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Author Topic: Libertarianism and externalities  (Read 6435 times)
AyeYo
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June 27, 2011, 04:10:57 PM
 #81

Tariffs and national highways, just to name a couple.

LOL  Not sure if serious...

Well, actually walmart gets a huge advantage through the use of the tax-funded federal highway system that we all are forced to fund.  It artificially lowers the cost of long-distance transport of goods, thus giving walmart an unfair advantage over your local mom-and-pop store that acquire goods locally.

Completely untrue, because mom and pop shops make use of public roadways also, as do their customers.  ALL businesses benefit from public roadways directly or indirectly, so that's probably the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard and I hope he isn't serious.

The whole argument that "we all benefit from so-called 'public' roads, therefore we should fund them through violence" is so perverse to begin with.  Assuming no such thing as 'public roads', then that means only those people who use roads or purchase goods/services that used roads would bear the massive costs associated with construction and upkeep of the roads.  So businesses that produce and use goods/services locally would likely be more prevalent in a society without tax-funded roads and highways.


Public roads are a different topic and completely irrelevant to the existence of large manufacturing plants.

Did you forget, Walmart pays taxes too?  They aren't using the roads for free, like you're making it sound.

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June 27, 2011, 04:23:31 PM
 #82

Tariffs and national highways, just to name a couple.

LOL  Not sure if serious...

Well, actually walmart gets a huge advantage through the use of the tax-funded federal highway system that we all are forced to fund.  It artificially lowers the cost of long-distance transport of goods, thus giving walmart an unfair advantage over your local mom-and-pop store that acquire goods locally.

Completely untrue, because mom and pop shops make use of public roadways also, as do their customers.  ALL businesses benefit from public roadways directly or indirectly, so that's probably the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard and I hope he isn't serious.

The whole argument that "we all benefit from so-called 'public' roads, therefore we should fund them through violence" is so perverse to begin with.  Assuming no such thing as 'public roads', then that means only those people who use roads or purchase goods/services that used roads would bear the massive costs associated with construction and upkeep of the roads.  So businesses that produce and use goods/services locally would likely be more prevalent in a society without tax-funded roads and highways.


Public roads are a different topic and completely irrelevant to the existence of large manufacturing plants.

Did you forget, Walmart pays taxes too?  They aren't using the roads for free, like you're making it sound.
Walmart disproportionately benefits.

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AyeYo
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June 27, 2011, 04:30:51 PM
 #83

Tariffs and national highways, just to name a couple.

LOL  Not sure if serious...

Well, actually walmart gets a huge advantage through the use of the tax-funded federal highway system that we all are forced to fund.  It artificially lowers the cost of long-distance transport of goods, thus giving walmart an unfair advantage over your local mom-and-pop store that acquire goods locally.

Completely untrue, because mom and pop shops make use of public roadways also, as do their customers.  ALL businesses benefit from public roadways directly or indirectly, so that's probably the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard and I hope he isn't serious.

The whole argument that "we all benefit from so-called 'public' roads, therefore we should fund them through violence" is so perverse to begin with.  Assuming no such thing as 'public roads', then that means only those people who use roads or purchase goods/services that used roads would bear the massive costs associated with construction and upkeep of the roads.  So businesses that produce and use goods/services locally would likely be more prevalent in a society without tax-funded roads and highways.


Public roads are a different topic and completely irrelevant to the existence of large manufacturing plants.

Did you forget, Walmart pays taxes too?  They aren't using the roads for free, like you're making it sound.
Walmart disproportionately benefits.

They also pay infinitely more taxes than mom and pop shops.

Show me the numbers or GTFO out.

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LokeRundt
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June 27, 2011, 04:52:59 PM
 #84

Sorry, I was too busy partaking in agorist economics (real-time) to follow all your bull and comment on it.  Thankfully, em3rgentOrder and others have more of a sense of self-punishment and are willing to entertain AyeYo's bull

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June 27, 2011, 04:58:56 PM
 #85

Tariffs and national highways, just to name a couple.

