Playing with fire

The Tax Foundation: Tax burden of top 1% now exceeds that of the bottom 95%[*1] :

IRS data shows that in 2007—the most recent data available—the top 1 percent of taxpayers paid 40.4 percent of the total income taxes collected by the federal government. This is the highest percentage in modern history. By contrast, the top 1 percent paid 24.8 percent of the income tax burden in 1987, the year following the 1986 tax reform act.

. . . the bottom 95 percent paid 39.4 percent of the income tax burden. This is down from the 58 percent of the total income tax burden they paid twenty years ago.

To put this in perspective, the top 1 percent is comprised of just 1.4 million taxpayers and they pay a larger share of the income tax burden now than the bottom 134 million taxpayers combined.

Some in Washington say the tax system is still not progressive enough. However, the recent IRS data bolsters the findings of an OECD study released last year showing that the U.S.—not France or Sweden—has the most progressive income tax system among OECD nations. We rely more heavily on the top 10 percent of taxpayers than does any nation and our poor people have the lowest tax burden of those in any nation.

This is all well and good until the 1% decide to stop paying taxes. And they are quite capable of doing so, and doing quite nicely while doing it, thank you very much.

If you don’t have any “skin in the game,” you’re not likely to take the game very seriously. That’s just human nature. That’s why people vote Democrat–they don’t take the “game” of fiscal responsibility seriously. The first five months of the Obama Administration and a Democrat stranglehold on the Congress make that perfectly clear to everyone.

Passing thousand-page bills spending hundreds of billions of dollars without even bothering to read them is proof enough that Democrats simply don’t take government seriously, and they don’t take taxpayers seriously.

Taxpayers, on the other hand, are taking all of this increasingly seriously, and if the Democrats aren’t careful, this could get really ugly really fast.

Time for the Democrats to curl up with a good book. Atlas Shrugged[*2] . (You can skip over the John Galt speech. though–everybody does.)

Organic food? Save your money

Scientific literature survey finds no significant health benefit to organically grown food.

A systematic review of 162 scientific papers published in the scientific literature over the last 50 years, however, found there was no significant difference.

“A small number of differences in nutrient content were found to exist between organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs, but these are unlikely to be of any public health relevance,” said Alan Dangour, one of the report’s authors.

“Our review indicates that there is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority.”

Add organic food to the long, long list of things whose main purpose is to separate money from gullible people.

Of course, there will always be those who like to watch a little beetle crawl out of their half-eaten “organic” salad at an upper-crust restaurant, as happened to your humble correspondent a couple of years ago. I understand that the head chef, an organically-minded “elite” chef, is no longer at that restaurant, but even so, Snookums and I are in no special hurry to go back to that restaurant.

Hey, Spam-bots! SGT James Clayton wants YOU!

A particularly loathesome spam I just received:

From – Thu Jul 30 08:32:51 2009
X-Mozilla-Status: 0001
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Return-Path: []
Delivered-To: (redacted)
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by (redacted) with SMTP; 30 Jul 2009 13:32:50 -0000
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by (redacted) (Postfix) with SMTP id 1098961E75
for (redacted); Thu, 30 Jul 2009 09:32:50 -0400 (EDT)
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by (redacted) (Postfix) with ESMTP id 783EB61E72
for (redacted); Thu, 30 Jul 2009 09:32:49 -0400 (EDT)
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by with bizsmtp
id N9SX1c01T2kvMAa3PDSnoj; Thu, 30 Jul 2009 15:26:47 +0200
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by IMPmailhost6.adm.correo with BIZ IMP
id NDSj1c009160deM1mDSkL0; Thu, 30 Jul 2009 15:26:47 +0200
X-TE-authinfo: authemail=””
X-TE-AcuTerraCos: auth_cuTerraCos=”cosuitera01″
Reply-To: []
From: “Sgt .James Clayton” []
Subject: Your Assistance is Needed
Date: Thu, 30 Jul 2009 15:26:46 +0200
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain;
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
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X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2600.0000
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To: undisclosed-recipients:;

I am Sgt .James Clayton jr. an Engineering military unit here in Baghdad in Iraq,My late 2 colleagues who died last week in a bomb blast and I found a huge sum of amount USD in Baghdad neighbourhood ( Back to me via email
Regards SGT James Clayton

I Googled SGT James Clayton, and discovered, much to my chagrin, that I didn’t get his complete message. Go ahead, do it. It’s fun. I did howeveer discover that he’s got a few other e-mail addresses, too. SGT James Clayton is a busy, busy boy: (added extra t)

Funny! Shatner does Palin

Shatner can make anything sound . . . Shatneresque.


British neofascism on parade

I’m not exactly a huge fan of American radio talk show host Michael Savage, but I’m even less a fan of trumped up British neofascists banning him from Britain for no better reason than to provide ideological balance to the ban list. Yes, Affirmative Action Banning, brought to you by the Liberal Party of the United Kingdom!

The Daily Mail[*1] :

Emails written by Home Office officials privately acknowledged the ban on Mr Savage would provide ‘balance’ to a list dominated by Muslims – and linked the decision to Gordon Brown and Foreign Secretary David Miliband.

The officials admitted their action could look ‘duplicitous’ and cited his ‘homophobia’ as a reason the move would receive public support.

The Right-wing radio presenter, whose hardline views on Islam, rape and autism have caused outrage in the US but whose show, The Savage Nation, has eight million listeners, was identified in May by (former UK Home Secretary) Ms Smith as one of 16 people barred due to their political views.

Neofascists think in terms of “fairness” and “balance.” They really are cynical manipulators of anyone they can. They seek to pit one group of people against another. It’s the oldest trick in the book–divide and conquer.

The race-baters of all colors in the US do the same thing, for the same reasons. It’s not about race, it’s about power. Their power, stolen fair and square from you.