October 05, 2010
ARTHUR LAFFER: The Bill Gates Income Tax
The Bill Gates Income Tax
If Washington's most famous billionaires are really worried about their state's finances, they'd write personal checks to the government and leave everyone else alone.
Framed on a wall in my office is a personal letter to me from Bill Gates the elder. "I am a fan of progressive taxation," he wrote. "I would say our country has prospered from using such a system--even at 70% rates to say nothing of 90%."
It's one thing to believe in bad policy. It's quite another to push it on others. But Mr. Gates Sr.--an accomplished lawyer, now retired--and his illustrious son are now trying to have their way with the people of the state of Washington.
Mr. Gates Sr. has personally contributed $500,000 to promote a statewide proposition on Washington's November ballot that would impose a brand new 5% tax on individuals earning over $200,000 per year and couples earning over $400,000 per year. An additional 4% surcharge would be levied on individuals and couples earning more than $500,000 and $1 million, respectively.
Along with creating a new income tax on high-income earners, Initiative 1098 would also reduce property, business and occupation taxes. But raising the income tax is the real issue. Doing so would put the state's economy at ris
Posted by jcmount at October 05, 2010
12:31 PM | Email This
The problem for WA State is that people do not pay fair, equitable and reasonable property taxes for all the services they demand. WA residents don't pay enough, and properties -- based on the extraordinary growth in values -- are not fairly and evenly assessed.
Income taxes unfairly tax the productive person.
Property taxes fairly tax people according to what they have at stake in the nation.
WA residents pay something like one-quarter of what East Coast residents pay, yet they carp about wanting to have "real cities". In many instances, they demand far more Government based assistance than any East Coaster is accustomed to!
Washingtonians need to look themselves squarely in the mirror and stop trying to pick each others pockets. If you want service, then pay for it.
Put up. Or shut up. As they say at the poker table....
The solution, then, is to not demand much from governemnt. I don't. I'm OK with us not having "real cities" in Washington if it means we don't have a Neo-socialist income tax.
For those that want to have their incomes taxed, please feel free to send a check to the Washington Department of Revenue. You can use Google to get the address. This is also where all of your "wealth re-distribution" guys and gals can use your own money to re-distribute your wealth to the state's government.
Happy trails to you, until we meet again!
I'm a agreeing with you.
I don't need a "real city" either.
All I need is an internet connection.
But for those who want more service, tax yourselves and your properties...not my income!