LOL  Not sure if serious...

Well, actually walmart gets a huge advantage through the use of the tax-funded federal highway system that we all are forced to fund.  It artificially lowers the cost of long-distance transport of goods, thus giving walmart an unfair advantage over your local mom-and-pop store that acquire goods locally.

Completely untrue, because mom and pop shops make use of public roadways also, as do their customers.  ALL businesses benefit from public roadways directly or indirectly, so that's probably the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard and I hope he isn't serious.

The whole argument that "we all benefit from so-called 'public' roads, therefore we should fund them through violence" is so perverse to begin with.  Assuming no such thing as 'public roads', then that means only those people who use roads or purchase goods/services that used roads would bear the massive costs associated with construction and upkeep of the roads.  So businesses that produce and use goods/services locally would likely be more prevalent in a society without tax-funded roads and highways.


Public roads are a different topic and completely irrelevant to the existence of large manufacturing plants.

Did you forget, Walmart pays taxes too?  They aren't using the roads for free, like you're making it sound.
Walmart disproportionately benefits.

They also pay infinitely more taxes than mom and pop shops.

Show me the numbers or GTFO out.

"infinitely more" Huh YOU GTFO, Motherfucker. If Walmart is paying infinite taxes, then we should have no budget deficit, and can afford the skittles-pooping unicorns for everyone.

By use of the word "also", you imply that you do acknowledge a DISPROPORTIONATE benefit. This is wise of you as you would be foolish to argue that locally produced food is transported farther than remotely-produced merchandise.

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AyeYo
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June 27, 2011, 05:16:55 PM
 #86

Tariffs and national highways, just to name a couple.

LOL  Not sure if serious...

Well, actually walmart gets a huge advantage through the use of the tax-funded federal highway system that we all are forced to fund.  It artificially lowers the cost of long-distance transport of goods, thus giving walmart an unfair advantage over your local mom-and-pop store that acquire goods locally.

Completely untrue, because mom and pop shops make use of public roadways also, as do their customers.  ALL businesses benefit from public roadways directly or indirectly, so that's probably the most ridiculous argument I've ever heard and I hope he isn't serious.

The whole argument that "we all benefit from so-called 'public' roads, therefore we should fund them through violence" is so perverse to begin with.  Assuming no such thing as 'public roads', then that means only those people who use roads or purchase goods/services that used roads would bear the massive costs associated with construction and upkeep of the roads.  So businesses that produce and use goods/services locally would likely be more prevalent in a society without tax-funded roads and highways.


Public roads are a different topic and completely irrelevant to the existence of large manufacturing plants.

Did you forget, Walmart pays taxes too?  They aren't using the roads for free, like you're making it sound.
Walmart disproportionately benefits.

They also pay infinitely more taxes than mom and pop shops.

Show me the numbers or GTFO out.

"infinitely more" Huh YOU GTFO, Motherfucker. If Walmart is paying infinite taxes, then we should have no budget deficit, and can afford the skittles-pooping unicorns for everyone.

By use of the word "also", you imply that you do acknowledge a DISPROPORTIONATE benefit. This is wise of you as you would be foolish to argue that locally produced food is transported farther than remotely-produced merchandise.


Show me the numbers or GTFO.  You keep making all these claims about how Walmart is reaping massive benefits from publicly funded roads and it's giving them an advantage, SHOW ME THE NUMBERS.


Also, still wondering how advanced devices like a GPU or such can be manufactured without a massive facility.

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June 27, 2011, 05:29:38 PM
 #87

Sorry, I was too busy partaking in agorist economics (real-time) to follow all your bull and comment on it.  Thankfully, em3rgentOrder and others have more of a sense of self-punishment and are willing to entertain AyeYo's bull

Good advice.  Smiley

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June 27, 2011, 05:43:53 PM
 #88

Show me the numbers or GTFO.  You keep making all these claims about how Walmart is reaping massive benefits from publicly funded roads and it's giving them an advantage, SHOW ME THE NUMBERS.


