Thursday, July 12, 2018
Following up on yesterday's post, Tax Cuts Under Bush, Obama & Trump Have Increased Ineqality: New York Times op-ed: $111 Billion in Tax Cuts for the Top 1 Percent, by David Leonhardt:
More inequality? Yes, please. Federal tax policy in the 21st century has been like a tug of war. Thanks to President Trump, the rich are winning it once again.
The top-earning 1 percent of households — those earning more than $607,000 a year — will pay a combined $111 billion less this year in federal taxes than they would have if the laws had remained unchanged since 2000. That’s an enormous windfall. It’s more, in total dollars, than the tax cut received over the same period by the entire bottom 60 percent of earners, according to an analysis being published today.
Think of it this way: Income inequality has soared in recent decades, with the wealthy pulling away from everyone else and the upper-middle-class doing better than the working class or poor. Yet our federal government has responded by aggravating these trends. It has handed huge tax cuts to the small segment of Americans who need those tax cuts the least. ...
Despite the depressing overall picture, I found one part of the report to be encouraging: It shows that raising taxes on the rich — to combat the extreme current level of inequality — really is possible. President Barack Obama did so in his second term, reversing most of George W. Bush’s tax cuts on the top 1 percent. But then Trump won the White House, the Republicans kept control of Congress and they went even further in cutting high-end taxes than Bush had.
Elections have consequences. And on taxes, as on so many other subjects, our two political parties have fundamentally different positions.
Vox, America’s Getting $10 Trillion in Tax Cuts, and 20% of Them Are Going to the Richest 1%