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Old 02-11-2004, 12:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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A man was given a $200,000 speeding ticket...

Here is an amusing article about a man who was fined approximately $200,000 dollars for speeding...
Quote:
One of Finland's richest men has been fined a record 170,000 euros ($217,000) for speeding through the center of the capital, police said on Tuesday.

Jussi Salonoja, 27, heir to his family's sausage business, was caught driving 50 miles per hour in a 25 mph zone last Thursday, the police said.

Finnish traffic fines vary according to the offender's income and, according to tax office data, Salonoja's 2002 earnings were close to seven million euros.

The final penalty could still change when the case is eventually heard by a Helsinki court, as was the case with Nokia (news - web sites) executive Anssi Vanjoki, whose 116,000-euro speeding fine was slashed by 95 percent in 2002 due to a drop in income.

If Salonoja's penalty stands, it will beat a speeding fine of more than 80,000 euros paid by Internet millionaire Jaakko Rytsola in 2000, and the 35,000-euro fine imposed on Nokia President Pekka Ala-Pietila in 2001 for running a red light.
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Old 02-11-2004, 04:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What's the incentive for a rich guy to obey traffic laws in the states? The finns are right on in regards to this.
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Old 02-11-2004, 07:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Interesting, although I dont think it will ever happen in the states, its a pretty good idea.
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Old 02-12-2004, 03:50 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Interesting concept.

I'm for a fixed percentage (flat) income tax, so why not flat-fines too? Make the fine 1/2 a percent of your annual income, and if you make $20k a year you pay $100. If you make $40 million, you pay $200,000.
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Old 02-14-2004, 04:30 AM   #5 (permalink)
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This is an excellent innovation by the Finns - fines certainly should be aimed at discouraging the criminal from repeating his or her actions.
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Old 02-14-2004, 07:59 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I agree to the fins. How would a normal fine deter someone so rich?
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Old 02-14-2004, 10:02 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Very interesting...*kelly nodds his head in agreement with others*
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Old 02-14-2004, 01:12 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Old 02-14-2004, 04:37 PM   #9 (permalink)
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sounds like a good idea

damn rich :P
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Old 02-14-2004, 08:05 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I think that is disgusting and wrong. The punishment should suit the crime--it has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with how much the offender makes.

I used to go to peoples' houses and fix their computers in my spare time. Some people I worked for could barely afford to pay me, others were absolutely loaded. My friends all suggested that I charge the rich people a whole lot more, but fuck that retarded bullshit mentality. I charged the same amount across the board because my work is worth the exact same regardless of who it's for. My time doesn't suddenly become worth twice as much because I'm fixing some rich guy's computer. Just like speeding doesn't suddenly become a far more severe crime just because a millionaire is at the wheel.

Sparhawk-- Rich people face having their insurance dropped, license revoked, etc. just like anybody else. Sure they can more easily afford a speeding ticket, but that kind of comes with having a lot of money.
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Old 02-15-2004, 01:17 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Communism on one hand, and sticking it to some spoiled rich fuck on the other.

I'm torn.
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Old 02-15-2004, 03:44 AM   #12 (permalink)
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The point is making the fine a punishment.

If you fine a millionaire £100 it is meaningless, there is no point in doing it. If you fined me £100 I would feel it and it would be tougher to make ends meet that month.

The point of this iniative isnt because the Finnish government hate rich people, the point is to make people obey the law - and to do that you have to have punishments available that will hurt criminals - to give them a reason not to re-offend.
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Old 02-15-2004, 11:34 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Right now I like the idea, but ask me in 20 years when I'm rich and I probably won't like it.
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Old 02-15-2004, 02:19 PM   #14 (permalink)
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This is absolutely unfair. If people commit the same crime they should get the same punishment. This is like saying if someone who makes $20,000 a year is convicted of a crime, drug possesion for instance, they should get half the jailtime of a person who makes $40,000 a year and is convicted of the same crime. This is ridiculous.

