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Patriotic Millionaires for Fiscal Strength

This article was written by in Taxes. 51 comments.


A group of millionaires — the definition of which is any individual with an annual income of over $1,000,000, not a net worth of $1,000,000 — has assembled to let the government know that they’d like the tax cuts for that income level expire, in patriotic duty to the fiscal solvency of the United States.

Less than 1% of all American taxpayers earn over $1,000,000. While a reversion structured like this wouldn’t affect many Americans, relatively speaking, it could go far to reduce the deficit. Use of the term “millionaire” is worrisome; many more people consider themselves millionaires than are reflected by this proposal. A small business owner, with an income of $300,000 a year, may have used that income to amass a nest egg and an expensive house or two, and may value their wealth at a value well over $1,000,000, but this is not who would be affected by this campaign.

Here is the organization‘s call to action:

We are writing to urge you to stand firm against those who would put politics ahead of their country.

For the fiscal health of our nation and the well-being of our fellow citizens, we ask that you allow tax cuts on incomes over $1,000,000 to expire at the end of this year as scheduled.

We make this request as loyal citizens who now or in the past earned an income of $1,000,000 per year or more.

We have done very well over the last several years. Now, during our nation’s moment of need, we are eager to do our fair share. We don’t need more tax cuts, and we understand that cutting our taxes will increase the deficit and the debt burden carried by other taxpayers. The country needs to meet its financial obligations in a just and responsible way.

Letting tax cuts for incomes over $1,000,000 expire, is an important step in that direction.

The often-cited argument for keeping lower tax rates for the rich is trickle-down economic theory, which has never worked as promised in American society. The theory says that if the rich can keep more of their money, they will stimulate the economy by hiring workers for their own companies and investing in other businesses.

That’s not what happens, though, as we’ve seen over the past few years. Companies build up their cash reserves. Again, in theory, this would be a good thing as it allows banks to increase the money supply by lending out more than they’ve accepted in deposits. If the banks aren’t lending to businesses and the middle class, with risk aversion swinging too far to the conservative side, all those tax cuts don’t trickle down anywhere.

It looks like Democrats and Republicans are ready to compromise and extend at least part of the Bush era tax cuts. What do you think of the proposal to allow tax cuts to expire for those earning over $1,000,000 a year?

Published or updated November 19, 2010. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 51 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Investor Junkie

Wasn’t this group exposed they they didn’t “earn” their income? That the people who are in this group aren’t first generation wealthy. They were trust fund babies and most inherited their wealth. So perhaps they feel guilty with their wealth. Nothing is stopping them from paying more taxes. It’s a crock that the government spends our taxes effectively. The government will take more of our tax dollars and waste it. Using it for deficit reduction is a crock.

Here’s a unique concept, stop spending!

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avatar Ron

Big hat, no cattle. It’s all for show. The amount of money it would alter going into the hands of the spendthrifts in Congress is less than the amount we spent bailing out AIG.

The problem isn’t income to the Treasury, the problem is the outflow.

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avatar Peter

Agreed completely. We have a spending problem, not a “taxed too little” problem. Time to change the focus of the discussion.

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avatar Apex

As a matter of accuracy the current tax code has the cheapest rates code since WWII (caveat there were a few years after Reagan where the top rate was slightly lower ,28 or 31 depending on if you count the donut, the but the lower rates where higher, the credits were less, the cap gains were more, etc, on the whole it’s much cheaper now for almost all tax payers). The amount of the GDP that is collected by the federal government is currently at around 15%, the lowest level since WWII. From WWII up until very recently it was around 20-22%. After the Bush tax cuts it dropped to about 17-18% and the recession dropped it to about 15%.

We certainly have a big spending problem. But as much as the tea party and the GOP wants to argue that we are taxed enough already, it’s just not accurate with respect to where taxes used to be.

Disclosure: I am a GOP voter and support the general effort of the TEA party. I just prefer facts to loyalty based on group affiliation.

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avatar Investor Junkie

The problem is no matter what rate we get taxed the amount to GDP is always around 18-20%.

http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxfacts/displayafact.cfm?Docid=205

The government wants 25%+ GDP and it’s not going to happen. People will adjust according. The only option logically is cut spending.

