Robin Hood Tax

Did Trump Get a Big Tax Refund After 2005? (6/16/2017)

Trump’s tax cuts are trickle down economics all over again — except this time it’s even worse (6/6/2017)

Trump's Tax Cuts May Be More Damaging Than Reagan's (5/1/2017)

Zombies of Voodoo Economics (4/24/2017)

No Trump taxes, no tax reform (4/18/2017)

Filing your income taxes is a pain, and that is not an accident

The 35 Percent Corporate Tax Myth (3/9/2017)

Treasury Nominee Vows No Tax Cut for Rich. Math Says the Opposite. (2/9/2017)

Trump Tax Plan Would Give Wealthiest Americans $2.1 Trillion in Tax Cuts

Analysis: 60% of House GOP's Proposed Tax Cut Would Go to the Top 1%

We don't pay taxes. Only the little people pay taxes. Leonna Helmsley

"[In Finland] My tax form had been one page long, and came prefilled with my earnings and taxes paid, including the calculations for amounts owed or refunded. My job was simply to check that everything was correct and amend it if needed. During my years as a salaried employee, I mostly just looked it over and did nothing." the Nordic Theory of Everything, In Search of a Better Life: Anu Partanen

" economic matter unites just about every member of the Republican party: support for tax cuts, particularly for those at the top of the income ladder." Paul Krugman

"Data from OECD shows one consistent, general principle. The higher the taxes in a given country, the less inequality." Chris Hayes: Twilight of the Elites, America After Meritocracy

"Inequality is at an all-time high in this country. And the reason for it, as much as anything, is the tax code, because folks at the top have far more money to spend than they ever did. I mean, the tax cuts in the 2000 decade, most of the estimates say $700 billion was—the rich did not have to pay. And that went straight into the deficit. And now people at the top, who fund a lot of these think tanks, they want to cut Social Security, Medicare, other benefits like that, because they say the deficit is out of control. Well, one of the reasons we have the deficit is because of the tax cuts." Democracy Now interview with Barlett and Steele

“It’s not that taxes are far too high for giant corporations, as the lobbyists claim. No, the problem is that the revenue generated from corporate taxes is far too low.” – Senator Elizabeth Warren

"In the United States, many working class voters support candidates promising to lower taxes on the wealthy, despite the fact that such tax cuts will arguably deprive them of important government services." Francis Fukuyama in Foreign Affairs 9/2014

No other industrialised country asks its citizens to jump through as many hoops to calculate their taxes as ours. NY Times (4/15/2015)

When the tax code is redrawn so that hedge fund guys pay less than you do, or corporate bosses pay a lower percentage than their secretaries, that's winner take all. Scott Timberg: Killing the Creative Class

...history is not going to deal kindly with a rich nation that will not tax itself to cure its miseries. John W Gardner, No Easy Victorieson corporate welfare

Something happened between the 1950s and today which can only be described as a mammoth tax break, giveaway, to the richest Americans. Their top bracket went from 91 percent to 35 percent, and as Mitt Romney's recent tax disclosure reveals, people who earn $45 million a year can get it down to 15 percent, because the system has been revised to serve the rich. So there's no way out of the conclusion that over the last forty to fifty years the greatest beneficiaries of tax cuts in the United States were the richest Americans. Part of the reason the gap between rich and poor has become so extreme in the U.S. is precisely because of the success of the rich in buying the political influence needed to reduce their tax burdens so dramatically. Occupy the Economy, Challenging Capitalism: Richard Wolff pg 108

Low Taxes, light-touch regulation, weak unions, and unlimited campaign donations are certainly in the best interest of the plutocrats, but that doesn't mean they are the right way to maintain the economic system that created today's super elite. Christia Freeland: Plutocrats.

"Taxes, after all, are the dues that we pay for the privileges of membership in an organized society." FDR

This Week's George Stephanopoulos did not challenge Sen. John McCain's assertion that "history shows every time you have cut capital gains taxes, revenues have increased -- going back to Jack Kennedy." Stephanopoulos did not note that, notwithstanding a potential short-term revenue increase, many economists have challenged the claim that revenue goes up over the long term as a result of capital gains tax rates being cut. (Full Story)

"The Government Accountability Office in August 2008 reported that behind the corporate cries of pain over the tax burdens they are forced to bear is a startling truth: Between 1998 and 2005, two-thirds of U.S. corporations paid no U.S. income taxes - zip." From David Korten's Agenda For a New Economy pg 127

Over time, the United States has expected less and less of its elite, even as society has oriented itself in a way that is most likely to maximise their income. The top income-tax rate was 91 percent in 1960, 70 percent in 1980, 50 percent in 1986, 39.6 percent in 2000, and is now 35 percent. Income from investments is taxed at a rate as low as 15 percent. The mortgage-interest tax deduction is most generous, of course, to the affluent, and while it's small potatoes to anyone who makes a good income, so too, is the savings incentive provided by 401(k) plans. The estate tax, meanwhile, has been gutted.Don Peck's book Pinched.

...American workers are treated daily to a steady diet of the concerns of the very wealthy, with almost never a mention of the concerns of average workers. And at the top of the list of concerns of the very wealthy: taxes. From Thom Hartman's book Threshold pg 135.

...Bloomberg dismissed Warren Buffett's call for tax fairness as "just theatrics", pointing out, "If Warren Buffett made his money from ordinary income rather than capital gains, his tax rate would be a lot higher than his secretary's" That's a good point - which is exactly why Buffett calls for capital gains and ordinary income to be taxed at the same rate. From Extra! the Magazine of Fair, November 2011

April 15, the day when you pay your taxes, gives you a good index of how democracy is functioning. If democracy were functioning effectively, April 15 would be a day of celebration. That's a day on which we get together to contribute to implementing the policies that we've decided on. That's what April 15 ought to be. Here it's a day of mourning. This alien force is coming to steal your hard-earned money from you. That indicates an extreme contempt for democracy. And it's natural that a business-run society and doctrinal system should try to inculcate that belief. Power Systems: Noam Chomsky pg 159

We need revenue to balance the budget. We need sustainable clean-tech jobs. We need less dependence on Mideast oil. And we need to take steps to mitigate climate change ... The easiest way to do all of this at once is with a gasoline tax or price on carbon. Would you rather cut Social Security and Medicare or pay a little more per gallon of gas and make the country stronger, safer and healthier ? It still amazes me that out politicians have the courage to send our citizens to war but not to ask the public that question. Thomas L. Friedman 9/14/2011 NYT

It won't be a trickle down economy, it will be Niagra up.

Republicans in Congress, in order to pass tax cuts for the wealthy, will pass an austerity budget, probably block grant programs like Medicaid to the States. That’s the Republican health care plan. So States will need to either take up some of the burden...or remove services from the most vulnerable.

States, like Connecticut, are already under some stress, so very lean budgets will be even more starved.

Finally it will trickle down to the localities and fall on the property tax.

Services will deteriorate at all levels, there will not be much revenue for decaying infrastructure.

Since we are also facing a climate crisis, the best way to deal with these issues would be a stiff carbon tax. That would be a robust revenue source, and an effective way to reduce CO2 emissions.

Trump and Congress Both Want Tax Cuts. The Question Is Which Ones. (11/12/2016)

American elites don't have to go to Panama to hide their money — they can go to Delaware. (5/4/2016)

Here’s a Way to Shut Down Panama Papers-Style Tax Havens — If We Wanted To (4/17/2016)

Forget Panama: it's easier to hide your money in the US than almost anywhere (4/6/2016)

Not Just Trump: Every GOP Candidate Is an Extremist (3/1/2016)

Donald Trump: I Fight Like Hell Not To Pay (2/10/2016)

This afternoon, February 10, 2016, I happened to turn on CSPAN, our best view into what Congress is up to.

Rep Pete Sessions (R Texas) said he is improving government. He worries that government is spending too much. For example, he thinks the National Science Foundation is wasteful. It is funding a musical about climate change, and also spending money on why people cheat on their taxes. He says these are not in the national interest. Republicans are always trying to make science fit their ideology.

Of course, country club Republicans are always engaged in their favorite sport: avoiding taxes and they have many professionals, lawyers, accountants, and other consultants to help them. Corporations like Pfizer would migrate overseas and take their earnings with them to avoid taxes. GE, world-class polluter, gets subsidies from the government that give it an effective tax rate of -9%. If I remember my high school civics, the reason the Articles of Confederation was a failure, was that it did not provide adequate taxes. It was replaced with the Constitution that we have today.

The problem remains. Tax cheating is a problem and Republicans are leaders in exacerbating it. They are still claiming that tax cuts improve revenue, while the lessons of the past are to the contrary. Are Republicans destroying this Constitution also ?

Representative Jim McGovern (D Massachusetts) strongly opposed the bill to “hamstrung the NSF”. Republicans are concerned about deficit reduction, but refuse to allow the Budget Director to discuss the President's budget with them. They have shut down the government three times without regard for the consequences. U.S. infrastructure is in a deplorable state, will be increasingly expensive to fix, and is likely to cause trajedy. Republicans prefer an austerity budget that will not address the problem.

Climate change is most likely the most serious threat to life on this planet. Very likely we are beyond the point of no return, yet Republicans deny the science and want to cut spending for the National Science Foundation. That is consistent with their short-sighted closure of the Office of Technololgy Assessment some years ago. They blocked the CIA's study of climate as a security threat.

The kids are doomed, but Republicans don't care.

Electing Republicans assures that the future will include endless war, a hostile climate, and unresponsive government. We should remove them from office.

Go Bernie.

5 Tax Myths You'll Hear During Republican Presidential Debate (8/5/2015)

The Walmart Web: How the World’s Biggest Corporation Secretly Uses Tax Havens to Dodge Taxes (6/17/2015)

GOP Governors State Tax Proposals Hit Poor Harder (5/6/2015)

Republican Presidential Candidates Rally Around Flat Tax (5/15/2015)

Taxes Take, and Give Back, Mostly to the Very Rich (3/2015)

The Gap Between Statutory and Real Corporate Tax Rates (3/2015)

Paul Ryan's triple scam on tax reform (11/23/2014)

The Tax Code Is Rigged (8/22/2014)

Stop Subsidizing Tax Dodgers, Stiglitz (5/31/2014)

If the IRS Was Targeting Karl Rove's Shadowy Group, It Was Doing Its Job (4/11/2014)

More Proof Corporate Tax Cuts Have Done More Harm Than Good (3/27/2014)

5 Reasons It's Just Absurd That America Doesn't Tax Wall St's Transactions (7/22/2013)

Meet The Top Wall Street and Corporate Tax Dodgers (7/4/2013) PDF

A Tax System Stacked Against The 99%: Joe Stiglitz(4/16/2013)

Happy Birthday, Dear Income Tax (2/25/2013)

US Firms Stash Tens of Billions In Tax Havens, Govt Says (1/30/2013)

The Truth Behind Grover Norquist's Pledge (12/11/12)

Eliot Spitzer's Excellent Idea (12/4/2012)

Tax Cuts Don't Lead to Economic Growth, a New 65-Year Study Finds (9/16/2012)

15 Things the GOP Doesn't Want You To Know about Taxes And The Debt (9/2/2012)

A Tax Plan That Defies the Rules of Math (8/11/2012)

Republicans Will Raise Taxes, just Not on the Wealthy (7/24/2012)

Corporation that paid nothing in taxes for four years Tells Congress it Paid too much in taxes (7/21/2012)

Senate Republicans Block Debate On Buffett Rule (3/17/2012)

GOP Tax Cuts For The Rich Are Up To 270 Times Larger Than Tax Cuts For The Middle Class (1/10/2012)

Things To Tax: Paul Krugman (11/28/2011)

The Average Bush Tax Cut For The 1 Percent This Year Will Be Greater Than The Average Income Of the Other 99 Percent(11/23/2011)

The Problem With Flat Tax Fever (11/5/2011)

Herman Cain's Plan To Double Your Taxes (8/13/2011)

Do Tax Cuts Increase Revenue ? No ...(8/24/2011)

Tax Cuts Don't Pay For Themselves: Bruce Bartlett (6/19/2011)

