Posted by Curt on 2 July, 2007 at 9:40 pm. 6 comments already!


Another fat cat liberal decries the fact that he is allowed to make so much money and pay his secretary only 60 thousand dollars a year.

Woops, guess this article didn’t say that.  Silly me.  What it does say is that Warren Buffet, the 3rd richest man in the world is hopping mad that he is only taxed at a 17% rate while his 60 grand a year secretary is taxed at 30%.

Speaking at a $4,600-a-seat fundraiser in New York for Senator Hillary Clinton, Mr Buffett, who is worth an estimated $52 billion (£26 billion), said: “The 400 of us [here] pay a lower part of our income in taxes than our receptionists do, or our cleaning ladies, for that matter. If you’re in the luckiest 1 per cent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 per cent.”

Mr Buffett said that he was taxed at 17.7 per cent on the $46 million he made last year, without trying to avoid paying higher taxes, while his secretary, who earned $60,000, was taxed at 30 per cent.

I don’t hear the rich socialist liberals like Hillary Clinton getting upset about a man who is worth 52 billion only paying his secretary 60 grand, but that’s beside the point.  This is a free society and he has every right to pay what he chooses.  What I question is this figure of 30%. 

Well, I don’t question it as much as think it’s pure lunacy.  There is no way a person making 60 grand a year can be paying at a 30% rate.  Investors Business Daily agrees:

Sounds unjust, if true. But we don’t know what tax system Buffett is looking at. It certainly isn’t the one we use here in the U.S. We went to the IRS’ Web site and used its tax calculator. We put in various incomes, from $50,000 to $350,000 a year — the latter being quite a bit for a secretary to make in Omaha.

So there’s no funny business, we gave this fictional person no deductions other than the personal one. That is, no IRAs, no 401(k)s, no children, no mortgage, no nothing. Virtually no one fits that profile, but at least we can’t be accused of skewing the data.

Here’s what we found: At $50,000, the IRS asks for 13.5% of your income. At $75,000, it’s 17.3%. You can keep going all the way to about $350,000 before you’re in spitting distance (28.4%) of what Buffett’s secretary supposedly pays.

Only if you add in the 6.2% that employees pay for Social Security — which would be cheating, since if she started working before 2000 she’ll get that money back — can you reasonably come close to 30%. And that kicks in at an income of just over $190,000.

Going farther then the Investor Business Daily, Larry Elder had some tax professionals on his radio show today and went through a bunch of different scenarios. 

  • A single women with no kids, with no IRA contributions, and takes a standard deduction, her rate would be 15.7%. 
  • A single women with one kid, a 4 grand IRA deduction, and takes the standard deduction, rate is 8%
  • A single homeowner with two kids, a 4 grand IRA deduction, and this time she itemizes 10 grand, her rate is 4.8%.
  •  A married homeowner with two kids and a unemployed spouse, itemizes with a IRA deduction, her rate would be 2.4%.

Add in state income taxes you would still not get anywhere near 30%.  Now the only way it could be close is if her spouse made 120 grand and they just claimed a standard deduction.  Combined they make 180 grand.  But nowhere in his speech does he allude to that, in fact he makes it perfectly clear she only makes 60 grand.

This is just a typical liberal tactic of using class envy to generate support among the poor.  Why lower taxes to put more money into the pockets of the poor when you can raise taxes and give out more welfare.  Get them on the rolls and they are Democrats forever.

All about power.

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