Taxes"Taxes, after all, are the dues that we pay for the privileges of membership in an organized society." FDR
The [Republican] plan not only adds $1.5 trillion to the deficit, but the cuts for rich people are permanent while the ones for the poor, expire. Which we should all do soon and decrease the surplus population. A not unprobable outcome since, oh yeah, this so- called reform also manages to push 13 million Americans out of their insurance. That’s known as adding injury to insult. Robbing Hood (12/31/2017)
“They did what their donors wanted,” LaFrenz Falk said. Seeing the same plan enacted on a national scale is “very frightening,” she said. “History is littered with examples of cultures that allowed the wealthy to take over and forgot about the rest. What happens next? It doesn’t end well. How does that look in a country with no gun control?” Kansas's ravaged economy a cautionary tale as Trump plans huge tax cuts for rich
The US Donor Relief Act of 2017 (1/8/2018)
Robbing Hood (12/31/2017)
The Big Lie that is Behind the Trump/GOP Tax Bill (12/19/2017)
A Tax Plan to Turbocharge Inequality, in 3 Charts (10/17/2017)
Don't Be Fooled, Warn Critics, Trump's GOP Tax Effort Nothing Short of "Corporate Coup" (11/30/2017)
Paul Krugman: The Biggest Tax Scam in History (11/27/2017)
A Tax Plan for a New Gilded Age (11/2/2017)
Trump’s $700 Billion Gift to Wealthy Foreigners (10/26/2017)
How Corporate Capitalism Looted Democracy (9/18/2017)
GOP plan would help only the rich. Catherine Rampell (9/5/2017)
Did Trump Get a Big Tax Refund After 2005? (6/16/2017)
Trump’s tax cuts are trickle down economics all over again — except this time it’s even worse (6/6/2017)
Zombies of Voodoo Economics (4/24/2017)
No Trump taxes, no tax reform (4/18/2017)
The 35 Percent Corporate Tax Myth (3/9/2017)
It won't be a trickle down economy, it will be Niagra up. It is clear that the latest Republican tax bill will be a massive gift to the wealthy while adding $1.5 trillion to the debt. (When Republicans are in control, deficits don't matter.) There will also be other extraction from most people: millions will no longer have health insurance, predictably insurance premiums will rise. The fiduciary rule is no longer there to protect retirement accounts and the CFPB has been rendered toothless. Other consumer protections have been removed as cabinet level appointments assure the dismantling of vital regulations. Say goodbye to net neutrality, environmental protection, or even financial regulations. Income inequality will be on steroids. This is how the economy spins out of control
Republicans in Congress, like Paul Ryan are now ready to propose an austerity budget, that will block grant programs like Medicaid to the States. That’s the Republican health care plan: pay up or die. States will need to either take up some of the burden...or remove services from the most vulnerable.
Hurricane devastated Texas, the Gulf Coast, and Puerto Rico needed urgent assistance, western states fires wiped out unprecedented areas, infrastructure continued to decay, and other problems were unaddressed, Republicans rewarded themselves with tax cuts.
Of course, country club Republicans are always engaged in their favorite sport: avoiding taxes and they have many professionals, lawyers, accountants, and other consultants to help them. Although Republicans claimed that tax preparation would be simpler, their latest bill is, in all its complexity, a gift to tax preparers.
Corporations like Pfizer would
migrate overseas and take their earnings with them to avoid taxes.
GE, world-class polluter, gets subsidies from the government
that give it an effective tax rate of -9%. If I remember my high school
civics, the reason the Articles of Confederation was a failure, was
that it did not provide adequate taxes. It was replaced with the Constitution
that we have today.
The problem remains. Tax cheating
is a problem and Republicans are leaders
in exacerbating it. Republicans have cut funding for the IRS, while the tax 'reform' will increase their workload.
They are still claiming that tax cuts improve revenue, while
the lessons of the past are to the contrary. Are Republicans destroying
this Republic also ? There are stern warnings that we are losing our democracy... if we ever had it.
States, like Connecticut, are already under some stress, so very lean budgets will be even more starved.
Finally it will trickle down to the localities and fall on the property tax.
Services will deteriorate at all levels, there will not be much revenue for decaying infrastructure.
Planning for retirement, your hard-earned nest egg must last for the rest of your life, but your financial professional doesn’t have to work on your behalf because the Republican Congress decided that the fiduciary rule is unnecessary.
Ignoring public opinion, Republicans would remove millions from health insurance so they could save money for what they really want: tax cuts for the wealthy.
This brings up the question: Does the Republican Congress work on behalf of the people ? Serious academic studies found that it does not: Gilens and Page of Princeton, Lawrence Lessig’s book “Republic Lost” and others* argue that Congress responds to funders, not the people.
Republicans, counter to public opinion, tried many times to repeal the Affordable Care Act removing millions from health insurance. Without a replacement, they would save money for what they really want: tax cuts for the wealthy.
