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The Rich Don't Pay Enough?
Townhall.com ^ | August 29, 2012 | Walter E. Williams

Posted on 08/29/2012 10:56:14 AM PDT by Kaslin

If you listen to America's political hacks, mainstream media talking heads and their socialist allies, you can't help but reach the conclusion that the nation's tax burden is borne by the poor and middleclass while the rich get off scot-free.

Stephen Moore, senior economics writer for The Wall Street Journal, and I'm proud to say former GMU economics student, wrote "The U.S. Tax System: Who Really Pays?" in the Manhattan Institute's Issue 2012 (8/12). Let's see whether the rich are paying their "fair" share.

According to IRS 2007 data, the richest 1 percent of Americans earned 22 percent of national personal income but paid 40 percent of all personal income taxes. The top 5 percent earned 37 percent and paid 61 percent of personal income tax. The top 10 percent earned 48 percent and paid 71 percent of all personal income taxes. The bottom 50 percent earned 12 percent of personal income but paid just 3 percent of income tax revenues.

Some argue that these observations are misleading because there are other federal taxes the bottom 50 percenters pay such as Social Security and excise taxes. Moore presents data from the Tax Policy Center, run by the liberal Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution, that takes into account payroll and income taxes paid by different income groups. Because of the earned income tax credit, most of America's poor pay little or nothing. What the Tax Policy Center calls working class pay 3 percent of all federal taxes, middle class 11 percent, upper middle class 19 percent and wealthy 67 percent.

President Obama and the Democratic Party harp about tax fairness. Here's my fairness question to you: What standard of fairness dictates that the top 10 percent of income earners pay 71 percent of the federal income tax burden while 47 percent of Americans pay absolutely nothing?

President Obama and his political allies are fully aware of IRS data that shows who pays what. Their tax demagoguery knowingly exploits American ignorance about taxes. A complicit news media is only happy to assist. We might ask ourselves what's to be said about the decency of people who knowingly mislead the public about taxes. Of course, I might be all wrong, and true tax fairness dictates that the top 10 percent pay all federal income taxes.

Aside from the fairness issue, 47 percent of taxpayers having no federal income tax liability is dangerous for our nation. These people become natural constituents for big-spending, budget-wrecking, debt-creating politicians. After all, if you have no income tax liability, what do you care about either raising or lowering taxes? That might explain why the so-called Bush tax cuts were not more popular. If you're not paying income taxes, why should you be happy about an income tax cut? Instead, you might view tax cuts as a threat to various handout programs that nearly 50 percent of Americans enjoy.

Tax demagoguery is useful for politicians who prey on the politics of envy to get re-elected, but is it good for Americans? We're witnessing the disastrous effects of massive spending in Greece, Italy, Ireland, Portugal and other European countries where a greater number of people live off of government welfare programs than pay taxes. Government debt in Greece is 160 percent of gross domestic product, 120 percent in Italy, 104 in Ireland and 106 in Portugal.

Here's the question for us: Is the U.S. moving toward or away from the troubled EU nations? It turns out that our national debt to GDP ratio in the 1970s was 35 percent; now it's 106 percent of GDP. If you think we're immune from the economic chaos in some of the EU countries, you're whistling Dixie. And when economic chaos comes, whom do you think will be more affected by it: rich people or poor people?


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: 1percent; 2012; bhofascism; bushtaxcuts; campaign2012; democrats; federalincometax; obama; redistribution; socialistdemocrats; spreadthewealth; stealthewealth; taxes; taxtherich; walterewilliams; walterwilliams; williams

1 posted on 08/29/2012 10:56:19 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

We don’t need to have the rich paying higher taxes. They should be investing some of that capital in US domestic manufacturing production, though.


2 posted on 08/29/2012 11:01:02 AM PDT by familyop ("Wanna cigarette? You're never too young to start." --Deacon, "Waterworld")
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To: Kaslin

“President Obama and his political allies are fully aware of IRS data that shows who pays what. Their tax demagoguery knowingly exploits American ignorance about taxes. A complicit news media is only happy to assist.”

