Post for Dec 4-10 2016

TaN: Food is something that can be eaten uncooked — i.e., not subjected to heat.  This does not mean that you have to eat it raw, just that you can but may choose not to eat it raw.

If something must be subjected to heating prior to eating, then it is not (your) food.  It may be food for some other creature but not for you.

Heating prior to eating only means that you have to “disguise” or transform the “food” — both in appearance and taste — for all intents and purposes, into something the body will not recognize as foreign or alien.

All consuming living creatures have an innate knowledge of what is food — specifically, what its own food is supposed to be (except probably for man).  The body recognizes what is food and what is not because it is essential to survival — and proper health.  Not knowing which is food and which is not means the organism will starve to death.

However, this does not mean that consuming what is its own natural food will cause death or at least not immediately — with the possible exception of those that are poisonous or at least will cause delirium or hallucinations.  And this is where man comes in.

Almost instinctively, newborns seek out food and know what to eat.  For man, infants depend on mother’s milk for initial sustenance but eventually starts to “experiment” — when we, as babes and toddlers, begin to put things in our mouths.  It is an early effort to determine what is edible and what is not.

Inherently, we knew that our food is to be taken from our surroundings and food does not need heating in order to be edible.  It is when we grew up, unduly influenced by society (principally by relatives and kinfolk first then by business, mostly restaurants and those in the food industry and aided ably by the medical profession) that we learned — and eventually mistakenly believed — that raw food is bad for us so we obligingly cooked (and even nuke and zap them in the microwave oven) our food, making them difficult to digest and became the primary source of our health and medical issues.

We only have to take a look at other creatures, mostly our fellow vertebrates especially our mammal cousins, who need no physicians and medical experts yet never seem to have any need for them — yet we eat much of the same food.  We eat plants like our herbivore relatives and meat like our carnivore relatives but we get these lifestyle diseases but they do not.  How strange and puzzling.  Moreover, we have human relatives who maintain a largely carnivorous dietary regimen yet they, likewise, do not succumb to lifestyle diseases.  What gives?

There is only one common factor linking our animal and human relatives who do not suffer the same fate as much of the rest of us — they do not heat (and even over-heat) their food.  [Btw, the carnivorous human kinfolk I am referring to are the Inuits or Eskimos and the Okinawans who still stick to their traditional diets and not those who have shifted to heating food like the rest of us.  They are virtually “immune” to our lifestyle diseases.]

And there you have it.  The secret is: It is not so much what food you eat but how that food is prepared and eaten that is at the root of our modern lifestyle diseases.

TaN: If it is not so, it should be — personal income should not…NEVER…be subjected to taxation.  To do so would mean double taxation, because there would be sales or value-added tax that would be built into the purchase price whenever a sale is made.

It would mean that the employee’s income is already taxed even before s/he receives it (first taxation) — because the employer deducts all necessary and government mandated financial obligations and taxes, respectively, during the payroll — and the same would (still) have to pay the sales tax built into the purchase by businesses (second taxation) of any good or service.  You would have to be absolutely so gullible and so naïve to think (and believe) that businesses will pay taxes from their income…from their profits.

Hello!  Wake up.  What do you think the value-added tax is?  It is a consumer tax, plain and simple and no bones about it; it is a tax paid by the consumer on the value added to the good or commodity or service being sold or purchased.

In other words, it is still the consumer who pays the tax and not the business.  It is even so dubiously clever to disguise it — i.e., the value-added tax or VAT — as a tax that CAN (not must nor should) absorb or pay instead of the consumer.

In other words, the vendor has the option or capability to absorb or to pay the sales tax for the consumer but, honestly, how many businesses are so conscientious and so concerned with the consumers’ welfare and interest as to be so generous as to pay the tax for their consumers?  Puh-leeeease!  Give me a break!

But I digress.  Returning to topic…permitting the laborer to receive his/her full pay means that the consumer has more disposable income — notwithstanding incidental deductions as social security/retirement pension, health care, union and other dues, (outstanding) loan payments, and other regular or periodic obligations.

A larger disposable income translates to more spending which fuels the economy — much more than the combined spending of all the wealthy members of society.  It can largely be attributed to the continued concentration of wealth to a diminishing group of wealthy and ultra rich individuals and families.

In an article in the Washington Post titled “Where the poor and rich really spend their money“, it reported that not only do the rich spend quantitatively less than the poor but the former further — please refer to https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/04/14/where-the-poor-and-rich-spend-really-spend-their-money/.  To quote, “… The rich save more than the poor, and the more they have, they more they’ll save. Money that’s being saved isn’t being spent, which means less business for everyone from the dry cleaner on the corner to the owner of a five-star hotel. In turn, that means less work for everybody and a lethargic economy.”

Since people, regardless of whether they are rich or poor have the same basic needs (i.e., food, shelter, clothing, transportation, utilities, the like), the affluent spends a smaller percentage of their income and this means they save quantitatively more.  This larger savings means more and more wealth are not circulating which would have otherwise added to economic growth.

To totally do away with personal income tax would result in more spending by the greater majority which will stimulate greatly the economy.  It is like ants and lions competing over the carcass of an elephant — the lions may have a larger bite but will not be able to consume the elephant in one meal whereas the ants can pick it to the bones if left alone.

In other words, quality trumps quantity only up to a certain point.  Thereafter, quantity takes over.  So it is far better for the overall economy to leave personal income tax intact.  The poor may spend much less than the rich individually but, collectively, the latter is no match against the former.

TaN: It is still unethical to manufacture (and sell) counterfeit products even if the proprietary products are or have been proven (conclusively) to not only be inferior but even harmful to human health or detrimental to society or the environment.

It is not so much that the counterfeit is better but that it is producing fake products.  The manufacturer (and seller/s) of the “better” product can always do it under its own proprietary label or brand name.

The counterfeit is capitalizing on the publicity or reputation of the original or proprietary product instead of spending for its own marketing campaign.  In fact, it is the unauthorized capitalization of/on the work put into by the original that is a principal reason for it being unethical — to gain from the effort done by others.

Although there can be another issue regarding the pricing difference — in most cases — between the original and the counterfeit.  In other words, why does the original cost so much more than the counterfeit?  It cannot be all in the cost of marketing and image or reputation building — because, if this were true, the original product will have unethical issues too.

It must remembered that one of or the main reason behind the development and manufacture (and marketing) of an original product is for the public good.  It is not unreasonable to make a profit but the profit or mark up should not be more than what it takes the business to stay viable and operational plus a little for the “trouble” of developing it.  In addition, it is likewise the reason for a patent (or monopoly) period in order to incentivize or encourage the development of the said original product.

It is a totally different issue if and when the profit or mark up is so substantial that it is no longer (just) about providing a benefit for the consumer but has become clear that the motive for development is purely commercial or for self-interest — and the public is merely being made a patsy or source of profit.

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