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  1. 16 Dec '14 04:14 / 1 edit
    Why was the American revolution fought? Was it over taxation? Was it over representation? I propose that looking at the US today, it was not worth it.

    Consider the following:

    1. In the US today corporate taxation is much higher than in the UK. In the UK, corporate taxation is a flat 20%. However, in the US the federal taxation can be as high as 39%, state as high as 12%, and local taxation as high as 3%.

    2. How about personal taxation? In the US personal taxation is also much higher than in the US. In the UK personal taxation can be as high as 45% of a persons income, but in the US it can be as high as 55.9%.

    3. What about representation? The approval ratings of Congress have been consistently dismal, and now even the President is suffering abysmal approval ratings.

    Still not convinced?

    4. The US total debt is around $18 trillion, the UK is half that.

    5. Public education in the UK ranks around 26th in the world, the US ranks around 36th.

    6. If you live in the UK you have a 13.98% more chance of being employed than if you live in the US.

    7. This is for all you left wingers out there who salivate at the government run health care system in the UK. Just think, if George Washington had drown in the Delaware while trying to cross it the US could have had government controlled health care for decades. it would have saved us all the heart ache of decades of politicians trying to inch their way into being just like the UK.

    8. Consider the police in both countries. In the UK the police don't carry guns. In the US police routinely gun down civilians, some of which were probably innocent.

    9. Slavery probably would have been ended much sooner had the Revolution not succeeded. When the colonists began to revolt, England gave slaves their freedom in the hopes of garnishing their support. Imagine wiping away a century of slavery in the US.

    10. As the English would say, "Bloody hell, you need one more reason?"

    So would America have ultimately fared better under the UK had all the Founding Fathers hung for treason?
  2. 16 Dec '14 06:46
    Actually, the US has much lower taxes and much smaller government expenses compared to the UK. Government debt as a percentage of GDP is comparable.
  3. 16 Dec '14 13:41 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    Actually, the US has much lower taxes and much smaller government expenses compared to the UK. Government debt as a percentage of GDP is comparable.
    Not from what I've seen.

    Link?

    Also, if the tax rates are higher it explains why their overall debt is lower. Isn't that better?

    I thought you were a tax guy. I thought increased taxes made life better in general. I thought higher taxes helped the economy, helped increase jobs, and helped heal hearts and change lives.
  4. 16 Dec '14 14:52
    Originally posted by whodey
    Not from what I've seen.

    Link?

    Also, if the tax rates are higher it explains why their overall debt is lower. Isn't that better?

    I thought you were a tax guy. I thought increased taxes made life better in general. I thought higher taxes helped the economy, helped increase jobs, and helped heal hearts and change lives.
    Not from what I've seen.

    So look up the data. It's not hard, sheesh. I'd do it for you, but you rarely read any of the data I post here.

    I thought you were a tax guy. I thought increased taxes made life better in general. I thought higher taxes helped the economy, helped increase jobs, and helped heal hearts and change lives.

    Can you quote me saying or implying anything remotely close to what you are suggesting are my positions?
  5. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    16 Dec '14 15:30
    It was probably worth it for the first time period of so after the revolution when Britain was still a brutal dictatorship.

    Without the revolution, the US would have gained independence sooner or later anyway, in the same manner as Canada or Australia. Without the revolution, it's possible that Queen Elizabeth II would be our ceremonial head of state. Perhaps we'd even still have the Union Jack in the corner of our flag. (Perhaps Canada doesn't do so only because of our example).

    But in all other respects, life wouldn't be much different than it is now. So, while the revolution was certainly worth it then, it probably has little impact in 2014 except the extent to which the thinking of the drafters of the Constitution was affected by the revolution.
  6. Subscriber Suzianne
    Misfit Queen
    16 Dec '14 15:55 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    Why was the American revolution fought? Was it over taxation? Was it over representation? I propose that looking at the US today, it was not worth it.

    Consider the following:

    1. In the US today corporate taxation is much higher than in the UK. In the UK, corporate taxation is a flat 20%. However, in the US the federal taxation can be as high as 39 ...[text shortened]... America have ultimately fared better under the UK had all the Founding Fathers hung for treason?
    Well, I suppose you could surrender your citizenship and get out of the country you apparently hate so much if it really bothers you so much.

