Tell Me Again... Which Of These Nations Is Communist?

Tyler Durden's picture

Via Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog,

Tax policy really tells you a lot about a government... what politicians’ values and priorities are. People can SAY anything, but in a way, tax policy is putting their money where their mouths are.

For example, politicians like to talk about technology, efficiency and transparency. But just take a look at the tax code to see where they really stand. Estonia’s Taxation Act of 2002, which form the preponderance of that country’s tax code, is 43,370 words.

In Canada, the tax code is close to 1 million words. And in the US, the tax code is so daunting that simply the INSTRUCTIONS for form 1040 shatter the record books at 178,096 words… over four times the entirety of Estonia’s tax code.

US tax code is so massive, in fact, that the Government Printing Office charges $1,028 just to print a copy of it!

And for most taxpayers, it’s still virtually impossible to file online. It’s 2012 already, yet taxpayers in most ‘advanced’ western nations still have to carry around reams of paper as if we’re still using the telegraph.

Then there are the rates themselves. In places like France, Belgium, and Germany where the government confiscates the majority of what people earn, the message those governments are sending is quite clear: citizens are nothing more than dairy cows for the government to milk.

As I wrote yesterday, tax rates across the board in the United States are set to increase dramatically in 2013. For example, if you happen to kick the bucket on or before December 31st, the government will charge a 35% tax on the value of your estate that exceeds $5 million.

If you happen to kick the bucket on January 1st, however, the tax goes up to 55%, and the exemption goes down to $1 million.

Moreover, this exemption is not indexed to inflation. Which means that the more Ben Bernanke prints, and the more asset prices become inflated, the more people will fall into this category.

Again, the message they’re sending is quite clear– citizens, even in death, are dairy cows for the government to milk.

Perhaps most shocking is increase in dividend tax rates, set to rise from 15% to as high as 43.4%. Individuals who start productive businesses are being heavily penalized. Individuals who save their money and put it to work investing in other people’s businesses are being heavily penalized. This says a lot about government values.

Ironically, the new government of the People’s Republic of China has decided the REDUCE their tax on dividends. Years ago it was 20%, then dropped to 10% in 2005. Effective January 1st, though, the dividend tax rate in China will drop to a mere 5%.

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Catch-22's picture

Was ZH scrubbed last week, overnight, when war broke out… or just a fluke? Someone?


Pladizow's picture
  1. Abolition of property in land and application of all rents of land to public purposes.
  2. A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.
  3. Abolition of all right of inheritance.
  4. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels.
  5. Centralisation of credit in the hands of the State, by means of a national bank with State capital and an exclusive monopoly.
  6. Centralisation of the means of communication and transport in the hands of the State.
  7. Extension of factories and instruments of production owned by the State; the bringing into cultivation of waste-lands, and the improvement of the soil generally in accordance with a common plan.
  8. Equal liability of all to labour. Establishment of industrial armies, especially for agriculture.
  9. Combination of agriculture with manufacturing industries; gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country, by a more equitable distribution of the population over the country.
  10. Free education for all children in public schools. Abolition of children's factory labour in its present form. Combination of education with industrial product
  11. Sound like America?

    These are actually the 10 Conditions For Transition To Communism according to the Communist Manifesto writen by Karl Marx in 1848.

economics9698's picture

The Jews need it and we goyims are there to serve.  We all need to worship the Jew bible (communist manifesto).

flacon's picture

When things slump the government panics and makes a bad situation worse, then the government panics some more and makes it even worse. Repeat. 

ZerOhead's picture

Perhaps most shocking is increase in dividend tax rates, set to rise from 15% to as high as 43.4%. Individuals who start productive businesses are being heavily penalized.

I'll bet Mitt was ready to have a bowel movement in his pants until he read the second sentence.

Popo's picture

America is the only nation in the world to tax it's expats. Think about that. You can leave, and have zero benefits from your government and yet because of your nationality, wherever you go you will be a tax-serf. The reality is you are OWNED by the government and you cannot escape from slavery. Wherever you go they will take a percentage of your labor,


To be an American is to forever be a serf of the government, and to be bound to pay your tithe no matter where you go -- even if you LEAVE.

