Cameron meets Smith, Keynes, and Laffer

It never ceases to amaze me just how many Politicians think that they are Economists. And fail spectacularly in the process. Yes, we all use money. But using a car does not make us automotive Engineers…

The story is this:

England has been descending (Again…) into class warfare and punitive Progressive Tax The Rich policies. Wanting more money, David Cameron and his party coveted. Never mind that being covetous is a sin. Never mind what generations of economics (and equal generations of Political-trial-and-error-and-Error-and-ERROR!) have shown. Never mind that hundreds (thousands?) have trod that path before, with the same failed outcome. No… ‘Economic Justice’ DEMANDED more taxation!!!

Thus were taxes raised. More folks were moved into a 40% rate and the top rate rose to 50%. (per the paper below, some marginal rates rose to 60% as ‘allowances’ were progressively removed).

Now the results are in: Raise Tax Rates, Get LESS Tax Revenue. Per this Fox Business video, a 5% drop in revenues:

http://www.foxbusiness.com/on-air/willis-report/index.html#/v/1472074556001/tax-hikes-bad-for-government-revenue/?playlist_id=157870

One suspects that Mr. Cameron may now be listening to the professional economists who are trying to explain to him what is presently called The Laffer Curve. One can only hope that he listens, and that he whispers in the ear of Obama and the Dimocrats. (The Republicrims are undoubtedly already being upbraided by their more traditional party members…)

The basic idea is not all that hard to grasp (at least, not for those folks who bother to think, even just a little…) You get less of something if you tax it. The more you tax it, the greater the decline in the thing taxed. If that tax is applied to, say, productivity, you get less productivity. If it is applied to incomes, you get less income. Initially, the increase in tax rate (say, from 0% to 5%) has a lower reduction in the thing taxed (say from 100% to 99%) so you end up with about 4.8% of actual tax revenues. Nearer to the middle, you get close to a 1:1 ratio, so raise tax rates from 45% to 50% and income activities decrease from, say 55% to 50%. No net gain in total taxes (but a reduction in total wealth and income creation). At the extreme case, going from 90% to 100% taxation will take income production to zero (who would ever work for the ‘privilege’ of filling out tax forms and no gain?)

The goal of the taxing authority is to find that level of tax rate that yields the most total tax revenue. In England, at least, we now know that level is somewhat less than 50% and perhaps lower than 40% tax rate. (As the system is ‘progressive’ with several rates, the exact inflection point is hidden by the spectrum of applied rates).

For the USA we know that no matter what tax rate is set, the maximum Federal Revenue is about 18%. (We know this from all the screwing around that the Congress has done to the Federal Income Tax rates. As high as 90% in some eras – with a significant depression of economic activity – and much lower in other times. Reagan cut tax rates to below 40% and revenue rose dramatically as economic activity improved.)

As our present Federal Tax Rates are already 35% or so depending on how rich you are (and how much money you toss at tax attorneys…)

http://www.moneychimp.com/features/tax_brackets.htm

is projecting a 39.6% upper rate in 2013. I would speculate that tax revenues will be dropping at that point. ( Remember that there are also STATE income taxes in most States, along with sales taxes on what is spent. For California that is an 11% top income tax and 9-10% Sales Tax – it varies with local added bits. Total of income taxes would be 50.6% THEN you get to pay 10% for anything you buy… And California wonders why tax receipts are down…)

Perhaps we can get Mr. Cameron and Governor Jerry Brown to share a Basic Econ class…

Dear Progressive (taxation) Politicians: Just because you don’t LIKE it, that does not let you CHANGE it.

The laws of economics are as immutable as the laws of nature.
“Reality just is. -E.M.Smith”.
Please learn that. I’m really tired of seeing you all, one at a time, try the same error, over and over, and yet never learning.

Special Attention needs to be paid to the point that ‘removing allowances’ is exactly the same effect as raising the actual rates. No amount of hiding, wiggling, lying about what it is, or redefining things changes the results. Folks notice that working more gets them less, so they stop. Folks find other ways that are not taxed to make the marginal money. They move investments to other places. Sometimes they move themselves.

