7 thoughts on “Imagine

  1. I should add to that. There’s the old story that if you ask people if they’d rather pay for extra for services from the government or have lower taxes they’d say they’d prefer more services. (Of course that’s until you ask them to pay up – but that’s another issue). I usually counter with a tax example where you succinctly outline the true amount of tax people are paying. For example, I used one the other night on talkback radio to counter environmental arguments to increase the fuel levy. Just put forward the truth: say you’re going to earn some money to buy some fuel for your car – for every litre (at $1.18/litre) you buy you’ll need to earn $1.68, from that you’ll give the government 50c in income tax, 10c in GST and 37c in fuel levy. So, all in all, around 57% of the money goes to the government. You can only support that if you really believe that people should sacrifice their quality of life for the good of the government. Imagine what you could do with that money in terms of child’s development. Imagine what good you could do in the community. Do you believe the government can spend all that money better than you can ? How about we gave them a third of it instead? Would that be more reasonable?

  2. Michael- a clarification, please.
    You talk about us having all this extra money, but won’t a lot of it go onto things that the government ‘does for/to’ us now, except we’ll have to choose what to do? For instance, education for the kiddles is ‘provided’ for us now, so we don’t do as much as we would have to do if it were all private. Hence, some time in choosing what to do will be used that otherwise would not be. And defence is ‘provided’ by the powers-that-bedazzle, so we don’t worry as much as under a wholly private scheme- I guess we’d be comparing insurance rates, and how good the forces did in the Security forces Olympics!
    I do think that these extra choices will cut into some of that time and money, though I would still prefer living taxlessly.

  3. Removing the tax is a backwards way of looking at things. We really need the laws/regulation removed.

    Taxes are expensive because prices are driven up by artifical laws and regulations. Remove the laws and regulations and private companies, if they are truely more efficient, will under-cut the goverments cost of education, health, police, road maintaince etc. etc. and the taxes will fall as the goverment pays the private companies to provide the services instead of paying extra to do it in-house.

    We would be much better pushing for this than an utterly unworkable and unrealistic situation of just canning taxes overnight.

  4. Ozzie, you know the deal so I’ll just speak from my own experience.

    I’m certain I could do better for myself and those I’m responsible for if I have more control over how the money is spent on essential services than if the government provides these things for me. My family has private health insurance and it’s worth the money. I’m a product of the state school system and my kids aern’t being subjected to that garbage. I know both these things are partially funded by the government, but I wish they weren’t and I could be relieved of the tax burden and spend it myself. I don’t think I’m a big consumer of public services – if there’s a private option I tend to use it, whether that be highways (toll roads), recreational facilities, security services etc. I hate contact with government officials so I tend to avoid them. I don’t want the government making these choices for me because they’re crap at it and what they provide me is based on the lowest common denominator.

    Although I work for Defence, I spend much of my time reminding people how bad it is at managing ‘public’ money and I assure you it is abysmally wasteful. The same level of security could be provided much more cheaply by other means and lots of its money really just goes to fixing up its mistakes or covering for bad decisions made earlier.

    I would much prefer control over where my money goes and I’m willing to spend the extra time to ensure it’s spent in a way that benefits me according to my preferences. I understand other people would prefer the government to do this for them and that’s fine. They should be able to opt in to a higher tax rate and get these services, and I should be able to opt for lower taxes and pay for these things myself.

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