The Beginning Of The End
The Beginning Of The End By Michael T. Snyder - Kindle Version

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Show This To Anyone That Believes That Taxes Are Too Low

Every year average Americans pay dozens of different types of taxes, and yet many of our politicians are very open about the fact that they want to raise rates even higher and invent even more ways to bleed us all dry.  Someday historians will look back and be absolutely amazed at how stupid we were.  We have the most complicated tax code in all of human history and at this point the federal tax code is more than four times as long as the entire collected works of William Shakespeare.  In many places it is so incomprehensible that nobody actually understands what it means and the entire thing is absolutely riddled with loopholes from the beginning to the end.  Trust me, I used to study this stuff.  Nobody could ever read the entire thing - it is close to four million words long.  But that is just for federal income taxes.  We have a number of other taxes taken out of our paychecks such as state income taxes, Social Security taxes and Medicare taxes.  Sadly, the taxes taken out of your paycheck are only just the beginning.  As I will detail below, there are more than 40 other taxes that average Americans pay each year in addition to the taxes that are taken out of our paychecks.  Our politicians love to find ways that they can "raise revenue" without us feeling it.  Most people just focus on income tax rates and they forget about the dozens of other ways that they are bleeding us dry.  It really is kind of like "death by a thousand cuts", and of course the middle class gets hit the hardest.  The poor are exempt from many taxes, the ultra-wealthy are masters at cheating the system and avoiding taxes, and so the most pain is always felt by those in the middle.  Hard working middle class families and small businesses all over America are being financially raped by this insidious system.  If you know of anyone out there that believes that taxes are "too low", please show this article to them.

Just counting federal, state and local income taxes, some Americans will be paying marginal tax rates of over 50 percent in 2013.  But like I said, there are a lot of other taxes we pay than just those.

The following are 44 more taxes that at least some average Americans are paying now or will be paying soon other than federal, state and local income taxes...

#1 Building Permit Taxes

#2 Capital Gains Taxes

#3 Cigarette Taxes

#4 Court Fines (indirect taxes)

#5 Dog License Taxes

#6 Drivers License Fees (another form of taxation)

#7 Federal Unemployment Taxes

#8 Fishing License Taxes

#9 Food License Taxes

#10 Gasoline Taxes

#11 Gift Taxes

#12 Hunting License Taxes

#13 Inheritance Taxes

#14 Inventory Taxes

#15 IRS Interest Charges (tax on top of tax)

#16 IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)

#17 Liquor Taxes

#18 Luxury Taxes

#19 Marriage License Taxes

#20 Medicare Taxes

#21 Medicare Tax Surcharge On High Earning Americans Under Obamacare

#22 Obamacare Individual Mandate Excise Tax (if you don't buy "qualifying" health insurance under Obamacare you will have to pay an additional tax)

#23 Obamacare Surtax On Investment Income (a new 3.8% surtax on investment income that goes into effect next year)

#24 Property Taxes

#25 Recreational Vehicle Taxes

#26 Toll Booth Taxes

#27 Sales Taxes

#28 Self-Employment Taxes

#29 School Taxes

#30 Septic Permit Taxes

#31 Service Charge Taxes

#32 Social Security Taxes

#33 State Unemployment Taxes (SUTA)

#34 Tanning Tax (a new Obamacare tax on tanning services)

#35 Telephone Federal Excise Taxes

#36 Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Taxes

#37 Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Taxes

#38 Telephone State And Local Taxes

#39 Tire Taxes

#40 Tolls (another form of taxation)

#41 Traffic Fines (indirect taxation)

#42 Utility Taxes

#43 Vehicle Registration Taxes

#44 Workers Compensation Taxes

Sadly, this list is far from complete.  There are many more forms of taxation that could be included.

When you account for all forms of taxation, there are some Americans that "play by the rules" that are sending more than half of their incomes to the government.

This is why "tax avoidance" has become a multi-billion dollar industry in the United States.  People are sick and tired of being drained dry by a system that is way too complicated and way too unfair.

Posted below are 30 reasons why the U.S. tax system is stupid.  Some of these facts I have discussed before, and some of them are new.  You might want to be sitting down while you are reading this, because this list is likely to make many of you very angry...

1. Thanks to Proposition 30, many high income residents of California will be paying marginal income tax rates of 51.9% in 2013 if the fiscal cliff is not avoided.  Keep in mind that the 51.9% figure only includes federal and state income taxes.  It does not count any of the dozens of other taxes that we pay each year.

2. If a fiscal cliff deal is not reached, many residents of New York and Hawaii will also be paying marginal income tax rates of more than 50 percent.

3. If Americans fully funded the government through their taxes without any borrowing, the average American would have to work for 197 days just to meet the expenses incurred by government.

4. The U.S. tax code is now 3.8 million words long.  If you took all of William Shakespeare's works and collected them together, the entire collection would only be about 900,000 words long.

5. According to the National Taxpayers Union, U.S. taxpayers spend more than 7.6 billion hours complying with federal tax requirements each year.  Imagine what our society would look like if all of that time was spent on more economically profitable activities.

6. 75 years ago, the instructions for Form 1040 were two pages long.  Today, they are 189 pages long.

7. There have been 4,428 changes to the tax code over the last decade.  It is incredibly costly to change tax software, tax manuals and tax instruction booklets for all of those changes.

8. According to the National Taxpayers Union, the IRS currently has 1,999 different publications, forms, and instruction sheets that you can download from the IRS website.

9. Our tax system has become so complicated that it is almost impossible to file your taxes correctly.  For example, back in 1998 Money Magazine had 46 different tax professionals complete a tax return for a hypothetical household.  All 46 of them came up with a different result.

10. In 2009, PC World had five of the most popular tax preparation software websites prepare a tax return for a hypothetical household.  All five of them came up with a different result.