“Every movement that seeks to enslave a country, every dictatorship or potential dictatorship, needs some minority group as a scapegoat which it can blame for the nation’s troubles and use as a justification of its own demands for dictatorial powers. In Soviet Russia, the scapegoat was the bourgeoisie; in Nazi Germany, it was the Jewish people; in America, it is the businessmen.” A. Rand


3 posted on 08/29/2012 11:05:10 AM PDT by SMARTY ("The man who has no inner-life is a slave to his surroundings. "Henri Frederic Amiel)
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To: familyop
We don’t need to have the rich paying higher taxes. They should be investing some of that capital in US domestic manufacturing production, though.

Socialist politicians want that money to be invested in government.

Communist politicians want ALL their riches invested in government.

4 posted on 08/29/2012 11:06:56 AM PDT by EGPWS (Trust in God, question everyone else)
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To: Kaslin

I heard El Rushbo say(at 1:00pm EDT),that Democrats LOVE poor people so much they create more and more of them EVERY year!At least part of it’s true!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


5 posted on 08/29/2012 11:07:28 AM PDT by bandleader
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To: SMARTY

WELL SAID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


6 posted on 08/29/2012 11:08:50 AM PDT by bandleader
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7 posted on 08/29/2012 11:13:51 AM PDT by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro is a Kenyan communist)
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To: Kaslin

Taxes have to be zero for the jobs to come back. Apparently.


8 posted on 08/29/2012 11:13:55 AM PDT by Wolfie
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To: Kaslin

Watching the actions of the government now, is like watching Atlas Shrugged, while dancing to the symphony of destruction, with a fiddle solo by Nero.


9 posted on 08/29/2012 11:20:01 AM PDT by factoryrat (We are the producers, the creators. Grow it, mine it, build it.)
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To: Wolfie

Not zero, just less that the current rate for the top 50% who carry almost all of the burden. The bottom 50% need to have some stake in their country and right now they just don’t. It really should be mandatory for every worker to pay some federal income tax, and that would pay for tax cuts for the rest who can get on with creating jobs.


10 posted on 08/29/2012 11:23:55 AM PDT by rudabaga
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To: Kaslin

This is WAAAAY to complicated for the sheeple to understand. The logic goes beyond one step to three... top X% earn Y% of all the money and pay Z% of all the taxes.

Besides, sheeple don’t read the WSJ, don’t care who pays so long as they don’t pay and they only receive.

Anybody who tries to explain the facts is only P....ing into the wind and will just get wet.


11 posted on 08/29/2012 11:45:59 AM PDT by Sequoyah101 (Half the people are below average, they voted for oblabla.)
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To: rudabaga

How about we all just pay the same rate after a cost of living deduction that is indexed for inflation?

How about if you don’t pay anything you don’t get a vote like it was supposed to be from the beginning?

I’d say some posing here wouldn’t have a vote.


12 posted on 08/29/2012 11:57:49 AM PDT by Sequoyah101 (Half the people are below average, they voted for oblabla.)
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To: rudabaga

Well, ok, but how much can you take from someone making, say 25 to 40K a year to give the top 50% another tax break? Can you get enough to break even?


13 posted on 08/29/2012 12:23:43 PM PDT by Wolfie
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To: Wolfie

Well ok, how about removing 10 million or more illegals from the labor pool and creating a little price tension in the low wage earner’s job market?

Fact is, the rich pay too much in taxes but wages are lower now in real dollars than they have been for almost a century.

Low wage earners have a vote and should use it to improve the labor market by getting rid of illegals. It would help us all in the long run.


