Robert Eisenbeis | No Taxation without Representation

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Nels's picture

I like it.  The slogans for the new 3rd party are "No Representation without Taxation",  and "Equal Taxation under the Law".

Don't pay taxes on balance, and you don't vote.  FICA/medicare doesn't count, as tax eaters can expect to get back more than they bring in.

The Alinskyites, of course, will twist this to make most of us look to be dependents and as such lose the vote.

goodrich4bk's picture

The author is doubly wrong.  First, SS and Medicare are income taxes --- the amount you pay is a percentage of income.  Therefore, the author would have included SS and Medicare taxes in his analysis if he was honest.  Second, the Greenspan Commission dramatically raised SS and Medicare taxes in the 1980s and then lent this surplus (the amount that exceeded benefitspaid) to the government.  The government has ever since been reporting this borrowed money as part of its revenue.  When Bush II was elected, this revenue ---consisting solely of taxes paid by those earing less than $106,000 --- created a government surplus that Bush II promptly refunded to the wealthiest Americans via his tax cuts.  This two-step fraud was nothing less than a tax on the working class to fund a tax cut for the rich.

Now fast forward 10 years and see the same Republican politicians complain the SS and Medicare beneifts are no longer affordable.  Instead of reversing the tax cuts for the rich and returning that money to the SS trust fund, they argue we must keep the tax cuts and cut benefits.

Care to comment on the fairness of this scam Mr. Eisenbeis?

Stuck on Zero's picture

Eisenbeis you are ignorant.  Throwing a bunch of irrelevant percentages about to make your point that the upper 1% are saints and the other 99% are sinners is cheap and slimey.  For example, you selectively use personal income taxes as a basis.  How about all taxes including inflation, use tax, mandated requirements, Social Security, unemployment, etc.? Another divisive trick you pull is to talk about the top 1% of earners.  How about talking about the top 0.01% of earners?  Warren Buffet has shown many times that he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary.  I could go on and on but it's hard to argue with idiots.  I give your little essay a D-.

fleur de lis's picture

The IRS racket was cooked up to funnel money into the Fed racket. One depends on and cannot survive without the other.

Since the establishment of both scams, the earnings of Americans only spurns them on to bigger and vaarious forms of warmongering. 

It is the only way they can get their hands on money, they are incapable of work, so they have to figure out all kinds of ways to steal it. Bought-off office holders come in very handy for writing and passing laws favorable to Fed/IRS looters.

Both rackets should be discarded. And their leeches with them.

lindaamick's picture


The economy has been sacrificed to the MILITARY.

And the military produces nothing other than DEAD bodies...usually brown ones. :(

fleur de lis's picture

The IRS racket was cooked up to funnel money into the Fed racket. One depends on and cannot survive without the other.

Since the establishment of both scams, the earnings of Americans only spurns them on to bigger and vaarious forms of warmongering. 

It is the only way they can get their hands on money, they are incapable of work, so they have to figure out all kinds of ways to steal it. Bought-off office holders come in very handy for writing and passing laws favorable to Fed/IRS looters.

Both rackets should be discarded. And their leeches with them.

Clothcap's picture

Did the top 5% produce anything useful i.e. anything other than debt currency?

Tuffmug's picture

"If this isn’t “taxation without representation” then I don’t know what is."

The author is an idiot. He actually doesn't know what "taxation without representation" is about.

RockyRacoon's picture

All the while, corporations like GE and the rest get representation without taxation!

Random_Robert's picture

Shrug, Atlas... Shrug already.


Let's get this shit over with and move on to what's next.

franzpick's picture

The way the wage earners are suffering and then going to financial ER, the problem is taxation without resuscitation.

Victor Berry's picture

Social Security/Medicare (a/k/a FICA) is called the payroll tax because it is a tax.  Since the mid 80's, the government has relied on $100B to $150B a year in excess payroll tax revenue to minimize its annual budget deficits.  What do you think Dubya was talking about when he said there was a big file cabinet of IOU's written against Social Security?  Whether or not the $2T to $4T of IOU's are worthless paper or US Treasury Notes (same thing?), I don't know.  Anyway, add another 7.65% of FICA taxes paid by the lower 80% of the population before jumping to the conclusion that the rich are the oppressed people!

