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Wed Apr 21, 2021, 11:43 AM

Bernie Sanders: How to raise trillions without hiking taxes on working Americans

Opinion by Bernie Sanders for CNN Business Perspectives
Wed April 21, 2021

Excerpts:

We must end the absurdity of large corporations avoiding hundreds of billions of dollars in taxes by shifting their jobs to China and their profits to the Cayman Islands, Bermuda and other offshore tax havens. According to the most recent estimates, more than half of the foreign profits by US multinational corporations were claimed in just 11 offshore tax haven countries. By repealing the Trump tax breaks for large corporations, restoring the corporate tax rate to 35%, cracking down on offshore tax shelters and closing tax loopholes, we could generate at least $2.3 trillion in revenue .

Instead of giving billionaires a giant estate tax break like many of my Republican colleagues in the Senate have proposed, we must make sure that the wealthiest people in America who inherit massive fortunes pay their fair share of taxes. Enacting a progressive estate tax rate starting at 45% on inherited wealth of more than $3.5 million could raise over $1 trillion in new revenue from the families of America's 724 billionaires alone.

We need to establish a tax of a fraction of a percent on the financial transactions of Wall Street speculators who nearly destroyed the economy back in 2008. Over 12 years ago, the middle class bailed out Wall Street during their time of need through billions of dollars in virtually zero interest loans from the Federal Reserve and hundreds of billions from the Treasury Department. Now it's Wall Street's turn to rebuild the struggling middle class through a modest financial transactions tax of 0.5% for stocks, 0.1% for bonds and 0.005% for derivatives, which could raise up to $2.2 trillion over a ten-year period.

If we are going to make sure that our planet is healthy and habitable for future generations, we cannot continue to hand out corporate welfare to the fossil fuel industry. By abolishing dozens of tax loopholes, subsidies and other special interest giveaways to big oil, coal and gas companies we can save taxpayers billions over the next decade.

If Congress has the guts to take on large corporations and the billionaire class whose greed is destroying the social fabric of America, we can both reduce income and wealth inequality and create a more egalitarian society.

https://www.cnn.com/2021/04/21/perspectives/bernie-sanders-tax-raises/index.html

47 replies, 2817 views

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Reply Bernie Sanders: How to raise trillions without hiking taxes on working Americans (Original post)
Donkees Apr 21 OP
marie999 Apr 21 #1
multigraincracker Apr 21 #2
marie999 Apr 21 #4
Sibelius Fan Apr 21 #5
GregariousGroundhog Apr 21 #6
marie999 Apr 21 #7
Sibelius Fan Apr 21 #8
lastlib Apr 21 #15
rgbecker Apr 21 #18
Sibelius Fan Apr 21 #22
AndyS Apr 21 #13
Trueblue1968 Apr 21 #25
Volaris Apr 21 #32
Demsrule86 Apr 21 #41
Dream Girl Apr 21 #9
Celerity Apr 21 #10
multigraincracker Apr 21 #17
Red Oak Apr 21 #16
jaxexpat Apr 21 #19
multigraincracker Apr 21 #29
Volaris Apr 21 #33
Hassin Bin Sober Apr 21 #26
Carlitos Brigante Apr 21 #3
UpInArms Apr 21 #11
Volaris Apr 21 #34
UpInArms Apr 21 #38
colsohlibgal Apr 21 #12
bucolic_frolic Apr 21 #14
jaxexpat Apr 21 #23
bucolic_frolic Apr 21 #24
jaxexpat Apr 22 #46
Lucky Luciano Apr 21 #28
multigraincracker Apr 21 #30
rgbecker Apr 21 #20
DFW Apr 21 #21
pnwmom Apr 21 #27
multigraincracker Apr 21 #31
pnwmom Apr 21 #35
multigraincracker Apr 21 #36
pnwmom Apr 21 #37
questionseverything Apr 21 #39
pnwmom Apr 21 #40
questionseverything Apr 21 #42
pnwmom Apr 21 #43
questionseverything Apr 21 #44
pnwmom Apr 22 #45
George II Apr 22 #47

Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 11:50 AM

1. I am against all taxes on inheritance.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #1)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:01 PM

2. I'm for 100% tax on inheritance over

$500,000. I call it the Paris Hilton tax. Or, the Sperm Lottery Tax.

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Response to multigraincracker (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:06 PM

4. In many cases that could be a double tax.

Someone could pay taxes on money earned and when they die that money would be taxed again.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:09 PM

5. Specious argument. Once someone dies, they're done paying taxes.

The taxes are paid by their heirs.

