Guess Who's Not Paying Their Fair Share

President Obama and the other liberal Democrats in Washington are right:  If we’re ever going to get control of this debt crisis mess there’s going to have to be “shared sacrifice.”  And Americans who have been getting off easy when it comes to paying income tax are going to have to start kicking in their “fair share,” another phrase liberal Democrats use a lot.

In case you think I’m referring to the top one percent of wage earners, or the top five percent or ten percent, in case you think I’m talking about those “millionaires and billionaires” who fly around in private jets, think again.

The top 50 percent of all wage earners – very few of whom live in multi-million dollar mansions and fly off to vacation villas in G-5s — pay about 97 percent of all federal income taxes, which means that roughly half the folks pay for just about everything.  The other half pays for just about nothing.  Yes, they pay payroll tax and sales tax and if they own a home, property tax.  But they pay no federal income tax, and because of that they’re not kicking in much to get us out of the debt crisis we find ourselves in.

And yes, we know that the reason they don’t pay federal income tax is because they don’t make a lot of money, and when you couple that with all the deductions they get, they’re left with a tax bill totaling zip.

But, there’s something inherently unfair when only half the American people are called upon to pull the load. The half that pays no income tax gets the same benefits as everybody else.  They get to use the same interstate highways, they get the protection of the same military, they can go to the same national parks.  When the president says we need to raise taxes on the “rich,” a lot of them say, good idea, Mr. President.  Why not?  As George Bernard Shaw so eloquently put it:  Any government that robs Peter to pay Paul, can always count on the support of Paul.

Maybe the flat tax is an idea whose time has finally come.  A low tax rate, something around 17 percent sounds good.  No deductions.  The more you make, the more tax you pay.  That way everyone has skin in the game.  Everyone is contributing.

It’ll never happen, of course, not as long as liberal Democrats are allowed to hold office.  They demand a progressive tax, where the rich not only pay more taxes, but pay them at a higher rate than everyone else.  Success is a four letter word to a lot of libs. Soaking the well-off is in their DNA.

But maybe, to get this debt crisis behind us, just maybe everyone will agree to a lower tax rate for business and individuals along with the elimination of loopholes, which probably would bring in more tax revenue.  It wouldn’t be a flat tax, but it would be a flatter tax.  And that would be a step in the right direction.

Finally, a piece of advice for liberal Democrats:  stop vilifying the so-called wealthy.  Without them, we would be in an even bigger financial mess.  The top one percent of wage earners pay about 38 percent of all federal income tax.  They’ve been forking over more than their fair share for quite a while now.  Painting them as greedy bastards who don’t care about anybody but themselves, is nothing more than cheesy class warfare politics, an art form liberal Democrats, unfortunately, have fine tuned over the years.

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  • Kathie Ampela

    Bernie,

    Good analysis on Bill’s show last night. The media are inventing the narrative that Obama is the fiscally responsible one and the GOP are obstructing any deal by saying no on new taxes. (Sorry, I disagree that the MSM are merely following Obama’s position. You were being far too kind. Remember, people’s social lives are at stake here…musn’t have those cocktail party invites dry up!) Both you and Brit Hume underestimate the power of new media. Hume spoke of a similar situation 16 years ago but failed to mention the absolute power the Clinton WH had over media output in those years. People who are sophisticated enough to know what’s going on are not falling for any media b.s. The people who aren’t paying attention are not going to give a flying crap about the debt ceiling debate. The only thing they know are high unemployment, sky high gas at the pump and soaring food prices. People know when bellies are full and wallets are fat…and when they are not. They don’t need to know anything else. Who are they more likely to blame then they vote in 2012?

    One final thought..it’ll be fun to see the blatant Obama cheerleading on “Face the Nation” when new substitute host Norah O’Donnell fills in for Schieffer. I’m always up for a good laugh.

  • Nancye

    Brendan said:

    Karl Marx made such suggestions but I have never heard any serious economist suggest such a thing. Obama and his neo-communist friends seem not to even care if their plans will work. It seems they care more about being “fair” than they care about the effect of their plans on the economy.

