Economists Say We Should Tax The Rich At 90 Percent

"America has been doing income taxes wrong for more than 50 years."

"All Americans, including the rich, would be better off if top tax rates went back to Eisenhower-era levels when the top federal income tax rate was 91 percent, according to a new working paper by Fabian Kindermann from the University of Bonn and Dirk Krueger from the University of Pennsylvania."

"The top tax rate that makes all citizens, including the highest 1 percent of earners, the best off is “somewhere between 85 and 90 percent,” Krueger told The Huffington Post. Currently, the top rate of 39.6 percent is paid on income above $406,750 for individuals and $457,600 for couples."

"Fewer than 1 percent of Americans, or about 1.3 million people, reach that top bracket."

Of course almost no wealthy actually pay todays 39.6% tax rates, so loop holes, escape doors, tax safe havens, must be closed not through punitive fines, but through mandatory prison terms. Multi millionaire Mitt Romney through some crafty book keeping was found to pay less tax than his secretary, about 14%.

The underlying rot that is destroying American society is the compulsive pursuit of money by a few powerful fabulous wealthy people, not satisfied with owning all the best property in the US and most of Americas wealth, they have become political activists, subversives, a danger to a democratic society.

Want to stop the 1000 plus percent drug price increases, stop paying the highest drug prices in the world, tax the drug company CEO at 90% take away their incentive. Want a disincentive for the war profiteers, the sociopaths that reap profit off of death and destruction, raise their personal income taxes to 90%. Want to curtail Big Oil carbon emissions, fracking, save the planet, tax the big oil CEO's at 90%. Want a disincentive to gouging health care premiums , 'Trumpcare', tax the HMO CEO'S who pay themselves million bucks a week profiting of Americas sick and dying . Want a hefty raise with benefits, heavily tax CEO's and their corporations, they'll happily give the money to anyone but the government.

Would the economy collapse, history tells us it would actually improve. The overall outlook of Americans would be bouyed by the fairer distribution of wealth. The malignant societal corporate cancer, the rot, could be cured virtually overnight.

This high taxation concept is nothing new, from around the start of the great depression until President John Kennedy ordered America to put a man on the moon, America's tax rate on the wealthy was 90%. The result, these were the heady days of America, it's golden years, when America's middle class wealth grew at an astounding rates and America was second to no one in the world.

Would the rich corporations pack up and leave, yes they'd threaten such, but even that could be blocked through legislation designed to tax any huge amounts of money exiting the country.

America you hold all the cards, if you would just play them. If the owners of these multinational corporations want to do business with the richest country on the planet, they have to live by your rules, rules that can be re-define by you. It's time AGAIN to tax the wealthy at 90% .

portions of the above copied

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/22/economists-tax-rich_n_6024430.html

Comments

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 3 days ago
#1

Mr. Dam: What is the top Federal tax rate in Canada? Something like 33% if my memory serves me correctly.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#2

Dianereynolds, awe girl are you upset someone suggested your multimillionaire boss should be taxed at the 90% republican tax rates of president Dwight D Eisenhower of the 1950's.

leontrollski's picture
leontrollski 22 weeks 3 days ago
#3

What does it matter what the present tax rate is in Canada? The point is that the optimum top tax rate should be around 90%. " The underlying rot that is destroying American society is the compulsive pursuit of money by a few powerful fabulous wealthy people, not satisfied with owning all the best property in the US and most of Americas wealth, they have become political activists, subversives, a danger to a democratic society." The point is that the wealthy are using money as a weapon against the rest of society and should be disarmed.

