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Sun Jul 15, 2012, 11:38 PM

Let me ask you a volatile question

Hypothetically speaking, you find out a candidate for President over the last nine years made a gazillion million dollars but paid no taxes on it. You think about the fact that you are formerly a middle-class tax-paying American now tottering on the brink of poverty. Your blood pressure starts to rise when you remember this candidate endorsed the Ryan Plan. That is the Republican-endorsed plan which cuts taxes for the super wealthy but increases them on middle class and poverty stricken Americans while gutting the social safety net.

How could this possibly -- hypothetically speaking, of course -- happen?

It could possibly happen if that candidate declared to the IRS he or she made a nominal amount of income for a person in the wealthiest one-percent of Americans. That amount might be possibly $100,000. The balance of funds this individual realized during the current calendar tax year is in the millions of dollars. When added to the previous eight tax years, the total is a gazillion million dollars. In each of those tax years, the untaxed portion was investment income. The investment profit was sheltered using the carried-over interest provision in the tax code. There are clues which suggest this is a pattern of conduct habitually practiced.

It has been publicly reported that a number of extremely well-to-do individuals have millions of dollars in off-shore tax shelters, such as the Cayman Islands, Swiss banks, perhaps even Bermuda. These individuals have proposed bringing the millions home if the U.S. Government will agree to tax the monies at a rate not to exceed five percent.

Piece by piece, a picture starts to form. The clearer it becomes, the more outrage you feel. This candidate has the audacity to run for President of the United States after exhibiting a pattern of tax avoidance during a time of recession -- some argue a depression -- while publicly advocating that the middle class and impoverished persons pick up the slack tax evaders have created. Cut unemployment benefits, eradicate unions, cut food stamps but let them eat cake (as long as they bake it themselves).

Let me ask you a volatile question. Would the collective outrage of millions of voters realizing this ugly truth result in a tsunami of revulsion that would wash this individual's candidacy out of the political waters? Would this type of selfish, arrogant conduct be so repulsive to the collective voting public the revelation of this behavior would become the Bain of this candidate’s political life and Presidential quest?

What is your answer?

Sam

24 replies, 3403 views

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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Let me ask you a volatile question (Original post)
Samantha Jul 2012 OP
RobertEarl Jul 2012 #1
Samantha Jul 2012 #2
FirstLight Jul 2012 #3
Samantha Jul 2012 #7
Skittles Jul 2012 #4
Samantha Jul 2012 #8
rufus dog Jul 2012 #5
freshwest Jul 2012 #6
Samantha Jul 2012 #10
Lex Jul 2012 #9
Samantha Jul 2012 #12
tblue Jul 2012 #11
geckosfeet Jul 2012 #13
Samantha Jul 2012 #17
geckosfeet Jul 2012 #19
Samantha Jul 2012 #24
eridani Jul 2012 #14
TBF Jul 2012 #15
geckosfeet Jul 2012 #20
KharmaTrain Jul 2012 #16
Samantha Jul 2012 #23
Bluenorthwest Jul 2012 #18
Samantha Jul 2012 #22
turtlerescue1 Jul 2012 #21

Response to Samantha (Original post)

Sun Jul 15, 2012, 11:52 PM

1. Yes.

 

I do believe if the facts come out as Obama plans the people will rightly be repulsed. And all the other 1%ers will begin crouching in fear.

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Response to RobertEarl (Reply #1)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:28 AM

2. Thank you for your response

I started writing this thread two or three days ago. It had an entirely different tone, based on a serious premise with some research and links backing it up. That thread was prompted by the question we often hear raised prompted by commentators, words to the effect what would be so outrageous many Americans would be shocked. The simple answer to that question soon appeared to me. I thought in this time of serious economical recession and the chronic refrain from politicians that there must be "shared sacrifice" with the cutting of pensions, public employees, the social safety net there were many wealthy people in the top top one percent avoiding taxes on a tremendously large scale. The simple but glaring unfairness of it all and the magnitude to which it exists I thought would be "shocking" to many, even middle-class Republicans.

