Originally Published: October 8, 2011 9:31 p.m.
In response to the letter of Oct. 2 from Mr. Furlong, his misrepresentation of the facts cannot be left unchallenged. I am one of Obama's "wealthy" in that I make the $200,000 threshold. However, Mr. Furlong infers that any wealthy person is deriving his income from capital gains, not ordinary income. Hence, the lower tax rate (remember that the capital gains tax is a tax on money that has already been taxed as corporate income). That is simply not true for many of us "wealthy" people.
I have been fortunate in that I have been able to accumulate some wealth. However I am still working at the age of 71 and will continue to do so because I enjoy it. My income comes from a salary (ordinary income per the IRS). On this income, I am currently paying over 45 percent to government entities. So, my question to Mr. Furlong is, how much should I pay in taxes to be "in compliance" with your idea of "fair"? If we truly were on a "fair" system, everybody would pay something in taxes, not have 50 percent of the people pay nothing but get all the services provided by government (leaving the other 50 percent to pay for 100 percent of everything).
If we ever reach the 70 percent levels as once happened in our country, the motivation for me to keep 30 cents of every dollar earned will force me to consider other options. This most likely will include some way to shelter my dollars in a way (legally) that the government cannot touch. Is this your idea of fairness to me and those like me?