Closing the wealth gap

28,500 Views | 526 Replies | Last: 9 mo ago by DiabloWags
wifeisafurd
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Unit2Sucks said:


And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I'm afraid that the last sentence is accurate. But there was a very good post by DiabloWags regarding the wealth tax versus the estate tax, that bears reviewing. This poster obviously has background in the area. At the risk of being repetitive, the problem is not taxation per se, but the ability to pass on wealth to future generations. Capitalists argue that a capitalist society is fair because you gain the rewards of your hard work. But, often people are rich, simply because they inherit wealth or are born into a privileged class, and that privilege prevents social mobility and other things we desire in a capitalistic society. So talking about things like estate taxes and changing tax basis would, in my opinion, have substantial benefit. Again, take a closer look at Diablo's post.
wifeisafurd
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concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !


Tom, in your case it is a matter of you not being able to keep up


As I said before:

"I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others."
Some boundaries please. I made the mistake of begin overt in one charitable thing for Cal, and was rewarded with identity fraud, people emailing me to have a coach fired, and on and on. Just not going there anymore.
dajo9
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Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes). Now compare that to the problem the Greatest Generation had with dynastic wealth from the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt's, the Mellon's, the Hearst's, the Carnegie's, etc. Fortunes were still made in the mid-20th century but it was more limited. Today, we are back to the old days.

There are a lot of reasons why the old remedies likely wouldn't work today (some would help, like stronger anti-trust and financial regulation). That is why I have consistently over the years on these boards supported a wealth tax to resolve the issue of wealth inequality, despite some imaginations around here. Sure, I'd roll back Trump tax cuts for high income earners, but that is playing at the margins. We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.

You won't see me debating the particulars of tax laws with wiaf for the same reason you don't see me debating vaccine science or debating football strategy. I wouldn't debate defensive strategies with Sonny Dykes, I just knew he was ineffective and I wanted him fired. I look at wiaf as a coach that is ineffective and should be fired. If I were President, I would assemble a team of CPA's, lawyers, and financiers who wanted to fix the problem to resolve the particulars of a wealth tax. Wiaf would not be on the team.

What I know is that investing and profits and taxes are all human constructs. This isn't like vaccines where we have to play within the rules of science. We just have to have the will. Our grandparents had the will and they didn't listen to the people who told them it was impossible.
DiabloWags
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wifeisafurd said:

Unit2Sucks said:


And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I'm afraid that the last sentence is accurate. But there was a very good post by DiabloWags regarding the wealth tax versus the estate tax, that bears reviewing. This poster obviously has background in the area. At the risk of being repetitive, the problem is not taxation per se, but the ability to pass on wealth to future generations. Capitalists argue that a capitalist society is fair because you gain the rewards of your hard work. But, often people are rich, simply because they inherit wealth or are born into a privileged class, and that privilege prevents social mobility and other things we desire in a capitalistic society. So talking about things like estate taxes and changing tax basis would, in my opinion, have substantial benefit. Again, take a closer look at Diablo's post.

I mentioned the Grantor's Annuity Trust over the weekend.
But for some reason, no one bothered to educate themselves.

The Grantor's Annuity Trust allows assets to be passed on . . . tax free.
People like Phil Knight are poster child's for using the Grantor's Annuity Trust.

How American Billionaires Like Phil Knight Pass Wealth to Heirs Tax-Free (bloomberg.com)


DiabloWags
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dajo9 said:


We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.


Like most socialists, Senator Warren is enamored with class warfare and wealth distribution. Much of her political career has been predicated on vilifying productive Americans while nurturing a sense of victimhood among her followers.

Interestingly enough, her colleagues like Bernie Sanders own 3 houses and write books making themselves millionaires; but are critical of someone making the same amount of money by starting a business, hiring people and creating jobs for others and creating income for other people while taking on the RISK of starting a business. And yet, if you look at his financial statements which he released while running for office, the money that Sanders gives to charity is far less than a good portion of the country and dramatically less than a large number of other people with his wealth. Another socialist, executive director of BLM Patrisse Cullora had to resign amid controversy surrounding revelations that she leads a lavish lifestyle, owns 4 properties, including a $1.4 million house in Malibu and a ranch in Georgia.

I wonder what Karl Marx would think of the two most visible "socialists/Marxists" in America being multi-millionaires?




bearister
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Everyone that is against tRump is a Leftist.

Any suggestion of gun control equates to "the government intends to take all our guns away."

Any suggestion that something can be done to make income and wealth distribution trends more equitable is a socialist/communist.

I'm not knowledgeable in the area tax, so I certainly can't engage in balloon animal word smithing on the subject, but nonetheless, I'm thinking there has to be whole lot of livable real estate between the two extremes.
Cancel my subscription to the Resurrection
Send my credentials to the House of Detention
I got some friends inside
Unit2Sucks
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dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes).


I bet your grandfather paid a lower percentage of his income in tax than you did because, as WIAF mentioned, nobody really paid those rates. Look at tax revenues as a percentage of GDP over time - it wasn't higher back then. Do you think they had less wealth inequality because there was less government spending?

Or perhaps there is no relation. Reality is that the change in wealth inequality has nothing to do with changes to tax policy and everything to do with changes in the economy.
dajo9
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Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes).


Quote:

I bet your grandfather paid a lower percentage of his income in tax than you did because, as WIAF mentioned, nobody really paid those rates.
Maybe, I have no idea. Confiscatory income tax rates had the added benefit of owners not paying themselves as much as possible. Maybe if you are in a partnership, as my Grandfather was, you decide to pay staff more, since you wouldn't be able to keep the money yourself. I don't know as I wasn't around for discussions like that (and I'm not advocating for confiscatory income tax rates today).