11. The IRS spends $2.45 for every $100 that it collects in taxes.  That is incredibly inefficient.

12. According to The Tax Foundation, the average American has to work until April 17th just to pay federal, state, and local taxes.  Back in 1900, "Tax Freedom Day" came on January 22nd.

13. When the U.S. government first implemented a personal income tax back in 1913, the vast majority of the population paid a rate of just 1 percent, and the highest marginal tax rate was just 7 percent.

14. Residents of New Jersey pay $1.64 in taxes for every $1.00 of federal spending that they get back.

15. The United States is the only nation on the planet that tries to tax citizens on what they earn in foreign countries.

16. According to Forbes, the 400 highest earning Americans pay an average federal income tax rate of just 18 percent.

17. Warren Buffett had an effective federal income tax rate of just 17.4 percent for 2010.

18. The top 20 percent of all income earners in the United States pay approximately 86 percent of all federal income taxes.

19. Sadly, as Bill Whittle has shown, you could take every single penny that every American earns above $250,000 and it would only fund about 38 percent of the federal budget.

20. The United States has the highest corporate tax rate in the world (35 percent).  In Ireland, the corporate tax rate is only 12.5 percent.  This is causing thousands of corporations to move operations out of the United States and into other countries.

21. Some tax havens are doing a booming business in setting up sham headquarters for U.S. corporations.  For example, the city of Zug, Switzerland only has a population of 26,000 people but it is the headquarters for 30,000 companies.

22. In 1950, corporate taxes accounted for about 30 percent of all federal revenue.  In 2012, corporate taxes will account for less than 7 percent of all federal revenue.

23. In a previous article, I discussed how many of our largest corporations make huge profits and yet pay less than nothing in taxes....

What U.S. corporations are able to get away with is absolutely amazing.

The following figures come directly out of a report by Citizens for Tax Justice.  These are combined figures for the tax years 2008, 2009 and 2010.

During those three years, all of the corporations below made a lot of money.  Yet all of them paid net taxes that were below zero for those three years combined.

How is that possible?  Well, it turns out that instead of paying in taxes to the federal government, they were actually getting money back.

So for these corporations, their rate of taxation was actually below zero.

If you have not seen these before, you are going to have a hard time believing some of these statistics.....

*Honeywell*

Profits: $4.9 billion

Taxes: -$34 million

*Fed Ex*

Profits: $3 billion

Taxes: -$23 million

*Wells Fargo*

Profits: $49.37 billion

Taxes: -$681 million

*Boeing*

Profits: $9.7 billion

Taxes: -$178 million

*Verizon*

Profits: $32.5 billion

Taxes: -$951 million

*Dupont*

Profits: $2.1 billion

Taxes -$72 million

*American Electric Power*

Profits: $5.89 billion

Taxes -$545 million

*General Electric*

Profits: $7.7 billion

Taxes: -$4.7 billion

Are you starting to get the picture?

24. Exxon-Mobil paid $15 billion in taxes in 2009, but not a single penny went to the U.S. government.

25. If Bill Gates gave every single penny of his entire fortune to the U.S. government, it would only cover the U.S. budget deficit for 15 days.

26. The number of traffic accidents spikes each year right around April 15th.  The following is from a recent Bloomberg article....

Deaths from traffic accidents around April 15, traditionally the last day to file individual income taxes in the U.S., rose 6 percent on average on each of the last 30 years of tax filing days compared with a day during the week prior and a week later, according to research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

27. The elite are not stupid.  They are not just going to sit there and let our politicians tax them into oblivion.  In fact, many of them will openly cheat if that is what it takes to avoid taxes.  Most of them have become masters at avoiding taxes or they have hired people that do that kind of work for them.  According to the IMF, the global elite are holding a total of 18 trillion dollars in offshore banking havens such as the Cayman Islands.

28. It has been reported that 80 percent of all international banking transactions involve offshore banks.  A whopping 1.4 trillion dollars is being held in offshore banks in the Cayman Islands alone.

29. An article that appeared in the Guardian estimated that a third of all the wealth on the entire planet is being kept in offshore banks.  One of the primary reasons for this is tax avoidance.

30. If a deal is not reached and the "fiscal cliff" is not avoided, the average American taxpayer can expect to pay about $3,500 more in taxes next year.

Clearly, the tax system that we are using right now is not working.

The big corporations and the ultra-wealthy have mastered the art of moving money offshore and using loopholes to make their tax burdens as low as possible.

So our politicians just keep finding more ways to squeeze more money out of the middle class and small businesses in order to make up the difference.

If you are a middle class American and you don't think that you are paying enough taxes already then you are one sick puppy.

They are draining blood from us in dozens of different ways, and they are constantly inventing new ways to tax all of us.

So what is the solution?

Well, a good first step would be to completely abolish the federal income tax.  It is terribly inefficient, it is way too complicated and it is terribly unfair.  It rewards those that know how to exploit loopholes and those that know how to cheat the system.  Those that "play by the rules" always get the short end of the stick.

Our government could easily be funded by tariffs and other forms of taxation that are more equitable.  There were vast stretches of American history when there was no federal income tax, and the federal government did just fine.

And of course one of our biggest problems is that the federal government simply spends way, way too much money.  There is not a single category of government spending that does not need to be reduced and/or made much more efficient.  The amount of waste that goes on in Washington D.C. is absolutely mind boggling.

Unfortunately, both political parties seem content to be married to the current system so I would not expect any significant changes any time soon.

So what do you think about all this?

Do you believe that taxes are too low, or do you believe that they are too high?

Please leave a comment below with your thoughts, and please share this article with as many people as you can.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joe-Palladino/100001624813101 Joe Palladino

    It has nothing to do with raising revenue. The taxes talked about being raised covers the deficit for 8 days. It’s about class warfare, plain and simple. Way to unite country Obozo!

    • 2Gary2

      the rich have been waging and winning class warfare. Time for payback

      • http://www.facebook.com/fzelch Franklin Zelch

        you obviously did not read the article, did you? If you had you would understand that it is not nor has it ever been “the Rich” waging any class warfare. But the greedy overbearing Democrats in Government sure have done a great job at it, to include Obozo.

        • Geraldus

          Yet the Republicans, by and large, do the same things as the Democrats: they raise taxes and increase bureacucracy and vote for measures that reduce our freedom still more.

  • richard

    THERE IS NOTHING THE GOVERNMENT CAN DO TO SAVE US. THIS COUNTRY HAS GONE TO FAR. IF YOU RAISE TAXES THERE WILL BE LESS MONEY GOING INTO THE ECONOMY,. WHICH WILL CAUSE LOSSES IN GOODS AND SERVICES ( MORE LAY OFFS ) IF YOU CUT SPENDING THAT WILL CAUSE MORE PEOPLE TO LOSE THERE JOBS. GOVERNMENT WORKERS, ECT. IF WE DO BOTH IT WILL GET EVEN WORSE. WE HAVE A DOUBLE EDGED SWORD HERE. THERE IS TO MUCH DEBT AND JUST THE DEBT ON THE MONEY WE HAVE BORROWED WILL BURY US. WERE GOING TO GO BACK IN TIME TO THE THIRTIES BUT IT WILL BE A LOT WORSE. OUR COUNTRY IS A COUNTRY THAT IS USED TO HAVING IT ALL AND WHEN THAT ENDS IT IS GOING TO BE UGLY. GOD HELP US ALL..

    • http://ericsprott.blogspot.ca/ ESB

      Peter Schiff did an amazing article similar to this in the Wall Street Journal today.

      http://schiffblog.blogspot.ca/

      • richard

        ESB, I KNOW WHO PETER SCHIFF IS AND I HAVE A LOT OF RESPECT FOR HIS OPINIONS, HOWEVER I HAVE NEVER SEEN THAT TAPE. TO ME HE SOUNDS A LITTLE UP BEAT TO HOW I FEEL.

  • http://karmaeconomics.blogspot.com/ lavista4u

    The government does not need to tax you. They are printing money anyway from private fed. The entire tax system is based on fraud. Its the biggest scam on humanity to take your money away.

    If US government abolishes tax. It will work fine for ever.

    This whole scam starts with “loan” and “interest” on money that does not exists. Like many other things in life that humanity has being played on. Taxing you tops the list.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/XFAEMN7TP3UPWEAV7KPNZQ33LM Paul

      Inflation is another tax. Printing money causes inflation, so it is a tax. I agree that they should stop taxing us and just print money. At least that fairly taxes everyone, including the rich.

  • J M

    “The United States is the only nation on the planet that tries to tax citizens on what they earn in foreign countries.” This is one reason that people will continue to leave the U.S. and renounce their citizenship. This destroys U.S. competitiveness. Why would Americans invest overseas? This just kills American income.

    • Jagrick

      The USA is also the biggest spender on it’s military in the world and 2nd is not even close AT ALL.

    • furkan

      You sound you haven’t been in Turkey before :) We consume the most expensive oil and electronics producuts etc. around the world! :) A sample for you: If we want to buy a mobile phone out of the country we can not order online! It is prohibited by laws. We can only bring cell phone if we travel out of country. When we come back, a signal blocks the phone to be used. So we go to the local tax office and pay 115 TL ($70) then register it in a passport! There is another law which adress’ that: 1 phone right for 2 years :) If i buy iphone 5 16GB in my country it cost almost $1400! Look at this scam.

  • Washington76

    Russian Paper Compares Obama’s Fools to Stalin’s Fools 12/06/12 Source: Pravda

    http://www.reagancoalition.com/articles/2012/20121206003-compare-fools.html#YYIzMOQft5owrCdz.99

  • markthetruth

    #45 The lottery especially the POWER BALL entices the old,poor,the desperate to spend there savings,food money all for a 40/60 Tax scam . Give it to them they have created the biggest illusion , media hype , brainwashed Americans to give their money away for this dream only to be disappointed even after knowing their odds are are as good as getting hit by a meteor.

    • Hambone

      Yes, unfortunately the lottery is a tax on the stupid.

      • 2Gary2

        you got that right!

    • Mondobeyondo

      Yes indeed. The Powerball lottery is simply a tax against the poor.

      And yet, even I bought into the frenzy. Why? Well…

      Because if you don’t play, you can’t win. Or so they say.

      Problem is, if you DO play, you can’t win! Oh sure, two people won. TWO PEOPLE out of about, what, 150 million? Such great odds!

      There’s nothing wrong with dreaming. But… oh gosh. I’d rather play blackjack at a Las Vegas casino. (Won $20 at Caesars Palace in 2011. Wowww!!

    • http://twitter.com/ignatzz Ignatz

      Don’t play it, you idiot. Duh.

  • mainstreeteconomist

    And the worst tax of all:

    #45 Currency Debasement.

    So what do you think about all this?
    Michael

    (1) It is a waste of time to discuss taxes without giving an equal amount of attention to spending.

    (2) The US government has financial liabilities in excess of $200 trillion. Massive tax increases and massive spending cuts will both be required to service this debt.

    (3) Any US politician using the phrase “tax cut” is a fool or a liar.

    (4) It is not possible to cut taxes when you have a fiscal deficit. All you are doing here is trading taxes for debt. If you have to pay interest on this new debt, this so called “tax cut” is really a tax increase.

    Federal Deficit by Year

    2007 $161 billion
    2008 $459 billion
    2009 $1,413 billion
    2010 $1,293 billion
    2011 $1,300 billion
    2012 $1,089 billion

    (5) If Americans are not willing to cut spending, then taxes are too low.

