At a time in this country when two of the three leading candidates for federal election, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have all but promise to increase taxes and raise federal spending, a new study has been released which shows that Americans already spend more in taxes than they do on food, clothing and housing combined. The study is part of an annual project on behalf of the Tax Foundation, an independent tax research organization which calculates that approximately 31% of every dollar earned by American workers goes towards federal/state taxes.
The creators of this study are internationally renown for their trademarked calculation known as “Tax Freedom Day.” To understand what this day signifies you have to grasp to the core concept: Imagine that 100% of your income, or every dime earned from every citizen in the United States was magically transferred directly to the government starting January 1st of each year – how many days would it take every worker to collectively pay off the cost of federal and state taxes? That number, that date is what is referred to as America’s “tax freedom day.” In 2016 it would take 114 days or until April 24th to pay off the cost of our government. “If we include annual federal borrowing, which represents future taxes owed, Tax Freedom Day would occur on May 10 – 16 days later.” Source: http://taxfoundation.org/article/tax-freedom-day-2016-april-24
The producers of this study go on to point out the pertinent fact that despite 31% of all wealth generated by working class Americans being taken away by taxes, in 2016, the United States government will once again operate under a budget deficit – something it has done every year since 2002. Furthermore despite running a yearly deficit for the last 13 years, federal spending only continues to rise and “in calendar year 2016, the deficit will grow significantly, from $592 billion to $698 billion.” If you were unaware the United States has 19.2 trillion dollars in national debt due primarily to the facts above.
Perhaps the most damning statistic of all is the fact that 95% percent of our historic, combined national debt has been added by President Obama in the last 8 years alone. So what is the solution? Do we to start to tax every person in the United States above the 31% margin as it exists today to close the budget gap? Do the people of this country need give the federal government more money, resources and authority in hopes they will improve our lives/the economy? Or do we need to demand the government drastically cut its unsustainable spending and reduce federal/state tax burdens far below the 31% margin we see today – directly giving money back to each working class individual in the process? Such questions are at the heart of the divide between liberalism vs conservatism in this country. Tell us, what do you think?
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