The GOP Will Raise Taxes -- on the Middle Class and the Working Poor (8/23/2011)

The Biggest Republican Tax Lie (6/20/2011)

Ralph Nader's Letter To President Obama on Extended Tax Cuts (12/15/2010)

Harvard and Northwestern Economists: GOP tax cuts and resulting emergence of the elite class caused the financial crisis (2/20/2009)

" tax systems skillfully so as to tax bad things, like pollution and congestion, rather than good things like work and profit. Not to do so is plain, bad economics." Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the IMF

Corporations are people...but they don't pay taxesRomney Rain

(6/2015) Ct Governor Malloy's determination to repair infrastructure resulted in spending cuts, and raised corporate taxes, but large corporations, members of the CBIA, screamed in pain and threatened to leave the State.

General Electric cried loudest. From 2008 to 2013, GE profits were over $33.9 billion in United States, it received a total tax refund of more than $2.9 billion, for an effective tax rate of -9 percent.. In 2012, GE stashed $108 billion in offshore tax havens. If this practice were outlawed, GE would have paid $37.8 billion in federal income taxes that year. GE has been a leader in outsourcing decent paying jobs to China, Mexico and other low-wage countries. It is also a leading polluter.

CEO Immelt has a retirement account at General Electric worth an estimated $59 million and made $19 million in total compensation last year.

He is a member of the Business Roundtable, a group that wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70, cut Social Security and veterans’ benefits, increase taxes on working families, and cut corporate taxes even further.

As Leonna Helmsley said “Only little people pay taxes” and these Corporations are not little. The lesson we can learn from this: Not only can you not tax multinationals, they will threaten to leave if taxpayers don't bribe them to stay. They can open bidding among States and localities to see who will make them the best offer.

Get real.

Wouldn't infrastructure be better funded with a higher gasoline tax ? Wouldn't carbon taxes make sense ?

Change tax policy:

  • Why is it that unearned income is taxed at a much lower rate than wage income from hard work ? Tax unearned income instead of payroll taxes. Eliminate Payroll taxes to put more money into the hands of lower income people and improve demand. Without sufficient demand, the number of jobs will not increase.

  • New financial transactions taxes on high-speed trading, a Tobin Tax, and others to reduce speculation and its associated volatility.

  • Raise the inheritance tax so that we don't get an aristocracy. The Walton Family (owners of Wal-Mart) are lobbying mightily to eliminate the estate tax. They stand to gain $37 billion dollars if and when it is repealed. Many of their employees are on food stamps.

  • A stiff graduated income tax would damp down income inequality, take back bank bonuses from taxpayer bailouts, trim exorbitant CEO pay, take back Social Security from people who don't really need it, and unburden people who are out of work. We had a marginal tax rate of over 90% under Ike, and the economy did well.

  • Stop corporate welfare. The fossil fuel industry should not be subsidized.

  • Considering the dire warnings of climate scientists, we need to rapidly reduce use of fossil fuels. Impose a carbon tax. Invest in renewables and energy efficiency.

Even though the deficit is one of their main complaints, country club Republicans favorite sport is evading taxes. Their accountants and lawyers rely on that to make their living, but as in other corrupt countries, tax avoidance is a large part of the problem with deficits. A stiff graduated tax would solve many problems: It would take care of the obscene bonuses that bankers gave themselves after the taxpayer bailouts, it would damp down hedge fund speculation, and it would make means-testing Social Security unnecessary. When Ike was President the top marginal tax rate was around 90%, highly respected executives worked for a dollar a year. But things have changed since Republicans took the Grover Norquist pledge. US leadership has failed.

If there is anything that Republicans agree on it is that taxes should be flat, but keep in mind that any flattening is a cut for the already wealthy. It is regressive and it exacerbates our already extreme unfairness in income distribution. Republicans opposed extending the payroll tax cuts which would help working people, but favor lowering corporate taxes and capital gains taxes. They are actually tax dodgers in the pocket of oligarchs.

The simple-minded Republican mantra that lower taxes and smaller government are always better disguises the reality. It is effective in accelerating income disparities to extreme levels, removes the tax burden from the already wealthy, and makes government an ATM machine for the well connected.

Here's the important thing to notice: earnings from hard work are taxed much more heavily than financial windfalls. That's why Mitt Romney and Warren Buffett pay a much lower percentage tax rate than do the vast majority of workers. It's also one of the reasons that income inequality has grown so rapidly in the U.S. Almost all of the productiviity gains of the last few decades have gone to a small fraction of the 1%. Most people would agree that unearned income should be taxed much more heavily than wages from hard work.

That many forms of unearned income should be more lightly taxed than earned income may appear incongruous in a country that, according to the President, sanctifies the work ethic, but the explanation is not hard to fathom: wealthowners have more political power in America than nonowners of wealth. The list of tax privileges that wealthowners enjoy runs the gamut from the petty to the grandiose. The initial advantage is that taxes on unearned income are not withheld automatically, as are taxes on wages and salaries. Unearned income is also exempt from social security and other payroll taxes, which are the fastest growing federal taxes. Peter Barnes (1972)

For example, high-speed trading is a parasitic activity on the market. A tax on high-speed trading could damp down some of the economic volatility we experience, It could raise considerable revenue also.

Students borrowing to pay for higher education should not pay higher interest rates than banks or taxes on their wages. In countries with more successful outcomes, education is free.

A carbon tax should replace payroll taxes for everyone making less than, say, $100,000.

Since US media and elected officials are beholden to big money, it is a worthwhile investment for large contributors to invest in the US political process. That is how major corporations have climbed out from under their tax burdens, how extreme wealth gets to keep more and more of their stash, why most people (you) will have to pay more, why the middle class is sinking, and why our government is for the corporations, not the people.

Media, reliably representing the corporate interest, never mentions advantages of a progressive tax. The graduated income tax does not burden you when you are out of work. It can roll back obscene bonuses, improve anemic demand, level our increasingly poor wealth disparities, damp speculation, prevent a new aristocracy, help break politicians dependence on oligarchs, and it is in the spirit of true Christianity by burdening the already comfortable and relieving the poor. Under Ike the top marginal rate was around 90% and the economy was much better.

Both fundamental fairness and sensible economic policy justify progressivity in the tax code. The progressive income tax lost most of its progressivity under Republicans since Eisenhower (the top marginal rate was round 90%) and the net result has been an increase in the already poor distribution of income in the US.

The elimination of the estate tax (shrewdly labeled the 'death tax' by Republicans) is yet another tax break for unearned wealth that will continue our move toward extreme income inequality and aristocracy. This Republican initiative has the potential to bring back the kind of feudal aristocracy that this country's founders abhorred.

Republicans have not made government smaller, nor have they been fiscally responsible. They did not pay for the wars that they provoked, they borrowed massively from third world countries (passing this debt on to the next generation), and enriched their cronies with much of the proceeds. How is that different than a banana republic ?

Cutting taxes to bankrupt the government empowers the private sector, restores aristocracy, and makes them the rulers. The Supreme Court's Citizens United decision seals the deal.

seven Ways to end the Deficit Without throwing Grandma Under the Bus

Top Corporate Tax Dodgers

Work and Taxes

Why Are We Afraid To Tax the Super Rich ? (3/12/2010)

Soak the Very, Very Rich (8/16/2010)

Tax Cuts for the Rich Are Pure Theft (8/10/2010)

Why Congress Must End Bush Tax Breaks For the Rich (7/28/2010)

Despite Right-Wing Whining, Taxes Are at a Historic Low (5/11/2010)

Study: Bush Tax Cuts Cost More Than Twice As Much As Dems' Health-Care Bill (9/9/2009)

Tax cuts are expenditures. Got that, reporters?

Where Are the Good Times the Tax Cutters Promised ?

Study says most corporations pay no U.S. income taxes (8/12/2008)

Bush tax cuts exacerbate income inequality. (9/13/2004)

Republicans complain about taxes, and vow to make government smaller, but they never acknowledge that most taxes go to the world's largest military.

Your Tax Dollars at War: More than 53% of Your Tax Payment Goes to the Military (4/13/2010)

Where your taxes go. See the explanation why percentages vary.