And it gets worse -- even if you give up your passport, you STILL have to pay taxes and the USA has international agreements with other nations to enforce that policy. So you can live abroad for 15 years, then give up your passport and 9 years after that STILL be paying taxes. Why? Because you are PROPERTY.


Not ridiculous enough yet? Under Obamacare, as an expat you MUST pay for the care. Except, you cannot actually *get* the care. So expats pay a massive healthcare tax and don't actually get the healthcare.

Al of this proves that Americans are serfs. And it also proves that Simon Black's premise that "it's better out there" is complete BS.

Until these laws get changed, Americans abroad get the worst deal on Earth -- quite literally. It sucks, but its true.

blunderdog's picture

OK, ok, let's take for granted that the USA is the worst place on Earth for a minute...

Why don't you just marry a foreigner and renounce citizenship already?  Seriously.  Hell, there are a lot of places you might even be able to apply for some kind of refugee status.  The world is so chock-full of great places to live that this should be a no-brainer.

Popo's picture

Because renouncing citizenship doesn't absolve US citizens of tax obligations for 10 years. Your comment sounds eminently reasonable. Unfortunately the IRS is not.

OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

Not accurate. You can file form 8854 and if you have assets of less than approx $2 million, off you go.

Kobe Beef's picture

Thus all the boating accidents & catastrophic loss of assets these days. So before you expatriate, tip the canoe, bitchez.

blunderdog's picture

As a non-citizen in another country, even if what you say is completely accurate, ENFORCEMENT would be a major issue for them. 

I guess maybe it's better just to stay in the worst place on Earth.  What would you have to complain about if you did something to solve your problem?


Lord Koos's picture

Maybe move to China, it's a great place to live because, uh, they don't tax dividends as much.  Of course that will be more than made up by the amount you'll have to pay in bribes.

BraveSirRobin's picture

"The Jews need it and we goyims are there to serve. We all need to worship the Jew bible (communist manifesto)."

Do you walk around in your SS uniform all day, or only during normal working hours?

gezza65's picture

"The Jews are called human beings, but the non-Jews are not humans. They are beasts."
Talmud: Baba mezia, 114b

"The souls of non-Jews come from impure sprits and are called pigs."
Jalkut Rubeni gadol 12b

"Although the non-Jew has the same body structure as the Jew, they compare with the Jew like a monkey to a human."
Schene luchoth haberith, p. 250 b

"It is permitted to take the body and the life of a Gentile."
Sepher ikkarim III c 25



Popo's picture

LOL. Do you know what you're quoting?????

Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Let's see how the Commies are doing, according to their own checklist.

1. Abolition of property in land-- DONE. Allodial title is the sole province of the Federal Gov't. Virtually all other land is subject to rent payable to Local or State gov'ts (aka Property Tax).

2. DONE.

3. Working on this one.

3. Confiscation of the property of all emigrants and rebels-- DONE. Forfeiture laws ensure that if government even suspects you of a crime, they can seize your property without trial. Even if you later prove yourself innocent, they never have to return the seized property.

5. DONE.

6. With respect to Transport-- DONE. The common-law concept of the Right To Travel on the public highways and public common carriers has been completely overturned by turning this Right into a Privilege. (Driver's Licensing for non-commercial drivers, and the TSA). The only way you can travel in an unregulated fashion is by walking. With respect to Communication-- Working on this one. Almost done. The internet combined with the Patriot Act and similar legislation have almost put this one in the bag.

7. DONE. The solution was extremely elegant. We turned it all over to the Communist Chinese.

8. Working on this one, as soon as the middle class is destroyed, this will be a reality.

9. This one has been obsoleted by the internet. See point 6.

10. DONE.

lakecity55's picture

I see a lot of Agenda 21 in there.


So obvious the PTB are creating a synthetic combination of communism, and capitalism resulting in a neo-fascist World Order with them at the top and us on bottom.

