What tax rate did YOU pay?

Just a little fodder for Tax Day conversations:

Source: IRS

Average income of Top 400 tax filers, 1992: $46.8 million
Average income of Top 400, 2007: $344.76 million

Average tax rate for Top 400, 1992: 26.38 percent
Average tax rate for Top 400, 2007: 16.62 percent

Percent of total income that Top 400 earned through salaries and wages, 1992: 26.22
Percent of income that Top 400 earned through salaries and wages, 2007: 6.53

Cutoff to make Top 400, 1992: $22.76 million (1990 dollars)
Cutoff to make Top 400, 2007 $87.52 million (1990 dollars)

341 comments Add your comment

RW-(the original)

April 18th, 2011
5:47 pm

Looks like all the talk of changing rates on salary and wage earners is just a bunch of fun show mirror tricks.

Left wing management

April 18th, 2011
5:50 pm

Wealth envy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

WOW #1

April 18th, 2011
5:51 pm

“What tax rate did YOU pay?”

How about the 45% of those who didn’t pay ANY income taxes?

md

April 18th, 2011
5:56 pm

Shows me that money begets money……..has ever since I hit this planet.

Compounding is a wonderful thing if one actually has something to compound……….tangible goods very rarely compound.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
5:56 pm

wow…where’s your link?

Turbo did my Tax Calculations

April 18th, 2011
5:57 pm

I find it interesting to look at tax rate as a percentage of AGI versus as a percent of taxable income. Big difference.

RW-(the original)

April 18th, 2011
5:57 pm

Hillbilly Deluxe

April 18th, 2011
5:57 pm

Simple solution; tax all forms of income at the same rate. It’ll never happen, though.

Jay

April 18th, 2011
5:57 pm

How about the 45% of those who didn’t pay ANY income taxes?

Poverty envy!

WOW #2

April 18th, 2011
5:58 pm

“wow…where’s your link?”

Right here, Poop.

There are so many breaks that 45 percent of U.S. households will pay no federal income tax for 2010, according to estimates by the Tax Policy Center, a Washington think tank.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110417/ap_on_re_us/us_no_taxes

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:00 pm

Well that’s a question as complex to answer as the tax code itself, because of the various marginal rates, the phaseouts, tax loss carryforwards (a big one), investment losses not allowed, etc. But when you wrap it all together and just take compensation (which will artificially reduce the rate), the answer is 16.4% (income taxes only of course).

As I’ve said before (a 1000 times), drop the rate, broaden the base by eliminating deductions.

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 18th, 2011
6:01 pm

Smells like a combination of wealth envy and no income tax liability envy to me!!! Some are envious of the 400 while others are envious of the 40’s. :lol:

Couple of related websites that tries to breakdown where your federal tax dollars go:

http://www.thirdway.org/taxreceipt

Or the White House’s version:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/taxreceipt

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:02 pm

Oh, Jay, by the way, that’s on my real income, not my AGI.

WOW #3

April 18th, 2011
6:02 pm

Half of Americans believe the amount they pay in federal income taxes is too high, while 43% consider it about right and 4% too low. The 50% now calling their taxes “too high” is within the 46% to 53% range found each year since 2003. It is significantly lower than the 65% recorded in 2001, prior to implementation of former President George W. Bush’s first round of federal tax cuts.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/147152/Americans-Split-Whether-Taxes-High.aspx

Jay

April 18th, 2011
6:03 pm

From the Tax Policy Center, the source of that data point:

“About 45 percent of households will owe no federal income tax in 2010, according to our estimates. Half of them earn too little, while the other half — mostly middle- and lower-income households — will take advantage of tax credits such as the earned income credit, the child and child-care credits, the American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning credits, which help pay for college, and the saver’s credit, which subsidizes retirement saving.

But even citizens who pay no income tax still pay other kinds of taxes. They pay Social Security and Medicare taxes when they work, sales taxes when they buy things and property taxes on their homes. Drivers pay gasoline taxes, and smokers and drinkers pay excise taxes on tobacco and alcohol. According to our research, more than 75 percent of us will pay at least some form of federal tax in 2010.

Those who pay no federal taxes are mostly the low-income elderly or very poor families with children. Even about half of those with annual incomes under $10,000 pay some federal tax, most often payroll taxes on wages.”

