Austerity Pushes Europe Into Its Seco...
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#24 Dec 9, 2012
Bob Schmahl wrote:
The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.
You are still an idiot that tells lies. Millionaires pay 4 times what the middle class pays on a percentage basis. The source is above. You have nothing to disprove anything I have said. Other than your lies.
Amused Slew

Kent, WA

#25 Dec 9, 2012
They make more and it's kinda pointless to tax the poor, they have NO MONEY DUMMY ~! WHAT A FOOL ! LMAOROTFU~!
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#26 Dec 9, 2012
Again: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#28 Dec 9, 2012
Bob Schmahl wrote:
Again: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.
You live in a f*cking dream land. Quit acting like a 4th grde girl and prove that the millionaires don't pay 4 times percentage wise what the middle class pay.
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#29 Dec 9, 2012
Dumb ass, what I keep telling you is: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.

You are really really dense.
Amused Slew

Kent, WA

#30 Dec 9, 2012
GRADE, dummy !

Again: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#31 Dec 9, 2012
Bob Schmahl wrote:
Dumb ass, what I keep telling you is: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.
You are really really dense.
Say it until you are blue in the face, it is still a lie. CNBC says so in the article above. Prove it wrong.
Amused Slew

Kent, WA

#32 Dec 9, 2012
GRADE, dummy !

Again: The poor pay a much higher percentage their income of total taxes than the rich.

It's apples and oranges and NOBODY IS "SAYING IT"...
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#34 Dec 9, 2012
The Romney campaign is in damage control mode today, trying to explain Romney telling wealthy donors in a private meeting that “there are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it.”

“These are people who pay no income tax,” Romney continued, in a video posted by Mother Jones.“My job is is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.” But who are the 47 percent of Americans who currently have no federal income tax liability?

Mostly, they are either too poor to qualify for even the lowest tax bracket (but still pay federal payroll tax, and state or local sales taxes, gas taxes, and excise taxes), or they benefit from tax credits for the working poor, the elderly, or students, as these charts from the Tax Policy Center show. Only 7 percent of the country is non-elderly and has no federal tax liability, and most of them make less than $20,000:


Here are the reasons for those who paid no federal income tax reaching that point:


In 2011, payroll tax receipts totaled $818 billion, only $200 billion less than was brought in by the federal income tax. Those Americans who paid payroll taxes, but had no income tax liability, still pay about 15 percent of their income, higher than the 13 percent Romney pays.

As ThinkProgress has explained, more and more income has become concentrated at the top of the income scale in the last few decades, so the wealthy have paid a larger share of federal taxes, because they have a larger share of the income.

Romney is hardly alone in his contempt for those who don’t have any federal income tax liability (even though people who fall into that category disproportionately live in Republican states). Over the last few years, many Republicans have explicitly called for finding a way to make the poor pay more, so that the number of federal income tax payers rises.
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#35 Dec 9, 2012
Those 47%: They Do Pay Their Share of Taxes

When people are poor (making minimum wage) or unemployed or students or retired or disabled, maybe they don’t pay very much in federal income taxes. But they pay the following other taxes:

Payroll taxes, including Social Security and Medicare (if they have a job).

State sales taxes (if they buy things in stores).

Local property taxes (either because they own a house or because they pay more in rent so the landlord can pay property taxes).

Excise taxes on things like gasoline.

Taxes and fees on drivers’ licenses, telephones (both land lines and cell phones), cable TV, permits for doing things, etc.

Almost all of those other taxes are regressive, meaning poor people pay a bigger percentage of their income on taxes than rich people do.

.


Let’s look at payroll taxes (social security and medicare). If you earn money, you pay social security a flat rate up until $110,000. Then you pay no more. So the poor and middle class pay 4.2 percent (plus the employer pays 6.2%). People who earn a lot of money pay nothing after 110K. People like Mitt Romney pay nothing to social security (because capital gains don’t count as ordinary income). If you have capital gains, you also pay about half the federal income tax rate.

I saw a graph recently that said recent U.S. government revenues include 41% from individual income taxes and 40% from payroll taxes. Let’s stipulate that 47% of poor people don’t pay income taxes. OK. What percentage of poor people pay payroll taxes? How much of his income from the last 10 years did Romney put into social security and medicare? Not very much. Probably close to zero. Plus he only paid 15% on his capital gains (minus his deductions for donating to the Mormons).

