Wednesday, April 17, 2013

TAXING TO PROSPERITY



EQUITY: the quality of being fair or impartial; fairness; impartiality.


AMERICANS ARE WAKING UP
Johann Wagener 4-17-13 

It looks like Americans have been jarred awake realizing that the "dream" was just that; a Dream. The "middle class" status they once enjoyed has been obliterated leaving very little to look forward to in the coming years and possible extending into the next generation who will be worse off than we are.  


52% support heavy taxes on the rich to redistribute wealth

It’s now up to voters to send a message to those who allowed the great recession to happen; our politicians, to get to work and clean up the mess.


When Dante descended into the Inferno, guided by Virgil, he passed through Circles of Gluttony and Greed, and of Heresy and Fraud and Treachery.

The modern-day version is the corporate tax filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Navigation through the hellish form is fraught with anguish and pain and bewilderment, causing the visitor to beg for release from its devilish grasp, to shudder when recalling the sign at the entrance: "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here."


Taxation for Prosperity drew a distinction between “a mature economy” and a “mature approach to economic problems.” The immature in a mature economy, Paul noted, preach “the gospel that taxes are for revenue only.”

In fact, Paul would argue, taxes in a mature economy offer us “powerful instruments for influencing the social and economic life of the nation.” With “well-planned taxes,” we could avert a next depression.

By “well-planned taxes,” Paul meant progressive taxes, steeply graduated levies that kept as much money as possible in the pockets of “people in the lower brackets.” Lower-income people, Paul explained, “have a higher propensity to spend.” Their spending keeps “the wheels of industry turning.”

For people in higher income brackets, by contrast, a “well-planned” tax system meant high tax rates.

“The people with high incomes can best afford to contribute to the support of the government,” as Paul noted, “and the failure to impose substantial taxes in the upper brackets would seriously injure the morale of the rest of the taxpaying public.”

High taxes on people of high income, Paul continued, also “perform the valuable service of preventing more saving than our economy can absorb,” soaking up the excess that would otherwise wind up devoted to destabilizing speculation.

Could taxes on the rich ever go too high? That danger, Paul acknowledged, does exist in an economy that “depends upon the profit motive.” So taxes on the rich ought always be kept at a level that “fosters economic activity.”

But the “need for this incentive,” Paul added, fades away “when we reach the highest brackets.” At that point, tax rates ought to rise “very sharply ” to help “counteract undue concentration of wealth.”
In other words, Paul summed up, we need a tax system that keeps “the nation’s wealth” from flowing “into the hands of too few.”


 For anyone who takes a peek at where his or her income tax dollars are going, Tax Day can be maddening. Outsized chunks of our taxes fund the military, rising healthcare costs, and interest on the federal debt. Comparatively tiny amounts go to education, science, alternative energy, and the environment.
Category by category, this is contrary to what Americans want -- and what we the people want is pretty clear. Despite near-constant news about how polarized our nation is, a careful look at opinion polls indicates that a strong majority of Americans actually have a coherent to-do list for Washington: we want more jobs, smaller deficits, more education funding, reduced reliance on fossil fuels, higher taxes on the wealthiest, plus -- the kicker -- Medicare and Social Security benefits preserved.



America’s tax code provides substantial benefits to the rich that working class Americans don’t get to enjoy.
State tax codes are heavily slanted toward the rich, as we’ve highlighted before. At the federal level, huge tax expenditures also make the tax code friendlier to the wealthiest Americans. The United States spends  more than $1.3 trillion a year on tax expenditures, and while some of them help the middle class, many of them are aimed specifically at the wealthy, who receive an  extra $250,000 a year in income thanks to tax breaks. Here are five ways the tax code benefits the wealthy: