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INCOME RECEIVED BUT NOT EARNED: Abbreviate IRBNE, this is income received by the household sector, but not earned by a factor of production. The three types of income received but not earned are Social Security payments, unemployment compensation payments, and welfare payments. These are also the three key transfer payments from the government sector to the household sector. The basic goal of transfer payments is to transfer a portion of the income earned by the factors of production (because they HAVE income) to other members of the household sector (who presumably NEED more income than they have). IRBNE is added to national income to derive personal income.

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ABSTRACTION: Simplifying the complexities of the real world by ignoring (hopefully) unimportant details while doing economic analysis. Abstraction is often criticized because it's, well, it's JUST NOT REALISTIC. However, when done correctly (ignoring things that JUST DON'T MATTER), then the pursuit of knowledge is greatly enhanced by abstraction. For example, when travelling cross country along a high-speed interstate highway, a paper road map is a handy tool. It shows towns and cities along the way, the major intersections, rest stop locations, and other important points of interest. However, it ignores unimportant details. It doesn't realistically show the location of every tree, bush, or blade of grass. Why bother? This information won't enhance your road trip.

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REGRESSIVE TAX

A tax in which the proportion of income paid in taxes is smaller for higher income levels. A regressive income tax exists if taxpayers with more income pay a lower tax rate relative to income as income increases. A regressive tax is one of three alternations. The other two are progressive tax, in which the proportion of income paid in taxes is greater for higher income levels, and proportional tax, in which the proportion of income paid in taxes is the same for all income levels.

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Today, you are likely to spend a great deal of time browsing through a long list of dot com websites seeking to buy either a microwave over that won't burn your popcorn or a T-shirt commemorating the first day of winter. Be on the lookout for florescent light bulbs that hum folk songs from the sixties.
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The standard "debt" notation I.O.U. does not mean "I owe you," but actually stands for "I owe unto..."
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-- Norman Cousins, editor

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