Friday, February 16, 2007

Government Regulation and The Poverty Tax

Government Regulation
It doesn't happen in a vacuum, folks. It's cause; not liberals. Not democrats. Not even government officials. It's cause by selfish, self-important, greedy people. Without those people, legitimate businesses wouldn't have to be bothered by government regulation. Business that self-regulate don't get bother by government regulations.

It's about to happen to health care. Not because liberals want it. Not because of democrats, and not even because of Lawyers, HMO's, or Doctors. It's because of selfish, self-important, greedy people in each of those areas. They are bringing legitimate business people in the health care industry to face government regulation. It will happen, and by now, it needs to.

In each area of government were regulations exist, it wasn't democrats or liberals that caused it. It was bad business people. People who wanted to cheat their way up. Their methods may not have been illegal, but probably highly unethical.

The Poverty Tax
"But, the poor don't pay taxes!" You might hear that, especially on talk radio. While the poor, and lower middle class don't pay much in government taxes, they are taxed none-the-less. It's called Nickel and Dimed:

The poor pay the highest fees, interest, and penalties of any class. They, and the lower middle class do so because the are the largest group. Banks charge higher fees. Insurance charges higher fees. The poor pay much higher interest rates. The excuse? "They're high risks."

The poor and lower middle class are Nickel and Dimed to the point where they can't get out. They can't get out from under. And now, with the increases in rent and mortgages, health care, and lower wages, you're seeing an increase in hopelessness. The increase in drugs is merely an attempt to drown the hopelessness. Impoverished overconsumption (I know, it seems like an oxymoron) is another symptom. People who can't afford it, spend money on things they know they can't really afford, because it's not going to make a difference anyway.

People who've never experienced that life, especially in todays world, don't understand. Thirty to forty years ago, you could actually work your way out. A person was able to live cash only. Not anymore. Living cash only puts you on the Homeland Security watch list. People born into families who manage money and wealth learned those skills. Managing money is a skill. Creating wealth is another skill, Keeping that wealth is an entirely different skill. Living paycheck to paycheck is a skill too. A survival skill that is difficult to get past. You get really good at it.

I experience this problem, to some degree. I have a problem loosely referred to as Disnomia. It's an unofficial dyslexia that is specific to digits 6 and 9. Unlike dyslexia, what I have is anxiety related. When I'm really stressed, it happens with 2's and 5's. Now you may ask yourself, "If he has it, how was he able to type them here?" A valid question. I'm able to recognize the position on the keyboard 6's, 9's, 2's, and 5's take. Have me put it on paper, and I might get it wrong. But, on a keyboard, or 10 keypad, I know the tactical location of each key. I don't even have to look at them.

Much of the poor and lower middle class have something that keeps them there. In some cases, education can help. But, getting that education is difficult, and getting more difficult everyday. You run into the problem of 'making a living' while your trying to get an education. That part, is next to impossible for poor and lower middle class.

I'm blessed. I know it. I have a support system of friends, family, and even classmates that go the extra mile to help me get my second education. Without them, I would be making all those extremely interesting Linux posts.

So, Thanks to:
Charlotte Thompson, Robin Thompson, Mark Thompson, Brian Thompson, Helen Allen, Stephen Scott, Brett Scott, Elaine Scott-Thompson, Amy Deutsch, Laura Hamel, Elias Khoury, ....

but most of all, thanks to my Valentine Nancy Deutsch, without whom I'd never have gone back in the first place, and would never have been able to.

Hey, I got her to use Ubuntu Linux, didn't I?

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