September 30, 2011
President takes no notice that his rationale is built on lies
By Deroy Murdock – The Washington Times
“Middle-class families shouldn’t pay higher tax rates than millionaires and billionaires,” Mr. Obama said. “A teacher or a nurse or a construction worker making $50,000 a year shouldn’t pay higher tax rates than somebody making $50 million.”
Mr. Obama’s assault on the affluent rests upon a sky-high stack of lies. Mr. Obama is too well-staffed and too well-informed not to know otherwise. So, maddeningly, he straight-out lies to the American people.
For days before Mr. Obama opened his mouth in Denver, multiple news accounts and opinion pieces annihilated the casus belli of his War on the Wealthy. Nonetheless, Mr. Obama keeps spouting falsehoods, perhaps hoping that his smooth voice will hypnotize Americans into believing his words.
“Fact check: The wealthy already pay more taxes,” read the headline above a Sept. 20 Associated Press report. “President Obama says he wants to make sure millionaires are taxed at higher rates than their secretaries,” Stephen Ohlemacher wrote. “The data say they already are.”
In 2008, its latest data indicate, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) harvested $1.0315 trillion in income tax – of which the top 10 percent of earners paid $721.4 billion. The top 5 percent shelled out $605.7 billion, and the top 1 percent relinquished $392.15 billion. Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent collectively paid just $27.9 billion. Thus, the top 1 percent of taxpayers furnished 14 times the income taxes that the bottom half of filers supplied.
In 2009, the IRS reports, those who made at least $1 million averaged 24.4 percent of adjusted gross income in federal income taxes. Those who scored $200,000 to $300,000 paid 17.5 percent. Between $100,000 and $125,000: 9.9 percent. From $50,000 to $60,000: 6.3 percent. Those who earned between $20,000 and $30,000 saw income taxes devour 2.5 percent of adjusted gross income.
Income, schmincome, leftists chirp. What about payroll taxes that lower-income Americans pay? Counting other taxes still shows that higher earners pay more, Mr. Obama’s dark fantasies notwithstanding.
The Tax Policy Center – a joint venture of the liberal Urban Institute and the Brookings Institution – reported Aug. 24 that Americans who receive $1 million or more will average 29.1 percent of earnings in 2011 federal income, payroll, corporate and death taxes. Those clearing between $50,000 and $75,000 will pay 15 percent, while those from $40,000 to $50,000 will average 12.5 percent. Those federal taxes will extract 5.7 percent from earners between $20,000 and $30,000.
Dry? Yes. But these figures demonstrate that Americans who earn more money pay more federal tax. Those who see less pay less. If Mr. Obama finds this unfair, he should define fairness.
True, the IRS notes, 1,470 households produced at least $1 million, but paid no federal income tax in 2009. Still, this is just 0.62 percent of the 236,883 returns that millionaires filed. This reinforces the bipartisan idea of closing loopholes and lowering tax rates – but not Mr. Obama’s crusade against “millionaires and billionaires” and his American Jobs Act’s tax hikes on people earning as little as $200,000.
When Mr. Obama accepted the 2008 Democratic nomination in Denver, he espoused national unity. The United States would “come together as one American family,” he declared. The nearby Continental Divide might become this republic’s only rift if Barack Obama secured the presidency.
How disappointing that the eloquent man who millions hoped would heal this land now actively pits Americans against each other – not by race or creed, but by income. As London’s arson-scorched victims of mob rule learned last August, there is nothing cute about class war.
Deroy Murdock is a columnist with the Scripps Howard News Service and a media fellow with Stanford’s Hoover Institution.
- MILLER: Obama’s tall tax tales – Washington Times (gds44.wordpress.com)