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Some Millionaires Not Paying Taxes: Good for Them or Good Grief?

SodaHead News 2011/08/09 20:00:00
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With our economy seemingly on the verge of another major meltdown and the new debt ceiling deal firmly in place with no new revenue-generating tax hikes on the nation's highest earners, you might be curious to know about this little tidbit that ABC News dug up over the weekend.

As it turns out, according to the IRS and ABC News,1,470 American millionaires paid … wait for it … no federal income tax in 2009.

What the..what?!

It seems those folks were able to use a series of deductions, write-offs, subsidies and loopholes, as well as donating to charity, investing in local and state government bonds and making most of their cash overseas.

And while they're only a fraction of the nation's 230,000 millionaires, at a time when we're borrowing nearly 40 cents of every dollar we spend because not enough tax revenue is coming in, every penny adds up.

It's not like those almost 1,500 millionaires didn't pay any taxes, they just didn't pay any to our government because they likely wrote checks to foreign governments from their overseas investments.

They've got plenty of company, as fully 46 percent of American households will not pay federal income taxes this year or receive refunds. But they're off the hook because of low incomes, credits for children and other dependents and exemptions.
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Top Opinion

  • abubincrazy 2011/08/09 20:37:09
    I think this news is ...
    abubincrazy
    +15
    More class warfare bullsh@t.
    LOTS of people don't pay their taxes.
    It's just tougher to demagogue a guy making 40k who doesn't cough up his tribute to Caesar.
    The people pushing this rhetoric ARE millionaires and billionaires.
    They're playing the dumb masses for suckers.

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  • andrea 2011/09/12 16:51:27
    Good grief
    andrea
    they should pay more taxes than the average, thats insane!
  • Hamilton 2011/08/23 02:23:35
    I think this news is ...
    Hamilton
    Not telling the whole truth.
  • ««Gingey, the Master Debate... 2011/08/12 06:34:31
    Good grief
    ««Gingey, the Master Debater of Þ|-|Дэ†»»
    +1
    Yes, because they were already handed everything in life, so now they should get handed even more...
  • JCD aka... ««Ginge... 2011/08/12 08:35:07
    JCD aka "biz"
    +1
    300,000 Israelis took to the streets last saturday, they chanted "PEOPLE BEFORE PROFITS!" and "THE PEOPLE WANT SOCIAL JUSTICE!".
    When will American people take to the streets?
  • mike j 2011/08/12 03:13:40
    I think this news is ...
    mike j
    Well either these 1470 people are lawbreakers or they are not , lets just say they are not lawbreakers but have been forthright and honest in their tax reporting , this being true , then the problem is with the IRS and Congress that wrote the tax law , there is nothing illegal or immoral with following the law to the letter . If you have a gripe about the 1470 , dont take it out on them, call your Congressman and get the IRS law changed , expect just about any change that affects taxes to affect your tax bill too.
  • Sister Jean 2011/08/11 22:58:59
    Good grief
    Sister Jean
    +1
    I heard about 150,000 including GE
  • Lodessa Esmeralda 2011/08/11 19:40:13
    Good grief
    Lodessa Esmeralda
    You live in a country were you want more. You want more and complain because you can't get it. You can't get it because you need more. It's a big ugly circle, and GOD DAMN IT just pay your taxes and stop complaining. Things could get worse, and you know it.
  • doc 2011/08/11 19:28:38
    I think this news is ...
    doc
  • Michael B Free 2011/08/11 17:57:45
    I think this news is ...
    Michael B Free
    My question is why didn't GE pay any taxes as they moved plants to China and made 3 billion in profit while collecting billions from obama for alternative energy sources and the CEO is one of Obamas Jobs Czars...supposedly helping create jobs here yet most that GE has created are in China at the cost of Jobs in our own country. The millionaires already pay close to 80% of the total Income Revenue in this country while 46% pay nothing.

    Fairness would be everyone working paying their share.
  • Freddie Reis 2011/08/11 17:16:49
    Good grief
    Freddie Reis
    +1
    As someone has said, taxes are the price we pay for civilization. Of course milluionaires should pay taxes, to help support the country that allowed them to prosper, if for no other reason.
  • lm1b2 2011/08/11 14:29:04
    Good grief
    lm1b2
    +3
    This just proves that we do have the very best government you can buy,after all they had to buy the Republican Party to maintain their tax free status,that must have costs plenty,don't you think?
  • Zeruke 2011/08/11 05:53:44
    Good grief
    Zeruke
    everyone should pay taxes......but it would be good to be a flat tax
  • the fuze 2011/08/11 01:02:35
    I think this news is ...
    the fuze
    incomplete, please give us a list of who these people are and their political leanings... I just want to see how it balances out.
  • Stephaniee 2011/08/10 19:14:28
    I think this news is ...
    Stephaniee
    stupid they should pay more
  • Rex 2011/08/10 19:04:48
    I think this news is ...
    Rex
    Pleaaaaasssseeee - have of this entire nation doesn't pay taxes - good grief.
  • Freddie... Rex 2011/08/11 17:20:16
    Freddie Reis
    +1
    Not true. The people who don't make enough to meet the tax threshhold, or who are on Social Security still pay sales taxes, payroll taxes, property taxes, excise taxes, etc. Please do a little research before passing on this myth.
  • Rex Freddie... 2011/08/11 17:49:47
    Rex
    Not a myth at all.
  • Siefimn 2011/08/10 19:00:58
    I think this news is ...
    Siefimn
    +2
    Every citizen should pay taxes. Over 50% of American citizens now pay NO TAX, There should be no income tax on anyone; there should be a federal sales tax. There should be NO LOOPHOLES, NO EXCEPTIONS, NO EXEMPTIONS. That way everyone pays their fair share; even the bank robbers, the bums that won't work, the dope dealers and even the prostitutes and pimps and everyone that does their work under the table.
  • JCD aka... Siefimn 2011/08/12 08:32:44
    JCD aka "biz"
    Wrong. They pay no income tax, but pay other taxes.
  • Master 2011/08/10 18:54:42
    Good grief
    Master
    +3
    This is not really NEWS news, as millionaires and billionaires have been paying less-and-less since 1980. The previous (Dubya) presidential administration, and the current (Obama) administration---run by the same people---have been giving Big Money a free ride, at our expense.