The logical outcome of Republican tax policy: California. (Golden State Fever, Peter Schrag, Harper's Magazine, September 2009)

They blame the used to be welfare mothers but currently illegal aliens.

Guess what ? Warren Buffett pays less in taxes that you do. Here is a video of his comments on the estate tax.

See this video: Senator Sanders vs Bush Nominee

Recent and archived news articles by David Cay Johnston of The New York Times.

The Mythology Surrounding the Corporate Tax Rate.

National Priorities Project

The Estate Tax Scam

Where your taxes go. See the explanation why percentages vary.

About Oreo Cookies

Flat Tax

Republicans often favor a flat sales tax, sometimes called in an Orwellian sense the 'Fair Tax'.. It is backed by very wealthy and, like all other Republican policy, it is extremely regressive. Be careful what you wish for. It is an integral part of the Republican scam. We have a distribution of income worse than that of 1929. Making it worse makes economic collapse more likely and pushes many into debt servitude.

Republican candidates often think that the 'fair tax' (their words to describe a flat sales tax) is a good idea. It isn't.
It is, actually, a trojan horse for their regressive agenda. It puts tax burden on the poorest. They would like to 'privatize' Social Security and shred what's left of the social safety net as well. They ignore the lessons of the great depression. They basically want to roll back the New Deal.

Robin Hood TaxRobin Hood Tax

A financial transaction tax is more fair, stabilizing, and much better for the economy. More than 40 countries have one. European finance ministers implemented one on January 1, 2014.

H.R. 1579 proposes a small tax on Wall Street transactions that could raise hundreds of billions of dollars annually from banks and investment firms that recovered thanks to our tax dollars. The tax would help limit reckless short-term speculation that threatens financial stability, calm the deficit hawks, and slow the Republican war on 'entitlements'.

A former Goldman Sachs investment banker pointed out "High-frequency trades are carried out at 'blinding speeds to the point where 50, 60 or 70 percent are done by 'robo-traders.' This does not give value to the economy, it damages it."

H.R. 1579 revenue could create jobs, maintain failing infrastructure, reduce poverty, and even address climate change. We need a different Congress to pass H.R. 1579.

Property Tax

As inflation proceeds, as it always does, retirees on fixed incomes find that the value of their homes increase along with their taxes and pushes them out of their homes especially quickly along the shoreline. Seniors may have few options for paying higher taxes considering that inflation in practically everything else makes the problem worse.

The property tax is regressive, a force for urban sprawl, a destroyer of undeveloped land, and a patently unfair lever that forces seniors from their homes. Since the State mandates property taxes as the main source of school funding, it makes education dependent on the affluence of each town.

It is no wonder the argument over the town budget looks like a generational war: Retirees vs Students.

Some Legislators in Florida have proposed doing away with the property tax as a funding source for the schools. They have proposed modest increases in the State's sales tax to provide for school funding. Actually, the sales tax is fairly regressive also. It hits everyone whether they are earning or not, so it can depress consumption. Look at it this way: a relatively poor person will need to spend a large percentage of his income and his consumption taxes will be much higher by percentage than the very wealthy who need to consume only a small part of their income.

The best solution, although at State level, would be to eliminate the property tax as a funding source for the schools by replacing it with the graduated income tax. The income tax hits only people who actually have income...not students or seniors, and when it is graduated it can put the burden on those most able to pay. Considering the obscene CEO salaries that we often hear about, it is only reasonable to tax high earners at high percentage rates. We used to do this, but Republicans changed it.

The Property Tax should be minimal. It is unfair, subject to inflation, contributes to urban sprawl, and it is highly regressive. The graduated income tax falls most on the comfortable and is, overall, fairest and best for the economy.

Graduated Income Tax

Many States have an income tax that is a percentage of Federal. The graduated income tax is the fairest and best one to pay for the town's schools or other State expenses. It is an economic stabilizer, so it is also best at national level.