    (6) It is now time to pay the piper. The party is over.

    But…

    I have to agree that our current system for collecting taxes needs to be replaced.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Brooks/1204364618 Robert Brooks

      You silly person. You call yourself an economist? How droll! Firstly, THE DEBT IS NOT OURS… I REPEAT THE DEBT IS NOT OURS!! Sorry to yell but some of you need to get it through your thick skulls that the debt belongs to the USof A inc. Not the people. The legal definition of the United States is : Congress assembled. We the people are not in the united states. We can own nothing ( legally, their laws… Of which we acquiesce to by default) The United States for America ceased to exist with the passage of the Emergency Banking Act…

      Subject: .The Bankruptcy of The United States
      United States Congressional Record, March 17, 1993 Vol. 33, page H-1303

      “Mr. Speaker, we are here now in chapter 11.. Members of Congress are
      official trustees presiding over the greatest reorganization of any Bankrupt
      entity in world history, the U.S. Government. We are setting forth
      hopefully, a blueprint for our future. There are some who say it is a
      coroner’s report that will lead to our demise.

      It is an established fact that the United States Federal Government has
      been dissolved by the Emergency Banking Act, March 9, 1933, 48 Stat. 1,
      Public Law 89-719; declared by President Roosevelt, being bankrupt and
      insolvent. H.J.R. 192, 73rd Congress m session June 5, 1933 – Joint
      Resolution To Suspend The Gold Standard and Abrogate The Gold Clause
      dissolved the Sovereign Authority of the United States and the official
      capacities of all United States Governmental Offices, Officers, and
      Departments and is further evidence that the United States Federal
      Government exists today in name only.

      The receivers of the United States Bankruptcy are the International
      Bankers, via the United Nations, the World Bank and the International
      Monetary Fund. All United States Offices, Officials, and Departments are now
      operating within a de facto status in name only under Emergency War Powers.
      With the Constitutional Republican form of Government now dissolved, the
      receivers of the Bankruptcy have adopted a new form of government for the
      United States. This new form of government is known as a Democracy, being an
      established Socialist/Communist order under a new governor for America. This
      act was instituted and established by transferring and/or placing the Office
      of the Secretary of Treasury to that of the Governor of the International
      Monetary Fund. Public Law 94-564, page 8, Section H.R. 13955 reads in part:
      “The U.S. Secretary of Treasury receives no compensation for representing
      the United States.”

      • mainstreeteconomist

        Thank you for explaining why there is no leadership in Washington!

    • MichaelfromTheEconomicCollapse

      Very good comment.

      Michael

    • kathy k

      This debt situation in this country cannot be fixed there are not enough generations to pay the piper

    • El Pollo de Oro

      In the words of Alex Jones: “If you’ve studied Rome, you know that wealthy nations do collapse into Third World squalor when they allow their currency to be debased.”

  • Mark

    You do,

    It is called the clean air act!!!

  • Jagrick

    Democrats want to spend and tax and republicans want to cut programs and make it harder on the poor. They both are wrong IMO.

  • 2Gary2

    tax the rich hard and spread the wealth. Also tax deadbeat corporations hard. This is the lowest rate in history that the rich have been taxed at. Tax the MF hard

    • Hambone

      One problem with this (and there are several) is that as this article demonstrates, the super-rich find a way to get out of it. By “taxing the rich hard,” as you suggest, you tend to target those people who work their butts of for their fortune, not the John Kerrys of the world.

  • Mark

    #13, by 1921 the top tax rate became 75%. We then started to go into a depression and the new President Harding followed by President Coolidge cut the top rate to 25% and cut spending in half. We then had several good years before the government spending increased again. We need to do this again if it is not too late already.

    • Colin

      According to this website, The Great Depression was caused by,

      “The unbalanced economy had no stable base to fall back upon. Production
      far exceeded demand; wealth was unevenly distributed; the boom in stock
      market prices was based mainly on borrowed money, not real value.” (http://wiki.answers.com/Q/How_did_the_unstable_economy_in_the_1920%27s_contribute_to_the_great_depression)

      Does this sound faintly familiar? So, you are praising the very economy that led to that depression. So, if you are believed that economy was good, I must assume that you think the current economy is likewise good.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Brooks/1204364618 Robert Brooks

    I agree taxes are too high, ridiculously high but… You state near the end of the missive how corporations pay next to nothing in taxes… Yet you show only 8 giant companies and their combined tax exposure is over 10 billion dollars! Now, maybe as a writer you can view 10 billion as a paltry sum, I imagine you spend that much on tips to your many servants ~ smirk~

    Additionally, the resources large corporations use are taxed at the supplier level. I bet that adds up to more billions.

    Furthermore, #11 point states, the IRS pays 2.45 for every hundred dollars it collects and adds the caveat that is inefficient! paying 80 dollars to get a hundred is still good business. Being a business man, 2.45 sounds like a bargain. 30 times investment. ~smirk again~

    To conclude. Yes, it would be nice if taxes were next to nothing. The behemoth government apparatchik is a monster the likes of which has never been seen in the history of the world. All one needs to do to understand who these monsters are is; Look in the mirror. We will work this out, We allowed traitors and criminals to take over our land. Currently, we are still slaves ( only in the legal sense) so we have some growing pains in store for us. Minimize your tax exposure the best way you can or don’t… It’s all up to you.

    • Hambone

      On point 11, I disagree… they are just collecting money. 2.45% just to collect money is wildly inefficient. They are not investing, and this is not an ROI.

      That’s money WE earn, WE have to give, and they waste away with overhead.

    • http://www.facebook.com/joe.kleinkamp Joe Kleinkamp

      You missed the point. The 10 billion you cite is not tax. It is payments from the treasury TO those corporations thus the term ‘negative’ tax. Like the low income single parent who earns $15,000 and has $1,000 fed tax deducted from her paycheck but gets a $9,000 refund from the IRS after all the deductions and credits for single head of household, child care, earned income, etc.

    • MichaelfromTheEconomicCollapse

      Robert:

      All of the tax amounts shown for corporations are negative amounts. So the ten billion dollars is actually in the other direction.

      And the IRS is not a “business” and it is not making investments. Rather, it costs the government and U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars and billions of hours just to comply with the horribly complicated system they have set up.

      Yes, it is most definitely inefficient.

      Michael

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.kleinkamp Joe Kleinkamp

    The nominal top tax rate is 35% which serves the largest corporations well as a number to feign outrage over while their effective tax rates are actually payments FROM the government. If you hand your lobbyists a few million in walking around money to pay congressmen in exchange for tweaking the IRS tax code to suit your liking you can afford to laugh at even a 90% nominal tax rate.

  • Hambone

    I would love a single, consumption-based tax. I know it sounds unrealistic, but there is no reason it could not be done.

    Amongst the many reasons I think this would work well is that for the first time, there would be transparency in how much we are paying. As Michael’s article suggest, many people don’t notice the nickles and dimes and probably equate their tax burden with what they see on their 1040.

    If suddenly the nickle and time taxes were abolished and we had to pay $1.50 for a $1.00 Snickers bar or $15,000 for a $10,000 car, I’ll bet a lot of people would suddenly say, “HEY! How come we pay so much in taxes?”

    Now, the demon-crats especially, want to tax, tax, tax. With a consumption-based tax, I bet we make a few more fiscal conservatives in the world.

  • http://profiles.google.com/maruadventurer john mcginnis

    You’re 23 though informative belies the fundamental fact that companies don’t pay taxes, its their customers who do. Any company that gets taxed merely passes that tax cost as a component of doing business and ends up in the product cost of the goods and services offered. A more enlightening item here would be to show the % of tax cost of each product offered for those companies that did pay taxes.

  • lilbear68

    the congress is totally responsible for this, all the president can do is sign or veto
    the majority in the house, where ALL bills regarding money must originate, and senate changes periodically but policy and direction has rarely changed

  • Patriot Alice

    If unemployment benefits can be taxed, why shouldn’t welfare benefits be taxed too, and if they won’t pay their taxes, their welfare benefits should end…It’s only fair, right?

  • Dan

    Michael, I enjoy reading your articles, but feel compelled to point out that the “first” personal income tax in this country was instituted in the 1860s under Abraham Lincoln! It is a common misconception that the 16th amendment, in 1913 bought the income tax into existence, but in fact the amendment was promoted and passed to close a “loophole” in certain parts of the existing income tax created by the Supreme Court in a case called Pollock (sp) vs. Farmer’s Loan and Trust. While it is true that the early income tax was essentially dormant up until 1913, it was still on the books.
    Incidentally, “Social Security”…more accurately Socialist Insecurity….is actually a flat income tax. Look up the law itself and it states; “there is hereby imposed on the taxable income, ….as measured by wages”.
    The absolute best information on the “income” tax is a book by Peter Hendrickson called Cracking the Code. http://www.losthorizons.com

    Hendrickson exposed the truth about the limited scope of the tax, and was ultimately persecuted and jailed to suppress his information.
    In a very brief nutshell, due to Constitutional restrictions, the income tax does not apply to the vast majority of what Americans earn in the private sector. However, people are tricked and also pressured and coerced into declaring the “money” they receiver as being taxable. In addition, private sector payers are tricked into reporting as taxable, payments that are actually inherently non-taxable.

    This brief “nutshell” description does not give the book its due. and in order to truly understand the nuances of how this tax scam operates one should read the book.

    Incidentally, there is a group of people and collection of receipts that do qualify as taxable income…it is just that a majority of people do not fall under either category.

  • grumpyhillbilly

    Forced purchasing of insurance should be considered fascist and taxation

  • kathy k

    I have a really good idea EVERYONE stop paying your income taxes for 1 week. I mean EVERYONE! That would get the governments attention. Or 2 weeks or 3 weeks whatever it takes.

    • richard

      KATHY I HAVE FRIENDS THAT DID THAT AND ENDED UP IN JAIL. THE BEST WAY TO WAKE THE GOVERNMENT UP IS TO STOP SPENDING ALL TOGETHER FOR A COUPLE WEEKS. IT WOULD HURT THE LOCAL GOVERNMENTS AND STATES WORSE BUT IT WOULD WAKE THE REST OF THEM UP

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joe-Palladino/100001624813101 Joe Palladino

    Obama is not interested in fixing anything. He is interested in destroying and declaring himself King.

    • Ralfine

      Why do people keep whining about that single person on top?

      Is there nobody else living in that country? Or is it just Fuhrer, we follow you, until the end, then we condemn you and get a new Fuhrer we can blame for everything?!

  • arizonadiane

    We’re doomed. The sad part of this is maybe 10-20 years ago if we had honest politicians in office this could have been diverted. Everyone knows this has been ongoing for years and no one wanted to deal with it. OR — this has been the plan all along which is probably the truth. “one world order”. Anyway we say it though, Obama is planning on taking full advantage of this crisis and will probably be King Obama in the end. Do I sound depressed? Sure am

  • 2Gary2

    Why are conservatives such low information dolts???

    Republicans love touting the benefits of trickle-down economics and
    are still doing it in the big debate over tax cuts for the wealthy. The
    idea is simple: The more money the people on top make, the more the
    people below will benefit from the dripping down of that
    prosperity. The hidden agenda here, of course, is the rationalization of
    inequality. By linking the welfare of working-class Americans directly
    to the prosperity of the rich, the Republicans can protect the insulated
    interests of corporations and the wealthy without the fear of backlash.

