By Neal Boortz
You can click here to read my regular Saturday column in the Atlanta-Journal Constitution. Once again I was making the point that, no matter how satisfying it might be to someone’s sense of wealth envy, raising taxes on the evil rich just isn’t going to help us with our budget problems!
The AJC sometimes publishes an email address for readers who want to respond to the column. Last night I got an email from web guy who has been busy going through those responses, and what he told me is somewhat depressing, if not just plain alarming. It seems that no matter what statistics are presented — some people just can’t give up the idea that raising taxes on the rich is really the only way to solve our current spending problems. Obama says it, they believe it, and that By God settles it. These people, it seems, simply aren’t going to let facts get in the way of some good old fashioned jealousy.
There are four things that I wish people would try to keep in mind when they are considering their favorite left-wing politicians demands for higher taxes on the disgusting rich.
- The top 1% of income earners in this country right now earn about 19% of the total income. So … if they earn 19% of the total income, and you’re all for everyone paying their fair share, what percentage of income taxes collected by the government do you think these horrible rich people should pay? Fact is, they pay about 40%. If you don’t think that’s a fair burden, then why don’t you share the proper figure with the rest of us?
- All you need to know to understand that the game being played by Obama here is just good old fashioned class warfare is to remember that on the one hand Obama is talking about raising taxes on those households earning over $250K per year, while on the other hand he and his prog buddies refer to this group as “millionaires and billionaires.” There is no logic in his words … only a desire to exploit jealousy and envy.
- The very people Obama is targeting for his tax increases are the people that we need to depend on right now for new jobs — America’s small businessmen. Well over one-half of the households in this country reporting incomes of over $250K per year are really small businessmen reporting their business income on their personal tax returns. You need to ask yourself whether or not we would be better served by allowing these people to keep their money and use it to grow their businesses, or if you think that Obama could do a better job of spending this money for them.
- People can and do change their economic activities as tax rates go up and down; and this is doubly true for people in the upper income brackets. By law the White House, the Congress and the Congressional Budget Office must consider the affects of all tax increases or decreases on a static basis; in other words, they are not allowed to consider the possibility that some high-achiever or businessman out there is going to change his behavior based on changes in our tax structure. This is simply absurd. Every person with a child knows that you get more of the behavior that you reward and less of the behavior that you punish. When the reward for hard work and economic activity goes up, people work harder and are more active in the marketplace. When the reward goes down. Human nature, folks. You can’t fight it.