Tuesday, September 20, 2011

How could you have a "Buffett Tax" without making the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) even more intrusive?

When President Obama says that billionaires (whether Warren Buffett or Mark Zuckerberg) should pay taxes (Income taxes?) at the same rate as their “secretaries”  (ooh, a throwback to the sexist 50s), the first thought that comes to my mind is horrible Alternate Minimum Tax. Yup, HRBlock reminds of it even when I do mine.

I thought that some of the deals floated during this past summer’s debt ceiling “debate” promised to do away with the AMT.

How would you impose the Buffett Tax and not keep or even make worse the AMT? 

The Washington Times, in an oped by Emily Miller, weighs in on the BT (a BLT sandwich?) today , here

I call to mind going to a Libertarian Party symposium in Manassas, VA in May 1996 when Harry Browne said, simply “End the income tax and replace it with nothing.” I remember Irwin Schiff’s carting out his “The Federal Mafia” and recounting his own experiences. 

Seriously, though, I don’t think the “rich” mind paying an Obama-share of their taxes, and I don’t think they hire fewer people when they do.  The Bachmann-Perry arguments really don’t resonate in real life.  It’s more than just distribution of wealth into people who have to spend. We have enormous infrastructure issues to tend to now. Protecting the power grid not just from terrorists but inevitable solar storms is just the opener. 

As for the "Math" vs. "class warfare" question, note that Elizabeth Warren says, "nobody ever got rich on his own."

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