The GOP's Bizarre, Disturbing Passion for Raising Taxes on the Poor

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The GOP's Bizarre, Disturbing Passion for Raising Taxes on the Poor
Jun 7, 2012

I highly recomend reading this entire essay; it deals with plutocratic minded Democrats as well as Republicans. The link follows the excerpts below...

The GOP's Bizarre, Disturbing Passion for Raising Taxes on the Poor


As Bruce Bartlett reminds us in his latest Economix column, leading Republican figures, including Eric Cantor, as well as a majority of party members, argue that taxes should go up ... on the poor. They are talking about the famous "47 percent" who don't pay federal income taxes...

...Another is that focusing on federal income taxes is misleading, especially now that payroll taxes bring in almost as much money as the individual income tax. If you include payroll taxes, it turns out that only 18 percent of households pay no direct federal taxes.

The "47 percent" figure also ignores the question of why some people don't pay direct federal taxes. The majority of people who don't pay either income or payroll taxes are the elderly--largely because (a) Social Security benefits aren't taxable for most beneficiaries and (b) many of the elderly no longer work. If Eric Cantor wants to solve the "problem" of people not paying federal taxes, he should push to make Social Security benefits taxable. Good luck with that.

Almost all of the other households that don't pay direct federal taxes make less than $20,000 per year. So, it turns out, the only people that Republicans want to raise taxes on are the very poor -- and they want to do it so much that they are willing to consider breaking the Pledge...

The other, even-more-disturbing explanation, is that Republicans see the rich as worthy members of society (the "producers") and the poor as a drain on society (the "takers"). In this warped moral universe, it isn't enough that someone with a gross income of $10 million takes home $8.1 million while someone with a gross income of $20,000 takes home $19,000.* That's called "punishing success," so we should really increase taxes on the poor person so we can "reward success" by letting the rich person take home even more. This is why today's conservatives have gone beyond the typical libertarian and supply-side arguments for lower taxes on the rich, and the campaign to transfer wealth from the poor to the rich has taken on such self-righteous tones.

"Everyone who has ever lived, has lived in Modern Times"

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