Innovation Ohio Facebook Innovation Ohio Twitter Innovation Ohio Instagram

· September 25, 2012

Redistribution Truth: Top 21% Gets Lion’s Share of Tax Breaks

The word “redistribution” is one of those right-wing buzzwords meant to elicit nightmares of communism and socialism here in the U.S.A. It’s a one-word fear tactic. It’s a canard, much like the “freedom” straw man routinely set up and knocked down by Tea Partiers and others. Put simply, every tax – and subsequent government expenditure is a redistribution. Income tax collected, a needy child eats better, a road gets repaired or an FBI agent tracks down a serial killer. Simple. What is scary is how conservatives and the GOP have pulled the wool over so many eyes regarding taxes and spending. In the two charts that follow you can see for yourself how tax benefits are “redistributed.” Thanks to Jared Bernstein for making this simple:
So far, pretty good. Entitlements – things like Social Security and Medicare – appear to be distributed pretty fairly.
                                          But there is another sort of entitlement – tax expenditures – sometimes referred to as “tax breaks,” “write-offs” and “loopholes.” These are the gimmicks written into our tax code or cleverly gamed by lawyers and accountants that allow top income earners like Mitt Romney to reduce their tax bill from the 35% top rate all the way down to zero in some cases.                                            

Related Content

Tagged in these Policy Areas: