Saturday, November 18, 2017
Friday, November 17, 2017
Trump’s Tax Proposal: Class Warfare
– Bill Barclay
The Trump/GOP “Unified Framework” tax plan has something for everyone – if by everyone you mean the wealthy, corporate and non-corporate businesses and the alt-right. The plan embodies both the neoliberal class warfare that believes poor people have too much money and rich people have too little money and connects with the social conservative politics that the Trump and the GOP draws upon to mobilize its supporters.
Class Warfare: I
Some of the class warfare politics of the Trump/GOP proposals are obvious; others less so. The proposal provides a small tax cut for households in the bottom three quintiles, ranging from about 0.5 – 1.2% of after tax income in all cases well under the $1,182/family income boost claimed by Rep. Paul Ryan. At the upper end of the income pyramid, the story is much different. Over half of the total tax cuts for individuals will accrue to the top 1% of households, boosting their after tax incomes by 8.5%. Of course, life can be even better: the top 0.1% households would grab an average tax cut of almost $750,000, capturing over 30% of the total tax cuts for families and individuals.
And Trump has not neglected people like himself. He – and others in his income and wealth sphere – will gain in three ways from the changes in the individual income tax. First, the elimination of the alternative minimum tax (AMT): in 2005, Trump paid $38.4 million on income over $150 million – but without the AMT he would have paid only $7.1 million.