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Professor Richard D. Wolff Esta Solidario Com A Geracao (a) Rasca

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How do cities get their money? What's the money situation? I'll try to be brief... Because this is partly an emergency now... It's also been going on for a long time There are three basic groups of people... who provide money to the government There's the mass of people, Then there's the rich people, About 10% and then there's corporations. And the government taxes the average person Taxes the rich... and taxes corporations. Let me use New York as an example... just because we are in New York. I don't mean to pick on New York, pleasurable though that is... ♪ audience laughs ♪ What does New York rely on? New York State, not the city. The State is different than the City New York State relies on an income tax Those of you who live here notice this... And it's a progressive income tax The rate goes up... But not by a lot to those who are very rich It's a little higher than for those who aren't The gap between those at the bottom and those at the top is single digits - not very much - But is the largest single source of revenue of the state of New York it's a broad base tax and hits everybody, - individuals - and a little more if you're rich It incorporates the concept - this is important to keep in mind - That those who have more, should pay more! The tax is based on the principle... The more you have, the higher the percentage of your income... should be required to pay. Same principle that governs the Federal Income Tax. The second source of revenue is a broad base tax The sales tax is the major party of New York that is not progressive. it's very important to understand it is regressive - What does that mean? - Not only does it not tax you more, according to your ability to pay - It actually taxes you LESS...the more you have. A sales tax is the following, Its the tax you pay if you buy a shirt in a store. you pay the same tax on that shirt... does the Rockefell€r famil¥ ! And, unless you're unusual, you have less than they do. You earn less than they do, which means that if both of you are paying the same amount, it's a smaller share of their income than it is of yours. Is the opposite of a progressive tax. That is the second largest source of revenue to the state of New York. So the two big ones - the two monsters - are taxes on the mass of people the one slightly progressive, the other one massively regressive. when you put the two together, we don't discriminate according to the ability to pay at all because the discrimination of the progressive is offset by the opposite of the regressive. Now we come to the tax of corporations. A small distant third... ...let me make this real clear. Corporations pay a small portion I then did a little research That's what us professors are supposed to do, so once every four years I take an entire day out and I do research ♪ audience laughs ♪ I looked at how the three sources of revenue - in New York - changed over the last decade - first decade of the twenty-first century - and here's what I discovered... the broad base income tax rose by 50% and the regressive tax rose by 24% and the corporate tax rose by 20% Let me do that again... We don't charge our corporations... ...AT ALL!! They (the corporations) get a free ride in this state. I then did... ♪ (audience) Wait a minute, say that again, please.♪ the broad base income tax rose 50%, the regressive tax rose by 24% and the corporate tax rose by 20% over the last ten years. ♪ The rate or the gross receipts? ♪ - The gross receipts. I worked a total figure, it took into account the rise and fall of a number of firms the rise and fall of population (???) It's important because that's where the state gets is revenue So it got more out of the mass of people - a system that isn't progressive at all - Much more out of them (the population) than it took out of the corporate sector. By the way, this is a ten year period in which - particularly here in New York - the corporate sector did fantastically WELL! boasted extraordinary well What's the point of this? The answer is...What are we talking about? There's no money!?! Where in the world would it have become possible for us to say that there's no money?? Off course there's money!! There's the money of those who haven't been taxed. My research ended with the following thrilling experiment... I asked: Suppose the corporations had had to increase their contribution to New York at the same percentage that the people who pay income tax and those types of taxes did and I discovered that it would been many millions of dollars into the coffers of...of... ...the state of New York. and that now we would have available to avoid the disasters and that doesn't even ask the question: Gee, maybe the corporations should have been asked to pay MORE!! Or maybe the progressive income tax wouldn't have had a top rate - I think is 7% - but might have had a top rate of...huh... I dunno, a daring 10% You put those together and there is no SHORTAGE of MONEY! The language of "we don't have enough" should have been rewritten to be honest and to be saying the following: "We don't have enough money, GIVEN that we CANNOT tax the mass of people beyond what they already pay, and we politically can't DARE to go after the rich or the corporations" Let me show you how that's built in into our system. Because that's not new, you all know that has been true for a long time How has that worked? - In our culture works as follow... ...The mass of people PUSH - specially in the old days when they had organizations, like the Unions, and the Socialist Party and so on - They PUSH for public services, public schools, public health, social work institutions, mental health facilities, police and fire (departments), the all apparatus. Wow!! That costs a lot of money!?! So, the government faced with the DEMAND of people for services goes to those people and says: OK we have to tax you to pay for the services UUUUHHH - says the mass of people - They want the services but they don't want to pay the taxes ♪Audience voices agreement♪ Now let's go to the other two groups: - Corporations and rich people Same problem...They want services from the government to support their businesses, to support their initiatives, to give them a subsidy for training workers to provide police protection in the 'nice' parts of town, to make sure that the garbage is cleaned up nicer there then in those other parts of town and then the government goes to the corporations and to the rich and says: Hey! I pay for this... Uuuuuhhh, good! So our politics has the following economic association: The three groups all want more from the government...And they don't want to pay for it. Now, that's perfectly reasonable, in our individualist society everybody is... ...getting his! A footnote for those of you who study economics... I feel a need to talk to you for a moment because I have the sense, to err..wanting to give you my condolences for doing this ♪audience laughs♪ I've done it all my life. In economics, we celebrate the great the founder of our discipline, because his great achievement - he was, by the way, a deeply religious man - he was a professor of religious studies at Glasgow University, in Scotland... A deeply religious man, whose name many of you know, Adam Smith. And he really - you got to handle it to him - he came up with the following ideas That of each of us, goes out there and pushes hard for our immediate personal input what's good for me - screw everybody else. This, which might appear to be a recipe for disaster won't be! Because, without our being aware of it, leading us by the hand as we go and secure our own personal interests is... ...God! ♪ audience giggles in disbelief ♪ Stop it, don't laugh! [ inaudible ] God...God will lead in such that - here comes the really good point - You can see why he was the founder of the discipline...This is exciting! It will be such that if each of us, only looks for our own interest God will make it turn out, that the outcome for all of us - CLAP - Is the best that could ever possibly be We get the best for the community by never giving a flying @@@@ for the community. ♪ audience laughs - someone asks; So, Jesus was bad? ♪ No no no, Jesus, I think, fell out of the picture as it has for many people in the religion tradition but for Adam Smith he was daring, - I mean, he was a religious man - he wanted to make the point. Each of us looking to secure our own self interest, will be led - here it comes a famous line - "As if by an invisible hand" to producing the best for the community - hint - the invisible hand ( Prof Wolff points upwards) God! ♪ audience laughs again ♪ This is a wonderful idea... You don't have to worry about the community at all Just worry about yourself, it will work out. And the Big Guy will make sure There's nothing for you to worry about... If every part of the community pushes to get the maximum services from the government while paying the least (taxes), because that's what is in my self interest, I want to get the most from the government, and give them the least, it all work out Well... How has it in fact work out? Let's put politicians - hint in American history - in a very difficult spot How the hell are they supposed to run a government if the mass of people want everything and wont to pay for nothing? Is a tall order, it is a moment to feel for your local politician with all the jokes we make - not a fun job. But our politicians have proven adequate to the test. ♪ audience laughs with contempt ♪ They found a way to handle this.... How do you give the masses of people a lot of services? And without making them paying for? And how do you give the corporations AND the rich people a lot of services...Without having to tax them? The solution ...?!? Borrow the money ♪ audience giggles ♪ Very important...Borrow the money - Think, you think our politicians are stupid? They are smart folks... How do we pay for these services we give to everybody? Without taxing them? Borrowing!! To the mass of people, they don't understand, they just get the services they wanted...And they don't have to pay the taxes... I'm happy ( Prof Wolff says in an Average Joe's voice) I can go to the public beach, I have my kids in the public school, I get someone to help when I have a crisis in the family. And I don't have to pay taxes, that's what I wanted to know. I studied Adam Smith! I know! I get the best for me and it will work out for everybody! ♪ audience giggles at the ridicule of "The Invisible Hand of The Market" concept ♪ And the corporations, the rich, they even smarter! They say - I don't want to pay taxes - So I don't but government has to raise money!! So...Where's the government going to borrow the money from? - Here it comes the good part - It borrows from the rich people and the corporations... ...who lend to the government the money that the government didn't tax from them! ♪ more audience giggles ♪ So for them they exchange taxes with which should have been money gone For government bonds!! They give the money to the government, which if it was a tax, would have been end of story But no, not at all... They give it to the government, the government provides for them...And PAYS them BACK the money, with INTEREST At this point I make my second break...For the National Anthem! Because you really have to take off your hat (to the corporations callous ingenuity - added by the uploader ) Thank you all for watching - Go and get 'em!

Video Details

Duration: 13 minutes and 59 seconds
Year: 2011
Country: United Kingdom
Language: English
Producer: Professor Richard D. Wolff
Director: Professor Richard D. Wolff
Views: 339
Posted by: deztroycarter on Feb 21, 2011

Professor Richard D. Wolff explains in everyday language why the rich and the corporations should and could pay more taxes.

Professor Richard D. Wolff, solidário com a Geração (á) Rasca, explica em linguagem do precatariado porque razão estamos a ser roubados; Ou como se dizia quando o Sócrates andou a tirar o curso - As corporações que paguem a crise.

Há que fazer ver aos Belmiros deste país que ainda não chegamos a América!

Website do Professor Richard D. Wolff

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