Gap widens between U.S. rich, poor as top 1 percent controls 25 percent of wealth

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  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 3, 2011 8:17 p.m.

    Voice of reason I guess what you are saying is that the poor are better off, because according to your statistics they have made an ever so slight increase over the rate of inflation, while at the same time the wealthy are up in the hundreds of percentage points over the rate of inflation is proof that this economy is working for everyone? Could we at least agree that this economy is working a whole lot better for the rich than it is for the poor.

  • LDS Aerospace Engineer Farmington, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 8:35 a.m.

    VST | 9:41 p.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Bountiful, UT
    @LDS Aerospace Engineer,

    I have no idea who you work for, but whoever it is, you are being ripped off at those rates which equate to $35K to $73K per year. Before I retired as an Engineering Manager (Aerospace), I was hiring newly graduated engineers out of college and was offering them starting salaries at about $50K per year and that was over eight years ago. $75 to $90K per year was the norm for journeyman engineers - higher for senior/lead engineers.

    Engineers are not wealthy, but they are not starving to death either.


    Times have changed my friend,
    and you are completely out of Out of touch with reality.

  • Voice of Reason Layton, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 7:43 a.m.

    cpafred - As I noted earlier, my source was directly from the latest IRS gross income data, and the latest BLS CPI data. They won't let me post weblinks here, but as a CPA I'm sure you could easily find it on your own.

    Let me say it again: incomes for the poorest among us need to be measured not against others, but against their own growth in cost of living. that's because the poor could increase their "share" of national wealth and see the rich decrease their, but still lose ground to inflation. Likewise, they could see their "share of wealth" decrease and the rich's increase, but still gain ground against inflation and improve their situation...this is what has actually been happening in recent years, especially under GOP Congresses.

    In other words, a rising tide really DOES raise all boats...just because one boat raises higher does not mean another boat has to sink, as the left keeps repeatedly saying in a transparent effort to foster class warfare.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Sept. 29, 2011 7:26 a.m.

    To UtahBlueDevil:

    Don't confuse formal education with education. Bill Gates and other highly successful people like him are HIGHLY educated. Without education in areas demanded by the marketplace, you will be poor. Guaranteed.

  • Christy Beaverton, OR
    Sept. 28, 2011 11:26 p.m.

    Gap widens between U.S. rich, poor as top 1 percent controls 25 percent of wealth

    And redshirt defends Paris Hilton.

    If this doesn't explain how severely messed up the conversation in this country has gotten, I don't know what does.

  • cpafred SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 9:34 p.m.

    Voice of reason: What is your source?

  • cpafred SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:43 p.m.

    I lived near Inglewood in LA during the "Rodney King" riots and I can tell you there's a very very fine line between civil obedience and pure chaos. A group of people felt they weren't being treated fairly (it doesn't matter whether they were or weren't, only their perception mattered). My neighbors who one day were shopping in the same stores, attending the same schools, etc. as I were the next day burning and shooting at the "haves". This scene repeats itself around the world regularly (as it recently did with French teenagers).

    I believe we are approaching that day again, and most of the people talking (and talking and talking) on this website seem totally oblivious to it, but are fueling the growing discontent. It will be interesting to see if your tunes change regarding graduated taxation once the rioting starts and your paid government officials stand helplessly by and watch your neighborhoods burn as they did in LA.

  • Thomas Alvord PROVO, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 7:02 p.m.

    We need to end the federal reserve and end debt spending. This causes printing of more fiat money and mega inflation. Inflation over the past 25 years has been 106%. With inflation the rich prosper and the poor get poorer.

    We need to move away from government welfare and have more community charity, where individuals serve and care for one another in ways that require more than the govt. redistributing wealth.

    If there is anything I see from this article it is that government welfare doesn't work. It has failed. The solution is to do something else, not up the redistribution of wealth.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 6:10 p.m.

    RE: Truthseeker

    Education already exista for those desire it and value it.

    Taxing the rich more does not effect this.

    Please try again

    Also, Companies and CEOs can do a lot things, but they on;y have a finite amount of money to work with, they MUST maintain a healthy bottom line and keep the company financially healthy and growing,

    or the company goes bottom up, and helps no one,

    they use use the company money wisely,

    over spending puts the company in jeopardy,

    Things are not simple as you want to make them.

    'Tax the rich', is marxist/ socialist/ leftest/ liberal rhetoric,

    built on unbased fears,

    that is spoken without thinking things through.

    that is spoken like child who wants his,

    but does not consider others, or the implications (of getting what he wants) for the rest of the world.

    Using the force of government is simply the wrong way to fix things.

    Destruction or confistication of another freedoms, property, and rights, is not the answer.

    If the left truly want to change things, they should be changing hearts, teaching morals and principles,

    not reaching thier fingers into anothers wallet.

  • Screwdriver Casa Grande, AZ
    Sept. 28, 2011 5:38 p.m.

    est, you haven't entered the corporate work place yet. Just wait and see how poeple that went to big ten schools get fast tracked even when thier ideas are terrible and thier plans fail. Hence the epidemic of CEO that get bonuses even when profits fall and stocks plunge.

    The most important factor of a persons future success in America is still the income level of thier parents.

    - Booth Newspapers review of tests scores and family income

  • est061985 SOUTH JORDAN, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 5:14 p.m.

    Reading all these comments makes me fear for the future of this great country. I cannot believe the blatant class-warfare on display here, and i hope it does not represent the majority. I am currently working 2 jobs while finishing up a "relevant" degree in college. I am not doing this so that someday, when i am able to make good money, half of the "fruits of my labors" will then be redistributed to those who made poor choices in life- or decided not to take the necessary risks in order to be financially secure.


    How does increasing the marginal tax rate on the wealthy strengthen the middle class?

    And why do people insist on comparing the disparity today to the disparity in the days of kings and peasants? Peasants could not work themselves out of poverty, today we can. If you were not born into royalty, you had zero chance of ever being "rich". Today, we have examples all around us of individuals born to humble circumstances, that become extremely successful. Other than "A knights Tale" you will not hear stories like that from early history.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 4:00 p.m.

    To "Baccus0902 | 3:32 p.m." let me explain it more clearly. If the wealthy that are going around saying that they should pay more in taxes (they don't send enough money to the government) are not voluntarily sending more money into the government, why should we listen to them?

    It is like the homeless guy with the sign "will work for food". The truth is he doesn't want to work, he just wants the money.

    How do we know that the wealthy won't just get other wealthy people taxed while their income remains untouched?

    You are approaching the correct question.

    Who should be the first one concerned with the well being of the starving child? Should it be their parents, or the government. Liberals would have us believe that it is the Government.

    How can you preach about Christ, and leave the care of the needy to the government? Doesn't the Gospel of Christ also teach that each of us as individuals need to take care of the poor and needy first? What does a faceless politician in Washington know about the need of the person who lives 2 houses down from me?

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    Sept. 28, 2011 3:32 p.m.

    What type of logic is that? They acknowledge they should pay more taxes. It doesn't follow they will do it of their own accord.

    There are many ways to become rich, sometimes requires to take risks, other is just to belong to the right family, or just be in the right place at the right time.

    The rich enjoys wealth and hopefully a great quality of life in all aspects, and that is wonderful for them. I hope they keep enjoying that status.

    This is not class warfare, it is simply you cannot get benefits from society without paying for them. The American rich benefits most from the infrastructure that is generated with the taxes of the majority of Americans.

    They are able to control and manage their wealth because of the education and civility of those who have less than they do.

    I don't care if the rich enjoys life, good for them. I do care however, if a child is starving and lacks the basic necessities of life because our political representatives are slaves to economic interest.

    How can you preach about Christ and neglect your brothers in need.

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2011 2:15 p.m.

    Pass the time and try to "look productive"?

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Sept. 28, 2011 1:42 p.m.

    To "no fit in SG | 10:40 a.m." and "Wastintime | 12:31 p.m. " you both missed the point. The fact is that even Paris Hilton has had to work to earn money.

    "no fit in SG" you only reinforce the fact that even the wealthy have to work to maintain their wealth. Look at Mitt Romney. He could have lived off of any inheritance given to him, but instead, he worked. If you read about how Romney earned his millions, he did it through is own work, not a trust fund.

    "Wastintime" it doesn't matter what a person's educational background is, before you mentioned it, that wasn't even an issue.

    If Gates, Soros, and Buffett really believe that they should be giving more of their income to the government, why are they not doing so? There is an office in the Treasury Department that is able to take whatever amount they feel is appropriate. You have to ask yourself this: If they believe that the government allows them to keep too much of their wealth, why are they not giving what they feel is excessive to the government?

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    Sept. 28, 2011 12:31 p.m.

    Have you ever read Paris Hilton's bio? She got kicked out of high school and even did a stint in Provo Canyon School for troubled youth. Oh, but she did later get her GED.
    Yeah, she is a hard-working gal who has clawed her way to the top and her privileged upbringing had nothing to do with it.

    Bill Gates, though he didn't graduate from college, grew up in a upper middle class family and attended an exclusive preparatory school. The prep school was where he first became involved with computers, which weren't available at that time (in the late 60's) to average American school children. I'm not even sure if computers were available to the average college student back then. Yes, what Gates has achieved is amazing, yet luck played a significant role--he was at the right place at the right time, opportunites available to only a handful of people. And Gates himself recognizes this fact which is why he and his father believe in estate tax and increasing taxes on upper levels of income.

