Tuesday, January 15, 2013

These Are The People The Wall Street Journal Thinks We Should Have Sympathy For?

The Wall Street Journal had an article providing a fairly thorough breakdown of the new tax policies that will now be in effect due to the "fiscal cliff" agreement reached by congress. The article itself wasn't too bad, really. In fact, it was mostly an objective piece. However, it did include one little thing that I thought was worth highlighting, and that was the "info" graphic that accompanied the article:



Yes, in that graphic, every single one of those families makes a six figure income, the lowest being $180 thousand, and yet because of the new tax hikes imposed by Obama, they all appear as though he ran over the family dog.

The median household income in the U.S. between 2007-2011 was $52,762, but the American people are all supposed to shed tears for those that make between three to twelve times as much? Seriously, how out of touch do you have to be to think that? Of course, this is the same outfit that supported a guy who thought making $250k qualified as "middle income".

This is also further insulting considering right wingers bitch endlessly about government workers like teachers supposedly living high on the hog.

I have to say though, the most puzzling thing about that comic: why is that minority couple who hasn't had their taxes increased also depressed?


Oh, also I would be remiss if I didn't link to this highly appropriate piece by Gawker's Hamilton Nolan:

The Top 1% Must Stop Insisting They’re Not Rich Right This Instant




UPDATE: Well, this is interesting. Seems the Illustrator of that graphic was just as flabbergasted as the rest of us.

34 comments:

  1. Yes, those folks will all will pay more taxes. It seems like you are happy about that. Wait a bit and see if you like the results. You may like higher taxes, but you won't like it when unemployment goes up.

    You like all these taxes? You think its okay? Well, I hate to tell you but Obama just raised the taxes on 160M workers in the country by 2%. It comes to $125B in 2013. Much more than those tax increase for those rich folks you don't seem to like. It will come to $2000 per family - forever...A very big hit to America's middle and lower income groups.

    I don't think you will like that result either.

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    Replies
    1. You mean the expiration of the payroll tax cut that was only here for two years, and goes to fund Social Security which, not being a Republican idea, is something that actually works?


      Honest to God, can you conservatives make it through two sentences without lying? Ever?

      Delete
    2. Mr Krasting is a well known professional obfuscater...

      obama didnt "do" anything, the damn payroll tax cut expired...

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    3. Bruce, I Googled and Googled but I cannot find one comment from you from two years ago thanking and applauding Obama for lowering taxes for 160M workers.

      Frankly though, I'm glad that "holiday" expired because I do like funding Social Security.

      Delete
    4. So cutting taxes leads to employment growth?

      Is that why in the year after Reagan's massive tax cut, unemployment went from 7% to 10%?

      Is that why in the eight years after GWBush's massive tax cuts, we saw only 1.1 million net jobs created, while in the eight years after Clinton's 1993 tax hike, we saw 23 million net jobs created?

      Oh, I'm sorry, you were spouting conservative bullshit. Sorry to interrupt you with facts.

      Delete
    5. So you all think that there is a link between raising taxes and increasing employment?

      Delete
    6. I would say raising taxes doesn't always hurt employment. Heck, most of the tax hikes I can think of that occurred since 1900 haven't hurt employment.

      Delete
    7. It is like the family that just is addicted to credit cards and does not think they have a problem by spending more then they make. In the article it shows pulling 22k out of someones budget. This is more than you can put in a 401k and IRA combined....which is supposed to fund your retirement correct. This entire 1% stuff needs to die, there will always be someone that has more than me but I am ok with it. There is no reason they deserve to pay a higher % of income of tax... 100,000 x 20% is higher then 50,000 x 20%. Both people get the same benefit from the government but the person earning more already pays more.

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    8. Chris, you don't seem to understand how progressive taxation works, but I'll give you a hand: every person in the US pays the same percentage on the same aggregate dollar earned (excluding deductions). The person that makes a million a year pays the same percentage on his first $30,000 that the person making only $30,000 pays. It's perfectly reasonable and fair. The biggest difference currently is that rich people that derive a disproportionate share of their income from passive investments pay a *smaller* percentage than those that derive their income from working. *That* is not fair and what you should be complaining about.

      Delete
    9. Chris: A millionaire paying 10% extra tax buys one fewer yacht. A poor person paying 10% extra tax eats one fewer meal. These are not equivalent.

      Delete
    10. I'm so sick of hearing conservatives complain that raising taxes on the wealthy will destroy jobs, yet lowering taxes creates jobs.

      If we follow their crazy train of thought to its conclusion, then paying zero taxes will create zero unemployment.

      Since most economic studies have proven otherwise, I've concluded that most conservatives suffer from the Dunning-Kruger Effect; They're simply too ignorant to realize just how ignorant they really are.

      Delete
    11. I think Chris' point was that different people pay different amounts for the same services. For example, someone that makes $30k a year will pay ~$9k in taxes and someone that makes $300k a year will pay ~$90k in taxes. Both people get the same roads, the same military, the same homeland defense, the same CIA, FBI, etc. So Joey walks into a bar and buys a beer for 30 cents yet Bob has to buy the same beer for $3.00, just because Bob makes more money. In the most fundamental sense, this is unfair. Making the taxes progressive in no way changes this point.

      Delete
    12. Anonymous,

      When I was younger and made less money, I owned a 25 year old Buick Skylark, an assortment of cheap stuff that I know from experience could be shoved into the Skylark in a pinch, and perhaps as much as $1,000 in the bank at any given time). My wife could tell a similar story, except she drove a 3 cylinder Chevy Sprint

      Now we make much more - not in the 1% range by any stretch, but much more than we did back then. Now we have shares of stock. A couple IRAs. Several rental properties.