    ****************************************************************

    You got it!!! Obama IS a Marxist along with all his minions.

  • Brendan Horn

    It is sad that journalists don’t think of the most obvious question when interviewing Obama. Obama talks about making rich people pay their “fair share” but never defines what he means by fair share. The obvious question for Obama is: What is the fair share for the rich? It seems like Obama thinks that the fair share is close to 100% of all taxes. Thus he must think it fair that some people pay no share. Does it make sense that some people’s fair share is 0%?

    Obama’s ridiculous plan for healing the economy is taxing the wealthy. He thinks this will solve everything. I have never heard an economist suggest that taxing the prosperous will lead to great prosperity for a nation. Karl Marx made such suggestions but I have never heard any serious economist suggest such a thing. Obama and his neo-communist friends seem not to even care if their plans will work. It seems they care more about being “fair” than they care about the effect of their plans on the economy.

  • Scott

    I still cannot figure out the liberal mentality that taxing the rich even more so than they already are will somehow make their lives better. How would making a person, such as Steve Jobs, fork over a greater portion of the money that they have rightfully earned personally make my life better? The answer is, it wouldn’t. Not mine nor anyone else.

    Liberals take pleasure at being unhappy, in fact, they seem to wallow in it. They do not like to see others happy as well and seemingly go to great lengths to ensure others partake in their misery (whether it be real or perceived). So to massage those feelings of pleasure while attempting to make others people miserable, Obama plays the class warfare card and liberals buy into it every time.

    But the whole root of the economic problems that we’re having is not due to wealthy people not paying enough taxes. The root of problem is a government that has continually, year after year, spent more money than it takes in. Between insanely bloated entitlement programs (thanks to FDR and the monster called Social Security that he created) and the fact that 47% of the people in this country do not pay taxes, it’s no wonder that we’re looking more like Europe everyday. I have to live within a budget and there’s no reason our government should too WITHOUT raising taxes.

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  • Neal Angel

    This whole liberal notion of “social justice” starts with the assumption that the wealthy obtained their wealth through nefarious means. While there are indeed some drug dealers & scam artists enjoying their ill-gotten gains, being rewarded for contributing something of value to our society is not a crime.

    By the same token, not asking the bottom half to share in the tax burden sets up a moral hazard where Paul gets elected over Peter every time. Paul’s job then is not to act in the best interests of society at large, but to simply give his constituents what they want.

  • Wil Burns

    Report: News Corp. Paid No Taxes After Profiting $10B (Yet Rec’d $4.5B In Refunds)
    By: malterwitty

    Well Bernie, It appears that the hits keep coming. David Cay Johnston is a columnist for Reuters who recently took a look at the corporate finances of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp., and what he has reported is certain to raise some eyebrows. His column published yesterday suggests that over the last four years, the media conglomerate earned $10 billion dollars and received $4.5 billion in federal refunds after paying zero taxes.

    Fair?

    • will swoboda

      Hey Will, I wonder how many people Murdoch employs? I’m 61 years old and I’ve never collected a pay check from a poor guy.
      Your friend in Baltimore, Will Swoboda

    • Bruce A.

      Not bad at all. Maybe he got his cue from General Electric, how much in taxes did they avoid paying?

      • Ron Kean

        Not only that, their financial division received 60 billion dollars of Troubled Asset Relief Program funds that were supposed to go to banks. That’s why NBC and MSNBC doesn’t have to care about ratings. Obama bought GE.

    • Tim Ned

      Appears this report is being withdrawn.

    • boqueronman

      You contemptible fool! Your Progressive Investigative (oxymoron) reporter has confessed that he is a stupid idiot. Much like you are. Partial quote from his very own self below:

      “Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp did not get a $4.8 billion tax refund for the past four years, as I reported. Instead, it paid that much in cash for corporate income taxes for the years 2007 through 2010 while earning pre-tax profits of $10.4 billion.

      For the first time in my 45-year-old career I am writing a skinback. That is what journalists call a retraction of the premise of a piece, as in peeling back your skin and feeling the pain. I will do all I can to make sure everyone who has read or heard secondary reports based on my column also learns the facts and would appreciate the help of readers in that cause.”