  • Sasha Pachev Provo, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 12:24 p.m.

    There is nothing wrong with the gap. We should expect it. Improvements in technology make it possible for one person to make a contribution that is worth the life time work of 100 people or more. For example, a software engineer can write a program in a few hours that replaces 10 data entry people. An astute businessman can organize a team of engineers that will create devices that replace thousands of workers.
    What is wrong is that while some move forward, others fall through the cracks and are left in a state where they struggle to make ends meet.
    Instead of a system of wealth re-distribution we need a system that helps the people who are falling through the cracks achieve their potential. They need help identifying their talents, figuring out which of them are useful in the economy, and then developing those talents.

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2011 10:40 a.m.

    You might expand your education beyond "People Magazine".
    Guess you must have never heard of the Hilton family and their massive wealth (Conrad Hilton, Hilton Hotels, etc).
    She's kind of like Mitt Romney, and the other trust fund kids.

  • Voice of Reason Layton, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 10:12 a.m.

    Truthseeker - The problem with your study is that it is based on a faulty premise that Presidents matter to the economy the most. In reality, it is the Congress that has a far greater and more immediate impact on the economy than the White House for a number of reasons, most notably because they hold the purse strings. The only time a President really gets what they want budget-wise is when their party holds the Congress, and even then it's often an exercise in compromise. And the truth is, neither the President nor the Congress have nearly the effect on the economy that many think they do.

    This truth remains: Poor incomes have grown much faster under GOP Congresses than under Democrat Congresses, when they almost haven't grown at all. But honestly, I don't credit the GOP or blame the Democrats all that much in either case.

    Lane Myer - You're making the demand-side-only argument common on the left, which ignores the fundamental reality that demand can't happen until people have jobs, and jobs can't happen until companies (mostly rich people, sorry) hire them. The key is a mixture of BOTH supply-side and demand-side policy.

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 28, 2011 10:01 a.m.

    Why is that when a discussion about changing a failed system that was instituted by President Reagen 30 years ago that lowered the taxes on the rich with the promise that they would create jobs and that the economic benefit would be shared by all is an attack on the rich. Trickle down economics was suppose to free up capital for the rich (job creators) so that they could create more better paying jobs, and everyone would benefit. An examination of the results very clearly shows that those at the top have benefited and are currently benefiting significantly, those at the bottom have lost significantly and are currently losing significantly, and those in the middle are trying not to get pushed to the bottom. This is not debatable,and saying it is not class warfare. Reagonomics has failed the American people it is time to rethink our economic structure. History has shown that creating a system where the majority of the money and resources placed in the hands a very few will eventually lead to civil unrest and ultimately a revolution. Those who fail to learn from the past are doomed to repeat it.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 9:52 a.m.

    Typical Republican

    The answer to the increasing middle class - rich gap is to get rid of the progressive income tax and death tax, and institute a flat tax.

    Sept. 28, 2011 9:50 a.m.

    Two Comments: 1) in the graph that shows the distribution of wealth in 3 color coded bars, the last bar is titled "ideal distribution". Would someone explain to me why the ideal requires that 30 percent of the population must remain poor. This is utter nonsense

    2) Which political party survives only on the backs of the poor, and in their "ideal" world still must have 30 percent poor. Therefore, there shall never be a redistribution of wealth, only the rhetoric.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Sept. 28, 2011 9:50 a.m.

    To "Christy | 11:26 p.m" it's funny that you ask what Paris Hilton did to "earn" her wealth. (I am not a fan, but at least recognize reality.)

    Paris Hilton earned her money through her modeling career, She has appeared in at lest 10 movies, had 3 TV shows, and numerous cameo's on other shows, she has recorded a music album, and has written 2 books.

    Apparently even Paris Hilton works for the money that she has.

    To "UtahBlueDevil | 7:46 a.m." your example proves the point that many (not all) of the poor are not willing to work as hard as the wealthy. If the Virginia Coal miner doesn't earn enough to send his kids to college, why didn't that miner move away, get a loan and start a business, or send his kids to college using educational loans? You make the poor look like ambitionless people who are trapped and are forced into manual labor.

  • floridian navarre, fl
    Sept. 28, 2011 9:41 a.m.

    As an outsider - I'm in Florida - I find it very interesting to read these comments. My wife and I tried living in Utah for a couple of years a while ago, but for several reasons had to move back to where we are now. As we looked at houses to buy we saw 5, 6, 7 bedroom homes, with every kid having his own room, furniture, TV, computer, and other goodies. While there I had to chuckle every time I saw another house being built higher up the mountain in all parts of the Wasatch - "look at me, I'm above you". While there the best selling SUV was the Cadillac Escalade - "look what I'm driving". And these were young families, with little children, just starting out in life and careers. And to afford the extravagance both the Mom and Dad had jobs. Many of today's rich lived modestly, saved, invested, as they planned for and then made their future. Don't demand they be taxed; follow their example!

  • Lane Myer Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 9:27 a.m.

    voice of reason: "In reality, if you destroy the rich, you literally destroy the economy. Rare Paris Hilton freeloader exceptions notwithstanding, the rich are generally rich because they have grown the economy and created jobs...that is the only, repeat only, way an economy can grow."


    I beg to differ.

    The way to make the economy grow is to have more consumers who want and can afford to buy products.

    The rich may loan the money to start a new company, but if there are no customers (beside the rich) to buy the product, that company will fold - the rich loses, the company loses, the employees lose. It starts a cycle.

    Right now the rich are not even willing to invest in new companies.

  • abinadi Magna, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:46 a.m.

    Near as I can tell, the kids aren't even planning on buying a truck. they're just planning on living with their parents and hanging out with their friends all day. And, don't blame it on the teachers either folks. The teachers in Westlake are just as dedicated as those in Wasatch, but the kids are vastly different. Sorry, but I am absolutely disgusted with the whole situation and where it is headed. Very soon we will be a 3rd world country!

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:46 a.m.

    Re:Voice of Reason
    Nobody is advocating "destroying the rich." Do you believe returning tax rates to Clinton levels will destroy the rich?

    Maybe you can provide your sources, so we can read it too. I came across an article from Princeton, "Partisan Politics and Income Distribution" which says exactly the opposite of what you are asserting. The researchers found that under Democratic Administrations income growth has been more vigorous among the poor; and during Republican Administrations the reverse is true.
    I don't believe liberals adhere to the notion that economics is a zero sum game at all. It is conceivable that poor and rich can both prosper. And concentrating most of the nation's wealth in fewer hands isnt going to grow the economy. When a larger percentage of the populous has income to spend, the economy grows.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:44 a.m.

    Worf - do you really think the rich are putting their kids in under performing public schools? t is the middle class kids that are kept in underperforming schools - not the rich.

    Carman - you are absolutely right. But how do you build up education in these areas that are 1) economically depressed and hence have no money to improve their schools and 2) culturally education to make a living has never been a need, and these kids only point of reference is their own parents, who themselves have little education.

    Yes, you get the occactional exceptional kid who has vision beyond their own circumstances. But unfortunately that is the exception, not the rule.

    Hey, I agree that we are competing in an ever more knowledge based world... and were not competing within our own boarders anymore. And education is not the only key - look up the back grounds on the two I mentioned, neither has a college degree, yet are both in the top 5 richest people in the country.

    It is a complex issue, not easily or simply decomposed into those who are willing to work and those that aren't.

    Stiffling rich - that is funny.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:28 a.m.

    This philosophy is destroying our education. Students with high grades are put into groups with the lower and are stifled. The focus of education centers on the under-achieving.

    By stifling the rich, we'll have a level playing field of a third world country. There is a pattern to all of this.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 8:26 a.m.

    To UtahBlueDevil:

    The folks in NC and WV need to get an EDUCATION! We live in a knowledge based economy, where most of the value comes from the development, application and support of applied science and technology. But too many folks are coasting through our sub-par high schools, avoid taking challenging math and science classes, take a job right out of high school so they can by their "truck", and are generally unwilling to make the personal sacrifices necessary to get and utilize a modern education. We are buried in a 1940's style public education system that prepares barely 20% of our students for success in a knowledge based economy. Pining for the mid-to-late industrial period manufacturing and mining jobs that were more prevailent in the middle part of the 20th century is folly. It won't bring either social advancement or prosperity to the poor.

    The real answer is addressing the education gap, including teaching our students life skills like 1) How to think critically 2) How to focus on customer value and 3) How to keep your skills current. Even among the skilled, too many have lazily let their skils become obsolete.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 28, 2011 7:46 a.m.

    "The rich have it and the poor want it. Only problem is that the poor aren't willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it."

    You tell that to the people here in this state (NC) whose jobs went away when the mills shut down and moved overseas. Or try telling that to the people in West Virginia who grew up in small mining towns - working underground for hours in unbelievable conditions - only to make just enough to make ends meet, less alone send their kids to college. Tell them that the only problem is that they "aren't willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it".

    The advantages my kids have compared to those who live across town are almost embarrasing. To say the opportunity is the same - just desire is lacking - is a statement of either real ignorance or arrogance.

    Really folks, life just is not that simple. Do you really think the only difference between you conservative commentors and people like Bill Gates and Larry Ellison is "Desire"?


  • Voice of Reason Layton, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 7:42 a.m.