And what about sales taxes? Let’s say you earn about 20K and you spend all of your money. And the sales tax is 8%. That means 8% of your income goes to the state for sales tax. Let’s say you’re doing pretty well and you make 200K and you spend 100K in local stores (so you pay $800 in sales taxes (8%), but you made 200K). The rest you put in the bank or something. You pay only 4% of your income in sales taxes. That poor person who made a tenth as much as you paid 8%. You paid 4% because half your income was not subject to sales taxes. People like Bill Gates or Warren Buffett pay the same sales tax on a candy bar as anyone else, but if you look at the total amount they pay in sales tax, as a percentage of income, they pay much less than poor people.

Now let’s compare the 20K person to the 200K person. Suppose both of them use the same amount of gasoline to get to work and drive to stores and they both pay $200 in gas taxes per year (I’m just making up these numbers). To the poor person, that’s 1% of their income. To the rich person it’s 0.1% of their income.

Let’s look at retirees who paid income taxes their whole life and paid into social security and medicare. Is Romney saying they’re leeches? They’re collecting what was promised them.

And what about students studying at college, so they can get a decent job? Maybe they took out student loans and are working at a part time job. They’re planning to pay back every cent with interest. Is Romney calling them leeches, because they aren’t paying income taxes?

What about soldiers getting disability pay? Maybe they’re getting medical treatment at the VA. Does Romney call them leeches who only want a government handout?

Romney just called 47% of Americans leeches. I can’t tell you how pissed off I am.
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#36 Dec 9, 2012
(CNN)-- Americans are not a nation of moochers and helpless dependents. Those who are not paying federal income tax would gladly do so, because it would mean they have a decent-paying job.

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney is right that 47% of Americans don't pay federal income tax. But he is wrong to suggest almost half of Americans pay no tax at all and feel entitled to live off government handouts.

Romney said: "There are 47% of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47% who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. But that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what.... These are people who pay no income tax."


Teresa Ghilarducci

Opinion: Real conservatives can say they're sorry


Rick McGahey

It's true that some Americans don't pay federal income tax. But virtually all Americans pay some form of tax, whether it's sales, payroll, state income, or property tax.

Over 60% of those who don't pay income tax are working; they pay payroll tax, which goes to support Social Security and Medicare. Another 22% of those who don't pay income tax are the elderly; most of them don't work.

In fact, only about 8% of Americans pay neither federal income tax nor payroll tax, because they are unemployed, are students, or are disabled.

What is missing from all this talk about tax is the fact that although the rich pay higher taxes than the poor, middle-class people actually pay a higher percentage of their income in total taxes. True, federal income tax rates are progressive, with rates going to 35% for the top earners. But deductions and special treatment of capital gains reduce actual tax rates for the top earners. So what we end up with is upper-middle-class taxpayers paying the highest actual percentage of their income, over 31%, according to a 2010 study by the group Citizens for Tax Justice.

How did our tax system get so flat?

The payroll tax for Social Security is 12.4%(split between employer and employee). It's highly regressive, because only the first $110,100 of income is taxed. CEOs earning over $35 million per year have paid their entire annual Social Security tax bill before the end of their workday on January 2, while regular workers see this tax deducted from every check throughout the year.

Billionaire Warren Buffett points out that he pays a tax rate of only 17.8%, compared with his secretary's rate of 35.8%. Why? Because payroll taxes are capped and he gets a lower rate on his capital gains.

President Obama pushed to pass the "Buffett Rule" to help reduce this disparity, but Romney's vice-presidential running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan, opposed the rule, calling support for it "class warfare." As the Republicans use the term "class warfare," they also bring forth, pointedly, details on the wide gap in income and wealth distribution in our country.

Digging deeper into why 47% don't pay federal income tax, what we find are many former taxpayers: Twenty-two percent are the elderly, living mostly on Social Security, a benefit they got by working and paying payroll taxes. Others are unemployed or are paid close to the minimum wage, so they don't have enough income to file any taxes.
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#37 Dec 9, 2012
Why the Poor Pay No Federal Income Tax: A Wee Tutorial


—By Kevin Drum

| Mon Sep. 17, 2012 2:45 PM PDT

204

.

