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September 29, 2008

Ace's Voluntary Buy-In Bailout Program

Since people are screaming "socialism," make it voluntary.

All taxpayers can contribute money that would ordinary go to paying their taxes into a pool to purchase these toxic assets at a 1:1 ratio. Take $1000 you would have paid Uncle Sam in taxes and instead direct that $1000 directly into paying into a pool to purchase these assets.

Some limitation must be placed on this, of course. Perhaps a minimum of $1000, or up to 10% of your entire tax liability or $20,000 total, whichever is lower.

You buy into the pool. Once you buy in, you are owed pro-rata profits on how the pool performs. You may not get your money back, but if you do, you'll get a special low capital gains rate on these profits. Say...5%.

Now, people are going to want to invest in the pool, because either way, that money is gone, as it was being paid to the government anyway.

Any fool will make the maximum allowable contribution to the pool. Those who still think this is socialism can choose not to buy-in, however. Their choice. If they'd rather their taxes go completely to funding the government's ongoing functions, fine by me.

But most will deem it not socialism. It's people choosing to invest their tax payer dollars into a program run by government officials but whose profits are purely private. If government involvement is still too "socialist," fine, charter a purely private organization (but formed by government license and legislation) and with lots of oversight. Including shareholder rights to fire the board.

There.

The program is sunsetted after six years maximum. They can take up to six years to sell out these toxic assets, but only six. At six years they must sell anything left, even if the lots are being sold for pennies on the dollar.

How you like that?

Now, the thing is, people will say, "Ace, that is virtually exactly what is being proposed anyway. You're just making tiny tweaks to make it not 'socialist'.

Exactly. It is no different, really. But if you want the branding, there it is.


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posted by Ace at 07:04 PM

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