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Letters to the Editor

Rich folks pay plenty

Brad Duncan April 24th, 2013

D.W. Tiffee’s Feb. 13 letter to Oklahoma Gazette, “A tax cut to die for,” makes two misleading statements that represent the typical liberal spin regarding tax assessments. The first statement was, “The bottom 20 percent pay an effective state and local rate of 10.3 percent vs. 4.6 percent for the top 1 percent.” The second was, “Fair to Republicans always means the poor paying more and the rich paying less.” Sounds as if the “poor” are being terribly put upon while those “wascally rich” are making out like bandits as usual, huh?

Something seems to be mistakenly, if not conveniently, missed in Tiffee’s logic. “The poor paying more?” I don’t think so.

The following are pretty close estimates of the bottom of the 20 percent bottoms and the bottom of the top 1 percent’s respective annual gross income levels, those being $25,000 for the “poor” and $250,000 for the “rich.” Multiply 10.3 percent by $25,000 and you have the “poor” paying $2,575 in taxes. Multiply 4.6 percent by $250,000 and you have the “rich” paying $11,500 in taxes. Huh? The rich guy is paying four and a half times more in greenbacks than the poor guy. And Tiffee has the poor paying more? And the rich guy and the poor guy get exactly the same benefit from governmentally provided products and services.

I don’t think the rich guy would agree with Tiffee’s assessment of the poor paying more. Last time I checked, $11,500 amounted to a heck of a lot more than $2,575. I believe the rich guy might want to trade tax liabilities with the poor guy, don’t you?

Using his logic, one could vainly attempt to make the case that the poor guy and the rich guy were both looking to buy the same lower-income rental property but the poor guy could settle for paying $40,000 for the property while the rich guy would be required to pay $180,000 for it because he either had been fortunate or even worked quite a bit longer, harder and smarter to arrive at his respective income level. Is that the way American property owners and realtors do business when selling property? I don’t think so.

But then again, in Tiffee’s economy, $2,575 is more than $11,500. So, maybe he might be able to pull it off anyway, contingent upon the rich guy not being very good at math.

—Brad Duncan, Edmond

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