What is the top tax rate again?

United States
June 7, 2012 6:49pm CST
For decades right wingers have complained that the top tax rate was to high. However, changes in the tax code have created loop holes for the ultra wealthy large enough to drive a bus through. It was reported today that 6 of the top 400 tax returns in 2009 (last reporting year for such stats) paid NO federal income tax. Their adjusted gross income was $202.4 MILLION. They joined the other 50% of tax payers that didn't pay a dime in taxes. I know that many on here want to reform the tax code, and even move to a flat tax. But, with examples like this do you really think that these 6 people would willing pay a flat tax rate? http://money.cnn.com/2012/06/07/pf/taxes/rich-who-owe-no-income-tax/index.htm?iid=Popular
5 responses
• Australia
9 Jun 12
Ah, he thinks wistfully, if only I could set the taxes. Any personal income in excess of $500,000 to be taxed at 98c in the $1 on the excess. As to flat tax, I used to believe in that too, thirty years ago, but I came to realise that if the tax rate is flat, then pay increases should also be flat: but 5% of $20,000 is a pay rise of roughly $20 per week, and 5% of $100,000 is roughly $100 a week, and the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. And since the very act of earning huge incomes generally requires a far greater use of the assets of the "common weal", the rich are morally liable to pay extra tax rates because they use up resources at so much higher a rate than the poor. I wonder how Americans would react to the Australian tax rates lol. I believe their top tax rate will soon be going to 39.6%, a mere bagatelle. Belgium, Denmark, Japan, the Netherlands, and Sweden all have top rates of 50% or more. I agree wholeheartedly. Australia: $180,001 and over $54,550 plus 45c for each $1 over $180,000 It's a start. Lash
1 person likes this
@debrakcarey (19924)
• United States
8 Jun 12
The latest data show that a big portion of the federal income tax burden is shoul­dered by a small group of the very richest Americans. The wealthiest 1 percent of the population earn 19 per­cent of the income but pay 37 percent of the income tax. The top 10 percent pay 68 percent of the tab. Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent—those below the median income level—now earn 13 percent of the income but pay just 3 percent of the taxes. These are proportions of the income tax alone and don’t include payroll taxes for Social Security and Medicare. Over the past seven years, however, Americans in general think taxes have become more fair, not less. The Gallup Organization found in an April poll that 60 percent of respondents believe the income taxes that they themselves pay are fair, com­pared with 37 percent who believe the taxes they pay are unfair. In 1997, the figures were 51 percent fair and 43 percent unfair. Did you know that class warfare was a tactic the Marxist used to bring about the Russian Revolution? 5-10 million. And that doesn't include the deaths that were a result of the Soviet system over the years up until it fell. Envy has NEVER been a character trait of Americans as a whole. PRIDE in hard work, and producing the highest standard of living the world has ever seen is the American character. Class envy is an embarrassment to America. My parents would not recognize this country anymore and I am embarrassed myself, for the whinny attitude and the envy and yes, GREED of those who want someone elses money.
• United States
8 Jun 12
Well Deb here are 6 that aren't being burdened, don't you want to know why? I bet they paid less in taxes than you did!! "The Gallup Organization found in an April poll that 60 percent of respondents believe the income taxes that they themselves pay are fair, com­pared with 37 percent who believe the taxes they pay are unfair. In 1997, the figures were 51 percent fair and 43 percent unfair." This just shows how uninformed people are, if I was making $1,000,000 in 2000 and paid 37.37% in taxes I would have paid $373,670 in taxes. If I made $800,000 in 2012 and paid 32.1% in taxes I would have only paid $256,761 in taxes. What people don't look at is how much they made in 1997 in comparison to 2012. Yes you would have paid less in taxes, but you also made less money. "Did you know that class warfare was a tactic the Marxist used to bring about the Russian Revolution?" Did you know that republicans are using class warfare today against unions? They have been doing it for decades, trying to say that factory workers make to much money for what they do. But, now all of the sudden they realize that those high priced factory workers spent all of the money they made here in the US, unlike the factory workers in China "PRIDE in hard work, and producing the highest standard of living the world has ever seen is the American character." Not when it came to factory workers, republicans have been trying to ship those jobs overseas for decades, and now that they succeeded they want them back. "I am embarrassed myself, for the whinny attitude and the envy and yes, GREED of those who want someone elses money." Yet you aren't embarrassed by the insane spending on elections in this country by people are who are trying to manipulate the system to get around free market principles? Why doesn't that surprise me?
@debrakcarey (19924)
• United States
10 Jun 12
Guess what, I didn't pay any taxes, I got it all back and then some cause I only worked part of the year and went to school the rest of the year. Is that fair? why aren't you posting about that? almost 50% of the American population pay NO TAX and get a sizable credit if they worked, extra money form uncle sam. And unions, lol...they just want more of the tax money via public sector jobs. but that's ok too I guess. Taxpayers pay the wages of public sector workers but get NO SEAT at the table when negotiations take place. And while I'm at it, the unions will NOT LET the employee see the offer of the employer if its not to their liking, prefering to have lay offs instead, why? They get MORE the higher the contract goes. AS for jobs going over seas, lol...if you could get an apple for .25 rather than 2.00 what would YOU do? Oh, I know, you'd pay the 2.00 so someone could enjoy a higher standard of living, yeah right.