History shows tax cuts do not pay for themselves, but resulting financial strain could impact Social Security, Education, welfare, etc.
Undaunted, Republicans are still moving to cut taxes for the wealthy, now paid directly from deficit spending. Elimination of the inheritance tax alone would benefit, in billions, Trump $4, Koch $38.6, Waltons $51.6, Adelson 12.2 ... As Dick Cheney said: “ deficits don’t matter”. The GOP tax plan would also increase income inequality, yet another attack on democracy.
They did find $700 billion to kill people.
Change tax policy:
Even though the deficit is one of their main complaints,
country club Republicans favorite sport is
evading taxes. Their accountants and lawyers rely on that to make
their living, but as in other corrupt countries, tax avoidance is a
large part of the problem with deficits. A stiff graduated tax
would solve many problems: It would take care of the obscene
bonuses that bankers gave themselves after the taxpayer bailouts,
it would damp down hedge fund speculation, and it would make
means-testing Social Security
unnecessary. When Ike was President the top marginal tax rate was
around 90%, highly respected executives worked for a dollar a year.
But things have changed since Republicans took the Grover Norquist
pledge. US leadership has failed.
The simple-minded Republican mantra that lower taxes and smaller government are always better disguises the reality. It is effective in accelerating income disparities to extreme levels, removes the tax burden from the already wealthy, and makes government an ATM machine for the well connected.
Here's the important thing to notice: earnings from hard work
are taxed much more heavily than financial windfalls. That's why Mitt
Romney and Warren Buffett pay a much lower percentage tax rate than do
the vast majority of workers. It's also one of the reasons that income
inequality has grown so rapidly in the U.S. Almost all of the
productivity gains of the last few decades (actually since Reagan) have gone to a small
fraction of the 1%. Most people would agree that unearned income
should be taxed much more heavily than wages from hard work.
That many forms of unearned income should be more lightly taxed than earned income may appear incongruous in a country that, according to the President, sanctifies the work ethic, but the explanation is not hard to fathom: wealthowners have more political power in America than nonowners of wealth. The list of tax privileges that wealthowners enjoy runs the gamut from the petty to the grandiose. The initial advantage is that taxes on unearned income are not withheld automatically, as are taxes on wages and salaries. Unearned income is also exempt from social security and other payroll taxes, which are the fastest growing federal taxes. Peter Barnes (1972)
For example, high-speed trading is a parasitic activity on the market. A tax on high-speed trading could damp down some of the economic volatility we experience, It could raise considerable revenue also.
Students borrowing to pay for higher education should
not pay higher interest rates than banks or taxes on their wages. In
countries with more successful outcomes, education is free.
A carbon tax should replace payroll taxes for everyone
making less than, say, $100,000.
Since US media and elected officials are beholden to big
money, it is a worthwhile investment for large contributors to invest in
the US political process. That is how major corporations
have climbed out from under their tax burdens, how extreme wealth
gets to keep more and more of their stash, why most people (you) will have to pay more, why the
middle class is sinking, and why our government is for the corporations, not the people.
Media, reliably representing the corporate interest, never mentions advantages of a progressive tax. The graduated income tax does not burden you when you are out of work. It can roll back obscene bonuses, improve anemic demand, level our increasingly poor wealth disparities, damp speculation, prevent a new aristocracy, help break politicians dependence on oligarchs, and it is in the spirit of true Christianity by burdening the already comfortable and relieving the poor. Under Ike the top marginal rate was around 90% and the economy was much better.
Both fundamental fairness and sensible economic policy justify
progressivity in the tax code. The progressive income tax lost most
of its progressivity under Republicans
since Eisenhower (the top marginal rate was round 90%) and the net result has been an
increase in the already poor distribution of income in the US.
The elimination of the estate tax (shrewdly labeled the 'death tax' by Republicans) is yet another tax break for unearned wealth that will continue our move toward extreme income inequality and aristocracy. This Republican initiative has the potential to bring back the kind of feudal aristocracy that this country's founders abhorred.
Republicans have not made government smaller, nor have they been fiscally responsible. They did not pay for the wars that they provoked, they borrowed massively from third world countries (passing this debt on to the next generation), and enriched their cronies with much of the proceeds. They are ready to incur a $1,5 trillion deficit to pay for another tax cut for their wealthy donors. How is that different than a banana republic ?
Graduated Income Tax
Many States have an income tax that is a percentage of Federal. The graduated income tax is the fairest and best one to pay for the town's schools or other State expenses. It is an economic stabilizer, so it is also best at national level.
If there is anything that Republicans agree on it is that taxes should be flat, but keep in mind that any flattening is a cut for the already wealthy. It is regressive and it exacerbates our already extreme unfairness in income distribution. Republicans opposed extending the payroll tax cuts which would help working people, but favor lowering corporate taxes and capital gains taxes. They are actually tax dodgers in the pocket of oligarchs.
