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Sun May 10, 2015, 01:13 PM

Ben Carson Unable to to Answer Simple Questions about his Tax Plan

Source: Think Progress

Dr. Ben Carson, now a Republican presidential candidate, has long proposed a “flat tax” for the country, citing the Bible’s tithing as his inspiration. As he reiterated Sunday morning on Fox News Sunday, he supports the idea of a “proportional tax,” one in which “you pay according to your ability.” A flat tax would require everybody in the country to pay the same percentage of their income as tax, regardless of how much or how little they make, and most variations include eliminating deductions and loopholes. Carson thinks it’s “condescending” to suggest it’s not fair that poor people can’t afford to pay their share because “poor people have pride, too” and “don’t want to be just taken care of.”

But on Sunday, host Chris Wallace confronted Carson with tax experts, who found that to raise the same amount of revenue the federal government currently takes in, the government would have to impose a 20 percent tax across the board. (The Tax Policy Center argues it would have to be at least 25 percent.) “Middle incomes would get a tax hike and wealthy families would get a tax cut,” Wallace explained. Carson countered that he simply didn’t “agree with that assessment.” He then admitted that according to the economists he’s consulted, if loopholes and deductions are eliminated, it would still have to be between 10 and 15 percent — but it wouldn’t be 20 percent.

Wallace followed up by asking about low-income families, who not only don’t pay taxes, but usually receive an earned income tax credit instead. “Now you’ll have them pay 10 to 15 percent of income they have — or 20 percent if my experts are right. A lot of independent studies say the people that make like bandits in this are the wealthy.”

Carson could only then offer a vague explanation about how his tax plan is part of “an overall complex program” that involves “reorienting the way we do things in government.” The candidate said he wants to run the government “more like a business” instead of “this great inefficient behemoth we have right now,” including generating revenue by “utilizing our energy resources.” Part of his plan also includes “revamping corporate taxes and bringing in money that’s overseas by giving a tax holiday,” claiming that would bring in “$2 trillion right there.”


Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2015/05/10/3657141/ben-carson-flat-tax/



No one ever expected Republicans to follow any logical line of thought.

53 replies, 5623 views

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Reply Ben Carson Unable to to Answer Simple Questions about his Tax Plan (Original post)
question everything May 2015 OP
MrScorpio May 2015 #1
Plucketeer May 2015 #10
radhika May 2015 #2
Mz Pip May 2015 #6
SheilaT May 2015 #51
BrotherIvan May 2015 #12
erronis May 2015 #39
BrotherIvan May 2015 #41
awoke_in_2003 May 2015 #45
BrotherIvan May 2015 #46
Fred Sanders May 2015 #3
justhanginon May 2015 #4
question everything May 2015 #11
bravenak May 2015 #26
Adsos Letter May 2015 #30
bravenak May 2015 #31
Cryptoad May 2015 #5
Blue_Adept May 2015 #7
procon May 2015 #20
BumRushDaShow May 2015 #8
Ezlivin May 2015 #9
red dog 1 May 2015 #18
Coventina May 2015 #43
Joe Chi Minh May 2015 #13
thesquanderer May 2015 #40
7962 May 2015 #47
Joe Chi Minh May 2015 #50
SamKnause May 2015 #14
valerief May 2015 #15
alterfurz May 2015 #16
TheDebbieDee May 2015 #32
Tom Ripley May 2015 #38
red dog 1 May 2015 #17
cosmicone May 2015 #19
progree May 2015 #21
jorgebob28 May 2015 #22
Gothmog May 2015 #23
jmowreader May 2015 #24
7962 May 2015 #48
lastlib May 2015 #25
erpowers May 2015 #27
yellowcanine May 2015 #28
Adsos Letter May 2015 #29
Cha May 2015 #33
JustABozoOnThisBus May 2015 #34
Tom Ripley May 2015 #37
LibertyLover May 2015 #35
Sunlei May 2015 #36
Coventina May 2015 #42
Rafale May 2015 #44
Monk06 May 2015 #49
rogerashton May 2015 #52
Gothmog May 2015 #53

Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:24 PM

1. The best way to get ahead in today's Republican Party is by being completely incompetent...

To them, not knowing that your entire faith-based belief system is nothing more than a load of malarky puts you at an advantage.

Unfortunately, it only makes them fight against the reality-based world just that much harder.