    If they bent their energies to helping America, and Americans: THAT would be NEWS!!
  • Buster 2011/08/10 18:53:19
    I think this news is ...
    Buster
    Old news is old.
  • Elizabeth Young 2011/08/10 18:29:27
    Good news
    Elizabeth Young
    +1
    of course they should they are no better than we are
  • Valentina 2011/08/10 18:16:59
    Good grief
    Valentina
    +1
    i know! and f**k them
  • TheNightFly 2011/08/10 17:58:07 (edited)
    I think this news is ...
    TheNightFly
    ... good but irrelevant. Nobody ever got rich or poor without government help.

    Eliminate monopolies, abolish the patent system.
  • ReasonOverFaith BN - 0 2011/08/10 17:52:42
    Good grief
    ReasonOverFaith BN - 0
  • Master ReasonO... 2011/08/10 18:57:54
    Master
    +1
    Is that an expensive wine? I hope it is a white wine...
  • Freddie... ReasonO... 2011/08/11 17:21:34
    Freddie Reis
    The Rich would corre ct that to read "choice of whine."
  • Morgan Orlins 2011/08/10 17:43:42 (edited)
    I think this news is ...
    Morgan Orlins
    +1
    SHNews, you need to do a BETTER job of explaining why this happens! C'mon guys, you're in a position of trust and authority!

    Many VERY wealthy people pay no income taxes at all because they don't EARN an income. Some of them have inherited wealth, and they invest as explained in the article.
    Some have built and sold successful businesses, and are sitting on a pile of cash, NOT income.

    Others--like Warren Buffet--recognize very little income in order to avoid high income taxes, but have tremendous investment wealth. They pay taxes at a lower rate on those investments. THEN Warren turns right around and calls for higher income taxes!

    Mr. Buffet, your SUCH A F$%^#NG HERO!!
  • Rage 2011/08/10 17:42:00
  • James 2011/08/10 17:33:16 (edited)
    I think this news is ...
    James
    +1
    The top 10% pay 90% of the income taxes as it is. If the tax code allows them these preferenced write offs, then change the code. They are bound to pay no more than the law requires. The lower 50% of income earners pay no income taxes. Is that fair or reasonable. I posit not.
  • JS 2011/08/10 17:28:12
    Good grief
    JS
    Don't they feel special.
  • smileyseven 2011/08/10 17:28:04
    I think this news is ...
    smileyseven
    I think the more you make of taxable money, the more you should have to pay in taxes.
  • ♌βļąƈʞƦơșƐ3033♌ 2011/08/10 17:14:18
  • jasmine1 2011/08/10 17:12:42 (edited)
    Good grief
    jasmine1
    +2
    Very wealthy people live off investments. These investment profits are subject to capital gains tax which is at 15% not income tax. Therefore, if they receive $1,000,000 a year, their tax bite is $150,000 minus deductions for whatever, charities, etc. If Barry really wanted to tax the rich, as he proclaims, he would just raise the capital gains tax for people making over a certain limit. He doesn't even consider this so what does this tell you.
  • Tony 2011/08/10 17:03:03
    Good news
    Tony
    +1
    when you consider that the Federal Government has absolutely no sense when it comes to spending and finance. I wouldn't trust them to balance my checkbook.
  • Prime Time Lime 2011/08/10 17:00:11
    I think this news is ...
    Prime Time Lime
    +1
    Taxes should be paid on a sliding scale with the ones that make the most should be paying the most.All loopholes should be closed and the rich pay their fair share.That is the right of living in a capitalist country.
  • Shigyrl... Prime T... 2011/08/10 17:07:46
    Shigyrl but outspoken on my future
    +1
    How about a fair tax. Where everyone pays the same flat rate and no one avoids paying taxes. Rather then basing it on who makes the most money.
  • Prime T... Shigyrl... 2011/08/10 17:10:30
    Prime Time Lime
    +1
    Because there would be more tax revenue for the government to run if the rich were more heavily taxed,and the loopholes for the rich are closed.
  • Shigyrl... Prime T... 2011/08/10 22:37:07
    Shigyrl but outspoken on my future
    So the key for all of this is that you are jealous of the rich and you want them to have to pay for the governments continued irresponsible behavior. If there is a flat tax dear there would be no loopholes. No one would get a reprieve in paying. They would just give the government a certain percentage of their income. I hope you realize that what you want the rich to do is just plain wrong and evil.
  • Rex Shigyrl... 2011/08/10 19:08:34
    Rex
    +1
    There you go - that is what a reasonable person would think - good for you!
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