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avatar jim

You say taxes are 18-20% of GDP then you give a link to a page saying that its currently 14.8% of GDP.

Who says the government wants 25%+ of GDP?

avatar Investor Junkie

@jim: Currently 14.8% GDP yes. Last time I checked didn’t we have some sort of recession going or something? I’m referring to the average over time.

Government has increased in size to 25% of GDP (I don’t have a page for that but seen that number a few times). If they are to properly cover the costs, taxes must also increase accordingly right? Otherwise we are always in a hole.

avatar Investor Junkie

@jim: Here are some comments from Volcker. Granted it’s on Breibart.tv so take it as you want granted Volcker did state it.

http://www.breitbart.tv/volcker-revelation-stiff-new-tax-needed-to-cover-obama-spending-at-25-of-gdp/

avatar Apex

A couple things about the chart you posted.

1. It proves my point. Receipts as a percent of GDP went up all throughout the 90′s even after Clinton raised taxes. The laffer curve theory failed based on the numbers you posted.

Even more importantly, the total numbers are drastically skewed by the off-budget items which are the FICA taxes for the most part.

All the discussions about tax increases are for income taxes. So what do the income tax numbers look like on your table:

9% when Reagan started, quick drop to 8% by 1984 and then held steady until he he left office. The Reagan tax cuts decreased the amount of money that was brought into the treasury from income tax as a percent of GDP. -1 for the laffer curve.

7.7% when Clinton started, steady yearly increase to 10.2% when Clinton left. The Clinton tax increases increased the amount of money that was brought into the treasury from income tax as a percent of GDP. -2 for the laffer curve.

10.2% when Bush took office, steady decline to 7.9% when Bush left office. The Bush tax cuts decreased the amount of money that was brought into the treasury from income taxes. -3 laffer curve.

The laffer curve is indeed a laugher.

Our income taxes are lower than they have been in decades and the argument that raising taxes will cause people to find ways to avoid paying taxes and keep their tax bill the same is proven false by the exact chart you post.

Social security distorts the total numbers and if you are talking income tax adjustments you have to look at income taxes.

avatar Kyle

Well, this makes the supposition that taxes were at the “correct” level before. Just because taxes are lower than they used to be doesn’t mean they aren’t still too high now. Spending is 99% of the problem. It doesn’t really matter how much you raise taxes if you can’t spend what you’ve got wisely.

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avatar Investor Junkie

Let me add Flexo:
“The often-cited argument for keeping lower tax rates for the rich is trickle-down economic theory, which has never worked as promised in American society. The theory says that if the rich can keep more of their money, they will stimulate the economy by hiring workers for their own companies and investing in other businesses.”

Sure it has worked, it’s shown many times this has worked in history of this country and others. Hasn’t the “poor” in the USA are richer than the poor in many other countries.

“That’s not what happens, though, as we’ve seen over the past few years. Companies build up their cash reserves.” I call BS on this statement. They are acting rational. The reason companies are hording cash is uncertainty. Uncertainty in the economy, in taxes and in regulation. They are holding cash to and looking for good investments. None exist mainly because the Fed Funds rate is 0%.

Based upon your statements you are holding way too much cash (if you use your logic about businesses). According to my calculations 43% of your total net worth. We can call you greedy then right? Why aren’t you spending your money?? Who are we to force others (companies included) to spend their savings? Your logic does not add up.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,455 (Platinum)

As you know, I’m not an economist, and the debate about trickle-down economic theory is one of the most politicized economic arguments. Many economists believe that the theory works, many others believe it’s all BS. I’m just looking historically, on a macro scale, when supply-side economic strategies have been enacted, the chasm between classes increased, large businesses benefit, and the wealth does not trickle-down.

Some sources: NYT, WSJ, Stern School of Business, Financial Times. Other sources I’m sure say the opposite, so everyone gets to pick who they want to listen to.

I’m not criticizing those who hold onto their cash, I’m only criticizing those who predicted that businesses would not hold onto the cash when they were offered the opportunity to hold onto more of it. I didn’t say people should be forced to spend anything they don’t want to.

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avatar Investor Junkie

“I’m only criticizing those who predicted that businesses would not hold onto the cash when they were offered the opportunity to hold onto more of it.” Yes agreed. Who are the ones that stated this wouldn’t happen? The same ones who proposed the bailouts. The same economists (cough Krugman) who are proposing tax increases and QE2. The multiplier effect from govt spending was one big fat dud. We need to grow out of our issues, not spend and tax.

