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About Kerrynomics

by Del McMullen / September 18, 2004 1:20 PM PDT

Yes, it's CBS (but not Mr Blather):

John Kerry: "I explain how I pay for all my proposals ? By rolling back the recent Bush tax cuts for families making over $200,000 per year, we can pay for health care and education."

Michael O'Guin: "I grew up in a lower-middle-class household. I studied hard and put myself through a good college. Ten years ago, I started my own company and for the past four years my income has exceeded $200,000 a year. Last year, I paid 40 percent of my income for self-employment, state and federal income taxes. From the remaining, I support five people, pay for health insurance and save for retirement. Teresa Kerry, with assets exceeding $500 million, pays less than 2 percent (includes her foundation income). Instead of raising the taxes on the person flying around the world on the Gulfstream G5, John Kerry wants to put a bigger tax burden on the one driving the ?97 Intrepid with more than 100,000 miles on it. While his rhetoric attacks the wealthy, his policies attack the middle class."


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Re: About Kerrynomics
by Roger NC / September 18, 2004 8:51 PM PDT
In reply to: About Kerrynomics

If I remember some chart I was looking at one time, middle class extends all the way to $250K minimum, and that was probably a decade ago, so after inflation adjustment what would it be?

Of course, at that time, at my income, and considering a very good income in my neck of the woods was $30K, $250K didn't seem like middle of anything. But that was over a decade ago, so.........

I'll grant you, I'm still less than a third of being rich by the $250K standard.


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Re: About Kerrynomics
by TONI H / September 18, 2004 9:24 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: About Kerrynomics

I raised three daughters in the 1960's and 70's on a little more than $9000 per year and that included house payments and babysitters. I'm on SS now back receiving around that much per year but living alone and still making house payments.....and borrowing from Peter to pay Paul nearly every month making decisions on whether I can purchase my life-saving drugs now. It's like trying to decide if my kids should eat or do I need gas or bus money to get to the job all over again..........

I hate to think about how many times I envied my daughter who was doing less than I ever did in an office environment but making four times the salary I made during my entire lifetime of working per year.

Middle class to me has always been anybody making enough to have normal stuff, forget luxuries like vacations.


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Re: About Kerrynomics
by Evie / September 19, 2004 2:42 AM PDT
In reply to: Re: About Kerrynomics

Hi Roger,

I have no idea what one describes as middle class anymore. But if you are talking occupations, I would dare say that teacher, cop, fireman, skilled trades, retail manager, heavy equipment operator, nurse, etc. would all apply. Fact is most households these days are two income households, and while they may not total their income to $200K, a $100K total for the above mentioned jobs is not unheard of, and indeed the norm in many regions of the country. I can think of two couples we know, that neither have college educations and both make over $100K/year combined. One is a combo between a telephone company worker and a retail manager, the other is a combo of a cement truck driver and casino hostess.

According to 2001 IRS Stats Income cut-offs are as follows:

Top 1% $ 292,913
Top 5% $ 127,904
Top 10% $ 92,754
Top 25% $ 56,085
Top 50% $ 28,528

That puts these IMO classic "middle class" couples solidly in the top 10% -- a class rhetorically considered to be "rich" by those that peddle in class warfare.

Something else that jumps out at me is that the top 1% cutoff was less than $300K. While nobody would argue that $300K is scraping by, it is HARDLY the same as the fractional percent of the rich that are *stinking rich* millionaires. Many people as they earn more tend to get the slightly bigger house, nicer car, more quality furniture & appliances, etc. Taxing them more eats just as much into the type of discretionary "spending" money as does taxing the lower income couple that drives the less expensive car living in the smaller house buying furniture at Bob's Discount (local CT chain) vs. Ethan Allan.

In order to really "stick it" to the ultra-rich, the income level at which more punitive tax rates would kick in has to be raised SIGNIFICANTLY over the $200K mark. Otherwise you are still punishing the most successful among the workers that constitute the economic engine of the country.

Evie Happy

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