Issues you haven’t heard discussed in the campaign, 1: Clinton, on fair taxes


Slide from the Motley Fool on Clinton’s tax plan; slide is from 2015, Clinton’s position isn’t changed much. She knows what needs to be done.

With an assist from Warren Buffet.

This is wholly purloined from the campaign website for Hillary Clinton (unless otherwise noted), just to try to get a little discussion going on the real issues of the campaign.

Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub may do an entire series on issues not yet discussed, less than a week before the vote. Consider it public service, in the spirit of Fillmore, who remained ever conversant in public affairs and anxious to take a role to push for policies to improve America, as he saw it — and who, supported by his wives, founded the White House Library, the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society, and the University of Buffalo (now SUNY-Buffalo) to further knowledge.

It’s outrageous that multi-millionaires and billionaires are allowed to play by a different set of rules than hardworking families, especially when it comes to paying their fair share of taxes.

Hillary, January 11, 2016

Hillary Clinton believes that we need an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top. But when it comes to taxes, too often the wealthiest and the largest corporations are playing by a different set of rules than hardworking families.

Hillary is committed to restoring basic fairness in our tax code and ensuring that the wealthiest Americans and large corporations pay their fair share, while providing tax relief to working families. That’s not only fair, it’s good for economic growth, because she will use the proceeds to create good-paying jobs here in America—and make bold investments that leave our economy more competitive over the long run.

As president, Hillary will:

  • Restore basic fairness to our tax code. Hillary will implement a “fair share surcharge” on multi-millionaires and billionaires and fight for measures like the Buffett Rule to ensure the wealthiest Americans do not pay a lower tax rate than hardworking middle-class families. She’ll close loopholes that create a private tax system for the most fortunate, and she’ll ensure multi-million-dollar estates are paying their fair share of taxes. Read the fact sheet
  • Close corporate and Wall Street tax loopholes and invest in America. Hillary will close tax loopholes like inversions that reward companies for shifting profits and jobs overseas. She will charge an “exit tax” for companies leaving the U.S. to settle up on their untaxed foreign earnings. She will close tax loopholes that let Wall Street money managers pay lower rates than some middle-class families. And she’ll reward businesses that invest in good-paying jobs here in the United States. Read the fact sheet
  • Simplify and cut taxes for small businesses so they can hire and grow. The smallest businesses, with one to five employees, spend 150 hours and $1,100 per employee on federal tax compliance. That’s more than 20 times higher than the average for far larger firms. We’ve got to fix that.
  • Provide tax relief to working families from the rising costs they face. For too many years, middle-class families have been squeezed by rising costs for everything from child care to health care to affording college. Hillary will offer relief from these rising costs, including tax relief for Americans facing excessive out-of-pocket health care costs and for those caring for an ill or elderly family member.
  • Pay for ambitious investments in a fiscally responsible way. Hillary believes that we can afford to pay for ambitious, progressive investments in good-paying jobs, debt-free college, and other measures to strengthen growth, broaden opportunity, and reduce inequality. Hillary will use the proceeds from ensuring the wealthiest and the largest corporations pay their fair share to pay for these investments without adding to the debt.

Read the fact sheet


What do you think? What do your numbers show?

More, not from Clinton’s campaign:

13 Responses to Issues you haven’t heard discussed in the campaign, 1: Clinton, on fair taxes

  1. mkfreeberg says:

    Respond to what? The only response that was needed here, was to “the accusations made by conservatives…that liberals and democrats have no idea what ‘fair share’ is.” Your response was to haul out a bunch of shopworn complaints about the status quo (at least one of which objectively doesn’t apply, since we do have a progressive income tax in this country already…our liberals insisted on it). You never did demonstrate that you & yours have any idea what this “fair share” is. What you did demonstrate, is that when liberals get what they want, they still aren’t happy. They fail the Salt Test.

    B-U-U-U-T…we knew that already.

    So what’s this business with me being the one who has no response? What, you’re just borrowing some “let’s see you defend it” arguing techniques from Tim Kaine? That did not work out well for him.


  2. Ed Darrell says:

    I don’t find it funny at all that you have no response.

    Typical fogging that passes for discourse among so-called conservatives and so-called libertarians, I suppose, but distinctly unhelpful.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. mkfreeberg says:

    It’s funny, in a sad way, because I asked about what WOULD be fair. In fact, I made an accusation — echoed the accusation, to be more precise — “that liberals and democrats have no idea what ‘fair share’ is.” And you link to a piece that provides six “answers” which are just more tired complaints about the way things are. The complaints are static against the passage of time; they could have been written on a scroll and buried in a vault, BEFORE FDR was inaugurated, then excavated and reproduced here word for word. Inequality is being exacerbated through preferential treatment toward the wealthy; we need a progressive tax system that takes more from those who are richer; our system disproportionately benefits those who have done better; etc.

    Liberals get all these accolades for having, or at the very least being more receptive to, new ideas. They actually have very few of these, and the “new ideas” they do support are concerned mostly with winning elections and persuading voters to consent to things of which they normally would not approve. Indeed, the whole debate about taxes has remained substantially unmoved for most of the last century and it boils down to: Should our tax system be based on emotions like jealousy, guilt, anger & resentment?

    I’m glad your prediction didn’t work out for you, and the “Don’t tax out of anger” party won the election. I can’t blame you for dodging the very pointed question about details. If I were an advocate for making tax policy based on anger, I would be inclined to conceal details too.


  4. Ed Darrell says:

    And, no, I don’t wish to debate it. I wish stiff-necked misanthropists and so-called conservatives would accept the facts and work from there, rather than “debating” and denying the facts, calling everyone names, and giving dudgeonly rants as if they know more than God about how things work.

    But, rather than let false claims stand and confuse people, I’m happy to discuss.

