Demanding tax increases on the rich is back in fashion – both in the corridors of the House of Representatives and on the red carpet of the Met Gala. The House Ways and Means Committee outlined plans on Sept. 13, 2021, to move the top marginal income rate up a couple of notches to 39.6% and to introduce a 3% surtax on incomes above $5 million. That proposal would fall short of calls to really “tax the rich,” as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s dress demanded at a glitzy New York bash just hours later. Tax policy is deemed progressive if the chunk of income taken increases with the income of the individual – so wealthy Americans would pay a larger proportion of their income than poorer ones. With a regressive tax policy, lower earners pay a larger percentage of their earnings in tax than wealthier ones.
Large tax cuts for the rich don't lead to economic growth and employment but instead cause higher income inequality, a new study that examined tax cuts over 50 years suggested. A recent paper by David Hope of the London School of Economics and Julian Limberg of King's College London found that tax cuts for the rich in 18 countries predominantly benefited the wealthy. "Our analysis finds strong evidence that cutting taxes on the rich increases income inequality but has no effect on growth or unemployment" in the short and long term, the researchers wrote. After major tax cuts for the rich were introduced, the top 1% share of pretax national income increased by almost 1 percentage point, they found.
Marana, AZ - Prop 208, Invest in Ed, passed. A 3.5 percent tax increase will be applied to any individual making more than $250,000 a year or if a household makes more than $500,000 a year. That money will go towards public education. Meagan Brown, a special education teacher at Twin Peaks School in Marana said this additional funding is needed for the state. "Long story short, I just don't want teachers leaving," Brown said. It takes a special person to be a teacher. Brown said she's been doing it for a while.
In a nutshell, our racial dilemma is grounded in a political, economic, and identity-based devaluing of Black lives that has persisted ever since the first enslaved African arrived in Jamestown in 1619. The ensuing history of the United States is built on both racial and economic injustice, two related but distinct problems. These racial and economic injustices, while entrenched, can be addressed. Below are three complementary policies that can make meaningful progress toward undoing centuries of systemic inequities, while prospectively ensuring capital access going forward: (1) Reparations through which the nation acknowledges and redresses its exploitation and extraction of Black resources and personhood; (2) Baby Bonds (publicly funded trust accounts) to establish a birthright to capital; and (3) a wealth tax to break up the concentration of wealth among the capitalist elite and diffuse the political power that goes along with such concentration.
Changes in tax policy since 1980 have been driving U.S. inequality to levels not seen since the original Gilded Age. Reversing that trajectory — and restoring a more egalitarian society — will require a complete overhaul of the changes in tax policy we’ve seen over the past four decades. Taxes as a share of national income have now been remarkably stable for 40 years. Total federal tax revenue last year stood at 17 percent, about the average for the last half-century. Income taxes, meanwhile, have stayed steady at 8 percent of the economy. According to Saez and Zucman, a 10 percent tax rate on wealth in excess of $1 billion would have, if begun in 1982, kept the Forbes 400 share of the nation’s wealth at its 1982 level of 1 percent. We can’t turn the clock back to 1982. But we can take serious steps to undo the inequality damage we’ve experienced since then. Our suggestion: Let’s add a third tier to Senator Warren’s proposal. On wealth in excess of $5 billion, let’s now impose a 10 percent tax.
A direct federal tax on wealth, as described in a January report from ITEP and proposed by Sen. Elizabeth Warren, could raise substantial revenue to make public investments, curb rising inequality, and is supported by a large majority of Americans. But would it work? Recent research highlighted in a new academic paper outlines approaches that would make it easier than you might think. At the outset, it is helpful to remember why we need a federal wealth tax and what the challenges are in implementing one. The nation’s income tax by itself fails to place a sufficient constraint on growing economic inequality. Our income tax simply does not tax all types of income that wealthy people have.