President Obama doesn't have has facts straight. Tax rates were actually lower under Presidents George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. The tax percent of the Gross Domestic Product is lower, but that is due to the recession.
According to The Tax Foundation’s Federal Individual Income Tax Rates History table, the top marginal tax rate is currently 35 percent. In 1992, under President George H.W. Bush the top marginal rate was 4 points lower than today’s rate at 31 percent. In 1988, under President Ronald Reagan the top marginal rate was 7 points lower than today’s rate at 28 percent.
It is true, however, that tax revenues collected as a percentage of GDP are at historic lows. A February 7th Associated Press article did report, “Actually, as a share of the nation’s economy, Uncle Sam’s take this year will be the lowest since 1950, when the Korean War was just getting under way. … In the current budget year, federal tax receipts will be equal to 14.8 percent of the Gross Domestic Product, or GDP, the lowest level since Harry Truman was president.”
But the AP went on to report that the recession and tax loopholes, not lower tax rates, were the cause of the revenue drop: “The poor economy is largely to blame...
It's a vicious circle:
The Government doesn't collect taxes from people who can't find a job
The Government then pays these people who can't find a job, for not working
The people who collect this "benefit" from the Government become dependent on the Government for paying for their lifestyle
The people then continue to elect these people who "enable" the people to become dependent on the Government
So they realize that they can sit on their butts at home, so long as they go on the internet one day a week (probably less than an hour on the computer), and "claim" they were seeking employment
That gets them 3 years of "free" money
After the three years that "benefit" could be extended AGAIN, or they will have to find another Government "program" to become dependent on, or they have to find work
Heck yeah the Government isn't collecting tax revenue at percentages they have in the past, there isn't enough people working to do that.
And that's exactly the way the Government wants it.
It truely is sad
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