In the USA today, our politicians are haggling over the tax code (Again!) and part of the “gimmick” they are proposing is the old dodge of dropping rates a little while eliminating MORE in ‘allowances’ or ‘deductions’. They think this will generate more revenue. It won’t.

REVENUE has a max amount and that is very nearly 18% of the GDP. All the “gimmicks” do is to move exactly from whom and how it is collected. Obama has stated he wants ‘only’ 25% of GDP as the Federal Goal. He simply can not get it PERIOD FULL STOP.

The way to get more REVENUE is to grow GDP, then you get 18% of a larger total. That’s why Reagan and Kennedy both cut tax rates and got more total revenue… Economics does not care what party you belong to, nor what your “motive” is. It doesn’t care if you are an “Evil Republican” or a “Nice Democrat”. It works the same for all comers and regardless of motivation. So no, you will NOT be able to raise more REVENUE by playing with rates, allowances, deductions, whatever. 18% of GDP is IT. After that, it’s all about “more GDP”. And how do you get more GDP? You tax the creation of it LESS, not more…

OK, the links:

Here’s the original Adam Smith Institute report. I’ve only read about half of it so far, but it is well worth it just for the historical quotes, if nothing else:

http://www.adamsmith.org/sites/default/files/resources/tax-paper-final(1).pdf

They do an interesting thing, in that they trace back statements about taxation and tax rates through various Known Names of history. While not as ‘direct’ as the Laffer Curve, that presents it as a graphical device, it still shows that this effect has been known from the roots of Economic Theory. I’m going to lift some of their quotes and put them here:

“It should be known that at the beginning of the dynasty, taxation yields a large revenue from small assessments. At the end of the dynasty, taxation yields a small revenue from large assessments.” Ibn Khaldun, The Muqaddimah, 1377.

Louis XIV’s finance minister, Jean Baptiste Colbert, famously said that “the art of taxation consists in so plucking the goose as to obtain the largest possible amount of feathers with the smallest possible amount of hissing.” Colbert’s approach led to the French Revolution. In Britain today many are tired of losing their feathers and are taking avoiding action, moving overseas or beyond the reach of the taxman in other ways.

As Adam Smith said, taxes “obstruct the industry of the people, and discourage them from applying to certain branches of business which might give maintenance and employment to great multitudes.”

“Experience does not show that the higher [tax] rate produces the larger revenue. Experience is all the other way. There is no escaping that when the taxation of large incomes is excessive they tend to disappear.”
Calvin Coolidge

“It is a paradoxical truth that tax rates are too high today and tax revenues are too low and the soundest way to raise the revenues in the long run is to cut the tax rates… An economy constrained by high tax rates will never produce enough revenue to balance the budget, just as it will never create enough jobs or enough profits.” John F. Kennedy

“Nor should the argument seem strange that taxation may be so high as to defeat its object, and that, given sufficient time to gather the fruits, a reduction of taxation will run a better chance than an increase of balancing the budget. For to take the opposite view today is to resemble a manufacturer who, running at a loss, decides to raise his price, and when his declining sales increase the loss, wrapping himself in the rectitude of plain arithmetic, decides that prudence requires him to raise the price still more-­‐-­‐and who, when at last his account is balanced with nought on both sides, is still foundm righteously declaring that it would have been the act of a gambler to reduce the price when you were already making a loss.” 1933 Essay: The Means to Prosperity, section I: The nature of the problem, p338, The Collected Writings of John Maynard Keynes, Macmillan Cambridge University Press, 1972

President Ronald Reagan used to describe the days when he worked as an actor in the times of 90% marginal tax rates. After a certain point in the year he and fellow actors just stopped making films. What was the point, he asked?

By contrast, the ten states with the highest tax burden – California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Vermont, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania – lost around 129,455 residents and $10.2 billion of net-­‐adjusted income in 2008 alone. From 1998 through 2008, the ten states with the highest tax burden lost over 3 million residents. These residents took with them a huge $92 billion in income.

