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Over and over I am hearing the meme that, "the poor do not pay taxes".  WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!  

Please People try to focus here.  

I am a low income person, and I can tell you I pay more taxes than one of the richest men in the world who lives in my state ~ Bill Gates.  BTW, Mr Gates along with a PACCAR heiress and others in my state even put out a video begging that they pay something near the taxes I pay. This is because they know that indeed, THE POOR PAY MORE TAXES THAN THEY DO.  

More over the fold.

You know, the going attitude is that poor people like me are ignorant.  We "choose" poverty, and it is all our fault we are poor.  This is because the general population is not aware the poverty in this country and around the world is an institution, it is not an individual choice. This institution of poverty is based on several things: racism, sexism, ageism, and classism.  I can go in more as to why this is true in the comments, if you want.

Embedded institutions remain in place because they benefit someone.  In the case of poverty it will remain because it benefits the classes above them and this is why eradicating poverty will never happen unless it is understood how YOU benefit from those who are poor. Most of all, the poor provide cheap labor (think of that cheap stuff you get at WalMart, Target, etc., all based on below poverty work that make people like the Waltons the richest family in the world while their workers suffer with below-poverty wages).

First of all one way the rest of the population benefits is with taxes.  According to the Institute for Taxes and Economic Policy in every single state the poor pay a higher proportion of income than anyone else.  Check your state out here: http://itepnet.org/... . In my state, I pay upwards of 17% of my meager income in taxes: http://www.itepnet.org/... while Bill Gates pays less than 2% of his income.  

There are a few things I have to yell so protect your ears: TWO PERCENT OF $70 BILLION HURTS WAY LESS than 17% of less than $10,000.  Get real, Mr Gates still has BILLIONS to live off after paying his taxes while a few thousand dollars for someone like me is devastating.  Furthermore if Bill Gates alone out of the rich 1% in my state, paid what a welfare mother pays, not only would we be able to finance all the services that are being drastically cut, we would be a couple billions in the black.  Remember we have TWO of the richest men in the world in my state so do the math and you will see THE RICH SHOULD PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE BECAUSE THEY SUFFER LESS THAN THE POOR FOR WHAT THEY SHOULD PAY.

And we are not even talking about corporations who not only don't pay any taxes at all, they get billions back.  In my state Boeing, who gets all the consideration in the world here, not only doesn't pay taxes, they got $1 BILLION dollars back.  Oh. Oh. I see ... Every legislator here defends this by saying, "Well Boeing gives us joooooobs ..."  

Yeah right.  Well ask their unions what jobs they give when they import thousands of people from all over the world and then lay them off, flooding the labor market and burdening the safety net every few years that Boeing REFUSES TO PAY.  And ask these same unions why in exchange for all the perks Boeing has gotten over the past 100 years, they feel the need to move to a non-union "right to work" state while their CEOs rake in millions in bonuses, much less their pay?  (crickets) .

I do not just mean to pick on Boeing, these same perks apply to many large industries here and around the country.  

While these elites are not paying taxes, guess who pays for the roads, courts, and Commons that they use more than the poor?

Now. Let's get into the Poverty Industry that benefits upper income people far more than the poor.  Let's start with large non-profits. The biggest nons in this country collect millions a year in state and federal funding and spend on the average of $64,000 per client.  This is for "services" such as managing federally funded energy assistance, which at most comes to about $2000 or less per year per client, subsidized child care coming to at most $8000 per year, or emergency rental assistance coming to no more than $500.00, more often less than $50.00. Additionally these nons also collect millions in donations, most of it from the upper income people who use it for their tax deductions.  

Where does the rest of that $64,000 go?  Well for one, the rich LOVE to employ their relatives and spouses in those 6 figure "executive" jobs.  I am not making this up to tell you that in a large non-profit, you can literally ascend the stairs and notice that the higher you go, the fancier the digs.  At the bottom it is littered with broken electronics, furniture that has seen better days, and employees who cannot make the rent on their salaries.  When you get to the top keeping this 6 figure salary in mind, you will see expensive furniture, original art on the walls, plush offices, and the newest in electronic equipment and an immaculately groomed and dressed executive.  All tax deductible.  

Many of these non-profits claim they are "teaching" the poor "employment skills".  They use them as their galley slaves, employing the poor in below poverty wages and using unpaid "volunteers" (see WorkFare ~ the biggest union buster program around) who are on the floor selling their donated goods, running their warehouses, and driving their pick-up vans ~ none who are able to support a family on what they are paid ~ AND also these gally slave's pay is government subsidized.  