P.S.  I bet General Electric's multi-billion dollar income tax refund for 2010 was more than enough to cover its matching 7.65% FICA for employees.    

besnook's picture

because the employer contribution is technically income earned by the employee that must also be included as part of the income tax burden for under 106000 crowd.  i realize the employee would not see a penny of it if the law was changed.

besnook's picture

weak analysis. we have taxation without representation because .gov chooses to represent a tiny portion of the population based upon the myth that they will look after the welfare of the rest of the people so they deserve the largesse of .gov in payment for their collective magnanimous, altruistic hearts.


the main reason ss needs to be restructured is because the fund has reached the negative funding threshold so the bonds .gov replaced the money with have to be paid off with borrowed money bringing the offbook deficit on the books and ramping up the deficit. it is like a double ponzi that has now come due.

Tunga's picture

One Trillion dollars to the first actual human being that can find the definition of the word INCOME in the US Tax code. No not "gross income" or any other modified form of the term. Just plain old "income". 



curmudgery's picture

Pointless.  INCOME TAX only affects income from WORKING.  The Rich let their money work for them, at far lower tax rates.   

Taxation - phutt.  Global economy will always gravitate to lower-tax homes.  Reduce Spending.  Save.  Build for the future.  Don't leave a f'ing mess for our kids and grandkids.   We've squandered too much already.

sasebo's picture

We don't appreciate being bull shitted with %'s. %'s don't buy shit. Give us some after tax DOLLAR incomes. Just like the obnoxious, pompous, asshole politicians (except Ron Paul) the author believes everybody else but him is stupid.  

rsnoble's picture

I'm not buying the 'rich get taxed to death' line anymore.

1.  Asshole #1 makes 100 billion in 1 year.  Pays 30 billion in taxes.  Has 70 billion left to do whatever the fuck they want.

2. Poor man:  Makes 20k, pays 3k or in taxes.  Has to live with parents and apply for food stamps.

Conclusion: fuck the rich, tax the bastards. 

Random_Robert's picture

Whether you know it or not, you just eloquently laid out the just basis (and uniform fairness) of a flat tax...

Now, either go call your Congressman, or shut the hell up. 

honestann's picture

The bottom line is this.  The real, healthy, robust growth in a country comes from startups - new endeavors.  If "regular people" are "slightly wealthy", they have the ability and inclination to "try new things", start new businesses, invent new products and techniques, and generally look for ways to improve life, not just be carried along by the ebb and flow caused by the predator class.  That's the main reason economies crash and burn... they cover up with the very best fancy clothes (the elitist rich), but the millions of cells in their body are crippled, diseased, worn out, or malnourished.  It would be one thing if that 0.1% were millions of times more productive than others.  Fact is, they are destroyers, not producers.

rosiescenario's picture

Agree with you totally but all the government regulations today (especially here in CA) make many folks think twice about starting up their own company. Rather than encourage start ups and job creation, the government does its level best to stifle it.


At the same time the larger corporations are busy outsourcing everything possible to foreign countries while lobbying the government to relax immigration rules so that the few remaining U.S. jobs can be filled with lower paid workers.


Meanwhile the TBTF banks that were bailed out by the tax payers do not lend to new enterprises, but are happy to do so to the larger corporations that are losing us jobs.


Any wonder why the jobs situation is so bleak today?



cdskiller's picture

Really? Is this the kind of total BS I can look forward to reading at zerohedge? Really? Wow. When the standards get lowered to include claptrap, it usually means the end is near, or that the website has been bought. Is Tyler getting out and moving to huffingtonpost?

Hey, Mr. Eisenbeis, you disingenuous punk, go away. We are trying to have a serious conversation, here.

I did it by Occident's picture

if it is no taxation without representation then could it cut the other way.  "No representation without taxation" for those with no skin in the game?

frostfan's picture

If there were a national sales tax, I'd understand bringing up the sales taxes but there isn't.

As for social security,  clearly money put in isn't enough so far money that needs to go out but how exactly is that the fault of the wealthiest 1% or 5%?




Sp00ky's picture

Because the wage cutoff for Social Security taxes is at $106,800.  The 2010 tax rate for Social Security is 6.20%.  Above that $106,800 and you aren't taxed.  The person who earns $10,000 a year pays in $620.00 a year.  The person who earns $100,000 a year pays in $6,621.20 (bear with me, I'll give a link), and the person earning $1,000,000 a year pays in that same $6621.20.

