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Hazmatac
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Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't I tell you I wanted to change our current tax system? Weren't we also talking about ways to make our current system more consistent? If I can determine whether or not my money goes to taxes and how it spent, how is that not justified? Talking about the government holding your tax money to buy a sportscar is pretty ridiculous. Either you keep your money and save it yourself or you pool your money together with people that want the same thing to reach a goal faster. Either way, I see no reason why it wouldn't be ethical to determine exactly where your money is going. That's the tax system I want. I said voting was inadequate, I have always said that. However, we were talking about our current system and whether or not minors should pay taxes in it. So far I see a lot of criticism for my views, but no one listing alternatives. I would gladly welcome that sort of debate.

I honestly don't care to debate with you over whether or not you "applied the rules of logic flawlessly to a very clear statement". I disagree with the conclusions you made from those statements (that, I will debate with you). I have explained to you my views. Explain yours. Otherwise, we're both wasting our time here.

That's not up for debate. I applied the rules of Logic flawlessly to your very clear statement that C => ( A OR B ). You can't brush off something that is clearly perfect logic, as not accurate.

[ C=> ( A OR B ) ] <=> [ ( C=>A ) OR ( C=>B ) ]. is an accurate statement! (I used <=> to signify equivalence) If you wish, I can give you a reference for the proof of that statement.

Also, you did say [ C=> ( A OR B ) ] , where C is that we have the same tax system, A is that minors should vote and B is that minors should be exempt. If you wish, I can quote it back to you.

So, where exactly do you see an inaccuracy?

That's also not true. There is no way to justify having someone pay taxes is a true statement. Always.

Also, once you pay your taxes, you can't determine how it's spent. Voting, in today's America, is not a way to determine how your money is spent, it's a way to determine how other people's money is spent. Otherwise I would want the gov. to hold on to my tax money until it's about half a million, and then buy me a sportscar with it. Specifically, the new AM DB9 (not the Vantage please, and not the stupid Volante, I don't like those).

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't I tell you I wanted to change our current tax system? Weren't we also talking about ways to make our current system more consistent? If I can determine whether or not my money goes to taxes and how it spent, how is that not justified? Talking about the government holding your tax money to buy a sportscar is pretty ridiculous. Either you keep your money and save it yourself or you pool your money together with people that want the same thing to reach a goal faster. Either way, I see no reason why it wouldn't be ethical to determine exactly where your money is going. That's the tax system I want. I said voting was inadequate, I have always said that.

It's easy.

Make taxation voluntary.

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't I tell you I wanted to change our current tax system?
You told us that we are speaking in terms of things staying the same. We don't care what you wish you said, all we have to do on is what you did say.
If I can determine whether or not my money goes to taxes and how it spent, how is that not justified?
We also don't care if you opt to interrupt with an off-topic comment. The question at hand is whether the fact of paying taxes is either necessary or sufficient ground for granting a person a vote -- and it has been amply explained that it is not. Try concentrating on the question at hand. If you want to go off on a digression about taxes, the proper conclusion is simply to argue against all taxation, period.
So far I see a lot of criticism for my views, but no one listing alternatives.
Read some of the posts in this thread, and in other threads on this forum either on the topic of taxation, or voting. If your main concern is taxation, the alternative is quite clear, and frequently articulated here. Taxation is immoral: there should be no taxation.
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That's true, but do you honestly think politicians care as much about the public opinion of those that don't determine whether or not they are reelected? I do believe public outcry can be divided. If a law is specifically related to minors, they might be the only ones outcrying. How can that possibly hold as much weight as voters have? Let's say a bill comes up to decide whether or not teenagers should have curfews (related to driving and such). Most teenagers would be against that. Most parents would be for it (this is based on observation of character alone). I don't see those two sides holding equal weight. This would lead to more laws being biased towards adults over time. Therefore, minors would not be as oppressed if they could vote.