I'm a big fan of Scandinavian society, however.
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Old 02-15-2004, 02:49 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by User Name
This is absolutely unfair. If people commit the same crime they should get the same punishment. This is like saying if someone who makes $20,000 a year is convicted of a crime, drug possesion for instance, they should get half the jailtime of a person who makes $40,000 a year and is convicted of the same crime. This is ridiculous.

I'm a big fan of Scandinavian society, however.
I think the logic is that a $100 speeding ticket amounts to a mosquito bite to your average rich person, while it can mean groceries for the average poor person. This is an effort to make the punishment more equal.
How many speeding tickets could you afford to get if you were worth millions of dollars?
This has nothing to do with jailtime. This has to do with wealthy people being able to afford ignoring traffic laws.
The important lesson in all of this is: Don't get caught speeding.
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Old 02-15-2004, 05:03 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by filtherton
I think the logic is that a $100 speeding ticket amounts to a mosquito bite to your average rich person, while it can mean groceries for the average poor person. This is an effort to make the punishment more equal.
How many speeding tickets could you afford to get if you were worth millions of dollars?
This has nothing to do with jailtime. This has to do with wealthy people being able to afford ignoring traffic laws.
The important lesson in all of this is: Don't get caught speeding.
So? Rich people have a much easier time paying for food, utilities, etc., than the rest of us too. Like I said before, that's just part of being rich. And if you get enough tickets, you get your license revoked and/or your insurance dropped no matter how much money you have.

Punishments are supposed to be proportional to the crime--not how much of an impact it supposedly has on the offender. Unless of course you'd like to let any agoraphobic rapists and murderers out of their nice cozy jail cells.

Hell, just to play devil's advocate, how about we jack up speeding tickets on poor people? A new BMW is a lot safer going 30 over than a 20 year old pickup truck.
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Old 02-15-2004, 05:24 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by irseg
So? Rich people have a much easier time paying for food, utilities, etc., than the rest of us too. Like I said before, that's just part of being rich. And if you get enough tickets, you get your license revoked and/or your insurance dropped no matter how much money you have.
I dunno about licence revocation, that depends on the place. As for insurance, tickets result in higher premiums, which the wealthy can ususally afford. Granted, this is all hypthetical. I think a wealthy person with no licence is better of than a poor person with no licence any day.

Quote:
Punishments are supposed to be proportional to the crime--not how much of an impact it supposedly has on the offender. Unless of course you'd like to let any agoraphobic rapists and murderers out of their nice cozy jail cells.
Punishments are meant to deter crime. How is a rich person detered by a citation that results in the loss of a less than significant sum of money? How many speeding tickets could bill gates afford to get? How many could your average millionaire afford to get before they were affected to any significant degree? How many could you get?

Quote:
Hell, just to play devil's advocate, how about we jack up speeding tickets on poor people? A new BMW is a lot safer going 30 over than a 20 year old pickup truck.
I fail to see how your devilish advocation has anything to do with proportional fines based on wealth. They aren't fining people based on their choice of vehicle.
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Old 02-16-2004, 06:23 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by User Name
This is absolutely unfair. If people commit the same crime they should get the same punishment. This is like saying if someone who makes $20,000 a year is convicted of a crime, drug possesion for instance, they should get half the jailtime of a person who makes $40,000 a year and is convicted of the same crime.
Well, as you've said yourself, they should get the same punishment. Jailtime is jailtime, I don't care how large your checkbook is. But a fixed fine, on the other hand, is certainly not the same for someone making $20,000 a year versus someone making $40,000 a year. Prorating the fines simply levels the playing field.
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Old 02-16-2004, 06:25 AM   #19 (permalink)
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It's an interesting idea.. My question (coming from a society where speeding tickets are based on how fast you were going) is.. Is it working?

