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I had missed this from earlier in the week. Eliot Spitzer ,with a very logical answer as to what could be done to help rein in Wall Street:

There are so many benefits to imposing [the stock transfer] tax. One, it generates a lot of revenue that we need for a jobs program, education, all the other things. Two, it would stop some of the high-speed trading that serves no good public purpose. Computer-driven trading, which is — according to some estimates — half to two-thirds of the volume, it’s all Goldman trading to Bank of America, buying it back. It does nothing for society, and yet, it is what is driving the market and the volatility, hurting the real investors like you and me or hundreds of thousands — millions of others. Taxing that would be good for the market on top of everything else.

This seems a no-brainer solution, and it has been for some time. A transaction tax on stock trades would help discourage churn-based speculation, and would discourage the large investment firms from doing these computerized megatrades to squeeze a few tenths of a penny from this stock or another before passing the stocks on to their own customers. That sort of trading (or more accurately in most cases, gambling) has no underlying value to the companies being traded. It certainly does not do anything for individual invstors, either. Opponents of such a tax carp that it would hinder market "efficiency", but efficiency at what, exactly?

There should be a certain underlying friction to trading stocks (or commodities, for that matter.) Stock volatility can hurt companies greatly, and often for reasons that have little to do with the company itself. Would an ever-so-slight new impetus to hold stocks slightly longer, rather than churn them, be such a bad thing?

Part of the reason the financial sector has so taken control of our economy is that they have been very, very good at squeezing all players in the market in order to come up with new revenues for themselves. The market has become rather more inefficient at its prime duty, which is the allocation of capital, because more and more "capital" is being siphoned off from investors and traded companies alike in order to support an increasingly gilded speculator class.

Small things, like a tax that would impact only large-scale speculators, could be very good for the market as a whole. It would meet stiff opposition from the large banks, which make monstrous sums of money from these practices. Frankly, we shouldn't care.

Top Comments for today are here.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Congrats to #loslynx nt (7+ / 0-)

    "From whatever angle you approach it, the present offers no way out. This is not the least of its virtues." ~The Coming Insurrection

    by ActivistGuy on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:30:47 PM PDT

  •  In the meantime, over in CA, Jerry Brown (37+ / 0-)

    has signed the shark fins ban into law.

    Let's hear it for that occasional environmental triumph
    wherever we can get them.

    " still, and cry not aloud; for it is an unholy thing to boast over slain men." Odysseus, in Homer's Odyssey

    by Wildthumb on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:34:20 PM PDT

  •  Phillies lose. I blame Obama. (4+ / 0-)

    Eagles run D are teh sux0rs, Reid is done.

    Go Flyers.....

    and fuck the world lol

    "See? I'm not a racist! I have a black friend!"

    by TheHalfrican on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:34:56 PM PDT

  •  But... but... but... (26+ / 0-)

    If you tax the large scale speculators, they might stop creating all the butler, maid & chauffeur jobs.

  •  roger ailes hired princess who?™... (19+ / 0-)

    "because she was hot and got ratings."  before you call him a sexist pig, be aware that he hired glenn blechhh for the same reasons...

    larger version

    I didn't get Jack from Abramoff...I'm not a Republican!

    by nonnie9999 on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:38:21 PM PDT

  •  But the ENTIRE Reason Anyone is Squeezing All (4+ / 0-)

    they can out of ANY endeavor is because they can take home most of the profits.

    Something both parties adamantly endorse.

    Which is why people are in the streets and enthusiasm polling for Democrats is glacial and cooling.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:38:56 PM PDT

  •  Knowing how the markets are manipulated (18+ / 0-)

    by program traders, I'm not the least bit tempted to buy stocks.  The individual investor is at a big disadvantage, in my opinion.

  •  MacKeeper, leave me alone. (11+ / 0-)

    I made the mistake last week of clicking on one of those MacKeeper ads, just to see what they're about. They might be a good program, but ever since I went there and ran a free test, their ad shows up everywhere: multiple pop-up ads (sometimes 2 at a time) when I have pop-ups blocked, ads on nearly every website I visit, a robot guy who tells me I can get 20% off. I knew when I visited the test site, and it was very hard to exit, that it was a mistake.

    I might buy your service MacKeeper if you weren't such an intrusive dick.

    stay together / learn the flowers / go light - Gary Snyder

    by Mother Mags on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:42:31 PM PDT

    •  delete your cookies and restart (7+ / 0-)

      Intrusive advertising is almost as annoying as static.

      The day is coming when a single carrot, freshly observed, will set off a revolution. Paul Cezanne

      by MeToo on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:46:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Delete cookies. That might help. n/t (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mother Mags, Eric Nelson, koNko, JeffW

      Renewable energy brings national global security.      -6.25, -6.05

      by Calamity Jean on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:51:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yikes. (7+ / 0-)

      Tip from a techie: Don't EVER click on a "free scan" from a anti-virus company.  Many of these "scans" actually install things on your computer that allow pop-up ads and other weird behavior that motivate you to buy the anti-virus software that you never needed in the first place!

      Here's an interesting article in Wired this month on one of the first companies to do this.

      •  We had this happen. Nearly brought our computer to (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        a standstill and when we called the anti-virus company (which was naturally in a foreign country) we were told that they can't stop everything and if we wanted our computer cleaned up (remotely) it would be $90 additional dollars. What were we paying for in the first place? Since the two boys are out of the house now, we get far fewer unwanted popups. They clicked on, downloaded so much stuff with no regard to what it might do.

    •  Warnings! ..... (5+ / 0-)

      First, I agree with others this case can probably be solved by deleting you cookies AND clearing your browser cache, then rebooting.

      Second, my advice:

      NEVER click applets that appear as ads particularly for (apparent) performance or virus diagnostic programs as many are phishing viruses made to look legitimate. The clever bit is to bait people concerned with viruses with ads that look like protection but are viruses (of course).

      And in the case of Macs, DO NOT click anything related to the bogus app "Mac Protector" which is the worst recent case. If you search it on the Apple blog you will find a lot of discussion on this but just in case you accidentally get infected here is a page with a couple of removal utilities:

      Haven't had the problem myself but know someone that did and it sucked.