“I didn’t say people should be forced to spend anything they don’t want to.” I’m not saying you specifically, but what does a tax exactly do? Taxes are a means to affect behavior. To punish or reward people. Increasing the tax rates causes people to change behavior. To think for a minute that the tax increases won’t affect human behavior on the “rich” is delusional. I for example am taking more income this year than next. On purpose. Rich people have the means to legal affect their income and investments. It’s the middle class and poor that always get screwed with tax increases.

Google “the do no evil” company pays 2.5% taxes because of the various schemes in the tax code. Facebook is expected to do this same. Why? Because it’s rational. They are there to maximize the profit of their shareholders. While I don’t like this fact, if it’s legal under the current system, who can blame them? We all do what’s in our best self interest. It’s the nature of being human.

The saying is: Everyone else is greedy except you.

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avatar Kyle

Strictly speaking, It’s illogical to assume supply side strategies don’t work just because the chasm between classes happened to increase around the same time. There are billions of variables in that equation, many of which have far greater potential to affect the distribution of wealth than tax policy. Why focus on that one?

It’s quite possible, if not outright likely, that the rich got richer due to an unrelated boom of some sort and THEN supply-side policies were enacted right before the crash i.e. buying in at the top. As far as I know, supply side strategies have never been tried during the depths of a recession barring the 2001 Bush cuts. But it would be difficult to call those a failure in light of the robust recovery that began a year or so later. Hence, there’s no real data either way.

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avatar Apex

“While a reversion structured like this wouldn’t affect many Americans, relatively speaking, it could go far to reduce the deficit.”

While I do not believe that a small increase in taxes on the “rich” will have massive impacts on our economy the above statement is unfortunately just not accurate. Taxes probably do need to go up. But increasing taxes just on those above 250K or as in this proposal just those above 1 million will not do hardly anything.

The CBO and various other agencies have put out the estimates of what the proposed changes would do. Over the next 10 years we have projected deficit of more than 10 trillion dollars. The obama proposal to let the Bush tax cuts expire on just those over 250K will bring in about 700K over those 10 years. Let all the Bush tax cuts expire on all tax payers will bring in between 4-5 trillion.

Clearly 700K out of 10 trillion is not going far to reduce anything. It’s nearly meaningless. But the 4-5 trillion is a huge step. If raising taxes on the rich is patriotic then we all need to suck it up and be patriotic and roll back all the Bush tax cuts.

When Bush’s tax cuts were passed so many people cried about how they favored the rich. If you rolled back all the Bush tax cuts I could predict like I can predict the sun will come up tomorrow that there would be many cries about it hurting the poor and lower middle class far more than the rich. It is obvious by the numbers above that the Bush tax cuts gave most of their money to the middle class. And it’s the middle class that needs to give it back if we are going to get the budget deficit under control through taxation. Taxing the rich simply will not do it. I wish it would. Seems like an easy solution. Unfortunately as with many easy solutions, they do not work.

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avatar Apex

I need to make a correction. I said 700K above. Jeez that is horrible. I meant to say 700 billion. Even as I was typing 700K I thought I was typing 700 billion so all my statements about it remain unchanged. The difference between 700 billion and 10 trillion is 7% of the total and that is a nearly meaningless overall dent in the deficit.s

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avatar Investor Junkie

You had it right. The $700k is what they will end up with after people adjust their behaviors :-)

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avatar Apex

And we saw this in 1993-1999 with the Clinton tax increases right? People changed their behavior to earn less and taxes didn’t go up did they? Oops, I guess taxes did go up and produce the only surplus since WWII. I fully understand that dot.com excesses etc contributed to those surplus that weren’t entirely real. But its also the case that the laffer curve advocates say that we would get no tax benefit and would decrease economic growth with tax rates having raised from 28% to 39.6% (a far larger increase than is being discussed now).

We clearly did not have a decrease of economic growth in the 90s. We certainly did not have rich sitting on their money not investing it in the economy and taking risk. We certainly didn’t have people trying to not work and make less money to avoid taxes. People were running around consulting making as much money as possible. And after the Bush tax cuts we have still not stimulated the economy enough to return to the economic growth, risk taking, and income seeking of the 90s.