I suppose that if there were not a maximum wage cutoff, that the taxation continued the more one earned, the so-called entitlement programs might not be such a Ponzi.  I wouldn't call it the 'fault' of the top 1% or 5%, but the more they make, the more they get to keep.  But I'm no rocket scientist, and I'm too lazy right now to try to figure out if that would, indeed, make the whole mess more 'equitable' sometime down the road.  It might, or it might not, depending on if the payout at the end of the road were to also increase or if it maxed out somewhere regardless of how much was put in.

GCT's picture

Thanks you spooky.  I try not to treat people badly.  Even when they deserve it.  but some state views and not facts.  I wanted to see  and your is definitely enlightening.  Personally my take on SS is it should be income based to start with and then I agree we need to increase the taxes on it .  But I would never state that until you provided a dam fact.

Still it is not the rich folks fault either way.  I

It is our politicians fault  Thanks for the info.

Greenhead's picture

Many small business employers pay both sides of the tax.  You do too but you don't see it, your employer would pay you more if they didn't have to pay their side of this ponzi tax.

Sp00ky's picture

It is true that the self employed pay both sides - 6.20% + 6.20%.  Saying that the employer would automatically give the employee a 6.20% raise if they weren't paying in their 6.20% share is probably a pipe dream in this day and age.  I'd rather think most would pocket it.  I know I probably would.

Kali's picture

Thank you, for those of us who run small bizzes it is a double tax.  And you are right.  I could pay more if it wasn't for FICA and payroll taxes, etc, etc, etc. 

GCT's picture

Well while we lamblast the poster with rhetoric where are your facts?  I may disagree with the poster but until i see facts from some of you whineing and crying solves nothing.

I am middle class and really do not care who makes what anymore.  I got over it.  You should too.  nothing you are going to do will change a dam thing.  As long as I can etch out a living, I am happy.

Alot of inuendo prove your statements otherwise shut up.

Tunga's picture

"Alot of inuendo prove your statements otherwise shut up." - GCT 

You shut up.

Income is defined as an excise tax. 


FLINT v. STONE TRACY CO., 220 U.S. 107 (1911)


"While the mere declaration contained in a statute that it shall be regarded as a tax of a particular character does not make it such if it is apparent that it cannot be so designated consistently with the meaning and effect of the act, nevertheless the declaration of the lawmaking power is entitled to much weight, and in this statute the intention is expressly declared to impose a special excise tax with respect to the carrying on or doing business by such corporation, joint stock company or association, or company..."


Bottom line GCT; income is generated ONLY by officers of corporations registered within the District of Columbia, US territories or employees of the Federal US Government. BTW when you sign a W-4 you swear to being an "employee" which is defined at 7701 26 USC to mean "someone who works for the US federal government."

Are you feeling duped yet?

gina distrusts gov's picture

All the talk about income tax is annoying  < why because the lower half pay most of the sales tax and other fees that are not figured in the mess and the upper  half benefits the most from the loop holes in the tax laws then corporations  really turn the tax mess upside down earn billions and pay no tax  worse get a refund on taxes they didn't pay

RockyRacoon's picture

The only gauge used was the payment of "personal income taxes".   All other parameters were dismissed for some reason.   Thus, the "analysis" falls far short of complete.   Those who agree with his premise will jump right on this three-wheeled bandwagon and ignore the same facts which give a clearer picture.

Derpin USA's picture

That's what I came here to say. If you only focus on earned income, it's easy to make the middle and lower classes look like total mooches.

If you include capital gains, payroll, SS and Medicare in the equation, it's not nearly the stark contrast described by this article.

WTFx10's picture

So he is old and only made, what maybe 75k at the federal reserve? Asshole

hannah's picture

so a sh&thead that bribes congress makes $25bil dollars a year and pays $100mil dollars in tax...yes he did pay more than me but he also made $25bil dollars which is total the ave jos make $40k a year and pay $20k in taxes and they are better off......!


wait...lets tax the guy that makes $25bil a year 99% so he only brings home a billion is so tought...this article is BS

praps's picture

That top 1% of wealth owners are not producing anything.  They just own most of the country and collect unearned income from the the rest of the country in the form of rent , dividends and coupons.  They are parasites and should be taxed at 99% marginal rate.  They are getting away with legalised robbery.

EvlTheCat's picture

So I assume you feel the same about the lower 1.7% who derive more then 50% of their income and 100% of their health care from federal assistance. What are they producing?  Where does this money come from?  How did they earn their entitlement?  Being born poor, uneducated, broken family, illegal immigrant?