    Oh, and don't let the door hit you on the way out.
  7. 16 Dec '14 16:02
    Originally posted by sh76
    It was probably worth it for the first time period of so after the revolution when Britain was still a brutal dictatorship.

    Without the revolution, the US would have gained independence sooner or later anyway, in the same manner as Canada or Australia. Without the revolution, it's possible that Queen Elizabeth II would be our ceremonial head of state. Perhap ...[text shortened]... extent to which the thinking of the drafters of the Constitution was affected by the revolution.
    All good points made. In the 20th century, and now in the 21st the US is gravitating towards the UK model in a great many ways. Whether this is good or bad is debatable, but for those alive at the time, and for the world in general at least through WWII, post revolution Americas was vital, so the Revolution was worth it.

    A more controversial and potentially more meaningful question is was the Second American Revolution, the Civil War worth it? Did it accomplish anything that could not, or would not have been done by peaceful means?
  8. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    16 Dec '14 19:02
    Originally posted by normbenign
    All good points made. In the 20th century, and now in the 21st the US is gravitating towards the UK model in a great many ways. Whether this is good or bad is debatable, but for those alive at the time, and for the world in general at least through WWII, post revolution Americas was vital, so the Revolution was worth it.

    A more controversial and pote ...[text shortened]... h it? Did it accomplish anything that could not, or would not have been done by peaceful means?
    Slavery probably would have continued for at least another few decades were it not for the Civil War. That alone was justification for it, even though it's quite probable that slavery would have ended peacefully eventually.
  9. 16 Dec '14 19:33 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by sh76 to Normbenign
    Slavery probably would have continued for at least another few decades were it not for the Civil War. That alone was justification for it, even though it's quite probable that slavery would have ended peacefully eventually.
    "...it's quite probable that slavery would have ended peacefully eventually."
    --Sh76

    When? Under what conditions would wealthy slave-owners (who tended
    to dominate Southern politics) have agreed to free their slaves voluntarily?
    Would the US government have had to exhaust its treasury--and raise taxes--
    in order to purchase all slaves from their owners and then set them free?
    Consider how deeply many Americans had invested into the cherished belief
    that slavery was a moral good, not merely a 'necessary evil' for prosperity.

    If the British Empire had begun refusing to trade with the United States on
    account of the American continuing refusal to abolish slavery, then would
    not the United States have found it more politically expedient to go to war
    (for instance, to invade Canada) than to accept that any foreigners should
    have any right to interfere in a US legal domestic institution--slavery?
  10. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    16 Dec '14 19:58
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    "...it's quite probable that slavery would have ended peacefully eventually."
    --Sh76

    When? Under what conditions would wealthy slave-owners (who tended
    to dominate Southern politics) have agreed to free their slaves voluntarily?
    Would the US government have had to exhaust its treasury--and raise taxes--
    in order to purchase all slaves from their o ...[text shortened]... any foreigners should
    have any right to interfere in a US legal domestic institution--slavery?
    I don't know precisely when, but given the increased focus on civil rights that has occurred in the world in general since then, I find it hard to imagine the possibility of slavery existing in the southern United States in 2014.
  11. Standard member finnegan
    GENS UNA SUMUS
    16 Dec '14 20:14
    Originally posted by sh76
    I don't know precisely when, but given the increased focus on civil rights that has occurred in the world in general since then, I find it hard to imagine the possibility of slavery existing in the southern United States in 2014.
    I find it hard to appreciate that the US Civil Rights legislation was passed as recently as 1968 and, indeed, 1991.

    http://www.infoplease.com/spot/civilrightstimeline1.html

    The notion that the US can now afford to be complacent in this respect is not serious.
  12. 16 Dec '14 20:29 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by sh76
    I don't know precisely when, but given the increased focus on civil rights that has occurred in the world in general since then, I find it hard to imagine the possibility of slavery existing in the southern United States in 2014.
    The 2004 film 'C.S.A.' is a satire about a counterfactual 'historical' world in
    which the South had won the US Civil War and slavery's still thriving.

