Wealthiest 10% of Americans are the Most Taxed in the OECD

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    Mar 21, 2011 7:48 PM GMT
    The top 10% of Americans pay more as a share of overall revenues than the other 44 OECD nations - in most cases significantly more despite only having marginally more of national income.

    http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/27134.html

    During my recent testimony before the Senate Budget Committee (found here), I cited an OECD statistic that the U.S. has the most progressive income tax system among industrialized nations.[1] This prompted one Senator to point out that if the richest 10% of taxpayers earn the most of any OECD country, shouldn't it make sense that they bear the largest tax burden of any country?

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    Mar 21, 2011 8:57 PM GMT
    Just for background information do a little googling and find out who the players are in this piece (and its host "The Tax Foundation").. I find it MORE than biased.

    Just a hint:

    Ongoing Directors:
    Wayne E. Gable pre-1999-current Koch Industries Dir. of Federal Affairs, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Americans for Prosperity
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:03 PM GMT
    TropicalMark saidJust for background information do a little googling and find out who the players are in this piece (and its host "The Tax Foundation").. I find it MORE than biased.

    Just a hint:

    Ongoing Directors:
    Wayne E. Gable pre-1999-current Koch Industries Dir. of Federal Affairs, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Americans for Prosperity


    That's true and unsurprising. But curious - do you find fault with the research?
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:05 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidJust for background information do a little googling and find out who the players are in this piece (and its host "The Tax Foundation").. I find it MORE than biased.

    Just a hint:

    Ongoing Directors:
    Wayne E. Gable pre-1999-current Koch Industries Dir. of Federal Affairs, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Americans for Prosperity


    That's true and unsurprising. But curious - do you find fault with the research?
    I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:07 PM GMT
    TropicalMark said
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidJust for background information do a little googling and find out who the players are in this piece (and its host "The Tax Foundation").. I find it MORE than biased.

    Just a hint:

    Ongoing Directors:
    Wayne E. Gable pre-1999-current Koch Industries Dir. of Federal Affairs, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Americans for Prosperity


    That's true and unsurprising. But curious - do you find fault with the research?
    I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure.


    But he's presented the data and provided original sourcing. Do you find fault with the numbers/calculations or the fomulae he used? And if so, why?
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:13 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark said
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidJust for background information do a little googling and find out who the players are in this piece (and its host "The Tax Foundation").. I find it MORE than biased.

    Just a hint:

    Ongoing Directors:
    Wayne E. Gable pre-1999-current Koch Industries Dir. of Federal Affairs, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Americans for Prosperity


    That's true and unsurprising. But curious - do you find fault with the research?
    I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure.


    But he's presented the data and provided original sourcing. Do you find fault with the numbers/calculations or the fomulae he used? And if so, why?
    Based on nothing but pure numbers I dont doubt the numbers. However, without the variables inserted, the bias skews off the charts.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:25 PM GMT
    TropicalMark saidBased on nothing but pure numbers I dont doubt the numbers. However, without the variables inserted, the bias skews off the charts.


    How so? I mean it should be a factual statements based on the numbers - ie what percentage of overall taxes do the highest earning 10% of Americans pay (and then for overall GDP)? Ditto for other OECD countries.

    It's not clear based on this data whether or not it includes payroll taxes like social security, but I mean in the very least you would probably accept his numbers on their face of overall % of GDP?
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:25 PM GMT
    What's this obsession with the Koch brothers, as though they were the richest men in the world stealing from society?

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    Mar 21, 2011 9:31 PM GMT
    Though as point of fact, it's not a secret that the wealthy in the US pay most of overall revenues by a large margin, what I think this study adds is how the US compares to the rest of the world.

    By way of reference:

    http://www.businessinsider.com/chart-of-the-day-actually-wealthy-americans-pay-a-larger-share-of-federal-taxes-than-ever-before-2010-4
    chart-of-the-day-paying-taxes-by-quintil

    Also here - referencing a WSJ article from Cato (a libertarian think tank where the Koch brothers are also large supporters):

    http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2010/12/increasing-.html

    [T]he left wing of the Democratic Party remains passionate about making the U.S. tax system more and more progressive. ... Arguments for these retaliatory tax penalties invariably begin with estimates by economists Thomas Piketty of the Paris School of Economics and Emmanuel Saez of U.C. Berkeley that the wealthiest 1% of U.S. households now take home more than 20% of all household income. This estimate suffers two obvious and fatal flaws.