      Another recent one is related to a bogus Flash installer, the so-called "Mac Flashback" a Trojan virus that replicates.

      Unfortunately Mac users are pretty complacent about viruses with many believing Mac are "bullet proof" or "Don't get viruses" because it uses a unix kernel, unfortunately an attitude Apple promotes by stonewalling virus reports, but that is history - the increasing popularity of Macs and iOS devices make them a tempting target just as Windows has been. While I agree Mac OSX is definitely less prone to certain types of virus due to unix, that misses the problems of Ads, internet spyware and phishing viruses which exploit browser and media app vulnerabilities.

      And obviously, if you run Windows on your Mac with BootCamp or VN Ware (I do) it makes you vulnerable to the multitude of Windows viruses, in which case I definitely recommend you use an anti-virus protection app.

      Some users suggest using spyware blockers only since this is the major category of virus affecting Mac and won't slow down your system (but may slow page loads on your browser).

      Because my company has a strict policy for internal network connected devices our Macs/PCs must have approved protection installed (company provides) and I use Intego

      which has dual OS protection (I run VN Ware). The other alternative for dual protection is Norton, I cannot comment, haven't used it.

      If you use Safari, Orbicile Incognito, a free plug-in can improve your security by blocking trackers such as Google uses to push ads at you.

      Lastly, suggest you read-up more on basic virus avoidance, some anti-virus companies such as Intego, Norton, McAfee have blogs or virus notification pages that are helpful particularly to understand what are current hazards. Although I don't use Norton, their virus notifications are pretty good.

      Good luck. I'd say go to MacKeeper's site and give them a piece of your mind but they would probably drop another adware cookie so forget it.

      What about my Daughter's future?

      by koNko on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 12:58:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hi again (4+ / 0-)

      Because your comment got me thinking I went to the Intego Blog and found one of the viruses I mentioned, the Mac Flashback Trojan is a lot more serious than I suggested, Intego has uprated the severity of this virius and some of the comments on their blog suggest this can lead to a full system crash and loss of files if your Mac is infected, even if you are running Max OSX Lion (newest version).

      Suggest you read:

      Apple Blog  -

      Intego Blog Update Report -

      Intego Original Report -

      Personally i advise people to only update from software vendor sites directly and never use the pop-up windows, it only takes a minute to check original sites and can be safer.

      Double the above for Windows.

      What about my Daughter's future?

      by koNko on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 02:58:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is good news (10+ / 0-)

    It's the first republican congressman I've ever heard standing up to Norquist with no far

  •  Huh. Ten years later and still bombing the shit... (13+ / 0-)

    out of Afghanistan.

    I get that this makes me naive or something, but I really thought we'd be done killing them by now.

  •  Spitzer's idea would be good for a list (5+ / 0-)

    which I hope the protesters will draw up soon on Wall Street. Listing grievances is good, but listing specific policy demands is more important by orders of magnitude--and a giant large-print list hung from the NYSE like the Egyptians did at Tahrir would be absolutely brilliant.

    "A man doesn't save a century, or a civilization, but a militant party wedded to a principle can." - Adlai E. Stevenson

    by Zutroy on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:44:07 PM PDT

    •  I don't think it would work. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      trading would be moved offshore, especially for securities trading.

      To stop high frequency trading, have the exchanges drop the first come, first served rule on short timescales. For example: have the exchange record bids/asks for 5 seconds, randomize their order, then execute all of the winning bids simultaneously during the sixth second. 10 trades a minute should be enough for legit tradingk

      •  Neither here nor there. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Then they shouldn't include it in the list. The central point here is that they need specific demands--not grievances, but demands--and they need them to be highly visible, and soon.

        "A man doesn't save a century, or a civilization, but a militant party wedded to a principle can." - Adlai E. Stevenson

        by Zutroy on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:01:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  It'll only be effective if it's not just a protest (3+ / 0-)

          It must be more: the foundation of a long-term, large-scale movement.  To accomplish something of the magnitude that is necessary requires a very broad coalition — one truly representative of the breadth of society and of sufficient size to frighten those in power, and those who have bought them.  

          Building that kind of coalition takes time.  And the patient stoking of popular anger. We learned from Wisconsin that we have to be willing to stay and harass the bastards for weeks, if not months.  We're still only a few weeks into this.  The specific demands should reflect the makeup of the supporters, and not all of them are known or on board yet.  All that will gel as the movement coalesces.  

          Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

          by Big River Bandido on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 12:09:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I quite agree (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            isabelle hayes, stolen water

            What we need, literally, is a counterculture--an entire social framework that exists in opposition to our current social construction. The basic flaw in our existing society--"rich people run things and poor people don't"--permeates every area of society and molds all its relationships and structures.  These will ALL need to be remade, from the bottom up. Needless to say, the task of remaking all of human society from the ground up will be long and hard. And it will require a huge organization--or, more correctly, it will require a huge alliance of many different organizations, each focusing its efforts on one area of social structure, and each in turn nestled within the large umbrella group that unifies and coordinates them all. Further, since the current social structure is global in scope and reach, so too must be the counter-organization; it is no longer enough for us to organize and motivate people in the US to fight back--we need to mobilize and coordinate people EVERYWHERE, all over the globe.

            It will be a massive undertaking, it will require an enormous amount of work, and it will not happen in days, weeks, months, years or maybe even decades. But it must be done, and there are no shortcuts to doing it.  We have to be in for the long haul. The gains made by the counterculture in the 60's--the civil rights movement, the environmental movement, the labor movement, the consumer protection movement, the gay rights movement, the feminist movement--took two or three decades to reach that level of effectiveness. Ours will probably take longer.

            •  we had a window of opportunity in 'o9 (0+ / 0-)

              The protesters are conservatives in this sense, they call for the rule of law. The real radicals are the rapacious oligarchic class. ~ chris hedges

              by stolen water on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 02:09:20 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Political campaigns and activism are not the same (0+ / 0-)

                The former are top-down, and when associated with any kind of "movement", are usually nothing but Astroturf by another name.  

