Brian Richards | Paying Your Fair Share

Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editor

A common trope from the left is that the rich don’t pay their fair share of taxes. This of course is another in a long line of lies that they trot out when they want to expand an already hugely bloated federal government to fund whatever silly program or programs they think we can’t live without.

Let’s look at the facts and disprove their claim that the wealthy don’t pay their fair share. 

According to The Institute on Taxation and Policy (, the top 1% of income earners pay an astounding 24.1% of all federal income tax. 

The top 5% pay 40.40% of all income taxes. The top 20% pay 66.5% of all income taxes. The top 40% pay 83.50% of all income taxes. 

How can anyone claim these people aren’t paying their fair share when they’re paying almost everything? Only leftists make this absurd claim. 

I read recently that 65,000 people in New York City pay 51% of the city’s income taxes and it’s still not enough for people like leftists like Mayor Bill de Blasio. 

Do you want to know who doesn’t pay their fair share, let alone any share? The bottom 40% contribute 7% to the federal income tax pie. Considering that they pay 7.65% in mandatory Social Security and Medicare withholding, that means they are paying less overall than what is being withheld. In many cases they are getting a check from the government that exceeds their contribution. 

Without making a judgment on if I agree with this or not, it’s clear the bottom 40% are not paying their fair share because they essentially pay nothing or almost nothing, let alone a fair share. 

The left also likes to foolishly claim corporations aren’t paying their fair share. They say this, apparently oblivious that they are at least half responsible for our 70,000-page tax code that allows corporations under certain circumstances to pay little or nothing. 

They also haven’t quite grasped that higher corporate taxes are paid by us, the users of their goods and services, not the corporations. It’s the simple and obvious that so frequently escapes them.

There is no doubt our tax code can and should be simpler. Deductions should be limited and offset with a standard deduction so more people can easily do their taxes without the need of a professional. 

President Donald Trump tried to get this process going by limiting the state and local tax deduction. People like Thomas Oatway cried for months about his home value and how limiting this deduction would cause housing prices to collapse. 

Do you recall that? I do and nothing could be further from the truth, as evidenced by home prices, especially here in Santa Clarita. A simpler and fairer tax code benefits all of us!

So remember, when they say “pay your fair share,” it’s a lie. What they really mean is wanting the top 50% to pay EVEN more of their income toward taxes so they can fund their dopey and bloated programs. 

Fairness has nothing to do with it. 

Brian Richards

Stevenson Ranch

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