I have said that tax paying is not the only prerequisite to voting. There is still a major link between tax paying and voting that you can't ignore. People that understand the value of money should more closely observe this link than anyone. Not only does it influence what purpose your money should be spent on, any time the government enforces property rights, contract breaches, etc they use tax dollars to do so. Salaries of lawmakers, salaries of policemen, salaries of judges, etc. I was never ignoring those other factors, I see the link very clearly. I do think people should decide whether or not they want to be taxed, anything else is robbery. I don't think a system that allowed people to pool their money together for a common goal would be unethical, however. This is assuming that it is completely voluntary and only those that participated determined its use. It could be similar to a toll road, everyone that uses it pays for it. Definitely not taxes judged by how things are currently done, but it is a system where money can be pooled together to achieve goals faster (that doesn't ignore individual rights). If our voting system remains the way it is, there is no way to justify minors being taxed. The link is that they cannot vote to determine their money's use and any protesting they have would be outweighed by people that can vote.

Can you disprove any of these statements that link tax paying to voting?

*Politicians are elected by voters

*Politicians determine laws and influence how tax money is spent

*Politicians are influenced by voters

*Laws are enforced by government employees paid by tax dollars

Furthermore, can you justify a system that bases how rights are given to individuals by an arbitrary age? It is unarguably the easy thing to do, but is it ethical?

That is false, since the real influence on tax spending is via mass declarations of approval / disapproval for a plan to spend. Public officials make a very crude inference from observed outcry and numerous other political facts to yea / nay votes on legislation. Public outcry is not labeled as to "opinions of registered voters" vs. "other opinions". The only connection to voting is the presumption -- poorly supported by fact -- that if a politician spends money the wrong way, he runs a risk of not being re-elected.

But that connection is not limited to appropriations matters -- it extends to various other regulatory matters. The government will limit your freedom in various ways that are not related to taxation, and again via the system of public outcry, we can very indirectly influence what freedoms are taken from us, or (rarely) restored. Your position, that there should specifically be a connection between voting and tax-paying ignores the fact that freedom to conduct business, to buy and sell land, to possess firearms, and myriad other rights, are also infringements of your rights that voters should also have a say in.

And finally, you have not explained the logic behind claiming that people should be able to determine how their tax money is spent. The logically first "ought" is that people ought to be able to determine whether they will be taxed. And then the parallelism with other rights is clearer -- people ought to be able to determine whether their right to buy or use property will be infringed, and in what way.If we are speaking of things staying the same, then only age, citizenship, residence, plus certain criminal or mental states can be considered. Taxpayer status is definitively out of bounds.

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Definitely not taxes judged by how things are currently done, but it is a system where money can be pooled together to achieve goals faster (that doesn't ignore individual rights).

Government doesn't need to be there to pool money together to achieve goals faster.

A value for value option for individuals to choose of their own free will is the only moral option. No need for anything complex. As long as those goals place no force against others, it works great. If it does produce that force, then that would be the opportunity for a moral government protecting individual rights could be called in to intervene.

Edited by SD26
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It's not what I wished I had said, I said it. I said the tax system was immoral in post #40. In post #41 I said our tax system was not like the system I wanted. In post #45 I said there was no way to justify a tax system that didn't allow people to say where their money went. Then I went on to say if you cannot justify a system you should change it. So yes, let's do things based on what I said. That being said, it would be irresponsible of me to ignore reality. Reality is that we pay taxes, I wish that were different but it isn't. Therefore, I assumed we were talking about whether or not it was ethical for minors to pay taxes in a system where they cannot vote. I see no way to change everything wrong in our politics at once, we would do things in steps. If we want to change minor oppression, taxation without representation is a huge factor. I have explained the connection between voting and taxation in great detail, I have not seen anything proving that they aren't connected. I have also said paying taxes is not the only prerequisite to voting, however. I cannot make an argument that I never agreed with from the start.

I didn't realize it were possible to go on a digression about taxes after several people state that taxes are immoral in a thread about minors rights. I started talking about it because people weren't focusing on the issue of minors anymore. They didn't seem to be okay with even talking about it until my views on taxes were clarified. I was fine with that, so I clarified. Let's move on. If you want to talk about whether or not minors should be able to vote, let's do that, using all factors involved (taxation is just one of them). It promises to be a much more productive subject than this.

You told us that we are speaking in terms of things staying the same. We don't care what you wish you said, all we have to do on is what you did say.We also don't care if you opt to interrupt with an off-topic comment. The question at hand is whether the fact of paying taxes is either necessary or sufficient ground for granting a person a vote -- and it has been amply explained that it is not. Try concentrating on the question at hand. If you want to go off on a digression about taxes, the proper conclusion is simply to argue against all taxation, period.Read some of the posts in this thread, and in other threads on this forum either on the topic of taxation, or voting. If your main concern is taxation, the alternative is quite clear, and frequently articulated here. Taxation is immoral: there should be no taxation.
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I agree with you completely. If a group of people want to pay someone for their protection, they pay for that. Value for value. If they want a road, they do that too. I think it's the simplest system in the world. My concern is that we haven't changed the system yet and we are unlikely to do it all at once. If we are talking minor oppression, I feel taxation without representation is an issue until we change the tax system.

