But that’s coal consumption — how about actual coal jobs?

There isn’t any debate that coal is a declining fuel source on into the future, and you’re quite right that automation has impacted jobs in that area.

The problem, though, is when the government, which (in theory) is supposed to be operating under the principle of “promoting the common welfare”, starts actively disrupting the livelihood of its citizens.

We take it for granted that automation will, over time, disrupt those livelihoods over time. And since that disruption is incremental over time, indiviudals involved in an affected industry have time to respond with retraining.

When the government regulates jobs out of existence, for whatever reason, it calls the actual value of the government to its citizens into question. Further, because the effect of regulation is immediate, there is no time for the employee to adjust; one day, they’re earning 80K in a mine; the next day they’re flipping burgers for minimum wage.

Ergo, if you remove those job killing regulations, SOME of those jobs will return. Not all, but some. And that’s better than nothing.

And, if you put yourself in the shoes of those individuals whose employment was disrupted……..is it really so surprising that they don’t care to vote for the party who supported the disruption of their lives? And did not want to vote for the candidate who told them to their faces, in their very towns, “Sorry, not going to help you out?”

On the healthcare front, it’s curious how polls show that Obamacare is more popular than ever now that more people seem to understand what it did and are not just reacting to the name Obama.

Not at all. Everyone loves a free lunch, after all. And when you’re eating, it’;s easy to kid yourself and think the food’s never going to stop coming.

Who doesn’t love Medicare, right? Now, how much would they love it if they had to pay for what it actually costs? (The premiums would be at least 15X what is paid today, after all.)

But maybe if citizens are just told that those are not actually tax cuts for the 1% but rather there’s a restoring of what was already in place (the “preferred status quo” — preferred by the wealthy but coal miners too?), favorable ratings will follow.

Well, any citizen who is politically awake already knows that. If you’re just consuming the swill from the media, who spin the news to manipulate you, then you deserve what you get.

But, more to the point, and clearly this is coming as a surprise to you, people who lean right politically not only refuse to engage in identity politics, we don’t engage in class envy politics, either. That doesn’t mean we’re blind to the problems of wealth imbalance, but we’re not going to hate the people who have been successful. We realize that historically (be glad to do a graph for you if you like) income inequality decreases during period of economic boom, and increases during periods of recession and slow growth.

So the solution is not to tax the shit out of them, the solution is to have a booming economy. Pretty simple.

Ah, the AHCA is going to be “beautiful”, no?

I have high hopes for its final form. It is definitely on the right track, and potentially sustainable, unlike the ACA slow motion train wreck.

As for conservatives wanting a progressive tax code but just different than what liberals want, tell that to the legislators of my state of WI who are proposing a state flat tax (taking shape over a number of years) to about 3.95%. 47% of the benefit goes to the top 4%, of course. But certainly that money will trickle down to the masses, no?

I really don’t care what states choose to do with their taxes. That’s smallball. At the end of the day, most state revenue goes to fund medicare, medicaid, and education. The only thing they can do with taxes that improves the economy in the state is to minimize tax burden on business. Lowering taxes on the rich on their state income form doesn’t do squat for local business, and Walker knows that.

I’m in Texas, where we’ve avoided the income tax nonsense completely. The majority of state and local revenue comes from property taxes. Hard to get more progressive than that.

But, to your point, flat taxation can operate efficiently for everyone if the personal deductions and income limits are high enough to insure that the lowest quintile doesn’t get hit. If those are adjusted correctly, there is no reason to oppose a flat tax.

Nationally, it would be trickier, of course. Probably a nonstarter, because of the tax increases you’d have to hit the middle class with.

Data Driven Econophile. Muslim, USA born. Been “woke” 2x: 1st, when I realized the world isn’t fair; 2nd, when I realized the “woke” people are full of shit.

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