I’m surprised that today’s Wall Street Journal story on income inequality failed to mention that while the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans earned 21.2 percent of all incomes in 2005, they now pay nearly 40 percent of all taxes.
In 1980, before the Reagan supply-side tax-cut revolution was launched, the top 1 percent earned 8.5 percent of all income and paid 19.1 percent of all taxes. So while the rich are getting richer, the rich are also paying the lion’s share of the taxes.
As others have pointed out, the top 5 percent of income earners pay 60 percent of the taxes. The top 25 percent pay 86 percent of taxes. And the top 50 percent pay 97 percent of all taxes.
It kind of puts a different spin on the WSJ story, doesn’t it?
You'd think that all those "equality of outcome" people would be outraged at this obvious "taxation inequality" that clearly discriminates against the "rich", i.e. the most productive among us.
Ok, forget that. It's unrealistic because it expects some degree of logical consistency from the left.
Fine. You'd think that there would be some gratitude or appreciation for that productive 50% of the population who work hard, pay up to 40 % of their income in taxes, and basically support programs that help the other 50%.
But it is never enough for the left, who are compelled by their ideology to despise the most productive people in society and to stoke the flames of hatred and envy.
Remember this exchange between Humphrey Bogart and Edward G. Robinson from the movie Key Largo?
Johnny Rocco: There’s only one Johnny Rocco.
James Temple: How do you account for it?
Frank McCloud: He knows what he wants. Don’t you, Rocco?
Johnny Rocco: Sure.
James Temple: What’s that?
Frank McCloud: Tell him, Rocco.
Johnny Rocco: Well, I want uh . . .
Frank McCloud: He wants more, don’t you, Rocco?
Johnny Rocco: Yeah. That’s it. More. That’s right! I want more!
James Temple: Will you ever get enough?
Frank McCloud: Will you, Rocco?
Johnny Rocco: Well, I never have. No, I guess I won’t.
The gangster Johnny Rocco is a perfect symbol for a side of the thuggish political left they don't care to ever acknowledge. Their behavior is a lovely mixture of both the grandiosity of the selfish Johnny Roccos and the idealism of the the classic malignant utopian.