Government doesn't need to be there to pool money together to achieve goals faster.

A value for value option for individuals to choose of their own free will is the only moral option. No need for anything complex. As long as those goals place no force against others, it works great. If it does produce that force, then that would be the opportunity for a moral government protecting individual rights could be called in to intervene.

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I didn't realize it were possible to go on a digression about taxes after several people state that taxes are immoral in a thread about minors rights.
So do you agree that the question of whether a person pays taxes or not is irrelevant to whether they should be allowed to vote? Do you now understand that paying taxes is neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition for voter status? The proper conditions are "is mentally capable", "is a citizen" and "has not proven oneself, on objective grounds, to be wholly outside of civilized society".
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I have always agreed with those conditions regarding whether or not someone can vote. It should be based on who they are as an individual, not as a stereotyped group. However, if someone has not reached those conditions (or whatever conditions society is using), how can you justify them paying taxes? You cannot refute that voting has a huge influence on how tax money is spent, which laws are made, and how they are enforced. My point has always been this: Voting should be based on objective terms, not an arbitrary age. If you have determined that someone cannot vote in a system where voting influences taxes (which is what we currently have, right or wrong), that person should not pay taxes. That has always been my opinion on the subject.

So do you agree that the question of whether a person pays taxes or not is irrelevant to whether they should be allowed to vote? Do you now understand that paying taxes is neither a necessary nor a sufficient condition for voter status? The proper conditions are "is mentally capable", "is a citizen" and "has not proven oneself, on objective grounds, to be wholly outside of civilized society".
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However, if someone has not reached those conditions (or whatever conditions society is using), how can you justify them paying taxes?
The same way you justify anyone else paying taxes -- not at all!
My point has always been this: Voting should be based on objective terms, not an arbitrary age.
I agree. The age for voting should be determined with reference to the relevant fact, namely "is mentally capable".
If you have determined that someone cannot vote in a system where voting influences taxes (which is what we currently have, right or wrong), that person should not pay taxes.
So now you're saying that there are conditions under which it's legitimate to tax someone. It's hard to figure out your position. No person should pay taxes. And therefore, it should not matter whether or not they vote.
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I can only work with reality. Reality is that we do pay taxes. Until we change that, everyone should at least be represented. It would be irresponsible to try to ignore that fact. Any effort to try to change that people pay taxes, I will be the first to help. Until then, I'll work with what we do have and try to improve it. Paying taxes may always be evil, but as long as we do it I believe all people that are "mentally capable" should be represented. I hope I can help you figure out my position, I have tried to be very clear.

The same way you justify anyone else paying taxes -- not at all!I agree. The age for voting should be determined with reference to the relevant fact, namely "is mentally capable".So now you're saying that there are conditions under which it's legitimate to tax someone. It's hard to figure out your position. No person should pay taxes. And therefore, it should not matter whether or not they vote.
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I can only work with reality. Reality is that we do pay taxes.
Okay; now here are two other facts of reality. Children pay taxes, children do not vote.
Until we change that, everyone should at least be represented.
Until we give children the vote, children will not vote. Until we stop taxing people, everybody pays taxes. It would be irresponsible to ignore those facts.
Until then, I'll work with what we do have and try to improve it.
For example, by eliminating taxes.
Paying taxes may always be evil, but as long as we do it I believe all people that are "mentally capable" should be represented.
Sure, and children are not in the set "mentally capable".
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True. Those are facts of reality as well. Facts of reality can be changed, but we do have to acknowledge them. If we eliminate taxes, taxation without representation is solved. Setting an arbitrary age as the "age of maturity" will still not be solved. As long as the subject is minor's rights and our tax system has not been changed, I will list taxation without representation as one of the problems. Fair enough?

Would you mind telling me what you view as a child? I'm not clear on how you are defining that. Are you saying there is never a 16 year old that is mentally capable or an 18 year old that isn't? I don't think I can comment further until you clarify that.

Okay; now here are two other facts of reality. Children pay taxes, children do not vote.Until we give children the vote, children will not vote. Until we stop taxing people, everybody pays taxes. It would be irresponsible to ignore those facts.For example, by eliminating taxes.Sure, and children are not in the set "mentally capable".
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I honestly don't care to debate with you over whether or not you "applied the rules of logic flawlessly to a very clear statement". I disagree with the conclusions you made from those statements (that, I will debate with you).

I didn't apply logic to "a statement", I applied it to your statement.

If you want to debate at all, you're gonna have to use logic. I won't acknowledge your arbitrary opinions and arguments by association, I only care about opinions based on principles, and supported by logical arguments. If the one thing you refuse to discuss is the logical implications of your own statements, then the conversation is over.

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Would you mind telling me what you view as a child? I'm not clear on how you are defining that. Are you saying there is never a 16 year old that is mentally capable or an 18 year old that isn't?
A child is a person who has not yet matured to the point of being able to perform in the relevant area. In terms of acting responsibly and rationally, that happens around age 18. Specific individuals may mature at 17, 16, 19 etc. but there is no objective test to determine when a person is mature. Of course if you can develop a reliable blood test then we could substitute the blood test for the age test. Crying that age 18 is "arbitrary" is ridiculous, because any fallible test / criterion will be "arbitrary", and yet a distinction has to be made.
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So things you know to be true, such as whether or not the person is self sufficient and willing to take responsibility for their actions is arbitrary? Since when? If someone meets that criteria, why should anyone have right to a second of their life? Giving an arbitrary age is easy, but not the only solution. Logic being applied to real life problems is never arbitrary, since logic relies on things that can be proven. Whether or not someone is self sufficient is not arbitrary, it can be proven. If someone agrees to terms that make sure they do not depend on anyone else for their survival (thus, no longer a minor) and they are held accountable to those things; why should age matter? Can you justify taking rights away from a mature 17 year old? For whose benefit is it to do so? Certainly not theirs.

I don't understand the blood test comment.

A child is a person who has not yet matured to the point of being able to perform in the relevant area. In terms of acting responsibly and rationally, that happens around age 18. Specific individuals may mature at 17, 16, 19 etc. but there is no objective test to determine when a person is mature. Of course if you can develop a reliable blood test then we could substitute the blood test for the age test. Crying that age 18 is "arbitrary" is ridiculous, because any fallible test / criterion will be "arbitrary", and yet a distinction has to be made.
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I will gladly discuss things using logic, I never use anything else. I can agree that I said C=A or C=B. I do not agree with the conclusions you made from those statements. From C=A, you said surely I could see no connection between taxes and voting. I can, and I explained that several times. From C=B you decided that meant I wanted positive discrimination when I was listing options to eliminate taxation without representation in our current system. I will discuss logical implications of my own statements, but I will not agree to your opinions on those statements until you have backed them with logic. So far, I'm honestly not even sure what your arguments against mine are, I only know that you disagree with them.

I didn't apply logic to "a statement", I applied it to your statement.

If you want to debate at all, you're gonna have to use logic. I won't acknowledge your arbitrary opinions and arguments by association, I only care about opinions based on principles, and supported by logical arguments. If the one thing you refuse to discuss is the logical implications of your own statements, then the conversation is over.

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So things you know to be true, such as whether or not the person is self sufficient and willing to take responsibility for their actions is arbitrary? Since when? If someone meets that criteria, ...
What do you mean by "self-sufficiency"? Do you mean someone who owns the means to take care of himself (e.g. a billionaire trust-fund baby), or someone who can actually make decisions about how to use those means?
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So things you know to be true, such as whether or not the person is self sufficient and willing to take responsibility for their actions is arbitrary?
As arbitrary as using a specific age. Right now you're in arbitrary dreamland, because we don't have an objective test for whether a person should or should not be allowed to vote (either a blood test or a behavioral test) which proves that a person should be allowed to vote. When you come up with such a test, we can evaluate it. But in fact, there is no objective test.

You are relying on the fallacy of imperfection -- since a solution to a problem is not perfect, it is entirely wrong. Show us the statutory language that will objectively distinguishes proper voters from non-voters. Start writing.

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What do you mean by "self-sufficiency"? Do you mean someone who owns the means to take care of himself (e.g. a billionaire trust-fund baby), or someone who can actually make decisions about how to use those means?