Most of these people work in a service area, such as, mowing lawns, cleaning hotel rooms and flipping burgers.  They are not producing iCrap for people to buy.

I assume poor parasites are better then rich parasites, because their situation isn't their own fault?

A "parasite" has a specific definition, and you may want to look it up before you fling it around arbitrarily.

edwardscpa's picture

This comment and the others in this thread just go to show that there are some broke-ass people reading this blog, which is surprising.  A casual google search (wikipedia, ahem) puts household income of the top 5% in the $160Ks and the 1% in the $300Ks.  If you had any idea just how many folks make $300K/year, and how hard many of them work in jobs other than Wall Street finance, you'd be surprised.  Comparitively rich is not filthy rich. 

I personally blame those in the top 0.05%.  :)  Bastards.


edit - actually, this is spot-on... you feel broke, I feel broke... we're all broke in a relative way.

As of 2005, there were approximately 146,000 (0.1%) households with incomes exceeding $1,500,000, while the top 0.01% or 11,000 households had incomes exceeding $5,500,000. The 400 highest tax payers in the nation had gross annual household incomes exceeding $87,000,000. Household incomes for this group have risen more dramatically than for any other. As a result the gap between those who make less than one and half million dollars annually (99.9% of households) and those who make more (0.1%) has been steadily increasing, prompting The New York Times to proclaim that the "Richest Are Leaving Even the Rich Far Behind." Indeed the income disparities within the top 1.5% are quite drastic. While households in the top 1.5% of households had incomes exceeding $250,000, 443% above the national median, their incomes were still 2200% lower than those of the top .01% of households. One can therefore conclude that almost any household, even those with incomes of $250,000 annually are poor when compared to the top .1%, who in turn are poor compared to the top 0.000267%, the top 400 taxpaying households.[39]

Toma Haja's picture

Hey Ed, somehow I don't think we'll be debating this issue on ZH with anyone in the top .01%.  That being said the whole debate is a diversion.  The real issue is that slippery slope we are sliding down of taxing the middle class (they are the easiest and that is where the bulk of the income can be found).  But we have reached the tipping point where more people claim Representation without Taxation than are those who are willing to fight for limiting the size and scope of government.  Until that dragon is challenged and conquered, the economy will recede and government will continue to gorge.

The Alarmist's picture

Yeah, but am I any more mortal if I compare myself to God?  At some point you accept where you are in life and then endeavour to either do something to improve your own lot or to accept who you are, but you will never be God and you will never drag him down to your level.


Greenhead's picture

The top 1% is NOT a homogenous group.  You have W2 folks and some 1099 folks who are doctors, engineers, airline pilots, small business owners and a few musicians and actors.  And then you have the really wealthy who get the bulk of their income from stock options and capital gains and dividends. 

When the President and Harry Reid talk about raising revenues they are NOT talking about raising revenues for the top, top group, they are talking about hammering the W2 folks 'cause they don't have the same political influence.

edwardscpa's picture

Exactly.  It's capital vs labor, and labor extends well into the top 1%.  Capital is important, but why labor would be taxed more punitively than capital I don't know.  I'd like to see the tax rates flattened somewhat.

JW n FL's picture

Yes the top 1% is supposed to pay 35%..

what is collected verse what is supposed to be paid?????

I could go on but why?

Paul Bogdanich's picture

Utter and complete BS.  For low income earners count what they pay in SSAN and MEDI and then see what you come up with.  The vast majority of the government's cash revenue is from the bottom 4 quintiles of the income distribution.

Sophist Economicus's picture

SSAN and MEDI are not taxes.   They are MANDATORY contributions you make to entitlement programs that you will benefit from (HA HA HA) in the future.    They may feel like a tax, but they are not.   Taxes are what you pay and have no 'direct' recourse to once the money is CONFISCATED from you.   Don't they teach you anything in that union hall?

I did it by Occident's picture

That is why the government says it is not a tax to the people it takes it from, but it did have to say it IS a tax in a SCOTUS case.  Basically, the government doesn't have the right to take property from you (such as money) without due process.  Unless it is a TAX, in which it does have the power to levy taxes without recourse.  Thus it is BOTH a tax and a non-tax, now you understand?  clear right?   ;)

DavosSherman's picture

Why I stopped reading after the second period.

"Prior to joining Cumberland Advisors he was the Executive Vice President and Director of Research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta."