Most don't pay Federal income taxes ... expect rich to pay more

Most Americans say the rich don't pay enough taxes


The poll found that many Americans believe rich people to be intelligent and hardworking but also greedy and less honest than the average American. Nearly six in 10, or 58 percent, say the rich don't pay enough in taxes, while 26 percent believe the rich pay their fair share and 8 percent say they pay too much. Even among those who describe themselves as "upper class" or "upper middle class," more than half — or 52 percent — said upper-income Americans don't pay enough in taxes; only 10 percent said they paid too much. This upper tier was more likely to say they are more financially secure now than 10 years ago — 62 percent, compared to 44 percent for those who identified themselves as middle class and 29 percent for the lower class. They are less likely to report problems in paying rent or mortgage, losing a job, paying for medical care or other bills and cutting back on household expenses.
Is it true that only 53 percent of Americans pay income tax?

In 2009, according to a memo from the Joint Committee on Taxation, a bi-partisan Congressional committee, only 49 percent of Americans owed money on their Federal income tax returns. So yes, it's true that more than half of all Americans paid no Federal income tax in the tax year 2009, and the number of people who did pay taxes was even lower -- 51 percent, not 53 percent. For tax year 2011, the non-partisan Tax Policy Center estimates that only 54 percent of Americans will pay Federal income tax.
Comment: I pay taxes. And I think I could pay more taxes. But there is a disconnect between these facts: 46% don't pay Federal income taxes ....and 58% say the rich don't pay enough in taxes. Jim Peet's taxes proposals:
  • End corporate income taxes altogether (not property taxes!). Every penny of paid corporate income tax is just filtered into the costs of the product anyway. It's a hidden tax. Corporate income taxes encourage wasteful deductions (like a company buying a suite at a sport's stadium)
  • Tax all income the same: Dividends, capital gains, earned income
  • Eliminate deductions: Mortgage interest for one
  • Have 3 or 4 simple brackets: 5%, 10%, 15%, 20% (and these are not cast in concrete). But everyone should pay some federal income tax.
  • Eliminate the AMT
  • Eliminate tax free medical benefits but provide every worker a $ 7,000 tax credit for health insurance paid. Families and children more
  • Match the start of medicare to the normal social security retirement age.
  • Phase in an older start for medicare and social security (say to 67)
  • Make medicare like an HSA
  • Simplify the code! And freeze it for 5 years before changing it


  1. As a non-taxpayer at the federal level (except for FICA and such), my family thanks yours for the subsidy! :^)

    Seriously, my personal dream is the repeal of the 16th Amendment and going back to tariffs, excises, duties, and imposts. Barring that, I'd be very happy with a light import duty (say 10%) that would fund the Navy/Coast Guard/ports and a corresponding drop in income taxes.

    I'll be expecting it right when I see pigs flying. :^)

  2. Personally, I'd be fine with phasing out social security.


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