July 14, 2007
Russell Shaw is mad at Hillary Clinton due to her support for increasing taxes.
Here are my stances. I can’t decide which one makes the most sense so I am throwing them both out there.
He is right
Russell is right to be mad. Our system works incredibly well now and the money flowing to the ultra-rich finds its way back into the hands of every day workers through myriad hedge and private equity funds which helps finance many new companies and grow existing ones.
While the ultra-rich are making obscene sums of cash, I would rather have this wealth concentrated in the US where it generally gets spent on nice houses, cars and lots of other expensive items which are great for the US economy.
Let’s be careful not to mess up an economic cycle which is seeing tremendous growth. If Senator Clinton really wants to help Americans she should be doing everything she can to find ways to get the price of oil to fall. Greater investment in green technologies
would be a great place to start.
He is wrong
Fund managers are being taxed at the capital gains rate on what is effectively their salary. They should be rewarded with the capital gains rate on only the money they put at risk themselves. The end result of a slight tax change would be fund managers receiving lower compensation but the amount would be in line with what the rest of the nation pays.
This problem and low interest rates are exactly the reasons there are thousands of hedge and private equity funds being created. This excess investment in fact is responsible for artificial inflation of corporate valuations making it more difficult for any of these companies to make money. The net result of this problem will be the end of the economic expansion at the hands of the very companies which brought us the expansion to begin with. This is precisely what happened with the Internet and telecom boom/bust cycles. The difference is the fund managers can take virtually all companies down with them.
Adding a slight drag on the investment community will help keep it healthy. Sort of like a brief drought being good for the survival of a species.
I would love your opinions on this issue. Is Russell right or wrong?
For extra credit, please give this New York Times article a read about the Blackstone tax loophole. If someone can translate this into English, it would be much appreciated.