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Author: cjb44 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 1955240  
Subject: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 9:57 AM
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It all depends on where you live and how old you are.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/49807529/

I'd call it "working upper class", where people are still working long hard hours and couldn't just walk away...but I wouldn't compare families at $250,000 or $300,000 to the crowd making several million a year.

I'm think the Schumer plan might be the final compromise. Raising taxes only on the $1,000,000+ crowd. I'm not saying I like that, or think it will make a difference, but I think it has a better chance of passing than the $250,000 number. Of course the question also remains where will the cuts come from?
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Author: TheDope1 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836900 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 10:02 AM
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Actually, Obama's plan will dip down into the $178k range. Bend over and like it, all you libs in high cost of living cities. You wanted it? You got it.

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Author: 10talents Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836928 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 10:50 AM
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Yeah, 250,000 sounds pretty rich to me. I know that different places have different costs of living, but it really seems like 250,000 is a lot of money almost anywhere.

That being said, I wouldn't mind seeing the tax cuts expire for everyone, cut gov't spending, pay off the debt and then cut taxes. I understand that the economy may still be too precarious to raise everyone's taxes right now and it may be too precarious to cut too much gov't spending.

I don't know what income level congress should go with, but I a much prefer to see the debate be about what income level do we raise taxes for and what spending do we cut rather than do we cut spending or raise taxes?

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836932 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:00 AM
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That being said, I wouldn't mind seeing the tax cuts expire for everyone, cut gov't spending, pay off the debt and then cut taxes
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If you think they will cut spending after the taxes go back up, this is your first rodeo.

Mark

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Author: cjb44 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836935 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:05 AM
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I don't know what income level congress should go with, but I a much prefer to see the debate be about what income level do we raise taxes for and what spending do we cut rather than do we cut spending or raise taxes?

___________

Congress/President can't raise taxes enough to cover the spending...but why not looking into increasing revenues and reducing spending by growing the economy?

When a person gets a job, you reduce government spending and increase tax revenue. Here's what is missing from the debate, can you create jobs without spending money? And the answer is yes.

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836946 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:22 AM
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If you are a member of the "circle of trust", 250,000 is barely enough to get by.

If you are a teacher, however... your 75 thousand (pay and benefits) is extravagant and needs to be reduced.

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Author: 99lashes Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836951 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:30 AM
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If you are a teacher, however... your 75 thousand (pay and benefits) is extravagant and needs to be reduced.


Now let's try and be transparent here. How much of that compensation is not taxed at the time it is earned. Benefits, 401K's of various sorts,reimbursement for Continuing Ed, sabbaticals, oh my next thing you know they are below the poverty level in earned income.

When I used to work half time for my local County, 45% of my compensation was estimated by them to be separate from "salary". The pension would pay off greatly if I lived long enough to enjoy and especially so if I could retire early. Now add to that the frequency of a "disability retirement", not all that uncommon for Police, Fire and such then that retirement income is not taxed for life.

All kinds of games for all those "poor folks".

U retired now right, U 1?

99

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836953 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:33 AM
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U retired now right, U 1?

Not yet. Probably in the late spring/early summer.

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Author: cjb44 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836963 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 11:54 AM
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If you are a member of the "circle of trust", 250,000 is barely enough to get by.

If you are a teacher, however... your 75 thousand (pay and benefits) is extravagant and needs to be reduced.

_________________

Two points...first I would say $75,000 a year teachers (pre-benefits here in Md.) live a life closer to the $250,000 per year crowd than the $250,000 crowd is to the $1,000,000 per year.

I'd put both as middle class.

Second is that the teachers are paid for only 9 months work and are paid with tax dollars. So you can't compare a public part-time worker to someone in the private sector.

BONUS THIRD POINT --- the $75,000 a year teacher, does deserve their salary more than the $250,000 a year member of Congress or $400,000 a year salary the President gets.

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Author: nigelwhalmsley Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836984 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 12:46 PM
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Give me ten years at that income and I will have lived a very nice lifestyle and will have saved $1 Million to boot.

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1836988 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 12:51 PM
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Second is that the teachers are paid for only 9 months work and are paid with tax dollars. So you can't compare a public part-time worker to someone in the private sector.

Having been married to a public school teacher, I think I can speak with some knowledge.

1. She left the house at 6:30 a.m. and returned about 6 p.m. Then, on many nights, she graded papers.....

2. She remained in the school for about a week and a half after the school closed for summer vacation, and was there about 2 to 3 weeks before the school opened in the fall. Between those two... there was about a month or five weeks of vacation.