    The first is that the "more than 20%" figure does not refer to "take home" income at all. It refers to income before taxes (including capital gains) as a share of income before transfers. Such figures tell us nothing about whether the top percentile pays too much or too little in income taxes. In The Journal of Economic Perspectives (Winter 2007), Messrs. Piketty and Saez estimated that "the upper 1% of the income distribution earned 19.6% of total income before tax [in 2004], and paid 41% of the individual federal income tax." No other major country is so dependent on so few taxpayers. A 2008 study of 24 leading economies by the OECD concludes that, "Taxation is most progressively distributed in the United States, probably reflecting the greater role played there by refundable tax credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit. . . . Taxes tend to be least progressive in the Nordic countries (notably, Sweden), France and Switzerland."

    A second fatal flaw is that the large share of income reported by the upper 1% is largely a consequence of lower tax rates. In a 2010 paper on top incomes co-authored with Anthony Atkinson of Nuffield College, Messrs. Piketty and Saez note that "higher top marginal tax rates can reduce top reported earnings." They say "all studies" agree that higher "top marginal tax rates do seem to negatively affect top income shares." What appears to be an increase in top incomes reported on individual tax returns is often just a predictable taxpayer reaction to lower tax rates. That should be readily apparent from the nearby table, which uses data from Messrs. Piketty and Saez to break down the real incomes of the top 1% by source: ...
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:38 PM GMT
    mocktwinkie saidWhat's this obsession with the Koch brothers, as though they were the richest men in the world stealing from society?



    Well, they're not the richest but they are stealing from society. In fact, their entire business is based on plundering the natural resources of our country. And, they don't want to pay taxes or their employees.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:40 PM GMT
    riddler78 saidThough as point of fact, it's not a secret that the wealthy in the US pay most of overall revenues by a large margin, what I think this study adds is how the US compares to the rest of the world.


    But this is not occurring a vacuum. In fact, the chart provided dovetails nicely with the fact that low- and middle-income wages have stagnated over the same period. So adjusted for inflation, the working and middle class have less income to tax and the top few percent have seen their income soar over the past 30 years.

    If the income distribution in this country was less unequal, the tax revenues would be as well.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:41 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidBased on nothing but pure numbers I dont doubt the numbers. However, without the variables inserted, the bias skews off the charts.


    How so? I mean it should be a factual statements based on the numbers - ie what percentage of overall taxes do the highest earning 10% of Americans pay (and then for overall GDP)? Ditto for other OECD countries.

    It's not clear based on this data whether or not it includes payroll taxes like social security, but I mean in the very least you would probably accept his numbers on their face of overall % of GDP?

    Amused at your attempt to get any kind of specifics behind the criticism. It is very seldom, and with some here impossible, to get specific criticism of some analyses. All they can do is criticize the researchers, or websites reporting, and absolutely nothing more. They cannot criticise the specific analysis. Speaks for itself.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:46 PM GMT
    socalfitness said
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidBased on nothing but pure numbers I dont doubt the numbers. However, without the variables inserted, the bias skews off the charts.


    How so? I mean it should be a factual statements based on the numbers - ie what percentage of overall taxes do the highest earning 10% of Americans pay (and then for overall GDP)? Ditto for other OECD countries.

    It's not clear based on this data whether or not it includes payroll taxes like social security, but I mean in the very least you would probably accept his numbers on their face of overall % of GDP?

    Amused at your attempt to get any kind of specifics behind the criticism. It is very seldom, and with some here impossible, to get specific criticism of some analyses. All they can do is criticize the researchers, or websites reporting, and absolutely nothing more. They cannot criticise the specific analysis. Speaks for itself.


    Actually, given that TropicalMark is to my knowledge not an account or economist, riddler's attempts to suck him and others into his theoretical word games, is a transparent attempt to end the conservation by asking for an analysis beyond what most RJers would be capable.

    That said, Cato and Tax Foundation are well-established in their ideological bent and, therefore, all "studies" by them are suspect.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:50 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 saidThough as point of fact, it's not a secret that the wealthy in the US pay most of overall revenues by a large margin, what I think this study adds is how the US compares to the rest of the world.


