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Walter's Thoughts

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The Incentive Bubble

A medium-length piece from the Harvard Business Review makes an important point:

Turning points in economic policy

This is an interesting chart. Note the pop-up explanations in the triangles at the top. http://billmoyers.com/content/the-triggers-of-economic-inequality/

Economic Policy

(text of video)

Economy Policy

Hi, I’m Walter Hofheinz. I’m running for U.S. Representative for the 32nd District of Texas.

Trickle-down economics does not work. It didn't work in the 20th century, and it is not working now. Giving more to the wealthiest among us simply increases financial assets, without an increase in jobs and real assets.

Financing Government

(text of video)

Financing Government

Hi, I’m Walter Hofheinz. I’m running for U.S. Representative for the 32nd District of Texas.

I know what I have to say on this topic won’t be popular, but someone needs to tell the truth and it might as well be me.

My tax policy teacher in law school was fond of the saying “There’s no free lunch.”

Education - key to opportunity

A story in the New York times today, Education Gap Grows Between Rich and Poor, Studies Say, highlights the need for additional resources to be devoted to making higher education affordable.

Transportation balance

The transportation bill before the House endorsed by House Republican leadership is wrong-headed. In diverting all funds to highways, providing no mandatory allocation for public transportation, and attaching unrelated provisions related to the oil and gas industry it illustrates two fundamental mistakes in substance and process, and why my Republican opponent Pete Session, who holds a leadership position in that process needs to be fired.

Why I am running

(Text of video)

Hi, I’m Walter Hofheinz.  I’m running for U.S. Representative for the 32nd Congressional District of Texas.

Why am I running?  I believe effective, responsible government can be part of the solution, not the problem. It’s my offer to work on a broader scope to leave the world a better place for those who come after me, with more opportunity, a better, more secure quality of life, and a fairer, more just society.

Tax fairness

In an interesting and illustrative piece in the New York Time, "Paying Far More Than 13.9%: A Taxpayer’s Lament", the writer discusses his actual tax rate, taking into account all taxes:

"I paid 24 percent of my adjusted gross income in federal taxes and 37 percent in combined federal, state and local income taxes. I paid 49 percent of my taxable income in federal income tax, and 74 percent of my taxable income in combined federal, state and local income taxes. My totals include federal payroll and self-employment taxes.

Interesting New Year Observations

Today I read an interesting piece in the New York Times: "I Just Got Here, but I Know Trouble When I See It" Each offers a thought-proving perspective on various problems we face.

Of particular interest is the section that begins "Why do many middle-class families now struggle to get by on two paychecks, whereas most got by on just one back in the 1950s and ’60s?" which offers the concept of the "toil index" — the amount needed for a family to afford median housing, read in conjunction with the section "A Tax Credit to Fix A Housing Mess."

Why we need change

A recent headline "Deficit committee locked in budget stalemate" highlights the need for new, effective membership and leadership in Congress.

Simplistic solutions to our long term fiscal problem, like simply cutting spending — most often focused on those items providing benefits to those unable to provide for themselves, such as social security and medicare — simply will not solve the problem. This is particularly true if one takes off the table any discussion of effective solutions to the elephant in the room: rapidly escalating health care costs.

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