    Better than letting people believe false things, and vote that way. (See “Dunning Kruger Effect.”)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ed Darrell says:

    Economist Jared Bernstein offers a short list of points a fair tax system should have:

    This word “fairness” keeps coming up around tax day, particularly in discussions around the Buffett rule.

    Many have questioned what I and others mean by “fair.” I’ve got five answers. A fair tax system should be:

    1. Progressive: those with more income pay a larger share of it in taxes;

    2. One that doesn’t exacerbate inequality by giving preferential treatment to the wealthy (e.g., by favoring capital over labor income);

    3. One that doesn’t disproportionately benefit those who are already doing the best at the expense of the rest;

    4. One that raises enough revenue from those with lots of resources to provide a leg up for those at a disadvantage;

    5. One that does not rearrange the pretax income distribution, as in a confiscatory, highly redistributive system.

    Of course he has much more to say, that we should consider especially now it looks like Trump’s cabinet will be the most Great Depression-prone since Hoover’s.

    “What’s fair? Five (or Six) principles of a fair tax system.”

    Among other things, Bernstein points out that the top income categories pay a larger share of income tax because they take a much larger share of income, and particularly a larger share of the benefits our economy has gotten from increases in efficiency and other work improvements, made by workers, for which the workers are not compensated.

    Fair day’s wage for a fair day’s work, but not a fair day’s taxes, workers pay more.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. […] Well, I hope I’ve seen the last of it. I’ve put up with my share of the goading, pre-election…one occasion comes to mind from the fifth… […]


  7. mkfreeberg says:

    Oh you wish to debate that, do you.

    I don’t see how we can. We don’t know the full extent of what she put on that server. We do know she started using the server in the first place because she didn’t want the American people to find out what she was doing. We know she lied about the classification level of what went through the server.

    Generally, what we do know is just enough to substantiate the severity of her crime, and also the fact that she’s sufficiently well-connected to avoid justice (others, who have jeopardized far less sensitive information assets in far more innocuous ways, have not been able to do this). Also, that she was “extremely careless” and said a lot of things, knowingly, that turned out not to be true.

    What we don’t know, is a lot of things that might limit the severity of the crime committed. So the talking point that “Hillary committed no crime” or “Hillary did nothing wrong” doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. But who cares. She’s finished. At least, as you said, Trump’s not likely to w– oh, oops.


  8. Ed Darrell says:

    Not at all. Needed to discuss them more.

    Not even you believe email use is a crime. You know better.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. mkfreeberg says:

    Evidently, Hillary needed these issues to be discussed even less.


  10. mkfreeberg says:

    And here was me, mistakenly thinking it was you who brought up the “fair share” issue as an issue. No wait, I just double-checked, this is the correct post, the correct thread — you, and Hillary, did just raise it: “It’s outrageous that multi-millionaires and billionaires are allowed to play by a different set of rules than hardworking families, especially when it comes to paying their fair share of taxes.” Why, then, does the burden fall to me to provide the definitions?

    I will provide an interpretation instead. This is a conflict between reason and emotion, those thinking on the “issue” emotionally having been provoked by catchphrases such as “make the rich pay their fair share.” It’s easily proven. You say “More work necessary,” but liberals have been insisting on, and getting their way with, “income redistribution” for how many decades in our country? And when did Mother Nature ever say it was necessary for income to be redistributed?

    And, going on the premise that it somehow is necessary, but thinking on it with reason and leaving our minds open to reassessing the idea, how do we fairly evaluate? Eighty years of democrat demagogues reassuring us, in every single election cycle, “I’ll be the one who finally makes the rich pay their fair share”; we should be reading this as a clue, should we not?

    I do agree with you, Trump is unlikely to win. I also agree that issues such as this, have not been discussed as much as they should have been. I see a connection between those two things; Hillary has benefited greatly from an election process in which she has not been pressed to explain exactly what she’d do to the country, partly because of her gender and partly because of her opposition. But, it’s the voters who decide. If they want to keep chasing this “make the rich pay” rainbow for an additional eighty years and think emotionally rather than logically, that’s their decision. They’ll have to learn how wrong it is, from their own experience, like they always have. In the meantime: You will agree with me, will you not, that we’ll be seeing a democrat demagogue talk about “mak[ing] the rich pay their fair share” and “more work needed” in 2020? And 2024? And 2028 and 2032 and and and and….


  11. Ed Darrell says:

    P.S. Long time no hear. You just figured out Trump’s not likely to win?


  12. Ed Darrell says:

    Do you have evidence that the middle class and other working people now do not get their income redistributed to people in the top tax brackets?

    Please show numbers.

    Did Obama work to fix things? Yes.

    Did the fixes work? Workers got a raise in pay, on national average, in 2016 — for the first time in how many years?

    No, the problems of wealthy benefiting from income redistribution have not all been solved. More work necessary.

    What’s a “fair share?” Wonderful question. What do you propose, and what makes it more fair than a tax rate that invests in America’s future, instead of Mitt Romney’s Bahamas bank accounts?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Morgan K Freeberg says:

    I’m seeing here that as of three years ago, Obama had already done quite a lot to make sure the rich paid their fair share.

    Are you now agreeing with the accusations made by conservatives and Republicans, quite frequently, that liberals and democrats have no idea what “fair share” is, and it merely means some significant amount greater than whatever the rich are paying at the time the expression is used? Seems unavoidable, as far as concessions go. Hillary’s platform, from what I see, is largely indistinguishable from the bullet points in Al Gore’s platform back in 2000, or her husband’s back in 1992; probably it could’ve been the democrat platform, mostly unmodified, any campaign year all the way back to FDR and maybe further than that. Looking forward to you possibly covering that aspect of it in your upcoming miniseries.


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