Well that was my wish-list anyway. Taxes never occurred to me. I’m guessing though, being a kid, I would have hired someone to take care of that as well, regardless of how much I owed. I’d be rich; what’s to worry about?
Michael Taylor addresses taxes from a similar angle. Except he’s an adult, and “Smart Money” columnist for the San Antonio Express-News.
His latest 2020 misfire comes while detailing democrat Joe Biden’s tax plans if elected president this week/month. The virtue-signaling, to borrow a recent catchphrase, lives loudly in him when he “promise(s) to not complain” about paying Mr. Biden’s 2% tax on wealth greater than $50 million. “I aspire … to be in a position to pay that tax” he gushes.
Silly me; I’d be happy just to have a few million in the bank. The “position” I envision that comes with handing over a piece of what I’ve earned under threat of imprisonment includes a barrel.
Mr. Taylor focuses on what he implies is not “earned income,” like what you and I get paid for our respective forty-hour gigs. But it’s not entirely accurate.
He’s certainly correct that the tax rate on the sale of financial assets – capital gains – is lower than a few of the marginal rates that apply to wage income. The intuitive aspect he and other tax proponents regularly omit is that the resources used to buy those financial assets were originally derived from wage income.
Moreover, given how much in financial assets is owned by the wealthier amongst us, it’s pretty likely that those wage earnings were taxed at some of those higher income rates.
With this double (or more) taxation in mind, one wonders exactly what “morals” Mr. Taylor has in mind. The “economic merits” of taxing such expendable wealth at low levels, considering prosperity and progress springs from it, are self-evident.
The same goes for inheritances, and it’s here that Mr. Taylor goes the extra mile into disingenuousness.
When discussing merely the “unity principles” struck by Mr. Biden and former rival, socialist Bernie Sanders, he cites the aim of reverting estate taxes to where they were in 2009.
Part of President George W. Bush’s tax cuts in the early 2000s was reducing that tax. It went from exempting all estates below $675 thousand from the 60% rate, to zero percent for all in 2010. Over the decade, the exemption went up, as the rate went down.
If “set(ting)” that 2009 rate at a lower 45% on a higher exemption of $3.5 million was “socialistic,” I’m curious how Mr. Taylor characterizes where it settled the next year.
Maybe he was just being coy. The targets for his tax “aspirations” can be the same way.
Some people I grew up with went on to own successful businesses. I once asked one that I graduated with for his take on the minimum wage, how did it affect his business? He demurred, saying “I just want to sell some chicken.”
I suspect people like him are proud of what they’ve built, the diligent work and frugal habits they have parlayed into productive endeavors. By nature, they quite possibly don’t appreciate being dictated to by bureaucrats who might not qualify to be in their private sector employ.
Being successful business people, they have public relations to be concerned with. They’re smart enough not to provide fodder for those who “aspire” to accumulate seven figures of wealth only to giddily hand over a significant chunk to a wasteful sinkhole like the government.