      Obviously, he didn’t count on slow learners like you, who either didn’t hear or “can’t handle the truth.” Look if you want to create a Progressive paradise go find an island in the South Pacific and leave the rest of us alone.

      • Bruce A.

        We have to forgive Wil on this one. He got so excited when he saw the article on News Corp. he let his emotions take over and prematurely posted before the facts were in.

      • Wil Burns

        boqueronman, Remember, I didn’t write the article, I just reported it to Bernie. As for your snide remark about an island, I suggest you might be more happy living on one. I love civilization and I don’t gripe about paying for it!

        • Jeffreydan

          “I love civilization and I don’t gripe about paying for it!”
          Good. Go live in a different country in our civilization. The USA is a Constitutional Republic, where I never gripe about being properly taxed by responsible leaders, jerks like BO feel entitled to undo its foundation, and unappreciative people like you don’t consider the consequences.

          It is absolutely evil for any liberal politician to burden our citizenry with policies & programs that clearly violate our core freedoms, when there are plenty of countries he/she could move to that already have that crap in place.
          Funny that Socialistic laws are an acceptable thing to force upon Americans, though the people who supposedly accept them wouldn’t dream of moving to a place that already has them.

          • Wil Burns

            Countries with high taxes are among the happiest in the world. Effectively­y implemente­d and ENFORCED regulation prevents worker injury, encourages worker satisfaction­, and prevents market inefficiently­cy & systemic risk (too big to fail).

          • Tim Ned

            Yes, Will. And the French worker sees 30 hour work weeks. The full month of August shut down. Health care, free education (if you qualify for college), and most importantly; they don’t have to work hard.

            Now here is the question; count the number of French products in any hardware store, grocery store, clothing store, etc., etc., etc. Outside of a small section in a liquor store (where their market share is shrinking every month), your results will find “Zero”!!

            Try the same for Danish products or Swedish Products!

          • Bruce A.

            @ Wil
            Yes, look at Europe. Europe chased out the best & brightest people years ago with many landing here in the USA where innovation & a strong work ethic once ruled. Of course the people there now are happy, they are too dumb to know any better.

        • Wil Burns

          Ted, One word…China!

  • rider237

    as you wish, espy. i am getting flashes of the Ron Paul crowd talking to you. :-)

  • Wil Burns

    Bernie, According to David Stockman, former budget director for Ronald Reagan:

    “In 1985, the top 5% of the households, the wealthiest 5%, had net worth of $8 Trillion, which is a lot. Today after serial bubble after serial bubble, the top 5% have net worth of $40 Trillion. The top 5% have gained more wealth than the whole human race had created prior to 1980.”

    • rider237

      you are missing some things in your equation. 1st, how many are now in that top 5% compared to 1980? 2nd, is your number at all adjusted for inflation? 3rd, so what?

      wealth, or the lack of it, is not a static condition in a capitalist economy. static conditions only exist in those economies which are manipulated for “fairness”.
      in a capitalist economy a person may be wealthy today and poor tomorrow. a poor person may become wealthy through their own industry, or a lucky break.

      your argument assumes that there is a finite pool of money. if one person is wealthy it is at the expense of another. not so. my wealth does not impact my neighbors ability to become wealthy. in fact, if the wealthy person hires someone less wealthy, they enable that person to become wealthy if the person is wise with their income.
      no one acquires wealth on government handouts.

      • Bernie

        Rider237

        Very nice. Yr best line: “3rd, so what?”

        Elegant, my friend. Elegant.

    • will swoboda

      Hey Will, Once again, I bet you can’t do that in Bangledesh. Will, why don’t we look for the good these rich people have done instead of knocking their wealth. I have a friend who became a doctor after being pick up as a boat person when Vietnam fell. At 17 he came to America with no money and knew very little english. You can only do that in America.
      Your friend in Baltimore, Will Swoboda

  • Brian

    Giving tax breaks to the richest 1% percent is not going to help the working poor and middle-class. It will just widen the gap.

    • rider237

      please explain how the poor and middle class are hurt if tax breaks are applied to the upper class in addition to being applied to lower classes. why would it be fair to give tax breaks to lower income and not to wealthy? why did obama extend the bush tax cuts?
      is it the job of those with wealth, or the job of the federal government to “help” the lower classes, or would it be better for the government to get out of the way of the economy working as we know it can.

      • Brian

        That was in response to those who believe that tax breaks to the wealthy create more jobs. That is not the case.

        • will swoboda

          Hey Brian, All wealthy people want more wealth. They don’t stick their dough in banks for a 3% return, no they invest it. But they will invest it much faster if they know they get a decent return. It’s not rocket science, it’s common sense. President Hoover said, “The business of America is business.” If the government would create a business friendly environment, I wonder what would happen?
          Your friend in Baltimore,
          Will Swoboda

  • Ellie Velinska

    Flat tax, no deductions, no excuses, 10%, plus sin taxes (alch, tob, marij.,) will fill the treasury beautifully. The problem is the corruption in Congress and the federal bureaucracy will burn through the cash in no time and the debt will not be addressed. Each department will create a new ‘innovative’ program on some ‘real’ problem that will ‘save’ the kids, the elderly, the poor, the whatever-makes-you-shut-up-and-allow-the-new-college-graduates-to-get-a-job.

  • Espy

    The only real solution is to entirely replace an income-based system of taxation to a consumption-based system. By taxing all consumption above the poverty level, everyone has skin in the game. The effective tax rate is zero for people living at or below the poverty level and effectively graduated thereafter. (“progressive in this sense is an odious term to me”) The more you spend, the more you pay. The Fair Tax provides just such a mechanism to achieve all of this and far more. In fact, it saves hundreds of billions of dollars in tax system compliance costs, gum’ment bureaucracy. Furthermore, it is supported by hundreds of economists and will apply to all consumers in the USA, including international foreign business travellers and tourists, drug dealers, prostitutes, etc, all of whom make little or no contribution to Federal revenues today. There is more to it, obviously, and you can read all about it at http://fairtax.org . Also worth noting, that the relevant legislation is coming up for its first ever hearing by the Ways and Means Committee in the next few days.

    • rider237

      the fair tax is regressive. it falls hardest on the poor. it would require exemptions for things like food, medicine, etc. a flat tax is simple and need not unfairly punish the lower incomes.

      • Espy

        How about you read up on it yourself before making a comment that simply illustrates your ignorance? For one thing, it takes away FICA taxes so, in fact, it is even LESS “regressive” than the status quo.

        • rider237

          i have. that’s how i came to the conclusion that the flat tax was better than the fair tax.

          it’s not a religion darlin, it’s about what will work best and be simple. the fair tax has the same effect as a European VAT tax. it adds to cost and would require many exemptions not the impact elderly and poor adversely.

          the flat tax is simple, requires no exemptions, and does not add to cost of products.

          • Espy

            Impossible. No objective analysis of the consumption-tax model could reasonably lead one to the kind of conclusions you draw. You are either very poor at comprehension or predisposed to a point-of-view that precludes objectivity. I suspect the latter.

            The Fair Tax is completely different to the VAT. In fact, if you knew the facts, you’d realize the Fair Tax eliminates the effect of existing taxation on the various steps that lead to manufacture of a product or provision of a service. The current tax system, as with VAT, adds costs to each step which are then compounded.

            With the Fair Tax, the ultimate cost of goods at market is much less and millions of dollars of study by real economists have determined that even with the Fair Tax ultimately included in the final price of a good purchased (or service provided), the actual cost to the consumer will change very little. And this does not even take into account that every household receives a check, in advance, every month representing the cost of the consumption tax up to the cost of living.

            It requires no exemptions!

            Although this exchange is rather like arguing with someone that lives in the dark that the sky is blue, I trust there’s some value for the few others who might be reading it and so become better able to determine the facts.

            By the way, you do realize that our existing tax system started as a flat tax with no exemptions? Furthermore, the reforms of the tax system in the 1980s under Reagan came close to making it a simple flat tax system again. 25 years later, it’s as convoluted as ever. It’s not just that a flat tax on income won’t work. It’s that it never has.