This is part of a much larger quote down near the bottom of the paper. The whole of it is worth reading:

If (the reader) understands this, he will realize that the strongest incentive for activity is to lower as much as possible the amounts of individual imposts levied upon persons capable of undertaking enterprises. In this manner, such persons will be psychologically disposed to undertake them, because they can be confident of making a profit from them. Ibn Khaldun, The Muqaddimah, 1377

Can we PLEASE get off this wheel? Have we learned NOTHING in 3/4 of a MILLENNIUM? (and in fact forgotten something from Ibn Khaldun…)

The paper gives many examples of lowered rates with higher revenues. Many countries. Many eras and years. Many cultures. Many political orientations. Well worth the read. A few examples (including India, Singapore, Hong Kong) seem to indicate that the peak of revenues from the Laffer Curve may, in fact, be at lower than an 18% tax rate. Due to the increase in total compliance along with economic activity, there are existence proofs for 15% to 10% tax rates.

The Forbes take on that paper:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/beltway/2011/04/04/a-victory-for-the-laffer-curve-a-defeat-for-englands-economy/

4/04/2011
A Victory For The Laffer Curve, A Defeat For England’s Economy

Daniel J. Mitchell,

A new study from the Adam Smith Institute in the United Kingdom provides overwhelming evidence that class-warfare tax policy is grossly misguided and self-destructive. The authors examine the likely impact of the 10-percentage point increase in the top income tax rate, which was imposed as an election-year stunt by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown and then kept in place by his feckless successor, David Cameron.

They find that boosting the top tax rate to 50 percent will slow economic performance. And because of both macroeconomic and microeconomic responses, tax revenues over the next 10 years are likely to drop by the equivalent of more than $550 billion. Here’s a key paragraph from the executive summary of the new study.

The country is suffering from a 50%-plus marginal tax rate which even its architect admits was imposed without economic purpose. Now our analysis shows that the policy is set for failure: at best leading to flat growth for a decade and £350bn of lost revenue. The Chancellor should seize the occasion of the 2011 budget to reverse this disaster promptly, for the benefit of public revenues, economic growth, the government’s standing with domestic wealth-creators, and the UK’s reputation with world business.

And a note from 2009 about the motivation for this tax, that sounds remarkably like the stupid rhetoric of the Progressive (tax) parties in America today:

http://www.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/5245013/why-cameron-should-ditch-the-50p-tax-rate.thtml

Wednesday, 5th August 2009
Why Cameron should ditch the 50p tax rate
Fraser Nelson

When justifying his decision to keep Gordon Brown’s 50p tax for the super rich, Cameron has recently taken to saying that the well-off must “pay their fair share”. This is worth closer examination. The richest 1% in Britain contribute 24 percent of all income tax collected – it is unclear whether Cameron regards this as “fair” or not. But if he wants it to rise, then it is clear what he should do. Data released last week from America, and picked up by the smarter economics bloggers, gives us a striking example. If he wants to soak the rich, cut their taxes.

Closing Rant

So there we have it. Proof once again that some humans are incapable of learning from history and must repeat it. Oddly, those on the Progressive (tax) side seem incapable of learning from either their history nor from their more recent repeats of it. One can only speculate on “why”.

Perhaps they are simply driven by greed, envy, being covetous. Perhaps they are simply too stupid to learn.

Perhaps they know they will not get more revenue, but the sheer Joy of Harming those they despise is what they desire. Like windowbreakers the world over, they are not interested in a positive outcome.

That it has been nearly 700 years (that we have in the easy to find quotes!) that this effect of greater revenues from lower rates has been known; yet we still do not have leaders that recognize it today, is at best depressing. That as recently as the 1980s the Republicans knew it, and that in 1963 the Democrats new it; yet today NEITHER PARTY seems aware of it, or willing to act on the awareness; is worse than depressing.

We have a $1.5 Trillion Deficit per year, $15 Trillion debt NOW, high and structural unemployment, declining Federal Revenues and the answer proposed is Precisely and Exactly WRONG! Do NOT raise tax rates. Do NOT reduce deductions and allowances. Just cut the damn rates to about 18% (which is all you can get anyway) and watch the economy take off, rising employment, rapid growth of economic activity, a flood of money into the economy from abroad, and a giant rise of tax revenues. For bonus points, toss out a half century of accumulated crap in the tax code and make it a flat tax, deduction for home mortgage interest and charitable donations if you must for political reasons. Scrap the rest.

At times I wonder about the sanity of humanity; the rest of the time I’m sure…

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
This entry was posted in Economics - Trading - and Money, Political Current Events and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to Cameron meets Smith, Keynes, and Laffer

  1. adrianvance says:

    Sorry, but these people know exactly what they are doing. They do not want more revenues; they want more power and can get it only by crushing the economy and then buying assets for pennies on the Dollar with money they have stolen from us. To see what they know, and why, please go to this link:
    http://adrianvance.blogspot.com/2012/01/laffer-curve.html

  2. E.M.Smith says:

    @AdrianVance:

    Like the biblical reference. Didn’t know about ‘The Kings Fifth’ either.

    Looks like it’s been known for even longer than 700 years ;-)

    One of my failings is an inability to “think stupid”, so it never even occurred to me to think that folks might WANT to damage the economy and would rather have a bigger percentage even if smaller in total. Yet I can’t find a reason to demonstrate why it could not be that way…

  3. John Silver says:

    Then there is the story about Hong Kong….

  4. John Silver says:

    It was this video I was looking for:

    There are 5 parts:

  5. H.R. says:

    Soaking “the Rich” is all about class warfare as a means of retaining power. I’m just as concerned about the 50% with NO skin in the game.

  6. adrianvance says:

    Genesis 47:24 came from antiquity. There are writings in China and India that suggest the concept predated the earliest of their writings.

    In 1987 I did a study of our economic history from 1776 to that date by extracting and computing to a common base the economics of our country. It became very clear that we did our best when the overall tax rates were about 20%, but subjecting everything to rigorous math analysis produced a figure of 18.3% as the optimum. During such times our economy thrived and we expanded 20% to 30% in a single year. Those years included inventions like the cotton gin, which made slavery uneconomic, and the steel plow of John Deere that opened the prairie to corn farming.

    At some level our elected ruling class knows this very well, but they also realize that such an economy they are only 20% where now with national totals at 42% when all state and federal imposts are summed, they are two fiflth of the economy. They prefer that as these are people who are mad for power. They would be perfectly happy to have us hungry and fall to our knees when they arrive in all their splendor to tell us whom to hate. It is just that simple.

    America and Europe have become engines of doom. This can only be resolved in violence and hopefully the truth will become known. Now you can explain this to the masses and they will refuse to believe it just as they refuse to understand that a “trace gas” that is a poor absorber of IR energy from sunlight can control the atmosphere when simple physics tells us it is only responsible for 0.2% of atmospheric heating, but the elected ruling class knows carbon combustion makes 80% of all our energy and control of that would give them the greatest power they could ever have. We are in an insane asylum and the lunatics are in charge.

  7. adolfogiurfa says:

    “THEY” have fixed the Laffer´s curve (for me it´s a general law: The law of sine) to reach a maximum at 70% TAX RATE.
    In order to do that, I will tell you what you will have in the near future: THEY will tell you that “tax pressure” is too low (taking into consideration only taxes paid directly to your IRS, and nothing of local, etc. taxes), then, in order to fix this problem you will be blessed by a “flat tax”: a VAT (value added tax), as many countries already have it, at 18-20%, then a “selective tax to consumption” ( a fuels´tax) of about 50-60% (price of fuel multiplied by 1.5-1.6).
    And….all those not “taxes” but “penalties” applied to “fast/trash food”, etc.,etc.
    Of course THEY won´t pay them, because being “public servants” their “taxes” are paid by the public…
    Believe me!

  8. GregO says:

    American rich pay plenty in taxes:
    http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/27134.html

    Full disclosure: I am not rich; but a hopelessly broke small-businessman.

  9. adolfogiurfa says:

    @GreO: So you are lucky: You know you are. Just look around: They don´t know they are BROKE!

  10. When it was pointed out to Obama, in a campaign debate with Clinton et al. early on, that raising the capital gains tax rates would reduce actual tax revenues and harm the middle class, he persisted in the interest of “fairness”:
    http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/capital-commerce/2008/04/17/obama-clinton-debate-in-philadelphia-spawns-weird-economics

    Ideology trumps all.

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  11. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh God…. so they KNOW what it does and that IS the goal…

    We’re in worse shape than I thought…

  12. George says:

    There was a recent story about Apple’s offshore billions that gives a perfect illustration of this point. Apple had $82 billion in cash as of January. $54 billion of it was sitting overseas. They can’t bring that capital into the US because it would be charged a 35% corporate tax. Apple says they would gladly repatriate a significant portion of that capital at a 5% to 9% tax rate.

    What that means is that instead of getting potentially 9% of $54 billion ($4.86 billion dollars) the federal government is getting 35% of nothing ($0 billion dollars).

    Apple probably isn’t the only company with a lot of money sitting overseas, either. Such a reduction in tax rates for capital repatriation would bring a windfall of tax revenue to the government AND get a lot of money back in this country working again.

    The steps this government takes to undermine economic activity appears in sum to be designed for the PURPOSE of doing maximum possible damage to our economy. In other words, the administration appears to be worse than incompetent, they appear to be malevolent.

  13. adrianvance says:

    Mr. Obama is clearly out to crush the American people down to a mass that will bow to him as he bows to Muslim kings. He is seeking revenge for having been abandoned by a white mother. That she left him with far more loving and capable people who gave him every advantage knowing that she could not has never occurred to him. We have an angry man for a President.

  14. tckev says:

    E.M.
    Europe’s history means that many governments have grown from the royal ‘right’ to impose punitive taxes. England’s Mr. Cameron government is just reverting to that old form without taking note of his nations history.

    You give a fine explanation of the hows and whys of setting the level of taxation. I am still stuck with the what, why, and who gets the benefit from this taxation. These days the philosophy of class and material envy mixed with Marxism appears to be running things.

    With Taxation as with all things – Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

  15. George says:

    “Oh God…. so they KNOW what it does and that IS the goal… ”

    Obama is playing a very old socialist trick. What you do first of all is get >50% of the voters into a position where they are not paying any income tax and at the same time greatly increase entitlement spending to send them a lot of “free” money and benefits. At that point, they will always vote for a tax increase because it’s no skin off their nose. Then you demagogue “the rich” and blame them for all the economic ills that massive entitlement spending has produced. You then have the political capital to massively increase taxes on those who remain productive until you tax them into being poor, too. The goal is to create a massive class of poor who are dependent on government for their daily bread. Then they can do whatever they want. They then remain in power by pointing to their opposition and saying “these people want to take away your money and give it to the rich”.

    It worked pretty well for Chavez, no?

  16. adolfogiurfa says:

    When will you understand their real altruistic purpose: The only way to fight against obesity is POVERTY :-)

  17. adolfogiurfa says:

    @George: Chavez? cancer?

  18. cm says:

    Cameron was one of the bright young things that introduced the Poll Tax under Maggie Thatcher.
    The Tax System is broken in Britain and i don’t think it’ll ever be fixed.Too many vested interests in the status quo.
    This site has some good info on how much and where some of the money goes to http://www.taxpayersalliance.com/

  19. George says:

    Another example is the “bag ban” in the city of San Jose. No more plastic bags at the supermarket. If you want a bag, you will have to pay 10 cents for a paper bag (10 cents EACH). So … I now shop in Cupertino and Saratoga. Not only is San Jose losing any shot of a 10 cent bag tax, they get none of my sales tax. That now goes to two neighboring jurisdictions.

  20. John F. Hultquist says:

    Both the UK and places in the US have tried a “window tax.” Not only did they get fewer windows in new buildings but folks bricked-up windows in existing buildings.
    Wikipedia (“bless their hearts”) has a short report and a few photos:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Window_tax

    I saw this also during a long ago field trip (Kansas City, I think) but haven’t found a web reference.

  21. Have you ever thought that those who advocate “Soaking the Rich” want to drag us down to the point that we look as dark as North Korea at night?

    After all, prosperity means more energy consumption and more fossil fuels being burned. More burning leads to higher CO2 concentrations and then we are all going to die from Catastrophic Anthropomorphic Climate Change.

