Posts tagged ‘tax reform’

Why Bureaucracies Don’t Stop Terror

The Sayfullo Saipov case is another instance of serial institutional failure.

Of course Sayfullo Saipov “had been on the radar of federal authorities,” as the New York Times put it in a report that had the stink of inevitability on it.

Who else was on the radar of the relevant law-enforcement and intelligence agencies? Omar Mateen, Syed Farook’s social circle, Nidal Hasan, Adam Lanza, the 2015 Garland attackers, the Boston Marathon bombers . . .

The 2015 Paris attackers were “on the radar” of French authorities, as were the Charlie Hebdo killers. The Copenhagen terrorists were known to local authorities. Man Haron Monis, who staged an attack in Sydney, had written a letter to Australia’s attorney general inquiring about whether he’d get into legal trouble for communicating with ISIS. The men behind the Quebec car-ramming and the shooting at parliament were known to Canadian authorities. Mehdi Nemmouche, who murdered four peoples at the Jewish Museum in Brussels, was a convicted armed robber who was under surveillance after traveling back and forth to Syria.

In that, terrorism is a lot like ordinary crime. Almost all of the murderers in New York City have prior criminal records, and New York is not unusual in this regard. A great deal of violent crime is committed by people who already have criminal histories.

Law-enforcement bureaucracies are like any other bureaucracy.

. . .

The Sayfullo Saipov case is another instance of serial institutional failure, from immigration authorities to domestic counterterrorism forces. We’ve given them tremendous amounts of money, manpower, and investigatory authority. Now we need to see results.

Why Bureaucracies Don’t Stop Terror

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Bipartisanship at Work and Obamanomics

Crony capitalism is a bipartisan corruption, and another reason why we need a Revolving Door Tax (RDT).

In praising Congress’s huge new tax increase, President Obama said Tuesday that “millionaires and billionaires” will finally “pay their fair share.” That is, unless you are a Nascar track owner, a wind-energy company or the owners of StarKist Tuna, among many others who managed to get their taxes reduced in Congress’s New Year celebration.

There’s plenty to lament about the capital and income tax hikes, but the bill’s seedier underside is the $40 billion or so in tax payoffs to every crony capitalist and special pleader with a lobbyist worth his million-dollar salary. Congress and the White House want everyone to ignore this corporate-welfare blowout, so allow us to shine a light on the merriment.
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The great joke here is that Washington pretends to want to pass “comprehensive tax reform,” even as each year it adds more tax giveaways that distort the tax code and keep tax rates higher than they have to be. Even as he praised the bill full of this stuff, Mr. Obama called Tuesday night for “further reforms to our tax code so that the wealthiest corporations and individuals can’t take advantage of loopholes and deductions that aren’t available to most Americans.”

One of Mr. Obama’s political gifts is that he can sound so plausible describing the opposite of his real intentions.

The costs of all this are far greater than the estimates conjured by the Joint Tax Committee. They include slower economic growth from misallocated capital, lower revenues for the Treasury and thus more pressure to raise rates on everyone, and greater public cynicism that government mainly serves the powerful.

Crony Capitalist Blowout: A tax increase for everyone but the favored wealthy few.


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The elephant in the room is the unconstitutional massive growth of the federal government. The power of the special interests grows as the federal government expands. The only way to eliminate their power is to drastically reduce the size of the federal state. Lobbyists never have a bad year. Three of the five richest counties in America border Washington, DC. There is a reason for this: It’s because our political classes have systematically arrogated themselves power and control beyond the worst nightmares of our founders.

Jack Abramoff on America’s bipartisan culture of corruption


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“The rich makers are redistributed to the rich takers. That’s basically what Obamanomics is all about.”
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The problem today is not Congress and the administration taking money from you and giving it to shiftless lazy people who don’t work. The problem is Washington taking money from people who are creating value and redistributing it to companies that have the best lobbyist and the coziest connections to government.

Rich makers, corporate takers and Obamanomics

Ozymandias

Mockery, truculence, and minimalist living are best, then enjoy the decline. We also need a Revolving Door Tax (RDT).

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