View Poll Results: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share?

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  • Yes

    82 45.30%
  • No

    99 54.70%
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Thread: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

  1. #51
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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Canell View Post
    No. Only a flat tax can give you that.
    But then, the tax system is so out of balance (complicated and like a Swiss cheese), so a flat tax per se wouldn't really matter now.
    Flat tax. . . .If a person makes 20K a year and someone makes 500K a year, in a flat tax, who is going to pay a greater "percentage" of their income toward tax? Who will want a flat tax first? rich or not rich?
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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by leftofabbie View Post
    Yes, the top rates are higher, but you're overlooking the fact that the top 10% of America's earners are taking home 50% of America's income. This is much more lopsided than other OECD countries.
    You're going off on a tangent.
    If you expect people to be rational, you aren't being rational.

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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    On the face of it, Romney is just getting by.

    With tax loopholes how much does he REALLY pay?

    Warren Buffet needs to take a lesson from this. As one of the richest men in the world he states he pays fewer taxes than his assistant. She must make a ton.
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  4. #54
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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by teamosil View Post
    People have tried to make the argument you are making in court- that "uniform" means "flat". But that isn't really what it says. What it say is that the federal taxes need to be the same in Delaware as they are in Georgia, which of course they are. We tax every person according to the same tax brackets for wages, the same rules for capital gains, etc.

    The amount of benefit somebody draws from society is proportionate to their income. If somebody owns a company with 100 employees, for example, they are drawing benefit from 101 educations, where the employee is only drawing benefit from one. The person with $1 million in investments benefits 1,000 times as much as the person with $1,000 in investments from most bailouts. National security and law enforcement both provide more value the more you have to protect. The richer somebody is, the more stock they own, the more wear and tear they are putting on the roads through those companies, the more pollution they are generating, the more regulatory costs they are creating, etc.

    But those are just the benefits they draw directly from the government. All the money they have is drawn from society as a whole obviously. They aren't printing it in their basements on animal skins from animals they killed themselves, they are getting it from transactions with other people. That's the source of their money- society. So, it makes sense that they would pay more to keep that society strong, right?
    Ah, but that same argument, that a citzen making $1,000,000/year is getting 10x the gov't benefits of one that makes $100,000/year would not support taxation at a higher rate at all, that would mean that a "fair" tax is at a FLAT rate. ;-)
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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    It's not about the rich being taxed more, so the gov can decide how to waste more of our money it's about the uber-wealthy making too much from using their leverage and influence to imbalance the capitalist system. The best way to spread the wealth is to use the gov to enforce regs and allow more competition, reducing product and service prices, creating more jobs.
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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by DrM View Post
    Flat tax. . . .If a person makes 20K a year and someone makes 500K a year, in a flat tax, who is going to pay a greater "percentage" of their income toward tax? Who will want a flat tax first? rich or not rich?
    That depends. If the AGI basis for FIT, is gross income minus $10K, then the richer (in your example), at the EXACT same tax rate, would pay a much higher percentage of gross income as tax, since the poorer (in your example) will get a 50% break in how much of their gross income is taxable. ;-)
    Last edited by ttwtt78640; 06-03-12 at 12:58 PM.
    “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists to adapt the world to himself.
    Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” ― George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman

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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by grip View Post
    It's not about the rich being taxed more, so the gov can decide how to waste more of our money it's about the uber-wealthy making too much from using their leverage and influence to imbalance the capitalist system.
    You have a chicken/egg dilemma in the fact that you have to be wealthy in the first place to be able to corrupt government in your favor, and doing so tends to make those successful at it all the more rich. So it's self-reinforcing.

    The best way to spread the wealth is to use the gov to enforce regs and allow more competition, reducing product and service prices, creating more jobs.
    1) If government is beholden to the wealthiest and their corporations, then how exactly do we the people use the government to our own benefit?
    2) More competition does not necessarily mean more American jobs. Sometimes this is inversely proportional.
    Last edited by Neomalthusian; 06-03-12 at 12:58 PM.

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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by Neomalthusian View Post
    You have a chicken/egg dilemma in the fact that you have to be wealthy in the first place to be able to influence government in your favor, and doing so tends to make those successful at it all the more rich. So it's self-reinforcing.



    1) If government is beholden to the wealthiest and their corporations, then how exactly do we the people use the government to our own benefit?
    2) More competition does not necessarily mean more American jobs. Sometimes this is inversely proportional.

    True. It's very hard to uncorrupt the system but threatening the politicians by voting in non party affiliates or a public push for campaign and lobbying reform would be a start.

    1) People have power in numbers and can boycott companies, use the Press, demonstrate and vote.
    2) Trust me my method historically works. Without greedy executive officers doing anything for 1/4 quarterly profits to boost their bonuses and shareholder earnings there are more funds available for everyone.
    Einstein, "science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind."

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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    Quote Originally Posted by ttwtt78640 View Post
    Ah, but that same argument, that a citzen making $1,000,000/year is getting 10x the gov't benefits of one that makes $100,000/year would not support taxation at a higher rate at all, that would mean that a "fair" tax is at a FLAT rate. ;-)
    Yeah, that argument takes you from regressive (everybody pays $x) to why it needs to be relative to income. Snake_Plisskin was arguing that everybody draws equal benefits, so they should pay equal taxes or else it is discrimination. My points refute that position, I think, right?

    As for progressive taxation, currently we have a system that is moderately progressive up to about $1 million per year, but then sharply regressive after that. If you favor flat taxes, then you are on the "no the rich do not pay their fair share" side, since you would be arguing that we should increase their tax rates. Flat taxes are more progressive than what we have now at least with regards to the rich.

    But, IMO we should go beyond that to actual progressive taxation. The chief argument is the diminishing marginal utility of wealth. Every dollar a person makes has slightly less value to them than the previous dollar. Makes sense, right? If you get $1,000 you'll spend it on the thing you need the very most. If you get another $1,000, you'll spend it on the thing you need next most. By the 100th $1,000, you're spending it on things that are far less important to you than the things you spent that first $1,000 on. Once you get up to billionaire level, each dollar has so little value that even a million wouldn't even be noticed. So, to maximize the utility of wealth, you want it to be less concentrated. That doesn't mean it should be like equally distributed or something, but you need to balance that waste due to concentration against the desire to create incentives for success and whatnot. Progressive taxation is a good way to strike that balance.

    IMO that is the strongest argument for progressive taxation, but there are many. Another is that you need consumer spending to drive the economy. Ever since we started these tax policies that radically over concentrate our nation's wealth in very few pockets, our consumer spending has been growing at a lackluster pace and that prevents our economy from really taking off. Another is the obvious moral concerns with people who don't even work or do anything useful getting roughly 1/4 of all the wealth generated by all the working people while many of those people who are actually doing the work are barely able to provide for their families.
    Total tax rates- People living in poverty: 16.2%. The median American: 27%. Working people who make over $140k/year: 31%. The top 1%: 30%. Super rich investors: around 15%. Help the democrats retake the house.

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    Re: Do the Rich Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes in the United States?

    The poll should include TWO choices for NO, one that says "NO, they pay too much" and another that says "NO, they pay too little", YES is self explanitory, that the current tax system is just and fair. ;-)
    “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists to adapt the world to himself.
    Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” ― George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman

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