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  •  And Meanwhile, California Spirals Into Depression (26+ / 0-)

    With unemployment up another 10%, now at 11.6% for U3, one in five Californians unemployed or under-employed, and the state ready to push through massive cuts that will add tens of thousands more to the unemployment roles, and cut salaries of government employees 15% and more through furloughs and pay reductions.

    If we define a depression as a progressive, multi-year contraction of the economy, with the economy down more than 10% and unemployment above 20%, California is entering a depression.

    There is a God, but he got an MBA. How else can you explain our world?

    by Aeolus on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 10:06:40 AM PDT

    •  California may not have a choice (10+ / 0-)

      but to legalize and regulate the selling of marijuana in order to save the state!

      I've long thought that marijuana/hemp would be the saving grace of our Country.  It sure came in handy during WWI and II when our navy needed ropes for their ships.  It sure is a nice, natural way to create oils, durable cloth, soaps, and more.

      And hey, let's face it, there are a ton of people among us who could use a bit of mellowing out...!

      And, from a CO2 perspective, marijuana/hemp plants can grow to be very large.  They could play a friendly role when it comes to cleaning up our air quality!

      •  If it can't legalize medical pot (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PsychoSavannah, farbuska

        How can it legalize recreational pot?  The Feds would have to give a waiver, and I can't see that happening any time soon.   Not that legalization and taxation wouldn't make sense.

        Democracy needs accountability. Investigate and prosecute the Torture Thirteen.

        by Mimikatz on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 11:17:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  California is in a state of desperation (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BYw, JG in MD

          and desperate times call for desperate measures.  It's being considered at some level of seriousness; a report was released recently stating that over a million in tax revenue would go to the state if pot were legalized and regulated.

          It is a long shot; of course, but when options are limited, it is not out of bounds to think that this may come to fruition.  Even while Big Tobacco screams and tantrums!

        •  Huh? "Can't legalize medical pot?" It IS (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tmo, KenBee, kurt, BYw, JG in MD

          legal when used for medical purposes. From the California Dept. of Public Health web site:

          The Medical Marijuana Program (MMP) was established to provide a voluntary medical marijuana identification card issuance and registry program for qualified patients and their caregivers.  The web-based registry system allows law enforcement and the public authorization to possess, grow, transport and/or use Medical Marijuana in California.  To facilitate the verification of authorized cardholders, the verification database is available on the internet at

          In 2003, Senate Bill (SB) 420 (Chapter 875, Statutes of 2003) was passed as an extension and clarification of Proposition 215, the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.  The Medical Marijuana Program, within CDPH, is administered through a patient's county of residence.  Upon obtaining a recommendation from their physician for use of medicinal marijuana, patients and their primary caregivers may apply for and be issued, a Medical Marijuana Identification Card.  Senate Bill 420 also required that the MMP be fully supported through the card application processing fees.  Both the state and the counties have authority to cover their costs for the program through these application fees.

          The Tyranny of the Minority - WHY did 60 become the new 51?

          by 1BQ on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 11:24:26 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  Tax financial transactions (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PsychoSavannah, kurt, seekerudition

        Even 1/10 of one cent per dollar of every transaction, stock and bond trading, ATM withdrawals, everything, we'd get enough money to pay for lots of good stuff, maybe even pay for single ayer medical care.

        •  That's too comprehensive. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          It's perfectly feasible to add a small "stamp tax" on stock and bond purchases/sales, and it would provide an incentive for long-term investing rather than short-term churning.

          But ATM withdrawals?!?!?!?  That's insane.  People don't want to be taxed for withdrawing money from their checking account!

          -5.63, -8.10. Learn about Duverger's Law.

          by neroden on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 01:49:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  LOL (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            What is the difference between being nicked on checking/savings bank withdrawals and being nicked when you sell 100 shares of Intel (or GM or a mutual fund for that matter.)

            Oh Barry, they are turning Health Care into an Actuary's wet dream.

            by fredlonsdale on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 02:51:21 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Because the money in your (0+ / 0-)

              bank account has probably already been taxed as income, and nearly everyone has to have a bank account. Owning investments is optional. A better option is to tax stock transactions only which reduces short-term sell and buy churn in the market, and tax capital gains at the same rate as payroll/wage income. You aren't making money on withdrawals from bank accounts, but stocks and bonds are investments for the purpose of making money, and therefore should be subjected to taxation.