                Real activism comes from the real grassroots and bubbles up those those who hold power.  

                Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

                by Big River Bandido on Mon Oct 10, 2011 at 08:31:27 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  And, they've put a call out for all things wintery (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            stolen water, isabelle hayes

            coats, blankets, sleeping bags, thermal underwear. Donations addresses here:

            Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it from a religious conviction. -- Blaise Pascal

            by RJDixon74135 on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 01:34:38 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  I cite Egypt as proof that in order to (0+ / 0-)

            stick it out for the long haul, regardless of any tricks the authorities employ, specific demands must be enumerated. If North Africa really is the model for this, people must understand that this won't go anywhere without demanding things with the same ferocity that the Tunisians and Egyptians were.

            They had a clear list hung in Tahrir, and whenever Mubarak or Suleiman announced they were gonna do this or that, the people couldn't be divided or maneuvered around because they had a specific list of hard demands, and they clung to those demands despite being lied to, beaten, tortured, charged at with camels, and finally shot at in cold blood. They knew specifically why they were there, and while every single person couldn't have agreed with every jot and tittle on that list, it was a unifying force. It was their backbone against one of the worst crony capitalist regimes that existed.

            This movement needs that backbone. It doesn't need any leadership whatsoever, any political backing, or any complex plans. The model for open source protesting can and should be adhered to vigorously, but there must be simple and specific demands to rally around and stick to. I so badly want this movement to succeed, and nothing would please me more than for them to eat Wall Street's lunch. If specific demands are going to coalesce as you suggest, that's very good news.

            "A man doesn't save a century, or a civilization, but a militant party wedded to a principle can." - Adlai E. Stevenson

            by Zutroy on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 10:39:43 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I just think things like this (0+ / 0-)

              need time to take on a life of their own.

              Sorry for my delay in responding.  I work most of the weekend so this is the first chance I've had to catch up here.

              Shirley Chisholm was right. Our Republic is in deep trouble.

              by Big River Bandido on Mon Oct 10, 2011 at 08:32:51 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  We could get rid of the computers (0+ / 0-)

        and go back to the old fashioned way:

        Now to try to end the wars we ask our gay and straight soldiers to fight. -- Chris Hayes

        by Cali Scribe on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:13:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I have to share this. (22+ / 0-)

    My ex (who is still a good friend) spend the '60s reading Ayn Rand, and then being apolitical.  Then he got drafted and spent 4 years in the navy, so he's never marched or protested in his life.  Tomorrow he is going to join Occupy Portland - he is even thinking about camping in the park for a couple days.  

    Are you listening you fat cat aristos?  After 45 years he is so pissed off he is protesting - and he is not alone!

  •  Funny you should mention stock transfer tax (24+ / 0-)

    Because there used to be one, and there were even stamps for it:

       Stock transfer tax stamp, 1944
    P.S.  Stamp collectors are omniscient!

    You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

    by Cartoon Peril on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:46:36 PM PDT

  •  Transaction taxes are a bad idea. (7+ / 0-)

    They are a Zombie Bad Idea that just won't die.

    First, High-frequency trading doesn't cause any harm. It is alleged to increase volatility, but this is not a bad thing.  Short-term Volatility only hurts short-term traders, not long-term (i.e. individual) investors.

    Second, because HFT provides liquidity. This is very important.

    If you want to see how a market without liquidity functions take a look at US Real Estate. The transactions costs are high -- taxes, inspections, lawyers, all are needed before a house can change hands. That is why bid-ask spreads in Housing are so high. That is also why the Housing market is more vulnerable to crashes and freeze-ups.

    If a crisis forces you to sell your house, it cannot be done quickly -- no matter how cheap you set the price. Transaction costs hurt buyers and sellers.

    Third, because taxing HFT will just drive it off-shore. This is bad. Currently trading takes place under SEC regulation made by American politicians. When taxes chase the business to Singapore or Dubai, the same trades will happen -- under the eye of foreign regulators. The traders who currently pay NYC and US income taxes will pay Dubai taxes instead.

    Those who support the NY Attorney General's attempt to track down criminal bankers should remember that since the trades are in New York, they can be regulated. Eric Schneiderman has no jurisdiction in Dubai.

    Taxing Wall Street is a good idea. There are better ways to do it:

    - Tax Capital Gains as regular income.

    - A one-time tax on underwriting, not trading. Tax securities when they are created, not every time they change hands.

    - Tax Capital Gains as ordinary income.

    - Raise top-bracket income taxes.

    - Did I mention taxing Capital Gains as ordinary income?

    I know that transaction taxes are a popular idea, but they are a very bad one. The fact the European Union is considering them doesn't make it less bad. We need more liquidity, more trades, more sellers and more buyers, not fewer.

    •  Given That Nations Must Not Exist, Yes. (8+ / 0-)

      Given that they do, no. And shit that goes offshore, bless it, as FDR said, let our rich who whine about our taxes go live somewhere else.

      If you manage shit that goes in and out of your borders, like you manage shit that goes in and out of your body, you let the bastards go offshore and pay the price to deal with you for having done that.

      See Hamilton, ALEXANDER. Not Friedman, Tom.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:08:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I made my stock market $ in a 401k (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      isabelle hayes

      That meant it WAS taxed as ordinary income. Of course  that's just for the little guy, who doesn't have the big bucks to invest directly.

      Without heroes we are all losers with nothing to aspire to.

      by qua on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:12:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  the little guys don't have 401k's (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ManhattanMan, a gilas girl, JeffW

        The little guys don't even own houses.

        •  Many do, small ones at work (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Blue collar union workers are little guys, just on the fortunate end right now. And many have 401k's - most almost a joke. Ours was minuscule - we put in very little. Got lucky as hell because we could purchase individual stocks. Actually idiotically lucky, bought a few Apple shares eons ago with one bonus check we were able not to spend. Maybe sold too soon, but cashed in, paid taxes as if I made all that wad working, and bought an old house to fix up - after retiring, paid bills down and set aside some to finance the book I'm working on (B&W Photography).