Anyone who thinks that teachers work part time... either doesn't know any teachers, or is acquainted with teachers who don't do their job well.

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837001 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 1:16 PM
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She left the house at 6:30 a.m. and returned about 6 p.m. Then, on many nights, she graded papers.....
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Returned at 6pm? I live near a school. I have a visual of the parking lot as I drive home. Your wife was an aberration.
That being said, teachers DO work full time. They also retire full time and we continue to pay them while they are NOT educating anyone.

I would support a pay raise for ALL teachers (even though most of them don't deserve it) if they would just agree to give up the pensions and save for retirement like normal adults.

Teaching 8 year olds about rectangles is not a $70k/yr + $40k/yr pension + full benefits kind of job.

Worried about math and science? Maybe if we weren't giving the 1st grade Cat in the Hat teachers the same pay scale as AP Calculus teachers......

Mark

PS Don't act like your wife worked in a coal mine. Talking to 15 year olds about Beowulf is not exactly a high pressure situation.

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Author: kenm47 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837158 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 5:48 PM
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"but why not looking into increasing revenues and reducing spending by growing the economy?"

Yeah, I'm sure this never occurred to anyone in the Administration in any manner.

As for the $250K threshold, I agree it's way too low and like to think it's for bargaining. $500K or even a million (for married filing jointly) makes more sense to me.

Ken

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837159 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 5:49 PM
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PS Don't act like your wife worked in a coal mine. Talking to 15 year olds about Beowulf is not exactly a high pressure situation.

You really have no clue, do you?

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837166 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 5:59 PM
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PS Don't act like your wife worked in a coal mine. Talking to 15 year olds about Beowulf is not exactly a high pressure situation.
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You really have no clue, do you?
----------------------------------------------------------------
Good reponse.

Mark

PS Seriously, don't act like your wife worked in a coal mine.

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Author: salaryguru Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837174 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 6:07 PM
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Is $250,000 rich?

That's not really a relevant question. I know that those of you who have your head stuck up the right wing echo chamber believe that the effort to roll back the Bush tax give-aways is an effort on the part of deadbeat liberals to punish the rich, but that's nothing but a bunch of hooey. It has no basis in fact. FuxNews and the echo chamber liars simply made that up. They are trying to sell their pandering to the ultra-wealthy who fund them as an issue of freedom and democracy and they are finding plenty of ignorant tea-baggers who are willing to believe it and fight their battles.

In reality, the fiscal environment (regulations, job market, inflation, investment performance, global competition, etc.) in the US over the past decade or more has dramatically favored the wealthiest Americans. The proof of this is a rapidly growing gap between the ultra-wealthy and the middle class. The very wealthiest Americans have gained an even greater share of wealth and power than they already had while middle class and poor Americans have lost buying power, benefits and services. In short, the very wealthy have thrived and the rest of America is hurting. There are multiple reasons that this situation has worsened over the past few decades. The wealthy have gained more power and influence in government and managed to get regulations written that favor them. We continue to see expansion of global markets over local markets - a development that has made it possible for the wealthiest Americans to expand their wealth at the expense of the working class by transferring jobs overseas (either directly or indirectly). And, of course, the wealthy have enjoyed extremely favorable tax treatment since Bush-Cheney gave away most of the American surplus to them. All of these issues need to be reviewed and addressed if we value a healthy middle class.

In addressing the tax issue, most economists recognize that rolling back tax breaks on the lower and middle class can have a very negative unintended consequence. People who are spending most of what they make are likely to spend less if they make less. This will have a negative impact on the main street economy. Also, if we are trying to preserve a healthy middle class, it doesn't make sense to exacerbate their problems of shrinking buying power.

On the other hand, the wealthiest Americans are making more than they have ever made before. They are not spending even a small fraction of what they make. Instead they are placing their windfalls into personal savings and investments - often in other countries. They have been benefiting disproportionately from the US fiscal environment and not investing the gains in America. A tax on high earners helps to change the formula and insure that a more reasonable portion of their gains come back to this country directly - through a tax rate that has been effective in the past.

It is important to understand that the goal is not to punish anyone. It is to re-balance the fiscal advantages of the wealthy over the working class in order to re-vitalize a suffering middle class. The $250,000 per year figure is somewhat arbitrary, but easily supported by examining which income groups have thrived over the past decade vs which have not.

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837190 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 6:28 PM
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PS Seriously, don't act like your wife worked in a coal mine.