    The big error in judgment being made by the neosocialists on here is that economics is a zero-sum game..."if a rich man gets more, then a poor man gets less." That idea, right there, which has been enshrined as a Moral Truth by the left, is perhaps the biggest, most economically dangerous fallacy to come along since 20th Century Communism...not really though, since that was the foundation of 20th Century Communism.

    In reality, if you destroy the rich, you literally destroy the economy. Rare Paris Hilton freeloader exceptions notwithstanding, the rich are generally rich because they have grown the economy and created jobs...that is the only, repeat only, way an economy can grow.

    And Pagan, oh skeptical Pagan...the data source for my post showing that the poor's incomes grow much faster under GOP Congresses came from (Glenn Beck? Limbaugh? Charlton Heston?) that hotbed of right-wing spin...the IRS.

  • abinadi Magna, UT
    Sept. 28, 2011 7:23 a.m.

    Many people probably don't know the history of democracy. A prince who would be king led a Spartan attack on Athens and killed off all the aristocracy. The outraged citizens counterattacked the next day and defeated the Spartans, but when they returned to their city, there was no one to lead them. They debated it for several days when someone suggested, "Why don't we just govern ourselves?" The upper class would never have allowed it to happen had they not been dead. Sure, the rich are hard working. Aren't we all? They are also greedy and they think we are all too stupid to govern ourselves or our property. That is why they want total control and why eventually everything will go back to default.

  • Vince the boonies, mexico
    Sept. 28, 2011 6:56 a.m.

    These comments and disagreements are getting out of control. Please re-read the article commentors. It says that in the past 25 years the top 1% has gone from controlling 12% of wealth to 25% today. Now does that mean that in 25 more years the top 1% will control 50% if this trend continues? Where would an economy be then? There's a reason government regulates some things and needs too! Lying, stealing, cheating, decieving and jamming power down others throats needs oversight. Just look at wealthy dictorial run countries in the middle east today that a small percentage control the finances and what is happening. Is that where we are going?

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    Sept. 28, 2011 3:04 a.m.

    Loo at all the uprisings on history and you will see that when the rich poor gap got out of control the poor rose up and took the rich peoples stuff. Be rich, fine, but a little back for the roads, police, fighfighters and other thing society provides with taxes.

  • Christy Beaverton, OR
    Sept. 28, 2011 1:06 a.m.

    KM | 9:32 p.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Cedar Hills, UT
    one last thought...

    Those who spend too much of their time coveting the riches of another have spent their lives as imbalanced as the super rich that they despise so much.


    The majority (2/3 of Americans) who agree that the 2% wealthiest Americans be taxed once again at 1990's levels (back up from 35% to 39.6%) are not 'coveting' anyone's riches. When the tax rates go back to what they were under Clinton, none of us are going to get rich from it. Rather, we hope our country can begin to eek out some semblance of economic fairness in that the jobless can actually find some work and pay their bills, 1 in 4 children maybe not have to live in poverty, our senior citizens not have to chose between medicine and food, and not one single veteran ever be homeless.

    C'mon conservatives. How can you claim to be the 'moral majority' when you fight only for the people who want for nothing?

  • common sense in Idaho Pocatello, id
    Sept. 28, 2011 12:19 a.m.


    Well Said.

  • Christy Beaverton, OR
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:26 p.m.

    Rifleman | 10:52 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Salt Lake City, Utah

    Re: Pagan | 9:55 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011

    The rich have it and the poor want it. Only problem is that the poor aren't willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it.


    And what of a child born into wealth, and a child born into poverty? Is it really your belief that the child born into poverty isn't as willing to put forth the same effort as the child born into wealth?

    What exactly did Paris Hilton do to earn all that money she's got?

    The greatest indicator of a child's future economic success is that of his parent's success (or lack thereof). Not everyone is born with the same opportunities.

    The 'poor are poor because they are lazy' and the 'rich are rich because they're industrious' meme is sold by the likes of Limbaugh (who today had to say that the word that has had 'the most disastrous effect on the advancement of everybody in this culture' is 'compassion') and is lapped up by the likes of you, Rifleman.

    Wake. Up.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:14 p.m.

    Re:the truth
    Who are the recipients of govt aid? It is primarily the elderly, the disabled and children. People don't choose the circumstances of their birth, there is a certain amount of luck involved in being successful.

    Some poor could get "richer" when they have high quality education, a safe place to live, food security, community/family support, job training, adequate healthcare, including mental health services and hope. The wealthy can contribute to Improving schools, to funding college grant programs, after school programs. CEOs can increase the wages of their employees, provide high quality daycare facilities, college scholarships for employee's children. They can sacrifice a little more in the form of taxes, especially now when some responsible people lost their jobs through no fault of their own and maybe nobody wants to hire them because they're too old. Maybe they can contribute to the sustainability of Social Security or Medicare. Increasing their taxes won't change their standard of living while cutting programs for those at the bottom may close doors, forever.

    Poverty is a moral issue, especially in a society where people have the privilege of voting and shaping their society.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:11 p.m.

    What is it about yelling politians at a pep rally, which make people so gullible? Making villains out of successful Americans? What kind of president would do this? Does he want to transform America to a Somalia or Kenya?

    BO is not trying to create jobs, but save his own.

  • cpafred SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:06 p.m.

    To set the record straight, the idea that taxing capital gains represents double taxation is completely wrong. Taxing dividends received from public corporations does represent double taxation because the corporation paid tax on the income before it was distributed.
    Capital gain income is totally different than dividend income. If I buy 100 shares of stock from some guy, hold it for a while, and sell it to some other guy, the spread between my purchase price and my selling price has never been taxed. The "double taxation" argument only applies to dividends; not to capital gains.

  • cpafred SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:55 p.m.

    In almost every country on the face of this earth (and certainly all the "successful" ones), high personal incomes are taxed at higher marginal rates than low personal incomes. I believe this has absolutely nothing to do with what is right or wrong; it is solely the result of economic and political expediency. Wealthier people are taxed at higher rates to raise enough revenue to finance common projects and to keep the poor from rising up and seizing the means of production (by the way Russia is one of the few countries on earth without graduated individual income tax rates). In short, graduated rates (right or wrong) keep the peace and allow capitalist democracies to exist. It's the price we pay to have our republic. Plato had it about right when he claimed income imbalance was the fatal ailment of all republics.
    So to those who argue graduated rates are unfair, I say duh, so what. Move to Russia, comrade, and enjoy their flat tax rate.

  • KM Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:32 p.m.

    one last thought...

    Those who spend too much of their time coveting the riches of another have spent their lives as imbalanced as the super rich that they despise so much.

  • DanielWayneLewis SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:31 p.m.

    All I'm going to say on this matter is that when the pioneers came here, they lived under an equitable system of wealth. The reason the pioneers were able to survive here in a relatively inhospitable climate- and thrive- was because they worked together. Were they communist? No, but private accumulation of wealth was not priority number one. The desire for excessive wealth has led to the downfall of many a man; and a society is only composed of it's members, so the logical (and obvious) conclusion is that our society is replacing the desires of goodliness with the pursuit of mammon.

  • KM Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:31 p.m.

    I think that statistics, like poles, can be manipulated. America is not a country that was set up to give everybody equal results, I.E., no poor and no rich - just all the same. It is a country where all have equal opportunity. If you want to devote all of your energy, education and life to becomming as rich as possible...have at it! As for me, I am trying to find a balance between eternal priorities vs temporal priorities. I actually feel sorry for those uber rich who have given their lives and their souls for something as fleeting as worldly possessions.

  • FDRfan safety dictates, ID
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:21 p.m.

    XelaDave | 11:07 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Salem, UT
    We insist on voting like a rich person and then living poor- the great American paradox

    Did you ever hit the nail on the head. You articulated my feelings so perfectly. I don't understand how so many LDS vote emphatically Republican but live as Democrats. Rush Limbaugh and Glen Beck are almost idolized.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 8:59 p.m.

    To abinadi:

    The rich aren't ABLE to exploit the poor. This is Marxist, leftist babble - nothing more. With few exceptions, the market determines the wages of the poor. It is simply that the poor have non-unique skills, little education, and often have other problems such as self-destructive habits or mental or physical health issues. The latter can and should be addressed via a social safety net and by local charities. The former issues are more difficult. Investing in education is a start, but focusing on reasonable access to education is much more reasonable than all the hand-wringing about equality of outcomes. We should focus on making the playing field as level as possible in terms of access to education, then get out of the way and let people determine their own success of failure via their choices. There is ZERO way to get to equal distribution of wealth because human beings by nature respond to incentives not to work.

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Sept. 27, 2011 8:45 p.m.

    Pagen | 3:47 p.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    "When Republicans had control of the House, Senate and Presidency from 2000-2006 the national unemployment rate AND the national debt...doubled.
    Clinton left office with 4.5% unemployment and Obama inherited...8.1%."

    Silly Pagen. You're obfuscating the truth once again. Obama took over the presidency in 2008. In 2006, the unemployment rate was still under 5% (far from double the 4.5% rate, as you erroneously claim).

    I willingly recognize that both parties share in the blame for our economic situation, but, factually, it was only after the Democrats took control of the House and Senate that the national unemployment rate DOUBLED.

    Life's better without partisan blinders on. Come, join the rest of the thinkers who read more than just headlines. You might just like it!

  • joecoog North Las Vegas, NV
    Sept. 27, 2011 8:33 p.m.

    lds engineer
    Seriously, 17 to 35 an hour is borderline poverty. Thats a joke. It basically comes down to the decisions we make. I make 12 an hour and work 40 hrs a week. My wife makes 13.70 an hour and works 25 to 30 hrs a week. We are deffinitely not rich but we are also deffinitely not poor and its because the decisions we make. We have one kid with one on the way. We own own home. We have two tvs with direc tv and dvr. We have internet. We have 2 lap tops and a desk top computer. We have two cars with no loans on them. We are able to max out my wifes company 401k match. We have a yellow lab. And earlier this year we bought a property that we pay 400 a month for and we are renting out on a 2 year lease at 650 a month. I beleive all these things poor people cant afford but the left will tell you that Im poor. What it comes down to is our choices. I make sure I dont overpay for anything

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 8:19 p.m.

    The key difference between rich and poor? A relevant education, that's what! We have 70% or more of the population who have no clue what it takes to provide real value in the marketplace. They either lack an education, or have wasted their time in college on largely irrelevant degrees. Even many who have reasonable educations don't know how to work hard, fail to focus on delivering real value to their employers and customers, and generally have an entitlement mentality - believing that if they show up to work and put in a half-hearted effort, that they somehow deserve a good lifestyle.

  • the truth Holladay, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 8:17 p.m.

    I am stil waiting for a LEFTY to explain how making the rich poorer will change anything.

    HOW will poor get richer?

    HOW will the middle class get richer?

    HOW does enriching the government fix anything?

    How does rich liberal elite rule any better than the rich right?

    How are poor any differnet under communism than they were under czars or the french aristocracy?

    dependency on government is NOT and improvement.

    If you take from the rich you will change the disparty gap, by making someone else pooer,

    but poor and middle class are unchanged.

    Enough with the LEFTEST lies, and explain how you are going make the poor richer not more dependent on government and a political party.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 27, 2011 7:59 p.m.

    A government of democratically elected people that collects "taxes" to do the peoples work, or even pay for bonds approved by the voting public = stealing


    And I suppose the the imprisonment of those who break laws passed by these same elected officials equals slavery, or something like that.

    Or do we just pick and choose what parts of the constitution we like, and claim those parts we don't like as illegal activities.


  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 27, 2011 7:34 p.m.

    LDS Aerospace Engineer,

    I agree. Good comment.

  • Northern Logan, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 7:06 p.m.

    These comments are ludicrous.

    Part of being in America means you too can be rich, but you have to stop buying all the crud that you don't need. 50 inch LCD plasmas, you don't need that cruise you don't need that Yukon you don't need a unlimited cell phone plan.

    Being rich is just a choice. So take some accountability get up off your couch turn off American Idol and start a lawn mowing business.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 27, 2011 7:03 p.m.

    Agree. This issue has been recycled and rehashed many times over.
    Question. Do you believe it harmful to have a large imbalance between a smaller wealthy class and average Americans?
    OR do you believe the disparity is exaggerated and no need to be concerned?
    What do you think of the statistics presented, that there are fewer countries with disparity greater than ours?

    (For the record, count me in the class whose taxes Democrats want to increase.)

  • abinadi Magna, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 6:58 p.m.

    Before the French Revolution, the upper crust owned all the assets in the entire country and the other 95% had nothing - not even a crust of bread. Crime was rampant because that was the only way people could survive - very much like Central and South America today. Why should 5% of the people own everything and the rest own nothing? Can anyone see the injustice of that? Is the US heading toward the same situation? I believe it is. Of course, it is our own fault for letting it happen. One only has to visit Wasatch Junior High one day and Westlake the next to see where things are headed - who the educated upper crust will be and who will have the crust of bread. The rest of us ought to wake up!

  • KM Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 6:17 p.m.

    This is the silliest debate that keeps on recycling and revisiting. The godly dems have framed the argument in the fashion that one group is mistreated and if the other group just would "pay their fair share" everything would work out for the collective US. I think that people know that its not just or fair to take anothers property from them. Its theirs. They earned it. Not you. Small children are taught not to steal other childrens toys just because you want it. Yet, some people never grow up and never stop coveting anothers toys.

  • abinadi Magna, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 6:04 p.m.

    The rich get rich by exploiting and praying on the poor by exploiting their labor and paying low wages and then by selling goods and services to them at inflated prices. It is only right that they should give some of it back. We all live in a giant company, after all, and we buy our necesities from the company store. The purpose of a democracy is to keep the power out of the hands of the rich and powerful, who have it by default, and protect the rest of us from them.

  • peacemaker Provo, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 6:04 p.m.

    Lest we forget:

    No arsenal or no weapon in the arsenals of the world is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women.
    ~ Ronald Reagan

    It is not my intention to do away with government. It is rather to make it work -- work with us, not over us; stand by our side, not ride on our back. Government can and must provide opportunity, not smother it; foster productivity, not stifle it.
    ~Ronald Reagan, First Inaugural Address, January 20, 1981

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 6:02 p.m.

    "After a year of this, you now want to tax me at a higher tax rate, because I am earning interest on what I didn't spend and have more wealth than you."

    Interest rates are so low you'd have to have tens of thousands of dollars in the bank before the capital gains tax affects you to any noticable extent. Plus you'd be charged taxes on the interest, not what you saved. That's new income for you being taxed at a lower rate than regular income.

  • peacemaker Provo, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 5:59 p.m.

    Old Story: Separate the classes to gain support from the masses. Used in past history to destroy the establishment of Free Governments.

    Ronald Regan identified our need: "Cut taxes to starve government".

    Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.
    ~ Ronald Reagan

  • Brother Chuck Schroeder A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Sept. 27, 2011 5:44 p.m.

    Toss the untra-rich under the bus, give all their money to the poor and middle-class. Their spending will jump-start-America. What do you get when you mix the GOP's shameless voter suppression, hyper-partisan gerrymandering, and other outrageous schemes to rig our electoral process?. You get proof. Proof that Republican state legislators have no respect. But we already knew they have no respect for the President or for their Democratic colleagues. Now we know Republican legislators have no respect for you, the voters, either. The rules of our democracy are not supposed to be abused for partisan gain. Our constitutional right to vote is not supposed to be attacked through frivolous new hurdles aimed at suppressing certain voters. None of that is what our founders intended. This is more than just the GOP's typical dirty tricks this is an attack on basic democratic values. The Koch Brother's sponsors of these shameless GOP schemes to suppress the vote won't go unpunished. We need to stop this radicalism today and start undoing the damage right-wing legislators are causing. Their proposed plan is to gerrymander the Electoral College.

    Obama 4 more yesrs come 2012?.

    We'll see.

    My views.

  • averageguy WASHINGTON, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 5:00 p.m.

    The real question here is where money comes from... There is no such thing as collective wealth. Money comes from creating value in the marketplace. Just because two people work the same hours does not mean they create the same marketplace value. No amount of government regulation or sympathy for the poor will create parity of wealth and a sustainable economy.

    Government taxation and regulation can kill the few rich, but they will never elevate the whole class of poor. To create equal pay based upon anything other than what a free market economy says it should be will fail and reduce the wealth of the nation, both rich, middle class and poor as a whole.

    A free market economy with low taxation, plenty of incentive to succeed and a big dose of self imposed charity by those blessed to be rich, along with an accountable determination of self reliance by the poor will work towards solving the wealth gap.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:58 p.m.

    It's because those two gentlemen Earned there money, and understand that it took many others for them to make their fortunes... unlike those who inherited it and have never lifted a finger for want and now want more for nothing.
    Talk about a handout?

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:29 p.m.

    How do conservatives explain the views of Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, the two wealthiest Americans, who both feel the ultra rich are not taxed enough?

    Are they also engaging in class warfare - against themselves?

    Or are they rightfully concerned about the direction of American society... ie, higher & higher concentrations of wealth are not conducive to a properous society, overall.

  • mcclark Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:26 p.m.

    RE Rifleman "The rich have it and the poor want it. Only problem is that the poor arent willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it" What an arrogant ignorant thing to say.

  • Dart Thrower Ogden, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:13 p.m.

    It's only warfare if there are two sides and you fight back

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:06 p.m.

    What I find most humorus is that Paris Hilton apparently works harder and smarter than all of the conservatives on this web site, not to mention all the jobs she has created.

  • Anti Government Alpine, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 4:00 p.m.

    The rich may be rich but the reason we have soooooo many poor people dependent on the government is because we have a political party who develops and nurtures a political system to have as many people dependent on the govt as possible.

    I mean are you too stupid to realize that a bunch of independent self-sufficient people don't need much government?

    Who needs a government? Who needs govt services?

    The poor obviously and the democrats (and some republicans too) literally want as many people dependent on govt as possible. Why? So they can stand up in front of you during their campaigns and tell you "what they are going to give/do for you".

    If you are earning your own way what do you need from them besides basic infrastructure and defense?

    If you are poor you need everything....which is just they way they want it.

    You people who are demonizing the rich and demanding their money to "redistribute to the poor" have been deceived and are being used for politically corrupt purposes and power.

    No matter what govt has they always spend alot more. Racking up debt. Very revealing of their true intentions.


  • LDS Aerospace Engineer Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:54 p.m.

    worf | 3:10 p.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Mcallen, TX
    Envy, envy, envy! Take away the rich and the poor goes on a crush diet. The rich engineers,...