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Response to Sibelius Fan (Reply #5)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:13 PM

6. Not only that, but by that same logic corporations shouldn't pay taxes

I don't agree with the double taxation argument. Any dollar earned should be taxed, regardless of how many people paid tax on that same dollar previously.

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Response to Sibelius Fan (Reply #5)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:14 PM

7. On money already taxed. The whole family pays that tax.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:33 PM

8. You get paid. You pay taxes on the gross amount.

You live off the net. You go to the store and pay sales tax on your purchases, which are made using your net income, after already paying taxes on your gross earnings.

Double taxation?

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Response to Sibelius Fan (Reply #8)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:09 PM

15. No--a tax on income and a tax on sales are two different things.

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Response to lastlib (Reply #15)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:25 PM

18. How about this? You earn $1000, pay your 10% income tax.

You hire the guy next door to paint your house and pay him $900. He has to pay tax on the $900 even though you already paid tax on that money! Taxed twice? You betcha.

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Response to lastlib (Reply #15)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:34 PM

22. Exactly. Just like a tax on income and a tax on inherited wealth are two separate things.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #7)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 01:45 PM

13. Hmmm, so if I understand your objection it is that money should only be taxed once.

How about this; someone earns income and pays taxes on that. Then that someone hires a contractor to do home improvement and the contractor nets $1000 profit on the job. If we only tax money once then the contractor shouldn't have to pay taxes on that profit because taxes have already been paid on money they received, right?

On inheritance. If someone gives a gift of more than $3000 to a family member they pay a gift tax on that money but if that $3000 were inherited it's not supposed to be taxed?

Inheritance is 'free money' in that the recipient didn't have to work for it unlike the contractor who actually did work and pay taxes on the income?

I have no problem setting a level of deduction on inheritance but the current levels are so high that I know nobody who will inherit enough to pay taxes on it and I know as many people as the average person.

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Response to Sibelius Fan (Reply #5)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:51 PM

25. heirs who may not have worked for those billions.... only born into tremendous wealth

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Response to marie999 (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:36 PM

32. Then create an inheritance trust law.

Its non-taxable as income until its deposited in the inheritors account. Additionally, I would like to see a LEGAL distinction between income, and WAGES. WAGES are money you're paid for doing WORK (and, you can pay yourself of someone up to 100K per year for running your business), and anything above that is legally defined as INCOME, and is automatically taxed at 20% minimum, on a taxation curve.

100K should be the maximum tax-free WAGE in America.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #4)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 08:52 PM

41. It is not a double tax. The deceased earned the money not the beneficiaries...and we don't need

all these super rich people who simply live off those that came before...they didn't earn it so they pay taxes on it.

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Response to multigraincracker (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:47 PM

9. $500,000 is way too low. If you have a home that you want to pass along in my neck of the woods,

That would be a pittance. Add to that, any investments. I’d take up to $5MM.

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Response to Dream Girl (Reply #9)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:49 PM

10. +1

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Response to Dream Girl (Reply #9)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:19 PM

17. Everyone wants free money.

How about a 50% tax on free money. You still get free money. Sounds fair, more than fair. From the first dollar on.
That might be a start to ending the great wealth divide in this country. I have no problem with those that earned it. Kids that never worked a day becoming rich when someone that did earn it dies seems very unfair.
When I was young, the rich kids were the worse. They won the sperm lottery. They had all the breaks the other kids didn’t get and did nothing to earn it. Then they really cashed in when the parents died. If $500,000 isn’t enough, they can get a job or buy and run a business they can buy with that money.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #1)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:10 PM

16. Why are you against all forms of inheritence taxation?

We preach equality in the USA, especially equality of opportunity. However, two children, one born dirt poor and one born to a multi-billion dollar estate do not start off with anything close to equality. How is that fair within society? Why shouldn't the estate of the multi-billionaire be heavily taxed at their death so as to level the playing field somewhat with those taxes used for child care, education, healthcare and the like?

An example: Imagine starting to play a game of Monopoly where one player has almost all the money and properties at the outset, inheriting them from the previous game his mother played, before the first die is cast. How is that in any way fair to the other players around the board?

We've seen that the passing of money does not equate to societal benefit. Two recent historical examples - the Bushs and the Trumps. The grandfather's money ultimately goes to, what exactly? We want to encourage more of this? This is a good thing for society?

The United States does not need to be organized like feudal Europe and a robust estate tax, a death tax if you will, helps ensure that each generation contributes to society. Carve out a sizeable non-taxed chunk, ten million, fifty million a hundred million dollar, basically enough to live on, then tax the rest heavily.

As an aside, look up the study done by Guglielmo Barone and Sauro Mocetti where they looked at the wealthiest families in Florence, Italy from the year 1427 (yes, 1427, no typo) and compared them to the wealthiest families in 2011. Basically they were the same group of families.