Again I repeat my disclosure above that I am a GOP voter and a conservative. I just prefer facts to repeating a mantra like the laffer curve that has no good evidence in modern history. Obviously tax rates going from 10% to 90% would have some laffer curve affect. Rates going from 35 to 39.6% is not likely to have much if any affect. Again the only recent comparable example is the Clinton increase from 28 to 39.6% and you cannot point to a single thing about the 90s that would support the theories of the laffer curve at that level of taxation.

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avatar Investor Junkie

Taxes received to GDP during the 90′s was about the average of 18%. (see previous link) Tax revenue did not increase past the average. Yes it could be argued that the 90′s stayed the same rate in spite of the tax increases because of the dot bomb and easy money. Even if this were true the government didn’t collect more revenue to GDP than normal. People adjusted accordingly.

You know as well as I do the surplus in the 90′s really was just a lie. Be it either taking away from SS and/or because of the dot bomb bubble.

We’ve amassed debt from the 90′s and still hung over from that period. The Keynesian policy from the 00′s did nothing to fix the issue and if anything put us in a deeper hole now. At what point do we say Keynesian policy does not work?

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avatar Apex

Not sure what I said that makes you think I support Keynesian easy money. I certainly do not. I think recessions are normal should be allowed to come and should not be made to end prematurely. The 2000 recession should have been deeper because of the excesses of the dot com era but we managed to shift the bubble to housing and thus this time we had to undo 2 bubbles worth of excesses and that is why this recession is so much worse.

My point is not about easy money. Keynesians want to spend our way out of every mess. However Friedman supporters want to tax cut our way out of every mess. I want to balance our way out of the mess.

Continuing to run huge deficits is the same as keynes easy money. It puts extra money in the economy and drives it beyond its natural state. That has been part of the contributory nature of the bubbles of the last 30 years. We need to stop all of that.

If you can put forward a plan that has a snowballs chance in hell of passing that strips the federal budget based on current tax receipts and gets us anywhere close to balance that would be great. I will sign up for that. However keep in mind I said it must have a chance to pass.

We need to balance the budget and be honest that drastic cuts in govt have never happened and thinking that it will magically happen now is a fairy tale. Taxes are lower now than they have been in quite some time and so we need a modest amount of both tax increases and spending cuts. There is no way the Democrats would ever go along with huge spending cuts and no tax increases. Taxes have to go up. I think most people realize this at some level. And the past numbers do not support the idea that modest tax increases are going to kill our economy.

If we want to defer the question a few years until the economy is strong that is appropriate. But to think that we are going to get no tax increases? That is just not very reasonable. France and Greece are finding out what that kind of stick your head in the sand thinking eventually leads to.

avatar eric ♦1,549 (Half-Dollar)

Even though it might not have a huge impact, I still think the tax cuts should be left to expire.

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avatar Apex

They will have a huge impact if they all expire. If only the ones on the rich expire they won’t have much impact. You might still think they should expire as a matter of fairness but it’s not for deficit reduction. I don’t think fairness is a good argument to do it. I am fine the the rich paying more but I want the bottom paying more too. The bottom of the tax code is not paying enough, many are paying nothing. That’s why its easy to keep spending more money, cause it doesn’t cost 50% of people anything for them to do it. Everyone should contribute something to the tax base. People who contribute nothing appreciate nothing and only want more. Sound like any group of people in this country? Yeah, the bottom of the tax code.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,455 (Platinum)

Saying the poor appreciate nothing and take advantage of the system is like saying the rich are greedy and… take advantage of the system. Some truth in both, and examples abound, but still a bad generalization.

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avatar Apex

You are right, its certainly not true of all. But it is true of enough of them that it’s a problem that has a common root.

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avatar Apex

BTW, I think a lot of rich are greedy. There are far more rich who treat people like dirt cause they can than there are non rich doing that. There are plenty of good rich people, but money and power releases people’s inner A-hole. There are plenty of psychological studies that show this type of mindset change happens very quickly with changes in status.

And free stuff especially from a non-personal third party, tends to release people’s inner entitlement attitude.

