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Old 09-13-2010, 06:34 PM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
17,531 posts, read 24,687,243 times
Reputation: 9980

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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalCroozer View Post
EFFING BREAK! Sure it's not "rich" but $250K in America will still earn you a very comfortable standard of living considering most Americans make FAR less than that. I agree that these people should not be taxed unfairly and the government needs to go after the celebs, athletes, and rich fooks like Bill Gates and CEO of companies who are making millions of millions hand over fist but don't sit there and act like we should feel sorry for those people making $250K when poverty is going up in America. This country is fast becoming a banana republic. Even the rich are too stupid to realize that it seems like.

Even in the third world state of Kaifornia $250K will provide you with an above average standard of living.
Sure Aint poor
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:37 PM
 
4,173 posts, read 6,684,994 times
Reputation: 1216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
The math for $121 paid for $397K income is 30%. I assume that's after a lot of deductions as well.
In all fairness, when people talk about tax rates, they mean the marginal tax bracket they are in. Stan4 is in 33% marginal bracket -- see (2010 Federal Income Tax Brackets and Marginal Rates). Effective tax rates will be lower.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalCroozer View Post
...... Show me a rich man who isn't trying to reduce his apparent income to the IRS, and I'll vote him in as Pope.
Show me rich/middle class / poor man who isn't legally trying to reduce his apparent income and I will show you an idiot.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:46 PM
 
2,409 posts, read 3,040,337 times
Reputation: 2033
Quote:
Originally Posted by JazzyTallGuy View Post
In a capitalist system those that take the biggest risk tend to get the biggest rewards. You can all it game but so is football, basketball and baseball. People who play those "games" extremely get amply rewarded based on their ability to perform and their skill .

In any capitalist marketplace you are going to have people who take advantage of buying something at a low price and selling it at a higher price and vice versa whether it's Walmart, or the New York Stock Exchange. Speculation is an essential part of capitalism and makes markets more efficient, competitive and liquid.


The current economic trends DO NOT FAVOR WAGE EARNERS. You are literally in competition with everybody that can do the same thing that you do. If you job involves a product that can be shipped or a skill where information can be transmitted in received you are a global competition that currently does NOT favor American workers. I'd suggest you own a business or have a skill that adds value to whoever your clients or customers' are. The current economy rewards risk and it rewards skill. It does not reward working for a wage. That has now become a COMMODITY.

LMAO! You've nailed it on the head...........labor has become a commodity. And that is the entire problem with the US economy. hahaha............And we wonder why the French riot to protect their pensions and doctors in Greece are being arrested for throwing their shoes at the Prime Minister. At least those evil European socialists stand up for the worker. By the way we don't have capitalism.........if we did there wouldn't have been any bailouts. GM, Citi bank, Fannie and Freddie etc. etc. would have gone bankrupt years ago. We have fascism state corporatism in America.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:51 PM
 
Location: Boilermaker Territory
26,404 posts, read 46,544,081 times
Reputation: 19539
Quote:
Originally Posted by lifelongMOgal View Post
It's nice to live in the fly-over zone where that kind of money will buy a couple hundred acres with home and outbuildings.
I would never invest in RE in Missouri. Appreciation is non-existant.
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Old 09-13-2010, 06:51 PM
 
3,599 posts, read 6,781,054 times
Reputation: 1461
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smash255 View Post
That would be 30%.....

Secondly, are you married, do you have any kids?

Did you itemize your deductions (include property taxes, mortgage interest, etc) or take a standard deduction?
You "regular" folks need to understand the AMT and how it affects most people in this tax bracket. It hits the majority of people making $200-500K, expecially in high income tax states like California, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Dc.

The Alternative Minimum Tax

You can "patch" the AMT as much as you want, but it was never indexed for inflation and that's it's major downfall. It was supposed to be for the "super rich" who avoided taxes altogether. But because it generates so much revenue for the government, no one knows what to do with it. It literally is a "free cash" cow for the government on the backs on people the tax was never intended to hit. Everyone knows it but is afraid to do anything permanent about it.

The AMT disallows "normal deductions" like personal exemptions (so having lots of kids actually puts in in jeopardy of being launched into the AMT territory) , property taxes, even home equity loans interest deductions (not used for home improvement). It allow "taxes" previously tax exempt muni bonds. It raises your long term capital gains taxes from 15% to 20%.

Bill Clinton raised the flat tax on AMT by 2% already in 1993.

All my brother's and sisters who live in California and Maryland get hit with the AMT. Yes they all make between $300K-700K. Each one of their AMT "extra" taxes is between $5000-20,000 each year. Can you imagine having a $15000 property tax bill that Uncle Sam says you can't deduct. Or having 4 kids you can't use as a deduction.

That's why I really don't understand this class divide and this magical number of $250K. $250K and up is a comfortable living. Don't get me wrong.

But we need to factor in inflation. Look at the 1980's when making "six figures" meant one was rich. Well in my opinion you today's 2010 standard you better be in at least the mid-to high six figure range to be very well off.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:01 PM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,052 posts, read 84,442,711 times
Reputation: 27720
The AMT has been hitting a larger number of middle class folks each year.
I have been hit with the AMT and you have to pay the larger of the two calculations.

Alternative Minimum Tax - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"The AMT operates as a parallel tax system to the regular tax system with its own definition of taxable income, exemptions, and tax rates. It was originally called the "millionaire's tax", in that it targeted only the wealthiest households. The income triggers were not indexed for inflation so as incomes rose the AMT touched more of the middle class. Without periodic Congressional action to temporarily raise the income limits that trigger the AMT, almost a quarter of the United States' 90 million taxpayers could be required to pay the tax."
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:02 PM
 
Location: Long Island (chief in S Farmingdale)
22,180 posts, read 19,449,121 times
Reputation: 5297
Quote:
Originally Posted by aneftp View Post
You "regular" folks need to understand the AMT and how it affects most people in this tax bracket. It hits the majority of people making $200-500K, expecially in high income tax states like California, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Dc.

The Alternative Minimum Tax

You can "patch" the AMT as much as you want, but it was never indexed for inflation and that's it's major downfall. It was supposed to be for the "super rich" who avoided taxes altogether. But because it generates so much revenue for the government, no one knows what to do with it. It literally is a "free cash" cow for the government on the backs on people the tax was never intended to hit. Everyone knows it but is afraid to do anything permanent about it.

The AMT disallows "normal deductions" like personal exemptions (so having lots of kids actually puts in in jeopardy of being launched into the AMT territory) , property taxes, even home equity loans interest deductions (not used for home improvement). It allow "taxes" previously tax exempt muni bonds. It raises your long term capital gains taxes from 15% to 20%.

Bill Clinton raised the flat tax on AMT by 2% already in 1993.

All my brother's and sisters who live in California and Maryland get hit with the AMT. Yes they all make between $300K-700K. Each one of their AMT "extra" taxes is between $5000-20,000 each year. Can you imagine having a $15000 property tax bill that Uncle Sam says you can't deduct. Or having 4 kids you can't use as a deduction.

That's why I really don't understand this class divide and this magical number of $250K. $250K and up is a comfortable living. Don't get me wrong.

But we need to factor in inflation. Look at the 1980's when making "six figures" meant one was rich. Well in my opinion you today's 2010 standard you better be in at least the mid-to high six figure range to be very well off.
Its more than just comfortable living, its the top 2-3%.

BTW, I live in a high COL area (Long Island), even here someone making $250,000 + is doing VERY well. Its a little more than 2.5 times the median household income.

Also as far as the increases at the $250,000- $500,000 level, the average increase is going to be $538.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:16 PM
 
15,061 posts, read 8,622,286 times
Reputation: 7413
Quote:
Originally Posted by formercalifornian View Post
There are 65 homes available right now in the River Hill neighborhood of Columbia and a few more on the west side of Rte. 108 from $500-750k. This beauty just sold for $710k. Take a close look. It has more 3,000 sq. ft. of living space and an in-ground pool for goodness sake!
Stop ...

How much do you need to earn to qualify for a 750,000 home? The 1/3 rule would be ..... drum roll .......... $250,000 annual income! (225K with 10% down)

So now this is the new symbol of being stinking rich ... to be able to dip your dirty arse in your backyard swimming pool? I guess us middle class folks should be satisfied with one of those blow up baby pools ... but we dare not drink an imported beer while frolicking in one, else suffer the tax collector's ire.

Look ... right down the street from me there are some very old homes ... 50, 60 year old places that go for 500K and UP ... and believe me ... the rich people of Austin Texas don't live there. Out west ... Lake Austin ... Lake Travis area ... that's where they live .... 1.5 to 6.5 Million and up ... (1.5 Mil is the starter home for the lower end of wealthy but ya gotta start somewhere, right?) depending on the view and size of the lot, and what type of elevator they have that they can ride down the cliffs to their boat docks ... OK? The 250K wage earner couldn't afford their taxes if they were given the house as a gift.

