Just looking at the US tax rates… you’d be shocked at how high taxes are in the “home of the free”.
You hear politicians say that we don’t tax enough or that people are getting away with not paying taxes, but that’s because we have exorbitant tax rates for all and the federal government grants giant tax breaks to their “friends” (also known as campaign donors).
Let’s say you lived in California (That’s me!) and worked for a corporation and you made over one million dollars, by the time a dollar of income went through a corporation, to the employee and was used to buy a good, that $1 would now be worth $0.329423. That means that over $0.67 is taken out of each dollar as a tax.
That’s ridiculous. Over 66% of all income generated by private industry ends up in the pockets of the government (at different levels).
I don’t know why I still live here or why anyone would conduct business here. The only thing I can think of is how great the natural landscape is and that I was born here so I have human bonds that are hard to break. Other than that, I should be packing up and moving.
My favorite nonsensical government idea is carbon taxes. First the vilify industry, then they outlaw it and then they tax it and the last step is to allow companies to pollute by paying for and even buying additional tax credits. In the end, you haven’t ended pollution, you’ve simply profited from it. But that’s what government does best, profit from the misfortune of the people.
One can extrapolate and argue that if any law without consent is not slavery, then any band of authoritarians need only to declare themselves a government and all their coercion is legalized.
How much taxation is too much?
I got asked a question on another forum and I decided to post the answer here:
The first post you make in this thread must be a percentage.
Say money isn’t an issue. And how I make it (income, stocks, gambling, whatever is legal), is irrelevant.
At what point do you think the government is taking too much? I specifically ask anyone who supports raising taxes currently. When will you say, “No, enough is enough, taxes are high enough we need to cut spending.”
The question is asked for our current system. We’ve all heard that Obama’s tax increase would fund, 8-12 days of Gov’t spending (lets not argue this number, but agree that his tax increase/letting the holiday expire does NOT solve the deficit problem). Which means the top bracket would be at 39.6%. Well we still have ~350 days of the year to make up for. Would his supporters be ok with 50%? 60%? 80%?
At what point do you say, enough is enough?
Federal Income Tax (and overall budget):
As far as federal income tax goes, all of it is too much. Federal taxes are completely wasted, mismanaged and blown on entitlements, war and interest payments. None of it actually does a thing for me, you or anyone else that is actually beneficial.
Based on 1965 level spending (war, the moon, domestic and foreign spending) adjusted for inflation and population growth, the federal gov’t should be spending ~1.5 trillion a year. We spend ~3.5 trillion a year.
47% of the gov’t’s income comes from income taxes (5% pay 40% of all income taxes), 36% from payroll taxes (EVERYONE with a legal job pays payroll tax), 8% comes from Corp Tax, 9% from Estate tax and we borrow another ~1 trillion a year or 30% of our annual budget.
I’ve looked into this a lot and I’d say that if you fixed all the loopholes, cut all subsidies, removed tax credits and bailouts and handouts and aid and foreign aid and all of the wars we fight for profits and corporate interests, we’d be able to sustain a federal gov’t without charging anyone a single cent of income tax or corp tax.
Here’s how: We spend over a trillion dollars a year on war. The military budget is ~700 billion and there’s another 300 to 400 billion hidden in the energy, communications, infrastructure, NASA and “black” budgets. We spend 50% of the world’s military budget. We spend more than almost everyone combined. Cut this down to 10%. Too much, fine. Cut this to 20%. You just saved 800 billion dollars. Congrats, you just eliminated the need for half of the income tax we bring in and that figure of $200 to 400 billion a year still puts us miles ahead of every other country.
With the elimination of these wars and ridiculous spending, you can save the money you borrowed and the interest that comes with it. We pay about ~$360 billion a year in interest. I also have this radical theory that we simply don’t pay the majority of our debt. We owe people and people owe us, no one ever really completely pays these debts. A lot of that debt is held by foreign nations and scummy banks. Fuck’em. ~4 to 6 trillion is held by the Federal Reserve. (This will come into play later).