    In reality, however, the only thing that trickles down in the
    Republican universe is you-know-what. Our economy is actually a trickle
    “up” economy instead, based on a lopsided pyramid scheme that ensures
    the rising up of prosperity rather than the dripping down.

    • RedDog60

      I enjoyed a cartoon depiction of the old and never works as well as promoted “trickle down theory”, someone is feeding a fat, healthy horse good, clean oats. The many little birds are at the other end of the horse picking out the “trickle down” bits of oats available after the horse is done with them. THAT is how “trickle down” works.

  • 2Gary2

    Tax the rich hard–here is why:

    The only way that the riches are going to trickle down from the wealthy
    to the rest of us is if we shake the rich so hard that the dollar bills
    and coins fall out of their pockets. That is the tax-the-rich approach
    and naturally they are fighting back.

    What we need if we can’t tax the money out of the rich to trickel down
    on the rest of us, we must prevent them from getting that money in the
    first place. Double minimum wages, eliminate all corporate welfare,
    enact strong labor laws and require businesses to pay livable wages and
    provide basic level of benefits. Those changes can prevent much of the
    wealth from reaching those elites at the top.

    Or, we can let them keep their incomes and tax them at 90% with no deductions. I prefer the preventive approach.

    • G13Man

      80% tax on all money going out of usa

      25 %tax on all imports [except for raw materials]

      no deductions for people or corporations

      fines & jail & increased taxes on all violators
      [ not one or the other, all 3 ! ]

      min wage for all fed&state& politicians [If you want more get a job]

      drop all entitlement programs except food stamps [ no junk or pre made foods on food stamps ,no soda]

      NO write-off for people or corporations
      [if you needed it for business, you will buy it or your competitors will take your business]

  • 2Gary2

    Proof conservatives are clueless:

    Republicans love touting the benefits of trickle-down economics and
    are still doing it in the big debate over tax cuts for the wealthy. The
    idea is simple: The more money the people on top make, the more the
    people below will benefit from the dripping down of that
    prosperity. The hidden agenda here, of course, is the rationalization of
    inequality. By linking the welfare of working-class Americans directly
    to the prosperity of the rich, the Republicans can protect the insulated
    interests of corporations and the wealthy without the fear of backlash.

    In reality, however, the only thing that trickles down in the
    Republican universe is you-know-what. Our economy is actually a trickle
    “up” economy instead, based on a lopsided pyramid scheme that ensures
    the rising up of prosperity rather than the dripping down.

  • 2Gary2

    syrin–the rich pay the lowest rate in the history of the 20th century. You need to stop trying to make up your own facts and get a clue to the real facts. The rich do not even come close to paying their fair share.

    You must pay high malpractice insurance if you are really a doctor and are this dumb.

    • RedDog2

      I understand it from two perspectives, the top several percent highest income folks do pay the majority of federal income tax out of the whole pie, BUT, they pay a lower final percent of annual income due to all the tax shelters, off shore, capital gains, etc, something like 15%, there abouts, compared to many middle class in the 20some percentile to maybe 30 percent. In other words, 15% of billions from fewer people pays maybe a much larger chunk of all fed income tax collected in one year from everyone than does 25% from the many millions of middle class. I wish for a very flat tax, maybe part as sales tax to capture the people off the radar of the IRS.
      How can anyone argue a flat 20% paid by everyone ? Maybe do 12% for below poverty level. That’s it, no more no less, no many thousands of pages of tax code !!

  • 2Gary2

    taxes do not have any impact on folks working or investing–warren buffet.

    • http://www.facebook.com/fzelch Franklin Zelch

      Oh sure, like Warren Buffet is anyone that you should be listening to. The Libtard owes how much in back taxes? and he fights to not have to pay it.

  • 2Gary2

    actually I would simply take 99%$ of their wealth and redistribute it. No taxing needed. No one needs to be a billionaire or have 100′s of millions.

    • Jagrick

      Ahh the not so land of the free. What is the point in even getting up in the morning if you had your way. Just lay in bed and get a hand out. Sickening thought. I am in no way rich or even middle class but i can’t see taking away from someone that earned it. A lot of them had ideas or talent and they got what they did by hard work and stepping on the little guy. Life isn’t fair bud so deal with it.

    • Ralfine

      I would nationalize the defense industry, and make it a non-profit organization, with caps on the salaries of the directors and managers.

      THAT would put a severe cap on government expenses and on income for congressmen and lobbyists.

      Next, I’d get rid of the lobbyists. Anyone trying to influence the government with money is charged with bribery and put in a maximum security prison without internet access.

      Put a cap on financial contributions to political parties by individuals and organisations.

    • http://www.facebook.com/fzelch Franklin Zelch

      so take your wealth and ‘redistribute’ it. Leave my wealth, that I work for, alone

  • Jagrick

    Hey the propaganda machine says at the lowest unemployment rate in a long time. I feel so much better now..oh wait, first i have to find a job.

  • Ralfine

    Poor people won’t have to worry much about inheritance tax.

    And if the grandparents are smart, they will part with thear earthly possessions while they are still alive. All those spare towels and bedsheets, the full pantry, and all that cash in the bank.

    Give it to the grandkids and new parents among all your relatives. They’ll remember you forever and make you immortal.

  • Colin

    I believe that we should have two levels of taxation. There should be a level of taxation when our nation isn’t at war, and there should be a level of taxation when our nation is at war. One of the issues that arose during President Bush’s administration, and impacted the administration of his successor, President Obama, is that our country didn’t raise taxes to support the War on Terror. Instead, our nation cut taxes. This is unprecedented in the history of our country.

    • Ralfine

      When actually America wasn’t at war in the last 100 years?

