Taxing Thoughts

The Wall Street Journal published a chart yesterday breaking down IRS data from 2006 on federal-income taxes collected as a function of income level…

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Given that 50% of the people are paying the taxes that support the other 50%, it’s hard not to believe that there’s something to science-fiction author and blogger Jerry Pournelle’s recently expressed view of the nature of modern government
The purpose of modern government is to take money from the folks who save and pay their bills and live within their means, and use that to hire government workers; and to keep their power by using the money to buy votes from those who do not save and pay their bills and live within their means. And of course the money comes from those who work and save and pay their bills and live within their means — who else will have any money for the government to take?

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Tabetha Bernstein-Danis
Tabetha Bernstein-Danis
12 years ago

Just in case anyone thought the middle class were actually getting any tax breaks…
Paychecks keep getting smaller while gas, food, electricity, etc costs rise. And both major parties are responsible for this mess, but since the majority of politicians, both Republican and Democrat, tend to come from the highest income bracket, I guess it doesn’t hurt them all that much.

Richard
Richard
12 years ago

Yes, this is known as a progressive income tax, as opposed to a regressive or flat tax. And, no, it does not mean that the top 50% are SUPPORTING the bottom 50%. Expletive that. Remember, most of the bottom 50% work their butts off so the top 50% can live in relative luxury. Your thesis about the purpose of modern government is naive, pathetic, whining and broken. The real workers are the folks who clean the toilets and houses of the rich, who dig the ditches and landscape the gardens and parks, flip the burgers for minimum wage with no health care benefits. Some of them send some of their wages paid by the rich to them (under the table) to their extended families in the Azores, Brazil and Mexico, where these folks buy American goods and enrich our economy. Every time you Anchor Rising folks scream in pain about undocumented workers I have to laugh- what are you, jealous of their thrift, hard work & productivity? Should they be taken into our economy, given tax numbers and allowed to contribute to taxes & their health care? Oh, no, they might be diseased. They speak foreign languages- they might be cospiring to hurt us. Maybe we should lock them up & deport them at huge taxpayer expense? Sure! I won’t go on too much more because your head is hurting. Your Luddite-like view of the economy is so… retro eighties… so FoxNews… Wake up and smell the real world. When did you last clean a public toilet? OK, I haven’t done so for 20 years… but I clean my own. The work of the bottom 50% enriches the top 50%, but that’s OK. Noblesse oblige. It’s God’s will. When the top 50% are taxed as they are, they still manage… Read more »

Ragin' Rhode Islander
Ragin' Rhode Islander
12 years ago

Richard appears to have graduated, with honors, from the economics program conducted by The Poverty Institute, acquiring an LLM degree (“Looney Left Marxism”).

Andrew
12 years ago

Richard,
You have no clue about what you are talking about.
The 50%-adjusted-gross income break is somewhere in the vicinity of the low $30,000s. Show me any piece of evidence that backs up your claim that “most” casualties in Iraq have come from families making an AGI of 30,000 or less, or that families making more than $30,000 are somehow less patriotic than families making less than $30,000.
When you can’t find that, you can go on to not finding data showing that 30,000+ AGI range is dominated by “trust fund babies”. Or that most folks making $30,000+ aren’t regular hard-working people.
Tell me, you say you stopped cleaning public toilets 20 years ago. How come? Did better opportunities come along? If they did, do you think it was an appropriate role of government to try to slow you down through progressively higher taxes as you made your climb on the great ladder of life?
(And if you must know, two weekends ago, I spent most of my Sunday morning cleaning my bathroom toilet and replacing a leaky faucet).

