Re: Why enright, slick, jaros, etc are wrong on the child support/alimony angle......

Charles Beauchamp wrote:
stephenj wrote:

So far all you have done is affirm that you generated this moral view out of your own mind. Nothing more then your own opinion. Not that there is anything peculiar to that. Just admit it up front.

WTF? Of course it's my opinion. Do you think we're talking mathematical proofs here? What have you offered but your interpretation of the bible, for crissakes?

Since meeting the basic needs is firstly in the eyes of
the beholder...

Yes, it would have to be determined based on local costs - but surely
we can come up with reasonable standards. The operative principle
being that all kids have the same basic needs - eg, Shaq's or Bill Gate's
child doesn't *need* any more health care or calories or clothing than
your kid does. Why? Because he actually doesn't! 2500 calories will
sustain your kid as well as Shaq's, etc.

Which is clearly necessary

"necessary"? That's *not* my opinion, it's a fact: Shaq's kid doesn't need any more calories than your kid does.

only if you accept the odd moral view that children should only be given support to meet basic needs and that the state has no compelling interest in anything more.

Sensible. Why on earth should the state be able to put Shaq in jail or confiscate his property because he chooses to clothe his kids from wal-mart and feed them at McDonalds? Talk about moral lunacy...

and secondly would have the result of only diminishing the
amount of support to the children of the more affluent I am not
speaking empty rhetoric you jackass.

Your talk of "impoverishment" was indeed empty rhetoric - glad you've
abandoned it.

It is certainly impoverishment given basic needs since basic needs can be met below the poverty line by every single adult in this country. Hence the "needs standard."

When we use the word "impoverishment" in common parlance, it implies *not* having your basic needs met - going hungry at night because there isn't enough food for dinner, going cold during the day because of inadequate clothes to keep the cold off your skin, suffering from diseases because you can't afford to go to the doctor and get treated, etc. That's how i'm using the word. Clear?

My definition - the one the state would mandate for the non-custodial parent - would rule that out. "Basic needs" would mean enough money for three square meals, clothes to keep warm, a non-leaky roof over the head, adequate health care. But just the basics, nothing beyond that.

Does this satisfy your "impoverishment" concern? It should.

Child support fails to meet the basic needs of most
of the children in this nation already.

If so, that's the fault of the current system, right?

Fault? No. It is the reality of economics and the idea that both parents should participate in the financial support of those children.

We both agree both parents should participate in the financial support of those children. Since my system would have a practical effect only on middle class and higher-income parents - who do have the money to meet their kids basic needs - that's not a problem for my system.

40% of kids in single parent homes
do not receive their mandated support as it is. The remaining 60%
reside primarily in the lower class for all kinds of obvious
reasons. So once again, simply asserting what you think is
societies compelling interest does not answer the why you think what
you think.

So once again, i've explained why i think society's compelling
interest is limited to making sure kids have the basics.

No you haven't. You have only asserted that you think it SHOULD be the limit of government. You have not one time given the why you think so other asserting the same thing repeatedly.

You're nuts, aren't you? I've stated the principle repeatedely: A parent should be given the widest possible discretion in raising their child. It's *their* child, after all. That possession, which is as far as we can tell a natural state of human affairs, means that the state should only intervene, should only compel the parent to do something they choose not to do, if the child's *needs* are not being met. Because if the child's needs aren't being met, that is evidence that, for whatever reason, the parent is unable or unwilling to provide the child with the protection it requires from outside world. In that case, the state has a compelling interest in preventing manifestations of that failure, such as children not going hungry, being properly clothed, getting an education, and not being physically abused. So the state is justified in intervening to prevent that from happening. Beyond that, it's none of our collective business how the parent chooses to raise the child. That's his/her parental prerogative.

As a taxpayer, i don't care, nor should i care, how you or Shaq raise your child, as long as you meet its basic needs.

Your failure to grasp

that isn't my fault. Gee - this is starting to sound like numerous
other exchanges where your limited thinking capacity has lead us into
a cul de sac. I should have known better...

You are a damned idiot Jaros.

My gosh. In how many different threads have i had to chastise you for your stupidity? To debunk your dumb arguments only to see you keep repeating them like a brainless golem programmed to regurgitate the spiel? This is getting really old...

Earth to Charles: CC is supposed to support the kids, not the
ex-spouse. He/she is supposed to either get alimony or take care of

Child Support is not designed to be limited to basic needs which you would change.

Correct. But it should be.

you really haven't made a compelling argument.
Keeping in mind that you are arguing with someone that actually pays
child support....

.. which probably explains your need to defend the current system in
the face of my clearly correct arguments - you have to comply with it
whether you like it or not, so you've convinced yourself it's a good

Wow. You posted a mouthful. The system that you are describing...would LOWER my support level you retard.

... but you know that system isn't likely to be changed, so there's no use making yourself feel bad about a system you're stuck with.

Why do I keep saying that the state fails to collect mandated support for 40% of children? Because the statistics I've read say as much.

But so what? That's a collection issue.

will try to dodge their payments. That's a collection issue, not a
payment-amount issue - though surely if a parent thinks the payment
amount is fair, they are more likely to pay if they can, right?

I know of no evidence to support that idea actually. It seems to me that in general no one paying child support thinks things are basically fair.

Didn't you just say it would be "evil" of you to dodge your payments? You must think they are fair, no .. ?

Just that some of us are grown ups and aren't compelled to whine about the "INJUSTICE OF IT ALL!!!"

You're stuck, or else you had a lousy lawyer..?

And probably most of those cases involve poor/working class dads who
struggle to meet the payments to begin with, even though they are low.

No doubt in most of those cases...which of course means that your idea of compelling non-custodial parents to meet the basic needs (my assumption when you say this is that you mean all basic needs consisting I suppose of a % of lodging, food, clothing) would result in dramatic increases in mandated child support to those parents. Increases that would actually result in fewer of them paying or being able to pay. As far as enforcement you can't squeeze water out of a rock.

Right. So obviously my system can't squeeze water from a rock, and wouldn't affect those parents. The judge would make them pay the maximum they could afford to pay, given their job, circumstances, etc.

So no, my system wouldn't result in fewer payments from low-income dads. Wouldn't affect that at all. It might affect how much the state has to come up with to make up the difference.

That doesn't impact much on my system, since it applies mostly to
middle-class and above cases, where "ability to pay" isn't as much an
issue, and where if the dad refuses to pay he's easier to track down
and compel payment from via wage garnishment, seizure of assets,
etc.. So please discard the red herring.

Oddly enough no one has made the argument regarding inability to pay effecting the middle class and above parents.

Then why keep mentioning the 40% that applies mostly to lower-income parents? That's not a practical issue here.

Further, the basic needs are not covered by child support
for the overwhelming majority of kids.

They most certainly should be - that's a key aim of my system. It's
based on the notion that every kid is entitles to a basic level of
support, and the parents are responsible for providing it.

I absolutely agree that the responsibility is to the parents of the kids. That said, lower income parents..ability to pay is the problem.

Sure. And that's why some kind of social-welfare programs are needed by the state - to bring kids up to a basic-needs level when their parents can't.

And that's one reason why the "rest of us", the state, the taxpayer, has a compelling interest *only* in making sure the basic needs are met - because if they are, we don't have to do it, but if they aren't, we do.

Upper income parents...basic needs results in lowering child support payments to the detriment of those children.

Yes, it would result in lowering support payments - because of the principle that parents should only be responsible for basic needs. Beyond that, the state has no business in intruding on their discretion.

Hey, i personally would think it would be pretty shitty behavior if Shaq never bought his kids fancy toys, never bought them gucci clothes but only stuff from wal-mart, never let them eat out anywhere but at fast-food joints and never at expensive restaraunts, etc. I'd say "wow, Shaq has all that cash but he doesn't let his kids live in luxury? I wouldn't do that to my kids".

But, why should my moral irkedness translate into getting the justice system to compel shaq, on pain of jail, to do any of that? Obviously i have no compelling interest in the matter. So long as his kids have the basics met, who am i to question his parenting, other than in a purely verbal manner?

Or who are you to do so?

You haven't really defined what that

I can't define it nationally, since costs vary from locale to locale.
Each state, and perhaps regions of larger states, would make that

You most certainly can give a basic guideline for what basic needs should be. Then calculate costs by locale. And how do you account for when the custodial parent moves the children from a lower cost area to a higher cost area under your system? Would that require increased support to continue to meet those basic needs? Just wondering on the details.

I've given basic guidelines: government-established nutritional needs are met, clothes are functional, education is provided, housing that provides basic protection from the elements (cool in summer, warm in winter) and isn't unhealthily cramped or subject to health hazards (dangerous construction, vermin infestation, etc.). Why quibble about the obvious? Oh that's right, you have no other arguments to make.

I have this crazy idea that goes something like this. You don't
divorce kids.

So far, your ideas have been pretty nutty.

My ideas are not nutty.

Peanuts and Macadamia Nuts. 100% nuts. Based on nothing but ... what? Your weird biblical interpretations?