Then I thought about that article I read about two years ago here I think of carried over interest. I researched it then and found out George W. Bush* had passed a provision in 2003 which further expanded carried over interest. It seemed to me to be a payback to his political supporters.

But nothing, nothing to me excuses those in the wealthiest of taxpayers dumping their responsibility and asking those truly hurting to pick up the slack. That seemed glaring. My original draft of this thread got so technical in nature, tonight I just started over with this simple hypothetical. I believe that was the right decision.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:30 AM

3. yep...

the guillotine is being sharpened, and the Bastille about to be stormed...everything about the 'ruling class' is what this candidate represents, and that is a huge tipping point. I pray he will be the first in a long line of SEC and other DOJ trials we see coming down the pike for a whole bunch of them...because they all have their hands in eachother's front pockets, you know it.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #3)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:45 AM

7. You know what I forgot to ask in my thread?

If that Presidential candidate is in the group asking to bring his or her millions home but not at a rate of more than five percent. I might have to edit my thread tomorrow. I think someone I know campaigning is probably in that group. And the outrage is to all other taxpayers, even those in one percent group right underneath that top ten percent is this: everyone who is not in that narrow group of 400 is picking up the slack for them -- every single taxpayer. That is why I believe there would be collective outrage by many, many voters.

Thank you for responding to my thread.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:35 AM

4. Mitt is the epitome of the 1%

he and his money have been sheltered so long it never occured to him people might start demanding answers when his over-cooked ego decided it wanted the presidency of the United States. That fucker desperately doesn't want the 99% to find out just how fucked up our system is and just how how often rules and regulations are relaxed for or cater to the wealthy.

If "we the people" were properly educated on the facts, yes, I think there would be mass outrage.

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Response to Skittles (Reply #4)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:50 AM

8. I read that thread about carried over interest here and there was a line which said

investors argue that investment income (profit) is not immediately realized so it should not be immediately taxed. It is realized over a long period of time. Some taxpayers have been able to continue carrying over that same investment profit for a number of years. That is why this hypothetical poses the question about the cumulative carried over for 8 to 9 years. The inception would be when George W. Bush passed that special provision in 2003 and if a taxpayer could extend the taxes for as long as ten years, that would show up if he or she revealed his tax returns for the last say 8 or 9 years. It would no longer be a hypothetical question then but a shocking reality -- the cumulative tax avoided over a long period of time.

Thanks for responding to my thread.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:35 AM

5. Would I be repulsed, yes, what would be the impact on the electorate...

I would think Romney would still carry the deep South, (lose Georgia) likely throw Indiana to Obama, and maybe a couple of other small Big Sky states, maybe Alaska. All and all a pick of of maybe two or three States that McCain carried in 2008.

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:43 AM

6. Only if they turn off the siren call of right wing talking heads, whose masters pay to confuse.

That is why they are going for broke with voter ID laws, hundreds of millions spent to hide the facts, trying to keep their power. There is no law on planet Earth that says the righteous or the majority will prevail. People are being slaughered all over this planet trying to bring us to an understanding, to save live and the planet's living beings from this death machine.

I read some source, I think ti was one of the Chinese ones a few years ago. I wasn't sure whether it was of any importance, but remembered it. It said this year would be like the last few years, times of great disaster and revelations. It described it as a cleansing. We have seen disasters and Wikileaks give us information on a transformational level. Advances in information or explosions of knowledge have sparked revolutions and great changes in societies historically.

The same thing also said that this year would be the one in which people would choose to favor the haves or the have nots, and it would determine out path for centuries. This has happened before. I think we stand in a dangerous place that will go one way or the other.

We are seeing changes in this country that have been harming the have nots and the push for more wealth than ever before. It is not pre-ordained by fate, or the stars, or prophecy. It is our choice. It's a heavy thing to witness as it unfolds.