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 3 days ago
#4

I asked what the Canadian tax rate was because our Canadian visitor spends most of his waking hours telling we here in the US how we should run our country. So, before we pursue what the rate should be, let's compare the US rate to that of or constantly complaining Canadian friend who insists things are always better in Canada.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#5

Leontrollski

Thank you! Nice to see some Americans understand the 'Clear and Present Danger' facing America.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#6

Dianereynolds ,so what you're saying is you couldn't give a shit about America under attack by wealthy subversives, all you care about is an outsider shouldn't be telling anybody. Kind of don't tell anybody daddy is beating mum again.
My god Diane you are one screwed up person, but you're not alone, this two bit Trump presidency received the vote of 26% of Americas eligible voters. Trouble is Diane Trump is attempting another conversion ,perversion of the democratic system through claiming a virtual dictatorship, something that hasn't been attempted since the 1930's when another right winger, Hitler won a minority democratic election and converted that into Nazi rule and plunged the world into a war that killed 70 million people.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#7

America's 'Clear and Present Danger' isn't the Muslim boogeyman Trump claims, its his billionaire buddies, who are prepared to destroy America to protect their extreme wealth and are using their new found 'tax money America never collected' to undermine and subvert a free and open democratic society at all costs. America's founders warned of the destruction of 'this great experiment' coming from within. America your tax money is being used to keep you captive of the rich and privileged few.

be_logical_not_... 22 weeks 3 days ago
#8

zap-daaaaaaamn! As a logical left-leaning moderate, I gotta say that sometimes you go off the deep end. Diane's question was calm and rational. No need to go nuts. What is it in Canada? The 90% tax bracket in 1944-45 was only on income beyond $200K, which in today's dollars is something like $3.5M (most CEOs don't even make THAT much). While I understand your point and certainly feel some new tax brackets would work for extremely high incomes, 90% may be a little high and is certainly politically impossible. There is the case to consider of the Google CEO who ran off to Monoco (or someplace) after cashing in his shares to avoid taxes, and going back to a ridiculous high rate may lead to a vacating of the rich innovators. I strongly disagree with the flat tax and other regressive taxes like 'fees', and agree that Reagan's top end tax cut has led to a damaging disparity of wealth. But for the sake of rational discussion in this dwindling forum, please keep your cool and let's talk numbers, not insults.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#9

"zap-daaaaaaamn! As a logical left-leaning moderate, I gotta say that sometimes you go off the deep end. Diane's question was calm and rational. "
'Be_logical_not' Diane was using nationalism as a defense and I called 'bullshit'.
As for the 'Google CEO' who ran off to Monaco, he's still an American and is subject to US tax laws, no matter where he lives.
As for a massive exit of wealth exiting America, that can be stopped through legislation.
" going back to a ridiculous high rate may lead to a vacating of the rich " Americas best most stable times of the twentieth century, the rich still prospered under a 90% tax rate, so they'll be just fine.
Anyone who controls a thousand thousand million dollars, a vastly disproportionate amount of economic power, must be considered a possible danger to society and treated as such.
As for the voters 'never' approving these tax extremes, America, the world, said the voters would never elect the 'pussy grabber' Donald Trump. Never underestimate the American voter.

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 3 days ago
#10

Mr. Dam: Your mouth is running but you are not listening. Just answer the question.

What is the current top Federal tax rate in Canada?

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#11

Diane reynolds , you're trying to divert from my topic, deflect the valid point i'm trying to make, again you're trying to distort this into nationalism, so i'm not going to let you. " Samuel Johnson made this famous pronouncement that patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel on the evening of April 7, 1775."

'Samuel Johnson (18 September 1709 - 13 December 1784), often referred to as Dr. Johnson, was an English writer who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer. Johnson was a devout Anglican and committed Tory.' Diane you should learn that through history not all Tory's-conservatives , were vile disrepectful 'pussy grabbers'.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#12

In April 1942, just a few short months after the attack, President Roosevelt proposed a 100% top rate. At a time of "grave national danger," he argued, "no American citizen ought to have a net income, after he has paid his taxes, of more than $25,000 a year." (That's roughly $300,000 in today's dollars). Roosevelt never got his 100% rate. However, the Revenue Act of 1942 raised top rates to 88% on incomes over $200,000.