Republicans often favor a flat sales tax, sometimes called in
an Orwellian sense the 'Fair
Tax'.. It is backed by very wealthy and, like all other Republican policy, it is
extremely regressive. Be careful what you wish for. It is an
integral part of the Republican scam. We have a distribution of
income worse than that of 1929. Making it worse makes economic collapse more likely and pushes many into debt servitude.
Republican candidates often think that the 'fair tax' (their
words to describe a flat sales tax) is a good idea. It isn't.
Tobin TaxExcessive speculation creates volatility in the economy and is one of the causes of cycles of boom and bust. In the 1930's there were steps taken to damp it down. The Glass-Steagle Act protected taxpayers from excessive banking risk, but that was rejected in the zeal to deregulate.
The Tobin Tax is a tax on speculator's currency transactions. It is a good idea. Republicans won't hear of it.
A financial transaction tax is more fair, stabilizing, and much better for the economy. More than 40 countries have one. European finance ministers implemented one on January 1, 2014.
H.R. 1579 proposes a small tax on Wall Street transactions that could raise hundreds of billions of dollars annually from banks and investment firms that recovered thanks to our tax dollars. The tax would help limit reckless short-term speculation that threatens financial stability, calm the deficit hawks, and slow the Republican war on 'entitlements'.
A former Goldman Sachs investment banker pointed out "High-frequency trades are carried out at 'blinding speeds to the point where 50, 60 or 70 percent are done by 'robo-traders.' This does not give value to the economy, it damages it."
H.R. 1579 revenue could create jobs, maintain failing infrastructure, reduce poverty, and even address climate change. We need a different Congress to pass H.R. 1579.
As inflation proceeds, as it always does, retirees on fixed incomes find that the value of their homes increase along with their taxes and pushes them out of their homes especially quickly along the shoreline. Seniors may have few options for paying higher taxes considering that inflation in practically everything else makes the problem worse.
The property tax is regressive, a force for urban sprawl, a
destroyer of undeveloped land, and a patently unfair lever that
forces seniors from their homes. Since the State mandates property
taxes as the main source of school funding, it makes education
dependent on the affluence of each town.
It is no wonder the argument over the town budget looks like a generational war: Retirees vs Students.
Some Legislators in Florida have proposed doing away with the property tax as a funding source for the schools. They have proposed modest increases in the State's sales tax to provide for school funding. Actually, the sales tax is fairly regressive also. It hits everyone whether they are earning or not, so it can depress consumption. Look at it this way: a relatively poor person will need to spend a large percentage of his income and his consumption taxes will be much higher by percentage than the very wealthy who need to consume only a small part of their income.
The best solution, although at State level, would be to eliminate the property tax as a funding source for the schools by replacing it with the graduated income tax. The income tax hits only people who actually have income...not students or seniors, and when it is graduated it can put the burden on those most able to pay. Considering the obscene CEO salaries that we often hear about, it is only reasonable to tax high earners at high percentage rates. We used to do this, but Republicans changed it.
The Property Tax should be minimal. It is unfair, subject to inflation, contributes to urban sprawl, and it is highly regressive. The graduated income tax falls most on the comfortable and is, overall, fairest and best for the economy.
(6/2015) Ct Governor Malloy's determination to repair infrastructure resulted in spending cuts, and raised corporate taxes, but large corporations, members of the CBIA, screamed in pain and threatened to leave the State.
General Electric cried loudest. From 2008 to 2013, GE profits were over
$33.9 billion in United States, it received a total tax refund of more
than $2.9 billion, for an effective tax rate of -9 percent.. In 2012,
GE stashed $108 billion in offshore tax havens. If this practice were
outlawed, GE would have paid $37.8 billion in federal income taxes that
year. GE has been a leader in outsourcing decent paying jobs to China,
Mexico and other low-wage countries. It is also a leading polluter.
He is a member of the Business Roundtable, a group that wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70, cut Social Security and veterans’ benefits, increase taxes on working families, and cut corporate taxes even further.
As Leonna Helmsley said “Only little people pay taxes” and these Corporations are not little. The lesson we can learn from this: Not only can you not tax multinationals, they will threaten to leave if taxpayers don't bribe them to stay. They can open bidding among States and localities to see who will make them the best offer.
Republicans work hard to keep wages down, oppose minimum wage hikes, and bust unions because they think it is 'business friendly'. In fact it causes demand to drop.
Climate change is most likely
the most serious threat to life on this planet. Very likely we are beyond the point of no return, yet
Republicans deny the science and want to
cut spending for the National Science Foundation.
That is consistent with their short-sighted closure of the Office of
Technology Assessment some years ago. They blocked the CIA's study of climate as a
Since we are also facing a climate crisis, the best way to deal with these issues would be a stiff carbon tax. That would be a robust revenue source, and an effective way to reduce CO2 emissions.
The kids are doomed, but Republicans don't care.
Wouldn't infrastructure be better funded with a higher gasoline tax ? Wouldn't carbon taxes make sense ?
American elites don't have to go to Panama to hide their money — they can go to