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They have promised to help me.

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The man speaking is Brian Donnelly. Those are the primary parts of it. If you own a house, every one or two years, typically, the value of your property is reassessed by the city or county where you live. So, if your house doubles in value, the local government will raise your taxes accordingly. In other words, California has two kinds of taxpayers: Please understand this system is insane. I mean, just think of all the reasons why someone might deserve a big tax break.

Gift from God number one. Then comes Proposition 13, and you get a second gift from God because Proposition 13 says that those already artificially low property taxes are now frozen forever at levels so long as your country club does not change hands. So the country clubs of Los Angeles all hang by a thread. They continue to exist only so long as the tax system perceives that they have not changed hands. When you die or quit, someone else takes your share.

Yeah, I think the quote was kind of funny from him. Did you find that argument plausible?

We are implementers of the law. I could swear, as I looked across the table at Donnelly and his cohorts, that they were twitching, like they desperately wanted to say something but had to bite their tongue. Plutarch says imagine Theseus is sailing on a ship and, one by one, he replaces every one of the original planks that make up that ship with a new plank until every single piece of the ship is new.

The question is, when Theseus reaches shore, is he sailing on the same ship as he was when he left or a new ship? This is called the Mereological Theory of Identity.


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The identity of something is the sum of its component parts; change the parts, you change the thing. On the other side of the argument is something called Spatiotemporal Continuity Theory, which says that an object can maintain its identity so long as the change is gradual and the form or shape of the object is preserved to the changes of its component materials. Collections of rich, white guys, from the standpoint of the LA County property tax system, possess spatiotemporal continuity.

At this point, I realized I was in way over my head. Tax assessors were not going to be enough. I needed an actual philosopher. So I called Marc Cohen of the University of Washington to get to the bottom of the question of whether large groups of rich, white people possess ontological permanence. The idea that what makes the, the ship persist through time is one and the same, is that it moves smoothly through space-time. One plank is removed and thrown overboard and a replacement plank is installed, taken from the cargo the ship has on board.

Now we have a new ship. A different, a numerically different ship. Forget about requiring that all the parts are the same. But Cohen is not finished. As a philosopher, his job is to consider all the scenarios raised by the ship of Theseus conundrum.

Olympic Games a Mere Memory, Rio’s Olympic Golf Course at a Crossroads

Like the museum counter example. The museum example goes like this: So they come up with a clever scheme. Now they reassemble them and put it on the black market. But do you see what the lawyers at the LA Board of Equalization did? The problem, as it stands, is irresolvable and you only come to a conclusion that makes any sense to you if you place it in a, in a context in which there is something sort of extra metaphysical, something pragmatic, that helps… That tilts you in one direction or the other.

Do you want to know the size of that subsidy? But that was a couple years ago. Do you know what LA Country Club actually paid after you add up the Bob Hope exemption and spatiotemporal continuity ruling? Well, and I wanted to bring up something else that comes to mind here, which is that the spatiotemporal argument, taken out of the philosophical context, strikes me as being… Can sometimes be really troubling.

That, you know, that we get the fact that we call the Hudson River the Hudson River even though the Hudson River is, at every second, changing. Boats go down it, you know, it never… It never look the same way twice ever, but we continue to call it the Hudson River. But it strikes me that, in, in a political context, this kind of thinking can be used to perpetuate inequality and injustice. For example, what is the… What is an aristocracy but a political formulation of the spatiotemporal continuity principle, right? It is something like that.


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  • I just binge-read eight books by Donald Trump. Here’s what I learned. - The Washington Post.

He is reluctant to admit mistakes, for instance. When he does, he usually says he miscalculated how awful other people would be. Finally, he struggles to delegate. As president, he would appoint himself U. Yes, Trump has a pretty serious savior complex, a common affliction for presidential hopefuls. Either way, his rivals should brace themselves.

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But to actually be president, day to day? Trump has always been about the next big thing, whether the next deal, spouse or fight. Read more from Book Party , including: Millennials see the GOP as old-fashioned and prejudiced. The case for conservative civil disobedience. Why we may never have a millennial president. We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.

I just binge-read eight books by Donald Trump. From memoirs to financial advice to politics, inside the collected writings of Donald J.

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Here's his take on Obamacare, building a border wall, and more, in his own words. People and groups Donald Trump has denounced. Not one to back down easily from controversial statements, the Republican presidential candidate continues to add to the list of people he condemns. He received the National Book Critics Circle's citation for excellence in reviewing and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for criticism in Players raved about the course during the Olympics.

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From memoirs to financial advice to politics, inside the collected writings of Donald J. Trump.

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