  • Cyberquill

    “The other half pays for just about nothing.”

    Then how come I owe 1,000 bucks federal income tax on my gross income of $19,000 last year? Am I not in the bottom half that should be paying nothing?

    • rider237

      ah, but what do you get back? earned income credit, etc. many in the bottom half “pay” taxes, but they can get back more than they ever paid in. in addition, the amount paid by the bottom 1/2 will never pay the amount they get in entitlements later.
      also remember, we are talking about federal taxes, not state. state taxes are a separate issue, but even then most who pay the lower levels of state taxes either get much of it back or take more in services than they are paying in.

      • Cyberquill

        No, I don’t get earned income, nor any “etc.” And I also owe 800 bucks in NY state taxes.

        • Dave

          Your effective federal tax rate is 5.2% – I would love that……

    • Bruce A.

      Joe Biden thinks its patriotic to pay taxes. According to him you should be happy to have this amount confiscated from your labor.

      • Cyberquill

        I don’t mind having this amount confiscated from my labor. In fact, it wasn’t even from my labor but from my unemployment compensation. I’m just wondering way, given the claim Bernie made that “the other half pays nothing,” I’m not in the other half. If I’m not in the other half, then who is?

        • Cyberquill

          CORRECTION: I’m wondering why, not way.

        • Bruce A.

          Lower income famlies with children who qualify for the EIC for one. Add in some of the elderly living on pensions/social security. Add in the chunk of people living off the system which I see every day at work. Disabled people & the disabled people on phony claims, I know more than a few of them.

      • Wil Burns

        Joe Biden thinks its patriotic to pay taxes.>>

        And, you don’t?? How unAmerican you must be!

  • rider237

    has been my idea for years. in order to get around the whiners, you might need a tiered tax. for the very poor, maybe as low as 5%. ideally, you would have a single tax, but the left would never go for that. in addition, i would tax ALL sources of income including all public assistance, and SSI. the majority of people take far more out of Medicare and SSI than they have put in. tax it as income at the lowest level.

    people who pay nothing into the system care only about what is given to them. they make all political decisions based on who will give them the most “stuff”….. the stuff that the rest of us have earned.

  • Bruce A.

    With a system like this there is no reason for Paul to even think about improving himself. There is a perception in this country that it does not pay to work & perception is reality.

  • Wil Burns

    Hey Bernie, With tax break after tax break showered on the wealthy these past 30 years (so the top 1% now receive 20% of all national income – they took home 10% of national income in 1980), did you conservatives ever scream class warfare? There is a class war going on in America and the people know who the winners are!

    • Henry

      And yet even with the tax breaks, the wealthy are STILL forking over more than their fair share!

      • Wil Burns

        Henry, Do you really think that kissing up to the rich will make your life easier?

        • Henry

          Condemning the rich for not paying their supposed fair share doesn’t help either, Wil.

    • David W. Hunter

      Mr. Burns. You say the wealthy receive income. Wouldn’t it be more appropriate to say they earned the income? You make it sound like they stole it. Talented people who work hard deserve to have more than the third generation welfare recipient who thinks working at McDonald’s is beneath their dignity.

      • Wil Burns

        David, Where do you think that money came from? Do you think the successful people/companies just magically created it on their own? No, they traded it for some goods or service from other people. And they probably used lots of public infrastructure whilst doing it e.g roads, electricity, telephone, Internet, etc. So, of course they deserve to be taxed to maintain the very society they’ve made so much money from.

        • David W. Hunter

          Yes, they traded for it. They offered a service or a product to someone who gave them money in return. So why does anyone else get a share? Why didn’t you or another person develop the same product. In some respect, wealth IS created. Someone takes an idea and resources and converts it into something that has more value than the original resources. Their work created the value, so they should receive the reward.

          Everyone uses public infrastructure. Why does a person who drives a luxury class deserve to pay so much more when their car uses up no more space and does no more damage to the roads than the inexpensive car. As far as electricity, telephone and internet, they pay for it. Yes, the government did provide subsidies to build the telephone poles and such, but the companies who use these also invest billions of dollars.

