It’s fun to charter an accountant…

February 27th, 2008 by De Onion

It seems that the American Republicans have similar issues when it comes to financial responsibility, both in government spending and internal accounting with the BIU years behind in its financial reporting, and the PLP desperately trying to avoid accountability in government here’s a link on some potential scandal in the USA.

When it comes to the nation’s finances, Republicans in Washington have shown, shall we say, a certain lackadaisical attitude. Deficits, debts, expensive tax giveaways, lax regulations on the financial industry, Enron-omics — when it comes to looking after our money, GOP officials don’t exactly inspire confidence.

But what about when they’re tasked with looking after their own money? Well, it’s a funny story, actually.

The comments are also interesting, as they match up well to what appears to have happened in Bermuda.

I view this as expected evolution. Here’s my take:

The Republican Party set out To Win. Probably, despite some of the sleaziness of decades ago, with some actual belief they had the best interests of America at heart.

Of course setting out To Win means winning is your first goal. It means taking any ally, any donation, any help, doing anything. Winning is first, and soon whatever actual intentions, winning is everything.

Thus the Republicans of course became the party for monied interests, for powermongerers, for people without ethics or principal. When winning is your only goal, you don’t care about your allies.

Eventually the party ends up as nothing more than a club of people advancing their own interests, and their affiliated groups: the wingnut welfare writers, Fox news, think tanks with no connection to reality, etc.

So now of course the Republican party is filled with unethical opportunists.

Vote Democrat.

Government Spending

February 21st, 2008 by De Onion

Here’s a good blog post on government spending.

One Salient Oversight

Keep this in mind when reading the budget…

Tax Incidence

February 17th, 2008 by De Onion

Since the budget has now been released (again not showing any great detail) and with a number of tax increases I think the vocab words of the day should be Tax Incidence

In economics, tax incidence is the analysis of the effect of a particular tax on the distribution of economic welfare. Tax incidence is said to “fall” upon the group that, at the end of the day, bears the burden of the tax. The key concept is that the tax incidence or tax burden does not depend on where the revenue is collected, but on the price elasticity of demand and price elasticity of supply. For example, a tax on apple farmers might actually be paid by owners of agricultural land or consumers of apples.

The artificial separation of tax between employers and employees has always been quite funny to me. These things can’t be legislated and it’s quite likely that employees bear a substantial chunk of the increase in tax… to say nothing of the reverse accelerator effect from the increases in government consumption… or that borrowing on negative expected return capital projects is a doubly bad idea… and I won’t go too much into the increase in tax on boats to 55% other than to say that I wouldn’t be surprised if this causes revenue to fall as people stop importing boats (I know of at least one luxury boat owner who will not be bringing in his boat as a result), and also risks lives as people bring in less seaworthy boats. Clearly this government’s interest in the “fishing culture” exists only as long as we’re talking about large scale long line fishermen… of course this pales in comparison to the lip service paid to “citrus culture” while simultaneously inducing a building boom through zoning, immigration, and SDOs.