Sunday, July 3, 2011

Soak the Rich, Week 9

Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) insists we can balance a 2011 budget deficit of $1.62 trillion by raising taxes on America’s most successful employers. In the spirit of bipartisanship, I've been calculating the results of punishing evil corporations and their fat-cat CEOs. After nine weeks and 18 of the largest companies in the S&P 500 index, where has Sherrod's Sure-Fire Budget Oil gotten us?

Though Senator Brown and President Obama aren’t specific about their assuredly non-socialist methodology, I've taken a leap to doubled corporate income taxes and fully “reclaimed” CEO pay. If these extreme measures (view Excel summary) won’t work, Ohioans might want to start looking for a senator with more sense than Sherrod Brown!

By dramatically increasing taxes on eighteen of America’s largest companies, we could reduce the 2011 U.S. budget deficit from $1,620,000,000,000 to $1,530,313,629,220. That’s a 5.536% slice of a single year’s deficit pie. Even if soaking a few hundred more employers could cover the remaining 94.464% of the 2011 deficit, would it be worth it?

Of course it would! As any Progressive will tell you, raising taxes on The Rich has no negative effects. Among the things that won’t happen if Sherrod Brown taxes his way to the chart above:

  • None of the corporations’ 4,798,660 employees will lose their jobs.
  • None of the corporations' products or services – health insurance, prescription drugs, medical devices, business & consumer lending, gasoline, construction equipment, air travel, cell phone service, broadband access, fast food, the thousands of items available at & Wal-Mart, toothpaste, diapers, detergent, baby soap, Band-Aids, computer software, iPods, laptops, servers, networking equipment, etc. – will get more expensive.
  • None of the funds or individuals holding the corporations’ 59,813,800,000 shares of stock will be ruined… unless they deserve it!
  • None of the world’s entrepreneurs or executives will stop investing in American businesses.

It’s a good thing raising taxes is an all-around win, because Sherrod Brown is our only hope and soaking The Rich is his only idea.

Follow me on Twitter: @jasonahart

Cross-posted at that hero.



    I guess Sherrod Brown forgot his comment in 1995 when he claimed to be a "budget hawk."

  2. I see your point, but what about the huge tax breaks these companies get for outsourcing jobs to China? If we closed a lot of the tax loopholes these corporations get, it would help cut into the problem. I'm not saying raise taxes, I'm saying change the system.

  3. MJL, I'm all for closing loopholes while lowering rates. Our corporate tax policy should be about two things: competitiveness and predictability. Unlike Sherrod Brown, I would not put "government favoritism" on that list.

    Sadly, when conservatives try to couple closed loopholes with lowered rates to compete in a global marketplace, we're demonized by leftists for whom "closing loopholes" is simply an easier sell than the higher rates they actually desire.

  4. My major issue with the tax system are all of the breaks. As a single person who rents, and has no children, I get stuck paying between 1500 and 3k every year. The system as it is makes it so that only the incredibly wealthy or the incredibly poor don't have to pay much if any in taxes each year, while the middle class gets hammered. Im not saying that raising taxes is the answer, but something needs to be done with the system.


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