    But this is not occurring a vacuum. In fact, the chart provided dovetails nicely with the fact that low- and middle-income wages have stagnated over the same period. So adjusted for inflation, the working and middle class have less income to tax and the top few percent have seen their income soar over the past 30 years.

    If the income distribution in this country was less unequal, the tax revenues would be as well.


    The interesting thing is that at least insofar as the top 10% are concerned the skew isn't as bad as I would have thought. Like Italy has an even more unequal distribution and the US is within 5% of most of the other countries as far as income distribution goes for that top 10% (I'm assuming that a different picture might emerge if we zoomed out a bit and looked at top 25% or 50% but I have no idea).

    I also assume you mean incomes are less on a relative basis to the rich, rather than in absolute terms?
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:53 PM GMT
    Christian73 saidActually, given that TropicalMark is to my knowledge not an account or economist, riddler's attempts to suck him and others into his theoretical word games, is a transparent attempt to end the conservation by asking for an analysis beyond what most RJers would be capable.

    That said, Cato and Tax Foundation are well-established in their ideological bent and, therefore, all "studies" by them are suspect.


    Hmmm I take exception to that. There's no word game here. I think the data does speak for itself in this case. I can accept and also acknowledge that there is a specific ideological leaning of the Tax Foundation but also Cato as there are with practically any think tank - and that's why they're judged on the scholarship of their work that are also referenced in academic journals. In fact their reputations are contingent on whether or not their studies are credible despite their leanings. Take these studies for instance, I mean it's just numbers pulled from CBO, Commerce and the White House.
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    Mar 21, 2011 9:58 PM GMT
    Christian73 said... Actually, given that TropicalMark is to my knowledge not an account or economist, riddler's attempts to suck him and others into his theoretical word games, is a transparent attempt to end the conservation by asking for an analysis beyond what most RJers would be capable. ...

    I don't see it as sucking anyone into theoretical word games. If someone chooses to make a definitive statement, riddler is simply asking him to back up his statements. If it turns out he does not have the background to do that, he should have not made such a statement in the first place. What some folks do if they want to refute a statement but don't have the facts or capability to do so is to point to a study or some other source by qualified people, and let their results make the point. But that takes work digging up sources, and sometimes sources cannot be found. So if someone wants to just be lazy and make absolute statements they have no hope of being able to back, it's fair that they are called out on it.
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    Mar 21, 2011 10:17 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    socalfitness said If it turns out he does not have the background to do that, he should have not made such a statement in the first place.


    But he is a complusive poster on here... and a compulsive hater of several RJ members, always looking to pick a fight with them.

    And the liberal hens just gawk without even a squawk of protest.




    SB - You should not be criticizing anyone for "compulsive posting."

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    Mar 21, 2011 10:20 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidActually, given that TropicalMark is to my knowledge not an account or economist, riddler's attempts to suck him and others into his theoretical word games, is a transparent attempt to end the conservation by asking for an analysis beyond what most RJers would be capable.

    That said, Cato and Tax Foundation are well-established in their ideological bent and, therefore, all "studies" by them are suspect.


    Hmmm I take exception to that. There's no word game here. I think the data does speak for itself in this case. I can accept and also acknowledge that there is a specific ideological leaning of the Tax Foundation but also Cato as there are with practically any think tank - and that's why they're judged on the scholarship of their work that are also referenced in academic journals. In fact their reputations are contingent on whether or not their studies are credible despite their leanings. Take these studies for instance, I mean it's just numbers pulled from CBO, Commerce and the White House.


    Fine. You're excepted. icon_lol.gif

    It's one thing to have an ideological bent, something nearly impossible to avoid, but they both are fiercely partisan.

    In terms of data, it's unlikely that anyone on here is going to dig into the source data with the ferocity and time it would take to dispute a research paper, no matter how biased the source.

    But, there's also the famous saying about "lies, damned lies and statistics", which I'm confident fits most of Cato's "research."
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    Mar 22, 2011 2:00 AM GMT
    Christian73 said
    riddler78 said
    Christian73 saidActually, given that TropicalMark is to my knowledge not an account or economist, riddler's attempts to suck him and others into his theoretical word games, is a transparent attempt to end the conservation by asking for an analysis beyond what most RJers would be capable.