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Response to freshwest (Reply #6)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:55 AM

10. I totally agree -- this election will be the tipping point

Regardless whether one supports President Obama or not (I personally do), he is the absolute correct politician to lead this electoral fight. He is extremely intelligent as is his staff. They know the stakes.

I have always thought the Republicans planned to steal this one. I still do. It could go either way. The Justice Department has NO CHOICE but to get into the fight about those voter registration laws but still the question must be addressed how to prevent election fraud through manipulation of the voting totals election night. I have no idea what the answer to this is. I hope the Obama team has a plan. I am sure it will happen, and it probably will be in two spots where we least expect it.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:51 AM

9. Unfortunately a lot of people don't pay that much attention.

They listen to Fox News and spewing forth non-facts. They wouldn't even care enough to read one paragraph about Mitt's investment profits.

Those are the ones I'm worried about, but hopefully they aren't a great percentage.

I wonder, even, if this information about Mitt will even alter the polls that much.

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Response to Lex (Reply #9)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:59 AM

12. There must be some concern because even Republicans are starting to make noise

It just might be one of those things Rove, et al. cannot keep a lid on. A couple of commentators at MSNBC might address it, some at Current might address it, but unfortunately its ratings are down. I suppose a lot of it might simply rest of just how much exposure can put the issue in the spotlight should the revelations pan out to be as volatile as some suggest they might.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:57 AM

11. Yes it would for all but about 13%.

The ones who like Dick Cheney. They are the diehards who will drink any Repub Koolaid.

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 06:33 AM

13. To some. To others said candidate would be a role model and a hero.

To others, those many who are so dull that they do not understand the one way ride they are being taken on, no.

There is in fact a wide spectrum of the voting public who could somehow justify your fictional persons behavior. Why, I suspect that it is possible for such an individual to be nominated as the republican or libertarian candidate for president.

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #13)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 08:55 AM

17. I believe you are theoretically correct in everything you say

But I am a little bit more optimistic that should my hypothetical candidate materialize in the near future, the skilled Obama team will make sure the message of the hypocrisy of this candidate's quest for POTUS is one that most of the voting public finds unacceptable.

Picture this, in effect, this candidate's position: I need the American people to support allowing my friends and I to bring our gazillion million dollars back to the United States as long as it is not taxed at a rate of more than five percent. In order to fill the revenue short gap this maneuver will create during this time of huge government deficits and recession, when so many of you are worried about losing your job, holding on to your health insurance, making your mortgage payments, I must ask for this concession that you pay a higher percentage of taxes than I so I might realize enough of a savings on my own to in fact install those elevator lifts for my Cadillacs in my remodeled waterfront summer home, among other things. I am sure you will understand and will willingly make that sacrifice.

What kind of human being does this? A person totally lacking in compassion for the less fortunate and absolutely incapable of supporting fairness for all. It is, after all, all about him. This person is the last type of person who should consider him or herself as fitting for the Oval Office. And I think most of the voting public will get that.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Reply #17)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 06:17 PM

19. We can only hope. And vote.

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #19)

Tue Jul 17, 2012, 09:43 AM

24. I wrote this thread as a hypothetical piecing together bits of information

accumulated over a period of time. But it was just speculation as to what could be so shocking to the American people, the info revealed in unleashed past tax returns would crescendo into a picture that outraged the voting American people to the level the candidate's mere quest for the White House would become pure anathema to them. I was very surprised to see the essence of what I was suggesting appear in the Washington Post and reported on the front page of DU this morning. Here is a quote and a link to that thread:

"Tax Havens. Offshore accounts. Carried Interest. Mitt Romney has used every trick in the book,” the narrator says. “Romney admits that over the last two years he’s paid less than 15 percent in taxes on $43 million in income. Makes you wonder if some years he paid any taxes at all. We don’t know because Romney has released just one full year of his tax returns. And won’t release anything before 2010.”

http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014168521

Look particularly at the phrases "makes you wonder if some years he paid any taxes at all", "carried over interest" and the admission that Romney has made that some years he paid less than 15 percent.

