Harry says rich want to pay more taxes

Harry Reid has said a lot of outrageous and funny things over the years, but his funniest comment may have been on KNPR this week when he said the rich want to pay more in taxes.

Harry Reid

“The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The rich know that. The rich are willing to pay more. They’re not the ones out here saying please don’t tax me. But the only people who feel there shouldn’t more coming into the federal government from the rich people are the Republicans in the Congress. Everybody else, including the rich people, are willing to pay more. They want to pay more,” Reid said.

Everybody is just all too happy to pay more taxes to help cover the $3.7 trillion in welfare the federal government alone has shelled since Obama took office — that’s means tested welfare and does not include Social Security and Medicare. That’s more than twice what we’ve spent on two wars since 2001.

A Cato Institute analysis found that in Nevada — where the minimum wage of $8.25 an hour is a dollar higher than the federal minimum — a person on welfare could rake in the equivalent of $14.34 an hour. Of course, everyone is willing to pay more in taxes for those on the dole, especially since a majority of American households pay no federal income tax — or received an earned-income tax payment as part of the $55 billion paid out this past year, a quarter of which was fraudulent. That’s democracy in action. Majority rule.

36 comments on “Harry says rich want to pay more taxes

  1. Mike C. says:

    If they want to pay more, then why don’t they? Why do they continue to hire accountants and tax lawyers to help them minimize their taxes. There’s nothing stopping anyone, rich or otherwise, from paying more than their minimum tax liability.

  2. Vernon Clayson says:

    Depends on the meaning of rich but who knows what it means to Harry ‘The Red’ Reid, the definition is probably ricocheting around in his brain with all the other class warfare objectives he has in mind. Whatever the hell his definition is the fact of the matter is that if you work your taxes go up every year, to say nothing of the tax bombshell coming with the laughably labeled ‘Affordable’ Care Act.

  3. Harry should just write a check to the Treasury.

  4. nyp says:

    Ah, Mr. Mitchell is just trolling here. Remember, his definition of “welfare” includes tax credits, Pell Grants, assistance to people with Cerebal Palsy, nursing home care, breast cancer screening, etc., etc.
    All of that fits into his definition of bad, bad welfare.

    In the real world, non-healthcare safety net expenditures amounts to approximately 13% of the federal budget.

    PS: I know a bunch of really rich guys. Most of them say they would have no objection to paying a bit more in taxes if there was a corresponding adjustment in federal spending.

  5. nyp says:

    Oh, by the way – about that Cato Institute “study”: it assumes that every single poor person receives each and every one of the services for which he or she is theoreticall eligible. But that is not true. For example, for every 100 poor families, only receive TANF benefits. And most of those who do, receive them for very short period of time, due to federal time limits that have been in place for many years. And of those receiving TANF, only 16 percent also received housing assistance. Yet the “study” assumes that poor families have ready access to all possible forms of assistance.

    On the other side of the ledger, it also incorrectly assumes that working poor families do not receive any form of assistance other than refundable tax credits.

  6. Athos says:

    You could confiscate all the money the “rich” have, and only prolong the inevitable – flat broke.

    All of Bill Gates money ($66 Billion) wouldn’t pay for 1day of DC spending. And then Billy would be broke and on the dole!

    The money has to come from the ” middle class working stiffs, and all it would do is put off our eventual collapse.

    And the more we delay the cuts, the more pain will be felt at the end.

    It’s not a question of if, but when.

    And Yellin can print all the trillion$ she wants, you can’t fight math. It has no political allegiance.

  7. Milty says:

    “Most of them say they would have no objection to paying a bit more in taxes if there was a corresponding adjustment in federal spending.”

    A corresponding adjustment up or down?

  8. Nyp says:

    Most would like to see cuts in Medicare spending, cuts I’m farm subsidies, cuts in Social Security. Most of the really rich guys I know also want more spending on transportation infrastructure and on education, although they hate the teachers’ union and want charter schools, etc.

  9. Milty says:

    Nyp: Regarding your rich friends, are they willing to pay more taxes unconditionally, or is it all dependent on getting the specific reallocations in spending that they want?

  10. Steve says:

    The gift that keeps on taking, Harry Reid.

  11. Rincon says:

    Fact check: According to a Brown University study, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq have cost us $6 trillion so far. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Financial_cost_of_the_Iraq_War
    Thomas, on the other hand, says that we’ve spent less than $1.85 million. Someone’s way off. Are the figures for welfare spending equally questionable?

    You’re also missing the big story. According to Think By Numbers, The U.S. spends more than twice as much on corporate welfare as on traditional welfare! I’m sure their figures are just as valid as those of Sessions. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/25/government-subsidies-corporations_n_1912835.html Once again, you complain about welfare for the poor, but remain silent on welfare for the rich.

    Education is also a form of welfare, of course. A true Conservative would have people pay for their own childrens’ educations and not pay for it through socialism.

    Nevertheless, I agree that we spend way too much on welfare. There are ways to reduce welfare spending dramatically and equitably. Unfortunately, I hear no answers from this crowd, just complaints. And of course, nothing but silence regarding corporate welfare and unfair tax deductions for the rich.

  12. Steve says:

    I believe I once posted that people on unemployment should be made to work at any wage and the difference of their wage from the unemployment payments would be made up by that same insurance. Incentive to hunt for a better job would also count to the total payouts.

    One thing is certain, finding a job while still gainfully employed is much easier than it is once out of work and on full unemployment. The idea above would have people partially gainfully employed and keep them in the game while looking for the job they really need or even climbing the ladder in the low wage place that they land.

    Thing is I made this statement before, Rincon. You are wrong to claim no one is offering any solutions. Many offers exist in abundance, its simply liberals who refuse to acknowledge and counter with a real negotiation. ALA Harry “the bill is DOA in the Senate” Reid.

