Comments on: The 70% solution Outside opinion and commentary Wed, 04 Jan 2012 16:40:44 +0000 hourly 1 By: CECUMMINGS Thu, 01 Dec 2011 21:36:17 +0000 Obama has accomplished one thing…Class Warfare is alive and well. He was going to bring us all together remember? Wealthy people work hard, long hours for what they have, many have reloacted their families several times to move upthe ladder. They should be rewarded.


By: Dave123456 Thu, 01 Dec 2011 19:41:45 +0000 Much of the problem is simple arithmetic, and an absence of understanding when debt was incurred, and a lack of asking the rich to sacrifice ANYTHING.

1) Fact is, the GOP cut taxes when times were good, and forced it through at that using reconciliation, because Democrats argued (rightly!) at the time that it would bust the budget if the cuts were not allowed to expire. What a surprise, it did bust the budget – AND we had an economic collapse on top of it. And the GOP argued AGAINST letting them expire on time – again, a budget-buster. Deficit hawks? Hardly. More like haters of any social programs, which leads me to my next point…

2) Social programs are now being asked to have cuts applied. “Cut SS! Cut Medicare!” You can read it in the comments here: “Spending is the problem! Not revenue!” What these simpletons have not learned from watching FAKE News is that revenue IS down – from 21% in 2001 to 14% now. Remember, taxes on the rich were higher in 2001, AND the economy was better. Add two wars, an unpaid for Medicare Part D (GOP passed!) and an economic collapse, what do you THINK the result would be? The Laffer Curve is a joke; lowering taxes forever does not magically increase revenue.

3) The rich haven’t been asked for ANY sacrifice. The poor and middle classes? Oh yeah. Go to war. Pay more for food / gas / energy / health insurance. Cut Medicare, cut SS, cut Medicaid, and more. The rich pay more taxes as a small sacrifice? Nope. In decades past, we asked ALL of our country to sacrifice when we went to war; in the conservative mind of today, asking ANY sacrifice of the rich to pay for the wars THEY started – well, now magically that is a bridge too far. Socialize the losses, privatize the gains.

Welcome to the world owned and run by the 1%. Any wonder we have Occupiers?

By: Gmoney321 Thu, 01 Dec 2011 16:46:11 +0000 The tax rates on the wealthy can be raised to whatever level you want them to be and the economic condition of the country nor the financial well being of the nation will be improved by any significant measure. Congress and the demands of their constituents will funnel money into every black hole that exists without reducing deficit spending nor making a dent on the national debt. As we have nearly defined everything as a right, the government will never, ever have enough money. Don’t tell me about Clinton’s balanced budget, that was a one time flash in the pan due to the Y2K technology rush that will never be seen again. Beside, he had a Republican House working with him.

By: SayHey Thu, 01 Dec 2011 15:43:16 +0000 Assume that higher taxes do not make the rich unhappy. So what? Whether someone is made happier or not does not seem a sound basis for public policy – to say nothing of the sad state of affairs if someone’s personal happiness is wrapped up in public policy. A majority of Americans think the rich (undefined) should be taxed more? That is the functional equivalent of asking “Should someone else other than you pay more taxes?” The answer to that question is not worth very much.

By: tmc Thu, 01 Dec 2011 15:32:47 +0000 Very well said @OneOfTheSheep. I don’t think any of it will come to pass until we have term limits for congress and campaign finance reform though. Absolutely nothing significant will happen until those two things are.

By: timstevens Thu, 01 Dec 2011 15:28:01 +0000 Delong’s article confuses the difference between an “income”-based tax and a “wealth”-based tax.

Income tax = you pay based on (annual/periodic) earnings
Wealth tax = you pay based on ownership (property, stocks etc)

Moreover, is he advocating maximizing revenue to the government (income tax receipts at the Laffer curve peak) or maximizing the “well being” (a squishy term) of the “rest of us” by taxing the (evil) “super rich” sufficiently.

In either case, as noted by others, setting a national property (wealth) tax to 100% and the national+state+local income taxes to 100% on the richest Americans will not fund the US government for more than a few months to a few years.

After that, the super rich will be part of “the rest of us” and who will fund the spending orgy? The parasite-moocher class can only get their pound of flesh once.

By: lhathaway Thu, 01 Dec 2011 15:08:48 +0000 I think we are all going to have to pay more in taxes, no matter the income. And health care expenditures must be reined in. End of life care is exorbitant, wasteful and many times cruel, putting our elderly loved ones through procedures they don’t benefit from, but the health care industry makes fortunes out of. Attack the problem from both sides, more revenue and decreased spending. Cut the wars in the Middle East and all subsidies to oil companies and agriculture conglomerates. That would be a good start. The rich should pay their fair share, with no loopholes, but 70 percent is too much for them as it would be for the rest of us. Don’t forget to regulate Wall Street back into the investment apparatus it was meant to be, not just some trumped up gambling scheme that inflates prices around the globe and then dumps them.

By: niejelow Thu, 01 Dec 2011 13:25:10 +0000 The thoughts and concepts presented are specious. The fundamental thesis of this article is that the Federal government must be sustained at all costs regardless of their blatant and unctuous behavior, fiscal mismanagement and complete lack of fiduciary responsibilities to the american citizen. Sure tax the richest better yet put a consumption tax on their so called toys; but does that really solve the problem. I think not! The federal government has always had a systemic nefarious problem one of mismanagement. Mind you I am not a Republican or a Democrat but an individual who immigrated here with his parents because this WAS the land of opportunity. Of course there is inequality in the world which has existed form the dawn of time and is a blinding view of the obvious. The pernicious and feckless behavior of our government and their obdurate position except come election time is a travesty. I will not bore you any further with my pontification but will leave you with the thought that the Federal Government should take a close look at itself before it asks the american taxpayer to belly up to the bar for higher taxes.

By: CaptnCrunch Thu, 01 Dec 2011 12:19:31 +0000 Well said Mr OneOfTheSheep! Higher taxation applied to debt is fine, but the organic problem is out of control spending not lack of revenue.

A secondary problem is the willy-nilly tweaks and twitches of the rules and regulations American businesses operate under. Less than a month away from a new payroll year and nobody has a clue what the 2012 withholding tables are going to look like.

Even bad rules, consistently enforced are better than the Feds constantly jerking the steering wheel and then changing their minds, “Let’s go here, let’s go there”.

It’s wasteful and counterproductive. If we are to survive and prosper we need a solid plan, and we need to stick to it.

By: rfam Thu, 01 Dec 2011 12:04:19 +0000 A 70% marginal tax rate at what marginal income level? $250k? $1,000,000? $10,000,000? All a 70% tax rate does is prevent anyone from getting rich and preserves th existing rich who will hide their wealth from the tax man.

Why is that lost on our economic experts. Tax rates based on happiness and utility…wow.