More than 1,400 millionaires paid no U.S. income taxes in 2009, according to the IRS

Discussion in 'Politics' started by merrill, Jan 14, 2012.

  1. merrill
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    merrill VIP Member

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    The top 400 earners in the U.S. paid an average tax rate of 18 percent, according to a Bloomberg TV report noticed by Think Progress. And though that's a far lower rate than the 26.5 percent that many families making less than $100,000 pay annually in taxes, some of America's super-rich have been able to whittle their tax bill down even more, paying a tax rate as low as one percent, according to Bloomberg.

    How? Many of the super rich take advantage of a variety of tax loopholes to lower their tax burden. For some of America's rich, most of their wealth comes from stock appreciation, according to Bloomberg, which some billionaires don't end up defining as taxable income.

    These findings echo earlier reports, which suggest that the super rich may not be paying their full share in taxes. More than 1,400 millionaires paid no U.S. income taxes in 2009, according to an August report from the Internal Revenue Service.

    In addition, 25 percent of all millionaires pay a smaller percentage of their income taxes than millions of middle class households.

    But billionaires aren't the only ones that use loopholes to pay lower taxes. Thirty of America's most profitable corporations used rules like the "active financing exception" -- allowing corporations to sidestep paying taxes on overseas profits if they were derived by "actively financing" some activity or deal -- to pay less than zero in income taxes, according to a recent report from the Center for Tax Justice.

    Though many super wealthy Americans and very rich corporations use loopholes to lower their tax burden, some have advocated for raising taxes on themselves. Warren Buffett became the most prominent advocate for raising taxes on the rich when he wrote an op-ed in The New York Times in August encouraging lawmakers to raise taxes on millionaires so that they pay the same or higher rate as middle class earners.

    Earlier this week, a band of millionaires went to Capitol Hill to lobby Congress to raise their taxes. And they seem to have the support of millionaires around the country, nearly 70 percent of whom said in a survey last month that they support raising taxes on those making $1 million or more.


    Some Billionaires Paying Less Than One Percent In Taxes [WATCH]
     
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  2. daveman
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    daveman Diamond Member

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    What law is keeping those millionaires from voluntarily sending more of their own money to the government?
     
  3. eflatminor
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    eflatminor Classical Liberal

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    So you're for a flat income tax? Excellent. No loopholes, everyone pays the same percentage. Otherwise, you're just bitching about people following the tax code.

    And by the way, the 18% paid by the top earners was due to the fact they tend to make their money off capital gains....money that is invested and may be lost entirely (not the case with regular wage-earned income) and that was already taxed when it was originally earned (also not the case with regular income). It's double taxation.

    Of course, the wealthy still pay the vast majority of the taxes, but don't let that stop your little class war.
     
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  4. The Infidel
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    The Infidel EVIL CONSERVATIVE

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  5. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    What did they pay in capital gains taxes

    Your attempt at an inflammatory headline fails miserably.
     
  6. alan1
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    alan1 USMB Mod Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Just because somebody is wealthy (a millionaire) doesn't mean they have income.
    Income is taxed, not wealth.

    Let me give you an example.
    Suppose I have a job that pays me $30,000 a year. Suppose I own 100,000 shares of stock in company X and I bought those shares for 1 penny each. Then suppose the stock price increases to $100 per share. I am now considered wealthy, but until I sell those shares of stock I haven't made any money on them, thus I am not taxed on that increase in wealth. I am still only taxed on my $30k income from my job despite my billionaire status of wealth.
     
  7. Soggy in NOLA
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    Soggy in NOLA Platinum Member

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    So what?
     
  8. DontBeStupid
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    DontBeStupid Look it up!

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    You won't be able to convince any "conservatives" here of needed changes to the tax code. "Conservatives" incorrectly believe that taxes on capital gains are double taxation, that that money was earned first and they refuse to acknowledge capital loss.

    They simply don't understand what's going on.
     
  9. Skull Pilot
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    Skull Pilot Platinum Member

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    I'm all for changing the tax code to allow everyone to keep more of their own money.
     
  10. alan1
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    alan1 USMB Mod Staff Member Supporting Member

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    You are mistaken.
    This conservative thinks the tax code needs a complete overhaul and rewrite.
    Far too many pay zero federal taxes and that needs to change.
    We don't let the majority of whites decide that the black or Hispanic minority should be taxed at a higher rate, we don't let the majority of heterosexuals decide that the minority of homosexuals should be taxed at a different rate, so why do we let the majority of lower income people decide that the upper income should be taxed at a different rate?

    Edit to add---
    Silly me, I think everybody should be treated the same.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2012

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