  13. Milty says:

    Back on October 22, Mr. Mitchell posted his latest entry on SolarCity thriving on taxpayer money.

    As part of the dialog in response to this posting, Rincon wrote, “If Tea Partiers are concerned about corporate welfare, let them say so. They’re so busy fretting about poor people and clean energy subsidies, I’m not sure they’re aware of anything else.”

    I’m assuming that Rincon considers the taxpayer money provided to SolarCity to be a clean energy subsidy. I would consider it to be part of the corporate welfare system that he derides and wants to be rid of, and I would agree that it does need to be gotten rid of.

    So what is SolarCity’s taxpayer money, Rincon? Is it corporate welfare or a clean energy subsidy?


  14. Nyp says:

    Milty – most are not that clear-headed on the matter. But the general sentiment is that most rich guys in the northeast financial community would trade a few points of tax rate for what they see as entitlement reform — i.e., cutting Medicare expenditures for the likes of Vern Clayson and Thomas Mitchell.

  15. iShrug says:

    No need to raise taxes if everyone is clamoring to pay more, right? Anyone who wishes to help out can visit http://www.treasury.gov
    Just send contributions to help pay national debt.

  16. Nyp says:

    IShrug – as you know, that is a moronic argument.

  17. Milty says:

    If voluntarily paying additional taxes is moronic, then why does the government allow it and have a program set up to facilitate it?

    Wait a minute, never mind, the question just answered itself.

    Sorry I asked.

  18. Nyp says:

    To help identify morons.

  19. No, Rincon, the Brown study projects the two wars “will” cost $6 trillion by 2050 after all the costs of disabilities and veterans’ benefits.


  20. Then by all means … means test Medicare.


  21. Actually, iShrug, I can’t find a link at treasury.gov telling me how to write that voluntary check. Harry tell them to add that so “everybody” can contribute more.


  22. Milty says:

    It would be a lot more efficient if employers direct deposited our entire paychecks into the US Treasury, then had the government allocate money to us based on what they think we should be allowed to have for ourselves.

  23. That is where we are headed, Milty.


  24. Steve says:

    You missed an important part of that, Milty.

    First raise the mandatory minimum wage to $1,000,000 for every citizen and tax it at 100%.

    THEN it would be far more efficient for the government to allocate to the populace what is determined the populace “needs” are.

    You get everything liberals could ever want, absolute central control and a whole bunch of confirmed millionaires taxed to the teeth!

  25. Milty says:

    Woo hoo, I have a full time job, so I’ll be making $2,08B a year before taxes.

  26. After taxes, you’ll be making $0.00.

  27. Athos says:

    After all, if their is no Creator, then how can man have any inaliable rights?

  28. Rincon says:

    Thanks for the correction Thomas. I was indeed comparing apples to oranges. The proper Brown University figure was 3.2-4 trillion. Although the estimates don’t agree, they are at least within shooting range of each other.

  29. Rincon says:

    What I’m saying is that this family is an example of a rising tide failing to lift all boats.
    While productivity in this country has more than doubled since 1983, the median family income has only risen about 25%.

    WEhen we look at income separated by quintile income group, it’s obvious what has happened. http://go.bloomberg.com/multimedia/americas-growing-income-gap-shows-two-recoveries-in-action/

    You guys are in the ridiculous position of claiming that the rich deserved a big, fat raise over the past 30 years, while the bottom 80% deserved a pay cut. How do you justify that?

    If this woman had received a raise equal to the average productivity gain, then paying rent wouldn’t have been a problem at all.

  30. OK, Rincon, how would you accomplish your “fair” distribution of income?

  31. Rincon says:

    Remove all tax breaks, make all welfare (in all its forms) recipients work for their money, get medical costs under control, and put all welfare except medical welfare into a single program for better transparency and lower costs. Put the maximum income tax rate at 39.5%. Restore the death tax. Make union formation easier for low wage workers, harder for high wage workers (I just thought of that one. I’m not sure it would be workable). Loosen up local zoning laws to allow lower income housing to be built. Allow residents to rent out part of their dwelling if they live in it without unnecessary restrictions. Drug and alcohol testing for welfare recipients.
    Concentrate of providing a quality education for everyone. Among other things, I would like to see high school graduation at age 16, more focus on trade school type education, give students better information on the job market before they select a career nand restrict scholarships in overcrowded fields. Abolish tenure for teachers and institute merit-based pay raises. Give businesspeople and others with practical knowledge a major role in curriculum design.

    Safety net must be adequate: Food, shelter, medical care, and education.

    I think that’s a good start.

  32. Athos says:

    One big, happy family (of 308 million members).

    Makes for a heck of a reunion!

  33. Rincon says:

    One more: Women of childbearing age on welfare all get a Norplant.

  34. Don Bittle says:

    I say we test Harry just one time. Congress should pass a Tax premium that equals the percentage of deficit spending. You complete your tax form, determine your taxes due and then add say 40-percent to determine the amount you owe. Everyone who has to pay taxes now is probably considered rich in Harry’s mind, and we would all be paying “just a little more”. One year of this and we would have sanity in the Federal budget.

  35. Athos says:

    Don, 40 percent of 0 is still zero. And what of the Earned income credit?

    Fair tax is the best way to go.

    Or everyone pays 17 percent, even welfare people, every month like a car payment. No longer making employers be tax collectors. We’re all involved.

  36. Rincon says:

    I hadn’t thought of people on welfare paying income tax, but I think I like it. If they worked for their welfare money, then a portion could be taken out for government services, i.e., tax. If they didn’t work for the money, it wouldn’t be as good, since the welfare payments would have to be larger just to pay the tax, making it a wash.

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