There's nothing in what I wrote that even remotely suggests that I did.

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Author: NemesisToLibs Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837196 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 6:34 PM
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"I would support a pay raise for ALL teachers (even though most of them don't deserve it) if they would just agree to give up the pensions and save for retirement like normal adults.

Teaching 8 year olds about rectangles is not a $70k/yr + $40k/yr pension + full benefits kind of job.
"

What a teacher makes and gets for benefits should be market driven. The government and unions should have 0 to say about it.

I am not one to say what a teacher deserves to make. That should be left to what the market will pay.

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Author: notehound Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837200 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 6:51 PM
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...Obama's plan will dip down into the $178k range. Bend over and like it, all you libs in high cost of living cities. You wanted it? You got it.

TheDope1,

I was going to ask you where you got the above information, but then I found a Commerce Clearing House tax policy report that confirms what you say is true - only the amount might dip down into the $89K range - ouch!

Obama has proposed to allow the current temporary repeal of the Pease Limitation and PEP to expire after 2012. Projected for inflation, the 2013 phaseouts would start for the Pease Limitation at about $178,000 ($89,000 if unmarried filing separately) and for the PEP at $267,000/$178,000. Additionally, Obama has proposed to limit the value of all itemized deductions and certain other tax expenditures for individuals with incomes over $200,000 and families with incomes over $250,000 by limiting the tax value of otherwise allowable.

http://tax.cchgroup.com/downloads/files/pdfs/legislation/can...

There are an awful lot of Obama voters who want to "stick it to the rich" - but who will be mighty unhappy if they figure out that the "rich" to whom they want to stick it - might just include themselves.

$89K is a pretty low threshhold - by "big city" standards, anyway.

;-)

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837214 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 7:28 PM
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I would support a pay raise for ALL teachers (even though most of them don't deserve it) if they would just agree to give up the pensions and save for retirement like normal adults.
Teaching 8 year olds about rectangles is not a $70k/yr + $40k/yr pension + full benefits kind of job.


As I've noted about a bazillion times before, my son pays 11% of his gross salary into his state teachers' pension fund. He does not get to participate in Social Security. He pays about the average American amount for his health insurance, which isn't a gold-plated plan (he is not in a metropolitan school district with professional negotiators).

YOU try teaching 150+ public school students a day. I bet it's a lot harder than whatever it is you do for a living.

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Author: eatenbybears Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837226 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 8:08 PM
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YOU try teaching 150+ public school students a day. I bet it's a lot harder than whatever it is you do for a living.

I use to dig holes .... but there has not been a shovel ready job in so long I just gave up :)

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837246 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/15/2012 9:19 PM
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As I've noted about a bazillion times before, my son pays 11% of his gross salary into his state teachers' pension fund. He does not get to participate in Social Security.
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He doesn't "get to participate" in Social Security? That sounds like the best deal ever.

I understand teachers 'pay into' their pensions. You're missing the point. It's all taxpayer money. So your son gets tax dollars, he gives 11% of them back temporarily, the 11% is matched with more taxpayer dollars and then he gets it back later. It's stupid.

Just pay him $70k and let him figure retirement out for himself. Pensions ALWAYS become a giant black box of bankruptcy because for whatever reason pension administrators are ALL horrible at forecasting future outlays.

I want your son to get paid to work. I do NOT want a eutopian retirement ponzi scheme.

Mark

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Author: alstroemeria Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837275 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 4:24 AM
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You're missing the point. It's all taxpayer money.

How else would public school teachers get paid? Do you think they should be independently wealthy volunteers? When police and firemen are paid, not to mention government contractors getting real small fortunes (Haliburton/Blackwater, computer consulting firms, and so forth), do you complain about their receiving taxpayer money as well, or is it only teachers you resent?

for whatever reason pension administrators are ALL horrible at forecasting future outlays.

Not so. Many are well run, but sometimes the organization underfunds the plan--this is equally true with private company plans as public ones.

He doesn't "get to participate" in Social Security? That sounds like the best deal ever.

I note that SS, in addition to providing retirement annuities, also provides disability and widow/orphan benefits.. One third of SS payouts are for other than worker pension benefits. It happens to be a great deal for individuals and the nation, and I'm glad to be able to apply for my benefit next year--not mooched off my husband's work record either, but my own.

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Author: saunafool Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837278 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 6:12 AM
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I don't think there is any debate that $250,000 goes a lot farther in Mississippi than Manhattan.