By 1944, the bottom rate had more than doubled to 23%, and the top rate reached an all-time high of 94%. World War II also marked the introduction of payroll withholding, which has become the secret to making today's tax system work. Imagine the administrative and accounting nightmares faced by small business owners suddenly required to calculate and withhold taxes. Traditionally, the government had collected taxes in arrears when taxpayers actually filed their returns. But as the war accelerated, government couldn't wait for the new, higher taxes to increase revenue. That created a problem, though -- how could Americans afford to pay their 1942 taxes at the same time employers were withholding tax on 1943 income? To solve that problem, the Current Tax Payment Act of 1943 actually cancelled 75-100% of the lower of 1942 or 1943 individual tax liability.

Tax rates remained high for decades following the war. It wasn't until President Reagan took office in 1981 that the top rate dropped below 70%. Today's top rate of 35% is actually low by historical standards -- and tax collections are at post-war lows as well.

aboveCOPIED from http://www.cbsnews.com/news/how-would-you-feel-about-a-94-tax-rate/

be_logical_not_... 22 weeks 3 days ago
#13

It was still a logical question. No need to completely go off.

I believe the Google CEO gave up his citizenship and everything to avoid US taxes and as far as I know it worked for him. To say we can "stop that by legislation" is laughable. First, it will not pass until unicorns get elected to office and secondly, you think the rich can't find ways to get around 'legislation'? They do every single day with offshore accounts and shelters.

As for wealth desparity, you're right. The fact that if you tax the 'wealth' of the top 5% of America at a rate of 30% the US debt would be paid off and they would still be stinking rich. (I think those numbers are about right. I did a little math a couple years ago as an experiment but haven't revisited it in a while) But again, until Congress is full of Leprachauns, it will never pass.

Happy St Patricks Day!

be_logical_not_ideological

be_logical_not_... 22 weeks 3 days ago
#14

Oh. One thing to consider about the prosperity of the US after WWII under the extremely high tax rates: the rest of the world's infrastructure was decimated, so of course US manufacturing was booming. Nowadays, global competition means things won't go back to the conditions of the 50's. Again, I agree super high income levels could be taxed more (especially since they stop paying Social Security taxes in early January each year as opposed to the rest of us!), but its not as simple as just saying 90%.

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 3 days ago
#15

Mr. Dam: You have become a cartoon character rivaling that of Rachel Maddow. Let me answer the question I asked for you. Canada's top federal rate is 33% which is more than 20% less than the top rate in the US.

I will include a link just in case your partner bore ass woman hater is going to whine.

http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/ndvdls/fq/txrts-eng.html

I think mom said it all best with the words, "why don't you just tend to your own knitting?"

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 3 days ago
#16

be_logical_not_..

Giving up US citizenship just to avoid taxes would be impossible , especially under new tax legislation, that tax legisaltion could be retroactive to chase down wealthy Americans trying to shuck their societal responsibilities by dumping their citizenship. . New legislation will pass when Americans realize , they as voters hold all the cards and its their right and responsibility to exercise that right. As for the unicorns, the congress is already populated with them, time to utter an electoral incandation and be rid of them.

PhilfromOhio's picture
PhilfromOhio 22 weeks 1 day ago
#17

For most billionaires, being a US citizen runs as deep as whether that favors their bottom line. They are internationalists in the perverse sense. Opportunists who use our common resources to the max when it suits them and lobbying to further advantage themselves at the expense of the well being of our society and anything resembling ethical norms. Just look at the ones that Don has appointed and judge for yourselves who they plan to favor. Aside from the courts, which they aggressively try to stack in their favor, they have little regard for anything else related to the American system. If they can't manipulate it to their maximum advantage, they will bail in a minute like rats leaving a sinking ship. The only way to manage them is to tax them heavily. They made their dough using the US system and owe the country a lot. So tax them a lot. Fair.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 1 day ago
#18