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avatar Dan

So, how many rich people do you know?

avatar Apex

Not enough for a scientific study but enough to form opinions.

I don’t consider myself rich yet but I am getting closer and hope to be in a category that I would consider rich some day. I hope to be humble and not behave like I have special status due to my money. However I know how easy it can be to be trapped by riches cause I have seen it. I expect I will do better than most but not as well as I would like.

Riches can easily corrupt. And keep in mind that I am one who seeks them. Most people who seek money or have it think that money will have no influence over them. They are wrong.

avatar Evan

I go back and forth on the trickle down argument, b/c even if you take it to its ultimate end, if the Millionaire is saving more he isn’t doing it under the mattress. He is putting it in our fractional reserve system, right?

Regardless the movement seems like PR BS. If those particular wealthy individuals want to provide more to the public debt…go for it:

http://www.treasurydirect.gov/govt/resources/faq/faq_publicdebt.htm

There is a link on that page that tells you how to donate money, but why force it upon everyone else?

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avatar Investor Junkie

Read the comments on WSJ “The Wealth Report” to see what rich people do with their money. Invest it in most cases. In some cases it is overseas because our country isn’t getting it.

http://blogs.wsj.com/wealth/2010/11/19/what-will-the-rich-do-with-their-tax-cuts/

Pardon me does anyone have some Grey Poupon?

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avatar Greenhaba

If these millionaires like how the government is spending their money they shouldn’t feel restricted to what they pay in taxes. They should give the government what they feel its worth. Why drag other people into paying for what they feel is reckless spending. Oh, I forgot these are the socialist elite that are smarter than everyone else.

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avatar Philip Taylor

Good info, Flexo. And a great debate starter. I have two points:

1. As for the millionaires who are making this request, we all know there are better, more efficient things that could be done with those funds. Talk about fools with their money. Might as well stick it in a barrel and burn it. Made for a great headline though.

2. It’s a mistake for those in the lower spending / lower taxes crowd to argue the trickle-down economics thing at this time. The argument should be taking place around wasteful govt spending. Not many on the left want to address that it seems. The House Dems just voted today in fact to keep funding for public radio and TV. Public radio! They still don’t get it. We want cuts!

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avatar Len Penzo

Flexo: You said, “I’m just looking historically, on a macro scale, when supply-side economic strategies have been enacted, the chasm between classes increased…”

I never understood the left’s “wealth gap” argument. I say it is a canard – a ruse. So what if the wealth gap widened? What, exactly, is so bad about the top end of our society making more money year over year? In a healthy economy, the wealth gap has no choice but to widen, since the poorest Americans naturally have nothing (relatively speaking) compared to the richest Americans.

For the same reason, it is impossible for the government to narrow the said wealth gap because they will be unable to give the poorest Americans enough money to make a difference. Sorry, but “narrowing the wealth gap” are just code words for “socialism” and “redistribution of wealth.”

What’s really important is our standard of living – and I’ll wager that up until recently, the standard of living for even the poorest Americans has been steadily rising in America.

Of course, the cost of running our massive government bureaucracy and all of its entitlement programs is starting to, sadly, finally turn that around.

Best,

Len
Len Penzo dot Com

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,455 (Platinum)

“Redistribution of wealth” is always an interesting concept. Whether a person thinks it’s good or bad depends on the direction the wealth is being redistributed. A business owner, for example, is quite satisfied if he’s on the receiving side of the redistribution, but up in arms if he believes he’s on the distribution side.

William Bernstein offers his thoughts on wealth disparity. I’m pretty sure he’s not a “socialist.”

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avatar Investor Junkie

You do realize Dr. Bernstein’s comments aren’t exactly “capitalistic” either. While his books about modern portfolio theory are great he’s also believe government:
- run health care (single payer) is the ultimately best solution
- run retirement should replace 401ks.

Based upon the underfunded state pensions and Social Security this idea is flawed at best.

In addition, his causation in his blog post is flawed:

“It is becoming increasingly obvious among obesity researchers that the primary underlying factors in this epidemic are social class and income inequality. ” While it may be true that “rich” people can get access to better choices to eat, is good healthy food that costly that most American’s can’t get access to?

