Saturday, January 03, 2009

Mid-West Pragmatism: The Response


I received a response from Brian Gongol Earlier in the week. I apologize for not getting back to Brian and anyone else in regards to this subject. I will furnish below Brian's email in it's entirety and I will respond where I feel appropriate. Thank you Brian for responding to me.  

"appreciate that you were listening yesterday, but I'm disappointed that you chose to criticize without digging a little deeper. In the process of comparing me to a pedophile and calling me a moron, you suggested outright that I would like the idea of putting GPS trackers on cars.

It just so happens that I wrote an essay four years ago proposing an alternative to the gas tax that specifically avoids the use of liberty-eroding GPS trackers:

http://www.gongol.com/research/economics/replacinggastax/

For what it's worth, I suspect that you and I probably agree on a lot. But it's really hard to be an advocate for small government when my own supposed comrades are out there saying "then again may be he likes grabbing his ankles". You're free to say whatever you like, but I'll invite you to name one person in local radio who tries harder to advocate for liberty than I do.

- Brian Gongol

-----
Brian Gongol
Host, "The Brian Gongol Show" and "WHO Radio Wise Guys" on Newsradio 1040 WHO
www.gongol.com"

First off, I will say that my sense of humor has escaped Mr. Gongol (Unless you know me or hear me, this is understandable). Being from NY and having such comic influences as Carlin, Pryor, Hackett, and Clay, I will say my sensibilities are probably a little different than most people west of the Hudson River. 

I will admit I only get about 15-20 minutes to listen to what is normally the Steve Deace Show. That afternoon, what I did hear was Mr. Gongol's equivocation on the subject of a carbon tax vs. an increased fuel tax. I would think unless you are left of center, a socialist or subscribe to Keynesian economics, I would think that most people, Mr. Gongol included, would eschew a carbon tax from the standpoint that man caused global warming is rubbish. From what I have heard from him in the past, I have discerned that he is indeed an educated man. I will put forth this to Mr. Gongol: You said someone has to pay for it. How about calling for fiscal responsibility and cut backs? I am not an economist, my background is American History and Information Technology, but it would seem to me that not only are we spending more that we take in, but we are borrowing more to pay off the debt. While raising taxes is one way to solve the problem, the problem I have is that taxes are a tithe and based on where the money goes, an unwanted one. Moreover, in order for me, or anyone else to pay taxes, we have to work. Work takes time and time is a commodity that is both limited and the amount we have we never know and we can never get back once it is gone. To that extent, I see compulsory taxes, no matter how well intentioned or done "for the greater good" to be a form of indentured servitude. We cannot spend our way of of debt, and it is egregious to burden ourselves and future generations with more debt and taxes. To me, the trade off is not worth it, but then again, I am probably an anachronism. Most people seem to be fine with being bribed with their own money, labor and therefore time. 

As far as who fights for liberty more than you? I don't listen to local radio all that much as I find it boring, with the exception of Steve Deace and J. Michael "Mac" McCoy. Steve would be more liberty oriented if Jesus didn't get in the way, and Mac can be just nuts. More than me. When I think of proponents of liberty, I think of Thomas Paine, Thomas Jefferson and Samuel Adams. I also like Robert Nozick and Ayn Rand (if I were an economist, I'd probably think of Hayek, von Mises and Friedman). Who do you think of when you think of liberty? Thank you for responding to my post, I appreciate it. 
Jim

Thank you for reading this blog. 


















7 comments:

Dan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Right Guy said...

Political reality? It's just another way to pilfer what does not belong to you or the government. Politicians love to find new ways to steal from the public and to socialists and eco-terrorist true believers, it's just another way to control people. Take your carbon tax and global warming religion and shove it up your ass. I ain't buying what you're selling. I do not need a group of experts to tell me what to believe and nor do I have the need to belong to any group to have a feeling of belonging, hence my admonishment, I will piss everyone off eventually, and hopefully I have as well with you.

The Right Guy said...

I removed Dan's post to post it without links, in its entirety. And BTW Dan, I am not a knee jerk conservative or liberal, but a classical liberal that believes in freedom from government and civil tyranny.

It's time to get past knee-jerk conservatism or liberalism with regard to a carbon tax. Please take a look at my post Happy New Year – A New Political Reality for Carbon Taxes on the Carbon Tax Center web site. And, please take a look at the conservative political support for carbon taxes described on our web site Supporters pages (along with somewhat less support from the political left).

Dan Rosenblum
Co-Director
Carbon Tax Center

Dan said...

I'm not sure why you don't want the links, but no problem.

Perhaps it would help if you took a look at our website and my post. You'd find that we're proposing a revenue-neutral carbon tax, which makes your arguments irrelevant and foolish. We're saying tax pollution, not work. Hard-working people should pay less taxes and polluters should pay more.

The Right Guy said...

Sorry, I don't believe in taxation as a punishment, or taxing "carbon usage". If you want to tax polluters, try it over in China first and see how far you get. Progressive taxation is unfair, as is taxation in general, but I digress. If there is to be any tax, let it be a sales tax and get rid of every other tax. Government spending should then be indexed on the sales taxes collected. I might be cajoled into a flat 10% for both individuals and corporations, but all other taxes would have to go away and spending would have to indexed against tax revenue. If you really want to do something about pollution, plant trees.

Héctor said...

I see you're getting really into Nozick... :o)

The Right Guy said...

Hey, he's a heavy duty read. Ayn Rand it ain't.

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