Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Warren Buffet Can't Do Math, Apparently

Well, a lot of people have shared this Warren Buffet article, so I have to throw in my 2 cents:  aren't paying enough taxes, Warren? Let's fix that.

Send a check to the Treasury to assuage your guilt, this group had a pledge over a year ago to do just that.

Of course, Buffet's guilt trip tale avoids the IRS numbers that show that the top 1% earn 20% of the income and pay 38.02% of income taxes. Of course, those are the folks making over $392,149 a year, they are not the super-rich, that .1% that makes 9% of the income and pays 18% of the income taxes. Table 5 on this page    

Anyway, you could take all of Buffet's money and only pay for the Food Stamp program for 257 days... in fact, if we confiscate all the income of everybody making over 250,000 (1.93% of all households) it's about 1.47 trillion dollars, which is enough to cover about 114 days of the budget (see Iowahawk here).

So great, Warren, you make a lot of money, but you don't seem to be able to do math. If 100% tax rate isn't enough, isn't it a spending rather than an income problem? The total US personal income is just under 8 trillion, should the government budget be half of that?

With a debt of more than 14 trillion, Buffet's suggestion is a joke. Taking everybody's income would only pay half.


Ok, so here's the irony, and it's going unreported except for the New York Post, apparently:

Americans for Limited Government researcher Richard McCarty, who was alerted to the controversy by a federal government lawyer, said, “The company has been short-changing the tax collection agency for much of the past decade.   Mr. Buffett’s company has not fully settled its tax bills from 2002-2009.  Yet he says he’d happily pay more.  Except the IRS has apparently been asking him to pay more going on nine years.”

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