Add $50 billion more saved by cutting foreign aid. Also throw in $25 billion a year we spend on maintaining unoccupied federal buildings. Sell them. I won’t even count their sale as income since it’s non-recurring.
We are at about $1.25 trillion dollars saved. That’s 36% of our annual budget or 120% of our budget deficit. Congrats, no more deficit, no more need to borrow, no more interest accumulated.
Now, cut subsidies and tax exemptions and tax credits (did you know oil companies have a positive tax INCOME!!!). There’s at least $100 to $200 billion dollars here if not more. Not only will we have to tax people less to give that money to these corporations, but a lot of these corps will start paying money in. We’d probably see corp taxes increase by a lot, probably by 25%. According to the CAP, there’s over a trillion dollars a year in discounts. I don’t even want to collect all of that. Heck, I think just Apple and big oil alone hide over a $100 billion a year in taxes combined. I’m guessing that Corp tax income will increase from about ~$300 billion to $450-500 billion, all without touching the rate. I’ll calculate this increase later.
Cut the Dept of Education. It’s a completely useless piece of shit. Let the states and local cities take over their school systems once again. That’s another $100 billion saved.
Eliminate the Federal Reserve and let Congress regulate it’s own money supply and let the market dictate interest rates. We pay the Fed around $400 billion a year for no reason at all.
Sub Total: We are at ~$2 trillion dollars saved thus far. That’s 52% of our annual budget. This means that I’ve eliminated our entire deficit, we’ve eliminated a need for any federal income taxes and we’ve also eliminated a good portion of payroll taxes (about 6% cut).
We’d now be at a Federal Budget of 1.8 trillion dollars.
If we can cut 20% more off of our spending from every department, we will also eliminate the need for payroll taxes (the other 10% needed to eliminate all of payroll taxes will come from the increase in corp tax revenues I spoke about earlier).
Congrats, we’ve now reached a point where we pay ZERO federal income tax. Corporate Tax rates didn’t change. Estate Taxes didn’t change. We still have the highest military spending in the world. I didn’t kill off NASA. I didn’t kill Big Bird or PBS and I haven’t even dug into all of our entitlement spending.
Can we go further? Of course we can.
We have about $1.5 trillion dollars a year in entitlements medicare and social security. This is the full remainder of the budget. I’m sure that we can wiggle our way down to $1 trillion dollars very quickly. But for the sake of not giving the hardcore lefties a massive heart attack, let’s just cut half of that. We just saved $250 billion more dollars.
We’ve cut out Federal Budget all the way down to 1.5 trillion dollars a year, and there’s is still a lot of room to work with. We’ve eliminated income tax, we’ve eliminated the deficit, we’ve eliminated borrowing at a federal level and we’ve cut into the payroll tax (giving the middle class a break), and also cut out loopholes for billionaires and billion dollar companies.
And we can STILL cut more. We can actually cut the majority of the remaining budget by eliminating general federal taxes and implementing use taxes. This will cut down on the “tax the masses for the good of the few” and it will also cut down the amount of money government has to waste. It might even make people aware of how much things cost and how much is wasted.
And I know that all of this is 100% possible because we had zero Federal Income tax before 1913 and the country grew leaps and bounds with very little debt (we even had periods of zero national debt). We also had very little state income tax before 1913 and we grew just fine back then, also.
That takes care of Federal Income Taxes as well as some other Federal personal taxes.
State & Local Taxes:
Local, again, 0%. A lot of states have zero income tax and they survive just fine without it thanks to a lot of direct or use taxation. Taxes come from use tax (which isn’t as much of a tax as it is a rental fee), corp tax, and other non-personal income taxes.
I personally don’t believe in any taxation and I support the theory of Voluntaryism, that private markets and private individuals can produce whatever goods and services they need without coercion. But for the sake of this exercise let’s pretend Government exists… overall, you can see that it is very possible to eliminate all personal income taxes in this country and that’s why I’m sticking to 0% taxation.