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TAXES: Corporate taxes aren’t highest in U.S.

Letter by Norman E. Wear, Tacoma on Sep. 25, 2012 at 3:38 pm with 31 Comments »
September 26, 2012 10:27 am

Re: “It’s better to donate than be taxed” (letter, 9-22)

Once again, we have Republican apologists throwing out unsubstantiated or incomplete statements, lacking in documentation, in support of Mitt Romney’s nebulous fiscal “plan.”

In an attempt to justify Republican policy, the writer states that “the United States pays the highest corporate taxes in the world.” This is patently false.

According to The Washington Post (9-20) the U.S. corporate rate is, on paper, higher than any other developed country. But that is as far as it goes. Actual revenues paid in by corporations has continued to shrink since the 1950s, now accounting for only 9 percent of federal Treasury income. One can hardly claim that corporations are overtaxed. Most federal tax revenue comes from individual income taxes and payroll taxes.

And according to CNN Money (3-27), the effective U.S. corporate tax rate is 29.2 percent, compared to the 31.9 percent average for developed economies.

So it would appear that high corporate taxation is not really a justification for unemployment and stagnation, and not an effective argument for returning to the disastrous fiscal policies of the Republicans.

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Leave a comment Comments → 31
  1. Frankenchrist says:

    Mittens has no economic plan for the United States unless he intends to use his Bain Capital plan of destroying companies and offshoring the rest of our jobs to China.

  2. BlaineCGarver says:

    I see the Liberal gene pool requires another gallon of Clorox……Perhaps, corporations would keep their tax payments in the USA if A: they were half what they are now, and B: There were proper audits and stiff penalties for not doing so. I don’t see big-mouth ‘Crat lawmakers moving very fast to plug the holes (even when they owned the entire congress).

  3. Where is the so what? The author connects nothing to republican fiscal ideals, just points out effective versus statutory rates (yes, our statutory rate is the highest in the world).

    No analysis on why treasury receipts are lower. Do corporations make up a smaller percent of GDP today vs 1950? Are profits offshore staying there more today then in the past?

    If there is a problem stated in the letter, there is no recommended solution. Just whining.

  4. “No analysis on why treasury receipts are lower”

    Because (1) we’re recovering from a recession, and (2) effective corporate tax rates have been dropping. Was that really too hard for you to figure out?

    “If there is a problem stated in the letter, there is no recommended solution. Just whining.”

    Thanks for stepping up to the plate and offering a solution.

  5. I didn’t write this POS.

    Since you asked- severely limit the EPA’s scope, domestic energy, bring profits back to the US, flatten the tax structure, lower min wage (get the young into the workforce), trade agreements. That is just a start.

  6. aislander says:

    It’s nice to have a lefty admit that raising tax rates doesn’t necessarily increase revenues.

    So how can they say how much a rate increase will increase revenues or how much tax cuts will “cost?”

    And still, they always seem to come up with a number…

  7. Sonofwashington says:

    CT8- You apparently advocate the lauded Ayn Randian approach for corporations, i.e., privitize profits and socialize costs. Why burden corporations with environmental regulations that cut into their profits? Instead, let us taxpayers take on the burden of hazardous waste clean-up, and dealing with toxins in the air and water through the poisoning of our children and the additional health costs that go with it. This has pretty much been the model of the third world countries where workers and citizens are exploited while the corporate power elite amass huge wealth that allows them to live somewhere where their own pollution does not affect them.

    And while we are at it, by all means flatten the tax structure to put an even greater burden on the average citizen, and at the same time reduce the minimum wage, crushing the middle class even more causing more home foreclorsures and increasing the number of Americans in the poverty class.

    Sounds like a formula for success to me!
    (That is if you are part of the corporate elite.)

  8. “I didn’t write this POS. — So someone impersonating you wrote the POS at 10:49? OK, if you say so.

    “severely limit the EPA’s scope” — And there you have it. Objective proof of how far to the right the GOP has moved. Now they want to emasculate the agency that they created.

    “domestic energy” — Thanks for being so specific.

    “bring profits back to the US” — So you opposed the GOP’s stonewalling of the bill to end tax breaks for outsourcing? Sure you did.

    “flatten the tax structure” — You want to raise taxes on the poor and the middle class while lowering them on the rich. And the GOP’s class warfare continues.

    “lower min wage (get the young into the workforce)” — OK, how about if you set a good example and voluntarily take a pay cut to $5.00 an hour. Put your money where your mouth is.

  9. As Ronmey has said, lower rates and limi8t deductions. Effective rate on the rich is about 20%. Just make it 25% and only allow deductions for charity, with a minumum burden of 20%. How hard is that? I just took billions of waste (IRS, accounting) out of the system.

    Middle class is paying very little to the fed govt. 47% pay nothing.

    My first job paid $5.50/hour. Drove me to improve my station in life. You want to keep kids out of the workforce? That is what min wage does.

  10. SandHills says:

    In a truly fair system, a dollar made as a laborer – which is taxed immediately out of their paycheck – should be taxed the same as a dollar made on an investment.

    Capitol gains is taxed on a more advantageous scale than wages and earnings.

    That doesn’t even take into the fact with anyone as rich as Romney, even with what we are allowed to see on his tax return is only the tip of the iceberg of his wealth hidden off-shore, or tax haven schemes.

    I sit and do my own taxes – as commonsense tells me that H&R block might be able to shave off enough to pay their fee. But the wealthy have Ivy League accountants and lawyers making big bucks to insure that a dressage horse can get a $70k deduction – so it is a direct insult to the middle class that Romney-Ryan-GOP can propose cutting the home mortgage deduction and raise payroll taxes without any changes to the advantage the wealthy already have in paying taxes on just the tip of their wealth iceberg.

    Cut and paste from an earlier post to another letter..

  11. That investment dollar is already taxed 30%….

  12. SandHills says:

    Not exactly CT8, too many loopholes and tax deferred investments for any wealthy investor to be paying 30%… and then, only on those investments reported, which again, they have the advantage of having Law and Accountant firms paid to CYA.

    Maybe for a smalltime investor who does not have competent tax advise….sometimes I wonder how big your a$$ must be to constantly pull this stuff out of….

  13. That dollar of investment gain was already taxed as corporate profit. Then it is taxed again as individual cap gain.

    Try and keep up.

    While you are at, please post te effective rates for all income brackets. I have many times, yet you seem to play ignorant.

  14. LeePHilI says:

    caught bluffing again….

    The definition of “statuatory tax rates”

    “The amount of charges imposed by the government upon personal or corporate income, capital gains, gifts, estates, and sales that are within its statutory authority to regulate.”

    I’ll not dignify the lie further…..

  15. Some individuals on this forum seem to have the idiotic impression that the US Tax Code was created solely by and for the exclusive benefit of rich Republicans. The tax code is the product of both Republican and Democrat Congresses and was signed into law by Republican and Democrat administrations.

    I could care less about Romney’s dressage horse deduction or Charlie Rangle’s condo in the Virgin Islands. The simple fact remains that deductions are legal and are employed by Democrat as well as Republican taxpayers.

    There are other tax proposals but no one seems to be in favor of changing the status quo, however, the barrage of bitching from the left is more than a little tiring. If you are totally pissed at the system, is your only answer to tax the rich or are you sane enough to understand that the rich are not your enemy?

  16. SandHills says:

    Well CT8, admittedly it appears I am less into tax rates as you were in Embassy security – so on that we’ll call it a draw on ignorance.

    But it is perception that counts – as I seriously doubt the French or Russian royalty felt that their logic was flawed anymore than conservatives today on their view of taxes. The perception from many who are suffering is that whatever the tax rate is, %30, %40, or %50 – %50 percent of a million dollars still leaves $500K of wealth. But with only %10 taxed out of a $50K salary leaves a whole lot less for food, gas, clothing, housing, that continues to rise.

    You had your rant yesterday, I’ll take mine now.

    I see the 2 percent-ers using the upper middle class as enforcers – the rich wannabees who are so close to that carot – who are the heart and soul of the GOP agenda. But that still leaves 80-90% of Americans who just can’t buy into that wealth accumulation game even if the economy was booming. It is perception.

    I will use my rowboat analogy – usually applied to that blue globe in the darkness of space – to America.

    America is the golden goose – and it will be those driven by wealth accumulation who will kill it.

    Remember, the American revolution was different because its leaders were fairly well heeled (or like Washington, jealous of being considered to provincial to be a regular British Officer, or in debt to high priced British goods).

    The French and Russian revolutions were middle class led – it was driven by class warfare, fed by over indulgences of the wealthy royals.

    We came as close to that in the 1930s (where even MacArthur and his aide Eisenhower led forces to rout unpaid military vets out of “Hooverville”). True enough it was WWII that actually ended the Great Depression. But when it was at it’s worst, it was government programs like the WPA and CCC that created jobs – not the wealthy. Those jobs were not meant to be self-sustaining, and paid more in hope and dignity than real wages. We are at the tipping point to that same environment.

    For anyone to argue that taxes or tax rate on the wealthy are already more than they need to pay is ludicrous from a perception point of view – when Romney can take a tax deduction of $70K for a horse.

    Going down the Romney-Ryan-GOP – positions that the wealthy already pay more than their fair share AND adding more taxes to the middle class (that home mortgage deduction is a big one I keep bringing up but you conveniently ignore) – is a faster road to kill that Golden Goose than even the extreme characterizations of socialism.

    Believe me CT8 – your positions on here can be summed up concisely as “Let them eat cake”

    Besides the Russian and French examples I will only mention China for the reason is was largely a peasant revolution (basically, “I just want a bowl of rice to survive”). Unlike the Chinese peasants, the American middle class has been use to a good life – they have a much lower threshold of suffering. When they get down to paying most of their paychecks for bologna and the wealthy still eat prime rib, believe me, perception speaks louder than your snobbish “keep up with my facts” presentation.

    Ryan already got a taste of how the GOP agenda on Medicaid plays with the elderly – maybe why now the battleground state of Florida is getting firmed up for Obama.

    I’ll match your rant and double raise you. The conservative view of where our country should be headed will destroy America faster than any fears of socialism they love to throw around. In the world of infinite opportunity that the GOP likes define America, anyone can win the lottery. In reality, wealth perpetuates unfair advantages in America. It is a reality that most of us in the middle class understand and deal with, whether it is the tax codes or where your kid gets accepted into college. But if this economy doesn’t make a turnaround – or as some predict, a steeper decline is still out there – those perceptions of unfairness will
    grow.

    So ply your coolaid CT8. We are in dangerous times – and it is the perception that it is the wealthy protecting their wealth who are creating what could be real class warfare in America – not those trying to tamp down those perceptions by asking the wealthy to pay more in taxes for having more. It is the wealthy who need to wake up – so far they appear to be satisfied to have the likes of you, or even your “betters” be a buffer to reality.

    And in the terms of the movie “Shawshank Redemption”: “How can you be so obtuse”

  17. Romney said the wealthy should maintain their current tax rate. Fact. 60 minutes. After a stupid gotcha question was asked about taxes ( once again the statutory vs effective rate game).

    Takes the wind out of your class warfare game.

    Good rant. To compare today’s wealthy to those of 18th century Europe is ridiculous.

  18. SandHills says:

    Admittedly a rant, but history seems to escape a depth of insight just as other topics you comment on.

    Having the wealthy maintain their “current” tax rate, you mean the one that Bush reduced – still allows a deduction on a horse of $70K- but advocating a hike in the middle class payroll taxes AND that home mortgage deduction? These are just the type of details you fail to mention in your pitch to drink the GOP coolaid. However you spin it, perception is more critical to this issue than facts – which actually is a major tactic right out of the GOP campaign textbook, right?

