Monday, April 15, 2019

Vox explains tax reform for Tax Day plus taxes and economics for the eighth year of Crazy Eddie's Motie News

"Happy" Tax Day!  Instead of writing about Tax Marches today, which I might do tomorrow, I am following up on Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Vox explain how tax brackets work with more videos from Vox about taxes.

I begin with The 70% top tax rate, explained with potatoes.

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called for a 70 percent top tax rate on the super rich.
While it might seem like a radical idea, it's actually based on an economic theory that tries to make everyone as well-off as possible.

How can we make all citizens as well-off as possible? That's the simple question behind something call "optimal tax theory." It starts from this idea that, to a rich person, one dollar is worth almost nothing. Take away the dollar and he'll be just as well off as he was before. But that dollar is worth a lot to poor people. So, if the government wants to optimize the well-being of its citizens, it should tax that money from the rich and give it to the poor. But at a certain point, we can't keep taxing the rich more. To find out why, watch this video.
That's a good explanation of why 70%.  Personally, I'd settle for 50% as the top tax rate.

Next, A better way to tax the rich.

American wealth inequality is staggering. A wealth tax, which would hone in on the money people actually have, rather than just the money we earn and spend, could be a solution.
An astounding amount of American wealth lies with very few ultrarich people. But it isn’t taxed by the federal government. That's because most of the taxes we pay only happen when money changes hands — when we earn it or spend it.

This is what a recent proposal from Senator Elizabeth Warren tries to fix. Her plan is to tax fortunes greater than $50 million at 2 percent each year, and wealth greater than $1 billion at 3 percent. When you add it all up, those tiny slivers of massive fortunes would raise enough revenue to pay for huge programs for everyone else.
My opinion of a wealth tax is that it is a good idea that might be unconstitutional.  This is why I voted against term limits in Michigan in 1992.  I thought it was a good idea at the time (I have since changed my mind) but the provision for U.S. Representatives and Senators was blatantly unconstitutional.  I wouldn't vote for a ballot measure that would cause the state to spend money in a losing effort to defend it, which is what ended up happening.  Therefore, I'm not supporting a wealth tax without a constitutional amendment.  Better to lower threshold for the estate tax to reduce intergenerational transfer of wealth and its subsequent concentration.

Finally, Why Republicans failed to fit taxes onto a postcard.

For years, Republicans have proposed making the tax code so simple that Americans could file their taxes on a single postcard.
So when they got the chance to reform taxes in 2017, they made sure to design and implement a postcard-sized tax return.

In reality, the postcard isn’t what they say it is. While it’s half the size of the old form, the new form is more condensed than simplified. Important deductions and tax credits, still exist, but they’ve been moved onto other forms. In order to file taxes with the new form, you could end up attaching six or more extra pieces of paper.

Republicans didn’t really simplify the tax code, but they still tried to simplify the tax return form.
Add that to the reasons I think the 2017 tax bill was a bad idea.

This entry is part of a series of retrospectives on the most read entries of the eighth year of this blog, so follow over the jump for the stories behind the page views of the two most read posts about taxes and the economy from last year.

The ninth most read entry of the eighth year of the blog was Ten years ago, we were partying like it was 1929. Are we about to do it again? from September 15, 2018, which amassed 5990 raw page views as of March 20, 2019.  Like all the other top entries, it earned those page views from being shared at the Coffee Party USA Facebook page.  It was also the most read entry of September 2018 with 5871 default and 5882 raw page views by the end of the month.

Now for a paragraph about an entry that I wrote that I might recycle today.

The next most read entry during the eighth year of this blog that featured a video from "Last Week Tonight" was John Oliver helps update 'The tax bill and the U.S. economy in 2018 and beyond,' a top post of the seventh year of Crazy Eddie's Motie News from April 26, 2018.  It ended the blogging year in 16th place with 3645 raw page views.  This post had 91 default and 100 raw page views before being shared to the Join the Coffee Party Movement Facebook page at 9:00 P.M. on May 1, 2018.  It earned 2164 page views in the first two hours and 3101 page views in the first 24 hours after being shared.  It maxed out at 3486 default and 3545 raw page views at 7:59 P.M. on May 25, 2018, ending May 2019 with 3395 default page views, making it the fifth most read entry during May 2018.
That's it for this retrospective.  The next one will be about the Retail Apocalypse.  That should be a long one.  Stay tuned.

Previous posts in this series

No comments:

Post a Comment