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100 years ago, the US had very few taxes.

Old 05-17-08, 04:07 PM
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100 years ago, the US had very few taxes.

Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL License Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Perm it Tax
Gasoline Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)
IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Tax
Marriage License Tax,
Medicare Tax
Privledge License Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service charge taxes
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax (Truckers)
Sales Taxes
Recreational Vehicle Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Tax
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Non-recurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Tax
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax


Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What happened?

Ok, this is just one of those forwarded things that I keep getting in my email, but most of it checks out as true.

Anyone have a quick rebuttal? Or a quick explanation as to what the hell happened to this country?
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Old 05-17-08, 04:13 PM
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Yeah, we had a war over some damn tea tax and now look at us.
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Old 05-17-08, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Ranger
Yeah, we had a war over some damn tea tax and now look at us.
That was 200 years ago.
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Old 05-17-08, 04:27 PM
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If you look at how much politicians were paid 100 years ago, and then compare their salaries today, you might find answer to all these taxes.

In addition, there was more transparency when money was spent back then because we didn't have such a massive economic structure, where today, it's so confusing, this fact is used to funnel money to ridiculous projects and very little backlash because even news reporters don't have the time to report on all the stories.

But lucky for you, there isn't a Forum Sig Tax.

Yet.

Last edited by DVD Polizei; 05-17-08 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 05-17-08, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Trevor
What happened?
Or a quick explanation as to what the hell happened to this country?
People decided they wanted the government to "do more" for them, be it at the advice of politicians, well meaning advocates, and/or special interests. If you would make a similar list of all the services that forms of government did not provide back then, you will have your answer in more detail.
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Old 05-17-08, 04:54 PM
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What happened?

WWI
The Great Depression
WWII
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Old 05-17-08, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by slappypete
What happened?

WWI
The Great Depression
WWII
You forgot:

The New Deal
The Korean War
The Vietnam War
The Iran-Iraq conflict
The first Gulf War
The Serb/Albanian/Palestinian/Muslim conflict
The second Gulf War
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Old 05-17-08, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Houstondon
People decided they wanted the government to "do more" for them, be it at the advice of politicians, well meaning advocates, and/or special interests. If you would make a similar list of all the services that forms of government did not provide back then, you will have your answer in more detail.
We'd be much better off without the taxes and the "services."
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Old 05-17-08, 05:43 PM
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Hey, I got an uncle lives in Taxes.
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Old 05-17-08, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Superboy
You forgot:

The New Deal
The Korean War
The Vietnam War
The Iran-Iraq conflict
The first Gulf War
The Serb/Albanian/Palestinian/Muslim conflict
The second Gulf War
You forgot the Iran War.
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Old 05-17-08, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Superboy
You forgot:

The New Deal
The Korean War
The Vietnam War
The Iran-Iraq conflict
The first Gulf War
The Serb/Albanian/Palestinian/Muslim conflict
The second Gulf War
I didn't forget about them, they just didn't have as much of an impact on taxes. The two World Wars are responsible for the huge increase in permanent military spending. I almost included Vietnam since the horrors created by that draft led to the need of a larger standing military, but even that didn't have as large an impact as the 3 I listed.

Prior to WWI we didn't need a military ready to respond to threats on other continents.

Prior to the Great Depression we didn't need any social safety nets.

Prior to WWII we didn't need to build permanent military installations all over the world.

Everything since then has been minor changes on the same themes. Some believe we don't need these things now, but those 3 events are why the Federal government has grown so large.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by slappypete
I didn't forget about them, they just didn't have as much of an impact on taxes. The two World Wars are responsible for the huge increase in permanent military spending. I almost included Vietnam since the horrors created by that draft led to the need of a larger standing military, but even that didn't have as large an impact as the 3 I listed.

Prior to WWI we didn't need a military ready to respond to threats on other continents.

Prior to the Great Depression we didn't need any social safety nets.

Prior to WWII we didn't need to build permanent military installations all over the world.

Everything since then has been minor changes on the same themes. Some believe we don't need these things now, but those 3 events are why the Federal government has grown so large.
I don't always agree with the sentiments of separatists or "looking out for #1" types but it is considered reasonably certain that our decision to play world police made much of the global economy more competitive (more so than the additional markets it opened up to our goods were worth). By providing Japan & Europe with massive amounts of military spending, we kept them from having to spend as much on protecting their interests (military) and rebuilding their infrastructure with all new manufacturing plants with handouts while our own had to invest profits in a competitive environment has had lasting effects. There were some good reasons to do so but these decisions have come back to haunt us time and again too.

What people "need" and what they "want" are rarely the same thing. Taxes are ultimately just a means of redistributing wealth by force (or threat of force) for a great many things that people refuse to buy directly. How many people out there think we should be involved in most wars? How many think we should take ~40%+ of everything a worker earns to fund many things he doesn't want, can't use, or is otherwise opposed to?
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Old 05-18-08, 09:36 AM
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A hundred years ago, the sort of things that got Enron executives sent to jail were ordinary business practices.

A hundred years ago, people could sell people a vial of motor oil and call it medicine. People could make paris green (arsenic) colored candy or sell grade D meat. Five-story buildings were built with no fire escapes. A factory owner would rather have an employee lose an arm than damage a box of shingles, because the shingles cost the owner a dollar fifty and the arm nothing. Banks were uninsured, and everyone in town could lose their savings in an hour. A lot of technologies barely existed, like broadcast radio and paved roads.

Citizens decided that they wanted these conditions changed. It costs money to enforce all those laws.

Also, we weren't in a permanent state of war. There wasn't a military base and a military contractor in every congressional district.

Finally, Americans in some parts of the country died of malnutrition. Citizens felt that this country should do better than a third-world nation. They created a financial cushion for everyone. Over the years, that cushion has become a bedroom set.
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Old 05-18-08, 09:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Trevor
Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL License Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Perm it Tax
Gasoline Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)
IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Tax
Marriage License Tax,
Medicare Tax
Privledge License Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service charge taxes
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax (Truckers)
Sales Taxes
Recreational Vehicle Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Tax
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Non-recurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Tax
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax


Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What happened?

Ok, this is just one of those forwarded things that I keep getting in my email, but most of it checks out as true.

Anyone have a quick rebuttal? Or a quick explanation as to what the hell happened to this country?
most of these are use fees to pay for government services and they are state and local taxes which have been around a lot longer than the federal tax
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Old 05-18-08, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Nick Danger
Citizens decided that they wanted these conditions changed. It costs money to enforce all those laws.
Citizens felt that this country should do better than a third-world nation. They created a financial cushion for everyone. Over the years, that cushion has become a bedroom set.
Agreed, I just think too many people have become dependent on some services that the government really has no business providing (and does so far less efficiently than the private sector). The incremental increases in services have been getting expensive a lot quicker in the last few decades, pushing a lot of people over the edge in the "lower taxes=nirvana" age.
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Old 05-18-08, 05:19 PM
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Couple of things to look at. Though there weren't many taxes, in 1989, the top mariginal income tax rate was 77%, which is quite high. In 1945 it was over 90%. Even in 1980, it was 70%.

Granted there were many loopholes, but I would say that just having one tax does not necessarily make things better.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
Couple of things to look at. Though there weren't many taxes, in 1989, the top mariginal income tax rate was 77%, which is quite high. In 1945 it was over 90%. Even in 1980, it was 70%.

Granted there were many loopholes, but I would say that just having one tax does not necessarily make things better.
The top marginal tax rate hasn't been 77% since 1964. In 1989, the top marginal rate was 28 or 33 percent, depending on how you count it.

In the 19th century, we got a significant portion of our tax revenues from tariffs. Those tariffs are mostly gone now. So if you're going to complain about the current tax regime, keep in mind that there was a different tax regime that it was replacing.
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Old 05-18-08, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Trevor
Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
Debatable.
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Old 05-18-08, 08:13 PM
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100 years ago, we didn't have the military industrial complex.
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Old 05-18-08, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Nick Danger
They created a financial cushion for everyone. Over the years, that cushion has become a bedroom set.
Around here, that cushion has become a big screen TV and brand new rims.
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Old 05-18-08, 08:34 PM
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I keep hearing that Americans are better off than ever before in our history. Look at all the crap we can buy. Maybe those evil taxes didn't hurt as badly as some would have us believe.
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Old 05-18-08, 09:26 PM
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We can buy a lot of crap because of taxes? I think many programs have helped raised the standard of living but some are disturbingly wasteful.
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Old 05-18-08, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Rockmjd23
We can buy a lot of crap because of taxes?
No...

Complaint: "Look at all the taxes...oh the humanity!"

Me: "They're not really hurting as badly as some would like to make it."
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Old 05-18-08, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Trevor
Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, and our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
Originally Posted by The Bus
Debatable.
Really? How is that debatable?
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Old 05-18-08, 11:40 PM
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Originally Posted by VinVega
No...

Complaint: "Look at all the taxes...oh the humanity!"

Me: "They're not really hurting as badly as some would like to make it."
I don't think they have to hurt the country directly to be a bad thing. Imo many taxes are used to line the pockets of bureaucrats which I consider immoral.
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