250K may make you a wealthy king amongst your fellow 35K slaves, but you'll not be invited to join the Austin Country Club ... which, by the way, is not exactly Augusta National.

Sorry ... but as one poster (can't recall who at the moment) said .. it's all relative .... to me ... 250K would be like winning the lottery, and I could live very easily in Austin on that. Very comfortably .... but compared to those whom I referred to previously ... we wouldn't be playing golf together.

Most people have NO CONCEPT of the wealth that actually exists out there in the real world, because they cannot comprehend such amounts ... never seen it ... never touched it ... never considered the possibility.

You see ... us slaves go to 7/11 and buy a lottery ticket occasionally, hoping, but not really expecting to win 10 Million ... and if we did ... we would consider ourselves wealthy beyond imagination. On the other side of the tracks ... many of these corporate execs win their lottery for 10 or 20 Million in the form of an annual BONUS CHECK ... over and above the 30 Million they already got paid that year. Get it? The real wealthy people don't receive 250k per year ... they make that in a week, and then some.

Hell, you have the NFL player that makes 10 Million per year ... but then there are the OWNERS of the teams that actually pay 61 of their players these salaries, while flying around in their private jets negotiating deals. Do you think that Player is wealthy compared to the Owner who pays him this?

There are people in this world who are so wealthy, they literally cannot physically spend themselves broke ... their fortunes are increasing more rapidly than they could ever deplete it .... and there are those out there who hire people just to keep track of everything they own ... they can't even remember all of their assets themselves. That's wealthy.

250K can allow you to drink as much of that $125 a bottle good scotch as you might care to ... but the real wealthy drink scotch that's $250 a shot, I know, because I've had a little, and believe me it's all relative.

A sleeping bag is a luxury to a homeless person.
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:33 PM
 
5,747 posts, read 12,048,379 times
Reputation: 4511
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyNTexas View Post
Stop ...

How much do you need to earn to qualify for a 750,000 home? The 1/3 rule would be ..... drum roll .......... $250,000 annual income! (225K with 10% down)

So now this is the new symbol of being stinking rich ... to be able to dip your dirty arse in your backyard swimming pool? I guess us middle class folks should be satisfied with one of those blow up baby pools ... but we dare not drink an imported beer while frolicking in one, else suffer the tax collector's ire.

Look ... right down the street from me there are some very old homes ... 50, 60 year old places that go for 500K and UP ... and believe me ... the rich people of Austin Texas don't live there. Out west ... Lake Austin ... Lake Travis area ... that's where they live .... 1.5 to 6.5 Million and up ... (1.5 Mil is the starter home for the lower end of wealthy but ya gotta start somewhere, right?) depending on the view and size of the lot, and what type of elevator they have that they can ride down the cliffs to their boat docks ... OK? The 250K wage earner couldn't afford their taxes if they were given the house as a gift.

250K may make you a wealthy king amongst your fellow 35K slaves, but you'll not be invited to join the Austin Country Club ... which, by the way, is not exactly Augusta National.

Sorry ... but as one poster (can't recall who at the moment) said .. it's all relative .... to me ... 250K would be like winning the lottery, and I could live very easily in Austin on that. Very comfortably .... but compared to those whom I referred to previously ... we wouldn't be playing golf together.

Most people have NO CONCEPT of the wealth that actually exists out there in the real world, because they cannot comprehend such amounts ... never seen it ... never touched it ... never considered the possibility.

You see ... us slaves go to 7/11 and buy a lottery ticket occasionally, hoping, but not really expecting to win 10 Million ... and if we did ... we would consider ourselves wealthy beyond imagination. On the other side of the tracks ... many of these corporate execs win their lottery for 10 or 20 Million in the form of an annual BONUS CHECK ... over and above the 30 Million they already got paid that year. Get it? The real wealthy people don't receive 250k per year ... they make that in a week, and then some.

Hell, you have the NFL player that makes 10 Million per year ... but then there are the OWNERS of the teams that actually pay 61 of their players these salaries, while flying around in their private jets negotiating deals. Do you think that Player is wealthy compared to the Owner who pays him this?

There are people in this world who are so wealthy, they literally cannot physically spend themselves broke ... their fortunes are increasing more rapidly than they could ever deplete it .... and there are those out there who hire people just to keep track of everything they own ... they can't even remember all of their assets themselves. That's wealthy.

