Thursday, April 24, 2014

We Can't Have Nice Things Until We Tax the Rich

Because we sure as fuck ain't doin' it now.

David Atkins at Hullabaloo:

The United States has the third lowest effective tax rate in the developed world:

The U.S. was the third least taxed country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 2011, the most recent year for which OECD has complete data.

Of all the OECD countries, which are essentially the countries the U.S. trades with and competes with, only Chile and Mexico collect less taxes as a percentage of their overall economy (as a percentage of gross domestic product, or GDP).

This sharply contradicts the widely held view among many members of Congress that taxes are already high enough in the U.S. and that any efforts to reduce the federal deficit should therefore take the form of cuts in government spending.

As the graph to the right illustrates, in 2011, the total (federal, state and local) tax revenue collected in the U.S. was equal to 24.0 percent of the U.S.’s GDP.

The total taxes collected by other OECD countries that year was equal to 34.0 percent of combined GDP of those countries.
Remember also that the top 1% of Americans have over 50% over the wealth, and that the top 10% have over 90% of the wealth.

America isn't broke. We could pay for decent infrastructure, schools and healthcare. But we have a system of legalized political bribery that would shame banana republics, ensuring that the very wealthy don't have to contribute more than a pittance toward the general welfare.

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