The rightness comes from the idea that your child is entitled
inherently to a share of whatever you are earning. Not just generic
diapers, Goodwill clothing and a shack if you have the means to
generate much more then that.

And where does that right inhere? Why is your child entitled to more
than basic care? What business of the state is that?

Because it has been recognized since the Old Testament times

Earth to Charles: that begs the question.

that children have a birth right to the wealth of their parents.

That's silly. If Shaq and his wife are happily married, but choose to not "share their wealth" with their kids and instead of living in luxury decide to live, say, a lower-middle-class existence by living in a small house, buying clothes from wal-mart, eat at McD's, etc. *But*, the kids are not being abused, and their basic needs are met such that Social Services couldn't document any lack of food, clothing, etc. should the kids have the right to get a lawyer and sue them for their "share of the wealth"? You'd be nuts to suggest that, but that's what you're arguing for.

Pretty simple. Just as the idea of welfare comes from a command in the Bible to care for the widows and fatherless children.

Right- basic needs. Not luxury. Stop misquoting the bible.

If you make $20 million a year, but choose to house your kids in a
$600 a month apartment, buy them clothes from Wal-Mart, and not buy them a
car when they turn 16, not buy them the Ipods and Xbox that other kids
have, what business of that is mine? None at all, as long as they are
fed, clothed, housed, educated at a basic level and aren't abused.

It isn't business of yours' at all. Which has nothing at all to do with anything.

Actually, it's the whole ballgame, Charles. If that's none of my business, then how on earth can the state legitimately compel you to pay more than what would provide for that level of support when you get divorced?

But it is the right by birth of my children to have a percentage of what I earn.

What does that mean? Does that mean that in the above example your kids should be able to sue you for the money they want to buy the big house, the Ipods and Xboxs, the luxury car, etc.?

Can't, nationally. But the operative principle is that *all kids* have
the same basic needs.

I can agree with that.

Then why on earth are you arguing against my system, which is based precisely on that principle?

I just see the reality that some kids will not by economic reality have those needs met.

Yes - some parents can't afford to pay. But that's true under my *and* the existing system, so it's a null point here.

Further you haven't stated why parents
should not be compelled to provide the share of wealth that their
children should be rightly entitled to.

er, that begs the question. What "wealth" are kids rightly entitled
to? That is, what wealth is it the rest of our business to make sure
you share with your kids, if you've met their basic needs, i.e., the same
needs all kids have? You haven't stated why kids are owed more than

Birth right.

But didn't you agree that if you made $20 mill a year but chose to spend say just a thousand or so a month on your kids (eat at McD, clothes from wal-mart, live in a $600 apartment, etc. - adequate coverage of the basics but nothing else) that it would be none of my and the state's business?

The same reason why inheritence should not be taxed. Because wealth I generate is inherently the property of my loved ones when I die...and the state has no right to take a share of that just because I have passed into eternity.

What if you want to set aside just enough to pay for your kids basic-needs support until they reach 18, and donate the other 99% (millions) to charity? The state doesn't and shouldn't allow that ...?

Essentially you are stating that a
millionair who divorces and does not get custody should only pay
minimum child support and then be legally allowed to ignore their
children and would be required to do nothing more for them while
living in luxury.

Should only be compelled to pay that by the state. What's wrong with
that, other than it somehow irks you?

Because it is evil by definition.

Sweet Jeebus...

The present system sucks

It sucks, but it would be evil of you to dodge it ... ?

Since when does my proposal involve "volunteering up the cash" for the
basics? That would be compelled. And since if the basics are met the
kid isn't impoverished, you are sounding loony...

I had assumed that you think parents "should" on their own provide beyond he basics that they are compelled by law to provide. Sorry I was wrong about you.

What? My system compels parents to pay the basics, but everything above that is their discretion.

If you really think the state should be able to compel a parent to
provide more than that, then why not compel parents who are living
together to do the same, as per my TV vs. better schooling example?

Because that is silly and the courts do not compel anyone to do
either under the current system. So what does that have to do with
how much money your kids should be getting from you if your wife
decides that you are no longer fit to be her husband?

That didn't answer my question.

It completely answered your question. You asked why not compel parents who are living together to do the same...etc. And I stated the obvious answer being that this has nothing at all to do with anything under the current system. The current system does not make a determination of either of those things.

Complete dodge of the question. The question is: given your claims about what the state should be able to compel a divorced parent to pay (far above the minimum basics, kids are "entitled to a % of the wealth", etc.), why shouldn't the state be able to compel the same from parents living together?

"when i visited Aden before collectivization,
all the markets were full of fish product. After
collectivization, the fish immediately disappeared."

- Aleksandr Vassiliev, Soviet KGB official