(UTOPIA) Tax Alert : Stop 150% tax pledge increase

Alex Esplin alex.esplin at gmail.com
Fri Apr 18 20:55:33 MDT 2008

On Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 12:56 PM, Bryan Sant <bryan.sant at gmail.com> wrote:
>  Let me fist sincerly apologize for pursuing a discipline that
>  maximizes the earning potential for me and my family.  I agree that
>  people who work hard, study, apply themselves and are ultimately
>  rewarded by our evil, greed-driven, capitalist system are despicable
>  dogs and should have all that they've worked hard for stripped away
>  from them (by force if necessary), and distributed to Liberal Arts
>  majors and no-ambition professional welfare recipients (but I repeat
>  myself) nation wide.

I've been mostly just skimming this thread in mild amusement, but this
really pisses me off.  I spent a good number of my younger years
living in a trailer that you could actually see daylight through some
of the wall joints.  I went to a high school that was _in no way_ a
preparation for BYU or any kind of financially productive life.  These
were not choices, but necessities brought about my location and hard
knocks.  Stuart is absolutely correct, and they idea that "choosing to
get an education and a decent-paying job" is the only thing between a
comfortably well off family and a poor one is total crap.  For 80% of
the people in my hometown there is no choice.  They live there because
they can survive there.  If they moved away from where they can grow a
garden, kill their own meat, drive (and repeatedly fix) a 30-40 year
old car etc... they would literally have _no_ way to earn a living.
There is no "study, work hard, blah blah" for these people.  Where are
they going to study something that can make a difference?  Where are
they going to learn something to which they can apply themselves that
will earn them a decent living?  Not in the school that does less to
encourage personal initiative than I realized when I went there.  And
just think, if my dad hadn't been in the Army when I was young, I,
like many of the people I went to school with, wouldn't even know just
exactly I wasn't able to choose to do.

I have crooked fingers because I knew my parents didn't have the money
to pay for me to go to the doctor when I broke them.  About 75% of the
time when I get a cold, I also end up with some sort of upper
respiratory infection because my nose has been broken 6 times and, you
guessed it, I knew my parents didn't have the money to pay for me to
go to the doctor and get it set when I broke it.  When I would get
seriously injured, my parents would ask me if I wanted to drive 20
miles to the nearest hospital, and every time I'd opt for krazy glue
and/or duct tape because I knew, as early as age 12, that my parents
couldn't afford doctor bills.

I had friends in the Army who thought it was weird as heck to be able
to go to sick call when they were hurt or sick and not have to pay
through the nose for it.  The military is filled with people who are
there because it's a choice between a life like the one I managed to
leave behind and one where you get 3 meals a day, health care, clothes
to wear, and a sense of accomplishment.

Having access to decent education, health care, or any other measure
of quality of life is not a choice for more people than we would like
to recognize.  So, Bryan, and anyone else with the same idea, be glad
you were able to choose a "discipline that maximizes the earning
potential for me and my family", and be glad that you grew up aware
that there was something to which you could apply yourself that would
earn more than a bare subsistence living, and that only with the aid
of growing/killing 3/4 of what you ate.

Alex Esplin

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