250K can allow you to drink as much of that $125 a bottle good scotch as you might care to ... but the real wealthy drink scotch that's $250 a shot, I know, because I've had a little, and believe me it's all relative.

A sleeping bag is a luxury to a homeless person.
Apparently, you have missed my point. People who make money faster than they can spend it are irrelevant to the discussion, and their existence doesn't make a family earning $250k middle class.

The median income for a four-person household in the U.S. last year was ~$70k. During the same period, the median house price was highest in the northeast at $263,800. The lowest was in the south at $156,300. I think those numbers are more relevant to the discussion.

Last edited by formercalifornian; 09-13-2010 at 07:47 PM..
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Old 09-13-2010, 07:39 PM
 
22,768 posts, read 30,719,635 times
Reputation: 14745
Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyNTexas View Post
While I understand your points and where you are coming from ... I have to tell you that the problems and the beneficiaries of the ponzi scheme you have identified are not the $250K earners. These "earners" may be fortunate enough to have capitalized on the system to a degree, but the true beneficiaries measure their gains in Millions and Billions ... not hundreds of thousands.

You certainly see the problems correctly, but are misidentifying the culprits .. why? Because the culprits have done a very good job of creating this illusion for you to chase.

The reality is that the top 1/2 of the top 1% are raking in Hundreds of Billions ... the bottom half of that top 1% ... Hundreds of Millions ... and neither group shoulder any debt burden or tax burden whatsoever.

The $250kers having actually broken into the top 2% category are simply proof of just how poor the other 98% have gotten as the top 1% have pillaged and plundered the rest of the country into bankruptcy and financial slavery.

As this once great middle class America is destroyed entirely .... with the last ones being the $250kers, there will be only the Millionaire/Billionaire Madison Avenue crowd, and the rest of us. And taxing those $250kers won't do us a lick of good ... they are a very small bunch, and if you taxed them at 100% ... it wouldn't even register on the economic scale.

But I do think we should do the following:

Repeal the Federal Reserve Act, and declare the debt to them null and void under RICO statutes. Seize their assets, and create the United States Central Bank under the authority of US Treasury Department and congress as it was meant to be. Re-issue United States constitutional currency pegged to gold and silver. Terminate the IRS, and create a new Revenue Authority under the control of the United States Central Bank and US Treasury.

Institute a new Federal Tax system that is constitutionally compliant, which would eliminate personal income tax on wages and earnings, and apply tax liabilities to which the constitution requires but is not being done now ... read: tax foreign commerce ... all of the Multinational Corporations that now pay no tax whatsoever ... as well as all incomes generated from foreign commerce.

Consider constitutional amendments that would: permanently prohibit running budget deficits that exceed 15% of the REAL GDP, and not the phony cooked books GDP they use now; require import export trade balance, and prohibit a trade deficit with any country that exceeds 20%. And, consider, and leave up to general referendum by state, a new flat income tax of 10% on personal income profit that exempts each individual 2.5 times the current Cost of Living Index upfront. That way, everyone lives as a free person ... and those who who are fortunate enough to reap sizable gains well above the high averages, can contribute to the general welfare fund for those disabled and unable to care for themselves.

Apply generous tax exemptions directly proportional to a corporation's United States employment numbers, penalizing offshore manufacturing and production and rewarding onshore work and production ... (You'd see Millions of jobs and manufacturing plants popping up all over).

Recall troops and shut down bases in the 140 countries currently running our budget into the ground, and reduce military spending by 70%, with returning service personnel to be incorporated back into the civilian infrastructure-peace time workforce. Maintain rapid deployment troops, current air defenses, and navy at 50% of current numbers (they aren't needed, when you have the capability to take out entire countries with nuclear weaponry if threatened by them).

Eliminate private donations of any kind to the federal election process and require all elections to be publicly funded.

These steps would create a new post industrial revolution and return the USA to it's leadership role in the world economy and technological advancement ... eliminate unemployment ... create budget surpluses ... and restore integrity to the federal government.


I think that is a good post. I agree with much of what you say, but I think you slightly miss what I am saying, which is limited to an evaluation of what is currently on the table: repeal this particular tax, or not.

If I'm playing make believe, then I want to make tax burdens based primarily on environmental impact to public lands, creating a tremendous tax burden on solid waste, liquid waste, hazardous waste, and energy, for example. But that's another thread.

Last edited by le roi; 09-13-2010 at 07:48 PM..
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