    But as rants go, mine was no less ridiculous than the one you made yesterday. And if you don’t see we are already on the brink of class warfare – the Madame Defarge-got-your-name-already-knitted kind, not barbs traded on an anonymous blog – well, “obtuse” makes a much better moniker than “CT8″ (why hasn’t it changed already to CT9?)

  19. Analysis of Mitt’s tax plan shows that it will create 800K jobs – all overseas.

  20. LeePHilI says:

    Bluffing. Doesn’t have a clue.

  21. aislander says:

    SandHills writes: “In a truly fair system, a dollar made as a laborer – which is taxed immediately out of their paycheck – should be taxed the same as a dollar made on an investment.”

    I would buy that if the laborer had a chance of going negative on his earnings the same as an investor…

  22. SandHills says:

    aislander, but how many investors are gambling with house money – in this case money needed tp pay a mortgage, or buy food. Losing on an investment is part of the game, that is also a tax deduction the average wage earner rarely uses. Kind of like going to Vegas and losing. But if you win big you better pay those taxes.

    But the IRS has their hand in the pocket of every wage earner from 1 Jan every year – and take away the home mortgage deduction, and the average middle class worker has no other option to reduce their tax burden other than kids – which again, old Mitt is on the ball there too.

  23. aislander says:

    SandHills: The “tax deduction” maxes at $3000. So, in the highest bracket, a losing investor gets the benefit of nearly $1000.

    Wow…

  24. SandHills says:

    aislander, and given all the schemes the wealthy have at their disposal to hide their wealth, much of it, EXCEPT for losses, is all they want to see the light of day anyway.

    Either you are wealthy pushing BS or don’t have a clue about how the wealthy has means to avoid taxes altogether that many of us don’t have. Show me a wealthy persons 1040, and I’ll bet that is all they want the government to know about….or they decide to give up their American citizenship, which they are doing in droves.

    So you and CT8 can defend the poor, poor, rich for being asked to pay more – saying the tax codes are already a burden for them….again on just the wealth that they declare. The tax havens and off-shore accounts are never acknowledged in these discussions. Hell, I’m no hypocrite – and if I was wealthy, you are damned right I would do all I could to reduce my tax liability.

    ….and then laugh at all you less fortunate fools defending me from having to pay any further taxes on any wealth that is actually transparent to the IRS. And laugh even louder at the prospect that payroll taxes get raised, or that the interest in home mortgage can no longer be deducted.

    Talk about lap dogs…some of you would be great replacements for QEII corgis

  25. aislander says:

    Envy is not an attractive quality, SandHills. The rich have done far more for you and this country than you ever will for anyone else.

    Do the math.

  26. CT8 – the money my employer pays me has already been taxed so why should I have to pay taxes on it?
    The dollar invested (regardless of source) has been taxed – the dollars earned are income.
    ‘wealth should maintain their current tax rate’ – then 60 seconds latter Mitt proposed cutting the top income rate to 20% and elimination of capital gains tax.

    Aislander – what the rich have done for this country is send US jobs overseas.

  27. aislander says:

    Learn a different tune, xpot. Who made the US a bad place to try to do business?

    THAT’S who sent jobs overseas…

  28. averageJose says:

    Spot analysis Aislander.

  29. averageJose says:

    How many of JFKerry’s sugar momma companies manufacture overseas?

  30. X, you need to brush up on your accounting. No point in teaching you the basics of corporate finance, you do not care.

    Kind of like pointing Buffett’s effective tax rate. While it takes he wind right out of your sails, a few weeks later the same lies are flowing from the left.

  31. aislander says:

    CT8: The left doesn’t care about truth. All they DO care about is that uninformed voters hear the lie of the day, which is then reinforced through repetition.

    It doesn’t matter if the lie is debunked if the seed is planted successfully. When lefties bring up the subject after some time has passed, the casual voter thinks, “Oh yeah: I remember hearing something about that.”

    That’s why losing arguments doesn’t faze lefties…

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