    • RedDog2

      I also believe that to be true. Amen !!! I thought we learned something from Vietnam quagmire. How soon we forget, thanks George W, Rumsfeld and Cheney !!! Turns out THEY are the WMD’s, and a friend can’t even go hunting with Cheney without getting shot in the face.
      The trillions spent to electively create a war in Iraq and it was unfunded, put it on the credit card for first time in history. And the costs for decades to come, mental health issues, PTSD, loss of economic income, broken families, it is a staggering cost when all summed up !! The stat is something like every 15 minutes another veteran commits suicide. The mental health care available after multiple deployments in the Mid East is woefully underfunded. I hope we collectively have learned something about Global Stomping and War Mongering that we do not forget in just a few more decades.

  • Washington76

    Today: 4.3 million of these are on welfare, 47.1 million on food stamps (SNAP) and 5.6 million on unemployment insurance for a total of some 57 million individuals on some form of government assistance program.

    Adding to this, an increasing number of baby boomers, retiring to the already bloated entitlement rolls (some estimated 5.6% or 17.8 million).

    One has a pretty dismal picture of USA’s increasing poverty rate. Add to this the unbelievable statistic that some estimated 21 million children in the USA live in poverty, receiving lo-cost government help (possibly illegal aliens, too).

    So far, adding these catagories up (some overlap is evident): approximately 95 million individuals currently living in the USA are in some form of government assistance programs or receiving some form of government assistance. Roughly 1/3 of the country is on “the dole.!!!!” Think about this.

    Now, on to household incomes: 14.9 million received some form of (SNAP) totalling 13% (in 2011)
    47 states reported increases in enrollments (DC, AL,HI the highest) Oregon = 18.9% highest of all.
    18 year olds and older living with parents = 17.9% up from 16% in 2007
    Then there’s General Assistance ( a catchall catagory) = 2.9% of all american households.

    How is this “redistribution of American income” going to ultimately work out? HUH??? The numbers just don’t add up. Credit Card debt: 2011 = $48 billion in new debt; 424% than in 2010; 572% than in 2009. How in the world is this conceivably sustainable???? And Bernanke is printing 40 billion/month in new money (Operation Twist)!!!!Pray.

    • 2Gary2

      you left out corporate welfare which is way more than any welfare for the poor.

      • Mark

        From the Blaze. According to a US Senate report total welfare spending equals approximately $168 per day for every househoid in poverty, this is higher than the $137 median income per day. Spending on federal welfare benefits, if convereted into cash payments,equals enough to provide $30.60 per hour. 40 hours per week, to each household living below poverty. The median household hourly wage is $25.03. After accounting for federal taxes, the median hourly wage drops to to between $21.50 and $23.45, depending on a households deductions and filling status. State and local taxes further reduce the median households hourly earnings. By contrast, welfare benefits are not taxed.

        The report identified roughly 80 overlaping federal means-tested welfare programs that together represented the single largest budget item in 2011- more than the nation spends on Social Security,Medicare, or national defense. The total amount spent on these federal welfare programs, when taken together with appoximately $280 billion in state contributions, amounted to roughly $1 trillion. Nearly 95% of these costs come from four categories of spending: medical assistance, cash assistance, food assistance,and social/ housing assistance. Under Obama’s 2013 budget proposel, means tested spending would increase an additional 30% over the next four years.

        Well Gary,in our last go around to bring you a step closer to the real world, you refered to me and other conservatives with rude remarks when I brought to your attention an article from Zerohedge. This is straight from your beloved government. How they take our tax dollars and waste them is another story.The FACT is that we taxpayers already spend more for welfare takers than the median income taxpayer EARNS . And you think that a taxpayer that EARNS $250,000 a year should give the federal government 70% plus state and local taxes,could leave the person that EARNED that money, about $50,000 after taxes. Based on the $30.60 per hour rate, the welfare taker rakes in $63,648 per year since they do not pay taxes on their benefits. Let’s cut corporate welfare, generational welfare and plain old regular welfare and defense. With those cuts we can shrink this bloated government to a smaller size and be closer to competing with other economies in the world so that private enterprise can create jobs. Let’s cut taxes to those that EARN their income. Everyone, including welfare takers, should pay a little bit of tax at the national level. Let’s grt rid of the income tax below a certain amount and instead have a national sales tax of about 10%. Let’s put in some tarriffs on some imported goods as China does to our exports and tax unearned income at around 15 to 20% above a certain level and tax corporations at around 20%. That sounds more like a tax system that might be fair. Everyone pays a little and you still get to tax the rich. You,Gary might even have a dog in the tax fight under that system and in turn might complain if the government tries to raise your taxes on you.. Just think what effect we the taxpayers might have if we all had a dog in the tax fight.

    • gman

      Do not forget the over paid employees of the bloated government. politicians [who just voted their own pay raise] grants, r&d and other over board spending. I am tired of hearing “i’d earn more in private business’ [then do it].. min wage would be the proper pay scale for ALL gov employee’s and politicians and construction.

    • Geraldus

      I cannot agree that retirees are doing anything to cause economic problems by accepting the government payback in the form of retirement income. They paid for Social Security for a working lifetime and the program is only insolvent b’c the government stole the money for its foreign wars and other questionable causes.

      Abolish Social Security, if most of the people want to do so, for people only now entering the workforce. When it is reserved for the purpose intended it is fine. It still can be made available to those wanting to enter a government sponsored retirement program but we will have to get more responsible politicians and make them accountable for their actions. Perhaps a responsible Third Party would be another good idea.

      • RedDog60

        I forget hard stats, but before SS, elderly people were impoverished in a HUGE % and went to live at “poor farms” which cost tax payer money, too. They also raised gardens and some animals to help feed themselves, but it was more costly than workers investing in, paying in to SS all their lives and drawing back later. SS cannot and should not be called “entitlement” and by law has nothing to do with national deficits in spending. The dang idiots in DC need to keep their grubby paws out of the SS funds for wars and the like, and they should be required to have same retirement and healthcare as the rest of the nation, problems would then be solved in no time !!