          I agree that taxes are necessary, but the wealthy consume more so they are already paying more in the form of sales tax. I’m even in favor of reducing sales taxes on things like food and energy while having slightly higher taxes on goods and services that are not required to live. Some states already do this.

          What I don’t agree with is that only some people are responsible for sustaining the “society”. I think the everyone, including the poor should, as Mr. Goldberg puts it, have “skin in the game.” Why is it my responsibility to feed take care of someone who wants nothing but a free ride?

          With respect, Mr. Burns, I’d like to ask you a question. What do you do for a living? Since I asked, I’ll go first. I’m a mechanical engineer. Cheers.

  • Wil Burns

    Hey Bernie, Of course we want the government to redistribute wealth. That’s what a progressive tax does and it is what we want it to do. The other option is the French Revolution.

    • Ron Kean

      Who’s we? Did you ever have a job working for a poor person? How many people do you want to support? Do you have a wife and children? How about supporting somebody else’s too?

      • Wil Burns

        I don’t enjoy paying taxes. But, I’m also a responsible and mature enough citizen to realize they are necessary to keep our nation intact.

        What’s your excuse?

        • rider237

          define “intact”. the federal government is constitutionally mandated to do some things. those things take money. no one disputes that.
          however, the federal government has no constitutional mandate to take money from one citizen and give it to another. they have no right to do that. if a state wishes to do so, they may, according to that states constitution.

          • Wil Burns

            The Sixteenth Amendment (Amendment XVI) to the United States Constitution allows the Congress to levy an income tax.

        • Ron Kean

          excuse for what?

        • Ruralcounsel

          Funny, the nation survivied without an income tax until 1913. So just what taxes are necessary? Some taxes may be necessary, but there is clearly no requirement that we allow our government to run a socialist-democratic Ponzi scheme with our taxes just to keep getting re-elected.

          Too many promises of too many expensive social benefits set way too far in to the future without any notion of how to control costs or raise enough money to pay for them, but those crafty politicians who generate these plans knew they wouldn’t be around when the whole thing craters. But they accepted the kudos and votes for making it all up.

    • rider237

      have you studied the french revolution? that didn’t work out so well for the people.
      why do you think it’s ok to take what others have earned and give it to those who did not earn it? would you like to walk out in the morning and find that someone stole your car? would it be ok if the person who took your car really, really, needed it?

      • Wil Burns

        Only eventually led to the French Republic!

        • rider237

          yes, after great slaughter, chaos, and a dictator to bring things back together. the French republic was declared as a result of the revolution but did not exist in practice until after Napoleon had taken over, restored order, was deposed…..
          to serve your purposes i think you would want more of the Bolshevik Revolution, or the 1949 revolution in China, maybe a little 1959 Cuba. that way you can have all my stuff and the government can make sure that i am a good girl about giving it all up.

          even though France ended up a socialist country that many here admire, the reality is that there is more inequity between the “classes” in France, than there is here. so it goes in most socialist countries. the reality never lived up to the fantasy. straight up communism is the only way to achieve your goals of equality…..of course we will be equally poor….

          • Wil Burns

            yes, after great slaughter, chaos>>

            Just like the American Revolution!

  • EddieD_Boston

    Aren’t Hollywood movie stars millionaires? I wonder if their accountants are taking advantage of every tax loophole possible? Does this come up during Obama’s $10,000 a plate fundraisers?

    Another point is how come the Ivy League grads in the media are too stupid to grasp that someone making $250,000 a year isn’t a millionaire.

    • joe from louisiana

      For the answer to that Google Michael Eisner CEO of Disney during Clinton administration. Big lib Clinton supporter but made sure he sold assets($200 million) prior to 1993 to avoid the capital gains increase. I don’t know why the question is ever asked why these lefty millionaires don’t just send more in their tax bill? Your tax bill is a minimum owed and the gubmint will happily take more. Hollywood and pop stars: put up or shut up and do your job by treating the government as a charity. You may even get to take it off on your taxes.