              "There's a bailout coming, but it's not for me, it's for all the creeps watching the ticker on TV"-Neil Young

              by NoMoreLies on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 06:38:58 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Tax every transaction (0+ / 0-)

                Tax every check written, whether by a corporation, partnership, or individual.

                But relax. I said start with 1/10th of one per cent. Go to an ATM of another bank from where you have your account and you will pay $2 or $3 for doing that. Your check would have to exceed $2,000 to equal the fee that bank is charging for every amount of any size.

              •  Not to get into an endless arguement... (0+ / 0-)

                But a bank deposit is as much an investment as buying a stock or bond. There are people that keep significant dollars in an insured bank account as a conservative investment. There is no difference between putting 200,000 in a bank savings account and 200,000 in a money market mutual fund. Post bailout, there is even less of a difference in terms of risk because they granted insurance to the money market mutual funds a'la FDIC.

                You are correct that investing in stocks is optional when you control the money. It is not discretionary when you have money in a pension plan or other investment scheme. Putting you money in a bank account is also optional. You can keep your money in your mattress. You can keep a cash account with a broker. Or you can buy gold.

                After our recent experience, people think twice about about more than FDIC insured limit in banks.

                If you want to discourage speculation or excessive trading in stocks and bonds, then you can tax transactions. But the impact of an x% transaction tax is the same on someone who trades their stock on a weekly basis or someone who buys and holds a stock for 20 years or more. It just takes longer to collect the tax.

                Oh Barry, they are turning Health Care into an Actuary's wet dream.

                by fredlonsdale on Sat Jul 18, 2009 at 10:14:26 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Well put (0+ / 0-)

                  Not to get into an endless argument, but you make my case better than I did!

                  I know that Brazil put a tax on all financial transactions some years back. I don't know if they kept it. But I suspect they did. And coincidentally Brazil's governmental finances and economic performance have been relatively better in the past decade or two. Um, relatively better than their previous performance no doubt, and by some accounts, better than the performance of the U.S. Truly do not know what other countries do, but I saw one claim that every developed country except the US has a financial transactions tax.

                  Seems to me the transaction tax is difficult to avoid, because basically the banks collect it, and they are audited and regulated fairly well.

                  And the tax falls nice and heavy on two industries famous for tax avoidance: real estate and Wall Street. Of course, Wall Street screams when anyone suggests a financial transactions tax. That alone is good enough reason for me to support it!

                  •  Brazil ended the 0.38% financial transaction tax (0+ / 0-)

                    Brazilian lawmakers axe financial transaction tax.

                    It is one thing to impose a tax to raise revenues and another thing to impose a tax to influence behavior. I would support a progressive consumption tax... a national sales tax that would provide relief to lower income people through the internal revenue code even if those low income people do not earn enough to pay a a federal income tax. But that is not what was being discussed. We were talking about a financial investment tax as opposed to a tax that would be applied to all money transactions which I view as unfair. Not all investors are engaged in practices that will destroy our economy.

                    Oh Barry, they are turning Health Care into an Actuary's wet dream.

                    by fredlonsdale on Sun Jul 19, 2009 at 01:18:15 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

      •  Driving while stoned (0+ / 0-)

        I can't wait for this pandemic.  I don't live in California.

    •  California has 13% of country's GDP...scary! (13+ / 0-)

      Thinking about how this will affect the US economy as a whole is scary as hell. So much of California is tied into the rest of the country's economy and can't help but have a negative impact.

      Will this drag the rest of the economy down and lead to higher unemployment nationwide?

      They tortured people to get false confessions to fraudulently justify our invading Iraq.

      by legendmn on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 10:43:06 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  More likely result is higher food prices (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmo, CharlieHipHop, JG in MD, blueocean

        The Tyranny of the Minority - WHY did 60 become the new 51?

        by 1BQ on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 11:25:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Just wait until the riots start, because that is (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        not very far off, since there is absolutely nothing being done to stop the bleeding.  No safeguards being put back into place for financial reform (let the raping continue), and no rebuilding of our manufacturing base, which is the only thing that held up the middle class for a decent living wage and a bit of dignity.  

        'The beatings will continue until morale improves.' And the 'Pixie Dust' all around President Obama is wearing off mighty fast with the Wall Street crowd he fully supports.

        The Democrats are the new Republicans. Congressional Corporate Whores peeing on our shoes and telling us its raining.

        by Badabing on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 04:14:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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