I used to laugh at the conspiracy dudes, but at 60, no longer. I've seen too much.


I don't beleive they are "annunaki" or some other aliens. They are just plain Evil. If they have a Boss, it's Satan.

blunderdog's picture

Weeeelll, except for #10, no, it doesn't sound ANYTHING like America, actually.

But hey, maybe you could start a campaign to bring back child labor if it's one of those things that's so important to you.

It's a free country.  Heh.

Slightly Insane's picture

Pladizow ... you forgot one;

a) Tax everything into OBLIVION.  (Disincentivize hard work, savings, pragmatic life style, and corrupt everything that is good and moral).

Quit feeding the beast.

Lord Koos's picture

Individual and corporate federal taxe rates are the lowest they've been for 7 decades or so, yet the incessant whining and bitching about taxes is at an all-time high. What's up with that?

Have asked this question a few times on ZH but never get an answer.

Abaco's picture

Your claim is BS.

In addition to the rates being lower more things were deductible.


digitlman's picture

"And for most taxpayers, it’s still virtually impossible to file online"

Been doing this for 5 years.   That statement is horseshit.

Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Why the fuck would you want to. Do NOTHING to make it easier for them to confiscate your income.

topspinslicer's picture

it's the USSA aka Obamanation of course

Toolshed's picture

So I guess this means Simon is learning Mandarin?

dwdollar's picture

Market don't care. Market don't give a shit. Market just rallies when it wants because American men no longer know how to produce. Instead they bet against Goldman with 100-to-1 odds all day and pretend like they're smart while they're taken to the cleaners.

GoinFawr's picture or


OT, but one more for my own amusement: 

(I've yet to meet an engineer without one)


Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Silly Simon.

If the tax code were simple what kind of leverage and influence would the politicians have to sell?

ZerOhead's picture

And simplification could lead to homeless tax consultants, accountants and lawyers...

Dr. Richard Head's picture

Oh the whores....I mean the horror. 

citizen2084's picture

Think he may have meant in the western countries not just ussa.


BTFDemocracy's picture

Estonia's Debt to GDP is 6%, 6% GDP growth and budget surplus. I know where I am moving.

Segestan's picture

So Black has never heard of the Communist Revolution? Welcome to the 21st century.


Up next .........povery, global war .

falak pema's picture

hey Segestan you're an old phonograph record in the age of digital music on I-phone. 

Its time you updated your rhetoric. Communist revolution is not about what the resistance to corpocracy america is. Its about return to democracy and republic, not oligarchy rule. Stay tuned. 

Even China is moving away from communism, they call it social capitalism for the people's good. 

What is particular about this new age is that we have gone to vertical power bigtime, neo feudalism. Putinism is closer to its reality than Stalinism or Maoism, as the corporates are mainly private owned, not government owned. Both China and Russia will have to OPEN up their capital class. But all power structures stay very elitist.

The people are out of the loop. 

Segestan's picture

Democracy doesn't work and a Republic is only for the few. I may be an old dog but you havn't learned yet.

walküre's picture

Filing and paying 2012 taxes online is easy. Voting electronically 2012 is a challenge. Spot the priorities.

Communists don't have tax codes. Everyone gets paid the same except for military, kgb, politburo and affiliates.

Abaco's picture

And verifying the vote count is impossible in 2012

Seasmoke's picture

Bullish for stocks when China takeover USA

Kantbelieveit's picture

Uh, our taxes are at historically low levels. Check the Eisenhower era rates. Were we a Communist nation at the height of the Red Scare?

klapper's picture

Context is everything. In the 1950's USA was a young age population, practically everyone did something truly productive, and GM/Ford/Chrysler and the rest of corporate America had no real competition since Europe/Japan were rebuilding from the devastation of WWII. The government needed high tax rates to pay off the war debt/Marshall Plan. So tax rates were high and then that was OK. But it's very different now. America is no longer a competitive manufacturing jurisdiction so GM/Ford et al just can't increase the price of their product to account for higher corporate taxes. Back in the '50s regulations were not soaking up the business overhead the way they do now. Savings now are low relative to the 50s so increasing taxes reduces spending in a way it did not then.

taeonu's picture

So your argument is that since Corporate America has off-shored America's manufacturing jobs, hasn't raised wages in 50 years, and is competing against its own foreign subsidiaries in China, we can't tax them?  I guess context is everything.

