Can Democrats Learn From France?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by pspr, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. pspr


    Probably not.

    Ayn Rand once said: "We can evade reality, but we cannot avoid the consequences of evading reality." Witness France's unpaid entitlements, especially its faltering social security system, as a cautionary tale for the U.S.

    Two years ago, French citizens rioted across the nation, angered by then-President Nicolas Sarkozy's timid effort to put the country's social security system on a sustainable footing, by raising the retirement age — from 60 to 62.

    That minor reform led to Sarkozy and his center-right party being thrown out of office, and replaced by socialist Francois Hollande.

    Calling himself "the enemy of finance," Hollande reversed Sarkozy's raising of the retirement age, and cut employers' social security contributions into the system, restoring the ancien regime. Like President Obama, the socialist leader also raised taxes on the rich — to 75% — and began hiking taxes on food deemed "bad" for people as his means of balancing the budget.

    What Hollande's political crowd-pleasing acts didn't do was come up with the money.

    According to an official report cited in the Financial Times, France's national pension system is still going broke, with its deficit expected to grow from 14 billion euros last year to 19 billion in 2017 — a 30% surge.

    To pay for this, France's COR pension council says unemployment will have to be cut from above 9% to 4.5% and productivity growth raised to 1.8% from about 1%.

    It can't happen as long as mega-taxes and vast waves of tax exiles — from France's richest billionaire to actor Gerard Depardieu — continue to flee the country.

    Sadly, the U.S. is on precisely the same path — with a president hellbent on taxing the rich and, like Hollande, refusing to address runaway entitlements.

    France's public debt is near 90% of GDP and its unfunded pension liabilities amount to at least 200% of GDP. But neither tax hikes nor demonizing the rich has done a thing to defuse the entitlement bomb.

    Unless Hollande is prepared to make a truly free market move, such as privatizing pensions along the Chilean model, he'll have just three choices — cutting benefits, raising taxes or just going broke.

    This is what comes of the socialist left's rejection of economic reality, a bankruptcy based on what Lady Thatcher called "running out of other people's money."

    Incredibly enough, the U.S. is going down the same path as France. President Obama is no more willing than Hollande to change course before the deluge.
  2. Democrats care only about holding power. They could are less about what lies they have to tell to get there. or the consequences of their policies.

    Sadly, republicans like Bush and Rove are hardly better.
  3. jem


    france and California are very similar in many way.

  4. They don't get it. If you ever ask why the soviet union or another socialist state failed they always and I mean always say "because the leaders were bad"

    When you follow up with the simple question of "If communism etc. is so great, then why do they build walls to keep people in?"

    That usually closes the discussion.
  5. Weak critical thinking skills from dittoheads here.
    No democrat of significance wants highest bracket to be @75%. USA is not France. If France jacks up the tax rate the "rich" can flee to belgium, switzerland, etc with little cultural shock. Moving from USA to anywhere is not the same. USA is the world's largest economy by far while France is not even the largest economy in Europe.

    Choosing where to live/open a business is composed of many factors. If you want to buy a jug of milk and you have two stores reasonably close to your place of residence you gonna buy the cheapest one if they are the same brand/quality. The price is the guiding concern here since there is no after sale service, no warranty and no "returns" really. There is no continuing relationship. When you buy a car the decision is much more complex than simply price, warranties and service come into play.

    Choosing to live/setup a business in US or not has many factors besides the tax rate. US is the world's largest economy and lots of money can be made here. Regardless of the tax rate, Romania would not steal any business from here for example. US also had traditions of political stability, large/stable financial markets, rule of law, plenty of college graduates, excellent universities, the whole nine yards. Listening to republicans you would think that if tax rates went to bill clinton levels the whole economy would collapse and everyone of substance would move to Singapore. That is a shameless lie.

    The situation changes at the state level where income taxes take on a greater (though nowhere near absolute) role. California, Illinois and others are on a train to oblivion since states have to compete much more vigorously. Even in states there are limits to impact of tax rates. Florida has not had an income tax for individuals for a long time yet very few companies are headquartered here. No amount of tax rates/ or tax breaks would take Disney World and put it in North Dakota for example for fairly obvious reasons.
  6. pspr


    LOL. Just the ramblings of a mad liberal. :p
  7. No democrat would ever say it but using my weak critical thinking skills, if you tax income at 39.6% and then add in all the other taxes like sales, gas, obamacare, death, ,local, state and county the 75% tax rate probably is pretty close. You can even count tolls that the state democrats said would be removed once the highways were paid for.

    Welcome to never never land.

    The problem with democrats is that they have no thinking skills at all other than what they read on huffington post.

    Here is a piece of advice: Don't believe what they say, believe what they do. They are two entirely different things.

  8. No reply of substance welcome to dittohead land. Pro tip: Your state/city income tax rate is your own personal problem. Most states are controlled by republicans now so you can STFU.

    I live in a state where there is no income tax and my county/state sales tax would be quite low in comparison to NY, or Cali.

    Republicans want to threaten full faith and credit of US just to show how "responsible" they are. (I am talking about debt ceiling here in case anyone is slow, not fiscal cliff).
  9. Lucrum


  10. Lucrum


    So simply raising the debt "ceiling" ad infinitum has no negative impact on our full faith and credit? haven't we already been downgraded?
    #10     Dec 27, 2012