Quote:

Or perhaps there is no relation. Reality is that the change in wealth inequality has nothing to do with changes to tax policy and everything to do with changes in the economy.
I just disagree with that. Though there is one more change that I left out in my previous post - labor power. Which is more difficult today but I think can be matched with voting power, if people have the will for it.

It seems it would be a striking coincidence that the one time our government set out to reduce wealth inequality, it was achieved through completely unrelated changes in the economy. I also think it would be a tragedy to just give up without trying because experts who benefit from the current system say it is impossible.
82gradDLSdad
How long do you want to ignore this user?
dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes). Now compare that to the problem the Greatest Generation had with dynastic wealth from the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt's, the Mellon's, the Hearst's, the Carnegie's, etc. Fortunes were still made in the mid-20th century but it was more limited. Today, we are back to the old days.

There are a lot of reasons why the old remedies likely wouldn't work today (some would help, like stronger anti-trust and financial regulation). That is why I have consistently over the years on these boards supported a wealth tax to resolve the issue of wealth inequality, despite some imaginations around here. Sure, I'd roll back Trump tax cuts for high income earners, but that is playing at the margins. We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.

You won't see me debating the particulars of tax laws with wiaf for the same reason you don't see me debating vaccine science or debating football strategy. I wouldn't debate defensive strategies with Sonny Dykes, I just knew he was ineffective and I wanted him fired. I look at wiaf as a coach that is ineffective and should be fired. If I were President, I would assemble a team of CPA's, lawyers, and financiers who wanted to fix the problem to resolve the particulars of a wealth tax. Wiaf would not be on the team.

What I know is that investing and profits and taxes are all human constructs. This isn't like vaccines where we have to play within the rules of science. We just have to have the will. Our grandparents had the will and they didn't listen to the people who told them it was impossible.


You, Wiaf, Wags and others have written some wonderful, thought provoking stuff on this thread. You just detailed my c-suite BIL's position on the wealth tax that caused us to get in a heated debate during Xmas vacation up at ONE of his houses in Seattle. We both want similar results, I just think there is something fundamentallt wrong with the wealth tax details, he, like you, just say enough is enough, this is our only solution. I love my BIL so I told him I'd keep mulling it over. Still not convinced but I do appreciate you spelling out your reasoning. And I love the analogies. Love what Waif has written,. Live what wags has written. Wonderful thread.
dajo9
How long do you want to ignore this user?
82gradDLSdad said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes). Now compare that to the problem the Greatest Generation had with dynastic wealth from the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt's, the Mellon's, the Hearst's, the Carnegie's, etc. Fortunes were still made in the mid-20th century but it was more limited. Today, we are back to the old days.

There are a lot of reasons why the old remedies likely wouldn't work today (some would help, like stronger anti-trust and financial regulation). That is why I have consistently over the years on these boards supported a wealth tax to resolve the issue of wealth inequality, despite some imaginations around here. Sure, I'd roll back Trump tax cuts for high income earners, but that is playing at the margins. We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.

You won't see me debating the particulars of tax laws with wiaf for the same reason you don't see me debating vaccine science or debating football strategy. I wouldn't debate defensive strategies with Sonny Dykes, I just knew he was ineffective and I wanted him fired. I look at wiaf as a coach that is ineffective and should be fired. If I were President, I would assemble a team of CPA's, lawyers, and financiers who wanted to fix the problem to resolve the particulars of a wealth tax. Wiaf would not be on the team.

What I know is that investing and profits and taxes are all human constructs. This isn't like vaccines where we have to play within the rules of science. We just have to have the will. Our grandparents had the will and they didn't listen to the people who told them it was impossible.


You, Wiaf, Wags and others have written some wonderful, thought provoking stuff on this thread. You just detailed my c-suite BIL's position on the wealth tax that caused us to get in a heated debate during Xmas vacation up at ONE of his houses in Seattle. We both want similar results, I just think there is something fundamentallt wrong with the wealth tax details, he, like you, just say enough is enough, this is our only solution. I love my BIL so I told him I'd keep mulling it over. Still not convinced but I do appreciate you spelling out your reasoning. And I love the analogies. Love what Waif has written,. Live what wags has written. Wonderful thread.
Thanks 82. I am also more interested in results than methods. I invite you to spell out the particulars of your idea in more detail because I'm just not clear on how it would work even in general terms.
DiabloWags
How long do you want to ignore this user?
bearister said:

Everyone that is against tRump is a Leftist.



Youre terribly mistaken.

I'm not a Leftist . . . and I cant wait for the Orange Crap Stain to pass away.
When he does, I will catch a flight to the East Coast where I can piss on his grave.
After that, I'll spend $20,000 on a wonderful "Celebration of Death" party.
82gradDLSdad
How long do you want to ignore this user?
dajo9 said:

82gradDLSdad said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes). Now compare that to the problem the Greatest Generation had with dynastic wealth from the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt's, the Mellon's, the Hearst's, the Carnegie's, etc. Fortunes were still made in the mid-20th century but it was more limited. Today, we are back to the old days.

There are a lot of reasons why the old remedies likely wouldn't work today (some would help, like stronger anti-trust and financial regulation). That is why I have consistently over the years on these boards supported a wealth tax to resolve the issue of wealth inequality, despite some imaginations around here. Sure, I'd roll back Trump tax cuts for high income earners, but that is playing at the margins. We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.

You won't see me debating the particulars of tax laws with wiaf for the same reason you don't see me debating vaccine science or debating football strategy. I wouldn't debate defensive strategies with Sonny Dykes, I just knew he was ineffective and I wanted him fired. I look at wiaf as a coach that is ineffective and should be fired. If I were President, I would assemble a team of CPA's, lawyers, and financiers who wanted to fix the problem to resolve the particulars of a wealth tax. Wiaf would not be on the team.

What I know is that investing and profits and taxes are all human constructs. This isn't like vaccines where we have to play within the rules of science. We just have to have the will. Our grandparents had the will and they didn't listen to the people who told them it was impossible.


