View Poll Results: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

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Thread: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

  1. #141
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by cpwill View Post
    no, actually, generally it wouldn't. not only would his "income" be below the 250K mark, but he keeps most of his private wealth in a non-taxed trust, and pays no tax on the dividends that accrue to the stocks he owns in Berkshire-Hathaway.

    Buffet has gone to quite a lot of trouble to ensure that no tax hike will ever actually hit him.

    You are misinformed. His income was far in excess of $1mill and the tax would most definitely apply to him.


    Stop Coddling the Super-Rich
    By WARREN E. BUFFETT
    Published: August 14, 2011

    (snip ... )

    Last year my federal tax bill — the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf — was $6,938,744. That sounds like a lot of money. But what I paid was only 17.4 percent of my taxable income — and that’s actually a lower percentage than was paid by any of the other 20 people in our office. Their tax burdens ranged from 33 percent to 41 percent and averaged 36 percent.

    If you make money with money, as some of my super-rich friends do, your percentage may be a bit lower than mine. But if you earn money from a job, your percentage will surely exceed mine — most likely by a lot.

    To understand why, you need to examine the sources of government revenue. Last year about 80 percent of these revenues came from personal income taxes and payroll taxes. The mega-rich pay income taxes at a rate of 15 percent on most of their earnings but pay practically nothing in payroll taxes. It’s a different story for the middle class: typically, they fall into the 15 percent and 25 percent income tax brackets, and then are hit with heavy payroll taxes to boot.

    Back in the 1980s and 1990s, tax rates for the rich were far higher, and my percentage rate was in the middle of the pack. According to a theory I sometimes hear, I should have thrown a fit and refused to invest because of the elevated tax rates on capital gains and dividends.

    I didn’t refuse, nor did others. I have worked with investors for 60 years and I have yet to see anyone — not even when capital gains rates were 39.9 percent in 1976-77 — shy away from a sensible investment because of the tax rate on the potential gain. People invest to make money, and potential taxes have never scared them off. And to those who argue that higher rates hurt job creation, I would note that a net of nearly 40 million jobs were added between 1980 and 2000. You know what’s happened since then: lower tax rates and far lower job creation.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/15/op...h.html?_r=1&hp
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  2. #142
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tigger View Post
    I am against ANY American paying a single penny more than their fair share to the Federal Government. That means, until we remove the illegal, immoral, and unConstitutional spending from the budget, and get the bottom HALF of our citizenry actually paying INTO the system rather than being exempted from it, I don't want to see the taxes of ANYONE who IS paying into the system raised.

    I look at it this way.... We have five people renting an apartment together. Currently two of them are not contributing anything to the monthly rent and bills. One is contributing a small portion, one a medium portion and the last is picking up the majority of the tab for the rent, utilities, and groceries. Now, these individuals are running a deficit because the rent keeps going up, they're using more hot water, electricity, etc...., and the three who are at the bottom end are eating them all out of house and home. Instead of looking at controlling the bills, or pitching in themselves, the lower end trio is again screaming for the top guy to throw more into the pot "because he can afford to." BULLSPIT!!! Maybe if the lower end trio got off their lazy butts and started contributing, or actually doing something useful like cooking and cleaning rather than ordering takeout every night and demanding a maid service come in to clean the apartment for them, there wouldn't be a need to DEMAND that the rich guy pitch in more.

    Once again, an argument to avoid addressing the inequities. There is NO reason to be against ensuring that the very wealthiest pat *at least* the same rate as middle income earners. None at all. Specious arguments that "spending must be addressed first!* are just that - specious.
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  3. #143
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by jackalope View Post
    Once again, an argument to avoid addressing the inequities. There is NO reason to be against ensuring that the very wealthiest pat *at least* the same rate as middle income earners. None at all. Specious arguments that "spending must be addressed first!* are just that - specious.
    Ok, then let's get to that "inequity" as you like to see it....

    Is the tax rate for those people LESS than the rate for the middle class.... NO. They're just better at "hiding" their income. Either that or they live off their WEALTH rather than their income. If you want to tax their WEALTH, then we have no common ground to even discuss this topic. That is something I am against on every level possible. Now, if you are interested in removing tax loopholes to force them to pay a certain percentage on their INCOME, I might be with you (depending on the specific loopholes). However, simply raising their rate is going to do nothing more than provide added incentive for these people to "hide" their income, or (as I would) to move out of the United States entirely.

  4. #144
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by cpwill View Post
    revenue from the rich went up after those cuts, and our income tax remains the most progressive in the industrialized world. they are currently paying more than their fair share.
    Although tax revenue did start to pick up (as I can recall) about 2004 until the market crash, weren't there a few years of lag that we experienced where revenue dropped (especially on the FIT side)? Couldn't it be argued that we would might have collected more gov't revenue during that time if the tax cuts weren't enacted, and perhaps we would have been more equip to pay off our short-term war debt?

    Tax cuts should have been reversed in 2003 once it was apparent that the war effort was not going to be "in-and-out", but that's just my opinion.
    Last edited by David D.; 09-20-11 at 10:40 AM.

  5. #145
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tigger View Post
    Ok, then let's get to that "inequity" as you like to see it....

    Is the tax rate for those people LESS than the rate for the middle class.... NO. They're just better at "hiding" their income. Either that or they live off their WEALTH rather than their income. If you want to tax their WEALTH, then we have no common ground to even discuss this topic. That is something I am against on every level possible. Now, if you are interested in removing tax loopholes to force them to pay a certain percentage on their INCOME, I might be with you (depending on the specific loopholes). However, simply raising their rate is going to do nothing more than provide added incentive for these people to "hide" their income, or (as I would) to move out of the United States entirely.
    No, they're not hiding their income. What they're doing is perfectly legal. The point of the new law. And yes, the rate they pay is less than middle income earners. No, it's not a wealth tax, it's an income tax. But, interesting idea .
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  6. #146
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by jackalope View Post
    No, they're not hiding their income. What they're doing is perfectly legal. The point of the new law. And yes, the rate they pay is less than middle income earners. No, it's not a wealth tax, it's an income tax. But, interesting idea .
    Ok, if what they're doing is perfectly LEGAL, then what the hell is your problem with it? Personally, I'd like to BE one of the wealthy someday. It probably won't ever happen, but if I am able to get there, I'd like to KEEP as much of my money as possible, thank you very much. As I said, if this law is truly seeking to close existing loopholes, then I'd be willing to at least take a look at it. If instead, it is about raising their rate or forcing them to pay on items of income/wealth that the middle class doesn't, then I won't even waste my time looking at it.

    As for taxing "wealth".... If you truly want to destroy this nation's economic system you go right ahead and do that. The sound of this nation's wealthiest people (and their money) leaving this nation for foreign shores would drown out any other noise you can even imagine. I would imagine they'd take their businesses, and all the associated jobs with them as well.

  7. #147
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tigger View Post
    ..As for taxing "wealth".... If you truly want to destroy this nation's economic system you go right ahead and do that...
    returning the whiny wealthies' tax-rates to pre-Bush levels, will destroy the nation's economic system? talk about hyberbole.

    how was America's economy doing during the Clinton years..when the tax-rate on the wealthy was at 38%? it was doing pretty damn well.

    your scare-tactics are pathetic, dishonest, and boring.

  8. #148
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tigger View Post
    Ok, if what they're doing is perfectly LEGAL, then what the hell is your problem with it? Personally, I'd like to BE one of the wealthy someday. It probably won't ever happen, but if I am able to get there, I'd like to KEEP as much of my money as possible, thank you very much. As I said, if this law is truly seeking to close existing loopholes, then I'd be willing to at least take a look at it. If instead, it is about raising their rate or forcing them to pay on items of income/wealth that the middle class doesn't, then I won't even waste my time looking at it.

    As for taxing "wealth".... If you truly want to destroy this nation's economic system you go right ahead and do that. The sound of this nation's wealthiest people (and their money) leaving this nation for foreign shores would drown out any other noise you can even imagine. I would imagine they'd take their businesses, and all the associated jobs with them as well.

    What's my problem with it? They are paying a lower rate than middle income earners. That is why the proposed change that Obama is making is so reasonable and sensible. Why in the world you would want it to remain legal for the very highest income earners to pay a lower rate than middle income earners is beyond me.

    I thought you were interested in 'fair'. Guess not. Yea, this law is about closing loopholes. And, btw, he's proposed closing a whole bunch more loopholes too. Guess I'll just wait and watch you get in line to cheer for more loopholes, Tigger.
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  9. #149
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thunder View Post
    returning the whiny wealthies' tax-rates to pre-Bush levels, will destroy the nation's economic system? talk about hyberbole.

    how was America's economy doing during the Clinton years..when the tax-rate on the wealthy was at 38%? it was doing pretty damn well.

    your scare-tactics are pathetic, dishonest, and boring.
    Two different things, Thunder. You're talking about Income Tax Rates. I was referring to taxing WEALTH rather than Income, which is something that jackalope had commented sounded like a good idea to her. It's also something that would lead to a massive exodus of the wealthy from the United States.

    As for Income Tax Rates.... You can make them whatever you want on that group; they will find ways to reduce their tax burden (as every intelligent citizen does).

  10. #150
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    Re: Should the Buffett Rule" be made law?

    Quote Originally Posted by jackalope View Post
    What's my problem with it? They are paying a lower rate than middle income earners. That is why the proposed change that Obama is making is so reasonable and sensible. Why in the world you would want it to remain legal for the very highest income earners to pay a lower rate than middle income earners is beyond me.
    No they aren't. They're just paying less of their total income because they are better capable of finding ways to reduce their tax burden. I see nothing wrong with that, so long as the budget issue and the 51% who pay no income tax are still part of the system. In fact it's something I go out of my way to do as well; though obviously on a lesser scale.

    As for why I'd want the highest earners to pay less..... I have this hope that someday I might BE one of them.


    Quote Originally Posted by jackalope View Post
    I thought you were interested in 'fair'. Guess not. Yea, this law is about closing loopholes. And, btw, he's proposed closing a whole bunch more loopholes too. Guess I'll just wait and watch you get in line to cheer for more loopholes, Tigger.
    FAIR requires both ends to give, not just one. As I've said, any system that does not remove ALL UNCONSTITUTIONAL SPENDING and REQUIRE the bottom end to start paying income taxes as well cannot be "FAIR" by definition.

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