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:04 pm

Jay, Left Wing Management was screaming earlier today that the Tax Policy Center is a biased source…. surprise….. (they were cited in a The Economist article I referenced). There’s just no pleasing some people.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:05 pm

“Couple of related websites that tries to breakdown where your federal tax dollars go:”

Yet, none of the links ever shows how much goes down the rabbit hole…………..

The problem isn’t only spending, but inefficient spending……………..

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
6:05 pm

What the news media missed is that hedge-fund managers don’t even pay 15 percent. At least, not currently. So long as they leave their money, known as “carried interest,” in the hedge fund, their taxes are deferred. They only pay taxes when they cash out, which could be decades from now for younger managers. How do these hedge-fund managers get money in the meantime? By borrowing against the carried interest, often at absurdly low rates—currently about 2 percent.

Lots of other people live tax-free, too. I have Donald Trump’s tax records for four years early in his career. He paid no taxes for two of those years. Big real-estate investors enjoy tax-free living under a 1993 law President Clinton signed. It lets “professional” real-estate investors use paper losses like depreciation on their buildings against any cash income, even if they end up with negative incomes like Trump.

Frank and Jamie McCourt, who own the Los Angeles Dodgers, have not paid any income taxes since at least 2004, their divorce case revealed. Yet they spent $45 million one year alone. How? They just borrowed against Dodger ticket revenue and other assets. To the IRS, they look like paupers.

In Wisconsin, Terrence Wall, who unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in 2010, paid no income taxes on as much as $14 million of recent income, his disclosure forms showed. Asked about his living tax-free while working people pay taxes, he had a simple response: Everyone should pay less.

WOW #4

April 18th, 2011
6:06 pm

“But even citizens who pay no income tax still pay other kinds of taxes. They pay Social Security and Medicare taxes when they work, sales taxes when they buy things and property taxes on their homes. Drivers pay gasoline taxes, and smokers and drinkers pay excise taxes on tobacco and alcohol. According to our research, more than 75 percent of us will pay at least some form of federal tax in 2010.”

Well no crap, Jay. Like I stated, INCOME TAX.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:06 pm

BTW, of course everyone pays those taxes. However, as a variety of centrist folks have pointed out, none of those go toward the general operation of our government. Or said another way, a full 45% of us don’t actually pay to support the operations of the federal government (among their other activities). That is just not a good policy for what should be obvious reasons, but many apparently miss it….

md

April 18th, 2011
6:07 pm

“Half of Americans believe the amount they pay in federal income taxes is too high, while 43% consider it about right and 4% too low.”

Too high must be those that actually pay something……..about right are those that pay nothing……and the 4% are the ones that pay nothing but have a conscience………..

Southern Comfort (aka The Man)

April 18th, 2011
6:09 pm

md

It’s all one big rabbit hole. Those who can afford the accountants and lawyers know it. That’s why they are legislating it down to those below them. :)

//sarc//

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:09 pm

“Percent of total income that Top 400 earned through salaries and wages, 1992: 26.22
Percent of income that Top 400 earned through salaries and wages, 2007: 6.53″

By the way, the reason for this should be obvious…. and the solution obvious as well, but liberals constantly object…. so we go on engaging in insanity.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:09 pm

Well Jay, I didn’t make near what they made.

And I got way more of my income from wages and salaries than they did.

But I paid about the same rate they did on AGI. But when it comes to taxable income, I paid a waaaay higher rate than they did.

Hey, Everybody, LOOK!

Trickle-up economics!

Deadbeats at the top having their way paid by those at the bottom!

Millionaires and billionaires having everyone else pick up their tab!

And…. they’re not Fair!

BlahBlahBlah

April 18th, 2011
6:09 pm

You could tax them all at 100% and still not come close to fixing our debt problem.

getalife

April 18th, 2011
6:11 pm

Poverty envy is right but look at how fast they bow down to billionaires.

Jay

April 18th, 2011
6:11 pm

Actually, jm, a good portion of the FICA surtax on working and middle class Americans HAS gone to general operations.

The same people who claim that 45 percent pay no income taxes — thus embracing the claim that the FICA tax isn’t an income tax — will also turn around and claim that the Social Security Trust Fund is empty because all those “non-income taxes” were spent just like income taxes.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:12 pm

I looked for more up to date data. Looks as if the IRS has been on vacay since 2007.

Jackie

April 18th, 2011
6:13 pm

The so-called consevatives love to spout that nonsense about Americans who pay no taxes.
Do they really believe that anyone who works, buys or sells anything pay some form of Federal and State taxes?

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:14 pm

Jay 6:11 – I would agree, historically, yes, they did. Not today though. SS is break even / tiny surplus / tiny deficit.

1811/1801 - 0311/0317

April 18th, 2011
6:14 pm

Jay:

Why don’t you add all of these and then come up with the “real percentage” of their income Americans pay. Just think of how many times the same dollar is taxed !!

Accounts Receivable Tax

Building Permit Tax

Capital Gains Tax

CDL license Tax

Cigarette Tax

Corporate Income Tax

Court Fines (indirect taxes)

Dog License Tax

Federal Income Tax

Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)

Fishing License Tax

Food License Tax

Fuel permit tax

Gasoline Tax (42 cents per gallon)

Hunting License Tax

Inheritance Tax Interest expense (tax on the money)

Inventory tax IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)

IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)

Liquor Tax

Local Income Tax

Luxury Taxes

Marriage License Tax

Medicare Tax

Property Tax

Real Estate Tax

Septic Permit Tax

Service Charge Taxes

Social Security Tax

Road Usage Taxes (Truckers)

Sales Taxes

Recreational Vehicle Tax

Road Toll Booth Taxes

School Tax

State Income Tax

State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)

Telephone federal excise tax

Telephone federal universal service fee tax

Telephone federal, state and local surcharge taxes

Telephone minimum usage surcharge tax

Telephone recurring and non-recurring charges tax

Telephone state and local tax

Telephone usage charge tax

Toll Bridge Taxes

Toll Tunnel Taxes

Traffic Fines (indirect taxation)

Trailer registration tax

Utility Taxes

Vehicle License Registration Tax

Vehicle Sales Tax

Watercraft registration Tax

Well Permit Tax

Workers Compensation Tax

md

April 18th, 2011
6:14 pm

“The same people who claim that 45 percent pay no income taxes — thus embracing the claim that the FICA tax isn’t an income tax”

Nonsense……….fica is a wash as it is paid by all. Trying to use it as if only those that don’t pay income taxes is stretching it……………

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
6:14 pm

You could tax them all at 100% and still not come close to fixing our debt problem.

Absolutely right. Yet the objective is not to pay all debts next year it is to reduce the deficit. Your point is a red herring. Just as most people could not pay their mortgages with a 100% of a single years income. Yet over 30 years most people are able to pay absent unusual circumstances.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:15 pm

Keep Up

The best shelters money can bribe!

I mean…. buy…..

WOW

I believe the point made here is the Treasury’s general fund receives money from a variety of sources. One is thru income tax. The other is thru payroll (Social Security) taxes. People at all income levels pay that (as you know, it taps out at just over $100K earned income). Congress then takes the excess contributions and uses them as general fund revenue.

So the working poor and middle class do see taxes on their earnings used in the general fund. And for many, many Americans, they pay a far, far higher of their income in payroll tax than do the 400 Jay referenced.

So they may not pay tax on their 1040, but they most definitely contribute thousands to the General Fund via other avenues.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:16 pm

BTW, convenient that the data stopped in 2007. Top incomes dropped significantly after since most income comes from cap gains / dividends / interest. Of course, 2010 may have been a good year for them (should have been), but hard to tell without more up to date info….

md

April 18th, 2011
6:16 pm

Well……..S&P obviously thinks we are on are way to not paying the mortgage…………

Left wing management

April 18th, 2011
6:17 pm

jm: “Left Wing Management was screaming earlier today that the Tax Policy Center is a biased source…. surprise”

It was the Tax Foundation I said was biased, not the Tax Policy Center.

There was this little flap back in ‘08 when they were pushing the meme that US corporate taxes were too high. Turns out, it’s closer to the truth to say the US is a corporate tax haven:

Tax Foundation and Competitive Environments: more bunk!, by ataxingmatter: The Tax Foundation is busy again pushing its latest propaganda idea–that the US has such high corporate taxes that it stifles competition and hurts our economy–with a new “competeusa.com” organization.

Wrong. Fact is, though our tax laws include statutory rates that are fairly high (35% for corporations earning about $18 million or more annually) but generally in the same ballpark as those of other developed western nations, the actual tax rates paid by US corporations are extraordinarily low, around 6%. Remember the latest GAO report (reported elsewhere on ataxingmatter) that shows that two-thirds of US corporations pay no federal income tax. That’s not just the ones that are losing money, but also many corporations that have record high profits (including some Big Oil companies) that end up paying next to nothing in taxes.

http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2008/08/the-greek-menac.html

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:19 pm

KEEP 6:14 – YOU COULD TAKE ALL (100%) THEIR MONEY NEXT YEAR AND NOT EVEN CLOSE THE DEFICIT. Forget about paying off the debt.

The only way to close the deficit without very big spending cuts, is for very big middle class tax increases. The middle class has been asleep during the party and is about to be handed the bill. They should stay more alert next time. Hopefully the lesson will be learned.

But instead of insisting on paying the debt down, crazy liberals want to perpetuate the problems forever.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:20 pm

LWM 6:17 – I get that corp tax revenue is low. But the system is totally messed up and needs fixing. Lower the rate, eliminate international taxation of income, and eliminate loopholes and deductions.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:22 pm

Jay

That data MUST be faulty, ’cause everyone knows gazillionaires pay half their income in taxes, don’tcha’ know?

I know that for a fact, as I’ve read it here many times.

So seriously, given that 94% of this group’s income is NOT subject to income tax, can anyone make the case that they need another tax break? That that 6% of their income, taxed at lower rates then it now is, is crucial to America’s economic well being?

Seems to me they’ve amassed far more wealth than many realize, in spite of the prohibitive income taxes they’ve been paying. //sarc//

1811/1801 - 0311/0317

April 18th, 2011
6:23 pm

“In Libya, a glimpse of a new world order”

I was gone all day and missed the first topic.

What it means on an interntional scale is if you call 911 don’t expect a police officer to show up.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:23 pm

LWM 6:17 – Fact: we have the highest corporate tax in the world (or the 2nd highest, depending somewhat on Japan’s decision post earthquake).

Fact: the deductions and loopholes and swiss cheese corporate tax code distorts economic behavior, rewards poor investments, and penalizes good investments and profitable enterprises.

What do you want? The status quo or a cleaner simpler tax code that produces the same or more revenue with a lower rate and more efficient economy?

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
6:23 pm

jm, despite your yelling, do you have any facts for your claim? Tax cuts have resulted in 48% of our deficits. Entitlements: 15%. See: http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=966

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
6:25 pm

md

April 18th, 2011
6:26 pm

“So seriously, given that 94% of this group’s income is NOT subject to income tax, can anyone make the case that they need another tax break?”

Yes, they do…….if we keep insisting that we have tax breaks (right or wrong), then we need to do it across the board……..this class warfare crap is morally wrong……….either we all live here and need to contribute or we don’t.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:26 pm

Scout

“What it means on an interntional scale is if you call 911 don’t expect a police officer to show up.”

Sure they will. They just won’t be American cops protecting European interests.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:27 pm

Keep 6:23 – I’ve posted them repeatedly. Go back and look….. from today, or last week….

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:29 pm

Keep 6:23 – if I must, though you’ll never ever get it….

“In 2005 the top 5% earned over $145,000. If you took all the income of people over $200,000, it would yield about $1.89 trillion, enough revenue to cover the 2012 bill for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security—but not the same bill in 2016, as the costs of those entitlements are expected to grow rapidly. The rich, in short, aren’t nearly rich enough to finance Mr. Obama’s entitlement state ambitions—even before his health-care plan kicks in.”

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704621304576267113524583554.html?mod=WSJ_hp_mostpop_read

Left wing management

April 18th, 2011
6:29 pm

jm: “The status quo or a cleaner simpler tax code that produces the same or more revenue with a lower rate and more efficient economy?”

Well it’s the mega-earners and some in the corporate world who are happiest with the status quo, not me.

I’m all for simplicity: tax the wealthy more than the poor. But given the sacred cow among GOP circles which prohibits even the discussion of tax hikes, I’m skeptical that we’ll get anywhere.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:29 pm

Of course, there is ambiguity lurking in phrases like “borne a little a more” and “give back a little bit more”. Were individuals at every income level taxed at a flat rate of, say, 20%, the wealthy would bear and pay back more as a matter of course. Twenty percent of $200,000 is a bigger number than 20% of $20,000. What Mr Obama means is that the wealthy ought to give up a larger percentage of their income. It’s rather less intuitive that fairness demands that the wealthy not only pay more in taxes, but pay a larger percentage of income. But let’s accept that fairness does require it. Anyway, high-earners in America do pay higher rates. In 2008, the top 1% paid 38% of all federal income taxes, and the top 5% paid 58%. Indeed, America is the industrialised world’s champion of income-tax progressivity! If any country’s upper-crust pays its fair share, America’s does.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2011/04/obamas_budget_plan

Left wing management

April 18th, 2011
6:31 pm

By the way, did you hear Mr. Ayn Rand Groupie himself has weighed in in FAVOR of rolling back the Bush-era tax cuts?

Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan is stepping up his call for Congress to let the Bush-era tax cuts lapse. Oops, guess another icon of the right will have to fall among the outcasts.

In an appearance Sunday on ABC’s “Meet the Press,” Mr. Greenspan used his strongest words yet to urge lawmakers to let them expire. The risk of a U.S. debt crisis, he said, is just too big. Mr. Greenspan, who retired from the Federal Reserve in 2006, had endorsed the cuts back in 2001 championed by then-President George W. Bush.

“This crisis is so imminent and so difficult that I think we have to allow the so-called Bush tax cuts all to expire. That is a very big number,” he said, referring to how much the U.S. government could save from letting income taxes go back up to levels last seen under former President Bill Clinton.

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2011/04/17/greenspan-steps-up-call-to-end-bush-era-tax-cuts/?mod=WSJBlog

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:32 pm

LWM 6:29 – because liberals will scream if you say: I’m going to drop the corporate tax to 20% instead of 35% but close a million loopholes.

Instead, they scream “corporate handouts!”. Favoritism! Just like the GA Tax Reform debate. Oh yes, and the biggest tax break trough pigs in America are the middle class. Ie, us. We have met the enemy, and it is ourselves.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:33 pm

md

But isn’t this latest proposal – the Ryan Plan – doesn’t it have the effect of not being across the board, as it lowers the top rate by a greater percentage than the other rates? Kinda guessing here, as he has not said what the six consolidated brackets will be.

We also tax 100 percent of most workers’ eanings with SS tax. For the wealthy, it’s a fraction.

So we don’t have an across the board system now, nor does the Ryan Plan institute one. It picks winners and losers (sounds socialistic, doesn’t it? ).

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:33 pm

LWM 6:31 – of course I did, I was actually watching MTP. What you fail to mention is he says the reversion to pre-Bush tax rates is for EVERYONE, NOT JUST THE RICH. Lest you forget, the middle class (and poor) got a huge tax cut also. Greenspan was advocating a reversion to old tax rates, again, on everyone, not just the rich.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:34 pm

“Former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan is stepping up his call for Congress to let the Bush-era tax cuts lapse.”

Notice the difference………let them all expire………vs this only the “rich” crap the dems have latched on to…….for very obvious reasons.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:36 pm

Oh, and BTW, going back the old tax rates will probably still leave a $1.3 Trillion hole. The problem is so big as to almost be unfathomable. The avalanche is coming and it is going to bury everyone.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:37 pm

md 6:34 – indeed, and exactly. There’s not much tax revenue in taxing the rich. You have to increase taxes on the middle and lower-middle classes to even begin to get additional tax revenue. It may suck, but its true.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:37 pm

Paul,

And there in lies the problem of a 2 party system………both advocate for voting blocks vs doing what is best for the country. Neither puts out a plan for “all”……just “some”……..usually the ones they can count on voting in their favor.

As usual, they are trying to buy votes……………………

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:39 pm

md 6:37 – that’s why we used to count on Presidential “leadership”, because he’s the one guy that represents the whole damn country. But this current president “whatever goes” doesn’t seem to give a crap and is passing the buck entirely….

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:39 pm

make that: Obama’s passing $5 Trillion bucks. What a stooge.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
6:40 pm

“…George Bush gave us Obama and I’m not happy about it.” — D. Trump

Oh oh…there’s that dang Blame Bush theme from them Dems…oh wait.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:41 pm

jm………when we have a President that advocates for “spreading the wealth” as part of his platform, no way can that guy ever represent “everybody”.

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:42 pm

Happy Tax Day Everyone. I’m out. And I guess I’m the only one to answer Jay’s original question, even at all. Somehow I’m not surprised…. (or maybe everyone else elected to decide it was a rhetorical question, but that’s pretty sad because people should look and see)

Paul

April 18th, 2011
6:42 pm

md

You’re preaching to the choir on that one. Problem is, even if we had another viable party, we’d probably end up with three parties selling favors!

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:42 pm

md 6:41 – he doesn’t represent anyone anymore, I don’t think…. shaping up as a 1 termer if the R’s pick anyone half-decent (which is subject to debate)

Jonas

April 18th, 2011
6:45 pm

T.C. Memo. 2009-134
UNITED STATES TAX COURT
COX ENTERPRISES, INC. & SUBSIDIARIES, Petitioner v.
COMMISSIONER OF INTERNAL REVENUE, Respondent
Docket No. 18312-06. Filed June 9, 2009.

And to all a good night.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:47 pm

“The ration book is one of the most cherished of subsidies on the island, but President Raul Castro has repeatedly said it is unsustainable, and a disincentive to work.”

Even the ultimate socialists understand that system doesn’t work…………..hellooooooooo.

md

April 18th, 2011
6:49 pm

“Problem is, even if we had another viable party, we’d probably end up with three parties selling favors!”

I concur………and with 3, it is human nature for 2 to gang up on 1……..depending on the cause.

Doggone/GA

April 18th, 2011
6:53 pm

““Problem is, even if we had another viable party, we’d probably end up with three parties selling favors!””

In a two party dominant system the only thing a viable 3rd party does it ensure the defeat of candidates on THEIR side. And no matter how many parties there are, at some point it comes down to a vote….and in any vote there are only 2 parties: yes or no

jm

April 18th, 2011
6:53 pm

From IRS 2008

Percentile: Top 0.1% / 1% / 5% / 10% / 25% / 50%

AGI: 9.96 / 20.00 / 34.73 / 45.77 / 67.38 / 87.25

Share of Income Tax: 18.47 / 38.02 / 58.72 / 69.94 / 86.34 / 97.30

Richest, see that? Top 0.1%, 9.96% of AGI and 18.47% of tax revenue. Top 1%, 20% of AGI and 38.02% of Income taxes.

How on gods green earth is that not already fair? If taxes have to go up, they have to go up on everyone.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

April 18th, 2011
6:54 pm

Well, I paid my fair share. That’s all I got to say. Anyway, why ask such a nosy question? Taxes is suppose to be a big secret. Sure, we talk about them and complain about them but we never tell what we make and what we pay. That’s why a guy that made $2 million can get on here and complain about how unfair the tax system is. When the truth be known, he probly paid maybe $400. But he don’t want to pay nothing. He wants the same free ride the people in the 45% got.

A great poet—or maybe it was Sister Dusty—once said it all about taxes:

Don’t tax you
Don’t tax me
Tax that fellow
Behind the tree.

That kind of says it all. Have a good night everybody.

Union

April 18th, 2011
6:57 pm

funny.. most people tend to forget the employer pays matching federal taxes.. so take whatever you had come out and double it..

D

April 18th, 2011
6:58 pm

You know something is majorly screwed up when a person in the top 400’s (making obviously $87.5 million or more) is lower than my tax rate of ~19% and I make about 50K.
Now that is f-ed up no matter how you slice it.

Jay

April 18th, 2011
7:02 pm

“Nonsense……….fica is a wash as it is paid by all. Trying to use it as if only those that don’t pay income taxes is stretching it……………”

No, that post is nonsense. It is not paid by all. If the average income among the Top 400 was $344.76 million, they didn’t pay FICA on $344.66 million of it.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

April 18th, 2011
7:04 pm

Union…employers pay a match up to the 100k+ limit only on some withholding (basically medicare and FICA) not on income tax. And the self-employed pay both employer’s and employee’s share.

md

April 18th, 2011
7:06 pm

“You know something is majorly screwed up when a person in the top 400’s (making obviously $87.5 million or more) is lower than my tax rate of ~19% and I make about 50K.
Now that is f-ed up no matter how you slice it.”

Depends on how one looks at it…………that person paid more in dollars……….yet is still only one person.

Wonder which one is more of a problem, the one obviously paying more than his share or the one not paying as much…………..

If one looks at it as a 1 to 1 equation, there are an awful lot of folks not toting their share of the water…………….

Left wing management

April 18th, 2011
7:06 pm

jm: “Lest you forget, the middle class (and poor) got a huge tax cut also. Greenspan was advocating a reversion to old tax rates, again, on everyone, not just the rich ”

I don’t think you’d find any serious observer on the left who would disagree that they have to go up for everyone. The question here is time frame. Everyone from Krugman to Bookman has said that once the economy is back on track rates will have to increase on the middle classes, too. But right now, while the middle classes are overloaded with debt and many are under-/unemployed, it’s only sensible that the higher income earners should be expected to pay more, considering they have fared extremely well on the whole through this entire crisis, and preceding it.

md

April 18th, 2011
7:08 pm

“No, that post is nonsense. It is not paid by all. If the average income among the Top 400 was $344.76 million, they didn’t pay FICA on $344.66 million of it.”

They paid fica on their share of fica in relation to benefits received…………..there is a cap on fica because there is a corresponding cap on benefits.

So yes, fica is paid by all and is a wash in the discussion of “income taxes”.

Union

April 18th, 2011
7:09 pm

good.. to correct myself and clarify.. federal insurance.. fica.. thank you

Jay

April 18th, 2011
7:09 pm

again, jm, those number are for income taxes only, excluding FICA, fuel taxes, etc. You can’t isolate one source of federal revenue and pretend that’s all people pay.

Union

April 18th, 2011
7:11 pm

are we talking about the top 400 of the estimated 138 million taxpayers out there?

Jay

April 18th, 2011
7:11 pm

Fine, md. As I’ve asked you before:

If FICA can’t be considered an income tax — if “there is a cap on fica because there is a corresponding cap on benefits” — then surely you agree that the Social Security Trust Fund has trillions of dollars sitting in it, right?

Paul

April 18th, 2011
7:12 pm

md

I understood you concentrated on the percentage of the bracket – 35%, 20%, whatever, to argue the wealthy paid more of a marginal percentage so it’s not fair?

Now, when it’s shown that many middle income people pay a higher overall rate then the wealthy, you change to absolute dollars?

Can’t have it both ways.

If it wasn’t you taking that position, my mistake. But an awful lot on this blog have taken that position in the past and they’ve been rather quiet on that in the face of this new data.

fascist gopher

April 18th, 2011
7:12 pm

China, your’e fired!

Paul

April 18th, 2011
7:13 pm

D

April 18th, 2011
7:14 pm

@md

I don’t know the way I look at it, I’m fairly around the middle class (maybe lower middle) when I’m taxed 19% on my 50K income that leaves about 40K in my pocket. Enough to pay the rent (in Los Angeles) food and some basic living expenses. Last time I had a “vacation” was over 2 years ago and if I stop working, I’ll be more or less broke and homeless in about 2 months.

A person making 87.5 mil taxed at double my rate (so 38%, which is about the average in Europe mind you). Will still leave them with 54 million and 250K. I’m pretty sure there’s very little they still won’t wholesomely enjoy with 54.25 million that they would with 70 million. Maybe they’ll have one less beach house in the hamptons that they go and visit 2 days in the year.

I don’t know, I don’t have all the answers but this always brings up the thoughts that in the 50s and 60s the income tax rate was about 90% and the rich were still rich and still doing the “rich stuff”. And see what America was at that period! Stuff got done, stuff got built.

md

April 18th, 2011
7:15 pm

“If FICA can’t be considered an income tax”

Who said it isn’t an “income” tax……sure it is…….but to say those that pay no tax on agi do pay tax because they pay fica is disingenuous……when all pay fica, it becomes a wash……..but all do not pay tax on agi.

The discussion is only relevant to income tax on agi income……fica has no bearing in the equation.

Jay

April 18th, 2011
7:18 pm

But all DON’T pay FICA. If you agree that it is an income tax, md, with its proceeds being used to fund general ops (which it is), then why is that tax levied only on earned income and only on that income below $107,000?

poison pen

April 18th, 2011
7:20 pm

Jay

April 18th, 2011
5:57 pm
How about the 45% of those who didn’t pay ANY income taxes?

Poverty envy!

Jay, is GE claiming poverty now?????????

@@

April 18th, 2011
7:20 pm

Me personally?

ZERO! But that didn’t stop me from contributing on a personal level.

Better question….how much in hard-earned tax dollars was wasted or unaccounted for by the federal government?

Hundreds of billions.

Didn’t Obama say he was gonna look into waste and duplication? Just like everything else, he’s off to a slow start.

Mark in mid-town

April 18th, 2011
7:20 pm

Jay,

The effective tax rate for all federal taxes is what matters, not just the effective income tax rate. According to the CBO, in 1992 the effective federal tax rate for the top 1% was 30.6%. In 2006, the effective federal tax rate for the top 1% was 31.2%. And for what it’s worth, the effective total federal tax rate was considerably higher for the bottom 80% in 1992 than it was in 2006. So the reality is that the total effective tax rate for the top 1% has largely stayed the same, while it’s gone down considerably for the bottom 80% who comprise the vast majority of the country. For the bottom 20%, the total effective federal tax rate was 8.0% in 1992. It was down nearly in half to 4.3% in 2006 for the bottom 20%.

md

April 18th, 2011
7:21 pm

“Now, when it’s shown that many middle income people pay a higher overall rate then the wealthy, you change to absolute dollars?”

I don’t think any one can argue that the progressive tax structure is “fair”……it isn’t and more than likely never will be. Just as life isn’t “fair” and never will be.

But for folks to argue that the rich should be taxed at a higher rate just because they have more is morally wrong…………….they are still one person, and we all have one vote………now, one wants to give folks votes according to how much tax they pay, “fair” might come into the equation.

I’m basing my argument on people……..not money…..we all should have the same obligation to society……….

Paul

April 18th, 2011
7:23 pm

Jay

If you were having this exchange with Harry I’d say you were trying beat my five-page record in trying to get a straight answer! I know I shouldn’t speak of the absent, but I’ve a feeling he’ll see this anyhow -

But with md you may get an ‘okay, I see now. Seems contradictory. I don’t have an answer, but I see what you’re saying.”

md

April 18th, 2011
7:23 pm

“only on that income below $107,000?”

Why keep paying more? The corresponding benefit also has a cap…………..as originally designed.

Paul

April 18th, 2011
7:25 pm

Mark 7:20

Citation?

Midori

April 18th, 2011
7:26 pm

Paul,

I “almost” pitied Harry.

Five pages of you trying to get him to man up and admit you didn’t say what he said you said.

A lot of that goes on here.

USMC dawg

April 18th, 2011
7:27 pm

“As I’ve said before (a 1000 times), drop the rate, broaden the base by eliminating deductions.”-JM

Sorry JM, that makes way too much sense, I can’t believe Liberals like Jay are still trying to “piecemeal” our “patchwork” of a tax code for a fix as though that is the answer to our problems.

Just raising the taxes on producers will not correct our humongous entitlement spending problem.

What was that John F. Kennedy said?

“Ask NOT what your country can do for you, but WHAT you can do for your country.”

Jay

April 18th, 2011
7:30 pm

Oh, so you’re paying that FICA for a defined benefit, md?

Then surely those people who paid all those surplus trillions for the last quarter century to pre-pay their defined benefit program will get credit for that, right?

jconservative

April 18th, 2011
7:30 pm

Actually I paid $0.00 Federal and State income taxes. Loopholes.

All created under G w Bush. Thanks George.

@@

April 18th, 2011
7:33 pm

Paul:

I read the exchange between you and Harry. Don’t know why you’re having such a problem with his response.

It was the GOTCHA game. You know ALL about that game.

What….is no one else entitled to play?