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Response to MrScorpio (Reply #1)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:17 PM

10. I agree

 

the sad thing is, these fantasies resonate with so much of our dim-witted, non-analytical populace. Hell, if a simple majority of Americans could think an figure out truths, the GOP wouldn't exist!

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:38 PM

2. Id' love to hear from colleagues and former patients - what was he like BITD?

As we listen to Carson more and more, free form responses, it gets eerier. Jacob and Esau ties to Islam, slavery, anti-healthcare etc. He's one seriously strange dude, with questions as to his reality space. But apparently, his surgical work was excellent in a rare and challenging specialty.

What I wonder about is this: patients and families often get to know the surgeon over many months. Sharing their fears with him, putting their lives and futures in his hand. Looking to him for confidence and support.

What was it like interacting with him, professionally. Was he that visible a wing-but crazy?

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Response to radhika (Reply #2)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:53 PM

6. I wonder why he left.

He retired pretty early, 51 IIRC.

I suppose it's not uncommon for someone who is really talented in one field to be arrogant enough to think it makes them qualified to excel in something completely unrelated. As far as I can tell this guy hasn't even been on a city council.

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Response to Mz Pip (Reply #6)

Fri May 15, 2015, 07:01 AM

51. You've hit on an important point.

 

" it's not uncommon for someone who is really talented in one field to be arrogant enough to think it makes them qualified to excel in something completely unrelated."

Doctors are the very worst at this. I don't understand, but there's something about becoming a doctor that makes a person think he's totally qualified in everything else. Most of the rest of us get it that just because we know a lot about astrophysics or road repair or inpatient registration, we don't know everything else. But doctors? They somehow think that becoming a physician means they magically know everything else about the universe.

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Response to radhika (Reply #2)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:22 PM

12. I like the term "reality space"

That does describe what I've been unable to name in many people these days. I think because the news is propaganda now, facts and science and logic have been replaced by opinion and religion. It's off-putting and bizarre.

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Response to BrotherIvan (Reply #12)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:12 PM

39. How do they even negotiate real life with real bureaucracies?

I also like "reality space" and hope I don't live in my own little bubble. Wish I could but reality gets in the way.

Reminds me a bit of old GHWB (remember the shrub's old man?) who had no f'in idea of how much milk cost in the grocery store.

I think every presidential wannabe should have to spend one year just before announcing surviving on minimal wage. No nice meals, no private bedrooms, no personal transport, no extra cash, no steaks, no fish, cruises, etc. Since most of them have sucked at silver nipples all their lives, it is appropriate that they should learn how the other non-0.01% live.

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Response to erronis (Reply #39)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:41 PM

41. It's a dangerous bubble that people have no idea about

These are people who think it's no big deal if your job is shipped overseas. Just get another one! They can't even fathom the thought of choosing between food and medicine or being a bright kid who can't go to college. They don't know the depression of living in the inner city with an occupying police force. They don't know the mounting fear and anger. They only know their wine and dine world. Why do you think they're always laughing at that travesty, the Correspondent's Dinner? And we all get to watch the footage and titter at them in tuxes and champagne. Isn't it special?

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Response to BrotherIvan (Reply #41)

Mon May 11, 2015, 08:03 PM

45. Good point about the correspondent's dinner

 

It has always made my skin crawl a bit.

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Response to awoke_in_2003 (Reply #45)

Mon May 11, 2015, 09:14 PM

46. wink wink

yuck yuck ain't it great to be RICH? Blech.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:38 PM

3. Ignorance is blissful, and who is more blissful than a True Believer? All things are ever so simple.

It is not called the opium of the masses for no reason.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:40 PM

4. Maybe forget about this running for president thing and

go back to surgeoning. You don't seem to know what the hell you are talking about when it comes to running a country and we certainly don't need that having suffered thru the Bush years. You need more than a big ego to be taken seriously as a candidate.

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Response to justhanginon (Reply #4)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:18 PM

11. Honestly, I will douby his surgical abilities

I have to wonder how good it was in the past. He made his fame by separating conjoined twins in the head - this is great. But what else has he done?

And, at 51, I would not trust his precision in operating on babies. Yes, I know, there probably are excellent surgeons in their 50s and 60s, but human nature puts the odds against it.

