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What Happened to America’s Wealth? The Rich Hid It


#1

What Happened to America’s Wealth? The Rich Hid It.

Chuck Collins

If you find yourself traveling this summer, take a closer look at America’s deteriorating infrastructure — our crumbling roads, sidewalks, public parks, and train and bus stations.

Government officials will tell us “there’s no money” to repair or properly maintain our tired infrastructure. Nor do we want to raise taxes, they say.


#2

"Visualize the nation’s wealth as an expansive and deep reservoir of fresh water. A small portion of this water provides sustenance to fields and villages downstream, in the form of tax dollars for public services....In recent years, the water level has declined to a trickle, and the villages below are suffering from water shortages."

Chuck! You have got to propose this great extended simile to a progressive animator or like-minded animation studio - I see a Dr. Seuss-esque animated short allegory going viral on Youtube and being shown in school classrooms as a type of "persuasive argument".

Focused properly, art - whether satire or allegory - can do great things to persuade - i.e., the "mocumentary" of the "Majestic Plastic Bag" assisted by nature documentary narrator Jeremy Irons. Plus cheer us in dark times.


#3

Maybe I just don't get it, but aren't taxes levied when transactions occur? Since this is the case, isn't it too late? Much of the money this article refers to is sitting idle in offshore funds and therefore not subject to taxation. It's not even subject to the tax law of this land.

It is the financialized blood, sweat, and tears of generations of workers and it's just gone. However, crying over spilt milk is backwards looking and counterproductive to the building of a new future. Begging the robber to return what they took is weak and foolhardy. I dare say that this so-called group that is devoted to asking millionaires to please return their money is merely engaging in a rather elaborate publicity stunt for the PR benefit of their rich patrons.

So, unless the author is proposing we rob the robbers, I doubt we have much recourse in this matter. At this point, the reason the wealthy are sequestering their wealth from the economy is because capitalism works based on the principle of scarcity. Less money in the economy not only makes for less taxable revenue, but it also increases the value of the base currency.

There is no incentive for the wealthy to reinvest their wealth in the economy for the basic reason that it would only serve to devalue their holdings when inflation takes off as a result. Plus they would then have to pay transactional tax. This really points to the underlying sickness of the economy as the real problem no one has a solution for.

How about let's focus on building momentum behind the building of a green energy infrastructure? This would create a foundation for a new economic prosperity. This could be the alternative to a continued focus on reparations. The rich can spend their idle time plundering the past at their leisure. We the people can take the more creative approach.


#4

The Rich Hid it?
No they did not.
The government, comprised of ideological gutter snipes gave it to them for a fraction of a piece of the pie. Here, keep 130 million. Can I get a couple?

Since 1979, those making an annual salary in the millions have been systemically allowed to keep more of their wealth, with increases of this amount every few years.

The monies collected annually for the purpose of State and National revenue has simply become a cookie jar for the greedy to tap into.

As long as you have a sugar daddy that gives you a government contract, you will have guaranteed income.

The rest of us can jump off a cliff.


#5

Subhed sez: "The wealthy just don't want you to know where it is"

Psst ... check out Raygun's casket.


#6

That's just SALES TAXES, Sam – which IMHO should also be applied to stock & bond transactions on a slid- ing scale inversely proportional to the length of time a stock or bond has been held so as to discourage spec- ulation: say a 5% sales tax on stock held less than one day, 4% on stock held less than a week, 3% on stock held less than a month, 2% on stock held less than a year, and 1% on all sales of stocks or bonds held for a year or more.  Use these Federal taxes to pay off the National Debt, and once that's done then use it to fund Social Security and Medicare for All so they'd be solvent FOREVER.

As for Income Taxes, Return to Eisenhower-Era Pro$perity – Return to Eisenhower-Era Tax Rate$!!

And DOUBLE or TRIPLE the so-called 'Death Tax' – Inheritance taxes paid by only the wealthiest 1% (or
fewer?) of the nations greediest Fat Cats.

Of course I realize that the likelihood of ANY of the above EVER coming to pass is about as likely as finding
an honest man on Wall Street, N.Y., N.Y., or anywhere in Washington, D.C.


#7

Some states have no state income tax while other states have no sales or excise taxes. The superwealthy can pick and choose where they and their corporations reside and how they and their corporations "recognize" (IRS lingo) income, transactions, etc.

Its no wonder so many corporations are incorporated in Delaware and sales tax free Oregon has the highest per capita number of yacht and private aircraft registrations,


#8

But this country is a meritocracy.

Thus, the rich merit the right to hire legal teams to help them write and skirt tax laws, and the poor merit their status as lowly afterthoughts.

The common good? That's for socialists and DFHs.


#9

If us poor and middle classes get hungry when the food runs out, we can always eat the Rich.

Most of them are nice and plump.


#10

Tax the rich!


#11

My phraseology was probably poorly chosen. I should have said, in general, taxes are levied when money changes hands. Money that is not flowing through the economy is not taxed as a general rule except for such taxes as inheritance tax, capital gains tax, and probably others as well, but even these taxes are usually applied on a transaction by transaction basis. I'm not a tax lawyer, so am not versed in the legal definitions or terminology of what makes a tax a tax.

Your tax on speculation idea is a good one - at least for as long as Wall Street remains relevant.


#12

Wouldn't that be an ironic twist to Soylent Green.


#13

"Much of the money this article refers to is sitting idle in offshore funds and therefore not subject to taxation. It's not even subject to the tax law of this land....Begging the robber to return what they took is weak and foolhardy."

Well...sounds like it's no one's field here...but isn't it a question of whether offshoring etc. were acts of tax evasion that can be prosecuted, entailing fines and retroactive payment of taxes?

Question of whether the money got there through legal loopholes favoring rich - recalling a congressional panel comment on the S and L disaster: what was shocking was not what laws had been broken, but what was legal...


#14

The only way to tax corporations is by taxing their gross not net income. Otherwise billions wasted reducing the net to zero. Return to FDRs tax rates and adjust the inequality with a ten year wealth tax.


#15

After thinking a bit more about eating those who are most corrupt and unethical, a meal of them might better be labeled, 'Poisoned Grief' or 'Sickly Scream'.


#16

We're not talking about history,
We are talking about an ongoing process that needs to stop.


#17

How did you post this? Could it be placed in a local html page working on plastic control?


#18

Corporate offshoring of profits - legal tax evasion. Yes, this is one of those infamous corporate tax loopholes.

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' legislative solution is change "deferral" tax rules:

"[E]nd 'deferral,' that is, repea[l] the rule that indefinitely exempts offshore profits from U.S. income tax until these profits are repatriated. Ending deferral would mean that all profits of U.S. corporations, whether they are generated in the U.S. or abroad, would be taxed by the United States in the year they are earned." (lost link, sorry)


#19

"How did you post this?"

Pasted the link into post...

"Could it be placed in a local html page working on plastic control?"

I don't see why not...


#20

Oh, PonyBoy, don't dine on that
Tweetle-Dumb is much too fat
WAY too much cholesterol –
Enough to kill us, one and all . . .