You, Wiaf, Wags and others have written some wonderful, thought provoking stuff on this thread. You just detailed my c-suite BIL's position on the wealth tax that caused us to get in a heated debate during Xmas vacation up at ONE of his houses in Seattle. We both want similar results, I just think there is something fundamentallt wrong with the wealth tax details, he, like you, just say enough is enough, this is our only solution. I love my BIL so I told him I'd keep mulling it over. Still not convinced but I do appreciate you spelling out your reasoning. And I love the analogies. Love what Waif has written,. Live what wags has written. Wonderful thread.
Thanks 82. I am also more interested in results than methods. I invite you to spell out the particulars of your idea in more detail because I'm just not clear on how it would work even in general terms.


I don't have many details on wealth inequality. I do think I'm ready for government to step in with a federal compensation scale that would more equitably divy up corporate profits. I was and am still appalled at how much our upper management took home at AT&T while simultaneously off shoring jobs, capping employee pay and saddling the company with debt that they are still trying to undo. Basically they funneled all the built in profit that the phone company enjoyed to the very poor performing top. Randall Stephenson was making $30,000,000 per year at the end. Absolutely no reason to pay any lifer phone company person that much money. I'm sure he's not alone in the CEO over compensation camp. Like I said, this doesn't address wealth inequality but I really do we think we can help with average workers sharing in their corporations profits.
DiabloWags
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82gradDLSdad said:



You, Wiaf, Wags and others have written some wonderful, thought provoking stuff on this thread. You just detailed my c-suite BIL's position on the wealth tax that caused us to get in a heated debate during Xmas vacation up at ONE of his houses in Seattle. We both want similar results, I just think there is something fundamentallt wrong with the wealth tax details, he, like you, just say enough is enough, this is our only solution. I love my BIL so I told him I'd keep mulling it over. Still not convinced but I do appreciate you spelling out your reasoning. And I love the analogies. Love what Waif has written,. Live what wags has written. Wonderful thread.

As I mentioned at the beginning of last weekend, calculating what wealth is, can be very complicated.
It's far easier said, than done.

So would trying to implement a wealth tax policy, once you specifically identify what wealth is. And dare I mention, that right now the IRS is terribly understaffed and last year was ridiculously late in processing income tax returns, let alone stimulus checks. You'd have to dramatically increase the size of the IRS in order to execute such a policy change.

I would be more of a champion of getting rid of the Grantor's Annuity Trusts that people like Phil Knight and the mega-rich use as vehicles to avoid paying income taxes.

I'm 62.
I've paid my fair share of taxes and there are only 3 left in my family.
When I pass away, my wealth will be distributed to wildlife/environmental concerns.
I dont trust the Govt with redistributing what I worked so hard for all these years.

The last time I checked, our Constitution still uses the word liberty.

concordtom
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wifeisafurd said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !


Tom, in your case it is a matter of you not being able to keep up


As I said before:

"I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others."
Some boundaries please. I made the mistake of begin overt in one charitable thing for Cal, and was rewarded with identity fraud, people emailing me to have a coach fired, and on and on. Just not going there anymore.


I never contacted you, wrote your name or looked you up.
You are simply wife to me, the guy from near Dana point who has commercial real estate interests for lease. All things you've offered up here.
I respect your boundaries and wasn't going there.

My post was trying to draw out of you concern for others less fortunate, since we are discussing wealth disparity.

Wife, I come from a big family with different sides.
My father and step father both achieved great wealth. My stepfather's family has a small philanthropic foundation. My father, on the other hand, has never given much of a damn about others.

I've tried to reconcile the attitudinal differences.

I understand what you're saying about privacy. I'm sorry it turned that way for you. I respect that you gave back to Cal. I'm wanting to hear about other thoughts you have about the communities you deal with.

The Safeway at willow pass road and port Chicago Hwy is full of homeless people at night. This could be a plot of land you own. Where do these people come from? How did they get there? What do we do to keep that from becoming the norm in not just Oakland, San Francisco, and now concord but soon Orinda and Dana Point, too?

It's a macro issue we are talking about here - income and wealth inequality. It's not good enough to be like my father and sit back in self satisfaction of, "I lived a good life because I got mine! Through my own brilliance and hard work, I got mine!"

There is a fallacy somewhere in there. It is rooted in the Horacio Alger mythology - that success is available to anyone and everyone, so long as they merit it - or is that more akin to Ayn Rand?

Obama spoke to it when he said, "YOU did not build that company."

But now, I'm digressing.

I have no idea where you're at with this topic. But I'm reminded of the quote, "it's not how far you went, it's how many you brought with you."

There. Enough for you to psychologically dissect me, instead.
Cheers.
concordtom
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DiabloWags said:

dajo9 said:


We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.


Like most socialists, Senator Warren is enamored with class warfare and wealth distribution. Much of her political career has been predicated on vilifying productive Americans while nurturing a sense of victimhood among her followers.

Interestingly enough, her colleagues like Bernie Sanders own 3 houses and write books making themselves millionaires; but are critical of someone making the same amount of money by starting a business, hiring people and creating jobs for others and creating income for other people while taking on the RISK of starting a business. And yet, if you look at his financial statements which he released while running for office, the money that Sanders gives to charity is far less than a good portion of the country and dramatically less than a large number of other people with his wealth. Another socialist, executive director of BLM Patrisse Cullora had to resign amid controversy surrounding revelations that she leads a lavish lifestyle, owns 4 properties, including a $1.4 million house in Malibu and a ranch in Georgia.

I wonder what Karl Marx would think of the two most visible "socialists/Marxists" in America being multi-millionaires?




I've posted this many times, don't recall anyone responding.

Watch, if nothing else, his talk from minute 7 to 20.

Then let me know what you think about the direction of American society.