  • It doesn't hit you when you're not working.
  • It is heaviest for the people who are most comfortable.
  • It is a solution for those obscene CEO salaries, and outsized bonuses. Don't conflate greed with incentive. In the Eisenhower years marginal tax rates could exceed 90 percent. Our finest CEO's, at that time, were happy to work for $1 a year. Broadcasters then understood public service obligations.
  • It leads to more robust demand. The wealthy don't have to spend as much, by percentage, as the rest of the people do. The Republican story that they are the 'job creators' ignores the facts that more jobs have been exported than created by corporate america.
  • It puts a damper on the natural tendency to oligarchy and aristocracy.

Tobin Tax

Excessive speculation creates volatility in the economy and is one of the causes of cycles of boom and bust. In the 1930's there were steps taken to damp it down. The Glass-Steagle Act protected taxpayers from excessive banking risk, but that was rejected in the zeal to deregulate.

The Tobin Tax is a tax on speculator's currency transactions. It is a good idea. Republicans won't hear of it.

Howard Zinn on Taxes and Class War

America's Invisible Rich  

America's Invisible Rich

Politicians can't seem to see any wealthy people when deciding whom to tax. Read more »

Federal Budget Priorities

The Federal budget is probably the strongest statement of US priorities that we have. In a democracy, It should reflect the wishes of the people, but, according to polls, it doesn't. Much better results would result from the People's Budget, which has been endorsed by Paul Krugman, Dean Baker, Jeffrey Sachs and even Forbes magazine.

Here's what we have:
  • Percentage of US discretionary budget spent for military: 57% (since the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan were funded in supplementary budget requests, they must be added to that!)
  • US Military Budget as a percent of World total military expenditures: 49%
  • Percentage of US discretionary budget spent on education and other social services: 8%
  • Number of Americans classified as "food insecure" in 2004: 38 million
  • Number of Americans without health insurance: 45 million
  • Total direct aid to Israel 1948-2006: $255 billion
  • Total Cost of US Support for Israel: $1.688 trillion (not counting money and lives lost in Israel-propelled wars like Iraq, not counting loss of $trillions in business with the rest of the world because of US support for Israel etc)
  • Federal aid for each resident in Louisiana in 2002 (from their taxes): $1,500
  • Direct U.S. aid for each Israeli citizen in 2003 (per capita income in Israel-$16,710; they do not pay taxes to the US): $581
  • Direct U.S. aid for each Ethiopian citizen in 2004 (per capita income in Ethiopia - $110): $2.50
  • Percentage of U.S. foreign aid that goes to Israel: 27%
  • Population of Israel as percentage of total world population: 0.1%
  • Number of Palestinian minors killed by Israeli security forces (2000-2007): 814
  • Total number of Palestinians injured or killed (September 2000-April 2007): 31,296
  • Number of bullets fired by Israeli security forces in the first week of the second Intifada: 1,300,000
  • Number of unexploded Israeli bombs strewn across South Lebanon after the 2006 war: 1,000,000 or 1.4 per resident
Slightly modified from the 1040 ez tax form available at See this piechart also.


We're Not Broke (1 hour and 20 minutes) Watch it free on-line. America is in the grip of a societal economic panic. Lawmakers cry “We’re Broke!” as they slash budgets, lay off schoolteachers, police, and firefighters, crumbling our country’s social fabric and leaving many Americans scrambling to survive. Meanwhile, multibillion-dollar American corporations like Exxon, Google and Bank of America are making record profits. And while the deficit climbs and the cuts go deeper, these corporations—with intimate ties to our political leaders—are concealing colossal profits overseas to avoid paying U.S. income tax.

WE’RE NOT BROKE is the story of how U.S. corporations have been able to hide over a trillion dollars from Uncle Sam, and how seven fed-up Americans from across the country, take their frustration to the streets . . . and vow to make the corporations pay their fair share.


The Cheating of America: How Tax Avoidance and Evasion by the Super Rich Are Costing the Country Billions - and What You Can Do About It: Charles Lewis And Bill Allison and the Center for Public Integrity

Perfectly Legal: David Kay Johnson

The Fine Print: David Cay Johnston

Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super-Rich–and Cheat Everybody Else: David Cay Johnston

The great American tax dodge : how spiraling fraud and avoidance are killing fairness, destroying the income tax, and costing you: Barlett, Donald L.

America: Who Really Pays the Taxes ? Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele

Home Editorial News Books Blogs Links Feedback