    That said, Cato and Tax Foundation are well-established in their ideological bent and, therefore, all "studies" by them are suspect.


    Hmmm I take exception to that. There's no word game here. I think the data does speak for itself in this case. I can accept and also acknowledge that there is a specific ideological leaning of the Tax Foundation but also Cato as there are with practically any think tank - and that's why they're judged on the scholarship of their work that are also referenced in academic journals. In fact their reputations are contingent on whether or not their studies are credible despite their leanings. Take these studies for instance, I mean it's just numbers pulled from CBO, Commerce and the White House.


    Fine. You're excepted. icon_lol.gif

    It's one thing to have an ideological bent, something nearly impossible to avoid, but they both are fiercely partisan.

    In terms of data, it's unlikely that anyone on here is going to dig into the source data with the ferocity and time it would take to dispute a research paper, no matter how biased the source.

    But, there's also the famous saying about "lies, damned lies and statistics", which I'm confident fits most of Cato's "research."


    Given that both Cato and the Tax Foundation are cited in peer reviewed academic reports and also publish their reports with data online, I'd at least take the time in looking at some of their findings. Again, I mean the data here seems pretty straight forward. Do you disagree with their findings? If so, what do you have alternative data?
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    Mar 22, 2011 2:10 AM GMT
    Gee......... I think I said, quote:
    "I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure."

    What part about BIAS didnt you get.. at the least you ADMITTED it.
    I've done what I intended to do. Get you to ADMIT the BIAS and the "SLANT"
    Which makes it SUSPECT..

    G'day! icon_wink.gif
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    Mar 22, 2011 2:30 AM GMT
    TropicalMark saidGee......... I think I said, quote:
    "I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure."

    What part about BIAS didnt you get.. at the least you ADMITTED it.
    I've done what I intended to do. Get you to ADMIT the BIAS and the "SLANT"
    Which makes it SUSPECT..

    G'day! icon_wink.gif


    That's fine - just as all other other think tanks and possibly more so like EPI which makes up some of their data with ludicrous assumptions. In this case, there are no assumptions beyond the basic assumption that the sources of data are correct.

    Are you saying you disagree with the conclusions? Do they seem unreasonable?
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    Mar 22, 2011 3:08 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidGee......... I think I said, quote:
    "I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure."

    What part about BIAS didnt you get.. at the least you ADMITTED it.
    I've done what I intended to do. Get you to ADMIT the BIAS and the "SLANT"
    Which makes it SUSPECT..

    G'day! icon_wink.gif


    That's fine - just as all other other think tanks and possibly more so like EPI which makes up some of their data with ludicrous assumptions. In this case, there are no assumptions beyond the basic assumption that the sources of data are correct.

    Are you saying you disagree with the conclusions? Do they seem unreasonable?


    Yes, he is saying he disagrees because YOU are the person who posted it. icon_wink.gif
    Is that whats quoted? or is that some bullshit retort you've come up with.. either way.. the black and white print on the screen proves you be a liar..icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Mar 22, 2011 3:26 AM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    TropicalMark said
    southbeach1500 said
    riddler78 said
    TropicalMark saidGee......... I think I said, quote:
    "I find fault with the 'conclusional opinion' both based in its bias and lack of full disclosure."

    What part about BIAS didnt you get.. at the least you ADMITTED it.
    I've done what I intended to do. Get you to ADMIT the BIAS and the "SLANT"
    Which makes it SUSPECT..

    G'day! icon_wink.gif


    That's fine - just as all other other think tanks and possibly more so like EPI which makes up some of their data with ludicrous assumptions. In this case, there are no assumptions beyond the basic assumption that the sources of data are correct.

    Are you saying you disagree with the conclusions? Do they seem unreasonable?


    Yes, he is saying he disagrees because YOU are the person who posted it. icon_wink.gif
    Is that whats quoted? or is that some bullshit retort you've come up with.. either way.. the black and white print on the screen proves you be a liar..icon_rolleyes.gif



    Sheesh, quit stalking me - it's pathetic!
    You're not important enough to waste time 'stalking'.. what a whiney paranoid bitch.