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Response to question everything (Reply #11)

Sun May 10, 2015, 08:12 PM

26. I believe he was an excellent surgeon.

 

And a terrible politician and an angry man with a violent past. Any man who stabs a friend as a teen is pretty angry and violent. I think stabbing a dude should disqualify him. I have no idea why it doesn't.

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Response to bravenak (Reply #26)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:14 PM

30. "I think stabbing a dude should disqualify him. I have no idea why it doesn't."

It's the Andrew Jackson style in American politics.

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Response to Adsos Letter (Reply #30)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:17 PM

31. Fucking outrageous is what it is. A little toke of weed/bad hair shocks people, but stabbing a guy, meh.

 

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:49 PM

5. Oh,,,,,, how quickly these Republican Christains forget

how Jesus spoke several times about the relative value of money to a person's wealth, making a flat tax the most un-Christain tax of all taxes.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:58 PM

7. Government is not a business.

Flat and simple.

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Response to Blue_Adept (Reply #7)

Sun May 10, 2015, 04:34 PM

20. I keep saying the same thing.

I guess that's the only comparison that fits the simple minded narrative voters are able to grasp. Just like a flat tax sounds so American, so fair and equal for everyone... if you don't look past the bunting and sparklers.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:05 PM

8. "...bringing in money that’s overseas by giving a tax holiday,"



There are simply not enough adequate emoticons to even get close to reflecting the moldy word salad that is his response.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:17 PM

9. Dammit Jim, I'm just a doctor

That should be his stock answer from now on.

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Response to Ezlivin (Reply #9)

Sun May 10, 2015, 03:27 PM

18. Good one!

Even William Shatner would make a better POTUS than Ben Carson

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Response to red dog 1 (Reply #18)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:49 PM

43. Shatner's Canadian, and unfortunately DeForrest Kelly is deceased.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:23 PM

13. He's an absolute shocker! It's not that unusual with types

who pull themselves up by their bootstraps.

Heck, the gross injustice of a flat tax is anything but rocket-science. It has to be, if I can understand it. And he's arguing with the experts about the net effect of it on the poorer folk! 'Snake-oil salesman' doesn't begin to convey this guy's disingenuous waffle.

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Response to Joe Chi Minh (Reply #13)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:28 PM

40. A "flat" tax can be progressive if you make one change

If you exempt the first $50k (for example) of someone's income, but just have a single flat rate above that with absolutely no deductions, then you have the benefits of simplicity/transparency in the tax system, without hurting low income people.

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Response to thesquanderer (Reply #40)

Mon May 11, 2015, 10:31 PM

47. Exactly. Everyone gets the same exemption. That way the poor are exempted. nt

 

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Response to thesquanderer (Reply #40)

Fri May 15, 2015, 05:29 AM

50. Absolutely right, though I doubt that's the right-wing's rationale.

Although once initiated, they could then reduced the threshold again with impunity for a long time; justifying it n the grounds of inflation, while exaggerating it, then excusing it as, in part, a little anticipatory, as well. Just so they didn't have to do it too often!

But lower-paid workers should not have to pay income tax. Adam Smith, the right wing's putative capitalist guru, recommended that payments should be proportionate to income, in which case the rich would probably be astronomically higher tax.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:42 PM

14. Ben is as clueless

as Herman 999.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:50 PM

15. I'd be terrified to let him cut open my skull. nt

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:52 PM

16. Carson campaign pitch:

"America has had an idiot president, and then a black president--now it's time for an idiot black president!"

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Response to alterfurz (Reply #16)

Mon May 11, 2015, 12:18 AM

32. Lololololol!

 

I hope you don't mind if I borrow your campaign pitch - it's HI-larious!

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Response to alterfurz (Reply #16)

Mon May 11, 2015, 03:48 PM

38. Nicely done!

 

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 03:13 PM

17. The flat tax idea is very popular with the American people,

just ask President Forbes.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 03:39 PM

19. Herman Cain Redux

 

At least Herman Cain's 9 plan was logically better sounding.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 04:48 PM

21. He's certainly not channeling Ronald Reagan...



(Not that Reagan believed what he just said, more like talking out of both sides of his mouth. Or by then the dementia had taken hold and he didn't know WTF he was talking about. And bus drivers paying 10%? Payroll tax (which Reagan drastically raised) alone comes to nearly that, not counting the employer's share - which most economists think is effectively mostly paid for by employees in lower wages)

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 06:17 PM

22. You Could Have Left It At...

Ben Carson Unable to to Answer Simple Questions

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 06:21 PM

23. Ben Carson is an idiot

This tax plan is stupid

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 06:41 PM

24. Explain something to me about this "money overseas"

I'm assuming that if Corporation A brought money from their overseas operations into the US under the current tax regime, it would be hit with a 35 percent levy - $350,000 per million. And further, let's assume these "tax holidays" will reduce the rate on it to 17.5 percent, which would be half off.