Also, still wondering how advanced devices like a GPU or such can be manufactured without a massive facility.

Mom & pop store buys a shipment of goods. It comes in what is essentially a moving van, dropped off by one guy.

Walmart buys a shipment of goods, it comes in a Semi-truck (Which they own a fleet of), and is unloaded by a team of associates paid to do nothing but.

It's called economy of scale. Walmart has a higher cost per shipment, but a disproportional amount of profit, because they average that cost over a much larger amount of goods. Yet, they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment. The price of the roads being factored into the gas prices, probably much less (Both trucks run on a diesel engine, but the semi uses less fuel, as a percentage of the profit from the shipment, than does the smaller truck).

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AyeYo
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June 27, 2011, 05:50:06 PM
 #89

Show me the numbers or GTFO.  You keep making all these claims about how Walmart is reaping massive benefits from publicly funded roads and it's giving them an advantage, SHOW ME THE NUMBERS.


Also, still wondering how advanced devices like a GPU or such can be manufactured without a massive facility.

Mom & pop store buys a shipment of goods. It comes in what is essentially a moving van, dropped off by one guy.

Walmart buys a shipment of goods, it comes in a Semi-truck (Which they own a fleet of), and is unloaded by a team of associates paid to do nothing but.

It's called economy of scale. Walmart has a higher cost per shipment, but a disproportional amount of profit, because they average that cost over a much larger amount of goods. Yet, they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment. The price of the roads being factored into the gas prices, probably much less (Both trucks run on a diesel engine, but the semi uses less fuel, as a percentage of the profit from the shipment, than does the smaller truck).

SHOW ME THE NUMBERS.

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June 27, 2011, 05:53:39 PM
 #90

www.google.com

Have fun.

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June 27, 2011, 06:03:09 PM
 #91

It's called economy of scale. Walmart has a higher cost per shipment, but a disproportional amount of profit, because they average that cost over a much larger amount of goods. Yet, they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment. The price of the roads being factored into the gas prices, probably much less (Both trucks run on a diesel engine, but the semi uses less fuel, as a percentage of the profit from the shipment, than does the smaller truck).

You want to punish WalMart for being effective and utilizing economy of scale?

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June 27, 2011, 06:05:51 PM
 #92

One word.  Accountability.

There's a fair amount of libertarians on this forum, so I guess this question is not completely out of place here: how does libertarianism handle the problem of externalities?  I'm thinking in particular of problems such as acid rain (some of the younger ones may not remember this, but it used to be a serious problem in Europe and the US back in the 70s and 80s, though the situation has largely improved since the introduction of strong regulations on sulfur emissions from power plants), or a more contemporary example like CO2 emissions and their role in anthropogenic global warming.

Feel free to point me to some external resource that you feel presents a good libertarian solution to this problem.  I'm genuinely curious.

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June 27, 2011, 06:17:20 PM
 #93

It's called economy of scale. Walmart has a higher cost per shipment, but a disproportional amount of profit, because they average that cost over a much larger amount of goods. Yet, they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment. The price of the roads being factored into the gas prices, probably much less (Both trucks run on a diesel engine, but the semi uses less fuel, as a percentage of the profit from the shipment, than does the smaller truck).

You want to punish WalMart for being effective and utilizing economy of scale?

No, of course not. I just want to remove the taxes. It may turn out, that without 'Most favored nation status' on China and the subsidized roads, Wal-mart won't be able to keep up with mom-and-pop stores selling locally produced goods. They'd still have economies of scale, and if they can broker a deal with local producers, could probably still push out the mom&pops. The fact of the matter is, we really don't know exactly what would happen, if we didn't have Government making a tweak here, and a tweak there, and just had the system running as it should.

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AyeYo
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June 27, 2011, 06:21:12 PM
 #94


Since you have no idea what you're talking about, I'll post some numbers for you.

http://cdn.walmartstores.com/sites/AnnualReport/2010/PDF/01_WMT%202010_Financials.pdf

Walmart alloted $7.436 BILLION for taxes in 2010 (page 17).

There, I did half your work for you.  Now it's your turn to browse some mom and pop finanical statements and prove your assertion that Walmart pays "almost exactly the same amount of taxes".  Good luck.

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June 27, 2011, 06:41:13 PM
 #95

compare that as a percentage of their revenue vs. mom&pops

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June 27, 2011, 06:46:11 PM
 #96

compare that as a percentage of their revenue vs. mom&pops

Nope.  Nice try though.

His exact words were: "they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment"

I got their tax information for him.  Now he can find the rest of the info he needs and do the calculations to prove his claim, otherwise he's just pulling statements out of his ass.

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June 27, 2011, 06:53:42 PM
 #97

compare that as a percentage of their revenue vs. mom&pops

Nope.  Nice try though.

His exact words were: "they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment"

I got their tax information for him.  Now he can find the rest of the info he needs and do the calculations to prove his claim, otherwise he's just pulling statements out of his ass.

Good. Now, find me how much walmart paid, nationally, for incoming goods. THEN you will have done half my work for me. Then I'll walk down to the corner and ask the owner of the convenience store.

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June 27, 2011, 07:02:12 PM
 #98

compare that as a percentage of their revenue vs. mom&pops

Nope.  Nice try though.

His exact words were: "they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment"

I got their tax information for him.  Now he can find the rest of the info he needs and do the calculations to prove his claim, otherwise he's just pulling statements out of his ass.

Good. Now, find me how much walmart paid, nationally, for incoming goods. THEN you will have done half my work for me. Then I'll walk down to the corner and ask the owner of the convenience store.

You put in your own work around here.  You want to be taken seriously and not just laughed at as the angry little kid in the room, then provide proof for your claims.  Otherwise I'll just start laughing at everything you say.


Still waiting to hear how high tech and complex products can be made without massive facilities.

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June 27, 2011, 07:05:55 PM
 #99

They don't pay for incoming goods per se.  They pay shipping and import costs.  The stuff they sell at Walmart in China is mostly the same stuff right down the English labelling.  It's more of an internal transport of goods.

compare that as a percentage of their revenue vs. mom&pops

Nope.  Nice try though.

His exact words were: "they pay almost exactly the same amount of taxes, proportional to the cost of shipment"

I got their tax information for him.  Now he can find the rest of the info he needs and do the calculations to prove his claim, otherwise he's just pulling statements out of his ass.

Good. Now, find me how much walmart paid, nationally, for incoming goods. THEN you will have done half my work for me. Then I'll walk down to the corner and ask the owner of the convenience store.
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June 27, 2011, 07:54:29 PM
 #100

Assuming that the numbers in that chart on page 30 (not 17, learn to read page numbers) Are in fact in the billions, which is a reasonable assumption, though in my perusal of the document I did not find specific information saying so, Walmart paid 304.657 billion as 'Cost of sales' (in other words, incoming goods.) Actual numbers are moot, however, since we're dealing with percentages here. Expressed as a percentage of cost of incoming goods, Walmart paid 2.44% in taxes. If you include operating costs (since walmart doesn't split off numbers for their shipping arm in this document, we'll have to) That adds another 79 billion, bringing the total percentage down to 1.9% But even that's not exactly accurate, since for it to be accurate, the tax has to be considered a part of that operating expense, so we have to add that in, bringing the percentage down to 1.8%

But ALL of this is irrelevant, since the specific taxes I was speaking about was the GAS tax which is what actually goes to fund the roads, and the number you quoted above was the INCOME tax.

I don't need to do any math at all to show that carrying 16 pallets in a semi is more fuel-efficient than carrying 1 pallet's worth of individual items in a small diesel truck. Proportional to the cost of one shipment, Walmart pays less in GAS TAX per shipment than does the Mom & Pop. In a free market system, Mom & Pops who sell locally produced items would handily be able to compete with the 'big box' stores which ship their goods in from all over, since the actual cost of shipping that banana in from Peru would be reflected in the price, and not externalized to the taxpayers via trade subsidies, gas taxes, and other factors.

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