    • Tim Ned

      You’re right Eddie. Plus the person making $250K put their own kids through college (makes to much for tuition breaks or government support), purchases their own health care and is planning their own retirement. On top of that, paid the upper end of the tax bracket!

      • EddieD_Boston

        Yup, and his daughter didn’t get pregnant at 15 by an unemployed ex-con and she’s not on food stamps living in the projects.

        But Wil Burns wants to take this guy’s money and give it to Gimme America so they can continue not to work and not play by the rules like the rest of us.

      • Wil Burns

        Tim, I too, worry about the struggles of persons making only 250K a year. How about us forming some sort of support group, to help those unfortunate people. Get real!

        • EddieD_Boston

          Good one Wil…but in Boston if you have 3 kids, live in a city bordering suburb and put your kids in Catholic or Prep school you’re NOT rich. You’re doing well but you’re NOT rich.

          Not every part of the country is palookaville. In the Bay Area in CA your living paycheck to paycheck.

          • Tim Ned

            I do well by spending fifty percent of my time traveling with 60 to 80 hour work weeks. My people do well with the same commitment. Our people that don’t have that commitment don’t make as much and that’s their choice. That’s how it works and that’s why I make three times the money and pay a lot of taxes. I put 5 kids through college that didn’t cost Wil a dime and no one paid my way through college. I did working nights.

            I get no subsidies, tax breaks, rebates, etc. And you want to pick my pocket more for people who don’t have my commitment and work ethic? You get real Wil!

          • Wil Burns

            Tim Ned, Paying taxes is the cost we pay for a civilized nation, be grateful you live in America and are enjoying the good life, the rest of us help to provide for you.

          • Tim Ned

            I am extremely thankful Wil for this country. I could have never achieved the freedom to do what I want if I was born in Europe. And I am proud to pay taxes and proud of my state that is one of the highest taxed in the country along with our sales tax. I am proud of my employees even those that have chosen “Not” to be high achievers like my others. I am proud of my high achievers that make much more than the others and are willing to make the sacrifice. But I am disillusioned by people like you. Disillusioned in your view of those that consider my high income on the same level as a Bill Gates. I am sick and tired of people who blame their problems, which in most cases was their “Choice” in life, on those that have more. Yes, their are many like the Governor of MN Mark Dayton that inherited every penny. And there were those like the founder of Facebook who succeeded beyond the wildest dreams with their first attempt in business. But there are millions more like me that must work every day like our first day in business to keep the machine running because we have responsibilities that go beyond our own family. And we pay our fair share in taxes because we don’t have the tax loopholes of a William Buffet. But mostly I am disillusioned by people that can’t understand that a flat tax as Bernie suggests would end the tax loopholes for the billionaires.

      • Wil Burns

        Tim, I’m so happy for you, but I keep wondering why you people are so unhappy. You are having a good life, please stop the griping! Remember, you aren’t the only one who works in America, it just seems to make much more money. Enjoy.

        • Tim Ned

          You will hear no gripes from me and not once have I done so here. It’s about people paying taxes based upon Bernie’s article. Let’s withdraw the Bush tax cuts but here’s the way I want it. Withdraw all the Bush tax cuts. Yes, let’s get rid of the tax cuts the middle class got as well! Then we’ll hear the gripes!

  • David

    Hey Bernie,

    I think closing loopholes is a great idea since all a loophole really means is our government was bribed. Lowering taxes sounds great too except for the fact that I still haven’t seen any great effect since Bush lowered taxes or Obama extending those and on top of that creating his own version of a tax break. Of course you could “say” that there was an effect but its hard to tell since the economy was so screwed up to begin with, much like Obama “says” his stimulus saved more jobs than noticible. Except the problem for me is that businesses have been still making incredible if not record profits while most of America is suffering. Honestly Bernie, a business’s purpose to make profits, its not to hire people or give them benefits or make them feel gooey inside. Its sole purpose is to make money. During this process they hire people only to allow them to make more money and if they don’t see expansion as a possibility than jobs won’t show up. The profits that some of these businesses have been bringing in aren’t bringing in jobs or we would hear about it. If keeping the Bush tax cuts 2 more years and on top lowering the taxes for the middle class worked, and the economy was at least stable right now and unemployment was closer to 6-7%, I would be the first person calling on my senator and congressmen to lower taxes more, but it didn’t work and it hasn’t worked. They are racking in the cash but not making the jobs, so giving them a tax break would be like giving your child a cookie for already taking two cookies from the cookie jar. Not the best reinforcement in my opinion.