Skinny, we've created a flat tax system, and it allows wealth disparity to increase. He proposes one possible solution, which was picked up by Warren.



But I suppose first we should decide on whether we should care about a widening wealth gap. What go you think? I am was always taught that society functions best when there is a strong middle class, poorly when wealth is in the hands of few, as my Latin American studies taught. What say you?
DiabloWags
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concordtom said:




Obama spoke to it when he said, "YOU did not build that company."



Just to provide some context, Barack Obama's quote (above) was largely taken out of context by his critics. And the reason why is because he wasnt reflecting on building a COMPANY.

His actual quote was "Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you didnt build that."

President Obama was clearly speaking to an American system having built roads and bridges.
Not a company.
DiabloWags
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concordtom said:




I've posted this many times, don't recall anyone responding.

Watch, if nothing else, his talk from minute 7 to 20.

Then let me know what you think about the direction of American society.



Tom, what Professor Zucman is explaining is nothing new.

The wealthy dont receive much income in the way of ordinary income.
They receive their money via long term capital gains, which are federally taxed at 20%.
And if you live in California, you can add another 13.3% to that if your gains were over $1.0 million.
This has been mentioned ad nauseam.

Interestingly enough, his chart of income inequality for the Top 1% vs Bottom 50% appears to intersect in 1994 (and I would argue) it coincides with the beginning of the computer and the birth of the Digital Age.

I dont think that there is any surprise that uneducated "laborers" who largely make up the Bottom 50%, have not been able to participate in the strong capital gains that the Top 1% have enjoyed.

I would also argue that the current playbook of the FED also plays in favor of the rich.
Anytime there is the threat of an economic contraction, the FED injects liquidity and sends rates to zero.
This monetary response obviously benefits the wealthier classes given their ability to deploy cash into the markets.

This is why Congress sent out actual "stimulus" checks to individuals during the Pandemic.
They learned their lesson from 2008-2009 where no direct stimulus to individuals occurred.

The $475 Billion TARP only dealt with purchasing toxic assets and equity from financial institutions.
But to this day, socialists like Bernie Sanders still use this as their battle cry.
wifeisafurd
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82gradDLSdad said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

dajo9 said:

wifeisafurd said:

dajo9 said:

Unit2Sucks said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !

I know the tactic well. It doesn't reflect well on you or your class, so just muck it up and don't answer to it.

I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others.

Go ahead, brag a little. It's allowed, for a good cause! As we've seen.
I think the point he might be making is that the composition of the people in the 1% changes over time. I bet if you check around on BI, most 1%ers are the first in their families to attain that status. Of course that's not the case everywhere but it's worth considering. You can't blame Zuckerberg for the Dubya Bush tax cuts, for example. Can you blame every first generation entrepreneur for wealth inequality when their parents often came over with just the clothes on their back and a dream?

We can take an informal poll. Who here is in a higher tax bracket than their parents? Who here has a net worth larger than their parents? Anyone 10x? 100x?

I've been in a higher tax bracket than my parents every year since I entered the workforce. My net worth exceeds theirs, although not by 10x yet. If you disregard real estate, I'm 10x but not 100x.

I have a number of friends who are well over 10x their parents' net worth and some probably 100x. I read these articles about how the wealth held by the 1% has grown over time, it always makes me wonder what the authors think about people like that.


There are some problems with your argument. First, inflation skews these intergenerational numbers badly. For example, sometime around 1970, my grandfather (Stanford grad) earned around $50k. Hard data is hard to find but I think that put him near the 1%, if not in it. But his wealth was not transformational (I never saw a dime). My grandfather's income put him in a 50% federal income tax bracket at the time - higher than me. Higher than everybody today.

The big problem with what you are saying is that being in the 1% all by itself is not an issue. The issue is the current 1% is so much more wealthy than prior generation 1%'s largely because of tax policy. Today we have transformational, intergenerational wealth. Democracy threatening wealth.


Also, the question unit2 asked was what bracket people are in compared to previous generations. That is a question about marginal tax rates.

So much typing by you for nothing.
I think your response is a bit evasive. My point is that most wealthy people (eg 1%ers) are self-made so when we make these decade long comparisons, it creates the inaccurate impression that there is far more continuity among that class than their actually is. Comparing marginal rates is irrelevant to this conversation. For the most part if you aren't in the top federal bracket, you aren't that wealthy. If you are so wealthy that you don't pay any taxes, lol, then it's pretty obvious and the children are less likely to surpass their parents (although I still know some of those outcomes as well).

With few obvious exceptions, people aren't creating true intergenerational wealth (9 figure net worth) by making a nice salary. They're doing it through the value of equity and always have been. They pay capital gains taxes (or none at all) but they don't pay income tax. WIAF spoke to that so I won't belabor it.

I think inflation is largely irrelevant to the discussion of wealth accumulation in the past 4 decades because asset inflation has exceeded "inflation" over the period. Boomers have tons of money and haven't been harmed by inflation.

And just want to +1 to everything WIAF said above about taxes. Not everyone might agree with his commentary (I generally do on tax), but he knows what he's talking about as an experienced practitioner. I think people generally have an understand that there are a lot of different ways people can legally avoid creating taxable income, but they don't really understand how it works or how ill-equipped our government is to address it. Making small tweaks to the tax code and focusing on income tax will never really address the problem of wealth inequality.
I think it's pretty rich for you to call me evasive for answering a question of yours. You're the one that asked about our family personal marginal tax brackets and when I respond you say it's irrelevant. OK. Thanks for asking an irrelevant question, I guess.

I spent more time writing about wealth and it's corrosive effects than I did on income, but for some reason you and wiaf are hyperfocused on what I said about income. You are both also imagining things I never said. I can't help you both with that problem, except I have gone back and edited my post with "headers" to make it easier for the both of you to follow along.

