Friday, December 10, 2010

Who Should Define 'Rich'?

Soak The Rich (And Leave Us All Poorer)
By Victor Davis Hanson
Investor's Business Daily
December 9, 2010

For the last two years, $250,000 in annual income has become an arbitrary line in the sand of a renewed class war.  Those above it must alone have their income taxes raised.  Those below are deemed more virtuous and so deserving of a tax cut.

But what exactly is "rich"? Zillionaires such as Warren Buffet, Bill Gates or George Soros surely are.  But these wealthiest individuals have so much money at their disposal they don't care much about income-tax rates.

Their tax lawyers have found ingenious ways to divert millions of what would be owed to Uncle Sam by funding tax-free pet causes, private foundations and favored charities -- in a way not true to those who make far less than a million dollars a year.

Define 'Poor'

Is annual income a good guage of wealth?  Who is richer -- the architect in Monterey, Calif., who makes $250,000 a year and pays $700,000 for a modest house while picking up the full tab of $40,000 a year for his daughter at a private liberal arts college, or the engineer in Utah making $100,000 a year with a house twice as large at half the cost, with a son on a need-based scholarship at the university?
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