A number of my liberal FB friends are linking to Warren Buffet’s NYTimes barf-ed, Stop Coddling The Super Rich. Apparently it’s an “instant hit on the internet“. Learjet limousine liberals like him and Hollywood elites love to demagogue the issue. They can afford to do so because they don’t have to put their money where their mouth is and be taxed on their wealth:
As I wrote then, the super rich won’t mind at all if we “tax the rich” as it’s currently defined. That’s because people who are super rich don’t really pay taxes. They pay taxes on this year’s income, and capital gains on accumulated wealth. But the only “tax” that can ever touch what they’ve already made is inflation.
That’s why a man worth $47 billion dollars can pay just $6,938,744 in federal income taxes and not be accused of a crime. In fact, he can boast about how little he pays, and ask to be charged even more.
That man is Warren Buffett. And his article in today’s NY Times, titled “Stop Coddling The Super Rich” is a huge pile of manipulative garbage.
The super rich love to talk about higher taxes on the rich because it’s a competitive barrier protecting them from competition. If the people making a lot of money today have to pay much higher taxes, they probably won’t ever accumulate enough wealth to be “super rich.”
Now if you really want to screw the rich, start talking about a wealth tax. It won’t save the economy but it’ll certainly serve to even everything out. Buffett wants a higher tax rate on himself and anyone making $1 million or more per year. If you doubled the tax rate on these people, someone making $1 million year would lose another 380,000 to the government.
Buffett calls for an increase in all types of taxes – income, dividend and capital gains. That would be a nice triple layer of protection against any newcomers, and still preserve all – 100% – of the $47 billion he’s accumulated until now.
Buffett is just fine with big new taxes on the rich because those taxes never touch all the under-taxed wealth he’s accumulated over the decades. He talks about how he’s benefited for decades by being under taxed, but is only willing to pay more in the future. That’s like a steroids-ridden baseball player declaring that steroids are bad and from now on no one gets to take them. But paying for past sins? Shhh.
I say if Buffett wants higher taxes, Buffett should get higher taxes. Take 50% of his wealth immediately. And everyone else who’s super rich. Hell, take 100% of everyone’s wealth over $1 million. That’ll even the playing field. We’ll do it again in ten years. Some sneaky people will figure out a way to cheat the system and accumulate more wealth than everyone else, but we’ll knock ‘em back down to earth again.
Think that’s crazy? In the late 90s Donald Trump proposed a one time 14.25% tax on the net worth of individuals and trusts worth $10 million or more. The goal? To pay down the national debt, and shore up Social Security.
Wealth taxes aren’t new, they’re just new here in the U.S. So the next time some super rich person stands up and says they must pay more taxes, ask them how serious they are. And then ask them how they’d feel about a wealth tax every year.
Rich people are very good at staying rich. And Warren Buffett is the smartest rich person I know. That’s why he’s able to say feel good bullshit about how he should be paying higher taxes when he has absolutely no intention of letting the government anywhere near his real money.
As for me, I think the government should be starved of income and be forced to spend money where it’s supposed to – defending the border, establishing a trusted currency, and protecting property rights. Whenever they muck around with the other stuff everyone gets poorer.
When President Obama pushes the idea of “taxing the rich” he’s actually talking about taxing those who are trying to get rich. His desired wealth increases won’t so much impact the “millionaires and billionaires” who draw his derision as it will cripple those eager strivers who hope someday to become millionaires and billionaires. The federal tax authorities don’t go after wealth but rather grab their share from income, hampering earning not luxurious living.
This explains the puzzling predisposition of progressive plutocrats who live primarily off their investments (or who won life’s lottery with inherited fortunes like the Kennedys or Rockefellers) to favor high tax rates on top earners. It’s not really noble or unselfish for those who have already earned their pile to seek to place new obstacles on hard-driving, up-and-coming challengers who seek to enter the charmed circle of privilege.
Those obstacles, however, will hardly benefit the nation as a whole. Isn’t it obvious that America needs more, not fewer, millionaires? And we want the numbers of poor and dependent people to shrink, not multiply.
While the left tries to foment indignation against wealth-creators, conservatives should respond with outrage at the moral inversion at the core of contemporary liberalism. Though progressives trumpet “fairness” as its guiding priority there’s nothing fair about society and government conferring generous dispensations on dysfunctional, dependent conduct and onerous special burdens on those who enrich both themselves and others. It is both unwise and, at the deepest level, unjust to promote hatred and resentment where gratitude is due and to offer indulgence and support for values that require correction.
If Warren Buffett, Matt Damon, and other soapbox learjet liberal bloviators want to cut Uncle Sam a bigger paycheck, what’s holding them back? Really, what is stopping them from really putting their money where their mouth is rather than constantly stuffing it with their foot?
Reality check to Buffet and other rich liberals who want to pay more in taxes: You can write a check today to the U.S. Treasury for as much as you feel is “fair.” It’s called “Gift Contributions to Reduce Debt Held by the Public.” President Obama has been calling for tax increases on the
job creators“rich” making over $250,000 per year, which is a far cry from $80 billion.