    FYI - Engineers in Utah make $17-$35 per hour.

    An inexperienced high school kid
    [no wife, no kids, no house, no car payment, and no student loans]
    flipping burgers make $10.

    I would not consider $17-$35 per hour "Middle Class" anymore, much MUCH closer to the poverty levels.

    My friend - the Doctor - same story.
    He said the only Doctors getting ahead these days are the Plastic Surgeons.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:54 p.m.

    @VST: If the rich's prerogative is to become richer at any cost that returns us to a feudalistic society. Kiss your rights, freedoms and property goodbye. You'll be slaving away for the man and maybe, just maybe, make enough to put a roof over your head. Believe me when I say these people could care less if you lived or died. Is that really the kind of life you want to live? Because that's what they want the world to become.

  • lket Bluffdale, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:53 p.m.

    the countries money went to the wars, and the rich made money and still are. lets get some back. and no one said it was going to the poor its going to pay the bills much of which is still going back to the rich. they own all the big companies the military buy things from so why cant anyone see this. when the govenment spends the rich profit the most.

  • libertarian Cedar City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:50 p.m.

    LDSlib, You can't be serious! "Redistrubution" of wealth is nothing short of theft. You must have never actually worked for anything in your life and must have never read the 10 Commandments. Even moderate "wealth" comes from taking risks and working hard. All value comes from human effort, what gives you a "right" to someone else's effort? Just a bunch of socialist drivel. Are there lots of rich people who "cheated" to get rich? Probably, but two wrongs don't make a right.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:42 p.m.


    You still haven't reconciled "a nation's resources belong to its people" with "rich people should pay for what you and I use"

    Those are two separate thoughts and you still havent given even a slightest good reason for the connection.

    A nation's resources blah blah blah.


    So why should my rich neighbor have to pay for what I use?


    When are we going shopping?

    You still haven't answered.

    When are we going car shopping?

    Oh, and that travel you have to Las Vegas?

    Bad news my friend:

    I just booked a vacation to Hawaii. And I told my travel agent to bill you for the majority of my trip. You make more money.


  • Voice of Reason Layton, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:20 p.m.

    I am so tired of the left focusing on the "gap" between rich and poor...that sort of naked class envy is exactly what led to the world's rash of Communist Revolutions in the 20th Century, and we all know how well that worked out.

    It is far more telling to compare the actual incomes of the poor to inflation, to see how well their actual incomes have grown over time. In the Evil Capitalist United States, the poorest half of incomes grew faster - yes, faster - than inflation in 2/3 of the years since 1987, beating inflation by an average of 1.34% every year. Is that great? No - but that's orders of magnitude than how the poor fared under Communist/Socialist economies in the same time period, when inflation was so high that virtually everyone's income lost to inflation.

    In fact, GOP Congresses (Congress holds the purse strings) the poorest half of incomes grew over 2.5% faster than inflation...under Democrat Congresses, it was barely over zero (0.4%). Yes, GOP policies have tended to benefit the wealthy...and the poor, far more than Democrat policies have. At least that's what history says.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:10 p.m.

    Envy, envy, envy! Take away the rich and the poor goes on a crush diet. The rich engineers, dentists, business owners, doctors, etc, didn't cause our economic problems. Its corrupt leaders who were voted in by:

    A. the rich
    B. the middle class
    C. the poor
    D. all groups of Americans who lack common sense.

  • Brother Chuck Schroeder A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Sept. 27, 2011 3:06 p.m.

    We the Middle-class people of this Nation must "stop coddling the ultra super-rich," and increase the tax burden for the country's billionaires. Get rid of off shore tax safe havens, put tax cheats in prison, and, "TAKE BACK AMERICA" as we knwn it. The ultra rich love the Republicans that have worked together with them for the last 40 years to de-regulate the multinational corporations. They refuse to get rid of NAFTA. Closed their eyes to importing illegal cheap labor that will not abide by our tax and labor rates which forces unfair labor competition. Subsidize corporations that outsource their companies manufacturing to other countries, forcing competition with third world labor rates. They keep us arguing with each other on social issues to keep our hate of the other side and support of our own party when the whole bunch of them are busy neglecting our country, crushing our middle class and giving unlimited lobbying power to the corporations, so they can benefit themselves even further. They have controlled inflation of our income, but let healthcare, transportation, travel, housing costs skyrocket out of affordability. This makes the old "Honest Living" attainable to fewer and fewer people.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 2:24 p.m.

    Chuck, why is it, in your tirades about the rich and famous you never mention, the richest american, Bill Gates, no 2 richest american, Warren Buffet, no3 Larry Ellison, no5 George Soros. As you say their "rich victory over the middle class is nearly complete." The fact you don't shows your rants are one sided and without any real credibility.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 2:12 p.m.

    I honestly believe it will take open rebellion to set this country on the right path again. All other efforts are doomed to fail.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 2:03 p.m.

    "For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
    Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment." Midwest Mom please show me in this scripture, were it says the government is to impart my portion. It does not say the law of the marxist nation. And claiming you are coming from a lds background, you do understand there is no righteousness in being forced to live the law of the gospel. Kind of, was that not Satan's plan. And if you think the government is the best distributer of wealth, then how is that Johnson's war on poverty going?

  • Brother Chuck Schroeder A Tropical Paradise USA, FL
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:56 p.m.

    "My Fellow Americans."

    We must stop "stop coddling the super-rich," and increase the tax burden for the country's billionaires. US Government does not have powers outside of Washington DC. The federal district is therefore not a part of any U.S. state. It was formed from land along the Potomac River donated by the states of Maryland and Virginia however, the Virginia portion was returned by Congress in 1846. Congress has an obligation to oversee how DC spends its money because "federal taxpayer dollars fund a large portion of the District's budget." Many people readily agree with that statement. It seems to make sense. Of course the federal government pays for the operations of the federal district. This argument is also often cited by opponents of DC voting rights, who say that DC residents shouldn't have a vote in Congress because they are recipients of so much federal government largesse. These billionaires own America, and the law makers in DC. These people run us, and, everything we do. They control our life. The Koch Brother's rich victory over the middle class is nearly complete, soon there will be none of us left. If we let them, that is.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:44 p.m.

    The top 1 percent are actually offshore bankers that rule the world.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:43 p.m.

    Our leaders in both parties are robbing us blind and laughing in all of your faces because you think they are actually trying to create jobs.

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:42 p.m.

    If I earn two dollars an hour and spend only one dollar, and save the other dollar, and you earn two dollars an hour and spend two dollars, then by common logic, I will be wealthier than you. After a year of this, you now want to tax me at a higher tax rate, because I am earning interest on what I didn't spend and have more wealth than you. As a marxist you claim I have used the nations resources and you are entitled to my wealth. And you complain about the corporations taking money.

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:39 p.m.

    "For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
    Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment."
    (Doctrine & Covenants 104:17-18)

    It's interesting how the political right claims the moral high ground and then picks and chooses which one of God's commandments they will follow. I know, some will say that this scripture was intended for the united order only. There is the spirit and the letter of the law, however, and we are not to be commanded in all things. There is a widening gap between rich and poor. The pride cycle is alive and well in America. We all know how that story ends.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:36 p.m.

    How does taxing the rich more bring those people in poverty, out of poverty?

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:26 p.m.

    And yet the right wing and the tea party continue the trend, blindly supporting those who are slowing squeezing the life out of them.

  • williary Kearns, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:26 p.m.

    Clearly, the way to fix this is to cut taxes, especially for the wealthiest Americans and corporations. Not to mention unregulate the financial markets allowing the wealthiest Americans free rein again to pillage and plunder with our money.

    It was to work, this time around. Right Republicans?

    Under Clinton, the middle class was extremely strong, actually gaining ground on the rich. All while the rich were still rich, and still increased their net worth.

    Once Republicans got control back, the rich continued to get richer, while the middle class has become poor.

    Those are just the facts. No matter how much Republicans don't want to accept them.

    The rich will always be rich. What actually benefits the rich even more, and makes them even richer, is a strong middle class.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:23 p.m.

    "How is the capital gains tax double taxation when you only pay tax on the GAIN? "

    That's exactly what I thought when I read Stu's (Glenn Beck's producer or whatever) list of reasons why Buffett was wrong. He claimed it was double taxation when I don't see how that could be true.

    @lost in DC
    "what right have you to someone else's wealth?"

    I think that's what future generations are asking ALL of us. You're not innocent in this either, you're stealing from them. I on the other hand want the bush tax cuts repealed for everyone, including myself. Then I want to end the wars, cut defense spending by a third, and then balance the budget with other spending cuts.

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:21 p.m.

    Fred Vader,

    Certainly taxing the most wealthy cannot be the only solution. There's no way that the money generated by raising their tax level (at least to the rates instituted by Reagan) could possibly offset the spending this nation incurred in Iraq. Spending needs to be reigned in...that much is clear. Particularly within the defense department, which has essentially enjoyed a blank check.

    But the taxes on the rich could go to programs that might actually help the economy...small business loans that actually create jobs (unlike the myth of the millionaire just chomping at the bit to free up some money to create some jobs), education grants to help our working class compete on a global scale, or other similar projects.

    If Republicans really are serious about fixing the economy, why did they balk at Obama's proposal to create a 100% tax writeoff for expenditures directly related to job creation (new hiring, equipment modernization, etc)?

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:19 p.m.

    "I recall an economics professor telling me one cause of the great depression was too much money was concentrated in too few hands. And those who had money could not spend it fast enough to sustain economic growth. "

    I agree with him. In 1928 the top 20% owned 50% of the wealth. After WWII that fell to ~30% and stayed there until 1980. Then it went up until 2007 it hit 47% of wealth owned by the top 20%. Coincidence? Doubtful.

    "One point that won't leave my mind is a large contributing factor to the wealth distribution came with the bail-outs. "

    I think you're right to some extent. Since it was 47% in 2007 the condition of too much wealth in too few was present before the bailouts. Over the past couple years I think wealth concentration at the top has actually fallen to something like 43-45%. I think your point with the bailouts is that without them the wealth concentration at the top would have fallen even farther.

  • FDRfan safety dictates, ID
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:19 p.m.

    Fred Vader | 1:02 p.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    Oklahoma City, OK
    "I think I read somewhere once that even if we took every penny held by the wealthy 1%, added it all together, and put it into the goverment coffers, that at the rate we are spending today, it wouldn't even put a small dent into the actual debt the we have currently."

    Lets try it and see.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:15 p.m.

    If there is such a thing as class warfare... the rich started it and they intent to continue it, whining about their supposedly burdensome tax levels while insisting we need to "expand the tax base".

    "this article had a nice twist that is very deceptive. "

    Facts are an inconvenient thing and the fact is the income and wealth gaps are widening.

    "I see nothing in the article nor any of the comments that say how taxing the rich more will help the handy-man raise himself out of the working poor and into the middle class."

    It won't, but wealthy people hoarding wealth hasn't done a thing to help create jobs the past decade, and since they're gaining in wealth they seem to be doing well, with our massive deficits being an issue of concern, the least harmful place to cut or tax to help reduce debt is to get rid of the bush tax cuts for the wealthy.

    "BO chased them offshore with the EPA, Obamacare, and the NLRB. "

    How did obama do that? When he got into office it was -700k/month, now we have an 18 month streak of gaining or not losing jobs.

  • Fred Vader Oklahoma City, OK
    Sept. 27, 2011 1:02 p.m.

    I think I read somewhere once that even if we took every penny held by the wealthy 1%, added it all together, and put it into the goverment coffers, that at the rate we are spending today, it wouldn't even put a small dent into the actual debt the we have currently.

    Anyone know if that is valid? If so, how is taxing more going to make any difference if our spending habits are going to remain the same or worse?

  • KM Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:59 p.m.

    I'm starting to hear another talking point from the DNC media and the lemmings on left are parroting it..."the tea party republicans." Pass it on.

    Now lets get back to punishing people for getting a good education, working harder than the rest and making a good living. They cannot deserve wealth! Can they?

  • Fred Vader Oklahoma City, OK
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:51 p.m.

    Republicans don't want to increase the tax rate to the wealthy 1%; in other words forcefully taking money from those that have, to give that those who don't. Got it.

    Democrats do want to increase the tax rate to the wealthy 1%; in other words, requiring those who have more to give to those who have less. Got it.

    How about this as a compromise: Change the tax code to allow those wealthy 1% who want to redistribute their wealth through more taxes to voluntarily be able to do so. Problem solved, no?

    Sounds like there are plenty of wealthy 1 percenters who are just chomping at the bit (i.e. Warren Buffet, President Obama, etc) to be able to pay more in taxes. Let's change the tax code to allow them to do it.

    If it doesn't generate enough government revenue, we can always revisit the forcefully taking it idea later.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:49 p.m.

    time to re-distribute that wealth.. and of course those that support BO get the biggest piece of the pie... after all it's the socialist way!!

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:49 p.m.

    Chris B,

    You name me one thing a US corporation has produced that doesn't initially come out of the nation's resources. You can't make something from nothing. The only things our companies make that don't come from this nation's resources were purchased from another nation, using this nation's resources. What do you think the money you earn at work represents, but a portion of the nation's resources.

    Railroad barons used the nation's lumber, mined the nation's ore, and exploited cheap labor to build their fortunes. Their great-grandchildren fall into the category of people you are defending. Other disparities in our social contract: Our system allows for an inequitable education system. Allocating many of the funds locally leads to affluent neighborhoods providing the best education which leads to acceptance into the best universities which leads to more money. What if all school children got equal educations and the actual smartest got into the best universities and jobs?

    Our nation's economy is weak. Who should we be seeking to reward and encourage...those who have money, or those that do the most to get the economy to rebound?

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:42 p.m.

    The tax system has been restructured by virtually every president since Ronald Reagan including President Obama to give the wealthy further advantages in exchange for them being the "job creators". What has that led to? It certainly hasn't led to jobs. But it has led to the rich controlling a significantly greater portion of the wealth while at the same time the poor have gotten poorer, and the middle class is quickly becoming the lower class. We can "spin" it anyway we want, we can blame anyone we want, but the rich have been advantaged, and they have taken advantage. Is it morally right or wrong, we can argue that, but we cannot argue that the idea of trickle down economics that has been and is still the mainstay of the republican party has been an utter failure, for everyone but those at the top.

  • There You Go Again Saint George, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:41 p.m.

    Drop the current corporate tax rate to zero.

    Make all of those who pay no tax now pay half of their income (including all entitlement income) as a tax.

    This should make corporations happy, because they are people too.

    re-Publicans should be happy as well, although you never can be sure.

  • FieryDarts Kaysville, Utah
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:34 p.m.

    It is important to remember when we are discussing the rich and poor that there are two different figures at play.

    The first is wealth, or the amount of money and assets that a person has. This article was about a study that looked at the distribution of wealth in this country, which is skewed heavily due to the the lack of substantial savings in the majority of households.

    The second is income, or the amount of money you earn in a given year. This is the amount that is usually taxed.

    So, when we say that we are taxing the wealthy, we're really taxing the high earners (regardless of their assets), and when we are talking about the huge disparity in wealth then we're not addressing the amount of money that these people are making.

    That means that, after all this hand-wringing, the only fact that matters is that the percent of total wealth owned by the top quartile doubled. And that probably means that the savings in the middle and bottom were significantly reduced.

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:29 p.m.

    Here is something else to think about. With 44% of congress being classified as millionaires, do you honestly think that they are going to allow anything to pass that will cut into their own wealth, and the wealth of the people who fund their political endeavors?

  • Redshirt1701 Deep Space 9, Ut
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:28 p.m.

    To those whining about what is the richs fair share? They already pay 80% or more of all income taxes, while the bottom 50% pay either $0 in income taxes or have negative tax rates so they get more than they pay.

    You should find the parenting article titled Thats not Fair. It used to be on MSN, but is available at other websites now too. You sound just like the kids they describe. The author says "Whose kids havent at one point hollered, Thats not FAIR! when they felt cheated out of their supposed share of something?" That sounds like you and others like you.

    They go on by stating "Early on, fairness is typically defined in one of two ways: with everyone getting exactly the same thing, or the child getting everything he or she wants....Fairness is a perception about what is deserved or agreed upon, Rode says. It is sometimes very unfair to make things equal."

    So, do we need to help you learn that life isn't "fair", and that you cannot ever have a "fair" system of taxation.

  • ipr Spanish Fork, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:27 p.m.

    I would very much like to have a thumbs down button on this site.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:26 p.m.

    Several people on here have claimed the wealthy should not pay taxes on money they put at "risk" through investments.

    Aside from all the other sacrifices everyone else makes every day to do their job, this argument falls short because it fails to address the extremity of the current situation: when the rich reach a certain level of wealth, they have enough money to hedge every bet they make.

    Who is taking the bigger "risk"? A billionaire hedge fund manager who decides to "risk" a fraction of his wealth by buying stock in this or that company, which risk does not endanger his quality of life in the least? Or an unemployed person who takes the "risk" of putting gas in the tank in order to get to a job interview, in hopes that by the end of the month he'll have a paycheck with which to buy groceries?

    This heroicizing of the rich has gotten ridiculous. There's nothing heroic about clicking around on your E-Trade account. Nothing wrong with it, but it is no more virtuous or worthy of respect than any of the less glamorous jobs that poor people bust their butts to do every day.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:24 p.m.


    Your logic is terribly flawed. "A nation's resources belong to its people"

    There are some resources that are the nation's resouces and there are others that are my resources. And your resources.

    If the US has large oil deposits(which we do) those are the nation's resources.

    If you go to work tomorrow and earn x number of dollars. Those are your resources.

    You should then be charged taxes according what which of the nation's resources you use.

    Why should you pay taxes to cover the resources you use and those I use?

    Again -

    Please tell me next time you're going shopping.

    If you make more money than me I'm going to force you to pay for most of my groceries.

    Please let me know.


    I'm going to work less and contribute less to society because I know ultimately you will be responsible for buying my groceries.

    Thank you

  • ouisc Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:18 p.m.

    I could favor taxing the extreme wealthy at a higher rate.
    But please, let's wait another year until we have a new president who isn't chomping at the bit to spend this additional "revenue."

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:18 p.m.

    Also, Pagan,

    I'm curious about your race and education arguments. You share an article that highlights how income is increasing at different rates for different demographics at a time when affirmative action plans are in place. You then assume that taking away affirmative action plans would have an adverse impact on those statistics. You fail to provide any sort of evidence that affirmative action plans are actually having their intended overall equalizing effect (or that they do not have any "learned helplessness" effects).

    You also share an AP article that refers to national income trends, and then erroneously attribute the number to the state of Utah. National averages show effects across the nation as a whole, but you can't assume that every state experiences the same effects.

    Of course, you would probably have known better if you had taken the time to read more than just headlines.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:17 p.m.

    The tea party wants to make it wider with the no new taxes on the top one percent. Obviously, the top one percent is funding the tea party.

  • lket Bluffdale, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 12:05 p.m.

    we should call the really wealthy what they are robber barrons. look back at how bill gates made his fortune. force and theft. law suit lost to novell word stolen from word pefect. many soft ware companies forced out by them dont buy it or you cant have windows and many other things but big money buys courts and our elected. they were going to break up microsoft but a higher court threw it out. I wonder why? money. this whole country now says values instead of ideals, principles and morals. capitalistic propaganda just like communistic.

  • Hawkeye79 Iowa City, IA
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:58 a.m.

    Pagan | 9:55 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011
    "Where, are the jobs?"

    This is an easy one. I'll just play the game the same way President Obama does:

    Surely, unemployment would have been much worse if the tax cuts hadn't been extended. Even better, the unemployment rate has dropped nearly a half percentage point since the tax cuts were extended, so they must be doing what they were supposed to, right?

    9.5%+ unemployment all of last year
    9.8% in December 2010
    (Bush Tax Cuts extended on Dec. 17, 2010)
    9.4% in January 2011
    8.8-9.2% since

    I'm sure you'll have no trouble accepting this coincidence-based argument as quickly as you accept similar coincidence-based arguments from the President concerning his stimulus success.


  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:58 a.m.

    This bogus "wanting someone elses wealth" and "redistribution of wealth" argument is so old and tired - and frankly over used to the point of being just background noise.

    Progressive tax systems have been a staple of capitalism since its dawn with Adam Smith. Stop pretending it hasn't. In fact, this is the least progressive the tax structure has been in a century.

    The poor pay the same FICA everyone esle does. They pay the same property tax and sales\use taxes everyone does. Their employers pay the same employee taxes do on their higher paid employes. These are all flat taxes. To say the working poor doesn't pay taxes is just another line of fiction the conservatives like to spin trying to demonize those who they feel to been a drain on society.

    No one is asking to "soak it to the rich". The only ones making those claims are the conservatives themselves, most of whom are no where near the income range to have this impact them, or anyone they know.

    I am in the highest tax bracket, and trust me, I am not hurting because of my tax burden. Broken government is hurting far more.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:49 a.m.

    There are two things that the Book of Mormon makes pretty clear:

    1) King Benjamin says we are all poor beggars, and if we jump to judgment about the cause of someone's poverty, we're hypocrites as well.

    2) One of the most consistent markers of a corrupt society is one in which wealth is valued above morality, in which the poor are exploited, and--most of all--in which the gap between the rich and the poor is widest.

  • lket Bluffdale, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:48 a.m.

    simple way out. get rid of income tax get fereral sales tax get rid of all right offs and corporate wellfare. like money for oil companies that wont build enough refineries for the fuel they have anyway. coporate farm subsidies, the list is huge. the rich get theses breaks for nothing other than pure coroption.

  • RedneckLefty St. George, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:46 a.m.

    How come the people who complain about "class warfare" are always the people who are winning it?

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:29 a.m.

    "what right have you to someone else's wealth? What gives you the right to go to someone who has taken significant risks and by hard work and maybe a little good fortune..."

    I always find it entertaining when the very same people who are trying to protect the wealthy's money defend it based on them having to take the "risks" to get it. Yet this is the same political side taking away benefits from Police officers, firefighters, and veterans (see: Wisconsin and Ohio). You tell me who takes more "risks." Most of those "risks" come at a direct cost to the country. Often they involve opening new markets, engaging in mergers, and slashing workforces. These people "risk" the wealth they acquired by the sweat of their workers' brows to find cheaper labor in another country and to leave those very same workers without jobs. Then they cry to Washington that it's "unfair" to them when those same workers need government assistance and ask to get some of the wealth they created back.

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:26 a.m.

    'Only problem is that the poor aren't willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it.' - Rifleman | 10:52 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011


    *'Education is key in helping low-income children move beyond poor' - By Elizabeth Stuart, Deseret News - 11/28/10

    Utah state action?

    *'Utah Legislature: Lawmaker proposes ending affirmative action in higher education' - By Josh Smith - DSNews - 02/12/10

    'Rep. Curtis Oda, R-Clearfield, is proposing legislation that would forbid state agencies, contractors, universities and colleges from providing preference based on race....'

    And yet:

    *'Income gap between black, white families grows' - AP - 11/13/07

    'Thirty-year study shows household income growing, but not at same rate's'

    Rifleman, please explain how a minority in Utah makes, average, 30% LESS THAN a person of the majority...

    and how they are 'not trying hard enough.'

    Must be nice....

    Good day.

  • Anti Government Alpine, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:25 a.m.

    While there is little doubt about the rich getting rich I find it comical that the Dims/Libs incessantly whine about all the tax breaks the rich get.

    Considering the bottom 40% of American taxpayers pay a combined negative 8% in federal income taxes (yes your read correctly..we give them money) it would be pretty difficult for people getting money back from the govt each year to use loopholes and deductions to reduce their tax bill....that they aren't paying to begin with.

    Do you get it yet? Of course the rich use loopholes and deductions to try to reduce their tax bill because they are the ones paying taxes. Duh.

    IRS statistics show that the bottom 80% of Americans pay 10.4% of all federal income tax collected.

    The top .1% of Americans pay 16.4% of all federal income tax collected. This same .1% of top earners pay an average rate of 31% and their average tax bill is 1.1 million.

    So the bottom pay nothing and get refunds to boot. The top .1% are paying 31% and yet they are "...not paying their fair share"? What?

    Redistribution of wealth won't work. We need other solutions.

  • Hellooo Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:24 a.m.

    The problem with such analysis is two fold. One it fails to accurately depict what is the upper middle class. This group have increased their wealth significantly over the past thirty years. Second, it is an apple to oranges comparison in that it compares wealth of the wealthy to what is mostly income to the poor and low middle class. Income comparisons are much less skewed. But, given the most valuable wealth many acquire is their home, and the decline in those values and loss through the recession has greatly reduced wealth in the middle, low and poor economic classes. Income escalation on the asset rich wealthy will do almost nothing to reverse this. What is need is a wealth accumulation program for these classes. This could include forgiving their debt, ending all tax on any of their capital gains, and their meager savings in IRA's, saving accounts etc. And, promoting balanced lower public sector spending, with the funds made available from such focused on growth of private sector economic activiites here.

  • ute alumni Tengoku, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:19 a.m.

    sounds like Bush's fault

  • xscribe Colorado Springs, CO
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:19 a.m.

    @Lost in DC: Now post the increase in jobs from 11/07 to 1/09. Or do you only want to use numbers that support your opinion?

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:11 a.m.

    @Rifleman: Please go tell the single mother holding down two jobs to support her kids that she's not working as hard as the CEO of a multi-million dollar company. Live a day in her shoes and you'll tell a different story.

  • XelaDave Salem, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:07 a.m.

    We insist on voting like a rich person and then living poor- the great American paradox

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 11:03 a.m.

    three of your cut and pastes are on the same thing - nice try spinning one thing into three. Almost as effective as making things up. You also - again - ignored the fact that BO lobbied and voted for ALL those things, so he is as guilty as bush.

    and where do you think we'd be today if the financial system had not been bailed out?

    BO's "anger" was all a show - he's been to wall street a few times at $35,000 per head fundraisers. Yep, some of that bailout money from those bonuses is right now in BO's campaign fund. But I guess since it's BO that you're ok with that kind of graft.

    LDS Lib
    what right have you to someone else's wealth? What gives you the right to go to someone who has taken significant risks and by hard work and maybe a little good fortune has more than you and say, "since you have more than me, I am entitled to be compensated - gimme gimme gimme"? What gives you that right? Where is re-distribution of income a right? Where has it ever been anything but dissincentive to work and fertile ground for graft?

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:52 a.m.

    Re: Pagan | 9:55 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011

    The rich have it and the poor want it. Only problem is that the poor aren't willing to put forth the same effort that the rich did who earned it.

    Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it. -- Ronald Reagan

    The government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other. -- Ronald Reagan

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:50 a.m.

    How is the capital gains tax double taxation when you only pay tax on the GAIN? Ronald Reagan believed capital gains should be taxed as ordinary income.

    Businesses are going to So America, China and India due to WAGE RATES. They are also going there to take advantage of new markets.

    At President Obama's town hall in Mountain View Doug Edwards, former Consumer Marketing Head for Google, now retired millionaire, stood and asked the President to raise his taxes to preserve Pell Grants, education funding and disaster relief, among other things.

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:44 a.m.

    you know where the jobs are, BO chased them offshore with the EPA...' - lost in DC | 10:22 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011

    Is that why we lost over 1 million jobs on Bush's last year Lost?

    Under George Bush:
    In February,2008 63,000 jobs were lost, a five-year record.
    In November 2008, over 500,000 jobs were lost, which marked the largest loss of jobs in the United States in 34 year

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in the last four months of 2008, 1.9 million jobs were lost.

    I enjoy people who 'blame Obama'...

    for things that happened BEFORE he became president.

    I'll keep asking. If the tax cuts were supposed to CREATE jobs, Republican party....

    where, are the jobs?

    Because nothing terrfies the Republican party more.

    Than it's own track record.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:42 a.m.

    And the Tea Party / Republicans protect them.

    I'm about 100% certain, Limbaugh, Hannity and Beck are part of the wonder they tell their lemmings that the Re-Distribution of wealth is wrong.

    If the Rich [let them eat cake] were better policing themselves about paying their workers more, creating jobs, and providing Healthcare...the Government would not feel a need to tax them more.

    The Re-Distribution of Wealth is not happening in the public sector, time for the Government to step in and protect the PEOPLE of the United States.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:42 a.m.

    I'm not rich enough or stupid enough to vote republican.
    Neither are you.

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:40 a.m.

    The richest 10% of Americans pay nearly 70% of all income tax.

    That would be OK


    the richest 10% used 70% of government resources.

    But they dont.' - Chris B | 10:11 a.m. Sept. 27, 2011

    Short memory, Chris.

    *'Bailout is law' - By Jeanne Sahadi - CNN Money - 10/04/08

    '...historic plan to bail out the nation's financial system was signed into law by President Bush on Friday afternoon.'

    *'Bush signs $17.4 billion auto industry bailout package' - By Nelson Ireson - Motor Authority - 12/19/08

    *Bush signs $700 billion bailout bill AP Published by Denver Post By Tom Raum 10/03/08

    WASHINGTON President Bush quickly signed into law a far-reaching $700 billion bill to bail out the nation's tottering financial industry...'

    Continue to try and tell us of the plight of the 'poor little millionare' while America starves.

    'Obama: Wall Street 'Arrogance and Greed' Won't Be Tolerated' - By JOHN HENDREN - 01/31/09

    'President Obama, usually cool, was visibly angry in his weekly address, chastising corporate bankers for the second time this week for accepting taxpayer bailout money and then doling out $18 billion in bonuses.'

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:38 a.m.

    Chris B,

    Your logic is failed because you only think on the small, individual property level. A nation's wealth and resources belong to its people. How those resources are divided up is dependent on a social contract (the by-product of which is government). Starting from a small level, say 7 people work a farm together. They all work equal so they should receive equal, yes? The wealthy are not putting in more hours of work than the poor for the general welfare of our nation's wealth. While there are rich people putting in 80 hr workweeks, there are poor doing the same, and vice versa for lesser workweeks. Our current social contract essentially gives 80% of the food to one worker while letting the other six split the other 20%. Does that sound equitable? There are two ways of remedying the situation: rewrite the social contract (no inheritance [their children didn't work for the nation's prosperity, why should they benefit], land ownership, etc), or we can have those who benefit the most from the social contract (not government programs...the mistake of your logic) pay the most back.

  • xscribe Colorado Springs, CO
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:33 a.m.

    @Chris B: What it really comes down to is whether or not you can afford to pay more in taxes, or whether you feel you need to keep all that extra money. In other words, if you are in the "rich" tax bracket that Obama wants to tax more, are you of the mentality of "I want to help those out who need it more than I because I can afford to pay more"? Or are you of the mentality of, "I need that extra money because I really don't have enough" (money)?

    Some of us feel that we can afford to pay more in taxes to help out those who do not have it as well as we do. Bleeding heart liberal? Maybe so. But better than the alternative, in my opinion!

  • Andy Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:30 a.m.

    I recall an economics professor telling me one cause of the great depression was too much money was concentrated in too few hands. And those who had money could not spend it fast enough to sustain economic growth.

    A second point: I think there are two different fights going on. One is the improper distribution of wealth, the other is the government's role in redistributing that wealth.

    I am very conservative, but it still seems to me the wealth is getting too concentrated in too few hands. Should it be the government's role to redistribute it? Generally I would say no. But I am for a balanced budget and do not oppose new taxes on those who can afford it to bring the budget into balance. I think those taxes should be balanced with spending cuts.

    One point that won't leave my mind is a large contributing factor to the wealth distribution came with the bail-outs. The risk-takers should have lost money in the market correction, but the didn't because the US Government wrote a check to cover the losses. That was the problem. Investors want to privatize gains and socialize losses, which is not fair.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:22 a.m.

    I see nothing in the article nor any of the comments that say how taxing the rich more will help the handy-man raise himself out of the working poor and into the middle class.

    So furry, here it is - all the article does is point out a disparity in wealth, a disparity that apparently is growing. What solution is offered? NONE other than "TAX THE RICH!!" But what does that do to improve the lot of the working poor?

    Without articulating HOW taxing the rich (who are really the only ones being taxed on a federal level now anyway) will improve the lot of the poor or end the income and wealth disparity, the article is nothing but class-bating and class warfare.

    you know where the jobs are, BO chased them offshore with the EPA, Obamacare, and the NLRB. I've told you the numbers many times already, how the number of jobs INCREASED by 8.8 million from 1/01 to 11/07 - none as blind as he who will not see.

  • muncle37 SAINT GEORGE, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:20 a.m.

    As an Income Tax Specialist, I can tell you that the propaganda concerning taxation is at its peak! Capital Gains taxation is a double tax that is hidden. We need Tax Incentives to bring Industries back to America. Instead the crippling taxes are forcing businesses to South America and India in droves.
    Don't believe everything you read, this article had a nice twist that is very deceptive.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:11 a.m.

    The richest 10% of Americans pay nearly 70% of all income tax.

    That would be OK


    the richest 10% used 70% of government resources.

    But they dont.

    For those who think the rich should be paying even more:

    When is the next time you're going shopping?

    Why do I ask?

    I'm going to come with you.

    And if you make more money than me I'm going to tell the cashier to total your

    purchases and mine and then to make you pay for most of my groceries even if

    you only bought a few things.


    Because you make more, so you should pay for what I'm buying.


    When is the next time you're going to buy a car?


    I'm going to come.

    And I'm going to buy a car too and tell the salesman that even if you buy a

    civic and I buy an SUV you are going to pay for your civic and most of my SUV.


    You make more money than me so you should pay for what I buy.

    Makes sense

  • Furry1993 Clearfield, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 10:03 a.m.

    I'm waiting to hear the far right wingers and the tea party enthusiasts complain about THIS class warfare. Oh -- wait -- this class warfare benefits the "haves and have mores". Never mind; no complaints will be forthcoming. This benefits the "big guys", and not the "little guys."

  • FDRfan safety dictates, ID
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:58 a.m.

    Kevin A. Hassett, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, told CBS news it is "immoral" and "unethical" for Democrats to push a "spread the wealth philosophy." "When you put a high top rate in it will cause economic damage, and that income damage will tend to impact people on the bottom end of the income distribution because they're the most vulnerable,"
    The gap is widening. Only 25 years ago, the top 1 percent of the nation controlled 12 percent of the nation's wealth. Today, they control close to 25%

    So according to Hassetts reasoning the people on the bottom should be better off today than 25 years ago. And the Republicans cannot understand why some people dont buy their logic.

  • Mukkake Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:55 a.m.

    But we should tax all equally right? "Why Not Help All", right? And "progressives" are trying to instigate class warfare?

    Face it, not everybody has equal opportunity, and its in the best interest of those on top to keep the rest on bottom.

    The rich don't create jobs, they make money. Sometimes making money makes jobs, sometimes it cuts jobs and builds robots, outsources overseas, or just pays a non living wage because people should just feel fortunate to get whatever job they can take?

    "Work two or three jobs", because you first job hires you as a contractor so they don't have to provide benefits, and the other two are part-time so they don't have to provide benefits. Most employers will just higher more part-time works so that they don't have to provide benefits. And the loophole stays open.

    But we should thank them for all the opportunities they provide.

    "Please sir, I want some more."

    "More? MORE?!"

    The audacity of the lower classes, they have such entitlement.

    And people wonder why the French and Russian revolutions occurred...

  • Pagan Salt Lake City, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:55 a.m.

    Now Thats Rich - By PAUL KRUGMAN - NY Times - 08/22/10

    'Whats at stake here? According to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, making all of the Bush tax cuts permanent, as opposed to following the Obama proposal, would cost the federal government $680 billion in revenue over the next 10 years.'

    Which is still better than:

    "According to the Pew Economic Policy Group, an extension of all of the Bush tax cuts will cost $3.1 trillion over ten years, once the costs of servicing the debt are factored in."

    The Bush tax cuts have been in effect since 2001.

    Where, are the jobs?

  • GuitarGuy Layton, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:52 a.m.

    This is what TeaPublicans want for America. An aristocratic class and a serf class. "Cut all federal welfare spending - that money could be used to subsidize mega corporations" they say. You're getting exactly what you wanted. Happy?

  • Fred44 Salt Lake City, Utah
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:49 a.m.

    After reading this article I can certainly see why the lower income folks need to pay more in taxes and the upper income folks need a tax break. I think we could conclude that the constant cutting of taxes for the wealthy, has not created a trickle down economy (shocking I know) but has created a trickle up economy. I am sure I am missing something or the article or the writer is a biased left wing liberal.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    Sept. 27, 2011 9:47 a.m.

    The rich's victory over the middle class is nearly complete, soon there will be none of us left.

    Unless things change in a major way global class warfare is coming, and it isn't going to be pretty.