Monday, May 16, 2011

Ireland to Steal Pensions?

Ireland considers the inevitable theft of the rest of the money -
The Irish government plans to institute a tax on private pensions to drive jobs growth, according to its jobs program strategy, delivered today.

Without the ability sell debt due to soaring interest rates, and with severe spending rules in place due to its EU-IMF bailout, Ireland has few ways of spending to stimulate the economy. Today's jobs program includes specific tax increases, including the tax on pensions, aimed at keeping government jobs spending from adding to the national debt.

The tax on private pensions will be 0.6%, and last for four years, according to the report.
The Real Effect
Let's examine the insanity on display here:
  1. This position assumes there is no such thing as private property rights. This is the most egregious of all the issues here.
  2. It also assumes that the government/economy merely needs to be "juiced" to get things rolling again. Like a addict 'on a roll' in Vegas, they just need some more caaaash before they hit it big.
  3. This will not end after four years and as Denninger was quick to point out, after 40 years being taxed at a mere 0.6%, 27% of your nest egg will be gone.
  4. There is an implied moral hazard here. If the government has the right to tax (read take) part of your retirement, what is to stop them from taking most to all of it?
  5. Other countries WILL emulate this behavior. Argentina has done so already.
  6. This will most significantly hit two groups, the elderly first and the inheritance generation second.
  7. and the most important of issues - Seizing private capital to kickstart the economy will generate the exact opposite effect as individuals will not invest in order to hide what little capital they have left.

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