          Dumb luck does exist. Most people just prefer to credit their harder work than others and incomparable smarts, as if that makes all the difference. The point is that when we cash in - in the rare instances there is anything worth cashing in - we don't just pay capital gains on that. In fact it's worse than I expected - income averaging is gone, kaput. So our income last year jumped 10x. Now back to being a little guy, fortunately with a house.

          Without heroes we are all losers with nothing to aspire to.

          by qua on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 07:16:31 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I agree that a stock transfer tax is probably (4+ / 0-)

      unworkable, but how fast does HFT have to be to provide liquidity? See my comment above.

      If you want to see how a market without liquidity functions take a look at US Real Estate. The transactions costs are high -- taxes, inspections, lawyers, all are needed before a house can change hands. That is why bid-ask spreads in Housing are so high. That is also why the Housing market is more vulnerable to crashes and freeze-ups.
      If a crisis forces you to sell your house, it cannot be done quickly -- no matter how cheap you set the price. Transaction costs hurt buyers and sellers.

      Hell no.
      1. It's a house, not a share of stock that's identical to every other share of stock from that issue. Inspectors, title insurance, etc, add security and value to the transaction. Shares don't have hidden cracks in the foundation or termite damage, get accidentally built on someone else's easement or in a flood plain, have a defective title, or burn down and take the neighbor's house with them. Municipalities need to be able to keep track of who owns which house. MERS is part of what got us into this mess. Why make it official by legitimizing the process?

      The process is a lot simpler if you are using your own money to buy the house though. Go ahead and forgo having your own agent, lawyer, inspection, title insurance, etc in that case.

      2. The bid-ask spreads are high right now because the mortgage servicers make more money holding onto a foreclosed property than they would if they sold it for an immediate loss, regardless of whether the owner of the mortgage(s) would be better off if there was a short sale at a reduced price.
      What would happen to the spread of stock prices if brokers could make a profit by not allowing transactions to happen?

      •  You don't need a lawyer for a straight-forward (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        home sale. We've bought and sold a few times and never used one, and never run into problems. It's a wasted cost as far as I'm concerned. If you're buying commercially, or with other parties, then you probably need one, but not for the usual home purchase.

      •  It's not the speed... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JeffW's the cost.

        Suppose your house is worth $100k to you. But I think it's a really cool house and it's worth $101K to me.

        In a perfect world, we'd do a deal for some number in-between. We'd both be happier. But in the real world, there are transaction costs -- even the hassle of getting a moving van -- that will stop the deal. So I sit on my (sub-optimal) cash and you keep your (less-than-perfect-for-you) house.

        In the stock market, if you think your share of IBM is worth $180.00 and I am willing to pay $180.05 the deal will happen. This is good. We want you to sell your old-school IBM so you can invest in something new. We want Grandma to be able to liquidate her IBM shares so that she can retire.

        Adding in more transactions costs threatens the best thing about the stock market. It threatens one of the few things (maybe the only thing) Corporations do well -- concentrate capital so that big investments can get done.

        Don't tax the shares. Tax the people. Tax incomes, dividends, underwriting, etc.

        A transaction tax is like taxing a farmer every time he waters a plant. Instead tax the total profit made on the whole harvest, at the end of the year.

    •  Not a good argument (4+ / 0-)

      The whole "if we properly regulate, businesses will move" thing is lame.  Your logic is akin to saying "we shouldn't stop company XYZ from polluting, because if we do they'll just move to China!" or "We can't have a minimum wage, because they will undercut us in India!".

      In the end, people are pretty tied to their country.  I seriously doubt all the traders from New York will just pack up and leave the country if there is a small transfer tax.  And even for those who do, high speed trading is a segment of the industry that didn't even exist 15 (?) years ago and adds almost zero value for most people.  The world will go on without it.

      •  You analogy doesn't hold... (0+ / 0-)

        ...because pollution is a bad thing.

        High frequency trading is not bad. It doesn't hurt. It helps. It makes the market more liquid, so people can get in an out of positions with less fear.

        Remember in 2008 when the credit markets froze?  That market is a ill-liquid one, with high transaction costs.  Why do you want to make the stock market look more like the (obviously broken) credit market? Hasn't there been enough pain?

        It is true that HFT probably increases short-term volatility. But who cares? As long as we resist the urge to bail out any traders, it will be fine.

    •  Stock transfer taxes do not impinge on liquidity.. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Egalitare, annieli, JeffW

      this argument is both baseless and absurd, given the minute amount of the tax proposed and the massive amount of transactions taxed, the thought that this tax alone would significantly impact the decision to make or stop a trade is ridiculous. This is a typical trader's argument, anything that impacts the process and is automatically collected is bad, anything that can be lobbied against, like the fixes you propose, and can be avoided by legal action or just plain congressional stonewalling is good. Understand this, the financial markets are going to be reined in, one way or the other, either through the effects of regulation and taxes, or through their own inherent nihilistic acts. I hope it will be the former, as that will pave the way for transition and stability, but I believe it will be the latter, as our government seems to be a wholly owned subsidiary of corporate America.

      "Intelligence is quickness in seeing things as they are..." George Santayana

      by KJG52 on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 11:55:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That is simply not true. (0+ / 0-)

        Transaction costs directly affect liquidity.

        Anyone who has tried to refinance their mortgage knows this. Sometimes the transaction costs (fees and taxes) are so high that it is not worth trading -- even though the new bank is offering a better rate, better service, and better terms. Transactions costs protect the inefficient high-priced bank from new competition.

        Consider the following thought experiment:

        IBM has an ask price of $180. I believe it is worth $182. I will buy it for $180 and be happy.

        You implement a $1 T-Tax. I can't buy it. I would have to pay $181...and the guy who eventually buys it from me will have to pay $183 ($182 for me and $1 for the tax). You have stopped the deal from happening. Congratulations!

        Of course some claim the damage will be less because the proposed taxes are so small. But there will be paperwork, disclosures, and records that must be kept for each tax payment. All of these are extra-expensive because getting them wrong means you must fight the IRS. Even a tiny transaction tax imposes a large transaction cost.