We need an estate tax.

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Response to Red Oak (Reply #16)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:28 PM

19. Italy is the international poster child for the socio-economic disaster of government by oligarchy.

Estate taxes should, always and by necessity, border on confiscatory. Societies cannot prosper under the burden of multigenerational concentrations of inherited wealth, democracies can't even exist. Because wealth is power, it is thus the basis of all the evils civilization traditionally suffers from.

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Response to Red Oak (Reply #16)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:22 PM

29. Some of those that inherited great

wealth in this country claim all of the ideas of Ayn Rand. The Waltons, Melons and Kocks. They were Born with that silver spoon.

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Response to multigraincracker (Reply #29)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:39 PM

33. we should make sure that its not so big that they choke on it.

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Response to marie999 (Reply #1)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:55 PM

26. So you want a class of people who never have to contribute a dime to federal taxes...

... for defense and general welfare of our country?

The current exemption is $11.7 million which is ridiculously high. Someone can inherit that money and never lift a finger or contribute and pay for any protection they enjoy from the US Armed forces


“My daddy already paid taxes” shouldn’t get you out of paying your fair share.

I get the felling you don’t understand how taxes work. Money gets taxed and taxed and taxed before it goes to “money heaven.”

My taxable income is earned from my customers spending their after-tax dollars they earned from their customers who spent their after tax dollars... and so on and so on...


If I win the lottery tomorrow I pay taxes even though all those tickets were purchased with after-tax money.

“My daddy already paid” doesn’t cut it.

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:04 PM

3. K&R! nt

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 12:53 PM

11. Corporations are not people

They are an entity created with a single tenet ... profit above all things

The human taxpayers are picking up the tab for all the costs of corporate business, ie. Pollution, over use of natural resources, as well as the healthcare costs of the underemployed

Tax them accordingly.

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Response to UpInArms (Reply #11)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:44 PM

34. I agree; and lets use a Debt Tax.

If corporations were assigned a 50% Debt Tax until the National Debt were paid to zero, we would have a Balanced Budget in Congress in about 6 fucking days, wouldn't we?

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Response to Volaris (Reply #34)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 06:30 PM

38. I like how you think

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 01:28 PM

12. Let It Be So

Once again Reagan started the ball rolling to where we are now. After an obscene amount of money the tax rate kicked in to 70-80 some percent from FDR through Carter. Reagan drastically dropped those rates and they have stayed mostly there. And again not only that he enabled right wing media propaganda by axing the Fairness Doctrine.

Reagan got us on the way to where we are now.

Now a good recent development is people suing entities like Fox and their hosts for misinformation.


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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 01:53 PM

14. Corporations will have no choice but to maintain profitability by raising prices

more than the tax increase so as to pay taxes on the extra income.

This is called target return pricing. Set a target, raise prices to match.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #14)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:36 PM

23. ........and the moment their pricing becomes insupportable, competition will correct them.

That is, of course, provided their wealth has not already bought the government and had legislation crafted to eliminate the effects of competition.

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Response to jaxexpat (Reply #23)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:38 PM

24. Competition raises prices for all producers

They will do what their competitors do, what they can get away with. Mitigating price hikes from competition will be minimal in my view.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #24)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 09:09 AM

46. Huh? I live in a pretty simple world.

A world where monopolies control their own price despite the consumer. A world where competition for consumers controls the price. A world where price-fixing, collusion between one or more producers to set pricing, and price gouging, over-pricing by vendors to profit from disaster, are illegal. Simple, yet essential, regulation to maintain a stable economy.

If a market does not provide the best product at the best price it is because some entity has their thumb on the scales. When government CONTROLS the market there will be gluts, shortages and a thriving black market. If it is the whim of consumers who have fallen for an essential misrepresentation in advertising that determines pricing then the items thus sold will have but short term value.

When, in a nation, a near-monopoly, a business alliance controls the production and sales of large majorities of commodities the function of democracy is superseded by a wealthy, powerful and very small minority. At that point consumers and producers basically have no common ground. Social upheaval, scarcity and starvation are close at hand. Political polarization within the national community exposes this threat/vulnerability in stark relief. In my opinion, this is what we approach these days. We are saved, so far, by the global nature of modern markets.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #14)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:22 PM

28. Just like when taxes are lowered and they cut prices!

...oh wait...never mind!