• United States
11 Jun 12
Deb, did you make $201 MILLION last year? I am in the same boat that you are because I have kids and don't make that much. The difference is that we spend all of the money that we get back right back into the economy. Do those six do that? We don't know, but there is a problem when you have SOME people pay taxes at that income level, and others not. If you pay attention to the job numbers you would see that public sector jobs are the ones being lost because of cuts in funding from states, and the federal government. If you look it up you will see a DIRECT connection between the middle class, and the strength of unions. A strong middle class is good for the country, and the facts show that when unions are stronger the middle class has done better. "AS for jobs going over seas, lol...if you could get an apple for .25 rather than 2.00 what would YOU do? Oh, I know, you'd pay the 2.00 so someone could enjoy a higher standard of living, yeah right." Depends on the quality of the apple, and where it was grown. If it was a better quality, or locally grown than YES I would pay more. The more we buy locally, the better THIS country will be. If you don't take care of THIS country, who will?
@redhotpogo (4398)
• United States
10 Jun 12
Why didn't they name them? Is this a made up story?
• United States
11 Jun 12
They are not allowed to legally.
• United States
11 Jun 12
They do it all the time. Why would they not do it now?
• United States
11 Jun 12
NO, if you do some research you will see they don't. That is ILLEGAL!!!
@Fatcat44 (1142)
• United States
8 Jun 12
I think this misses the point of why "right wingers" want lower taxes. First 'right wingers" want to close these tax loop holes, too. Second these tax loop holes are results of both right and left wingers. Obama has some of the richest people following and supporting him: who says it is okay for higher taxes, but as they write the codes, they put in loopholes where they can get the break to pay less taxes, but their smaller competition usually cannot. GE's CEO is a Obama supporter, and I remember posts from you criticizing GE because they paid no taxes last year, where their taxable US income was negative, but their foreign profits was high. I would like to have seen them pay more taxes, but yet when I see their share holders get profits, that will be taxed from money that was brought from overseas and put in the US economy, I see our economy being boosted from it, and a more taxes were netted from it as the increased money circulates around. Third, the money our government spends to high of a percentage other GDP. Every time taxes are cut, the economy grows. The government is too big and we the people have lost freedoms because of it. Our government is spending more and more. The left wingers have not had a budget passed for the last 3 years, and instead they spend, spend, and spend, where the are spending trillions dollars a year more than an other times, and it all borrowed money. Fourth, the first major tax cuts were done by JFK, a democrat. When JFK entered into the presidency, the top tax was 85%. He lowered it and the economy took off. Every time there was a tax cut, business grew and even with a lower percent on the tax, the net taxes collected by the IRS was more...and the economy grew. Reagan tax cuts got us out of the terrible times of Carter. We need lower tax, but even taxes. I think 100% of the citizen in the US should have the privilege to some taxes, no matter what they make. The other thing I have problem with is that I pay more taxes in sales, state, and local taxes. Many local communities have to high of tax rates and are burdening the economy. Yet, they may have the best parks and such.
• United States
8 Jun 12
Fat, every time someone talks about changing the tax code they say it is a tax increase. You are correct that no party owns tax loopholes, they are a bipartisan issue. The reason GE didn't pay taxes was because of the loses GE capital had in 2009, but they should you get a tax break because you failed a running a business? Not every time taxes have been cut the economy has grown. The best way to cut taxes is to have calculated tax cuts that will increase job growth, and the amount of money ALL Americans have to spend. Clinton and Reagan did a good job of this, Bush and Obama have not. We don't need lower taxes, we need fair taxes for both corporations, and individuals. A flat tax based on GDP would be the best way for individuals, and a corporate tax rate that is not based on how many representatives you can afford. Our country is burdened by our system of electing politicians, and the Supreme CORRUPT Court is ensuring it stays that way. The only way to change our tax code is to get the money out of government. One of the things you need to look at when you look at state taxes is the amount of money the government is sending back to the states, and the amount of money your state is sending back to your city. Many states have cut funding from the state level to the cities which forces them to find other ways to pay for services like Police, Fire, and Parks. You might want to look at your governor and see what he/she has done to cause this!!!!
@Fatcat44 (1142)
• United States
8 Jun 12
debater, I am amazed. I can agree with a lot of this. However with our political system, it ain't gonna happen.
• United States
9 Jun 12
Fat, the people will only allow the corruption for so long.
@bobmnu (8160)
• United States
8 Jun 12
What was the source of the income? If it was from a Roth IRA they already paid taxes on the income. If it is interest on Public Bonds the income is tax free, to keep the interest rate low. As to all the deductions that is a reason for a flat tax for everyone.
• United States
8 Jun 12
Bob, as you know the IRS can not give you that information. I agree that a flat tax would be better, but if you were one of these 6 wouldn't you want the system to stay the same? And, how much money would you be willing to spend to keep it that way?
@bobmnu (8160)
• United States
9 Jun 12
I have figured my taxes using different tax proposals and would vote for a flat tax even though I would pay more in taxes. It would save me hours of record keeping and and large bills from my accountant. I think many would support the tax even though they would pay taxes. Right now they have a choice of paying taxes or paying accountants and lawyers. I think that many of the rich don't mind paying taxes as long as they are able to make and keep their money. However when you are punished for making money by having the government take a higher percent of your money as you make more the larger percent the government takes.
• United States
11 Jun 12
The problem is that many, like these 6, won't pay more. The problem in this country is the idea that people are being punished for making a lot of money. They are not being punished, the rest of us would LOVE to be in their same situation. I wish I made enough to pay federal income tax!!!!