chuckR
chuckR
12 years ago

Richard
Who would you have replace Carcieri? Cicilline – the man with the spine of a chocolate eclair? Roberts – who waited patiently for permission to lead during our December slopfest snowstorm and whose idea in the face of a massive structural deficit was to advocate more healthcare from state government?
I guess we’ll see in two years. I’m in favor of 4 year general officer terms – the ratio of campaign stunting to actual governing is already high when its a once every 4 year beauty contest.
If you want more responsiveness, propose provisions for recall and for direct voter initiatives.
I’d like to see a modified statistics of income that factored the value of government assistance into the income of the bottom 50%. And I’d like to drop out people, such as my children, who are claimed as deductions on someone else’s tax return. You could go back and forth on this a lot (deductions for the rich!, no fair!) – I’d also be happy to see a flat tax – exclude $40K for a family of 4 and pay 17-20% above that – no deductions of any type, no games.
Lastly, if you feel state government is being unjustly starved, you and the liberal rich can just kick in another 10% voluntary tax surcharge. In a state that votes 80% dem, if you all put your money where your mouths are, it would go a long way towards fixing the problem. Bet that idea is even deader than the flat tax, though……

chuckR
chuckR
12 years ago

Well, as long as we’re talking potty qualifications, I’ve replaced a total of six toilets in two houses (hint, pay the extra $2 to get the seal ring with the silicone sleeve). As a kid, I also helped my dad repair our septic tank – twice – unforgettable! I also managed to be on the wrong end of snaking a septic field distribution line. (Explanation for the soft handed or East Siders – a snake is a long thin metal strip or coil that is used by electricians to pull wires or by plumbers to poke through what could be genteely termed ‘obstructions’).

Citizen Critic
Citizen Critic
12 years ago

Why is Governor Carcieri always the cause of all the state’s problems? Why does the General Assembly always get a free pass?
It’s very curious..

George Elbow
George Elbow
12 years ago

Richard,
Do yourself a favor and swing by RIFutureless and pick up Comrade Patrick “I struggle with basic math” Crowley and his mentor Bob Walsh. Then, drive directly to Butler Hospital and get a room for 3.
Mostly when I read your writing– well, you sound dark, cynical, bitter, angry, frustrated. If you keep pushing your personal and political agenda so hard … well I just worry. Lighten up, and try to WORK with other productive members of society (i.e. taxpayers) – work instead of mocking and deriding. It ain’t pretty, the mocking and deriding. Join a volunteer committee. Republicans are people too. Some committees only require 3 or 4 hours a month work.
By the way, will Bob Walsh and the other Communist folks over at the NEA be pulling their money out of the Pension Funds that are invested in the companies that are run by the “non-hard-working” 50% that are paying 97% of the taxes? Just curious?

Richard
Richard
12 years ago

Thank you all for the laughs. I haven’t rolled my eyes at the ceiling that mamy times in a single hour since W’s last press conference. I do wish to get serious and let you all know that I really despise most of the Assembly & Senate leadership. Corruption is deeply rooted in RI government- an inevitability in a small state with strong ethnic communities and only one large party. I mentioned I grew up in Chicago as a Daley-hating Democrat. I find myself in the same role here- a minority and a reformer in my own party. I am a fairly strong union supporter, but in RI I see about half the unions are unbelieveably corrupt. It’s bad when you admire the public school teachers but hate their leadership. In the building construction trade unions though I practically pray for socialists like the NEA leaders, because– folks— the mafia and thugs and drug laundering creeps in the construction unions would make socialists look like saviors. If Republicans were in charge in RI in the same preportions they would be at least as corrupt. 100% sure about that. We DO need a good balance R/D in this state- it just will take so long- well, I am 52. I’ll be over 90 and in a Home before there is balance. Best bet for you guys: move to New Hampshire, or become a Democrat. Work on the D’s from within. I am totally serious. So, you need to know I am NOT a Rhode Island Democrat. But I’ll still take many RI Democrats over the greedmongers, religious fanatics, immigrant bashers and swift boat sisters whose writings pop up in Anchor Rising, ie RI Republicans. I am a Democrat, but not a RI Democrat. As for taxes, the burden on the rich… Read more »

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forex broker
8 years ago

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