Bert Ernie wrote:
bdog wrote:So that's the rub - how are you going to actually raise taxes and not have the rich run off to some other environ that has a different playing field?
I've reflected on that very issue. I believe any vacuum created by people trying to avoid investing in the idea of community -- those who would rather bolt and dodge -- would quickly be filled by others. I can't get behind the "do what we say, or we'll pick up and move our businesses elsewhere" bullying.
First of all, lets recognize that the issue isn't just the 'tax rate'. Its the overall tax policy. The tax policy allows for all kinds of exemptions, which is why the 2 billionaires in question pay income tax some years and not others. A tax rate of 90% doesn't capture any revenue if we allow enough loopholes.
Some of those loopholes are probably a good idea, if it promotes investment that improves the economy. But its reasonable to question that policy if a billionaire pays $0.
In another post, we learned that that the state legislature required a cost comparison for outsourcing. Which was good, because we learned that consultants cost more than in-house staff. But then decided to ignore the conclusions, and keep the over-priced consultants. Can we fix that?
So lets do a similar analysis of our state tax policy. Which 'loopholes' are really just giveaways, and which ones are useful? And then demand that we act on that analysis.
We know that at the federal level, we've had a strong economy at 90% rates and a shitty economy at today's record low rates. I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that raising rates is automatically good. But we can conclude that raising the top rate isn't necessarily going to destroy the economy or send all 'job creators' running off to Monaco.
We have to get away from labeling every exemption as a 'giveaway' and every tax hike as 'socialist'. Drop all the idealogical trash talk, and look at things pragmatically.