also, what happens if someone is unemployed? Do they get to speed all they want?
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Old 02-16-2004, 06:26 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by irseg
A new BMW is a lot safer going 30 over than a 20 year old pickup truck.
Hmmm...I'm not so sure about that. I'm thinking that I'd rather be strapped into my 1977 Chevy pickup, than in a new Beemer, should the two colide. Just my opinion though, I don't have any hard evidence between the two. Fortunately.
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Old 02-16-2004, 07:46 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Yeah, along the lines of Lost's post, everyone seems to be assuming that rich people are speeding or have a tendency to speed more often than working class people because the tickets are easily affordable. I've never seen any evidence of this, and I doubt anyone posting has any evidence for this - even though it's the basis of the argument.
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Old 02-16-2004, 09:56 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by losthellhound
My question (coming from a society where speeding tickets are based on how fast you were going) is.. Is it working?

what happens if someone is unemployed? Do they get to speed all they want?
It works. It really does. I lived in Finland for 25 years, and I'd say the system is pretty good. If you're unemployed, or make average money, the fine is about right and just, and the curve from thereon to wealthier people is relatively smooth. I got fined when I was unemployed, and that (unemployment) is definitely a consideration.

Quote:
Originally posted by matthew330
Yeah, along the lines of Lost's post, everyone seems to be assuming that rich people are speeding or have a tendency to speed more often than working class people because the tickets are easily affordable. I've never seen any evidence of this, and I doubt anyone posting has any evidence for this - even though it's the basis of the argument.
I've no evidence for this either, but I feel like I should point something out. These large fines have always hit the news in Finland, and in each case the speeding was not minor, it was significant. Honestly, the speed these people were going, you'd think they really thought they were above the law. Like that one guy that went well over 220 kmh, that's 2x the highway speed limit. You don't just do that accidentally...besides, mind you, if I had done that, the unemployed me, I wouldn't have just gotten fined, I'd have lost my license permanently on the spot and have had my car towed away. Rich people DO get away with enough without them having to pay just nickles and dimes for violating the law.
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Old 02-16-2004, 10:46 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Why is there such resentment for the rich in America today? Why do we hate the industrialist whose innovations and processes have created jobs and raised our standard of living?

There was a time when people like Carnegie, Rockefeller, and Gates were the American dream. Now we're suspicious of anyone who succeeds in life. Well guess what folks. Their are people in this world who are smarter, harder working, and more successful than you and me. They're rich and they deserve to be. It's not governments job to redistribute their income to us through taxes or in this case, some stupid ass speeding ticket.

Who hasn't ever gone 25 over in some low speed zone? I have and I bet you have too. I just want to live in a society where the rules are the same for everyone and success is something to be proud of. I've accepted the fact that Europe has largely gone socialist but what is wrong with us?
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Old 02-17-2004, 04:15 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dostoevsky
Why is there such resentment for the rich in America today? Why do we hate the industrialist whose innovations and processes have created jobs and raised our standard of living?

There was a time when people like Carnegie, Rockefeller, and Gates were the American dream. Now we're suspicious of anyone who succeeds in life. Well guess what folks. Their are people in this world who are smarter, harder working, and more successful than you and me. They're rich and they deserve to be. It's not governments job to redistribute their income to us through taxes or in this case, some stupid ass speeding ticket.

Who hasn't ever gone 25 over in some low speed zone? I have and I bet you have too. I just want to live in a society where the rules are the same for everyone and success is something to be proud of. I've accepted the fact that Europe has largely gone socialist but what is wrong with us?
I think you're missing two points here.

People don't resent those who made the money through innovations and hard work, and thus earned it. But the great majority of the so-called rich people did not do this. They inherited the wealth they have, they did nothing whatsoever to accomplish it. Gates, for one, might be the American dream, if the American dream is about getting filthy rich. Not being born in America I always assumed it was about being happy, raising a family and getting by.

And the other point was, that these traffic violations we were discussing aren't 25 over the limit, they're twice or more the speed limit, which shows little regard for the law. And if all you get for breaking the law is a slap on the wrist, then what's stopping you from doing it again? Honour or dignity? The filthy rich can afford to live without either.
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Old 02-17-2004, 05:35 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dostoevsky
Why is there such resentment for the rich in America today? Why do we hate the industrialist whose innovations and processes have created jobs and raised our standard of living?

