Sorry for not letting it rest.
We're having a nice civil discussion. No reason to feel sorry.
Although I see your point and actually agree with practically all of it, there is something nagging.
Taken from the U.S. Census bureau:
In 2009 there were 117,181,000 households in the US. The phrase that keeps returning is: "the top 1% controls 95% of the money in the US"
So that leaves a solid 116 million households. How much Federal taxes are for each of those households I don't know, but assume that when on average each of these households pays 1000 USD/year, there would be 116,000,000,000 USD/year on tax revenue.
How can one say that the rich pay the lion share? (yes, I am fully aware that this projection of numbers is way too simple)
Then again, such numbers also mean that taxing the rich more will not make much of dent either. So government spending is the major issue.
Agreed - Gov't spending is the major issue we can agree on.
I think your numbers got scrambled. According to Wikipedia (the 100% most accurate source in all the world
) 2007 Fed Income Tax was 1.366 Trillion and change. There were just under 139 million returns filed giving a flat average of ~$9,800 per return. We don't know if those are households or not.
If I'm reading the graph correctly and it's accurate, the top 25% of all income earners paid 85% or 1.161 Trillion of those dollars. The bottom 50% of earners paid 0.041 Trillion or 41 Billion of those dollars. Leaving the top 51-74% of income earners to pay the remaining 164 Billion dollars.
Warren and his other top 1% friends paid 505 Billion of that themselves.
Hmmm, how many secret agencies you you really need? The US military machine is also quite costly. Spent a few less percentage points (single digit!) less on these and invest that money in infrastructure (more jobs), alternative energy sources (more high-tech jobs).
Everyone is better off for it (incl. the rich, so I truly don't understand why the Tea party gets their knickers in such a twist about tax increases if the need arises).
I'm not in the tea party. My understanding is they get their knickers twisted for exactly the reason agreed on above. Gov't spending needs to be brought back in-line. Until then, raising taxes is out of the question because we've had so many "fake" spending cuts in the past. e.g. We'll cut spending by eliminating the cost of the war. We have plans to be out by 2011. Then something changes and that deal of off. The spending cut isn't realized.
If the above makes me a socialist simpleton, so be it. Live and let live.
I never thought that about you. Hope I didn't imply that.
I'm all for changing the tax code. They're are way too many loop holes for guys like WG Buffett. Why does he only pay 17% and I pay more.
I'm a little on the fence here.
On the one hand, companies that make lots of money also tend to create lots of jobs. Not always, but usually. Should we penalize profitable companies with more taxes? When you think about it, taxes are like insurance or rent. It costs money to keep the USA safe from bad guys, keep the roads repaired, etc. etc. Since we all benefit from National Scale perks, we should all share in the cost of those perks. But how do you fairly distribute the cost?
Flat taxes have pros and cons, so do sliding scales.
I don't know what's "fair" but I pretty darn sure all the rhetoric from some liberals
about "Taxing the Rich" is a distraction and is designed to incite class envy; even more enmity.
I think we all agree things need to change.