I cannot say enough about small grassroots non-profits who actually do REAL work yet struggle and beg for every penny they use while these large non-profits roll in the dough ~ for their rich beneficiaries.  These small nons are having bake sales, working for free or little incomes, and competing for the sliver that is left of the government pie, while trying to do the work these big nons refuse to do. Such as working hard to change a rigged system by lobbying (with free volunteers pouring their hearts out to bored legislators) and advocating for desperate families who are scrambling for services that are being cut more and more that they need.  

And now you know the beneficiaries of poverty refuse to do any real work to eradicate poverty because they live off people in poverty

Yet idiots still spout the crap I do not pay taxes.  While it seems my little $2000 a year is not as much, believe me, it it a horrible sacrifice and it hurts my family.  $2000 makes all the difference for necessities needed when you cannot even afford to keep the heat on. As the federal funding dwindles and states have to make up what they lost, guess who THEY pretend "doesn't pay taxes" Loud whisper here "The POOR DON'T PAY TAXES!"  Yet in truth people like me sacrifice a lot to pay taxes in order to make sure rich people and corporations do not scream because their taxes might go up 2%.  

So yes the poor DO pay taxes and we sacrifice a lot to do it, dammit!

Cat in Seattle  

Poll

Do you believe the poor do not pay taxes?

7%9 votes
17%21 votes
2%3 votes
2%3 votes
70%86 votes

| 122 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (21+ / 0-)

    First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

    by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 09:48:43 AM PDT

    •  Great diary! It really is. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BlackSheep1

      I'm right there with you.

      Don't even get me started on the Poverty Industry. A good number of those"non-profits" can completely implode and it wouldn't bother the poor one bit. Because the poor don't really benefit from most of them.

      I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - M Angelou

      by Lightbulb on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 02:47:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And they are so punitive ... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        slatsg, Lightbulb

        ...where you have to endure case managers looking over their glasses as if you are one of the Crips and Bloods assuming you are a theif. They expect you to fill out a ream of papers and tell your whole life's story for a $50 energy voucher~ while without so much as one question required from the real takers who are upstairs buying BMWs with Daddy's tax deductible money.  

        Yeah don't get me started either.

        First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

        by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 09:37:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, yes yes! (0+ / 0-)

          So very true.

          You know, we should make a list of charities that treat people with respect instead of treating us like we're Voldemort or something. Could be a handy list for poor people.

          I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - M Angelou

          by Lightbulb on Sat Jul 09, 2011 at 03:42:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  mntle02 - you are absolutely right (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Unit Zero, phonegery, Shirl In Idaho

    Poor people don't pay any INCOME tax, but they do pay many other taxes and when people make the statement they should appropriately qualify it.

    "let's talk about that"

    by VClib on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 10:06:27 AM PDT

  •  I am pretty sure that Bill Gates (3+ / 0-)

    pays more in taxes in a single year than most of us will ever see in a lifetime of work. Use percentages instead of raw numbers does not change the fact that he pays out WAY more in taxes than the rest of us.

    That said, you are correct that the poor do indeed pay taxes of all types, if not federal income taxes.

    •  Bill Gates and others of that ilk (4+ / 0-)

      could pay 50% of their gross income  in taxes, and still have enough money left over to live a very lavish lifestyle.  But Bill Gates wouldn't have that money were it not for the gas tax that all car owners pay, the gas taxes that pay for the roads that allow the employees at Microsoft to get to and from work.  Bill Gates couldn't afford to build, much less maintain those roads.  Those roads are, in part, a subsidy for Bill, paid for by all the car drivers in the country.

      Income taxes do not begin to measure the total taxes Americans pay.

      Democrats - We represent America!

      by phonegery on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 10:58:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank-you "quantity is *not* "quality"! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        phonegery, BlackSheep1

        First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

        by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 11:01:53 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Bill Gates (0+ / 0-)

        is rich because he worked harder, smarter and more aggressively than his competitors. And I am pretty sure that and the thousands of employees at Microsoft paid whatever taxes were required for their share of the roads.

        Microsoft was not subsidized by the existence of roads or other infrastructure. The public (and the government) has no claim to his private property and wealth just because he made use of public infrastructure.

        •  No. Not quite. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          BlackSheep1, phonegery, slatsg

          Yes he's a hard worker, no doubt. But his father made big lawyer money, and his mother is from the Maxwell banking family. Bill was born a trust fund baby, and had the capital, and family support to follow his dreams.

          Computers might look very different had Bill needed to work at McDonalds as a young man.

          I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - M Angelou

          by Lightbulb on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 02:52:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  As well if anyone else (0+ / 0-)

            had been born to that family instead of Bill. Point being, Microsoft was not created by who Bill Gates was born to.

            •  It was both. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              BlackSheep1, slatsg

              He couldn't have done it at all without the capital investments and the time to develop their interpreters for the early computers. Who do you think supported them while they were developing their OS in the first place?

              Family money.

              They weren't supporting themselves on Mickey D's salaries, or needing to work 80 hours a week on a loading dock to pay for lentils, that's for sure.

              I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - M Angelou

              by Lightbulb on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 03:13:32 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Besides that he stole the code ... (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            slatsg, Lightbulb

            ...but lets not recognize that he had a head start or that he had the means to finance what he took.  Indeed a McJob was not in the cards for him even if he had sat on his butt by the pool drinking martinis while collecting the dividends, lol

            First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

            by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 09:12:44 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Then Gates should pay the same proportion as... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          phonegery

          ...as Ms Marple at the very least.  Nobody is trying to "claim" anything of his.  What we ARE saying ~ and he agrees btw ~ is at the very least he should pay the same proportion as Ms Marple if not more.  12% is not as much of a sacrifice for Mr Gates and it IS a Commons issue.  Because he uses the Commons more, it is only just that he be obligated to finance it more.  He is not subsidizing Ms Marple's use of it, so why should she subsidize his use when he is much more able to pay his fair share?    

          Just sayin' ...

          First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

          by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 09:08:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  You missed the Op-Ed point, Hon (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NancyK, BlackSheep1

      Since it is often difficult for people with full bellies to understand the issues with empty bellies let's do a little math:

      Say a low wage worker, Ms Marple, makes $10,000 per year and pays 12% of her income in taxes. 12% equals $1200.

      10,000 - (minus) 1200 = $8800 a year
      divide by 12 months and it leaves
      $ 733.33  expected to cover food, housing, energy and other needs.  So where in the HELL can Ms Marple find a place to live for $733.00, which is her whole paycheck? What is she supposed to do do for food, energy, clothing, supplies and other things? Even WITH the $1200 added on it is not enough to survive,

      Now let's do Bill Gates' income who generates around $40 Billion per year and for fun lets make him pay the 12% Ms Marple pays in taxes, even though his rate is really less than 2%:

      $40b - 12% = 35.2,000,000,000
      divide that by 12 months leaves:
      $ 3.9 b(plus some change of .3333333333b, or 1/3b or $333,000,000 which alone would house 100's of people for a year).  

      Now.  which one is making the greatest sacrifice to pay their taxes ~ Bill Gates or Ms Marple?  Who is using the Commons (legal system, airports, seaports, government services) more, Ms Marple or Bill Gates and his empire? Even with his family of 5 this leaves a luxurious lifestyle for all of them while Ms Marple cannot even pay for food if she pays rent and cannot pay rent if she decides to eat EVEN if SHE DID NOT PAY THE $1200.

      So it is why we are saying quality matters.  Quantity matters little when it comes to the sacrifice made to pay taxes when in fact paying even the same percentage as Ms Marple who has nothing after all her hard work while   Mr Gates is living high off the hog.

      Hope this helps

      Cat

      First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

      by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 12:16:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I keep using my baby sister as an example. (7+ / 0-)

    She made about 13000 a year when she was employed. Her house would probably fit into an oligarchs  guest bathroom. She has no health insurance, no pension plan and no assets to pass onto her heirs. SHE PAYS MORE TAXES THAN GE. I gave her a computer and printer to try to make some money and she does taxes for other poor people for $20. I give her furniture, clothes and money when I can.

    I make all my future plans based on having to take inat least 3 of my family members as they age. So as a middle class person you could say I am carrying the rich with having to replace what they take from her to feed thier greed.

    Fear is the Mind Killer

    by boophus on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 10:16:28 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for saying it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NancyK

    keep saying it, loudly.

    Washington's sales tax is particularly bad, and the fact that there isn't an income tax there places too much of the burden on middle class and low income people. It's totally fucked. Too bad the majority of voters didn't see it that way in November, and pass the high-earners income tax. I guess Washingtonians aren't as far-sighted as our neighbors in Oregon.

    "There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning." —Warren Buffett

    by Joan McCarter on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 11:54:21 AM PDT

    •  Thanks so much for your support (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NancyK

      ...what is most surprising to me is the poll I included which where almost the same amount of readers think I am lying as who know what I am writing is the truth.  WTF?  Anything I have written is available all over the Net, in libraries, with government stats, in tax revenues.  Soooo what the F else is unbelievable?

      Oh.  Maybe that poverty is easier to blame on the individual than admit that it is an institution the upper classes benefit from?  Sheesh sometimes the truth hurts ...  

      Sad

      Cat    

      First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

      by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 12:43:50 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Note on poll -- (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        also mom of 5, pbgv23

        It's actually confusing the way it's presented: the question should be if you believe the poor DO pay taxes.  

        Tipped and recommended.

        •  Good point (0+ / 0-)

          ...as you can see, I am not much of a poll taker, lol

          First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they hurt you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi

          by mntleo2 on Fri Jul 08, 2011 at 09:14:56 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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