Good thing we haven't been in a war or two for the last 11 years.

klapper's picture

Corporate America is offshoring because they pretty much have to survive. It doesn't matter whether American wages have risen in the last 50 years, which they have irrespective of your remark, it's that they are very high relative to emerging economies. In addition, emerging economies don't carry the regulatory overhead that American operations do. And I'll repeat my last point from above, there is no pool of private savings to carry spending like there was in the '50's. People are debted out and raising taxes will reduce there spending. In the higher tax brackets, risk takers in primary industry are leaving America because of regulation, high labour costs, and if not high taxes, then the threat of high taxes to support the ever increasing government sector and entitlement sector. On this last point, the issue is partially demographic, America was a much younger country in the '50s then now, and partially political. The political side is the increasing ratio of government to private industry and a society which expects the government to subsidize everyting from mortgages to birth control. Right now governments are borrowing and printing money to make up the imbalance, but that can't go on for ever.

On your point of military spending, since the Iraq war started in 2003, total department of defense spending has gone up by $300B/year to 2011, last year for which detailed spending data are available. However, in the same period, Social Security, Medicaid/Medicare and Income Support have gone up $900B or 3 times as much.

taeonu's picture

You really want to blame the government but you ignore the fact that the government is owned and run by the same corporations that they're supposedly "burdening". Every presidential cabinet is full of corporate CEOs and something like 80% of congressmen end up as lobbyist for the same corporations that paid to put them in Congress. The "burdens" are for the small businesses (aka the competition) that can't afford a lobbyist to write a loophole into the tax code and can't ship their employees' jobs to Hong Kong. Corporate America has received from the government exactly what it paid for: globalization, elimination of tariffs, subsidized investment capital, military and diplomatic protection by the U.S. armed forces, and lower taxes.

On your point about military spending, you said it was ok for the government to raise taxes to pay for the debt from WWII but somehow it's not ok for them to raise taxes to pay for the last 11 years of war. If fact, just considering allowing the tax cuts that were enacted DURING THE WARS to expire is also wrong.

I'm not sure what point you're trying to make about healthcare by comparing 3 different social programs to military spending. This is like comparing the cost of an apple to the cost of 3 oranges and saying there is a correlation. How much has private healthcare increased in the same time frame?

Also, all of the social programs you mentioned are funded by their own appropriated taxes and not put on the nation's credit card bill. Unlike the wars, which were a government funded theft of resources from the Middle East for the benefit of oil companies, military contractors, and other multinational companies that are now bitching about having to pay the taxes it cost to steal them. Instead they want to loot Social Security which has a surplus and doesn't add to the deficit because by law it must be completely detached from the federal operating budget.

klapper's picture

I didn't mean it was OK to raise taxes for war. I said it was OK to raise taxes "then" meaning America could absorb the taxes since they faced no competition and private savings were high. It's different now for sure, debt is high for both the government and consumers. I don't believe the social programs are fully funded by their own appropriated taxes. Even if you removed all discretionary spending by the federal government (military, environment, education, agriculture, energy, administration, science etc.) you would still be in the hole just for entitlements, income adjustment and interest. To fund the entitlements less interest you would need to raise $2.2T from "their own appropriated taxes". Is that what is happening?

Anyway, I'll put my argument in more emotive terms: America has been a wellspring of creativity and risk-taking in the world since WWII. However, it's losing that, at least on the primary production side. True, lots of gambling in the markets; that's the allegedly easy way to try to make money. However, the hard way, building a mine or wood mill or factory is going away, because the risk reward ratio on that type of endeavour is getting steadily less favourable. Hence the engine pulling the train is getting weaker but the government keeps adding more cars for it to pull.