2018-01-31 I Typically Don’t Talk Politics But…

The State of the Union? I didn’t watch it. I don’t need to. It’s all gone to hell.

Last night a friend of mine on FB made a very good post after the speech. I liked it and commented on it. 👍🏻 Everyone knows that opens the magical FB door for future notifications for other people’s comments. So I was notified when someone also commented.. with an altering opinion.

This person, who is a complete stranger to me, commented “Rich People pay nearly 87% of all individual federal income tax in America”.

I typically don’t engage in political rhetoric on social media because there really is no reasoning with people. Truly. But it was 3AM and I was awake and I clicked on the link for the supporting article and after that, I was compelled to respond. What happened after that will not shock or amaze anyone. We exchanged several comments and, as predicted, neither of us is changing our opinion.

Here is the exchange…

Me: If you dig a little deeper and do some analysis on the actual wage, you would understand the reason for that. Those “rich” people can afford to pay the taxes. The people that are in that top 20% earn more than 60K a year. Look at the other percentages – it goes down really rapidly. The top 50% earn only 30K or above, which means, the bottom half, HALF of the country earn less than 30K a year. The 2015 poverty line for a family of 4 was 24K. That means almost HALF of American households are hovering around or below that poverty line. You can’t afford to live and support a household on 30K a year! The majority of the people in that bottom half are elderly, working poor, or low income. They don’t pay much in taxes because they can’t afford to. They need to eat and have shelter to survive! When is the last time you had to live on less than 30K a year??!
My main point is that anyone can find a statistic on the internet that supports their agenda, but show me one and I’ll show you five more that include real data that explain why that is. The page you linked is a really shallow article. ALL media is slanted to a specific direction.
Be educated and compassionate and try and understand why something is the way it is.
The problem isn’t that half the Americans aren’t paying taxes.. the problem is half the Americans can’t afford to. The gap between the rich and the poor is huge and the disappearing middle class is a serious problem for the economics of our country.

Complete Stranger: 60K a year isn’t rich! Just because someone is rich doesn’t mean they should be penalized for it. Everyone should kick in for the cost of government, but they don’t. If they did, they’d care more about waste and overhead. We shipped our middle class jobs to other countries. Hopefully, Trump can get some of them back.

Me: Paying taxes is not a penalty.. it’s part of the system that was set up when our country was founded. That is why we have a thing called a tax bracket. The less you earn, the less you pay.
I’ve been fortunate enough to have been in the top 10% of earners and I’ve paid my fair share. Last year when I submitted my application for healthcare, I qualified for Medicaid. I’ve paid into the system for 20+ years and so in MY hour of need, I expect the system to help me out. That is how it is supposed to work by design.
I’m not sure what epiphany you think people in poverty are supposed to have about waste and overhead? They struggle to make ends meet. They can’t afford to “kick-in”.
As for Trump doing anything to fix the middle class.. don’t hold your breath. That self serving ass-hat isn’t going to do anything that is not in HIS best interest.

Complete Stranger: Respectfully, you are mistaken. The federal income tax was enacted in 1913, and corporate income taxes were enacted slightly earlier, in 1909. The oldest tax is the estate tax that was enacted in 1797. Both were enacted to pay for the military.Our system of government was not founded to take care of people. It is supposed to enable people to live freely. It has been government’s interference in people’s lives that has led to yet more interference.If you were in the top 10% of U.S. earners, at least $133,445, you wouldn’t qualify for Medicaid. If you lost that job and now are on Medicaid, I hope you get another well-paying one, soon.
I’ve been paying into the system since before you were born and have never taken a dime from it. I’ve paid for my own insurance and when I was unemployed, went out and got two jobs.

Me: Thank you. I appreciate the educated clarification on when the tax system was set up. This is the kind of detail people should know.
Yes, in 2016 I was making a 6 figure salary that put me in the top 10 (not by the data from the same site you got your details from). I didn’t lose that job, I quit in 2017 because it wasn’t good for my health. I know I qualified for Medicaid because for 5 months my income was 0 and I was automatically enrolled based on my inquiry on covering myself through healthcare.gov, not because I asked for that. And yes, I have another job now and also haven’t taken a dime from the system..ever. I’m very fortunate.
You’re also fortunate to never have suffered enough to need aid. I know there are people who take advantage of the system, but 50% of America??! I don’t think so. The problem is not a People problem.. it’s a set of systemic problems. Government, corporations, and your top 5% control that and they, out of their own self interest, don’t want it to change.
I would like to see some positive movement from the current governing body, but it’s so convoluted with drama, I don’t think it’s possible.

***

That was the end of it as of half an hour ago.

I’m not sure if I will have the last word on the subject, but if there is further comment, I probably will not reply again. I’m over it. It just proves my point that debate over social media is silly. I’m not a big fan of social media anyway, but as a forum for public debate, especially about political matters, it’s deplorable. Still, it’s a free country and that IS what we pay taxes for so everyone is entitled to their opinion (whether they are wrong or not 😜).

It’s been a long day already and it’s not even 10AM and I’m ready for a nap!

For the Love of Rainbows and Ponies,
~Miss SugarCookie

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