Tuesday, May 29, 2012 | 2 a.m.
In this age of teeth-gnashing over the need to sacrifice, to cut entitlements, to cut help for the needy, to tax the working poor and the need to lay off government workers, there is one select group who does not have to join in. That is the top 1 and 2 percent. Why don’t they have to sacrifice? Because the wealthy write all the rules.
Tax codes are designed to benefit the wealthy. Politicians who make the laws are themselves wealthy. If they do not come into office wealthy, they get there quickly. I wonder how? The legal system is written to benefit the wealthy. We are tough on crime, but that only applies to the poor. Wealthy white-collar criminals pay fines and continue to do whatever they were doing.
Corporations are the same as wealthy individuals. Corporations complain about their 35 percent tax rate while the average tax rate for all corporations for 2011 was 12.9 percent, much like Mitt Romney and Warren Buffett. Many corporations pay no income taxes, some get huge refunds from the IRS and some get subsidies in the billions of dollars while making profits in the even larger billions of dollars.
The wealthy individuals and corporations are pouring hundreds of millions of dollars (anonymously, unless you are Sheldon Adelson) into campaigns and super PACs (slush-funds) thanks to the Supreme Court and Citizens United. That should have been called Wealthy United.