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Friday, February 27, 2009

Obama "soaking the rich": taking whining to new heights

Kevin Drum makes a point that should be obvious: the tax increases for all but the wealthiest of te wealthy don't even remotely qualify as “soaking the rich.” That is, purely and simply, a characterization made in bad faith – in other word, a flat-out bald-faced lie, which is all Republicans do nowadays.

According to one expert, a family with taxable income of $500,000 – that would most likely be a gross income before deductions and adjustments well north of $600,000 a year – will see its tax exposure move up from about $120,000 to $132,000. Assuming gross income is, in fact, $650,000, that means net income after taxes will drop from $530,000 to $518,000. We're talking about, what, about the top one-fourth of one per cent of the population? Remember, the increases will apply only to the income above the $250,000 level. The family with a taxable income of, say, $300,000 -- probably in excess of $400,000 gross income -- will see tax increases of probably about $1000 - $1500.

OK, what about the poor millionaire in annual income who, because his or her income is mostly above the $250,000 threshold will lose most of the benefits of the Bush tax reductions? That millionaire will probably have to pay somewhere between $25,000 and $30,000 more in taxes. If the gross income of that fortunate person is more like 1.3 million before adjustments and deductions, the net after taxes might drop from about $900,000 to about $870,000. OK, that's pretty Draconian, we can all agree, but somebody needs to sacrifice.

Cry me a river, or what?

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