It’s also interesting to note that while Warren Buffett feels strongly about raising taxes on “the rich,” he has done a masterful job of avoiding them himself. Past taxes on dividends ranged as high as 91%, but Berkshire Hathaway has never paid a dividend, so Buffett has never paid a dime in dividend taxes on his own multi-billion-dollar holdings.<quoted text>
You hear that Bill Gross and Warren Buffett are willing to pay higher taxes, but do you ever hear about them actually overpaying their taxes? Do they ever voluntarily write the US Treasury a check for a million or so? Or do they make their statements about paying more just to satisfy the tax and spend Democrats and in these politicized IRS days get on the do not audit list?
And he has sold few shares, so he has avoided paying capital gains, as well.
He won’t be selling those shares and paying taxes on them down the road, either. He has pledged most of his fortune to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. That’s certainly a worthy thing to do.
However, his contribution came with a single string attached. The donation is contingent on charitable contributions remaining tax deductible.
In short, when it comes to taxes, you’d be well advised to do what Buffett does. And pay no attention to what he says.
Buffett made many wonderful deals (for himself) in the past when small mom-and-pop companies had to sell in order to pay the estate taxes. So of course Buffett wants higher tax rates – he doesn’t pay them. And his estate won’t pay them, either.
It is in Warren’s self-serving best interest to plead for higher tax rates – it gives him an advantage.