Comments about ‘Letter: Tax fairness: Every citizen should pay at least 10 percent of his or her annual income’

Return to article »

Published: Sunday, Dec. 2 2012 12:00 a.m. MST

Comments
  • Oldest first
  • Newest first
  • Most recommended
Maudine
SLC, UT

Minimum wage is $7.25/hour. For an individual who works 40 hours/week, 52 weeks/year, this is $15,080 per year.

Out of this $15,080, the employee already pays $851.76 per year in Social Security and Medicare taxes - leaving them with $14,228.24 with which to pay for housing, food, clothing, and transportation to work. You want to take another $1,508 away from them every year?

That would leave them with $12,720.24 - or $1060.02 every month. Approximately $11.78 for food every day. $353 for housing. $353 for clothing, personal hygiene, electricity, transportation.

And this assumes the only person they have to care for is themselves. What about the young rape victim who kept her child? Or the person with the sick spouse? What are they supposed to do?

Oh - and if they get more than $125 in assistance every month, they are getting more out than they are paying in.

Why do so many people think it makes sense for the wealthy to keep their money but not for the poor to keep theirs?

Kalindra
Salt Lake City, Utah

Here's an idea: This is supposed to be an income tax, not a working tax. We should tax all income, regardless of source, the same.

We should start taxing investment income, which does nothing to grow the economy, at the same rates as all other income is taxed.

That makes more sense and will generate more revenue for expenses than taxing the poor. Additionally, it will improve the economy because people will actually use their money and spend it instead of sitting on it or moving it from one account to another.

Scott C
Ephraim, UT

Could not agree more. Ownership in the country. Not freeloaders!

KDave
Moab, UT

It would take more like a 75% rate to run todays Govt.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

Trouble is, everything you want to be 'agreed upon' will not be 'agreed upon'. And our societal safety net should not have a condition of religious affiliation associated with it. The foundation of the system belongs to the state; whatever over and above people can get out of churches is up to them.

Kent C. DeForrest
Provo, UT

Royce, if you can guarantee that each worker in America receives fair pay (fair being defined by the same criteria that determine a CEO's pay), then I might think you've got a decent idea here. Without that guarantee, all you've got here is another scheme to funnel more money into the hands of those who already have too much and to take money from those who have too little.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

Or...

Here's an idea, lets bring traditional America back!

What was the tax rate for top earners in the 50s? Lets bring those rates back!

mark
Salt Lake City, UT

Since we are just pulling stuff off the top of our heads how about this for federal taxes:

Up to 30 thousand a year: 0% tax
Every dollar over 30 thousand up to 50 thousand: 5 % tax
Every dollar over 50 thousand up to 1 million: 10% tax
1million to 1billion: 40%
1 billion to 10 billion: 60%
Over 10 billion: 80%

No deductions.
And the taxes are figured going upwards. In other words, take out five percent for your income (all income, from any source capital gains or otherwise. Income is income) between 30-50 thousand, then what you are left with above 50,000 take out the 10 percent up to 1 million, whatever is left above a milion take out the 40%, and so on.

Do the same thing with coporate rates, but with a much lower rate, perhaps starting at 0% and topping out at, say, 15%.

Maybe add a 1% federal VAT on everything except food, that would satisfy some people's need that everyone pays in.

Then force states to get rid of property tax on all first houses under $500,000, full 10% over 500,000. Full 15% over a million.

Eric Samuelsen
Provo, UT

Maudine,
Excellent comment! Thanks for your clarification of the economic realities this letter ignores.

Dektol
Powell, OH

A surprising biblical fact is that the poor did not pay tithes, but, instead, received from the tithe. This fact is made especially clear in the gleaning laws and in the purpose of the tithe. Jesus did not tithe, nor did he sin by failing to tithe because he was poor and did not own land or herd animals for his sustenance. The poor were only expected to give free-will offerings to the best of their ability.

FrIis easy to demonstrate that the contents of every recorded tithe found in the Mosaic Law is only from landowners and herdsmen of the land of Israel. This was a totally unexpected, yet very clear, truth about tithing that Bible study with an exhaustive concordance reveals. Also, strange as it may seem, Scriptural tithing was only intended for a society sustained almost wholly by agricultural crops and animal herds.

But, why let reality intrude into the religious fantasy of some who believe they have "truth" and think it should apply to government?

one old man
Ogden, UT

Here's a must read book for every American who cares and is interested in trying to learn more about some of our recent history.

The book is "Who Stole the American Dream," by Hedrick Smith.

It's a very well balanced and carefully researched look at the roles played by both major political parties, several Presidents on both sides, and by increasing corporate greed.

Whether one considers themself to be conservative, liberal, or in between, this book should be one we all study and consider carefully.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Why look just at federal income tax when evaluating tax fairness? State taxes are regressive, falling disproportionately on the poor, as a percentage of income, than the wealthy.

The Corporation for Enterprise Development released a scorecard for all 50 states. That includes overall tax rates, where data from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy shows that in the median state (Mississippi, as it turns out) the poorest 20 percent pay twice the tax rate of the top 1 percent. In the worst states, the poorest 20 percent pay five to six times the rate of the richest 1 percent. In UT, the tax rate for the poor is 9.3% and 4.9% for the wealthy--a 1.9 ratio. In CA it is 10.2% for the poor, 7.4% for the wealthy, 1.4 ratio.

higv
Dietrich, ID

No one is exempt from paying tithing. Taxes could work that way too. As for minimum wage no one is forced to make minimum wage all there life. Can improve. With the government taking more than there will be less incentive to earn as it is all gone and higher prices will be paid. So people who make more and pay more well there goes incentive. And were is minimum wage for business owners who only make money if enough people patronize to keep them in business.

Kalindra
Salt Lake City, Utah

@ higv: Actually, lots of people are exempt from paying tithing and everyone who does pay tithing, does so voluntarily.

one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

Automatically doubled if a war is declared.

Screwdriver
Casa Grande, AZ

Not too long ago the conservative argument was that taxes = stealing. Why do they want to steal from more people?

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

higv
Dietrich, ID
No one is exempt from paying tithing.

==========

But the BURDEN reamins hirer for those with less.

Think about the Widow's mite.
The Pahrisees paid the same "rate", but since they "owned" so much more, their offering [sacrifice] meant much less to God.

The 1% who own 80% of eveything can doubel their "burden" and not even blink.

And If you conservatives wish to make America a "Chrsitian" nation --
Why do you protect those with the most,
and shun those with the least?

That's not what Jesus taught.

Demo Dave
Holladay, UT

With a 10% flat tax, rich and poor alike would pay the same fair rate, we would all see a reduction in our taxes, and the goverment would be flush with money (no more loopholes or exemptions for the wealthy). Consumers would have more disposable income to boost the economy and the deficit would be less likely to run amok.

My grandpa had this idea 40 years ago. It's fair, it's practical, and it makes sense. That's why the government will never do it.

Mike in Cedar City
Cedar City, Utah

Hey Mark! If corporations are persons, like the Supreme Court says, why not tax them the same way as for other "persons"? Why give them a break. Many of the largest pay no income tax at all under current tax law.

Say What?
Bountiful, UT

People at or even near the poverty line should pay 10% income taxes on top of all the other taxes they pay?

Let me get this straight, we need to raise taxes on poor people, but fight like heck to ensure the 1% don't pay a dime more in taxes.

I guess if this made sense to me I would be a republican.

to comment

DeseretNews.com encourages a civil dialogue among its readers. We welcome your thoughtful comments.
About comments