However, the tax increase on the table for incomes is 4% of the amount above $250,000 after deductions. So, the couple in Manhattan with their $900,000 apartment will start with at least $50,000 in mortgage interest deductions, along with whatever other deductions they can manage. Their combined income will need to be well over $300,000 before the tax even applies to them.

In any case, let's assume they rent and only have their personal deductions, which is about $12,000 if they are married, filing jointly, and have no children. If they make $300,000 per year, they will pay an extra 4% tax on the last $38,000. That is about $1500 per year more in taxes. This is no going to force them to move to New Jersey.

If they make $400,000 per year, their additional tax burden will be about $5500 per year. At this point it is something, but now the argument is whether $400,000 per year is "rich" and I would say it's better than a swift kick to the nards, no matter where you live.

Sure, no one likes higher taxes. I lived in San Francisco for 10 years and know very well that what seems like a high income in Kansas doesn't mean too much in a big city. I think $350,000 or $400,000 or $500,000 would be an acceptable compromise. Yet, 4% only on the amount above $250,000 isn't going to break anyone's back. It's not going to force anyone to, god forbid, send their kids to public school or shop at Walmart.

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Author: Frydaze1 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837373 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 12:12 PM
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Actually, Obama's plan will dip down into the $178k range. Bend over and like it, all you libs in high cost of living cities. You wanted it? You got it.

Is Southern California, just an hour outside of LA, considered a high cost of living city? I think most people would say so.

I make less than half of that, and have enough to support two people and get a little (not much) money into savings each month. You're trying to scare me by saying that people making $178k might have a little more of it go to taxes and threby not be able to survive? Really? I have no idea what your income is, but if you consider $178k to be the brink of poverty with no wiggle room, I'm impressed.


Frydaze1

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837382 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 12:30 PM
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You're trying to scare me by saying that people making $178k might have a little more of it go to taxes and threby not be able to survive? Really? I have no idea what your income is, but if you consider $178k to be the brink of poverty with no wiggle room, I'm impressed.
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There it is folks. It has been laid out for you in plain english. "You don't get to complain about taxes until it puts you on the brink of poverty. You still have food and shelter. Stop complaining capitalist pig".

It is stunning to behold but there it is. That is where we are going. You knew it the moment Obama referred to tax cuts giving him "hundreds of thousands of dollars that I don't need". No one actually needs $100,000 or $10,000 or even $1,000. All you need is housing and food.

"There are people in need out there sir. How dare you sit there with your house and two cars and your ski boat and $530,000 in cash and investments. HOW DARE YOU!!! Take it from them. Take it all. Leave them only with what is needed to survive."

These people are pure communists whether they know it or not. They have no interest in freedom.

Mark

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Author: Frydaze1 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837409 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 1:05 PM
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There it is folks. It has been laid out for you in plain english. "You don't get to complain about taxes until it puts you on the brink of poverty. You still have food and shelter. Stop complaining capitalist pig".

TheDope implied (with his "bend over and like it" statement) that $178k was the brink of poverty. I said it wasn't. And you've decided to extrapolate that into outer space somewhere beyond the Milky Way. Can you actually write a post without the hyperbole? Are you aware that it's not necessary to take every statement to extremes? I've now read about 10 posts of yours. You don't seem to be interested in honest discussion, only in extremes for the purpose of crap stirring. It's pathetic.

My point, which you have chosen to misinterpret, is that I am making less than half that and NOT on the brink of poverty. If I were making more than twice what I make now, I could easily afford an extra percent or two of income tax. Actually, I can afford it now if necessary and voted for an additional property tax in my local election even though that does, in fact, take more taxes from ME. So his "Bend over and like it" statement is boloney. It's not bending ANYONE over.

Also, and please someone correct me if I'm wrong (that's directed to people who ACTUALLY know something, not your hysterical ranting self), that $178k would be AGI, wouldn't it? Which means the actual income is probably much higher. In fact, probably closer to the $250k of the OP.

So back to the original question: Can someone making $250k afford to pay an extra 2%? (Hint: They could a few years ago, before the temporary tax rate reductions.)


Frydaze1

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Author: markand4504 Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837426 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 1:26 PM
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So back to the original question: Can someone making $250k afford to pay an extra 2%? (Hint: They could a few years ago, before the temporary tax rate reductions.)
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Can someone making $250k afford to pay an extra 60%? (Hint: yes they can they would just have to downsize). So if it's a good idea to raise taxes by 2% because certain people can afford it, why is it NOT a good idea to raise taxes by 60% on those same people if they can afford that as well?

