Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
Not so much a thought experiment as a single neuron misfire.

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Bond. Project Bond

Crowdfunding for public priorities
  [vote for,

Taxation has many negative connotations, including its involuntary nature and the perception of inefficient and wasteful spending. And of course, the feeling, for most of us, our money is not being spent on our priorities.

Much has also been made recently of the "Buffett Rule", with critics often pointing out that those who feel under- taxed are free to pay more, with the US House passing a symbolic resolution to that effect just days ago. But as we all know, few are likely to take advantage of this opportunity, for all the reasons listed in the first paragraph.

The governments ability for raising money for specific projects via bonds, be it for war or construction purposes has always existed, of course. But it seems to me that crowdfunding would be a much more efficient method to achieve the same goal, allowing project backers to streamline marketing and fundraising, and perhaps even privatization where appropriate, so that rather than debt you might receive equity (finally, you can get a piece of that Brooklyn Bridge -- just send in some bucks for that restoration).

Accredited projects with tax authority approvals would count towards your overall tax burden, but the notion of paying for things that you are actually interested in, and a sense of ownership that comes with it, might actually encourage people to spend beyond their minimal obligations.

theircompetitor, Sep 25 2012

Like this. But for the moon colony. Or whatever. http://www.smartpla...-city-projects/2601
[theircompetitor, Sep 25 2012]


       What about line-item tax allocation? But then, who will choose to have all their taxes go to paying off interest on the U.S. debt, for example?   

       Who will decide how much the U.S. military is spending when the GAO found 2011, 'serious financial management problems at the Department of Defense that made its financial statements unauditable'?
4and20, Sep 25 2012

       [bigsleep] -- perhaps i should have been clearer -- I'm not envisioning this as a private enterprise. I'm envisioning this as a government run initiative.   

       And [4and20] -- I'm not implying this would replace the tax code -- only supplement it in a directed way.
theircompetitor, Sep 25 2012

       Monetary policy is such a strange animal. At least at the national level, countries are manipulating the rate at which they issue or borrow currency at ever-changing rates. Yet it seems to be more goal-oriented than a system based on strictly accountable math.   

       So offloading a significant amount of that responsibility to "the people" who make comparatively nothing and have no way to make it up wouldn't necessarily increase the rationality.   

       Still, locally, or even as national discretionary spending, which includes defense, bonds would have some place, provided it's not a mechanism for the mostly rich to vote with their money.
4and20, Sep 25 2012


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