    My general point is that if one expects all slave owners (including those whose
    wealth depends upon slavery) to free all their slaves *without compensation*,
    then one's expecting altruism on a scale that's unprecedented in US history.

    It seems even harder to imagine that all the slaves and their sympathizers
    would have done nothing beyond non-violent protests if slavery had lasted
    into the 21st century in the United States. There would have been more
    John Browns and Nat Turners. The South would have become even more of
    a 'fortress state', with every 'loyal' able-bodied white man armed at all times.

    In my view, apartheid did not come to an end in South Africa on account
    of a profound moral awakening among white South Africans as much as
    their gradual realization that apartheid would be economically unsustainable
    in the long run. (The ANC also was not close to overthrowing apartheid
    through armed struggle.) Eventually, I suppose, even the USA and perhaps
    even Israel (apartheid South Africa's closest ally) would have begun to
    boycott South Africa. And how valuable would South Africa's diamonds and
    gold be if no one abroad was ready to buy them legally? I suppose that
    South Africa could make some deals (illegally selling diamonds and gold at
    deep discounts) on the black market, but that's no way to run a modern economy.
  13. 16 Dec '14 21:11
    If America had stayed with the British empire I imagine Germany would not have dared to cause the 1914 war . Knowing America would join the war along side Britain and the commonwealth countries from the start would have certainly thwarted the Kaiser's plans, and of course there would have been no ww2 either ?
  14. Subscriber AThousandYoung
    Poor Filipov :,(
    16 Dec '14 21:24 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by phil3000
    If America had stayed with the British empire I imagine Germany would not have dared to cause the 1914 war . Knowing America would join the war along side Britain and the commonwealth countries from the start would have certainly thwarted the Kaiser's plans, and of course there would have been no ww2 either ?
    Crash Course: Who Started WWI

    youtube.com/watch?v=_pFCpKtwCkI

    I blame Russia myself. They used pan-Slavism to elbow their way into a regional squabble forcing Germany to respond.

    Hitler assumed Anglo neutrality for ethnic reasons. I'd quote him but I don't want Finn the Fascist to freak out.
  15. Standard member finnegan
    GENS UNA SUMUS
    16 Dec '14 22:20 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    Crash Course: Who Started WWI

    youtube.com/watch?v=_pFCpKtwCkI

    I blame Russia myself. They used pan-Slavism to elbow their way into a regional squabble forcing Germany to respond.

    Hitler assumed Anglo neutrality for ethnic reasons. I'd quote him but I don't want Finn the Fascist to freak out.
    Roosevelt also had a strong intuition that the Americans were as capable of seeking an alliance with Germany as with Britain and he had many occasions to speak out against fascism in American politics. The Americans did not in fact declare war on Germany at all until the Germans did us all a favour and declared war on the USA. In Britain, again, there was more than a little sympathy for the Germans, as witnessed in the strange story of the abdication of Edward VIII and also the Mitford sisters, among other strands. I do not think Hitler was completely misinformed. People forget that once a decision has been made, differences become very stark when before they were less striking. Politically though, it is very hard to imagine the British people accepting an alliance with Germany when the previous war was still a very recent memory. The fascists also had very limited success in this country, though not totally insignificant, but they met fierce resistence. If the establishment did try to take up Hitler's offer, there is no doubt that something close to civil war would have been required to get that policy accepted and I am not convinced the establishment could have won.

    A decent account of the origins of the First World War is in a chapter of the new book by Kissinger on World Order. He shares the blame more widely than many and points to the final collapse of the balance of power which had worked well in Europe for centuries, but the primary reason for that collapse in his opinion was the unification of Germany, which created a single great power where before there had been a collection of smaller states capable of taking different sides in a fight. The balance was destroyed and diplomats failed to understand how seriously the rules of engagement changed as a result, so they took outrageous risks thinking they could get away with them. It was at the least an interesting argument which I do not do justice to here.

    (Why would I freak out? The news that Hitler thought in racist terms is hardly earth shaking. If you plan to agree with him, that is something to consider at the time, but surely not?)