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View Diary: Give Me One Good Reason Why The Rich Should Pay Higher Taxes (214 comments)

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  •  Money is fungible (0+ / 0-)

    How many dollars can dance on the head of a bracket doesn't matter all that much.

    Unless you're talking total income taxes to total income, my first hour's wages compared to their first 10 seconds of salary might be an interesting comparison, but not because we pay equal rates of tax on them.

    It's 'redistribution' whether it happens before or after the money is made and whether it goes up to a small group or down to a larger one.

    by Into The Woods on Thu May 13, 2010 at 08:27:39 PM PDT

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    •  I think you missed my point (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Into The Woods

      which is not that they pay the same as us in income taxes (they don't), but that to claim that they are unfairly singled out to pay higher tax rates on their entire income (the exact claim too often made by their advocates and paid lapdogs of the punditocracy) is completely untrue. Even in those instances in which their income is not derived from capital gains, they only pay those higher rates on the top end of an income that billions around the globe would gladly be taxed on. But to read the columnists, you'd easily get the impression that a top marginal rate of 90% (such as we used to have), taxed the rich on 90% of their entire income. As CA Berkeley WV says above, they don't even get taxed as high as the rest of us in payroll taxes (for which incense will not soon be lacking on the golden altar of St. Ronnie).

      My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
      --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

      by leftist vegetarian patriot on Thu May 13, 2010 at 10:55:16 PM PDT

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      •  Sorry. You are absolutely correct. (2+ / 0-)

        Just had that argument with someone claiming they paid over 50% of their gross income to fed, state or local.  Asked him to give me the formula of % that produced that result and he replied by using the highest marginal rates as if they applied to his entire income.  When corrected, he failed to respond.

        Yes.  Every time someone says "pays more than 1/2 of their income in taxes" we need to be all over them.

        My mistake in misinterpreting and thanks for coming back to correct me.  

        It's 'redistribution' whether it happens before or after the money is made and whether it goes up to a small group or down to a larger one.

        by Into The Woods on Fri May 14, 2010 at 01:19:31 PM PDT

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        •  I frequently think that blurring this distinction (0+ / 0-)

          is one of the greatest successes of the Right in the last century. I remember last month I heard a U.S. senator say something which indicated either a failure to understand marginal tax rates or blatant dishonesty.  I'd like to figure out some memorable way of framing the truth to counter this false argument, but as can be seen, I'm not there yet.

          My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
          --Carl Schurz, remarks in the Senate, February 29, 1872

          by leftist vegetarian patriot on Fri May 14, 2010 at 01:24:31 PM PDT

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        •  How do you respond to the charge that (0+ / 0-)

          the top 1% pay 40% of all taxes paid?

          •  If We Had More Income, We'd Pay More Taxes (0+ / 0-)

            First, that statistic relates only to Federal Income Tax.  

            While that segment of the taxes is significant, it is pretty common, even in what can be described as progressive states, for the working class and poor to pay a higher % of State and Local taxes and fees than the rich do.

            Beyond that, you get into the very premise of a progressive income tax.  

            Even allowing for the rich folks more pricey "necessities", if you compare the money left over after such necessities and call it disposable income, the rich pay a much lower percentage in taxes of their disposable income than do the less affluent.

            Bottom line, if you or I have to pay an extra $1,000 in taxes, it's chewing into some basic budget items.

            Where does the same level of sacrifice come for Donald Trump or Paris Hilton?

            $10,000?  
            $100,000?
            $1,000,000?
            $10,000,000?

            And given the pretty obvious fact that the growth of wealth in the past 20-30 years has been diverted disproportionately to the very wealthy, any time they want to divert some of it back to the rest of us, their overall tax liability will go down.

            Until then, we'll try to make up on the back side what they've stolen from us on the front end.  

            It's 'redistribution' whether it happens before or after the money is made and whether it goes up to a small group or down to a larger one.

            by Into The Woods on Mon May 17, 2010 at 11:37:25 AM PDT

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