    Thank God for Al Gore and Prince Charles who show us how life should be lived with their multiple mansions (including Grosvenor House with its 54,000 heated square feet), Gulfstream IVs and royal yachts.

  22. Oooops!
    I forgot to mention the Obama’s who are even more splendid than Al & Charles when it comes to conspicuous consumption.

  23. cm (01:17:58) :
    As a relocated Brit I can tell you that the US federal income tax code is Byzantine in its complexity. The British system is a breeze by comparison.

    However it does not help the Brits to have a relatively simple tax code when their marginal rates are on the wrong side of the Laffer curve.

    To add insult to injury, most European nations have high tax rates on PRODUCTION in contrast to the low tax rates on CONSUMPTION in the USA.

    European governments love the awful VAT (Value Added Tax) that loads commerce with soul destroying red tape and intrusive “Enforcement”. The current standard VAT rate in the UK is 20%.

    I live in Florida that has a state sales tax of 6% so the tax rate is more than three times lower than the UK’s VAT and the tax is more efficient (much less effort is required to collect it).

  24. tckev says:

    E.M.
    It is known how to collect the maximum amount of tax efficiently, how about a look at how it will be spent.

    President Obama’s going to put your tax dollars (and borrowing) to work. A quick look at fiscal year 2013 budget proposal shows how the White House intends to initiate a “green stimulus”, not just the Department of Energy (DOE) but other federal agencies as well.

    Not a comprehensive account of non-DOE energy spending but a quick review of the President’s budget proposal reveals the following examples:

    Department of Agriculture
    $6.1 billion for loans to rural electric companies that switch to clean energy generation
    $200 million toward domestic biofuel production
    $19 million to the Rural Energy for America Program for farmers and rural businesses using renewable energy

    Department of Commerce
    $5 billion to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for weather and climate programs environmental research

    Department of Defense
    $1 billion to improve energy efficiency in older buildings and use renewable energy in new projects
    $32 million for the Installation Energy Test Bed Program for new energy technologies

    Department of Housing and Urban Development
    $100 million for the Sustainable Communities Initiative, which includes community incentives to lower energy costs and air pollution from greenhouse gas emissions
    $3 million for modeling technology to reach energy efficiency and green building goals

    Department of the Interior
    $86 million for renewable energy products on federal property, especially solar, wind, and geothermal electricity generation

    Department of State
    $129 million for the Global Environment Facility to provide grants to developing countries for greenhouse gas emission, ozone health, and other projects, such as biodiversity and conservation
    $13 million for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
    $8 million to the U.N. Environment Program
    $7 million to conservation programs in the funds appropriated to the President

    National Science Foundation
    $355 million for clean energy research, especially solar energy and energy efficiency
    Inclusion in $203 million across agencies for research on renewable and clean energies as well as environmental and climate systems
    _________________________________________________________
    Can’t see any of that going to help with job, housing, national debt, etc.

  25. E.M.Smith says:

    @George:

    I’ve also adopted the habit of doing significant ‘buys’ a mile or so over in the nearest non-San Jose town. I’ll still buy what I can carry in my hands locally, so a quart of milk in San Jose, $400 of groceries in the next town over…

    Wonder when the merchants will notice ;-)

    @John F. Hultquist:

    Saw a picture of somewhere that did that. Rows of houses with bricks in the windows…

    @GallopingCamel:

    Interesting point… If your “natural constituency” is the poor, make more of them…

    Whenever someone here proposes a VAT, I end up needing to explain how it is different from a Sales Tax and more distributed / insidious. We have politicians here who want to do a VAT, but you can’t get them to guarantee the other taxes will be removed at the same time.

    @Tckev:

    That’s depressing…

    Not only “top cover” but the Warmers are going to get a raise, too.

    Wonder who in congress has a “Green” stock portfolio…

  26. Pingback: Now Entering Kleptocracy « Musings from the Chiefio

  27. Mark Miller says:

    I remember hearing on Glenn Beck’s show, back when he was on the Headline News channel, in ’08, that some report produced by congress said in so many words that they were going to have to take steps to slow down American economic growth. They gave other rationales and explanations for their actions (my guess is it had to do with the “environment”), but that’s what it boiled down to. I wish I could find the video of that, because Beck quoted the congressional report and “translated” it in a way that I thought made a lot of sense.

