Fund Your Utopia Without Me.™

10 April 2012

There Hasn't Been So Much Fire At The White House Since Dolley Madison Saved Some Of Our Most Cherished, National Treasures

Music to read by (h/t JTGA):

  "This is not class warfare -- It's math."

- President Barack Obama

"We don’t begrudge financial success in this country.  We admire it.  When Americans talk about folks like me paying my fair share of taxes, it’s not because they envy the rich.  It’s because they understand that when I get a tax break I don’t need and the country can’t afford, it either adds to the deficit, or somebody else has to make up the difference — like a senior on a fixed income, or a student trying to get through school, or a family trying to make ends meet.  That’s not right.  Americans know that’s not right.  They know that this generation’s success is only possible because past generations felt a responsibility to each other, and to the future of their country, and they know our way of life will only endure if we feel that same sense of shared responsibility.  That’s how we’ll reduce our deficit."

- President Barack Obama, State of the Union, 24 January 2012 

“Making the argument for the rule based on billionaire investor Warren Buffett’s argument that it’s wrong for him to pay a lower tax rate than his secretary, President Barack Obama said in the State of the Union address in January that paying the ‘fair share of taxes’ was necessary for a ‘sense of shared responsibility. That’s how we’ll reduce our deficit.’

From Politico:

The Obama administration is emphasizing “fairness” over deficit reduction in its renewed pitch for the “Buffett rule” ahead of next week’s scheduled Senate vote.

Introducing a minimum 30 percent income tax on millionaires “was never our plan to bring the deficit down and get the debt under control,” Jason Furman, the principal deputy director of the White House National Economic Council, told reporters on a conference call Monday afternoon.

Obama campaign manager Jim Messina called on Romney to release additional tax filings, saying, “The Buffett rule will help make our system reflect our values as all Americans play by the same rules, do their fair share and get a shot at success.”


According to a study by the Associated Press, the Buffett Rule would bring in approximately $31 billion over the next 11 years...assuming that all things remain unchanged, including the behaviour and habits of the "evil rich."

Obama’s Buffett Rule: Would bring in $7.7 million per DAY, ceterus paribus.

Obama deficit spends: $4.3 billion per DAY.

A reminder from "Nightmares from Obama's Past":

CHARLIE GIBSON: And in each instance, when the rate dropped, revenues from the tax increased. The government took in more money. And in the 1980s, when the tax was increased to 28 percent, the revenues went down. So why raise it at all, especially given the fact that 100 million people in this country own stock and would be affected?

SENATOR BARACK OBAMA: Well, Charlie, what I’ve said is that I would look at raising the capital gains tax for purposes of fairness.

MR. GIBSON: But history shows that when you drop the capital gains tax, the revenues go up.

SENATOR OBAMA: Well, that might happen or it might not. It depends on what’s happening on Wall Street and how business is going.

Canada cut its CGR to 10% this year. Why would anyone invest here when they could go across the border?

Update from Allahpundit:

Remember, this gimmick is aimed at rich people who make most of their dough from capital gains, which of course are taxed at a lower rate than ordinary income in order to encourage investment. The idea is to make sure they’re paying as much federal tax as the average middle-class taxpayer is. You already know what an embarrassing sham that is in terms of deficit reduction — look no further than this graph — but how many rich people are we talking about here, exactly? Must be an awful lot to warrant a presidential speech on fiscal policy aimed squarely at this group.

Depending upon how you calculate the effective federal rate, there are either 22,000 households (the White House’s number) across the span of the United States that make a million or more per year and pay 15 percent or less or just 4,000 households according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. But among that sample, most of the potential revenue would come from the mega-rich at the very top, not the millionaire small-business owner. 

The White House’s numbers on them:
"Of the 400 highest income Americans, one out of every three in this group of the most financially fortunate Americans paid less than 15 percent of their income in income taxes in 2008."
In other words, we’re talking here about a rule championed by the president of the United States and set for a vote in the U.S. Senate that’s targeting something like 130-135 households across the entire country. Which, incidentally, explains why the Buffett Rule would set a federal rate of 30 percent for millionaires, not the 15 percent needed to make sure they’re on par with John Q. Public, which is supposedly Obama’s big concern. If they set the minimum rate at 15 percent instead of 30, the already razor-thin amount of extra revenue they’re going to get out of this would all but vanish.

Update #2 (04.12.12) from Ed Morrissey:

In CNN’s preview of the release (of the tax returns of the President and Vice-President), Political Ticker noted that White House spokesman Jay Carney claimed that the data would show that the Obamas would have needed to pay more had the Buffett Rule been in effect, although that’s not quite what Carney argued:
In a post on the White House blog accompanying the returns’ release, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney wrote the president’s proposed “Buffett Rule” would actually increase the percentage of income the Obamas would pay in taxes.

“Under the President’s own tax proposals, including the expiration of the high-income tax cuts and limitations on the value of tax preferences for high-income households, he would pay more in taxes while ensuring we cut taxes for the middle class and those trying to get in it,” Carney wrote.
Carney’s argument wasn’t specific to the Buffett Rule, which wouldn’t have applied anyway.  The Obamas’ taxable income on their return came to $789,674, well below the $1 million threshold for the Buffett Rule as it currently exists in the Senate proposal.  (Obama originally proposed $250,000.)  It would have applied to last year’s return, with the Obamas’ taxable income level well over $1.2 million.

The Obamas paid $162,074 in federal income taxes for an effective tax rate of 20.5%.  That falls well above the median level of effective tax rates, according to the White House’s own report on the subject, which is 13.3% for the middle quintile of income earners.  It’s also well below the median effective tax rate for “the top 1%,” which is 29.6%.  Interestingly, it’s also lower than the level for the 25% quintile of the 1%, which is 21.2%.  According to these statistics, 75% of the top 1% pay at least 21.2% in effective tax rates, while only 10% of the middle quintile pay above that rate.  So much for unfairness.

The White House reports that the Obamas gave “$172,130 – or about 22% of their adjusted gross income – to 39 different charities.”  Good for them; that’s the kind of wealth-spreading that conservatives endorse.  On the other end of the spectrum, though, we have the Bidens, who had a reported AGI of $379,035 — and who donated $5,540 to charity.  That comes to about 1.5% of their taxable income, which was an improvement over earlier years … but not by much.  Contrast that to Mitt Romney, who donated $4.1 million on an AGI of $20.9 million in 2011 on his estimates, which would come to 19.6% of his AGI.

Related Reading:

Big Government Robs The Middle Class Because That's Where The Money Is!

Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death...You Can Keep The "Equality"

There Hasn't Been So Much Fire At The White House Since Dolley Madison Saved Some Of Our Most Cherished, National Treasures 

The Non-Existent Stairway To Socialist Heaven In Sweden

Hey, Progs! Wanna Be Like Europe? How 'Bout You Start By Eliminating Estate Taxes?

The Symbolic Presidency

Obama's Neo-Nationalism

Gradually, Then All of A Sudden 

Buffett Rule Fools

Capital Gains Tax Rates Around The World

The Taxman Cometh Differently On Either Side Of The Pond....Although Probably Not For Long Divide

Axelrod Endorses Romney: "Will You Be Fooled, Again?"

Forget The Buffett Rule! The Reagan Rules Rock!




JTGA said...

Here is a gret song to read by

Three Dog Night - Liar

I'm sure a lot of lib/progs are feelin' this way about the obama kakistocracy about now!

JTGA said...

That would be great in American English.....Please Excuse