Mark

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Author: Frydaze1 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837428 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 1:29 PM
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Can someone making $250k afford to pay an extra 60%? (Hint: yes they can they would just have to downsize). So if it's a good idea to raise taxes by 2% because certain people can afford it, why is it NOT a good idea to raise taxes by 60% on those same people if they can afford that as well?


Again with the extremes. Come back with something other than a strawman and we'll have a discussion.


Frydaze1

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Author: ramsfanray Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837633 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/16/2012 7:58 PM
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I'd call it "working upper class", where people are still working long hard hours and couldn't just walk away...but I wouldn't compare families at $250,000 or $300,000 to the crowd making several million a year.


Just don't compare them to the folks making under 50K a year either.

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Author: Knighted Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837806 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/17/2012 2:28 PM
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Well, the one silver lining in Obama's war on the rich is that a large number of the $250k+ crowd are liberal elites living in the likes of California, and they will be impacted disproportionately because of California's high living costs. A person living in a low cost state such as Montana making $125k has about the same spending power as someone living in California making $250k, but thet $250k-er is going to be taxed a lot higher.

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Author: Gingko100 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837847 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/17/2012 4:34 PM
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My taxes - which are steep in CA - don't affect my spending (because I live on well less than I earn and spend frugally) or my hiring (because I hire based on work flow and demands on my time, not taxes).

We have a progressive tax system, not a flat tax. All we are arguing about is where the completely arbitrary line is drawn. There is no magical difference between the various numbers that are being bandied about. It's a lot of hysteria over nothing. Call it 20%, 25%, 35% on the incremental difference over $250K - it doesn't matter that much, except people like to complain. But people always like to complain about taxes. It could be an argument between 2%, 5% and 7% - or 1%, 0.1% and 0.001% - and people would still be complaining.

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Author: Rightime Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837851 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/17/2012 4:46 PM
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Well, the one silver lining in Obama's war on the rich is that a large number of the $250k+ crowd are liberal elites living in the likes of California, and they will be impacted disproportionately because of California's high living costs.



Even more Californians would be effected if the Bush Tax Cuts (with Obama extensions) are allowed to expire.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/uploads/middle...

(see map Pg. 2)

So why not just let them expire and collect your welfare?

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Author: NemesisToLibs Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837857 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/17/2012 5:00 PM
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". There is no magical difference between the various numbers that are being bandied about."

It amazes me the people like yourself who comes across intelligent can be so shortsighted and more interested in fairness(whatever that means) then what WILL work.

When it comes to tax policy, we should be looking at what is most efficient tax system that will do two important jobs.

1. Maximizing tax revenue.

2. Creating a strong economic environment for strong growth.

So, how do we maximize tax revenue?

We know that regardless of tax rates over the last 80 years the US has only collected an average 18.3% of GDP in tax revenue. Today, We are collecting ~16% of GDP. For those bad in math, this is only 2.3% from the average. In other words, it 2.3% of GDP in additional tax revenue or 368 billion in potential additional tax revenue per year. During Bush's term, we hit this magical number of 18% of GDP without any tax increases.

The answer is a tax system that has the broadest base of income tax payers. Everybody, except those, who are incapable of working should pay income tax.

The left likes to blame the Bush tax cuts for the deficit, while the real answer is that 47% of employed Americans who pay no income taxes. Everyone should have teeth in the game. No excuse.

If every employed person is paying taxes then we can legitimately lower the tax rate for everyone This will generate more tax revenue then we currently collect today i.e. a more efficient and predictable taxing system. 2. It will have zero negative consequences on economic growth and likely will spur new growth.

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Author: Gingko100 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 1837864 of 1955240
Subject: Re: Is $250,000 rich? Date: 11/17/2012 5:24 PM
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Everybody, except those, who are incapable of working should pay income tax.
On this we agree.

can be so shortsighted and more interested in fairness(whatever that means) then what WILL work.
I'm speaking specifically of the tax effect on my OWN income, spending and hiring. Changing the top rates has had no impact on how I act. None. These rates have gone up and down. Doesn't affect my spending or my hiring. It's just a small bit more off the top. I don't see it as the primary driver in any of my decision making either in my personal planning or my business planning. The only thing it has changed is that I have been doing Roth conversions the past few years as a tax shelter. But as far as my behavior in business and personal life? No change if it's up or down.

The macro argument I will leave to the rest of you.

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