More substantively, America had a problem with massive wealth inequalities before and the Greatest Generation largely resolved the problem through a combination of ~50% top corporate income tax rates, ~90% top income tax rates, strong anti-trust action, and strong financial regulation. It worked for that time - see what I wrote in my prior post comparing Howard Hughes (the wealthiest American of the era) to Jeff Yass (some unknown investor and political player of this era with equivalent wealth to Howard Hughes). Now compare that to the problem the Greatest Generation had with dynastic wealth from the Rockefellers, the Vanderbilt's, the Mellon's, the Hearst's, the Carnegie's, etc. Fortunes were still made in the mid-20th century but it was more limited. Today, we are back to the old days.

There are a lot of reasons why the old remedies likely wouldn't work today (some would help, like stronger anti-trust and financial regulation). That is why I have consistently over the years on these boards supported a wealth tax to resolve the issue of wealth inequality, despite some imaginations around here. Sure, I'd roll back Trump tax cuts for high income earners, but that is playing at the margins. We need a wealth tax. If that is a revelation for you, then you haven't been reading me clearly. I mean, I'm probably the only person on these boards who supported Elizabeth Warren for President.

You won't see me debating the particulars of tax laws with wiaf for the same reason you don't see me debating vaccine science or debating football strategy. I wouldn't debate defensive strategies with Sonny Dykes, I just knew he was ineffective and I wanted him fired. I look at wiaf as a coach that is ineffective and should be fired. If I were President, I would assemble a team of CPA's, lawyers, and financiers who wanted to fix the problem to resolve the particulars of a wealth tax. Wiaf would not be on the team.

What I know is that investing and profits and taxes are all human constructs. This isn't like vaccines where we have to play within the rules of science. We just have to have the will. Our grandparents had the will and they didn't listen to the people who told them it was impossible.


You, Wiaf, Wags and others have written some wonderful, thought provoking stuff on this thread. You just detailed my c-suite BIL's position on the wealth tax that caused us to get in a heated debate during Xmas vacation up at ONE of his houses in Seattle. We both want similar results, I just think there is something fundamentallt wrong with the wealth tax details, he, like you, just say enough is enough, this is our only solution. I love my BIL so I told him I'd keep mulling it over. Still not convinced but I do appreciate you spelling out your reasoning. And I love the analogies. Love what Waif has written,. Live what wags has written. Wonderful thread.
What I keep wondering is why things that we say like dealing with generational wealth being passed on doesn't get any traction either here or anywhere else. Biden gave it some lip service, but it wasn't what went to Congress. Bearister talked about some middle field, well here it is. Just not allowing a step up basis would be huge. A Democratic Congress could impose meaningful estate taxes and eliminate devises to avoid the estate tax tomorrow and we would have a President that presumably sign the legislation. And there would be no legal challenges or the rest of the structural issues we have with the wealth tax. That they don't tells me the Dems don't want to offend their large donors. I pick on the Dems only because they have the power right now to do this. It seems all everyone wants to discuss is a wealth tax, which is not even on the political radar in terms of being passed. It probably also is illegal, and so fundamentally flawed in terms of practicality, that essentially no one in the world has a wealth tax.
DiabloWags
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wifeisafurd said:



A Democratic Congress could impose meaningful estate taxes and eliminate devises to avoid the estate tax tomorrow and we would have a President that presumably sign the legislation. And there would be no legal challenges or the rest of the structural issues we have with the wealth tax. That they don't tells me the Dems don't want to offend their large donors.

Not just their large donors.... but themselves as well.

To further prove your point, the HOUSE (where the Dems have a majority) didnt even have a proposal to eliminate the step-up in basis when it passed it's version in support of Build Back Better on Nov. 19th.
DiabloWags
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Moreover, for those of you that didnt follow this stuff all that closely when it came to the proposals being offered to fund Build Back Better . . . it's interesting to note that on October 27th, Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden of Oregon unveiled an updated version of the Billionaire Tax.

ON THE SAME DAY, the Chair of the (tax writing) House Ways and Means Committee, Richard Neal of Maryland said that he had told Senator Wyden that a Billionaire's Tax was off the table.

It's highly possible that Chairman Neal felt that such a wealth tax was probably illegal.

The Constitution says Congress can only impose "direct taxes" that are "apportioned among the several states" according to population. Although the 16th Amendment gave Congress the power to tax "incomes from whatever source derived" . . . it's clear that unrealized capital gains arent income.


wifeisafurd
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DiabloWags said:

wifeisafurd said:



A Democratic Congress could impose meaningful estate taxes and eliminate devises to avoid the estate tax tomorrow and we would have a President that presumably sign the legislation. And there would be no legal challenges or the rest of the structural issues we have with the wealth tax. That they don't tells me the Dems don't want to offend their large donors.

Not just their large donors.... but themselves as well.

To further prove your point, the HOUSE (where the Dems have a majority) didnt even have a proposal to eliminate the step-up in basis when it passed it's version in support of Build Back Better on Nov. 19th.

Okay, point taken.
concordtom
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DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:




Obama spoke to it when he said, "YOU did not build that company."



Just to provide some context, Barack Obama's quote (above) was largely taken out of context by his critics. And the reason why is because he wasnt reflecting on building a COMPANY.

His actual quote was "Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you've got a business, you didnt build that."

President Obama was clearly speaking to an American system having built roads and bridges.
Not a company.

Okay, I accept the clarification. You're saying that his sentence would have made more sense if he had said, "you didn't build that road or that bridge, which your business uses to get it's job done."

His point was made to me. Society educates children, who become the workforce. Let's invest in education. A rising tide lifts all boats, including the 1%'s.
concordtom
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DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:




I've posted this many times, don't recall anyone responding.

Watch, if nothing else, his talk from minute 7 to 20.

Then let me know what you think about the direction of American society.



Tom, what Professor Zucman is explaining is nothing new.

