If income equality exists as described, the picture is that of wealthy Wall Street bankers and brokers as well as corporate Titans who earn extravagant salaries. They pay little or nothing in taxes due to favorable loopholes in the US Tax Code.
A study by James Pierson of the Manhattan Institute found that in 2010:
- Of the 119M households filing tax returns, 1.1M were in the top 1% of the income distribution.
- The top 1% received 15% of national income before taxes.
- $307k qualified a person to be in the top 1%.
In 2010, the IRS seized $900B in individual income taxes, $350B coming from the top 1% (or 38.8%). That same year, the top 1% earned 36% of their income from salaries and wages. 22% came from businesses, farms, and partnerships, while 19% came from capital gains.
Who are these people whose exorbitant salaries place them in the top 1% of US wage earners? In 2004 and 2005:
- 30% were salaried executives at nonfinancial business;
- 14% were physicians;
- 13% worked in finance; and,
- 8% were lawyers.
Of the 110k households in the top 0.1% (forget the other 99.9%), 41% were business executives. Only 18% worked in finance.
What's this mean?
The vast majority of the top 1% earned salaries in small and medium-sized businesses, not large financial firms. Moreover, the top 1% includes an expanding number of athletes, entertainers, and coaches. For example, the minimum NBA, NFL, and MLB salary is sufficient to put every player in the top 1% automatically.
It would be more honest if President Obama and his minions in the mainstream media painted an accurate picture of the top 1% and how much they pay in federal taxes. After all, they have access these data, just as The Motley Monk does.
But, apparently, the data present an inconvenient truth. What President Obama and his minions in the mainstream media hope is that the sheeple don't do their homework.
Let the discussion begin...
To read James Piereson's op ed in the Wall Street Journal, click on the following link:
"The Truth about the 'One Percent'."