        I understand that there is a lot of righteous hate toward Wall Street now. I say tax them. Tax incomes, tax capital gains, tax underwriting, tax corporate income.  But taxing transactions is silly. It destroys the very reason we allow a stock market to exist -- liquidity.

        •  Taxes do not destroy liquidity. a ridiculous... (0+ / 0-)

          argument that is nonsensical. Taxes simply redistribute income and your argument that taxing transactions stops transactions, especially in investment, is on its face foolish. Sales taxes do not stop people from buying products. Income taxes do not stop people from earning an income and transaction taxes are not going to stop transactions. This is a ridiculous argument  wth no basis in economic or financial fact, it is just a plea to continue the same system that allows Wall Street to escape taxation.

          "Intelligence is quickness in seeing things as they are..." George Santayana

          by KJG52 on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 07:43:09 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I didn't say "taxes"... (0+ / 0-)

            ...I said "costs".

            They don't "destroy liquidity", they reduce it.

            If I have to pay an extra cost (be it a tax or whatever), I will be less likely to buy. I may not stop buying, but I will buy less.

            If you truly believe that having to pay more for something will not reduce the amount sold, I don't know what to say.

            •  Lookit. (0+ / 0-)

              If you are trying to sell a $2,000,000 home, transaction costs can top $150,000 if you include realtor fees. This may well crap a deal, and certainly makes such property illiquid. However, a $250 transaction tax on a $2,000,000 stock sale will hardly be looked at.

              "I never met a man I didn't like." Will Rogers - American Redneck

              by chuco35 on Thu Oct 13, 2011 at 05:32:55 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  Real estate comparison not applicable (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Egalitare, isabelle hayes, JeffW

      The reason why real estate transactions are slow has nothing to do with the transaction fee. It's because each house is unique and there is due dilligence to be done every time.

      There is no reason why a transaction fee who slow down anyone's transaction.  All the trades are computerized. It's not like somebody has to open the books and write down on the ledger how much tax is owed on each trade.

      Hong Kong has a transaction tax, and has had it for forever.  I am not aware of the Hong Kong stock market being particularly slower than any other stock market.

      •  the only real argument they have against such a (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Egalitare, JeffW

        tax is the same argument they have against ALL taxes---"it's my money, mine mine mine, and you can't have any of it !"

        Greed is a fat demon with a small mouth, and no matter how much you feed it, it's never enough. (shrug)

        Any other argument they make is just smoke and mirrors.

      •  There WAS due diligence done... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ...until some really, really "clever" people decided that all that paperwork, research and investigation was getting in the way of quicker turnover.

        I see a trend here...

        Occupy Wall Street AND K Street!!!!

        by Egalitare on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 04:32:34 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  That is not true (0+ / 0-)

        Transactions costs make markets slower because they reduce the number of possible buyers.

        If you want $100K for your house and I think it's worth $101K, we can do the deal.

        If there are $5000 worth of brokers, bankers, lawyers, and inspectors to be paid, I must pay $105k for something that I only think is worth $101K. The deal does not happen.

        Now you have to wait for someone who loves your house enough to pay $105k. While you wait, there are people willing to buy for $101K, $102K, $103K, and $104K...hanging around your house...noses pressed against your living room window, looking longingly inside...unable to buy due to transaction costs.

        Why do people want to make the Stock Market act more like the Housing market? Hasn't there been enough pain?

    •  adsf... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      ...the SEC is still investigating the 2010 flash crash and it has been argued that one of the reasons why it happened was high frequency traders not providing the liquidity you claim they do. In theory they should in reality they didn't.

      Richard A. Grasso, former President (1988 - 1995) and also chairman of the board (June 1995 - Sept. 2003) of the NYSE, in a recent interview on CNBC said that HFT is bad and he suggested that a nickle ($0.05) rule or going back to trading in fractions with the 1/16 minimum should be implemented again to slow down HFT.

      HFT is not working as intended and it hurts the smaller investors not to mention that it serves no real purpose. The main ideas of the stock markets are first to raise and provide capital for industry and other ventures. Second, to provide a market for those that hold the shares to trade them if they want to or need to, but by no means was this second reason the primary or main reason. The ability to trade them also makes lending the money in the first place more attractive for several reasons, but it is not the primary reason.

      Lastly, if the greedy traders want to move to Dubai because they will be allowed to do as they please, let them. When they start having disputes amongst themselves they will discover how great Dubai's legal system works. People tend to forget that one of the main reasons why many trades are made in the U.S. is because the legal system, although not even close to perfect, works a lot better than most other places. This is just as an important feature for markets to work, if not more important, than anything else traders, bankers, and brokers can offer. Without a legal framework and system that works fairly well these markets can not work. I don't know if you remember the stories during the 2008-2009 crash of people that worked in the financial sector in Dubai leaving the country in a hurry and abandoning their brand new BMWs at the airport with the keys in the ignition. Read up on this and you will see how wonderful the laws are in Dubai when you can not pay the bills in time and the proverbial dung hits the fan.

      At first glance there are many places in the world that look a lot more attractive to move your markets to but for one reason or another N.Y. is the preferred one and not because it is the cheapest to operate in or to comply with. That does not mean that it couldn't be a lot better and a lot fairer for everybody and not just the big boys.

      "Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy."
- David Korten

      48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam

      by basquebob on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 12:58:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I strongly disagree. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        First, I have seen no evidence that HFT causes more volatility.  The worst that can be said is that HFT failed to arrest volatility. Remember that there have been crashes since before computers were invented.

        Second, even if HFT was somehow proven to be a prime cause of volatility, so what? Don't fall for the right-wing fallacy that the Dow Jones reflects the health of the nation. It doesn't.  Most Americans don't own much stock.  Most Americans are long-term (10+ years) investors.

        It is worth the extra liquidity to risk some short-term volatility that will only hurt traders. And it will only hurt half the traders, the other half will make a profit. Which can be taxed.

        Is the threat to move trading to another country a real threat? Yes it is. We can make snide remarks about regulatory systems in other countries. But who do you trust to give you a fair deal? A Emperor descended from the Sun Goddess? Or Mitch McConnell and his AA-rating? I say it's a toss-up...