This whole hypothetical could be a reality. The only question now remaining is if that is true, to what extent will the outrage by voters explode? Or will it at all?

And it would be wonderful to know if he is indeed in that group petitioning to bring his funds home if the government would agree to tax it at no more than 5 percent. Now that will be stunning if true.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 07:43 AM

14. No. Too many crabby old white men hate black people worse than economic misery

There really are people out there who would pay to have their dominant hand sawn off if the other half of the deal was that someone they really hated would get both hands sawn off.

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 07:51 AM

15. Folks in this country should've been in the streets en masse during the Bush administration -

not sure why they weren't. I really don't know what it's going to take.

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Response to TBF (Reply #15)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 06:18 PM

20. They were. The msm doesn't cover it.

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 07:56 AM

16. For Rushpublican, This Is A Badge Of Honor...Shirking Taxes Is An Honor...

Dan Senor this morning alluded that all the tax dodges Willard has done is legal and that he's successful thus has the right to all the loopholes and tax shelters he can find. He didn't write the laws, just took advantage of them. Of course that belies the fact that the laws have been gutted in the past 20 years and it's very possible that Mittens paid ZERO income tax for many years...and did so legally. For rushpublicans...especially deadbeat teabaggers...they hate taxes (of course they want their social security and medicare) and anyone who shirks them is a hero. So in the rushpublican clown car demolition last winter Willard's taxes became a non-issue...but that's not the case now.

In politics perception is reality and the more Willard parses about his taxes and role at Bain it shows what a shady operator he is. It's not the money as much as its his not being open about what he did with it. The perception that he's dodging taxes and lying about it is almost akin to lying about sex. For some it's a private matter while to others its a test of one's morality.

To your question...Yes...if a candidate is so arrogant and brazen about how they make and spend their money, they can and do lose. Linda McMahon in 2010 is a classic case as is Michael Huffington in California in '94. Being rich isn't something Americans hold against politicians but if that money is flaunted, that's another story. What we're seeing is Mittens values his money more than all else and his refusal to open the books shows he's got things to hide. A self-inflicted wound that continues to spread...

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Response to KharmaTrain (Reply #16)

Tue Jul 17, 2012, 01:59 AM

23. I really like this phrase you used

"A self-inflicted would that continues to spread...."

I totally agree. The fascinating reality though is that we all sit back and watch him blame President Obama and his team for the deterioration of his reputation. He did this to himself.

Thanks for posting on my thread.

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 12:29 PM

18. Yes. People take the tax paying thing seriously.

 

This is one of the few subjects in politics that can not be spun away.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #18)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 06:52 PM

22. Well, let's keep piling on here in our hypothetical

Many people do not realize that the classification of an entity as a small business is determined by the number of owners. Tremendously large profits do not matter. There are several large conglomerates which have split their organizations off into separate compartments, which each having only one "owner." Again, that's the important point when one chooses to be classified as a small business. The reason these large entities have chosen this path is to take advantage of the tax breaks extended to small businesses that large corporations do not receive. And clearly we hear very frequently politicians in our legislature campaigning for tax relief for small businesses.

So I have to wonder -- that term "sole shareholder" implies to me there is one owner of the business. In our hypothetical, our candidate has declared he formed the business, functioned as the CEO and is the sole shareholder. It would be good to know if his investment business is classified as a "small" business so we could perhaps look a little deeper into exactly what special tax breaks that "small" business would receive.

And thank you for responding to my thread!

Sam

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Response to Samantha (Original post)

Mon Jul 16, 2012, 06:25 PM

21. Sure, IMO.

But I actually know people who believe the "birther" issue is true. So...who knows what the millions of voters reactions would be?

By the way a pair of the Fundies I know BOTH refuse to work anyway but under the table for wages...tell you something? GRRRRRRRRRR.

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