14 posted on 08/29/2012 12:34:35 PM PDT by Sequoyah101 (Half the people are below average, they voted for oblabla.)
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To: Sequoyah101

That would certainly help. But as I just said on another thread, people are just going to have to come to terms with the reality that we are operating in a global economy. Wages have to go down some for average workers. We have to compete and that is a hard reality American workers need to understand. We have to get rid of unions and illegals. At the same time, you cannot simply make up for it by raising taxes on the top income bracket because they will just leave eventually and/or park the money offshore. We see that happening now. As for someone making 25-35k a year, they can afford to put a little into the pot and forgo the big screen tv. I am torn on the flat tax though. I do think we could keep a progressive system in place but the lower 50% have to take part and we have to get the rates down for businesses and frankly, stop taxing capital gains at all. Taxes were already paid on that money. If we did that and privatized Medicare and SS we would positioned to cpete and keep business here.


15 posted on 08/29/2012 12:55:23 PM PDT by rudabaga
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To: rudabaga

So, what is right about a progressive tax? Why penalize success? What about all that democracy and equality stuff?

As a nation, we are slaves to the tax code and it is the spoils tool of the politicians used to curry favor, show favoritism and punish rivals or threats.

Why a progressive tax? Who has the right to say that you or anyone else has earned more than his “fair” share and needs to have it confiscated out of proportion to his earnings? Do the successful get more benefits, use more of the roads or get better defense in disproportion to their earnings? If they pay for these things in disproportion why isn’t it “fair” for them to get more or a better deal?

True, we are part of the world economy but we are also not competing on level ground. Again, tariffs are the tools of politicians but in this case on a world stage.

If we are to truly be a part of the world economy we need to have a standard of living like the rest of the world that we compete in. Their labor can’t afford what ours does. Their dependents of the state not only don’t have what ours do, they have nothing and they die. World competition demands that you either lower the standards here, compete and produce more value per worker. The only other choice is wealth transference which will ultimately lower the standards here as well.

I have said that the wages in this country are too low and that corporations and the rich are keeping too much and it is because there are easy alternatives to cheap labor many of which are facilitated or even encouraged by the government. Those should be removed.


16 posted on 08/29/2012 1:10:06 PM PDT by Sequoyah101 (Half the people are below average, they voted for oblabla.)
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To: Kaslin
the top 10 percent of income earners pay 71 percent of the federal income tax

The Libs want the top 98% to pay 150% of the federal taxes!!

17 posted on 08/29/2012 1:16:45 PM PDT by ExCTCitizen (Yes, Obama, I had help with my business. MY CUSTOMERS!)
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To: Kaslin

What standard of fairness dictates that the top 10 percent of income earners pay 71 percent of the federal income tax burden while 47 percent of Americans pay absolutely nothing?

I would love to know the percentage that pays less than nothing. The people who, because of EITC and such, get substantially more back than paid in


18 posted on 08/29/2012 1:56:39 PM PDT by Figment
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To: Kaslin

Here in Wisconsin we have Tammy Baldwin, the Dem candidate for the senate vacated by Herb Kohl, assert on her commercials that she’s going to make the rich “pay their fair share.” My wife doesn’t understand why I get so upset and threaten to thrown a brick through the tv when her ads come on. So now we just mute it when she starts blathering. Tammy Baldwin...not my wife. My wife can’t stand her either. Did I mention Baldwin’s the congresswoman from Madison? Need I say more?


19 posted on 08/29/2012 2:29:53 PM PDT by driftless2
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To: driftless2

I always mute the rats when they are on TV, whether it’s a politician or a pundit. I am not interested in what they are saying, so why should I listen to them. Perhaps not everyone feels that way, but I do


20 posted on 08/29/2012 2:50:24 PM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
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To: Sequoyah101

Heck, that one’s simple. Jail employers, confiscate their assets. Won’t take long before the people with something to lose wise up and hire citizens instead of illegals. W-A-Y easier than chasing 10 million illegals around, deporting them, and then having them cross back over the border to get a job again.


21 posted on 08/29/2012 2:54:06 PM PDT by Wolfie
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