PhilfromOhio I agree tax the hell out of these rich buggers that are destroying our society and our planet in the pursuit of more wealth , wealth that if they lived hundred lives they could never spend. It truly is a sickness, but in this case everyone else suffers. Americans are dying on the battlefields or their sick beds so these filthy rich psycho bastards can add another zero to their bank accounts. Tax their wealth heavily, take away their incentive for greed.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 1 day ago
#19

Once Reagan and the republicans lowered the tax rate from 75% to Romney's 14%, America began its long slide into a third world shit hole of crumbling infrastucture, extreme poverty, gutted social programs, minimum wages, a permanent but growing desperate underclass and a scared people, kept in place by an ever increasingly militarized violent police force and the judicial rant of lock em up.

Roland de Brabant's picture
Roland de Brabant 22 weeks 1 day ago
#20
Quote be_logical_not_ideological:

Oh. One thing to consider about the prosperity of the US after WWII under the extremely high tax rates: the rest of the world's infrastructure was decimated, so of course US manufacturing was booming. Nowadays, global competition means things won't go back to the conditions of the 50's. Again, I agree super high income levels could be taxed more (especially since they stop paying Social Security taxes in early January each year as opposed to the rest of us!), but its not as simple as just saying 90%.

Another thing to consider is that the progressive tax structure and GI bill in the fifties allowed many capable poor and middle class people to start successful businesses. The last time our current program was tried, about 100 CE, the results were underwhelming and led to the Dark Ages.

Roland

Roland

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 1 day ago
#21

Canada's Rising Personal Tax Rates and Falling Tax Competitiveness

"These increases have important consequences for Canada’s economy. In particular, high and increasing marginal tax rates—that is, the tax rate on the next dollar earned—discourage people from engaging in productive economic activity, ultimately hindering economic growth and prosperity. This occurs because marginal tax rates reduce the reward of earning more income and, in the case of personal income taxes, more labour income. There is general agreement in the economic literature on this point; the debate is about the magnitude of the effect."

https://www.fraserinstitute.org/studies/canadas-rising-personal-tax-rate...

Canada’s Lower Corporate Tax Rate Raises More Tax Revenue (2014)

"Canada is apparently becoming an attractive place to do business. This week Burger King announced plans to move its headquarters to Canada, via a merger with Tim Hortons. Other U.S. companies that have recently moved or announced plans to move to Canada include Bausch and Lomb, Allergan, and Auxilium. A Bloomberg analysis indicates Tim Hortons was once a U.S. company, until it inverted to Canada in 2009.
Part of the attraction is the substantial tax reforms that occurred over the last 15 years in Canada. First among these is the dramatic reduction in the corporate tax rate, from 43 percent in 2000 to 26 percent today. The U.S. currently has a corporate tax rate of 39 percent, but lawmakers are reluctant to do what Canada did, i.e. lower the tax rate, for fear of losing tax revenue."
https://taxfoundation.org/canadas-lower-corporate-tax-rate-raises-more-t...

Roland de Brabant's picture
Roland de Brabant 22 weeks 1 day ago
#22
Quote be_logical_not_ideological:It was still a logical question. No need to completely go off. -

You do not know Diane, who is best ignored.

Roland

Legend 22 weeks 1 day ago
#23

Why do Republicans constantly lie and say that the USA corporate tax rate is among the highest in the world at 39%. When it averages 12.6%, with many large profitable companies paying zero.

http://money.cnn.com/2013/07/01/news/economy/corporate-tax-rate/

Roland de Brabant's picture
Roland de Brabant 22 weeks 1 day ago
#24

Because adhering to "alternate truth" is required by the party.

Roland

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 1 day ago
#25

Maybe Republicans just understand corporations do not pay taxes, their customers do in the form of higher prices.

Legend 22 weeks 1 day ago
#26

Here are 27 companies that paid no taxes and/or received refunds. So their products should be cheaper by your analysis.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/markets/2016/03/07/27-giant-profitab...

