Give me your money....now!

This is the place where all heated debates shall reside. Non-tech topics allowed. Personal attacks will not be tolerated. "Enter at your own Risk".

Moderator: The Mod Squad

Give me your money....now!

Postby CivilDissent » Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:55 am

Our Inequality of Outcomes

By Steven Pearlstein
Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Hey, good news on the income front: The Census Bureau reported yesterday that median earnings for full-time male workers rose by $1,653 last year, to $45,113, after adjusting for inflation.

Another year like that, and maybe the typical male worker will finally catch up to where he was in 1973.

Truth is, despite the squishy nature of income data, things haven't been so great for the middle and working class for some time. Every now and again you get a good year like last year, when wages and household incomes increased. That's usually at the tail end of an economic expansion.

But over the past 35 years, the typical American household has managed to eke out only a 15 percent increase in its pretax income. During that same period, the productivity of the American worker -- the value of the goods and services produced per hour worked -- has increased by 90 percent.

So where did all that money go?

To some degree, it went to the stock and bond holders who invested capital in the new equipment and technology that made those workers more productive. You'd expect that from a well-functioning capitalist economy.

What you wouldn't expect is that the rest of the income gains would go disproportionately to the households at the top of the income scale. According to data compiled by the Congressional Budget Office, in recent decades the top 10 percent of households have taken an ever-increasing share of the national income, at the expense of everybody else.

It would be neat if we could blame this upward redistribution on the economic policies of Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush, but for the fact that the trend lines also take in the Carter and Clinton administrations. Moreover, while more pronounced in the United States, there has been a similar trend elsewhere, including in countries with more egalitarian business environments such as Sweden and France.

Up to now, Republicans have tried to ignore the inconvenient truth about increasing inequality. Their first line of defense is to argue that in an economy with as much income mobility as ours, what matters is equality of opportunity, not equality of outcomes -- and then mumble something about more money for community colleges and No Child Left Behind. When that doesn't quite do it, they trot out their all-purpose solution -- the tax cut -- which does little to address the underlying disease but at least offers the salve of letting everyone keep a little more of what they earn. For the past eight years, that was pretty much the Bush administration's strategy. Now it seems to have been Xeroxed into the playbook of John McCain.

Democrats, on the other hand, have seized on middle-class anxiety as their ticket back into power. Early on, their favored solution, pushed hard by organized labor, was to try to tame the market by limiting trade and strengthening the bargaining clout of workers, but that never gained much traction with white-collar voters who didn't trust unions and weren't particularly threatened by trade. So centrist Democrats decided that rather than tamper with the workings of the market and risk sacrificing economic efficiency and competitiveness, it would be better to deal with inequality after the fact by using the tax code as an instrument of income redistribution.

The latest version of that strategy is given voice in Barack Obama's tax plan, which would not only keep most of the Bush tax cuts for working-, middle and upper-middle-class families, but add a few more of his own. At the same time, Democrats vow to restore the inheritance tax on large estates and raise taxes on those with incomes above $250,000. According to the latest analysis prepared by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, Obama's plan would raise after-tax incomes from present levels for the 80 percent of households at the bottom of the income scale -- anywhere from 5.4 percent, on average, for households with incomes below $20,000, to 1 percent for households with incomes below $120,000. By contrast, after-tax income would decline by 2 percent, on average, for households with incomes above $240,000, 8 percent for those above $620,000 and 10.2 percent for those above $2.8 million.

Two things to note about the Obama tax plan:

First, there is little evidence that the proposed tax increases on high-income households would seriously harm the economy. The effective average tax rates at the top would be about the same as they were in the mid-'90s, which if memory serves were boom years for investment and entrepreneurship, boom years for the U.S. economy, and boom years for federal revenue.

Second, even with the Obama tax plan, the distribution of after-tax income would still be roughly where it was only four years ago.

The reality is that the market's tilt toward unequal outcomes is now so strong that you can't just rely on a progressive tax code to counteract its effects. To do that, it may be necessary to forgo some of those additional tax cuts for the middle and professional classes to pay for increased spending on early childhood education, state colleges and universities, and expanded public health programs. It may be necessary to "tinker" with the markets just a bit by indexing the minimum wage to overall income growth, using the antitrust laws to bust up oligopolies like those on Wall Street and making it possible once again for workers to unionize without fear of losing their jobs. It may even be necessary to slow the pace of further globalization.

There's a good debate to be had on all of these ideas -- every one involves economic risks and trade-offs. But there is no debating that markets are doing a lousy job of distributing the benefits of economic growth and that another decade of stagnant wages and runaway inequality is unacceptable.


He makes a lot of good points, points that I have not heard mentioned by any of the candidates. And, the interesting point concerns that tax rates. Seems that the "increasing taxes for the rich, cutting taxes for the poor" idea does not, exactly, work as planned.
"A mouth does not have to be open for words to be said or be spoken."

1836
The Year the Greatest Nation on Earth was
Founded!

"Honor the Texas Flag.
I pledge allegiance to thee,
Texas, one and indivisible."
CivilDissent
Black Belt
Black Belt
 
Posts: 867
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 10:42 pm

Postby thomas_w_bowman » Mon Sep 08, 2008 10:29 am

His plan is especially good for folks not even paying ANY income tax today...

Estate Tax is brutal on Family owned businesses, such as small (non-Corp) Farms.

Capital gain taxes would be a tax hike on some 100 million Americans who own stock...

Here's the Wall Street Journal regarding Obama and Tax "Change" from last April
http://online.wsj.com/public/article_pr ... 24727.html
Better living thru technology...
"Open the Pod Bay Doors, HAL..."
Join Folding team #: 33258
thomas_w_bowman
Black Belt 2nd Degree
Black Belt 2nd Degree
 
Posts: 2884
Joined: Fri Feb 28, 2003 2:59 pm
Location: Minneapolis, MN

Postby tedybear » Mon Sep 08, 2008 3:37 pm

One thing that always amazes me? Is the sheer amount of idiots that buy into the "class warfare" bullcrap.

The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.

When people hear "Tax Cuts for the rich...Tax cuts blah blah blah blah"

Everyone thinks federal income tax rates. So using just that information? The 'rich' are getting hosed big time. That top 1%? Must feel like they just had an anal probe after the 14th of April.

S-
tedybear
Black Belt 5th Degree
Black Belt 5th Degree
 
Posts: 7251
Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2004 12:55 am
Location: Fulton, New York, on Earth

Postby kylepaddock » Mon Sep 08, 2008 4:27 pm

tedybear wrote:One thing that always amazes me? Is the sheer amount of idiots that buy into the "class warfare" bullcrap.

The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.

When people hear "Tax Cuts for the rich...Tax cuts blah blah blah blah"

Everyone thinks federal income tax rates. So using just that information? The 'rich' are getting hosed big time. That top 1%? Must feel like they just had an anal probe after the 14th of April.

S-



ya ya ya ya ya
Gateway MT6707 Notebook
Intel Pentium Dual Core T2060 1.6 GHz
Memory 2048 MB 533MHz DDR2 SDRAM
Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950
224 MB shared video memory
High definition audio 2 channel
160 GB HD
8X Multi-format dual layer optical drive
802.11g wireless LAN
4 USB 2.0 ports
One VGA port
One S-Video
One IEEE 1394
One PCMCIA Slot

If you have done a transaction with me, please fill out my heatware. http://www.heatware.com/eval.php?id=64039
kylepaddock
Black Belt
Black Belt
 
Posts: 732
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 8:58 pm
Location: California, USA

Postby jimmy-j » Mon Sep 08, 2008 5:03 pm

Teadybear wrote
The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.
Let me see now that's 51% of all taxpayers are paying 136% of all taxes.
I thought as a percentage 100 is as far as you can go.
this is as bad as those that say they gave it 120% effort.
jimmy-j
Black Belt 3rd Degree
Black Belt 3rd Degree
 
Posts: 3529
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2003 3:40 pm
Location: U.K.

