Archive for August 2009

College Bound Seniors 2009 SAT Results

August 27, 2009

Looks like the SAT scores students have earned have remained about the same this year as last.

The big deal this year is diversity as it has been for many years. As the scores are about the same, there is nothing to celebrate nor is there a need for excuses so there is even more diversity celebration.

Included below are a couple of links. Interested in Florida overall results?  There are 15 pages of statistics, but couldn’t find an overall picture for Florida.

See press releases College Bound Seniors 2009.

See results for your state

Uncle Buck’s Unofficial Review of American History

August 18, 2009

This is an “Education Comments”, blog , but some of you may not be sure that is accurate. My purpose is to not only comment on education “stuff” going on in the public and private sectors, but to try to educate people about some things that are going on in this country and the world. Most of these comments will be critical because there are people in this country who want to tear it down. Actually, there were people who wanted to change our country right after the Constitution was signed.

Part I-  Here are some of the events that have transpired during my lifetime so far.

I was born a year and and few days before Nazi Germany invaded Poland. I don’t believe the two events were necessarily connected.

World War II remembered almost.

Two of my uncles were in World War II, stationed  in Africa and later in Europe.  When they were home on leave and after the war there were family gatherings celebrating their safe return. They usually brought something fr0m the countries they had been stationed in. I don’t remember much about the war except  for VJ (Victory over Japan) day. It was celebrated by people driving their cars to the center of town,  lots of honking of horns,  and the setting off of  firecrackers.

I remember playing war and wanting an army helmet, which I never got. I don’t think my parents were interested in training a future soldier.

Why I Love Pie

During the first few years of my life my father worked for one of my uncles by marriage. The job he had was delivering pies from my uncle’s bakery. Picture this, my Dad delivering pies on a motorcycle with the pies in a pie case in the sidecar. If they were to do the same thing today they would probably be breaking a thousand or more health, business regulations, and other various laws. There are some remarkable stories that have been handed down regarding the motorcycle, sidecar, pie rack and pies being driven on and sliding around on ice and snow. The funny thing is no one ever got hurt on or by the motorcycle or got food poisoning from the pies.

This uncle had a law degree, although, he never practiced law to my knowledge. He was an instructor at the Culver Military Academy in Culver, Indiana for awhile. He then started the pie bakery and my father delivered pies for him. He was always taking on some branch of government because of their interference with his personal property or personal  rights. I don’t think he was particularly a Democrat or a Republican, but a person whose interest was in a very small government that would not be strong enough to steal property or freedom from it’s citizens.

Were he alive today, he would still be fighting federal, state, and local governments for control of his own destiny. Perhaps he would also be in jail.

During  this uncle’s lifetime there was  a journalist,  H. L. Mencken (1880 to 1956). I first read Mencken several years ago. Mencken has fallen into disfavor with current journalists, if they can be called journalists. Most of today’s journalists really are cheer leaders for the statist government. There does not seem to be any professional reason to disrespect H. L., other than he had low regard for governments and government elected officials or bureaucrats. These people today seem to be held in high regard even though most of them are simply unconvicted crooks. H. L. was a great advocate of very small government, did not support FDR’s  New Deal,  entry into World War I, or W.W. II. I recommend you read some of his writings. We certainly need some of his ideas now. Here are some samples of his writings. Enjoy them. If you don’t like them, maybe you need to lighten up.

Here is a Constitution written by H L Mencken in 1937 for the New Deal. Could have been written just as appropriately for 2009.

More later

Uncle Buck


August 2, 2009

I recently read that 40% of U S income taxes are paid by 4% of the U S citizens and President Obama keeps talking about the top 5% of taxpayers who he is going to make pay for everything for the rest of us.

I am not sure those figures are really correct. Income taxes are paid by many different entities such as corporations, some non-profit organizations, and certain other entities that are not people. There is also some information going around that claims that 95% of the citizenry don’t pay any income taxes or if they do won’t have their taxes raised one dime. See the New York Times article for some serious comments from the left and the right. Perhaps these statements are correct as far as they go.

There are many names for taxes in the United States and the various States and many ways for them to be assessed. You can avoid some of these taxes by not using or consuming the article on which the tax is imposed. By not smoking, drinking alcoholic beverages,  using other products that have excise taxes, etc. you can avoid excise taxes.

One of the greatest proofs of who pays the tax is the sales tax. Sales tax is always paid by the last consumer and there shouldn’t be any question about that.  Buy something that requires sales tax and you prove my point.

Let’s consider a slightly more complicated purchase and how tax might be applied and who ends up paying the tax.

Let’s assume that all the parts of this product are made and sold by companies that make a profit. The other day we bought a lawn chair for $19.96 to use on our patio. This particular chair has plastic feet and drink holders which are formed from an oil by-product. For this small part of the chair we have the tax on the sale of land on which to drill,  tax on companies that explore for oil, tax on the manufacturing company that makes and sells the feet.  The frame is some kind of steel, the frame would incur taxes on the land bought for mining, the mining company that mines iron and any other products from mining to make steel, then there is the company that turns the ore into steel tubing or sheets. There are net seats and net backs sewn into cloth seats and backs so that there is air flow through both areas. Made from the same cloth material is the bag to store the folded chair. I am beginning to get tired of this so I will just state that we still need dye for the cloth, netting, and the storage bag, the thread used to sew the cloth, netting, and bag together, paint for the steel frame, the steel grommets that allows the seat and arms to slide up and down and other miscellaneous parts and supplies.

If the federal corporate tax rate is 50% based on all the profit from all these companies, and the profit is 25% of all the combined selling prices there is a calculated total federal tax on this chair of $19.96 X 25% = $4.99 and a tax rate of 50% = $2.50. The $2.50 does not include sales tax which in this case was $ 1.40.

Assuming that the above rates are somewhat accurate we paid $21.46 including sales tax and federal tax of $2.90 or 13.5% taxes paid by us as a consumer on this one item.

Think about how much “hidden” tax you are paying and how much more would you like to pay?