I find it ironic that we state “rich fat cats” and still use this term today. This term came from the robber barons of the early twentieth century. You were considered “rich” if you were fat. Poor people were skinny because they didn’t have access to enough food. I find it highly ironic the today the reverse is considered true today. You must be poor if you are fat and you must be rich if you are skinny. Why can’t it be you just make poor decisions on what you eat regardless of your economic status? “Poor” choices in food is available to everybody.

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avatar Len Penzo

According to Bernstein “If individuals cannot keep enough of what they earn then they will not produce. If, on the other hand, the most productive do keep what they earn, significant inequalities inevitably result.” (Yeah. And?)

Although he tacitly acknowledges that the poor are “better off in terms of real income, health, life expectancy, and material comfort than even the richest citizen in 1900,” he goes on to assert that all human beings measure their well-being not by the previously mentioned measures, but in relative terms. In other words, my self-worth is not determined by me, but by how much wealth my neighbors have. What poppycock. And even if that was true, so what? Why does that justify closing the wealth gap?

But reading on, Bernstein’s solution – after one strips away the candy coating – is to remedy the income inequality and make the disaffected at the bottom happy through redistribution of wealth. Call it what you will – but that sounds like a form of socialism to me. That’s not how capitalism works anyway. :-)

Maybe I’m being a bit harsh, but if he claims to be a true believer in American-style capitalism he has a few issues to deal with. Hey, that’s just my two cents. :-)

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avatar Jay Kimball

I put together several charts that show the long term income and tax trends for the top 1% of earners, as well as a plot of the US GIni index, which is a measure of income equality. For those interested, see:

http://8020vision.com/2010/11/16/when-does-the-wealth-of-a-nation-hurt-its-wellbeing/

Jay Kimball
8020 Vision

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avatar Dan

CBO, GDP, GOP, OMG…!
France, Greece, OH PLEASE…!
FICA? Keynesian? Links? Whatever…

Blab, blab, blab…

Almost half of the people don’t pay any federal tax but vote for politicians promising them more entitlement/spending on them, paid for by OTHER PEOPLE MONEY.

How about EVERYBODY pay a flat tax?
I’m so sick of people who want to fix things using OTHER PEOPLE MONEY.

If you feel you have too much money, donate it to charity.

You’re a dumbass if you think Congress will use any extra income to pay off their debt.

If you think somebody earning x dollars make too much or can afford to pay more taxes, I want to ask you what is the difference between you and a carjacker or mugger? You didn’t earn it. Why do you feel you are ENTITLE to spend it?

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avatar Hate the Hater

Why don’t you take a sedative and a deep breath, man. Congress paid down the debt and had a surplus under Clinton. Where are you getting your facts. You pay taxes for the formation, administration, and upkeep of our society. Want police to protect you? Want good roads to drive on? Snow plows to get you out in the winter? Other emergency needs? You pay for them. The federal government gives aid to state government which gives aid to locals. Its trickle down, yeah, but more efficient than allowing the wealthy to withhold taxes. After all, most of them didn’t earn it, they inherited it. Now we can’t even tax that inheritance or their dividends without idiots like you taking their side. What are they paying you to TEA BAG for them??!

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avatar Financial Samurai ♦290 (Nickel)

Pretty good of them! Sure, let the tax cuts expire above $1 mil….. that’s fine. But raising taxes after $200,000 is NOT fine. So many people more than 1% make over $200,000 … a 29 year old 1st year MBA grad from a top school makes that much for goodness sake. The gov’t needs to increase the limit of what they think is rich.

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avatar Hello GOP

The trickle-down economic theory has not worked in the last 10 years per Warren Buffet. In fact, many of these millionare do not need extra income from paying lower tax rate. In contract, the people that need lower tax are the middle class, the people that are making $30-250 thousand per years.

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avatar Lynn

What a complete crock! Who do you think you’re fooling? You want to give money to our government? Feel free. There is no rule that says we can only give what we owe. They’ll take more. And if you’re as giving and “patriotic” as you claim, you don’t spend the money to announce this. Just do it!

Who do you think you are to think you’re something special by telling the government to stop the already-in-place tax cut for everybody, simply because you won’t lift a finger unless forced? Want to help our country? Increase production. Take money out of your “done very well over the last several years” money to spend to hire people to make you richer (and the country more productive.). Help on your own. Don’t make this into being magnanimous with other people’s money, simply because you won’t do it unless forced.