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 1 day ago
#27

Dianereynolds, i see you quoting the Fraser Institute which is a right wing corporatist mouth piece for the wealthy . The same gang rich subversive SOB's, who they receive their funding from.

As for the rising taxes you lying your teeth about through quoting this right wing subversive institute, Canada's taxes are 15% for the first $46,000.00 , which would cover 90% of American individual income. That tax rate pays for our free single payer government run health for EVERY citizen and helps finance our social programs and run our government. Koch Brothers, Tea Party Billionaires, Donated To Right-Wing Fraser Institute, Reports Show.

Report showing the Koch brothers and their buddies are trying to create 'alternative facts' up here in Canada. http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/26/koch-brothers-fraser-institute_n...

Canada's federal tax rate... http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/ndvdls/fq/txrts-eng.html

Dianereynolds's picture
Dianereynolds 22 weeks 1 day ago
#28

I never said they would lower their prices, I said corporations do not pay taxes, their customers do in the form of higher prices. The market determines the selling price. (don't start that argument).

President Trump has suggested we tax the piss our of US companies that move overseas to avoid US tax or labor rates. I, along with all democrats and a handful of republicans, are in probable agreement with him. Will it lower prices? No, it will raise prices but using leftie logic, a rising tide lifts all boats. More money in the workers hands, more into the economy. Think of it as a giant minimum wage hike. You know, the kind the left screams about every day.

zapdam's picture
zapdam 22 weeks 1 day ago
#29

NEWS CORP , FOX NEWS , MURDOCH's companies paid no taxes.

"Over the past four years Murdoch’s U.S.-based News Corp. has made money on income taxes. Having earned $10.4 billion in profits, News Corp. would have been expected to pay $3.6 billion at the 35 percent corporate tax rate. Instead, it actually collected $4.8 billion in income tax refunds, all or nearly all from the U.S. government."

  • Verizon made a total profit of $62.42 billion in 2010, and received a tax refund of $705 million. CEO Ivan Seidenberg earned $18.1 million.
  • Prudential Financial brought in a total of $18.69 billion in profit in 2010. It got a $722 million tax refund from the federal government, while paying CEO John Strangfeld $16.2 million.
  • eBay made a $6.59 billion profit last year, and got a $131 million tax refund. CEO John Donahoe received $12.4 million.
  • Bank of New York Mellon made a profit of $9.42 billion in 2010, and received a $670 million tax refund. CEO Robert Kelly made $19.4 million.
  • International Paper Co. had a profit of $6.70 billion last year, and got a $249 million tax refund. CEO John Faraci received $12.3 million.

BERNIE SANDERS says Americas top earning corporations pay no taxes. https://www.sanders.senate.gov/top-10-corporate-tax-avoiders

Legend 22 weeks 16 hours ago
#30

I think that Diane is attempting to discuss tariffs.

be_logical_not_... 21 weeks 6 days ago
#31

zap - check your facts. Its not illegal or impossible.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/danielmitchell/2012/05/11/facebook-billionaire-gives-up-citizenship-to-escape-bad-american-tax-policy/#7ef4b7391995

And yes, there is a huge difference between marginal tax rate and effective tax rate. With all the loopholes and write-offs, companies can complain about America's high marginal rates while actually paying nothing. I think the biggest mistake Obama and the Dem congress made in that small filibuster proof window was to not do tax simplification. At least 90% of Americans would support simplification and they could have shaped it to their priorities. Create reasonable progressive tax rates that would keep things fairly revenue neutral or slightly in crease revenues, but simplify the code for massive savings of time & money for compliance, less ability to cheat, and make sure everybody pays their fair share. As it is now, the Right is going to do tax 'reform' their way, which will invariably benefit the rich and drain the coffers, instead of the swamp. We're on the verge of giving Grover Norquist his dream of shrinking government so small he can drown it in a bathtub.

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