      Back when we were younger, the first, last, and only line of defense of our assets was us. What kept someone from robbing my stuff was the fact that I was there to defend it. Now, I depend on the government to defend my assets. The rental properties we own, we own only because the government guarantees their title. The stocks, same thing. Ditto the IRA. It ain't because they're afraid of me that people don't squat in my rentals, defraud the companies I own shares of, or steal from my bank account. It's because the government would come down hard on them for doing it, a heck of a lot harder than if someone stole a few sweaters from the back of a 25 year old Buick even though the latter represents more of the owner's wealth than the former. And I have no doubt that Bill Gates is even more dependent on the government to defend his assets than I am.

      That service - defense of assets - doesn't come for free. It has to be paid for somehow. And it is only fair that those who benefit from that service the most pay the most.

      Delete
  2. Bruce:

    Indeed, the Clinton tax hikes on the rich in the 90s sure sent the economy into a tailspin, right?

    Also, fun fact, both John Boehner and Mitt Romney were against the payroll tax cut extension.

    Furthermore, you were complaining about how Obama's being mean to the rich with his new taxes, while also complaining that he supposedly wanted the middle class to pay MORE cause of the payroll tax cut expiration? Make up your mind. Does Obama hate the rich or the non-rich?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. brucie's doc-in-a-box is tweakin his bipolar cocktail
      (this could take 1 to 3 months before the next tweak)

      Delete
  3. I don't like that additional $2,000 either, however that increase is mostly the reinstatement of Social Security/Medicare premiums that had been temporarily reduced.

    I have to ask; when taxes where far higher in the upper income brackets than they are today (even with this oh so horrible increase!) why was unemployment lower and the level of prosperity across the board so much higher?

    Of course there's also the argument to be made that when there were no income taxes at all that the country was doing pretty well too. But that was back before there was a Federal Reserve and the US printed its own money, debt free. We also didn't have an empire to protect. Maybe we should just get rid of the Fed and curtail military spending? Just a thought.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thats a great thought...sales tax / consumption tax only...makes a lot more sense then we can lay off all the IRS workers too

      Delete
    2. Since the poor must spend (consume) all their money to survive, they'd bear the heaviest burden of anyone, while the rich would have very little of their overall wealth touched. Really unfair.

      And what's this about printing money debt-free? When was the US ever debt-free, besides never?

      Delete
  4. I have often heard that government should be run like business.
    When Black Friday, or any other sales are over the prices go back up. Shouldn't temporary tax cuts likewise end?

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  5. Sure, if you don't tax the rich they'll keep on employing labor, just like they've been employing labor since this recession started. Oh wait, they stopped, that's *why* the recession started.

    Rich people stop emplying labor because they've sucked every penny out of the system and there's nothing left to do but sit on the wealth like Smaug. They don't stop because taxes went up, and they never start because taxes go down.

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  6. As the cartoon shows clearly, Obama has raised taxes on ALL white people, but has NOT raised the taxes on retirees, who are all black. Clearly we need to cut Social Security.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It definitely wasn't an accident that the WSJ made them black.

      Delete
  7. Anonymous..your an idiot. When did all retirees become black??!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You need to adjust your snark meter.

      Delete
    2. Did you just call yourself and I an idiot? Just asking.

      Delete
  8. What all these sad people fail to realize, maybe because they read only the Wall Street Journal, is that taxes on a single person earning, say, a measly $113,000 a year, will go up -- percentage-wise -- more than the wealthy sad people's taxes are rising. Why? Because the Journal is figuring payroll tax into this equation, and the sad people don't pay Social Security payroll tax on income above $113,700.

    The reason the sad black couple's taxes didn't go up is because they don't pay into Social Security tax at all. Because they don't have jobs. I think they're sad because the Journal decided to portray black people as the "typical" kind of people who mooch off Social Security and Medicare so our unborn grandchildren are already destined for the poorhouse of the future.

    The graphic completely obscures the fact that the sad people get a better tax break than the lucky duckies living on half the sad people's income. It's hard to believe the Journal would do something so deceptive. Isn't it?

    The Constant Weader at http://www.RealityChex.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. It's well known in the reality based community that the economy and employment rate both do better when tax rates are higher on high incomes. (The current WSJ ideologues don't remember how well we were doing in the 1950s when the top marginal income tax rate was 91%.)

    See http://conceptualmath.org/philo/taxgrowth.htm
    to see how tax cuts hinder growth, and tax increases support growth.

    Also:
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303425504577353843997820160.html

    and:

    http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2012/09/tax-cuts-dont-lead-to-economic-growth-a-new-65-year-study-finds/262438/

    ReplyDelete
  10. Could someone explain to me how a retired couple "earns" $180,000 annually when only $25,000 of it is investment income? Alby

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  11. It would be interesting to know the true demographics of this. How many single-parent two-kid families have an income of $260,000 or more? Where do they live? How many married couples with four children have $650,000 in income? How many singles with $230,000 in income, $25,000 coming from investments?

    ReplyDelete
  12. The minority couple are down in the mouth because they are RETIREES. What you read as depression is actually guilt and shame. Shame at leaching off the rest of us hardworking, six-figure 'Muricans, doing our important jobs while THEY swan about on their entitlements like the rest of the filthy moochers.

    ReplyDelete
  13. The artist who did the illustrations has a blog, and posted about it before the article came out. http://illustratoriumweek.blogspot.com/2013/01/bring-it-on-2013.html

    His followup quote is quite informative.

    ReplyDelete
  14. hi

    The Post was unique I am so glad that I read this article… I’ve been freelancing for a while now and the taxes side of everything is what really stresses me out. Thank you!

    all about money

    ReplyDelete

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