The wealthy dont receive much income in the way of ordinary income.
They receive their money via long term capital gains, which are federally taxed at 20%.
And if you live in California, you can add another 13.3% to that if your gains were over $1.0 million.
This has been mentioned ad nauseam.

Interestingly enough, his chart of income inequality for the Top 1% vs Bottom 50% appears to intersect in 1994 (and I would argue) it coincides with the beginning of the computer and the birth of the Digital Age.

I dont think that there is any surprise that uneducated "laborers" who largely make up the Bottom 50%, have not been able to participate in the strong capital gains that the Top 1% have enjoyed.

I would also argue that the current playbook of the FED also plays in favor of the rich.
Anytime there is the threat of an economic contraction, the FED injects liquidity and sends rates to zero.
This monetary response obviously benefits the wealthier classes given their ability to deploy cash into the markets.

This is why Congress sent out actual "stimulus" checks to individuals during the Pandemic.
They learned their lesson from 2008-2009 where no direct stimulus to individuals occurred.

The $475 Billion TARP only dealt with purchasing toxic assets and equity from financial institutions.
But to this day, socialists like Bernie Sanders still use this as their battle cry.

It's been a couple years since I watched it (and a number of other similar talks), and my takeaway was that he have rolled out such a huge number of Use Taxes or other TYPES of taxes that when combined with the incredibly shrinking income tax rate (was 90% under Ike), we end up with a Flat Tax, rather than the typically prescribed and commonly presumed PROGRESSIVE tax system - that is, one where those who make more or have more actually PAY more.

The USA does not, effectively, have a progressive tax system, and that is the apparent problem which helps to widen the wealth gap.

You asked rhetorically last week, "Why should the government tax me again when I die?"
Well, because you don't vote anymore when you die.

Perhaps if you voted to tax yourself more now, you wouldn't have to pay when you die.
DiabloWags
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concordtom said:






The USA does not, effectively, have a progressive tax system, and that is the apparent problem which helps to widen the wealth gap.

You asked rhetorically last week, "Why should the government tax me again when I die?"
Well, because you don't vote anymore when you die.

Perhaps if you voted to tax yourself more now, you wouldn't have to pay when you die.

Do I have to remind you that the California State Income Tax is highly progressive?

Are you aware that capital gains income is taxed as ordinary income at the state level?


DiabloWags
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concordtom said:

DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:



You asked rhetorically last week, "Why should the government tax me again when I die?"

Well, because you don't vote anymore when you die.

Perhaps if you voted to tax yourself more now, you wouldn't have to pay when you die.

So given your logic, because I am no longer able to vote when I pass away, the GOVT has more priority to my assets than my Family Members?


Unit2Sucks
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dajo9 said:


Quote:

I bet your grandfather paid a lower percentage of his income in tax than you did because, as WIAF mentioned, nobody really paid those rates.
Maybe, I have no idea. Confiscatory income tax rates had the added benefit of owners not paying themselves as much as possible. Maybe if you are in a partnership, as my Grandfather was, you decide to pay staff more, since you wouldn't be able to keep the money yourself. I don't know as I wasn't around for discussions like that (and I'm not advocating for confiscatory income tax rates today).


Quote:

Or perhaps there is no relation. Reality is that the change in wealth inequality has nothing to do with changes to tax policy and everything to do with changes in the economy.
I just disagree with that. Though there is one more change that I left out in my previous post - labor power. Which is more difficult today but I think can be matched with voting power, if people have the will for it.

It seems it would be a striking coincidence that the one time our government set out to reduce wealth inequality, it was achieved through completely unrelated changes in the economy. I also think it would be a tragedy to just give up without trying because experts who benefit from the current system say it is impossible.
If your grandfather had a partnership, he likely paid almost no taxes in the 70's.

As for tax policy influencing wealth inequality, as I mentioned earlier, taxes as a percentage of GDP hasn't changed much (it fluctuates year to year of course) since the confiscatory tax rates that no one paid. If you look at the tax distribution, it's far more heavily skewed toward high income earners now than it was back then so hard to imagine how the change in income tax rates exacerbated wealth inequality.

As for the issue WIAF brought up about inheritance taxex and the points about the house not addressing the step up in basis, those things are closely related. My sense is that the problem is that if you get rid of the step up, you can't also have an inheritance tax. Figuring out how to fit those things together given all the loopholes (GRAT is one, but there are others like BDITs) was likely too much to take on with BBB.
DiabloWags
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Unit2Sucks said:




As for tax policy influencing wealth inequality, as I mentioned earlier, taxes as a percentage of GDP hasn't changed much (it fluctuates year to year of course) since the confiscatory tax rates that no one paid. If you look at the tax distribution, it's far more heavily skewed toward high income earners now than it was back then so hard to imagine how the change in income tax rates exacerbated wealth inequality.

As for the issue WIAF brought up about inheritance taxex and the points about the house not addressing the step up in basis, those things are closely related. My sense is that the problem is that if you get rid of the step up, you can't also have an inheritance tax. Figuring out how to fit those things together given all the loopholes (GRAT is one, but there are others like BDITs) was likely too much to take on with BBB.

I think that you just hit the nail on the head Unit2.

If you do away with the step-up (which essentially accounts for inflation), you have to remove the inheritance tax otherwise the implications would be terribly onerous.

As it was, the proposals by Bernie Sanders (Chair of the Senate Budget Committee) were to not only to essentially double the LT capital gains tax (treating it as ordinary income), but also remove the step-up in basis, AND leave in place the inheritance tax, if not accelerating the sunset of the Trump Tax Reform Act and lowering the threshold down to $5.0 million + inflation.

Remember, none of this had anything to do with trying to close the Wealth Gap.
They were proposals designed to help pay for Build Back Better.
wifeisafurd
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concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

concordtom said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

10 years later, the disparity is much worse:

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1% | Vanity Fair


https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2011/05/top-one-percent-201105

"The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."
And the numbers are total bullcrap. Tell me counselor:

How is total wealth for the US determined?

How is who is in the top 1% determined? Did you have Ms. Jenner on your list?

How is the total amount of wealth of the top 1% determined?

The problem is that there are no real sources. The IRS keeps records on taxable income limited amounts of non-taxable income. It didn't even keep track on non-taxable income years ago. I don't know if the numbers are to conservative or overstate the problem, just that the numbers you quote don't really exist in any data base.




Typical Fox retort.
Just muddy it up, change the subject, don't address the point of the claim by arguing that the data is bad.
Barf !


Tom, in your case it is a matter of you not being able to keep up


As I said before:

"I'd be more impressed if you added to discussion by sharing thoughts or projects designed to help others."
Some boundaries please. I made the mistake of begin overt in one charitable thing for Cal, and was rewarded with identity fraud, people emailing me to have a coach fired, and on and on. Just not going there anymore.


I never contacted you, wrote your name or looked you up.
You are simply wife to me, the guy from near Dana point who has commercial real estate interests for lease. All things you've offered up here.
I respect your boundaries and wasn't going there.

My post was trying to draw out of you concern for others less fortunate, since we are discussing wealth disparity.

Wife, I come from a big family with different sides.
My father and step father both achieved great wealth. My stepfather's family has a small philanthropic foundation. My father, on the other hand, has never given much of a damn about others.

I've tried to reconcile the attitudinal differences.

I understand what you're saying about privacy. I'm sorry it turned that way for you. I respect that you gave back to Cal. I'm wanting to hear about other thoughts you have about the communities you deal with.

The Safeway at willow pass road and port Chicago Hwy is full of homeless people at night. This could be a plot of land you own. Where do these people come from? How did they get there? What do we do to keep that from becoming the norm in not just Oakland, San Francisco, and now concord but soon Orinda and Dana Point, too?

It's a macro issue we are talking about here - income and wealth inequality. It's not good enough to be like my father and sit back in self satisfaction of, "I lived a good life because I got mine! Through my own brilliance and hard work, I got mine!"

There is a fallacy somewhere in there. It is rooted in the Horacio Alger mythology - that success is available to anyone and everyone, so long as they merit it - or is that more akin to Ayn Rand?

Obama spoke to it when he said, "YOU did not build that company."

But now, I'm digressing.

I have no idea where you're at with this topic. But I'm reminded of the quote, "it's not how far you went, it's how many you brought with you."

There. Enough for you to psychologically dissect me, instead.
Cheers.
I'm not going into what we give non-profits, other than they are not think tanks.

I spent a few years of my life doing a lot of tax-exempt bond financing for low income housing. The federal government, as it is prone to do, changed the rules regarding tenants discouraging development and a large portion of the money raised was never spent. The investment bankers, lawyers, rating agencies, consultants and the like were paid out of the initial proceeds, and I guess the investors have a very secure investment. I also represented governmental agencies on real estate projects, so I suppose I was working for the public good to develop infrastructure projects. But any discussion with me about the homeless in Safeway or anywhere else, tends to add to my frustration of those years.

I suppose given the topic here is on how to finance government, my clients were able to use the ARRA money to do things like additional waste water treatment so that treated water could be put into the supply of public water districts like the MWD that act as wholesalers to consumers. A good thing in drought conditions. I might add (since it is coming) that criticism that projects to be financed by ARRA money didn't happen and the funds have not been spent since the 2009 legislation. The argument is valid to a certain degree. But that is not on the Feds, but state and local governments with land use laws that hold-up development. Just one example for something I was involved, where LA wanted to update its emergency responder system following 911, which to most people would seem a good idea:


Obama's Next Solyndra-Style Scandal Is Called "LA-RICS"https://www.forbes.com richardminiter 2012/02/17

LA County halts overhaul of emergency communications systemhttps://archive.kpcc.org news 2015/03/25 la-count...

But the Federal funding was only a discrete part of representing state or local government. Sometimes it was a simple as getting an easement for a pipe so people could flush their toilets better or receive improved water pressure. Government does important mundane things that people take for granted. It is necessary.

That said, I suppose you are fishing for something on Obama's comments - which were taken out of context, and highly divisive and unnecessary. He could should have just discussed government and business partnerships like most politicians - we want to make sure you can ship your goods over roads we build type of stuff. (He mostly said that if you read his speech). But suggesting " if you've got a business, you didn't build that" (which is not even exactly what he said but was more like you didn't build that on your own) is a road too far, and insulting to good share of the people working in American small business, who tend to think they are making it despite the government. It showed that Obama really had never worked in or understood business, and it hurt hm politically.


But all that is fighting over words and attitude. In the real world, I benefitted from the ARRA or other forms of federal or state fudging, I had clients who benefitted from this funding and the public benefited from what my clients did. In any event I have spent some portion of my life working for private and public clients, and I can look out my window, point to structures, and say I worked on that. Many no growth advocates probably consider my role in life as evil. Government can't please everyone.





wifeisafurd
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DiabloWags said:

Unit2Sucks said:




As for tax policy influencing wealth inequality, as I mentioned earlier, taxes as a percentage of GDP hasn't changed much (it fluctuates year to year of course) since the confiscatory tax rates that no one paid. If you look at the tax distribution, it's far more heavily skewed toward high income earners now than it was back then so hard to imagine how the change in income tax rates exacerbated wealth inequality.

As for the issue WIAF brought up about inheritance taxex and the points about the house not addressing the step up in basis, those things are closely related. My sense is that the problem is that if you get rid of the step up, you can't also have an inheritance tax. Figuring out how to fit those things together given all the loopholes (GRAT is one, but there are others like BDITs) was likely too much to take on with BBB.

