The very wealthy Warren Buffet to Congress: Raise my taxes. Please.

Read Billionaire Warren Buffet’s op-ed in Monday’s New York Times, “Stop Coddling the Super-Rich.” Money quote (no pun intended):

OUR leaders have asked for “shared sacrifice.” But when they did the asking, they spared me. I checked with my mega-rich friends to learn what pain they were expecting. They, too, were left untouched.

While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks. Some of us are investment managers who earn billions from our daily labors but are allowed to classify our income as “carried interest,” thereby getting a bargain 15 percent tax rate. Others own stock index futures for 10 minutes and have 60 percent of their gain taxed at 15 percent, as if they’d been long-term investors.

These and other blessings are showered upon us by legislators in Washington who feel compelled to protect us, much as if we were spotted owls or some other endangered species. It’s nice to have friends in high places.

Last year my federal tax bill — the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf — was $6,938,744. That sounds like a lot of money. But what I paid was only 17.4 percent of my taxable income — and that’s actually a lower percentage than was paid by any of the other 20 people in our office. Their tax burdens ranged from 33 percent to 41 percent and averaged 36 percent.

If you make money with money, as some of my super-rich friends do, your percentage may be a bit lower than mine. But if you earn money from a job, your percentage will surely exceed mine — most likely by a lot.

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About Guy N. Texas

Guy N. Texas is the pen name of a lawyer living in Dallas, who is now a liberal. He was once conservative, but this word has so morphed in meaning that he can no longer call himself that in good conscience. Guy has no political aspirations. He speaks only for himself.
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2 Responses to The very wealthy Warren Buffet to Congress: Raise my taxes. Please.

  1. LR says:

    A worthy sentiment by Mr. Buffett. It needs to be noted, however, that (at least in this piece) he is not arguing for increased tax rates but rather for closure of selected tax loopholes. That is an entirely different position from arguing that tax rates on the wealthy should be increased to make the tax code that much more progressive.

    Another Guy N Texas

  2. Guy N. Texas says:

    True. Not hard to find that though.See, for example: http://blog.buzzflash.com/contributors/1410

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