  • 2Gary2

    There is PLENTY of money to tax the rich and spread the wealth. No more BS about if you take 100% it will only make a small dent(only crazy conservatives believe that anyways)

    In the United States, the 400 richest people now have as much wealth as 185 million people combined, nearly 60% of the entire population. US millionaire households have at least $46 trillion in wealth, yet only one-tenth of one percent of the population makes one million dollars a year.

    $46 trillion. Can you comprehend how much money that is and
    what could be done with that stunning amount of wealth, the
    implications, the possibilities? Especially given the capabilities of
    modern technology. Think about how we could evolve society with that
    astonishing amount of wealth, and how much better off we would ALL be if
    we did.

  • 2Gary2

    More reasons to tax the rich HARD:

    1. The super-rich are stealing our fair share of productivity .

    2. Americans really want a wealth distribution more like Sweden’s.

    3. Everything we hear about government debt is wrong.

    4. We are under-taxed, not over-taxed.

    5. Government jobs are just as good as private sector jobs.

    6. Wall Street needs to be shrunk (until we can drown it in a bathtub).

    http://www.alternet.org/economy/6-economic-facts-life-america-allow-rich-run-our-wealth?akid=9779.146440.fMeDwb&rd=1&src=newsletter757454&t=3&paging=off

    • DownWithLibs

      What on earth are you smoking?

  • http://twitter.com/JonahWeber2 ★Jonah Weber★

    MY DISGUS!! IS RIGHT OR SHOULD I SAY MY DISGUST WITH THE NEW COMMENT SECTION… I USED TO BE SMASH THE CONTROL MACHINE. BUT SINCE I USED A OLD EMAIL THAT I CANT REMEMBER THE PASSWORD TO IT!! SO IT WONT LET ME CHANGE IT !!!PLUS THE OLD COMMENT SECTION ONE WASNT ALL BLARING WHITE !!AND I REMEMBER 100 TO 300 COMMENTS NOW YOU ONLY GET 50 OR SO !!SMASH THE CONTROL MACHINE NOW IS GOT TO CHANGE HIS NAME TO POST IM DISGUSTED!!

    • MichaelfromTheEconomicCollapse

      I understand your frustration. Change can be difficult.

      Unfortunately, I am no longer able to use the old comment system. I found that a certain company that produces software that I depend upon forced a change upon me.

      So I was faced with a choice – either eliminate comments entirely or find a new comment system.

      I did not want to do away with the comments because I really value them. So I chose to go with Disqus because they seemed to be the best alternative that I could find.

      And Disqus actually works really well once you get used to it. So I hope that you will be patient and give it a chance. :)

      Michael

      • 2Gary2

        as I said the conservatives can not figure this out. They are not too bright. I as a liberal had already registered with disqus and the change presented no problems for me. It really must be frustrating being a conservative. BTW conservatives–the moon is not made of cheese.

    • DownWithLibs

      It gave me problems too. When I had to verify my id (again!), I changed my password and it seems to let me be me again. You just need to be patient… and thanks Michael for not just doing away with the comment section.

  • americalsgt

    Maybe I missed it, but 2.3% tax on medical devices effective 1/1.Since the law is so ambiguous, most manufacturers of any medical device are adding the tax; just in case. This is then passed on to the dealer who passes it on to the consumer.

  • DownWithLibs

    Run for Pres. I’ll vote for you!!!!

  • 2Gary2

    simply look at the IRS data to see what % of the population make how much income. 200,000 per year is rich by far. Tax the heck out of them.

  • 2Gary2

    nut job alert–are you serious or just making what you said up?

  • 2Gary2

    another clueless conservative. Don’t you realize than when ever you post such stupidity you prove my points for me? Keep it up and keep loosing elections.

  • 2Gary2

    thanks–do not be too hard on syrian–he is not the sharpest tool in the shed. He is also a few fries short of a happy meal

  • http://twitter.com/ignatzz Ignatz

    If you actually want any credibility, you should stop claiming that your speeding ticket is a “tax.” Or interest on your taxes because you were a procrastinating asshole who didn’t pay on time when everybody else was able to is a “tax.” It’s not. It’s interest, dumbass. I also had no idea that my unemployment insurance was a tax. I thought it was insurance.

    And I had no idea that the 20 dollars I gave the nice lady in the city clerk’s office who prepared my marriage license was a “tax.” Oddly, I was unaware that a fee for a once-in-a-lifetime service should make me furious.

    Dumbfuck.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004668064291 Fred JOhnson

    Our problems started the day that serving for public office went from being a civic DUTY to being a CAREER… once that happened, the ones in charge started to change the world so that they would benefit the most… and they’re still doing it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jon-Kelley/1204480187 Jon Kelley

    Don’t forget – if you OVERpay taxes one year and they send the money back to you, it’s counted as “income” and you are taxed on it.

    Again

  • Geraldus

    If the Federal Income Tax is abolished ( I would like to see that happen if it is not replaced by other inequitous federal taxes), then state Income taxes should be abolished too.

    State Income Tax forms can be at least as complicated and unfair as the national ones. Then you may have to pay state income taxes twice: once to your own State and then to other states you have worked in, in any given year. It is a huge burden on personal resources and on our time and privacy.

    You can easily get the impression of being an involuntary slave when filling out tax forms and keeping records for the government and telling all your private business to bureaucrats and administrations both locally and federally.

    We have gone astray from the old principles and the traditional forms of taxation (import and export taxes nationally, though I know not what locally).

    Four or five states do not have income taxes at all and a few also have no sales tax. One way or another we are being bled dry, more or less, with the totality of taxes nationally and locally.

    Imo taxes should be paid only on luxuries and on trading privileges with other nations. “Free Trade” costs our nation too much; I don’t want to support China’s economy and government, but I do want to see a resurgence in American production and the jobs that go with it.

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