I think that you just hit the nail on the head Unit2.

If you do away with the step-up (which essentially accounts for inflation), you have to remove the inheritance tax otherwise the implications would be terribly onerous.

As it was, the proposals by Bernie Sanders (Chair of the Senate Budget Committee) were to not only to essentially double the LT capital gains tax (treating it as ordinary income), but also remove the step-up in basis, AND leave in place the inheritance tax, if not accelerating the sunset of the Trump Tax Reform Act and lowering the threshold down to $5.0 million + inflation.

Remember, none of this had anything to do with trying to close the Wealth Gap.
They were proposals designed to help pay for Build Back Better.

Sure, you can't do no step up on something you tax. Step-up is an alternative to no estate tax. That was my intention. Sorry if that was unclear. There are things you can do right now that might be popular if tried. But then
sure on the latest round of tax increases being designed to pay for BBB, not to address so called "wealth inequality." I see no desire for a wealth tax or anything else coming out of the White House. Uint 2 probably as it right, with the issues with BBB, trying to take on structural changes to taxes like basis adjustments is not prudent.
wifeisafurd
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bearister said:

wifeisafurd said:

bearister said:

Someone has asked me what Joseph Stiglitz' closing paragraph of his essay means:

" The top 1% percent have the best houses, the best educations, the best doctors, and the best lifestyles, but there is one thing that money doesn't seem to have bought: an understanding that their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live. Throughout history, this is something that the top 1 percent eventually do learn. Too late."

I think what he is saying is that wealth disparity leads to this:

Society Is Doomed, Scientists Claim | Live Science


https://www.livescience.com/44171-society-civilization-collapse-study.html


Guess Steglitz was talking about those in the January 6th takeover


No, not that rabble. They are moronic tools that were fighting to keep the King of Tax Cuts for the Rich on the throne and further advance the death grip of the 1%.
Are you sure it is the left who is most dissatisfied? And this is a NPR site with a NPR poll which means 75% percent of the responders are old, highly educated, liberal white women:

CAIiECorxnpDQseCSsFWyxafclUqFwgEKg4IACoGCAow9vBNMK3UCDCFpJYH
concordtom
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DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:

DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:



You asked rhetorically last week, "Why should the government tax me again when I die?"

Well, because you don't vote anymore when you die.

Perhaps if you voted to tax yourself more now, you wouldn't have to pay when you die.

So given your logic, because I am no longer able to vote when I pass away, the GOVT has more priority to my assets than my Family Members?



I'm not saying it should be that way. I don't believe it should.
I'm saying that politicians are afraid to raise taxes because they might get voted out of office.
But dead people don't vote, so....

I was saying they can get away with raising taxes on dead people easier - though they haven't done that either.

All I know is the tax code should be simplified, and I'd like to find a way to improve the middle class. The system is generating huge amounts of wealth, but it's tied up in many cases with long term unrealized gains. I believe in a progressive tax, not a flat tax. I've heard lots of republican talking points by both my fathers who don't want to pay taxes. They arguments are compelling, but the end result is a large wealth gap. That's a problem.
PS: I hope to inherit many millions - but actually doubt I will. It'll all go to Cal and there will be some building with our family name on it. The money is good enough for my dad, but not good enough for his kids. Okay, I jest, we'll see, but tired of waiting. I'll be dead soon!
concordtom
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DiabloWags said:

concordtom said:






The USA does not, effectively, have a progressive tax system, and that is the apparent problem which helps to widen the wealth gap.

You asked rhetorically last week, "Why should the government tax me again when I die?"
Well, because you don't vote anymore when you die.

Perhaps if you voted to tax yourself more now, you wouldn't have to pay when you die.

Do I have to remind you that the California State Income Tax is highly progressive?

Are you aware that capital gains income is taxed as ordinary income at the state level?



Unit2Sucks
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Tom you seem to be missing the point that no one was paying the nominal rates. Here's a chart showing federal tax receipts as a % of GDP for the last 80 years or so.



I will say this again but I don't think that tax policy will solve wealth inequality. Most people seem to be focused on confiscatory policies which will make wealthy people less wealthy but won't make poor people more wealthy. Even if we taxed poor people 0% we wouldn't solve wealth inequality. I'm not sure why people think that making wealthy people poorer will solve our problems but unless we use that confiscation to actually improve the lives of the poor. When I say "poor" I'm using that as shorthand for everyone who isn't wealthy. Growing the economy and improving wages will certainly help improve people's lives but it won't really lead to wealth accumulation for most people.

Here is what I think the real problem is and no one is talking about it. Our economy is based on consumer spend. We are a consumerist culture and it drives the vast majority of our GDP. The powers that be DO NOT WANT people to accumulate wealth, they want them to spend it so we can get that multiplier. We tolerate wealthy people accumulating wealth, but would prefer everyone just spend more. When the real wages of poor people increase, that goes almost entirely to increased spend, which boosts our economy. If it didn't, it wouldn't really create an economic good. So when we talk about wealth inequality, the vast majority of the people just want to make wealthy people less wealthy because there is very little chance that we will ever do anything to increase the wealth of the poor. If we did, it would probably prove fatal to our economy (think Japan with its high savings rates and low GDP growth for decades).

I'm doubtful that tax policy (unless it's in service of true game changers) will solve the problems people think exist.
bearister
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Huge 20-Year Study Shows Trickle-Down Is a Myth, Inequality Rampant


https://www.businessinsider.com/how-bad-is-inequality-trickle-down-economics-thomas-piketty-economists-2021-12

The World InequalityReport 2022 presents the most up-to-date & complete data on inequality worldwide:


https://wir2022.wid.world/
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going4roses
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Wealth gap … between who ?

Demographics?

Class ?

Income?

My concern is the stolen generational wealth/ un paid wages -free labor when is that part going to acknowledged /dealt with /rectified ?
 
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