There was a time when people like Carnegie, Rockefeller, and Gates were the American dream. Now we're suspicious of anyone who succeeds in life. Well guess what folks. Their are people in this world who are smarter, harder working, and more successful than you and me. They're rich and they deserve to be. It's not governments job to redistribute their income to us through taxes or in this case, some stupid ass speeding ticket.
Gosh, you make it sound like the logic behind proportional fines is that poor folks are jealous of rich folks. I know there are people in this world who are smarter and harder working than me. I also know that being smart and hard working doesn't make you rich, just ask our president, or paris hilton. As for "redistributing the wealth", the richest of us currently don't pay enough taxes to account for the amount of wealth that they control.

This isn't about "taking the rich down a notch". This is about handing out punishments that sting everybody, regardless of their wealth.
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Old 02-17-2004, 06:58 AM   #26 (permalink)
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I think two times the legal speed limit (at least in some states), is considered assault with a deadly weapon. The cop actually pulls you over, draws his gun and makes you step out of the car with your hands up and carts you off t jail - regardless of your income.




The rich don't pay enough taxes? 50% of the pop pays less than 4% of all taxes.

The top 5% pay over half. As far as i'm concerned, they pay plenty.
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:00 AM   #27 (permalink)
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...to save you the an extra mouse click - i got that from limbaugh's website.
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:05 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Funny thing is, I don't even think this is as much of an "equalizer" as we think it is. I mean, it comes down to subsistence...cost of living.

A person on the poverty line who loses 5% of their yearly income will be losing money that would have been used specifically to pay the rent and purchase groceries and simply get by. A multi-millionaire has already met their basic cost of living many times over. 5% is certainly 5% less than can be invested (or enjoyed) that year but it won't stop the upward momentum of an intelligent investors fortunes and it certainly won't send them to the soup kitchen. It's certainly more of a hit than the equivalent of the poor person's 5% but it just simply isn't going to have the same impact on lifestyle.

I think in the end, the only people who think this is a real "gotcha" idea are the middle class who don't see money the same way as either the very rich or very poor see money.
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:51 AM   #29 (permalink)
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It is the saying "the punishment should fit the crime". So what do we do if a rich guy assaults someone? Stick him in prison with a sentence proportional to his earnings? I think everyone should recieve the same punishment relating to the seriousness of the crime and not the wallet.

As seeing he's a successful business man why don't they make him do some sort of "community service" I'm pretty sure a days work from him is more valuable to him then the hard stuff. The local community also get something back instead of the fine going through all the legal stages and in the end will cost the taxpayers more then what is recovered.
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Old 02-17-2004, 10:02 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Originally posted by Prince:

"People don't resent those who made the money through innovations and hard work, and thus earned it. But the great majority of the so-called rich people did not do this. They inherited the wealth they have, they did nothing whatsoever to accomplish it."

So it is your opinion that government is entitled to any wealth that isn't first generation?

Originally posted by filtherton:

"As for "redistributing the wealth", the richest of us currently don't pay enough taxes to account for the amount of wealth that they control."

That erroneous thinking is what I'm trying to address here. The rich don't owe an extra debt to society just because they can afford to pay it. Someone in their family earned it and it's theirs, not yours, not mine, theirs. That fundamental difference in philosophy is what separates us.
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Old 02-17-2004, 10:59 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dostoevsky

That erroneous thinking is what I'm trying to address here. The rich don't owe an extra debt to society just because they can afford to pay it. Someone in their family earned it and it's theirs, not yours, not mine, theirs. That fundamental difference in philosophy is what separates us.
How is my thinking erroneous? The wealthy have benefitted the most from the protections afforded them by the american goverment in our capitalist economy. The top 5% hold more than 60% of all household wealth. I don't care if they earned it or not. If you are in the top 5% and you're crying about taxes than you really need to readjust your priorities.
Despite what you may think, taxation is not tantamount to thievery.


Quote:
Originally posted by llama8
It is the saying "the punishment should fit the crime". So what do we do if a rich guy assaults someone? Stick him in prison with a sentence proportional to his earnings? I think everyone should recieve the same punishment relating to the seriousness of the crime and not the wallet.

As seeing he's a successful business man why don't they make him do some sort of "community service" I'm pretty sure a days work from him is more valuable to him then the hard stuff. The local community also get something back instead of the fine going through all the legal stages and in the end will cost the taxpayers more then what is recovered.

Slippery slopage. BFollowing your example, poor people would never spend any more than a day in prison. That doesn't seem to be happening over there in finland. I fail to see how your analogy even applies. Don't forget, we're just talking about fines here, not jailtime or community service.
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Old 02-17-2004, 12:04 PM   #32 (permalink)
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This has been said repeatedly but some of you are clearly missing the point...

Penalty should fit the crime.

For a poor person 10 years in jail is just as bad as 10 years for a rich person.

For a poor person a 200 dollar fine will put a hamper on their groceries that month.

For a rich person 200 dollar fine will do absolutely nothing and have no effect.

Thats the argument and its a damn good one.
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Old 02-17-2004, 12:48 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Old 02-17-2004, 07:51 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by seretogis
Interesting concept.

I'm for a fixed percentage (flat) income tax, so why not flat-fines too? Make the fine 1/2 a percent of your annual income, and if you make $20k a year you pay $100. If you make $40 million, you pay $200,000.
Woohoo, I pay nothing!
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Old 02-17-2004, 09:12 PM   #35 (permalink)
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I don't think anyone is missing the point here, we are just clearly divided on philosophy. O well, can't save everyone.
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Old 02-18-2004, 12:09 PM   #36 (permalink)
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If the punishment should be equivilent...

Crimes could be punished by a change in your income tax for both the previous and current year. Say, 0.25% increase in income tax.

That is effectively the same punishment as a fine based off a percentage of your income, but it is "the same punishment".

I mean, a rich person in jail loses 10 years of income, at say 1 million per year. A poor person in jail loses 10 years of income, at 10,000$ per year. That's 100 times more money for the rich person! Unfair!

The rich person should go to jail for 36 days, he's lose the same amount of income as the poor did from 10 years in jail... =)

You should charge people in such a way that your income is maximized. Charge 25$ an hour for fixing their computer if they bring it to you and schedual it at least 1 week in advance, 35$ an hour if you do an onsite call schedualed 1 week in advance, and 50$ an hour for immediate onsite work. The "rich" won't blink at paying the higher rates, while the poor will save mony by bringing it into your "shop", maximizing your revenue. (yes, the numbers are sketchy)

You should fine people in such a way that the crimes are avoided sufficiently. With a system that does damage using fines to every socioeconomic system, you wouldn't have to take away someone's drivers liscence for speeding: just keep fining them in increasing amounts until they go bankrupt or stop.
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Old 02-24-2004, 07:49 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
[i] How many speeding tickets could bill gates afford to get? [/B]
230,000 @ $200,000.00 each, scary
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Old 02-24-2004, 12:48 PM   #38 (permalink)
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I was thinking abit more about this and I've changed my mind and support the idea.

The thought process went something like this:

-The punishment should fit the crime.

-When the punishment is incarceration, there is no distinction between rich and poor, except for money lost when one can work.

-A rich man earns more in one day than a poor man.

-Therefore if a fine is imposed instead of incarceration, then it is appropriate that the fine be more for the wealthy man.
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Old 02-24-2004, 01:57 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Lebell got it. If the fine is money, take it in proportion to the earnings. Wealth generally does not determine the longevity of ones life, so equal jail sentences would be suitable.
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Old 02-24-2004, 02:59 PM   #40 (permalink)
Crazy
 
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Location: Obliviousness
Quote:
Originally posted by matthew330
...to save you the an extra mouse click - i got that from limbaugh's website.
Well THERE'S a trustworthy source. The man who wants to stick it to drug offenders but when he's on the other side of the issue, rehab's just fine and he doesn't deserve jail time. what a bunch of shit.
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