A minor is someone who society has determined is not capable of making their own decisions. Adults make decisions for them and take responsibility for them in most situations. If someone were self sufficient, no part of their life would depend on others to survive (trade is obviously a means of being self sufficient as well, it does not mean they would have to grow their food, etc). Therefore, no one else has any claim to their life. This is something that can be proven. A billionaire trust fund baby would have to possess the capability to make good decisions with the money and be capable in other regards than finances or he would perish in a society where parasites were not allowed to thrive. This is the kind of system I would support, one that is based on capability. Age is not an accomplishment. If a minor decides to be self sufficient and thus no longer a minor, he is held responsible for every action he makes. Rights come with responsibilities. If he fails, rights are taken away and he cannot survive on his own. If he succeeds, it is no one's concern but his own. This would be the objective test and it is based entirely on results. If you want the right to live on your own, the test is living on your own. Your own ability will determine whether or not you were capable. If you want to vote, take a test that examines your knowledge on our political system and agree to all responsibilities that come with voting (you would have to create some number that would determine where you pass or fail, but I would prefer that to an age that is not based on capability at all). If you want to use the meat cutter at work, you agree to be legally responsible for any accidents. If you want to work at any job that you aren't considered old enough for now, you work there and either prove your capability or you don't. Your success would depend on your employer, as opposed to laws that dictate this for the employer like we have now. Any person's capability can be tested and rights should be based on nothing else. The gaining of the rights minors want would be linked directly to the responsibilities. This would also create an environment that fosters growth as opposed to irresponsibility.

As arbitrary as using a specific age. Right now you're in arbitrary dreamland, because we don't have an objective test for whether a person should or should not be allowed to vote (either a blood test or a behavioral test) which proves that a person should be allowed to vote. When you come up with such a test, we can evaluate it. But in fact, there is no objective test.

You are relying on the fallacy of imperfection -- since a solution to a problem is not perfect, it is entirely wrong. Show us the statutory language that will objectively distinguishes proper voters from non-voters. Start writing.

I still have no idea how a blood test can determine whether or not someone should be allowed to vote, so I cannot comment. A behavioral test would determine how well someone does according to society's standards, not how well they will do for their own sake. You have to give someone the chance to prove their capabilities. This is something that can be proven and could determine if they can use their rights without infringing upon the rights of others. If you value individualism, nothing else should matter. Those are standards everyone should be held to, regardless of age. There is, in fact, no such thing as arbitrary dreamland, only hell. Logic can always be proven and applied to real life, otherwise it is not logic.

In order to be relying on the fallacy of imperfection, I would have to view or current system as a solution. I do not. I don't see anything as a solution that allows one person to be dictated by another based on nothing but what is considered to be the "average" person (one that reaches maturity at 18). I see it as an easy fix meant to avoid the problem. The problem cannot be fixed until we identify what makes one capable to begin with. Certainly it is not age, I have seen far too many exceptions (and been one of them myself) for that to be true. As a logical person, I attempt to make solutions more perfect every day (I do not see this as an unattainable goal). Relying on a system that you believe is not perfect and not trying to make it better only allows for stagnation. If you believe our current system is as good as it can get, you will never have anything better, and apparently you will have to sacrifice some of your own beliefs to do so (based on what you said, which was that you thought there should be an objective standard). Otherwise, we can find a solution and grow. I know which scenario I will be happiest with and I have outlined the beginning plans for a new system above.

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That's true. It's not a bad idea, but from my research it doesn't seem that adequate. Some states require you to be living on your own first, which requires the parent's permission to begin with. Cases are usually only granted in instances of physical abuse, pregnancy, marriage (with parental permission), or military (with parental permission). Most of the decision seems to still be up to the parent, in most states you cannot even start the emancipation process by yourself if you are a minor. Furthermore, current work laws make it difficult for a minor to be completely self sufficient to begin with. This doesn't mean they are incapable, just that laws don't allow them to be. Every state seems to be different, but I found none that seem to be a solution. In theory, I would be open to a system that allowed minors to make their case before a court, but what we currently have doesn't impress me. It is better than nothing at all, but we can do a lot better.

Currently, at least in some U.S. states, the law allows teenagers to be "emancipated" before they reach 18. Here is an example from Connecticut.
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