Buffett blasts system that lets him pay less tax than secretary

Discussion in 'Politics' started by ZZZzzzzzzz, Jun 28, 2007.

  1. From The Times
    June 28, 2007
    Buffett blasts system that lets him pay less tax than secretary
    Tom Bawden in New York

    Warren Buffett, the third-richest man in the world, has criticised the US tax system for allowing him to pay a lower rate than his secretary and his cleaner.

    Speaking at a $4,600-a-seat fundraiser in New York for Senator Hillary Clinton, Mr Buffett, who is worth an estimated $52 billion (£26 billion), said: “The 400 of us [here] pay a lower part of our income in taxes than our receptionists do, or our cleaning ladies, for that matter. If you’re in the luckiest 1 per cent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 per cent.”

    Mr Buffett said that he was taxed at 17.7 per cent on the $46 million he made last year, without trying to avoid paying higher taxes, while his secretary, who earned $60,000, was taxed at 30 per cent. Mr Buffett told his audience, which included John Mack, the chairman of Morgan Stanley, and Alan Patricof, the founder of the US branch of Apax Partners, that US government policy had accentuated a disparity of wealth that hurt the economy by stifling opportunity and motivation.

    The comments are among the most signficant yet in a debate raging on both sides of the Atlantic about growing income inequality and how the super-wealthy are taxed.
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    They echo those made this month by Nicholas Ferguson, one of the leading figures in Britain’s private equity industry, when he criticised tax rates that left its multimillionaire venture capitalists “paying less tax than a cleaning lady”.

    Last week senior members of the US Senate proposed to increase the rate of tax that private equity and hedge fund staff pay on their share of the profits, known as carried interest, from the 15 per cent capital gains rate to about 35 per cent.

    Lloyd Blankfein, the chief executive of Goldman Sachs, acknowledged in an interview yesterday that there were justified concerns about the huge profits generated by private equity firms and that he worried that income inequality was “poisoning democracy”. He also said that he would be voting for the Democrat candidate at the next election. Mr Blankfein is the highest-paid executive on Wall Street, earning $54 million last year.

    Mr Buffett, who runs the investment group Berkshire Hathaway and is widely regarded as the world’s most successful investor, said that he was a Democrat because Republicans are more likely to think: “I’m making $80 million a year – God must have intended me to have a lower tax rate.”

    Mr Buffett said that a Republican proposal to eliminate elements of inheritance tax, which raises about $30 billion a year from the assets of about 12,000 rich families, would broaden the disparity between rich and poor. He added that the Republicans would seek to recover lost revenue by increasing taxes for the less prosperous.

    He said: “You could take that $30 billion and give $1,000 to 30 million poor families. Or should you favour the 12,000 estates and make 30 million families pay an extra $1,000?”
  2. neophyte321

    neophyte321 Guest

    said that he was a Democrat because Republicans are more likely to think: “I’m making $80 million a year – God must have intended me to have a lower tax rate.”

    ...yes that's what Republicans stand for, lowering the taxes on only those making $80 million a year.

    Funny thing about Buffet, he says he is in favor of the estate tax yet he donated his fortune to a charitable foundation dodging that same tax. Someone remind Buffet that the IRS would gladly accept his donation, if he feels so under-taxed.

    Buffet, what a patriot, demanding the government confiscate more from him, not less from his secretary.

    (from drmarken's earlier post)


    The 1913 Act established the lowest rates since the Walker Tariff of 1857. Most schedules were put on an ad valorem basis (that is, X% of the dollar value of the item). The duty on woolens went from 56% to 18.5%. Steel rails, raw wool, iron ore, and agricultural implements had zero rates. The reciprocity program the Republicans had been pushing was eliminated. Congress rejected proposals for a tariff board to scientifically fix rates, but did set up a study commission.

    Less than 1 % of the population paid federal income tax at the time.

    Tax brackets
    Income level Tax rate
    up to $20,000 1%
    $20,000 - $50,000 2%
    $50,000 - $75,000 3%
    $75,000 - $100,000 4%
    $100,000 - $250,000 5%
    $250,000 - $500,000 6%
    over $500,000 7%
  3. i see this was said at a Hillary fundraiser!!!! buffet is a globalist shill... no telling what advantages they give him to sell out his country. what a scumbag!!!

    Buffet, Ahnold and Rothschild
  4. Now that I am so close to the end of my career and have made $52 Billion, it's only fair that you may now tax me at the same rate as my secretary.

    I could have voluntarily helped pay off the "public" debt with my $52 Billion, but I'll leave that up to those families that are working hard to accumulate wealth with the intention of being self-sufficient and not having to rely on assistance.

    I admit it will be even harder for the young folks to accumulate a bit of wealth with the higher taxes that I'm proposing, but screw them, I've got mine.
  5. exactly... AMEN!!!!
  6. It is difficult for me to understand the animosity towards Warren Buffet. Would you guys feel better and warm all over if he was grabby and pushy, and gave a greed speech like Ivan Boesky did in the 80s? Then, perhaps if he did a bit of time for insider trading or fraud, you might canonize him?
  7. minmike


    So giving to charity is dodging a tax? That means that the inheritance tax is completely voluntary and there would no need to abolish it correct?

    There are good things and bad things about anyone but at least make sense if you are going to complain.
  8. Most of these brainwashed and washed up trader wanna be young republican ASSHOLES, are in the belief that if they kick and demean anyone who tries to shake them from their delusion to be rich, they will somehow be lifted up by the inner circle and made whole again. When in reality they should direct their energies and venom to the system, Fucksim that brainwashed them in the first place.
  9. you people amaze me... buffet doesn't give one shit about the little guys. if he did he would help his friend patrick byrnes expose the illegal naked shorting mafia.

    here we see buffet backing another globalist shill... fake liberal hillary clinton. people like buffet and gates owe their fortunes to the internationalist and near the end of their careers they have to pay them back. gates likes to poke kids in third world countries with tainted vaccines and blast us with how great illegal immigration and H1b visas are.

    this isnt about fresh faced republicans wanting to get theirs at any cost. i am an old conservative that figured these war mongering scumbags out a long time ago.
  10. What amazes me is the attempt to characterize Buffet as an "Internationalist" shill, akin to current mafia leadership in the WHite House, when in fact he is an above average investor that beat most daytraders and other speculators at their own game using fundamental analisys and patience. He is now saying a few things about how "fuckism" really is here and you call him a traitor? WTF!!!?? You should buy some common sense at the dollar store, Pal. He is backing Hillary since the GOP has no frigging, legit. candidate since Bloomberg went independet :)
    #10     Jun 28, 2007