federal budget; compare this with what is now going into our wars, corp "tax relief," etc. With legit welfare, 80% of AFDC recipients were able to voluntarily quit welfare in under 5 years, then repay their benefits via their own taxes. Homelessness was very rare in the US. Most recipients were able to obtain education/training. Many lives were saved, productivity increased and the overall quality of life here became the highest in the world.

Most people have a sense of "the common good." We know that a range of real life circumstances (like the mass outsourcing of our jobs) can leave people unable to provide for themselves. We DO feel a sense of responsibility for fellow citizens.

JW Ogden said...

@DHFabian Has their been a rise in infant mortality since welfare reform? Medicaid is still in place and from my reading much of the difference in due to the following factors:

1. The way still births are counted.
2. Fertility treatments being much more available in the USA, resulting in multiple births.
3. Racial factors that effect multiple births. People of African decent average more multiple births Asians fewer. A data point here is despite being the racial group with the least access to healthcare, Hispanics have lower infant mortality than whites.