Anyone who's even slightly competent at burying profits outside the country can find a place that won't tax it.

Given the choice between paying $175,000 per million on your profits and paying nothing, which would you choose?

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Response to jmowreader (Reply #24)

Mon May 11, 2015, 10:35 PM

48. Those tax havens are going away.

 

The US has the highest corp tax rate in the world, but allows deductions. They also tax overseas money that has already been taxed and no other country does that.
Drop the deductions, drop the rate, and the money will come back. And it would also stop the GEs who pay nothing

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 08:08 PM

25. The man is smoking some bad sh1t..........

"an overall complex program"


and he calls it a simpler system? No just another way of f*cking over the poor, and giving more to the rich.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 08:24 PM

27. Video Would Have Been Nice

It would have been nice if Think Progress would have posted a video of the interview. It would have been good to be able to watch the full video in order to see everything Dr. Ben Carson had to say. The article says he is open to a proportional tax system, but has called for a flat tax system. I would have like to see if he explained that contradiction. It would have also been helpful to see his full explanation concerning Wallace's question about the idea that a flat tax would increase taxes for some middle class families.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 08:52 PM

28. A 'Tax Holiday' would bring in $2 Trillion?

A "Tax Holiday" normally means no taxes are collected for a period of time. It means no taxes are collected, let alone 2 trillion dollars.

I think he means "tax amnesty" meaning taxes owed are forgiven with the understanding that from now on the individual/company pays what is due. Hard to see how it would raise 2 trillion. Maybe he means negotiating partial payment of past due taxes with the agreement of no prosecution. Again, doubtful there is anything close to $2 trillion there. Who knows what the dumb shit means, and he is a dumb shit when it comes to tax policy.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:02 PM

29. Interesting. Is he going to bring in Jubilee economics too?

Since we're talking about basing tax policy on the OT?

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:46 AM

33. But, he's so smart? What happened?

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Response to Cha (Reply #33)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:40 AM

34. Running a country is not brain surgery ...

... it's harder than that.

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Response to Cha (Reply #33)

Mon May 11, 2015, 03:47 PM

37. Brain mechanic is a highly specialized skill set that does not carry over to other disciplines

 

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 09:29 AM

35. What does Carson know about running a business?

He was a neurosurgeon on staff at Johns Hopkins, not a Fortune 500 CEO. He'd run the US into the ground.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 10:02 AM

36. dunno, I would love to toss the IRS and have a tax on all items above the basics. first car, first h

first car, first home, all food, first phone, utilities on that first home tax free.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:46 PM

42. Well, that explains why the only pro-Carson bumper stickers I see are on high-end SUVs

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 07:13 PM

44. Perhaps

Perhaps the truth is that he didn't write the tax plan. It was handed to him for cash. Ask yourself who the cash is from?

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Tue May 12, 2015, 03:33 AM

49. I'd like to think this guy is cynical but unfortunately he's just deep down to bone stupid.

Companies with overseas assets that are not taxed now and in some cases companies get $100s of Millions in tax rebates, are going to expose those assets to US taxes because Carson will promise them a tax holiday.

They are on tax permanent vacation right now !!

The guy is a complete moron.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Fri May 15, 2015, 07:08 AM

52. As I read the bible,

It doesn't mention income at all. It seems to say that each should give 10% of her wealth. Would Carson agree to a proportionate wealth tax? I would.

http://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Bible-Verses-About-Giving-10-Percent/

Now, to be fair, these writings stem from a time when a large proportion of wealth was stored food, which would fluctuate over the year, so the distinction of wealth from income is a little less clear.

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Response to question everything (Original post)

Fri May 15, 2015, 07:43 AM

53. Carson is proving that doctors make bad politicians

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