Wednesday, April 15, 2009

TAX DAY 2009

It's tax day! Hope you all finished up! Me? I got a nice letter from the Ohio Dept. of Taxation saying something along the lines of: "You owe back taxes -- lots of them -- so we're keeping your return. Please call us. Have a nice day."

Great. Anyways, it's a good reminder to show how your money is spent, especially considering the tea parties going on today:


That's right kids. The ungodly thought of paying for human services when we have so little money... especially when it's going to such important things like $200B for two unnecessary wars.

I wish I could find the graph today that had something to do with percentage of the government paid for by the wealthy. It's something like 70% of all taxes come from the top 20th percentile of the country, which makes us all go "Wow, they are paying too much." Meanwhile, they are making something like 60% of all the wealth in the country. Anyone help a sister out on this one?


Anonymous said...

2 unnecessary wars? Stop to think what would happen if pulled out of Afghanistan. Eventually Pakistan succumbs -- which is a nuclear power. We have no option but to stay there and fight, long term if necessary.

Taxes are paid even more lopsidedly than you suggest. According to the Office of Tax Analysis, the U.S. individual income tax is "highly progressive," with a small group of higher-income taxpayers paying most of the individual income taxes each year.

•In 2002 the latest year of available data, the top 5 percent of taxpayers paid more than one-half (53.8 percent) of all individual income taxes, but reported roughly one-third (30.6 percent) of income.

•The top 1 percent of taxpayers paid 33.7 percent of all individual income taxes in 2002. This group of taxpayers has paid more than 30 percent of individual income taxes since 1995. Moreover, since 1990 this group’s tax share has grown faster than their income share.

•Taxpayers who rank in the top 50 percent of taxpayers by income pay virtually all individual income taxes. In all years since 1990, taxpayers in this group have paid over 94 percent of all individual income taxes. In 2000, 2001, and 2002, this group paid over 96 percent of the total.

Something to think about when next the temptation strikes to bash the rich.

Doug said...

I found that graph here, Barry:

Jere Keys said...

Oh dear, Barry, you may have attracted some teabaggers.

In addition to the graph Douglas pointed out showing the HUGE income disparity that more than accounts for the disparate tax numbers, we should also remember that people with that kind of wealth have taken great advantage of the services provided by tax-payers. Greater, in most cases, than the demands on the system by the average person.

For example: if one makes his/her fortune in the production of goods, that person requires safe and usable roads, secure air and water shipping passageways, priority and professional customs representatives, and more; whereas the average Joe only benefits from these same government expenditures to a much lesser extent. Public land, energy, government business protections (like FDIC, police and fire), and government services (like bridge and road repair)... these things are all part of our common wealth, but-as a general rule-are used in disproportionately more ways by the wealthiest among us.

Anonymous said...

"provid[ing] for the common defense" is in the Preamble of our Constitution.

Where do "human services" show up?

Jere Keys said...

Also not in the Constitution: the air force, the electoral college, judicial review, public education, capitalism, marriage, or paper money. Yet, somehow, we've found it necessary in the 200+ years since the Constitution was drafted to incorporate some aspect of these ideas into the purpose, responsibilities and operation of the government.