Is it true, as Mitt Romney says, that 47% of Americans don't pay federal income tax? Yes! That's mostly because they're either poor, elderly, or take advantage of tax credits for low-income workers. Details here. But why do these people pay no income tax? Ezra Klein breaks it down into Twitter-sized chunks:
■Rs have spent years cutting income taxes and increasing things like the Child Tax Credit. This means fewer people pay income taxes.
■So whenever you hear a stat like "47% don't pay income taxes," remember: Reagan and Bush helped build that.
■These tax cuts for the poor were partly in order to make further tax cuts for the rich political palatable.
■But now that fewer people pay income taxes as a result of GOP policies, they’re being called lazy and dependent.
■And thus the GOP's tax cuts are being used to make a case that the rich are overtaxed and that the less-rich are becoming dependent.
■Which thus leads to a policy agenda of tax cuts for the rich and cuts to social services for the non-rich.

Yep, that's about it. Also worth noting: the poor often pay higher state tax rates than the rich. Add in payroll taxes and excise taxes, instead of cherry picking only a single tax, and it turns out that the poor and the working class end up paying a fair chunk of their income in taxes. Not as big a chunk as the rich, it's true, but then, it strikes most of us as perfectly fair that the poor should pay lower tax rates than the rich. I wonder if this strikes Romney as fair too?
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#38 Dec 9, 2012
The psychology of Mitt Romney's apparent attack on 47 percent of Americans is fascinating. It’s all about the excuses the very rich make up to cover for their refusal to bear their fair share of the costs of maintaining civilization. Because, of course, the poor actually pay a higher share of their income in taxes than people like Romney do, it's just they don’t pay it in federal income tax.

The poorest 20 percent of America pays 17.4 percent of their income in state and federal taxes—in federal income and payroll taxes, sales taxes and other excise taxes and state income taxes. As we know, in the one year Romney has disclosed, he paid just under 13.8 percent in federal taxes, almost all of his income was not subject to payroll tax, and his state income tax bill was 4.1 percent for a total of 17.9 percent—Romney earned $21.6 million last year and paid only half a percent more in total taxes than the poorest people in the country. And that is in the one year he is willing to tell us about.

In the real world though, there are four types of households that don’t end up owing federal income tax—households that have income but it is simply too small to be taxed in that year—often because of a disruption of some kind, such as an illness or a period of unemployment. A large part of this group are families with children who can use the child tax credits. Then there are retirees—they make up 22 percent of those who pay no federal tax. The final large group are people who are not working for good reasons—students, people with disabilities and those who cannot find a job. Contrary to what Romney and his audience may think—the 47 percent is a cross section of ordinary Americans—white, Latino and African American, religious and secular, Democrats and Republicans. And they are concentrated in red states and Florida.

So Romney's attack is not so much an attack on people who support Obama as it is an attack on Americans who support Romney. Romney latched on to a line that is popular among some Republicans—that around half of American households do not pay income tax in a given year and this makes them irresponsible people (the subtext is these people shouldn’t be allowed to vote)—and then he made the bizarre mistake of assuming that those households all vote for President Obama.

Think about this for a minute—Romney has just described his attitude toward the majority of retired Americans, millions of working parents of young children, a significant number of military families, most students, most of the disabled and people who can’t find work with the following words—"[M]y job is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”

And, of course, millions of those same “dependent” people, at least as of yesterday, intend to vote for Mitt Romney for president. Without the support of those “dependent” people, those “people who believe they are victims,” who “lack personal responsibility,” the Republican Party wouldn’t elect a single person outside of a handful of wealthy enclaves.

So the question for the day is, who is going to tell Republican 47 percenters what their candidate for president and his financial backers really think of them?
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#39 Dec 9, 2012
Memo To Mitt Romney: The 47% Pay Taxes Too

A secret videotape of Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney talking at a private fundraising event earlier this year could revive—in virulent form— the debate Texas Gov. Rick Perry started last year when he complained of “the injustice that nearly half of all Americans don’t even pay any income tax.” The video, leaked to left-leaning Mother Jones (excerpts and a report here), captures the normally cautious Romney at his most candid and impolitic.