        •  we totally agree on this... (0+ / 0-)
          ...the Dow Jones reflects the health of the nation. It doesn't.  Most Americans don't own much stock.  Most Americans are long-term (10+ years) investors.

          On the liquidity side of things as far as HFT is concerned, many beg to disagree with you. In the 2010 flash crash that lack of ability or willingness to provide the necessary liquidity seems to be the main culprit. The experts have said that if the transactions that triggered the flash crash would have been handled by specialists on trading desks, as they were traditionally done, it would not have happened.

          The bottom line is that investors are leaving the markets in droves because of volatility among other things. The trust has been breached.

          And, of course the threat will always exist of moving the markets somewhere else. It has been done, but it comes with many perils that are overlooked when things looks rosy. The bottom line is that there is a lot more to the markets than the exchanges themselves and many other real costs than the tax structure of where those exchanges reside.

          "Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy."
- David Korten

          48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam

          by basquebob on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 11:36:44 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  I know how this works... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      if we don't tax them, they'll stay, and we can regulate them...until the first time we try to impose a regulation, and they threaten to leave....

      I wanted Obama the community organizer. I got Obama the Wall Street lawyer.

      by Van Buren on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 02:15:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  that is a great idea! (6+ / 0-)

    taxes are paid on casino winnings. why not this, too?

    Its all just a game to them anyway. Fuck up the global economy, ooops, lol! sorry about that!

  •  Anyone looking for some laughs? (13+ / 0-)



    TENCOLE  Yesterday 08:50 PM  
    "Sarah Palin is not only Undefeated … She is now Unleashed."
    She speaks tomorrow starts then.

    Jennifer Sassypants  Yesterday 09:39 PM in reply to TangledThorns  
    Her decision showed how selfless she truly is. Most would have ran simply for the title, prestige, and the perks of being President. Gov. Palin didn't. I trust in her decision and will seriously consider any candidate she endorses. I am looking closely again at Cain.

    Kalena  Yesterday 08:53 PM  
    I look forward to her leading the a$$whooping on the democrat incumbents in Congress.  
    Also, I look forward to her driving Obama crazy.  She lives rent free inside his head and only she can deliver the blows that will make him make mistakes during the campaign, contributing to his defeat.
    Game on.  Go Sarah, Go!!!!!!!

    AmsterdamExpat  Yesterday 08:54 PM  
    "When I get through with you / there won't be anything left"
    I suspect that by November of next year O is dearly going to wish that he had contended with the Governor as the candidate (with the constraints that go with that role) rather than with Palin unleashed.
    Did anything of this occur to the geniuses at Axelplouffe headquarters, I wonder.

    Pete Petretich  Yesterday 09:03 PM in reply to AmsterdamExpat  
    She is a moving target and she can still run rings around Obama on any basketball court, even one as big as the USA.

    "He's the one, who likes all our pretty songs. And he likes to sing along. And he likes to shoot his gun. But he knows not what it means" - Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 08:48:49 PM PDT

  •  Computer Driven Trading... (10+ / 0-)

    ...should be banned or carry a heavy transaction fee. Spitzer and the diarist are absolutely correct.

    Such trading serves no purpose. I does not increase market efficiency, it does not "lubricate" the market in any way that benefits the issuers or owners of the securities being traded. At best it's automated arbitrage, or day trading on steroids. It's nothing more than gambling on a grand scale but at society's expense. If its practitioners wish to continue doing it, let them trade bets on the air temperature,  wind chill, barometric pressure, or other weather variables at every US weather station, with the government taking a 10% transaction fee for every bet. The item being bet on shouldn't matter just so long as it varies continuously in only partially predictable ways that no one can control. That way the hedge fund managers could get their jollies  without imperiling the rest of civilization.

    •  In the Roaring 20's We Had Tax Penalties on (3+ / 0-)

      short term investments --and obviously, from 1929, they weren't remotely steep enough.

      But they were steeper than today.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:09:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  it used to be that Wall Street was the way (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      businesses financed themselves.  Now, however, all the Fortune 500 companies self-finance themselves out of profits--none of them raise revenue by selling stock shares. So Wall Street is just a casino where the wealthy can amuse themselves with constant gambling--sort of like the Hutts on Tatooine betting on the pod races.

      In reading the 600-plus page report by the US Senate Subcommittee on the causes of the 2008 financial collapse, there was one word that kept being repeated over and over and over throughout the report, which summed up everything.  That word was "bet".  Wall Street is a legalized casino. Nothing more.

  •  I hope someday Elliot gets a second chance. (6+ / 0-)

    It seems such a waste not having him in public office.

    When I cannot sing my heart. I can only speak my mind.

    by Unbozo on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:03:46 PM PDT

  •  Putting up a post on Occupy Seattle ASAP (4+ / 0-)

    Gasoline made from the tar sands gives a Toyota Prius the same impact on climate as a Hummer using gasoline made from oil. ~ Al Gore

    by Lefty Coaster on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:05:40 PM PDT

  •  update on #occupyboston (4+ / 0-)

    Things have really improved!

    Please remember to Witness Revolution. It means so much to them that we pay attention.

    by UnaSpenser on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:05:54 PM PDT

  •  Kossack navajo posted a link today (6+ / 0-)

    navajo giving a shout out: look who's tweeting: Meteor Blades

    MB keepin a look out, and spreading the word :)

  •  Costs of the Wall Street Casino (3+ / 0-)

    What casino in Vegas, Atlantic City or on a reservation does NOT collect a rake ( of some form in a poker cardroom? Poker rooms are for player vs. player gambling with no house participation and casinos do not provide those facilities for free.
    Wall Street trades are similar to this kind of gambling, and we the people of this nation are the "house" that supports the gaming. We are foolish not to have a financial transaction tax to cover the enormous costs to our society that this manic speculation engenders.

  •  and make it progressive (5+ / 0-)

    i.e. the longer you hold the stock the smaller the tax. Hold it for an hour and pay more than holding it for a day and so on up to a year.

    America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

    by cacamp on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:19:56 PM PDT

  •  Very Simple rule, no legislation needed (5+ / 0-)

    The FDIC simply says that executive officers (designated as SVP, EVP, and MD or higher) can be held personally responsible for losses suffered by an insured institution prior to that institution going into default.

    In 2009, the FDIC could have seized the personal assets of Ken Lewis, his board, and senior management to cover the losses from the Merrill merger.

    You will see a mass exit of banks from derivatives trading and a mass exit of institutions seeking to leave the FDIC (and access to the discount window).

    This rule could be implemented with immediate effect.

  •  The transaction tax would generate revenue (0+ / 0-)

    but the sharpies on Wall Street will figure out how to make money despite the tax.  They always do.  Then the real cost goes up for everyone but the sharks at GS.  Pension funds, mutual funds etc will be hurt by this.  The returns on your retirement funds will be less.  But, taxes are good so why not.

    Rick Perry is George Bush without brains.

    by thestructureguy on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:22:21 PM PDT

  •  Hi there. (7+ / 0-)

    A few folks have asked me where I am and if I'm okay, since it's not like me to be gone for more than a few hours ( sad). I'm fine. Had a huge test today (not too big of a deal, it was only half my grade and 250 questions), so that's consumed me for the last few days.

    I'm here. *waves*

    Follow me on Facebook for up-to-date weather news 'n' junk.

    by weatherdude on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:29:08 PM PDT

  •  "Churn based speculaton" (0+ / 0-)

    Helps add market liquidity. A transaction tax will merely result in more market volatility and crashes, plus drive a lot of trading offshore.

    "Churn based speculation" is just "the market". For every seller, there must e a buyer.

    (-5.50,-6.67): Left Libertarian
    Leadership doesn't mean taking a straw poll and then just throwing up your hands. -Jyrinx

    by Sparhawk on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:35:08 PM PDT

  •  9 reasons why business people (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    are terrible at governing: a nice little piece I found over at Addicting Info. You can read it HERE.

    'I'm The 99%' T-shirt: Will donate from income on sales.

    by jan4insight on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 09:43:35 PM PDT

  •  This diary/post is awesome (0+ / 0-)

    You can safely assume you have created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do. Anne Lamott

    by zooecium on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:13:20 PM PDT

  •  Pokemon Black Is Ridiculous (0+ / 0-)

    I love bizarre quotes (see my signature for example) but this game tends to go over the top. I was battling a "Baker" NPC (as in, cooking and such.) It said the following:

    One loaf, two matter how many times I count, one loaf is missing.

    ...What the hell does that mean? Pokemon games are known for a fair bit of engrish, but not things that make absolutely no sense in any possible iteration of reality!

    You wouldn't really know how long it's been, since you weren't here. If you'd been here, it would've been no time at all. Forever and nothing are almost the same thing, wouldn't you say? How do you tell one from another if you're smack in the middle?

    by kamrom on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:16:37 PM PDT

  •  Wall Street profits are a sign of inefficiency. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KJG52, jan4insight

    If you think about it, in a truly efficient allocation of capital, Wall Street profits would be zero.

    Barack Obama: So morally bankrupt that he thinks people who tortured other people to death should get a pass. Likes to prosecute whistleblowers, though.

    by expatjourno on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 10:18:54 PM PDT

  •  Absolutely! Transaction tax. That would especially (0+ / 0-)

    reduce the effect of oil speculation that has been kicking our asses the last few years.

  •  while looking through the (0+ / 0-)

    OWS tag/list tonight I noticed that everyplace I've ever lived is included is being occupied.

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Fri Oct 07, 2011 at 11:04:08 PM PDT

  •  I have an issue. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kat68, annieli

    Tonight I went on a great first date with an amazing young woman.  She's a scientist.  Sounds sweet so far, right?  Well, she's an evolution skeptic.  Yes.  You heard me.  Now, I'm not an evolution skeptic.

    Won't stop me from seeing her again, or thinking she's amazing, but it did give me pause.

    I changed by not changing at all, small town predicts my fate, perhaps that's what no one wants to see. -6.38, -4.15

    by James Allen on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 12:08:44 AM PDT

    •  Dude, she's probably a fundie. I've never yet (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kat68, Sherri in TX, JeffW

      met anyone, anywhere, whose "skepticism" about evolution wasn't directly based on some version of fundie religion.

      Run. Run like the wind, and don't look back . . . .

      •  Hate to say it...far be it from me to ruin a date. (0+ / 0-)

        ..but no real scientist would doubt evolution. My dad's a microbiologist...not any sort of evolution scientist...AND a regular church-goer who kinda, sorta hopes there's a God, but has watched viruses grow and evolve over a lifetime.

        He's even into the "real Jesus" movement...figuring out what Jesus really said versus those bullshit artists Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. He has a Bible where the authenticated words of Jesus are in red (the best parts actually...turning the cheek, helping the poor and sick, etc.). He's in a reading group to this effect.

        Does my Dad believe we rode dinosaurs or Darwin was wrong? Hell no! He believes science and Christianity are compatible if you look at Jesus as sort of an awesome philosopher and strip the miracles out. Who needs them? Jesus was right about how to treat other people and that's a sort of Christianity I respect, even though I'm not a church-goer.

        My point is my Dad is a Christian and a scientist (I'm neither). But he's rational and understands science trumps superstision. It sort of floors me that anyone with a science education would DENY evolution, even a strong Christian.

        She sounds a bit flaky.

      •  She was raised religious (0+ / 0-)

        but said that after becoming an adult had grown very skeptical of it, too.

        I changed by not changing at all, small town predicts my fate, perhaps that's what no one wants to see. -6.38, -4.15

        by James Allen on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 03:09:49 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  been there done that (0+ / 0-)

      I am in academia, you can guess what field. Obviously, I have difficulty meeting single women on account of it. Last year, in the middle of a severe dating drought (still ongoing) I met a woman, a graduate student from another department, who was briefly in the course I was teaching (no, not sketchy, I'm only a couple of years older than her). I ran into her after she quit going to the class, and asked her for lunch or something. She was totally into the idea. Later that day she found and added me on facebook. The first thing I saw was an Ayn Rand quote. I proceeded to waffle on arranging a date for lunch. Getting some just wasn't worth it.

      •  I've often joked that I'd like to date Michelle (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JeffW, godlessmath

        Malkin or Ann Coulter and try out the ole "bedroom conversion" thingie--give me a night with them and I'll have them quoting from "Das Kapital" by the morning.  ;)

        But the sad reality is that, after the initial period where we both just hump like rabbits, the time comes when a couple actually does have to talk to each other--and that's difficult when they're complete polar opposites who vehemently disagree about everything.

        It may work out fine in all the romantic comedy movies, but real life ain't a movie.

  •  Lawrence O'Donnell is lost in the '80s.... (0+ / 0-)

    while interviewing Herman Cain the other night he missed the biggest story about him. While slamming Cain for his lack of Vietnam service and pounding him about how Cain's 9-9-9 tax plan is regressive, he missed it when Cain said that it wouldn't mean higher taxes for low income earners because they wouldn't be paying the payroll tax eg Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid taxes. Cain's plan completely elimintes all entitlement funding and O'Donnell said nothing about it.

    After being wrong about Pawlenty, after being wrong about Elizabeth Warren, after being wrong about... (fill in the blank), his two good calls, that Palin and "the Hair" wouldn't be running for president are about the only things he can crow about.

    O' Donnell should be on ET not MSNBC.

    "Intelligence is quickness in seeing things as they are..." George Santayana

    by KJG52 on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 12:13:11 AM PDT

  •  Speculate this!!! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    isabelle hayes, JeffW

    I must admit that the whole of the Stock Market appears to this layman to be one big Ponzi Scheme. The positive influence of the Stock Market on our overall economy has changed over the decades to be less of an investment into our business infrastructure and more into scavenging the last remaining profits off the bones of businesses. Way can't we change the rules by which the Stock Market runs and still protect it's positive effects on capital growth?

    The profits and losses from buying and selling stock is what the market is supposedly all about. But lately these newer tactics of predicting the futures of a product or company seem to have no real value at all and only goes to damaging the controls that keep our markets stable. Why don't they simply eliminate some or all of these futures? Or reduce their devastating impact on prices like oil? Certain primary products should literally be off the markets as far as making money through trading. It's like trading on the air we breathe or the water we drink to survive. Why allow the Stock Market to make the necessities of life unattainable?

    We are in control of our destiny, not Wall Street, not the Government. Just each one of us. But alone we cannot change the world. But together I am seeing what a motivated group of individuals can do...

    Thank you Occupy Wall Street!

    "I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." -- George Carlin, Satirical Comic,(1937-2008)

    by Wynter on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 01:03:39 AM PDT

  •  I Care! (0+ / 0-)
    Frankly, we shouldn't care.
    If they complain, then I KNOW it is the right thing to do.

    Help! The GOP is NUTS (& the Dems need some!)

    by Tuba Les on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 01:25:11 AM PDT

  •  Turn The Beat Around (0+ / 0-)

    -4.75, -5.33 Cheney 10/05/04: "I have not suggested there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11."

    by sunbro on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 01:34:56 AM PDT

  •  ows's success so far (0+ / 0-)

    is a graphic demonstration of the american people's criticism of and disgust with their gov't;

    the reforms discussed in this diary ought to be among the very first things the congress takes up, right now, as a demonstration right back to the people that their concerns are being addressed

    even the opposition-to-everything will find it difficult to oppose such legislation, with no downside to it, except for the small number of people who profit out of all relation to their value

  •  less a duty or allocations, more wealth building (0+ / 0-)

    and the existence of class as a matter of division inherently implies the necessity of taxes on transactions

    The market has become rather more inefficient at its prime duty, which is the allocation of capital, because more and more "capital" is being siphoned off from investors and traded companies alike in order to support an increasingly gilded speculator class

    I am off my metas! Präsidentenelf-maßschach; Warning-Some Snark Above"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03)

    by annieli on Sat Oct 08, 2011 at 05:22:43 AM PDT

  •  As Spitzer knows full well (0+ / 0-)

    Going in and out of a stock position within a given tax year is taxed as ordinary income. Every time.

    However.... you can need every single trade you make, which actually encourages taking bets because even the losers - especially even - have tax advantages.

    Were this not possible, you'd never see day trading.

    I know this because I tested a trading model that I developed. Did it work, well... I lost about 5% and that included transactions costs (and quite a lot of them) and pretty much proved to myself that buying to hold (and picking stocks on fundamentals) is the way to go.

    Had the law been, sorry CSK, you have to take the hit for all your individual gains and your losses are disallowed because they happened with in a year.. oops. I would not have done nearly so well on my experiment.

    •  you'd get a better return playing blackjack (0+ / 0-)

      in Vegas.

      •  Thing is there's no long-term happy trend (0+ / 0-)

        in anything on the horizon. Just decades of sideways.

        We've outgrown the planet.

        •  well, look on the bright side---- (0+ / 0-)

          Sooner or later we'll terraform Mars, move there---then ruin that too.

          I have a t-shirt that says, "Earth First! We can destroy the other planets later".

          I take comfort in the fact that in the end Mother Nature always wins.

          •  Mars is a farther from that time (0+ / 0-)

            than some might hope - maybe 2030s for a stunt landing.. 2050s for serious exploration.... and then...

            Well. How far we get to offworld settlement is a function of

            (a) how much resources can be devoted to the problem once dealing with ecological collapse here is taken out of the budget
            (b) whether or not human beings still exist in the 22nd century.

            •  No chance. (0+ / 0-)

              Mars is a LONG time away. I bet 100 years at best.

              The surface of mars is brutal. No nice airless place for a simple spacesuit to land on.

              The surface of mars is just horrific. Not to mention just getting through the atmosphere with anything big enough to carry people.

              Once again, no airless planet to land a tin can. That entry will be a nightmare.

              Yep, I bet 100 Years to get a man there. Now, if we just want to send a robot. Yea, 20-40 years maybe.

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