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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on May 3, 2007 11:28 AM. The previous post in this blog was A carbon footprint -- on your face. The next post in this blog is More of nothing. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Thursday, May 3, 2007

Be not proud, Oregon

Did you realize that we are one of 19 states that impose an income tax on people living below the federal poverty level?

Comments (18)

there outta be a law.

Rob Kremer made a good point on this when the governor was shopping with food stamps. Raise the income threshold at which the state income tax kicks in and let folks buy groceries with their own money rather than taxing them too much and then providing them assistance.

I think it proper that everyone should pay something. Otherwise, people that don't even pay taxes could just vote for the rest of us to pay higher taxes, knowing that they themselves would be exempted, since they don't pay. It's little more than legal pocket-picking.

Oh, wait, nevermind...that's already happening at the Federal level, where a significant portion of the citizens don't pay any income tax whatsoever. But they still get to vote!

You know Oregon, if your single taxes = 9% above $6000 a year. I'd love it if we could ape Washington w/o an income tax, but then again, poor people pay sales tax also. Thank god for EIC for these people.

On the contrary.
According to the article:
Oregons effective tax rate at the poverty level seems to be %1.4
Below that at $15,500 not only is no tax owed but a refund of $136 is issued.
Unlike all the other states,the defining issue in Oregon's tax structure is there is NO sales tax.
I challenge you to find a more favorable deal anywhere.

I challenge you to find a more favorable deal anywhere.

There are seven states with no income tax.

...that's already happening at the Federal level, where a significant portion of the citizens don't pay any income tax whatsoever. But they still get to vote!

Nice, compassionate thought, Al.

If you look closer in one particular case, the working poor pay a higher portion of their income than higher income earners, into what is a de facto income tax - Social Security.

Unless you believe the nonsense that there's a "vault" where all of the SS contributions are kept.

The effect of the refundable federal earned income tax credit is to refund much, if not all, of the Social Security taxes paid by many low-income workers.

Try filing as an independent contractor in Multnomah County sometime, if you really want to get PO'd at our outrageously corrupt and wasteful local government's tax structure.

At least at the federal level, low-income Americans/Oregonians pay no taxes of any kind. The Earned Income Tax Credit refunds not only all federal income taxes paid, but also Social Security and Medicare taxes paid. Happily, low-income folks are still eligible to collect from both these compassionate programs upon their retirement. Any questions about why both programs are going broke?

A capitalist economy requires that there be a range of incomes. Certain types of jobs will always pay less than others. This type of an economy needs low-income workers. Low-income workers are people with lives and families. Unless we're satisfied to think that low-income workers should provide their services for as long as they can survive with sub-standard housing, food, and healthcare, then die and make room for new, short-term disposable, low income workers, we might realize that low-income workers are serving this society and this economy simply by fulfilling their role, and before they pay one penny of taxes. To ask them to pay taxes, when they can barely afford decent housing, food, clothing and healthcare is not practical and doesn't even serve our economic system well. What it is, at it's core, is cruel and punitive. There is more than one way to pay one's fair share.

You know what is cruel and punitive?
It's after working and paying taxes for 37 years that I am continually confronted with this socialistic dogma.
What poor are you refering to?
The poor born here who had the same opportunities I had but didn't take them?
The newly immigrated poor who know they are better off being poor in a capitalist economy then being average in a socialist economy.
Or those who are poor on paper only...the underground cash based economy poor.
Even more irritating is you discount the value of my labors to society. I work just as hard as any of the "poor" yet you seem to think that only I should pay taxes.
Tax the rich! is your mantra and I quess that is me because I fall into the 50% of the wage earners who are paying 96% of the taxes.
You know you were right about one thing though. There is more than one way to pay one's fair share...community service...I've done it.

Jack's the teax expert, but i can offer this.

by most estimates:

the top 1% of households control about 40% of all financial wealth.

the top 20% of all households control 90% of all financial wealth.

that means that 8 out of 10 households control 10% or less of all financial wealth.

the figures are similar when looking at net worth.

with this in mind, it's hard for me to come down hard on those 80% of us who have a grand total of

James, cut the drama. If you consider having to face dogma as punitive and cruel, when in reality you can simply ignore it, and we are talking about people who face poverty every day, you are not even seriously looking at this issue.

And I don't spout socialist dogma. I'm a realist who lives in a capitalist system. And capitalism is just fine by me.

By poor I simply mean those who fall below the poverty level, as was indicated in Jack's original post. I'm not a drama queen.

"I work just as hard as any of the "poor" yet you seem to think that only I should pay taxes."

There's nothing in my post that indicated that I think only you should pay taxes. And I never compared the effort of work that any person or economic class contributes.

"Tax the rich! is your mantra and I quess that is me because I fall into the 50% of the wage earners who are paying 96% of the taxes.
You know you were right about one thing though. There is more than one way to pay one's fair share...community service...I've done it."

Now I get it. It's all about you. Please ignore any post I make in the future James, because even if your mind is able to twist it around and make it all about you, I guarantee it's not about you at all. I will never write about you. Take my word for it.

James is absolutely right. When it comes to improving your standard of living, this country affords equality of opportunity for ALL. No other country in the world offers the same economic mobility.

No, we aren't all going to become millionaires, but we can ALL improve our lot life with some combination of ambition, hard work, and education.

Ever wonder why you never see any asian kids downtown begging for spare change? It's not because of inherited wealth.

When it comes to improving your standard of living, this country affords equality of opportunity for ALL...


"Mister Tee", c'mon. give some modest bit of proof for that. no, i dont mean "looka t person X, he got rich." i mean--show some proof that that America provides equal opportunity to the poor black kid born on the east side of Chicago that it does to the daughter of George Bush. or equal opportunity to a legal immigrant from Guadalajara that it does to a child of wealthy parents living in the West Hills.


LC My apologies if I misinterpreted your comments as having a socialist bent...so..the drama wasn't working for you...damn..I've always gotten a lot of milage out of it.

Surely Mr. Tee and James, are absolutely sure that some people in the US have it better than they do. Some guys had a better start. Wealth, connections, intelligence, good-looks, charm, stable family, etc., are all things that can provide one with better access to opportunities. No doubt Mr. Tee and James have always been aware of those guys who had it better.

In view of this, it is curious that they would turn a blind eye to those who might not have it as good as they do. If some have it better, logic dictates that some must have it worse, unless James and Mr. Tee are at the bottom of the heap. We know that's not true.


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