Here’s part of what he had to say:

There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that’s an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what…These are people who pay no income tax….”

Political suicide? I’ll leave it to the pundits to analyze the impact Romney’s comments will have on his election prospects.(It should be noted, however, that while Romney does have an edge among high-income voters, billionaire Warren Buffett is hardly the only rich guy supporting the Democratic incumbent. See Millionaire Towns For Obama.)

On 2011 Federal Income Tax Return, The Romneys Decide Horse Losses Are Personal Janet NovackForbes Staff

But since I write about tax and budget issues, let me make a few serious points about the 46.4% of American households who paid no federal income taxes for 2011. First of all, according to the Tax Policy Center, more than 60% of those non-income tax paying households did pay federal payroll taxes—meaning Social Security and Medicare taxes.(Considering all Americans households, including those that owed income tax, 62% paid more in payroll taxes than in federal income taxes.)

What of the 18.1% of U.S. households that paid neither income nor payroll taxes? More than half of them were headed by a senior–in other words, by someone who paid payroll taxes and likely some income taxes too, in the past.(No, the amount the elderly have paid in does not cover the cost of the Medicare benefits they are now getting. And that is true despite the fact that in a Romney TV ad attacking Obamacare’s cuts to the growth in Medicare spending, an announcer seems to suggest otherwise, intoning:“You paid into Medicare for years, every paycheck…. So now the money you paid for your guaranteed healthcare Is going to a massive new government program that’s not for you.”)

Of course, it goes without saying, that those folks who aren’t paying federal taxes are almost all paying state and local taxes—state sales taxes, real estate taxes (either on their homes or built into their rents) and possibly state income taxes too, since those taxes tend to exempt fewer poor families than does the federal income tax. If they buy gasoline, liquor or tobacco, or have telephones, they’re also feeding the federal purse.

Yes, there’s a serious tax policy issue here. The percentage of households owing federal individual income taxes has fallen in recent years in part because both Republicans and Democrats have looked to provide help for working families through the child credit, the earned income tax credit and other “tax expenditures,” rather than through more direct spending programs. That might not be the best way to do things. But note again that the largest group excluded from paying income tax
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#40 Dec 9, 2012
None of the garbage you spewed isproved that millionaires pay 4 times what the middle class pays. You are still an idiot and a liar.
Amused Slew

Kent, WA

#41 Dec 9, 2012
isproved


You are still an idiot and a liar.
Bob Schmahl

Minneapolis, MN

#42 Dec 9, 2012
Idiot Le Dumbo wrote:
None of the garbage you spewed isproved that millionaires pay 4 times what the middle class pays. You are still an idiot and a liar.
You are still crazy. What I've repeated over and over again - and provided proof of - is:

The poor pay a much higher percentage of their income in total taxes than the rich.

How many times do I have to prove you wrong before you give up and crawl back to wherever disgusting teabaggers go at night.
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#43 Dec 9, 2012
Bob Schmahl wrote:
<quoted text>
You are still crazy. What I've repeated over and over again - and provided proof of - is:
The poor pay a much higher percentage of their income in total taxes than the rich.
How many times do I have to prove you wrong before you give up and crawl back to wherever disgusting teabaggers go at night.
Millionaires pay 4 times what the middle class pays. Do you know how to read?
Amused Slew

Kent, WA

#44 Dec 9, 2012
You are still crazy. What I've repeated over and over again - and provided proof of - is:
The poor pay a much higher percentage of their income in total taxes than the rich.
How many times do I have to prove you wrong before you give up and crawl back to wherever disgusting teabaggers go at night.
Idiot Le Dumbo

Saint Paul, MN

#45 Dec 9, 2012
Amused Slew wrote:
You are still crazy. What I've repeated over and over again - and provided proof of - is:
The poor pay a much higher percentage of their income in total taxes than the rich.
How many times do I have to prove you wrong before you give up and crawl back to wherever disgusting teabaggers go at night.
You have not proven a god damned thing because you have not disproven the fact that millionaires pay 4 times what the middle class pays. You are still an idiot and a liar.

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