    Also a flat tax is a horrible idea though you may disagree and have great points to follow this. If you make 10,000 dollars a year and say we go with your tax number which may not even be close to correct (17%) and you take that 17% from it that person is left with 8300.00. 8300 is not much for the entire year and we haven’t even started to consider as you mentioned payroll taxes which are 7.65% as well. Then we take someone who makes a cool million. Sure they pay 170,000 in fed taxes which is a lot of money… hell its 17x that of the other guy in just taxes. He is still left with 830,000 dollars. Once again we need to remember to take out the 7.65% payroll tax that is up till they pay their 106,000 in and then its maxed and they only get taxed the 1.45% on medicare. My point is by creating a flat tax you are essentially taking too much money from those that don’t make a lot. Many could live in this belief that that extra money would go to more jobs, or better paying jobs. But once again if you look at the purpose of companies it is not to create jobs or give more pay, it is to turn as much profit as possible on what they have and the only way a business will expand is if they make money while doing it.

    • Dmorris Engage America

      It is important to understand that not all companies use these loopholes to avoid paying taxes. The Business Roundtable did a study and found that the average company based in the U.S. pays an effective tax rate of around 27%. (http://scr.bi/ldGkg4)

      By removing the loopholes that the largest corporations utilize they will be forced to pay the average effective rate like most American companies. The higher the effective rate the more tax revenue the government collects and the faster it can pay down the national debt.

    • Tim Ned

      David, First; your first paragraph. The majority of new job creation in this country is small business. Get your head out of the clouds. The economy isn’t only about oil companies or Microsoft, Apple, etc. that have always had huge profits and cash reserves. It’s about small business. If you’re one of those that need to see the negative; go ahead raise those taxes and see what you get. The top profit making corporations will still be raking in the money but the heart of our economy which is small business will be extinct.
      Your second paragraph: If you’re making $10k in this country which is less than five bucks an hour I only have one thing to say. “Get a Real Job”!!!

      • Wil Burns

        If you’re making $10k in this country which is less than five bucks an hour I only have one thing to say. “Get a Real Job”!!!>>

        Tim, How about giving them, your job?

        • Jeffreydan

          Wil,

          How about liberals simply write a bigger check to the IRS? Yes, you can do that. And since the left is comprised of so many massively wealthy individuals, and they are supposedly the epitome of compassion, the gov’t should be able to balance the books and give as much to the entitled masses as desired with all that liberal money.

          As for you, go ahead, give more of your money to the politicians. You aren’t paying enough right now, after all.

          • Wil Burns

            Jeff, Where were you the past 10 years while billions were spent by Republicans into two wars that put America into debt long before Obama was elected?

        • Tim Ned

          Wil,I’m 100 % commission. You are welcome to try.

          • Jeffreydan

            Tim,
            Feeling your pain. Gov’t just loves him a nice high percentage of one’s commissions.

            Wil,
            Where were you when BO spent more money in his first couple of years than President Bush did in his entire presidency?

            Liberal blindness–never fails to amuse.

      • David

        Tim:

        I was drawing a comparison. If it makes you feel better we can use 20k either way your taking too much money. A “real job”, I don’t know exactly what you mean by a “real job” since work is work. Apparently your an elitist and think if someone makes less than you it isn’t a real job.

        Next, I never said raise taxes, I just said don’t give anymore breaks b/c I don’t believe in giving more when I haven’t seen progress. And since there has been numerous tax breaks in the last 4 years I think that says something for the position we are in currently.

        Finally, the fact that you are so aggressive with your response shows that your too emotional when you read what people say and should take a deep long breath next time before you have a heart attack or something. I find it sad that you can’t keep yourself from making attacking comments, sad face :(