Postby tedybear » Mon Sep 08, 2008 6:17 pm

jimmy-j wrote:Teadybear wrote
The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.
Let me see now that's 51% of all taxpayers are paying 136% of all taxes.
I thought as a percentage 100 is as far as you can go.
this is as bad as those that say they gave it 120% effort.


Need to think on a different scale.

The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.

The top 50% includes the top 1%. Don't blame me for how it got worded, that's how it appears on the IRS data fact-checking pages that always get used.

Then again, I suppose it should have been written:

Top 1% of wage earners----pays 39% of the total income tax.
The top 49% of wage earners, earning less then the 1% of wage earners? Are still paying a total of 58% of the total income tax. Using the IRS numbers...that accounts for 89% of the total tax bill already being paid by the so-called "Rich" (upper class citizens---to 'rich' citizens spread out using the IRS formulas for tax calculations)

The remaining 11%? Is paid for by the upper-middle class, down to the upper-lower class, provided they earn enough income to qualify for taxes to be paid---personal exemptions and deductions applied of course.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB119786208643933077.html

Taxes and Income
December 17, 2007

Every Democrat running for President wants to raise taxes on "the rich," but they will have to do something miraculous to outtax President Bush. Based on the latest available tax data, no Administration in modern history has done more to pry tax revenue from the wealthy.

Last week the Congressional Budget Office joined the IRS in releasing tax numbers for 2005, and part of the news is that the richest 1% paid about 39% of all income taxes that year. The richest 5% paid a tad less than 60%, and the richest 10% paid 70%. These tax shares are all up substantially since 1990, and even somewhat since 2000. Meanwhile, Americans with an income below the median -- half of all households -- paid a mere 3% of all income taxes in 2005. The richest 1.3 million tax-filers -- those Americans with adjusted gross incomes of more than $365,000 in 2005 -- paid more income tax than all of the 66 million American tax filers below the median in income. Ten times more.


Oddly enough? The data is from 2005, and only released in 12/07?? Ok Ok, so the IRS is slower then a herd of turtles. But does anyone think this trend got any better? LOL.

I didn't write the tax code, but clearly the bottom 50% of wage earners is only paying 3% of the total income tax bill.

One basic "Truth" of the universe? Math never lies. Numbers do not lie. Yeah people can re-word things to distract from the truth. But the above is right from the horses mouth, minus what comes out of the horses rear end.


Now can we stop with the class-war-fare bull crap? When it comes to income tax? CLEARLY the rich are the ones paying the lions share.

S-
tedybear
Black Belt 5th Degree
Black Belt 5th Degree
 
Posts: 7251
Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2004 12:55 am
Location: Fulton, New York, on Earth

Postby Roach412 » Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:28 pm

jimmy-j wrote:Teadybear wrote
The top 50% pays 97% of all income taxes.
The top---1%--- pays 39%, which is up 2% from 2000 when Pres. Bush took office.
Let me see now that's 51% of all taxpayers are paying 136% of all taxes.
I thought as a percentage 100 is as far as you can go.
this is as bad as those that say they gave it 120% effort.


um...obviously the top 1% are included in the aggregate top 97% of all income tax paid number. what it's basically saying is the top 1% of the income earners pay 39% Of total 100%) of the total, the next 49% (of 100%) pay the remaining 58% of top 50% of income earners. the left-overs of 50% of taxable income earners pays 3% of all taxes. it's really simple really...

-Roach
Lian Li Lancool First Knight Series PC-K59W
Intel Core i7-960 Bloomfield 3.2GHz
EVGA X58 FTW3 132-GT-E768-TR
EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 FTW GAMING ACX 3.0
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 12GB (3 x 4GB)
Crucial M4 128gb SATAIII SSD x2
Crucial M4 256gb SATAIII SSD
OCZ Saber 1000 960GB Enterprise SSD
Corsair Professional Series HX850 PSU
Dell UltraSharp U2713HM 27" w/drop ceiling mount
Logitech G930 7.1 Headset
DBPOWER RGB LED Keyboard
Logitech G402 Hyperion Fury
Roach412
Black Belt 2nd Degree
Black Belt 2nd Degree
 
Posts: 2714
Joined: Mon Aug 09, 2004 7:33 pm
Location: Milwaukee - Wisconsin

Postby thomas_w_bowman » Tue Sep 09, 2008 4:01 am

The REAL trick to 'soaking those rich folk' with higher tax rates is inflation... in time we'll all be millionaires (and it'll cost over $100 for a loaf of bread).