How dare you decide what others have to do, simply because you WON’T do it on your own? Magninomous? You self-righteous bunch of brats.

And do you think I’m writing this because I want to keep my money? I’ve got no money to keep. I’ll never have money, but what the government gives me for disability. At least I’m not making a moronic statement to prove I’m special by forcing others to do anything. Patriotic my eye! This very gesture is putting yourself before country. I’m not buying it, and any sane person has to agree.

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avatar Hate the Hater

You anti-tax terrorists crack me up. Bush ran the wars off the budget. Gave tax breaks across the board, mostly to the rich and didn’t pay for them. Now we’re deep in debt and we ask the people in this country who benefited most from the tax cuts and use their wealth to buy unlimited influence in congress to help out a little. Especially since the tax rates on the upper class are lower than they’ve ever been. And you all want to talk a blue streak about the unfairness of it all; how congress has an abundance of money to play with. What a joke. You guys must troll the internet to find the slightest evidence to support your love of trickle down ecomomics. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office says that trickle down economics is the least effective way to invest in economic growth. Also, the fact that all the trickle down of the last three Republican administrations netted Zero Jobs! Its time for a new direction – to get the car out of the ditch – so let’s allow the tax breaks for the wealthy less-than-one-percent end. Then, if there is still all this catawalling from the Right, lets set them up to the 1963 levels of 91%.

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avatar Lynn

Obviously, you don’t read before you write. ;)

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avatar Len Penzo

Barrack, is that really you? LOL

The non-partisan CBO? You mean the same non-partisan CBO that said 0bamacare would reduce the Federal Budget Deficit by $138 billion over the next ten years? That’s what I thought.

I guess the logical extension to your argument is that wealth is actually created from the bottom up. If that is true, then I suppose those folks in Cuba and North Korea should be a lot better off than we are here in the USA.

And yes, by all means, let’s raise the tax rate up to 91 percent on all the “rich” Americans with incomes over $250k! That ought to fix the Congress’ inability to stop spending — not to mention get rid of the $14T National Debt and $100T+ in unfunded obligations promised to the masses.

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avatar Investor Junkie

CBO _is_ non-partisan. They only calculate the numbers given to them. Garbage in garbage out.

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avatar Len Penzo

Ding ding ding!!! Winner winner, chicken dinner! :-)

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avatar Jane

No one is stopping these millionaires from paying more in taxes. How many of them have simply written out a check to the IRS for what they think they should be paying? I suspect that none of them has. Instead of trying to have everyone join in their mission, why not lead by example and write out that check? The tax law doesn’t need to be changed, these guys can very easily just write out a big fat check. They also can stop sheltering their money in foundations. If they stop sheltering the money, they can allow Uncle Sam to confiscate half of their wealth for it’s own use. You would think that would make them happy.

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avatar Jane

I’m also curious why the tax breaks won’t be extended for those singles making over $200,000, but a couple making over $250,000? Sounds like a marriage penalty to me. If it’s going to be $250,000 for a couple, why not $125,000 for a single? Or, if $200,000 for a single, it should be $400,000 for a couple. $125,000 for a single person is quite a comfortable life.

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avatar Jane

If tax cuts aren’t going to be extended for the so called “rich”, then they shouldn’t be extended for anyone. Everyone should have to sacrifice. That would include the 50% of Americans who don’t pay any income tax. They benefit from our military and use the roads. They should be supporting the government just as the other 50% are required to. It’s also time to eliminate the earned income tax credit. Why are people who pay no income tax getting an income tax refund???

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avatar Mary

End this fighting abroad. Bring our troops home. Imagine how much would be saved.

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avatar Jaime

Excuse me, I couldn’t stop laughing. Don’t think you pay enough taxes? Why did you bother to hire accountants or lawyers to help you prepare your returns? 35% of whatever you made last year is pretty simple to calculate. Texas Instruments is the only tax advisor you need my friend. And if you still think you are short changing Uncle Sam, you can write him an additonal check and send it straight to the treasury department. They will gladly accept it.

This is such phony baloney nonsense. It just proves that just because someone has LOTS more money than you doesn’t mean that they are any smarter or have any more common sense. Just more luck.

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