America, Roosevelt, & Immigration

An interesting quote from Theodore Roosevelt in 1907:

“In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin.  But this is predicated upon the person’s becoming in every facet an American, and nothing but an American.  There can be no divided allegiances here.  Any man who says he is an American, but something else also, isn’t an American at all.  We have room for but one flag, the American flag.  We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language.  And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the American people.”

The Tax System – Explained In Beer

I had a friend share this with me and I thought it was worth passing along. Sad, but true story.

Suppose that every day, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their beer tab the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.
The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that’s what they decided to do.

The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite satisfied with the arrangement until one day the bar owner said “Since you are all such good customers, I’m going to reduce the cost of your daily beer tab by $20.” Drinks for the ten will now cost just $80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes. The first four men were unaffected, they would still drink for free. But what about the other six men, the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 savings so that everyone would get his fair share?
They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody’s share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.
So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man’s bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.
And so the fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings) The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33% savings).
The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28% savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 ( 22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% savings).

Each of the six who had paid before was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.
“I only got a dollar out of the $20,” declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man,” but he got $10 !”

“Yeah, that’s right,” exclaimed the fifth man. “I only saved a Dollar, too. It’s unfair that he got ten times more than I did!”

“That’s true!!” shouted the seventh man. “Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!”

“Wait a minute,” yelled the first four men in unison. “We didn’t get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!”

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.
The next night the tenth man didn’t show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important. They didn’t have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, boys and girls, journalists, politicians, moaners, gloom and doom merchants, political activists and college professors, is how the tax system works.
The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction….. It’s simple Math.
Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

For those who understand, no explanation is needed. For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible.

A slippery double standard…

Our country, specifically those in the mining and oil industries, experienced horrible catastrophes recently. Men who have much more dangerous jobs that I, ended up dyeing due to accidents or explosions.

Both of these stories are tragic. The lose of American lives while hard at work in freak accidents. What is interesting is the response from the media and politicians. With the mining accident, all of the focus was on the lives of those lost. The President even attended a large ceremony in their honor. In the oil rig accident however, very little has been said about those that died. Don’t they deserve the same respect?

Furthermore, I have seen much discussion from the left, saying that we should never be drilling offshore and this is proof of that. I even saw a sign from a protestor at a congressional hearing that said “spill, babu, spill” (mocking the previous “drill, baby, drill”). Does this make any sense at all? Because of one accident (regardless of the size) that we should just stop production completely? If this is how we operated everything, we would not drive in cars, fly in planes, ride a bike, produce food, or just about anything else.

Just because there is an accident (or a mistake), you don’t just stop. You learn from it, make improvements, and move forward.

The oil spill is a major problem, no question about that. We need to put all of the resources we have forward to protect the gulf, the wildlife, and the beaches, but we also need to be smart about what happens next. Work to determain what caused the accident, find ways to make it less likely to happen again and move forward.