Wednesday, July 18, 2007

This is not a European vacation, BUT....

Staying along the line of the bosses post of Europe's plight with it's taxes and welfare system, I came along this article on Boortz's website today.

Irritation grows over taxes

Norwegians are among the most heavily taxed people in the world, and that in turn has made Norway one of the most expensive countries in which to live. Most accept the taxes they're ordered to pay on income and even net worth and property, but growing numbers are publicly complaining about sky-high taxes on everything from cars to fuel to consumer goods.
Norwegians differentiate between skatter (taxes) and avgifter (duties, fees or user taxes) and the latter is the most hated. They're what causes a glass of house wine at an Oslo restaurant to cost the equivalent of nearly USD 16, or a gallon of gas to cost nearly USD 9 at current exchange rates.
"It's clear that taxes are much too high in oil-rich Norway," Oslo resident Gro Pettersen told newspaper Aftenposten. "It's sick!"
The taxes placed on new cars, which can more than double the price of the car itself, are another bone of contention, even though most Norwegians support measures to protect the environment. "The car tax is much too high, but so are most all the other avgifter also," said Ernst Bendiksen of the northern city of Vadsø, where Norwegians are far more dependent on their cars than those living in cities with good public transit systems. "We certainly don't get anything in return for them."
A study conducted by research firm MMI for the Norwegian Tax Payers Association (Skattebetalerforeningen) showed that the most hated taxes are those on new cars and a transfer tax levied when real estate changes hands. The so-called dokumentavgift on real estate transactions, which implies that it's meant to cover the costs of property registration, costs homebuyers around 2.5 percent of the purchase price.
Three of four Norwegians believe that's too high, according to the MMI study, and absolutely no one believed it was too low. With even a modest flat in Oslo costing a few million kroner these days, the tax amounts to a fair bit of change.
Regressive inequalityThe study also showed that 67 percent of the population think Norway's inheritance taxes are too high, while 63 percent think fuel taxes are too high. Norway's hefty 25 percent VAT (like a sales tax) on nearly all consumer items is considered too high by 53 percent of the population. Only 32 percent, meanwhile, believed tobacco taxes are too high, while 44 percent believed liquor taxes are too high.
The user taxes, or avgifter, are also unpopular because they're largely regressive taxes that hit people with low incomes much harder than those with high incomes. Filling the car's gas tank, and paying the taxes that requires, is much more expensive for someone earning NOK 300,000 than it is for a car owner earning NOK 900,000.
The head of the tax payers' association, Jon Stordrange, said he thinks user taxes should be adjusted to reflect actual costs inflicted on society. "Then I think people would have more respect for the system," he said.

WOW!!! "skatter (taxes) and avgifter (duties, fees or user taxes)... dokumentavgift on real estate transactions, which implies that it's meant to cover the costs of property registration, costs homebuyers around 2.5 percent of the purchase price."
That's just friggin bananas. I would start a damn riot on that shit there! 2.5 percent on taxes just to sell a house and cover expenses for filing paperwork and such! Lets do some easy math on this!
Lets say for a Norweigan to sell his house of $100, 000 (keeping the number simple for the mathematically inclined!), the taxes would be $2500! That goes right to the government folks! Not the mortgage companies, lawyers, etc! This is just highway robbery!

Now! What i wanted to know is where do these taxes REALLY pay for, so I looked around a bit on the web (I just can't fly over there and ask you know!). Here's what I found courtesy of Thinkquest:

The Norwegian welfare system

The welfare system in Norway is made to take care of all the inhabitants of the nation, “from the cradle to the grave”. From the day they are born, all Norwegians are members of National Social Insurance. Being a member of the National Social Insurance is in fact mandatory. The National Social Insurance guarantees a number of benefits for the population: Free health care, free hospitalization and immunizations.
A 100% wage compensated maternity leave for 42 weeks for the mother, 4 weeks’ fully paid leave for the father. (Alternatively one year on 80% of salary) Almost 70% of the fathers take this opportunity to be home with their newborn child. Every family receives child allowance for each child, until the child is 16 years old.
Single parents receive double child allowance. Children receive free dental care until they are 18 years old. For 19 - and 20-year-olds the Social Insurance gives a 75% discount. (This dental care does not include braces or other orthodontics.)
A minimum pension when a person retires. Retirement age: normally 67, lower for some professions.The welfare system is financed through taxes. A working Norwegian pays between 30% and 40 % of his income in taxes (depending on how much he earns). A part of the taxes goes to the National Social Insurance fund and secures the insurance and benefits for the person himself and the non-working persons (children, the elderly).
The welfare system is run by the state. Norwegians have a loyal, friendly relationship with the state, as it is looked upon as someone you can turn to for help. Receiving welfare benefits is not regarded as shameful; it is something everyone receives and takes advantage of.

Read that last line again! "Receiving welfare benefits is not regarded as shameful; it is something everyone receives and takes advantage of." WHAT KIND OF MINDSET IS THAT! Like Michael Savage says, "Liberalism is a mental disorder!" That it is indeed. One side note; one look at its website and you'll see where they stand on the side of politics. A little hint is it's not to the right! lmao

Here's Britannica's synopsis of Norway's welfare and government system. No where have I seen how Norway pays its, "Compulsory membership" or it's high rate of taxes for that matter.
Media bias anyone? lol

Now the real question is this folks: can we afford Sen. Hillary Clinton to be our next president so she may try to have her way with convincing the idiots that we need "Universal heathcare?"
I think not folks.

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