    As I read this post, and looked at the comments, this video based on “Atlas Shrugged,” came to mind. It’s part of a 17-part series produced by Richard Gleaves, using a monologue done by Christopher Hurt, reading the last part of the book called “This is John Galt speaking.” I think it drives the message home a bit too stridently, but it’s still valuable to listen to. I think there are some valuable kernels of truth in it. As I listened to it again, I thought it tied in nicely with your post on The Club of Rome.

    Quoting from it:

    They do not want to own your fortune. They want you to lose it. They do not want to succeed. They want you to fail. They do not want to live. They want you to die. They desire nothing. They hate existence, and they keep running; each trying not to learn that the object of his hatred is himself.

    You who have never grasped the nature of evil; You who describe them as misguided idealists, may the god you’ve invented forgive you. They are the essence of evil. They, those anti-living objects, who seek by devouring the world to fill the selfless zero of their soul. It is not your wealth that they’re after! Theirs is a conspiracy against the mind, which means against life and man. It is a conspiracy without leader or direction. And the random little thugs who cash in on the agony of one land or another are chance scum, riding the torrent from the broken dam of the sewer of centuries, from the reservoir of hatred for reason, for logic, for ability, for achievement, for joy, stored by every whining anti-human who ever preached the superiority of the heart over the mind. It is a conspiracy of all those who seek not to live, but to get away with living; those who choose to seek one small corner of reality, and are drawn by feeling to all the others who are busy cutting other corners; a conspiracy that unites by links of evasion all those who pursue a zero as a value: The professor who, unable to think, takes pleasure in crippling the mind of his students; the mediocrity who takes pleasure in demolishing greatness; the eunuch who takes pleasure in the castration of all pleasure, and all their intellectual munition makers. All those who preach that the immolation of virtue will transform vices into virtue. Death is the premise at the root of their theories. Death is the goal of their actions and practice. And you are the last of their victims.

  28. adolfogiurfa says:

    @Mark Miller: Of course!, it has always been Thanatos vs. Eros.

  29. adolfogiurfa says:

    @Mark: But it is worst the pseudo religion of liberalism, where the leaders appear as the saviors of humanity who will let you free from any responsibility, from the normal and healthy struggle for life, and they tell you the government will do it for you. Such a “blessed paradise” you have it very near: There in Cuba the average monthly income is US10.-(ten dollars!).
    Is that what you want for your country?

  30. adrianvance says:

    Once again, when the free market is taxed optimally at 18.3% that is the power government has over the people. For these criminals it is not enough. The easy way for them to become more powerful is to “bring the free market down to size.” Now they are taking 42%, by my best reckoning, and they want 60% if not more. Communist dictators want 100% and the result is the same every time. It is just that simple.

    The Two Minute Conservative at http://adrianvance.blogspot.com for political analysis, science and humor. Daily on Kindle.

  31. Pascvaks says:

    Has anyone seen the latest EuroRail Pass? It works in the US too. Really!

  32. E.M.Smith says:

    @Pascvaks:

    Nice picture… I feel an Icon For A Movement coming on ;-)

    Didn’t know about the Eurail Pass. Wonder how many folks take a train in BOTH the USA and Europe? Yeah, UN “workers” and some Federal Employees with big travel budgets…

    @AdrianVance:

    Does have me wondering if “over 18% taxes” are a deliberate strategy to break things… “Never let a disaster go to waste…”

    @Adolfo:

    I think more folks are ‘catching on’ that the ‘saviors’ are the cause. Ron Paul has a large following among the younger folks… I think someone forgot that Mandatory Reeducation Camp, no matter how marketed, causes resentment and rejection…

    @Mark Miller:

    Nice… Yeah, it fits.

  33. Adrian Vance says:

    Check out my website and input “Genesis Curve” to the search routine input box in the upper left corner of the frame. You will enjoy it and learn a lot.

  34. E.M.Smith says:

    @Adrian Vance:

    So, here: http://adrianvance.blogspot.com/search?q=Genesis+Curve

    See, that wasn’t so hard ;-)

    Reading now…

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