In the end they can’t really raise prices past the point where marginal revenues are less than marginal costs which is roughly where a profit optimization function would suggest their prices should be. If their tax rate changes and that is independent of how consumers spend, then the current prices are already optimal. If they try to increase prices this may cause a suboptimal decrease in revenue. If increasing the prices helped, then they were already suboptimal. Maybe I’m oversimplifying the model off the top of my head and it’s possible I made an error in my thinking too.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #14)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:25 PM

30. Then Capitalism is not based on

supply and demand, it’s based on what the market will bear.

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:30 PM

20. Transaction tax: Why don't people have to pay sales tax when buying stock shares like everyone else?

You buy a car, new or used, you're gonna owe some sales tax. For some reason, billions of shares of capital stock are bought and sold and everyone thinks its just fine that no one is paying any sales tax.

I wonder why?

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 02:34 PM

21. "a progressive estate tax rate starting at 45% on inherited wealth of more than $3.5 million"

Bernie Sanders has a net worth of somewhere between $3 million and $3.5 million.

Pure coincidence, no doubt...........right?

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:01 PM

27. He's not talking primarily about taxing billionaires. People with estates greater than $3.5 million

aren't anything close to billionaires.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #27)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 03:29 PM

31. That's way more than I have

and I live pretty good. Never miss a meal and pay my bills.
When it comes to money and cocain, more is never enough.

No kids so lm leaving mine to charities.

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Response to multigraincracker (Reply #31)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 04:13 PM

35. It makes sense that someone with no kids who plans on leaving everything to charity wouldn't care.nt

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #35)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 04:45 PM

36. Here's Why Warren Buffett Won't Leave All His Billions To His Kids: 'It's Harmful'

https://www.ibtimes.com/heres-why-warren-buffett-wont-leave-all-his-billions-his-kids-its-harmful-3156054

Warren Buffett built his $96 billion fortune from investing through his conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway
He plans to distribute 99% of his wealth to philanthropic causes
He joins Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg and more billionaires who won't pass on their wealth to their children
Buffett, sometimes known as the “Oracle of Omaha,” revealed in a 1986 Fortune magazine interview that he saw no point in leaving a staggering amount of money to his three children with late wife Susan — Howard Graham Buffett, Peter Buffett and Susan Alice Buffett. In fact, he said he believes that giving his kids “a lifetime supply of food stamps just because they came out of the right womb” would be “harmful” for them, describing it as “an antisocial act.”

Believing that his children will turn out fine even without a massive inheritance, he said at the time, “My kids are going to carve out their own place in this world, and they know I'm for them whatever they want to do.”

Still, he will not leave his children empty-handed. In a 2006 Fortuneinterview, Buffett explained, “My family won’t receive huge amounts of my net worth. That doesn’t mean they’ll get nothing... I still believe in the philosophy ... that a very rich person should leave his kids enough to do anything but not enough to do nothing.”

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Response to multigraincracker (Reply #36)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 05:24 PM

37. Of course. But again, you're comparing a billionaire to someone with a few million.

And even that billionaire will leave his kids well off -- just not with the "massive inheritance" other billionaires might leave their families.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #37)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 07:44 PM

39. 3.5 million is just a starting point...2 million lower than the current exemption

the off spring of people with estates larger than 3.5 million have probably already received a great education, help with the down payment for their own place, ect so it is hardly like he is suggesting they go bare foot in the snow or hungry or whatever

not to mention there will still be loop holes and trusts

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Response to questionseverything (Reply #39)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 08:45 PM

40. Check your math. The current exemption is $11.7 million per person.

Also, many states have their own estate tax in addition to the federal tax.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #40)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 11:05 PM

42. You are correct, I forgot about the former guy more than doubling the exemption

The benefits democrats want for people cost money, the only place to get that money is from the wealthy.

Personally I think 3.5 million is plenty to leave your heirs, like I said earlier they have already had every advantage possible but I am sure it could be negotiated

May I ask who you think should pay the tax increases necessary to fund the benefits we already have and those that need to be added?

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Response to questionseverything (Reply #42)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 11:11 PM

43. There are a range of possibilities, especially focussing on large, multinational corporations

and those loopholes you already mentioned. And I could support lowering the estate tax exemption, but not as drastically as Bernie and some others are advocating.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #43)

Wed Apr 21, 2021, 11:23 PM

44. So maybe a progressive inheritance tax?

I would like the first half cent of every dollar that any corporation takes in in the USA to go to our treasury

Then loop holes would not matter, leaving the country wouldn’t matter

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Response to questionseverything (Reply #44)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 12:21 AM

45. Another possibility is a VAT. The revenues from that would be collected here

and couldn't be hidden in a trust or taken from the country.

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Response to Donkees (Original post)

Thu Apr 22, 2021, 12:50 PM

47. Suggestion: Write a bill, drum up support for it, get it passed and send it to the President.

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