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Financier, Tax Thyself

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Donnachaidh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-23-11 02:06 PM
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Financier, Tax Thyself

It's a brazen show of hypocrisy: while low-income families pay up to a 10% sales tax on necessities, wealthy investors who nearly crashed our economy pay ZERO sales tax on their financial purchases.

Politicians seek creative ways to balance the budget, but they stubbornly refuse to consider even a tiny sales tax on the financial purchases of their friends in the business world. Instead they choose measures that are effectively taxes on the middle-class: cutbacks in police and fire departments, mental health clinics, and libraries; new fees on transportation and city services.

The financial transaction tax (FTT) is a sensible tax, an obvious tax. It would help guard against the reckless speculation that contributed to the financial meltdown. And as demonstrated in England, it is easier to administer than federal income taxes.

How much revenue could be generated by an FTT? According to the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR), at least $150 billion a year, which is about the size of all 50 state budget deficits combined. Another CEPR analysis estimated a return of $353 billion. A study by the Chicago Political Economy Group concluded that $537 billion could be generated annually by an FTT. That equates to 15 million jobs at $35,000 per year, which could put all unemployed Americans back to work fixing America's highways and water systems and energy grids.

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