When the USA Started the Income tax (taxing the more prosperous more than the 'average' guy) I think that the top tax rates were for those rich folk making over $7,200/Yr.

It's educational to remember that when Regan lowered RATES that the total REVENUE increased (apparently more money is made by the private sector than by Government <duh!>).
Better living thru technology...
"Open the Pod Bay Doors, HAL..."
Join Folding team #: 33258
thomas_w_bowman
Black Belt 2nd Degree
Black Belt 2nd Degree
 
Posts: 2884
Joined: Fri Feb 28, 2003 2:59 pm
Location: Minneapolis, MN

Postby jimmy-j » Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:53 pm

Do the math? Sure, the top 10% of all tax payers paid 70%
50% paid 97%
So that is 40 % of top earners paid 27%
So what is the %age of incom that is taxable for the top earner?
It's 40% less allowances here in the UK
If you are earning a million a week 600,000 aint to bad to be going home with
jimmy-j
Black Belt 3rd Degree
Black Belt 3rd Degree
 
Posts: 3529
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2003 3:40 pm
Location: U.K.

Postby tedybear » Tue Sep 09, 2008 2:10 pm

jimmy-j wrote:Do the math? Sure, the top 10% of all tax payers paid 70%
50% paid 97%
So that is 40 % of top earners paid 27%
So what is the %age of incom that is taxable for the top earner?
It's 40% less allowances here in the UK
If you are earning a million a week 600,000 aint to bad to be going home with


NOT so fast. This only covers INCOME tax from the federal system.

Now factor in:

State Income Tax
Medicare/Medicade Tax
Social Security Tax


That should knock about another 20% or so off your check.

Of course, if you live in Texas, or FL? They are state income tax free.

Now figure in any sales tax on items you purchase, Fuel for your cars/trucks/etc...

For every one dollar you just worked your tail off for? About 60cents wound up getting sucked down in taxes in some manner.

Figure how confusing the tax code here in the USA is? I'm surprised people still have their shirts off their backs intact.

So basically, that "Rich" person making let's say... 200,000 a month.

Their actual take home pay, after bending over and grabbing the ankles? Is about 100,000 give or take a few bucks.

Still a big number people think! However considering they started out with twice that amount!!!!

So if some want to cut taxes across the board for everyone? I'm all for it. It helps everyone!! Except the lower class/lower middle class---who does not pay income tax already---and the same group the democrats are shoveling the class warfare to in order to get their vote.

"Look at them...Bunch of RICH FAT CATS living off YOUR labor!! Let's stick it to them!!" hell's bell's... Those "RICH FAT CATS" are the ones CREATING THE JOBS!!!! And some of the jobs pay pretty damn good!! The "Rich" re-invest $$ back into their company, hire more people, upgrade, think of more ways to make more money.....

Now slap 'em with higher taxes----Result? Less incentive to grow their business, Why invest so much--when it gets nailed with taxes for doing well? They have to deal with nasty shareholders that demand a good profit margin---So they cut back on staff---Result? Layoff's....more people lined up collecting unemployment.....

And the democrats fire back with more class warfare "Look at what the evil rich people did!!! Let's take even more and really stick it back to them!!"......

I'd love to see the "Flat Tax" kicked in....Now that would be the fairest tax system to be had.

S-
tedybear
Black Belt 5th Degree
Black Belt 5th Degree
 
Posts: 7251
Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2004 12:55 am
Location: Fulton, New York, on Earth

Next

Return to The Hundred Year War

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest