Seems that we already are:
HAT TIP: The American Catholic
According to the IRS, the bottom 50% of wage earners in the United States paid $27.9 billion in income taxes in 2008. The top 50% paid just over $1 trillion. The top 20% paid $890 billion. The top 10% paid $721 billion. The top 5% paid $605.7 billion. The top 1% paid $392 billion. Bottom line it – the bottom 50% paid less than 10% of the amount of income taxes paid by the top 1%. We are taxing “the rich”, then, right? Well, in a manner of speaking.
The problem with “tax the rich” is this:
We’re not really taxing them. We’re taxing high income earners, which are not necessarily the same as the super rich. Think fast – when someone says “rich” do you think of Bill Gates, or your local dentist? Obama and the liberals want you to think “Gates”, but they are going after the dentist.
Liberals refuse to get it through their thick skulls. When Obama says “we’re going to tax people making over $250,000.00 a year so those millionaires and billionaires will pay their fair share”, our liberals hear “millionaires and billionaires will pay their fair share”. It just doesn’t compute with them that Obama is leaping from “250,000 a year” to “millionaires and billionaires”. The reason for this is that millionaires and billionaires don’t have a lot of income – if any – exposed to the tax man. Moderately well-off people do. Obama is saying he wants to tax the rich when what he’s really doing is proposing to tax the upper middle class.
The reason for this is because the millionaires and billionaires don’t have enough money. Recently it was pointed out that if you confiscated every last cent from the rich, you could fund our government for about half a year – and that would be a one-time shot.
In the chart above, that trillion dollars extracted in federal income taxes doesn’t come from millionaires and billionaires – it mostly comes from middle class to upper middle class people. While a Bill Gates has $40 billion and that is, indeed, a lot of money…a million people who make $250,000 a year have $250,000,000,000 – more than 6 times Gates’ money, and it is available year after year rather than as a one-time pot of gold. Do you see, liberals? It makes no sense for Obama to tax Gates…he doesn’t have enough money. Of course, if Obama went and said “hey, we’re just going to tax the middle and upper middle class people because they’ve got the money” it doesn’t sound as good as “make the rich pay their fair share”. The truth shall set you free – though as it will also screw up Democrat tax plans, it isn’t welcomed to the debate.
Additionally, if you actually went after the super rich you’d wind up with a lot of angry, super-rich people. Super rich people who are angry with you don’t donate to your campaign; they might even donate to the other guy’s campaign; they become un-interested in shelling out big bucks for your post-Administration speaking engagements; they don’t want to donate to your Presidential library; they might be unwilling to employ your former aides in well-paid, corporate sinecures. Just no upside there.
And this is why I advocate our side doing the liberals one better – calling their bluff, as it were. Propose to tax the rich – the real rich; those with wealth in excess of $5 million. Don’t even look at income – do you have more than $5 million? Then out of every dollar over that, we want a dime. So, someone with a net wealth of $10 million would pay an additional $500,000 in tax (though, as you might recall, I put various supply side provisions in there to encourage them to “hide” their money in wealth-generating, private enterprise). I want to see the look on George Soros face when Obama sends him a tax bill for $1.4 billion – he of the class warfare, “yeah let’s tax the rich” liberalism; no more faking it, George…we’re really going to tax you! We could crush this class warfare nonsense now and forever…if we just call their bluff and propose what they will never, ever agree to…a real “tax the rich” plan.