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What is the Tax Burden in the US?

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posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 09:08 AM
With everyone screaming about the economy and the candidate's tax plans, I thought it might be interesting to see who really shoulders the tax burden in this country. Every one complains about the top 5% getting tax breaks, how the middle class needs a tax break, and how people who don't pay taxes at all shouldn't get a tax break.

Well, who really carries the tax burden in the US?

  1. The top 1 percent of taxpayers, those with adjusted gross incomes (AGI) above $196,000, paid 29 percent of all income taxes.
  2. The top 5 percent of taxpayers, with incomes above $91,000, bore almost half of the federal income tax burden.
  3. By contrast, the bottom 50 percent of taxpayers, those with incomes below $22,000, paid less than 5 percent of all income taxes.

Who is considered rich?

Who is rich? Many people would consider the top 10 percent or top 25 percent of taxpayers to be rich. The former included all taxpayers with incomes above $69,000, the latter those with incomes above $43,000. Since these income figures are per return, they include two-earner couples.

Thus a single person earning $22,000 would probably be considered poor -- being in the lower 50 percent of taxpayers. But a married couple each making $22,000 would be considered rich, because they would be in the top 25 percent of taxpayers.


Gives some interesting information and shows that tax increases rarely, if ever, increase revenue....even on the top 5%.

And, there's this.....Top 1% Pay Greater Dollar Amount in Income Taxes to Federal Government than Bottom 90%

[edit on 10/14/2008 by skeptic1]

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 09:12 AM
Be careful here.

Obama supporters, and anyone who supports big government in general tend to get confused by facts.

What, with their thinking that the poor actually pay income taxes, all logic, fact, and common sense is lost on them.

Good Post.

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 09:29 AM
reply to post by Constitutional Scholar

Numbers don't lie, and those thinking that the top earners don't pay their fair share can't argue with the numbers. How much should they pay in the end, 50%, 60%?

The top-earning 25 percent of taxpayers (AGI over $62,068) earned 67.5 percent of nation's income, but they paid more than four out of every five dollars collected by the federal income tax (86 percent). The top 1 percent of taxpayers (AGI over $364,657) earned approximately 21.2 percent of the nation's income (as defined by AGI), yet paid 39.4 percent of all federal income taxes. That means the top 1 percent of tax returns paid about the same amount of federal individual income taxes as the bottom 95 percent of tax returns.

The IRS data also shows increases in individual incomes across all income groups. Just as the highest earners lost the biggest percentage of their incomes during the recession of 2001, so they have prospered the most as the economy has continued to rebound. In sum, between 2000 and 2005, pre-tax income for the top 1 percent group grew by 19.1 percent. In the same time period, pre-tax income for the bottom 50 percent increased by 15.5 percent.


posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 09:32 AM
People who demonize the rich for being successful (aka envy) supoprt obscenely high tax rates so that their beloved practice of income redistribution can be practiced.

They tend to think with emotion, not fact, logic, or intellect.

Personally, I think all leftists should be air dropped into the nearest active volcano.

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 10:51 AM
reply to post by Constitutional Scholar

I just have to wonder if they know what they are talking about, if they even look at the numbers.

And, you don't punish the successful for being successful. I was under the impression that the American dream was for everyone to be able to be successful.

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 11:23 AM

Originally posted by skeptic1
I was under the impression that the American dream was for everyone to be able to be successful.

It is.

Unfortunately, to Obama and his leftist friends, the American Dream tops out at around $250,000 a year.

Go figure.

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 11:34 AM
You need to recalculate your numbers with the true tax burden. Not just federal income tax but total taxes:

State sales tax, Tolls, Property taxes, Car registration, Construction permits, State income tax, vice taxes, special assessments.....

The true ax burden of the average American is staggeringly high in terms of the return services. You will find rates comparable with Europe, however the government does not eat the cost of Healthcare, Child care, Higher education...

Americans pay a lot for very little return.

posted on Oct, 14 2008 @ 12:01 PM
Lets say someone makes $60,000.

Federal Income Tax $6,000
State Income tax $3000
Property tax $1000 (Even renters landlords pay property tax)
Telecom tax $250
SalesTax $2000
Gasoline tax $250

So at least 20% of this income is taxable which probably isn't much more than the guy making $250,000, who can save and only pay 15% tax on their investment gain. Depending on your views on social security, the guy who makes $50,000 pays 7% vs only about 3% for the guy who makes $250,000.

So the curent system is harldy unfair to those making the big bucks. The fact that they still pay most of the taxes, shows just how much money that top 5% are making relative to everyone else.

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:45 PM
reply to post by disgustedbyhumanity

Well, I don't see either of the candidates talking about lowering state income taxes, gasoline taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, or telecom taxes.....which everyone has to pay, rich or poor.

Their tax plans deal with the Federal Income Tax....hence the numbers I posted. The top earners in the country don't pay their fair share? Numbers don't lie.

And, no one ever said life was fair, and it isn't up to the government to level the playing field.

[edit on 10/15/2008 by skeptic1]

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:52 PM
What sources are being used here to determine who 'pays' what taxes? The IRS

Can someone determine the 'tax' breaks that people get, and how much of a 'break' goes to whom?

I think this picture is based on premises that are questionable. Especially regarding the taxes on the fruits of labor (income tax). But suffice to say, someone here is very keen on seeing that the notion of the "rich" pay MORE to the government than the poor.

That may explain why the rich are well-represented in government and the poor are virtually excluded.

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:55 PM
I know it is a little off topic but I would like to know what everyone else thinks.

I would like to see everyone pay 20% of their income to taxes. 10% to the Feds and 10% to the State.

NO OTHER TAXES OR FEES!!!!!!!!!!! No sales tax, death tax, inheritance tax, etc.

In addition, NO TAX DEDUCTIONS. You pay in and get no refund back.

Very simple 20% of your income.

Lastly, I would want some type of law stating that the percentage can not be raised.


posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 02:57 PM
I didn't start this to defend the rich; I just got really tired of seeing people argue about who pays what in income tax and how each candidate's plans affect those groups.

So, I posted numbers about who makes what and how much tax they pay based on their earnings.

Hell, I am not rich....not by a long shot.

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 03:04 PM
reply to post by skeptic1

I am sorry, I didn't mean to come off sounding like I was saying that.

It was more of a knee-jerk. I find myself astonished sometimes when people contend that the top 1% of wealth holders in this country bear an 'undo' amount of the tax burden.

It seems that sometimes, people forget it's not about what you have to pay compared to another 'equal' citizen; it's what you DON'T have to pay that shows the discrepancies. It's the shelters and shell-games that are played out that 'hide' the reality. If we were all taxed as suggested by SailorinAZ above, all the 'rich' people would leave the country.

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 03:07 PM
reply to post by Maxmars

I don't necessarily think they bear an undo burden. But, by that same token, all of the people who scream about them not paying much exactly should be their share? What percentage of their earnings and "wealth" should they pay?

A flat tax would be great....but if, and only if, all the rest of the taxes were taken out of the equation.

posted on Oct, 15 2008 @ 03:12 PM
reply to post by skeptic1

Fair? Good question - that can get real ugly fast. I just can't warm up to the flat all-encompassing tax though; seems to much like tithing to a church. I could be convinced otherwise, if I trusted the public servants.

posted on May, 15 2013 @ 01:24 AM
reply to post by skeptic1

Wow. I would think you would know better than putting out simple math and saying the rich pay the most tax. For example: You make $100. I make $10. Let's say there was a flat rate tax at 10%. So you pay $10 and I pay $1. So in theory, we pay the same amount according to the 10% but you pay more because you make more. Now just because you pay more doesn't mean it's not fair. It is a flat rate tax. Funny thing is that the rich don't pay their fair share. There are soo many loopholes in taxes and offshore accounts in the Cayman islands do you really believe the rich really pay fairly? The debate on taxes is not wether or not who pays more because the rich will by common sense pay more but are they paying fairly?

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