View Single Post
Old 09-02-2019, 09:20 PM
GIGObuster's Avatar
GIGObuster is online now
Charter Member
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Arizona
Posts: 29,256
Originally Posted by Wrenching Spanners View Post
OK, first off, what is a "2% marginal tax on assets"? Is that a 2% tax on the increase in the value of the assets? That's an unrealised capital gains tax, not a wealth tax, although I suppose that's quibbling. Nevertheless, if that's what's being proposed, are there any numbers to back that up? "The richest one-tenth of the richest 1%” raising their assets by 50 times $300 billion a year doesn't pass the smell test.
Oh, and about this, saying insipid things such as not "passing the smell test" are silly when one can find with little effort who else does smell it positively.
Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest person, would have to pay $4.1 billion in the first year under U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren’s soon-to-be proposed wealth tax, based on his current net worth of $137.1 billion.


Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, plans to propose a tax of 2 percent on those with assets of $50 million to $1 billion and 3 percent on all fortunes exceeding $1 billion, the Washington Post reported Thursday. The tax would raise $2.75 trillion over a decade from about 75,000 families, the newspaper said, citing an economist advising Warren on the plan.
As Saez and Zucman observe, “It is not appropriate to assume that a Warren wealth tax would be as poorly enforced as the estate tax currently.” That’s true: A Congress and White House that enacted the wealth tax would make sure that enforcement would be part of the package.

To some extent, the actual revenue numbers being debated by economists are beside the point even if, by the most minimalist figures offered by Summers and Sarin, the wealth tax would bring in a mere $250 billion over 10 years.

The real point is that our tax structure has become a major contributor to wealth inequality in the U.S., as the signatories to the tycoons’ open letter acknowledge.

We’ve relentlessly cut the top marginal rate on the richest Americans and endowed them with exemptions and loopholes that have fostered aristocratic family fortunes utterly alien to the America envisioned by our founding fathers. This trend hasn’t made America richer; it has just contributed to the stagnation of economic opportunity for the 99%.

Warren’s concept is right: It’s time to stop allowing the rich to evade their fair share. The details will be worked out soon enough.