The Hidden Taxes In Obama's Budget

Tyler Durden's picture

While headlines yesterday crowed and complained of the small rise in the budget and the focus on taxing the wealthy - which admittedly given the peak polarization in political parties is unlikely to actually move into legislation anytime soon - JPMorgan's Michael Cembalest finds perhaps the most controversial part of the proposal hidden deep in the report. While the JPM CIO notes the CBO baseline and alternative scenarios, it is the difference between the $293bn benefit (CBO estimate from last year) and the Administration's new estimate of $584bn that caught his eye as buried on Page 73 of the Green Book were three new taxes on existing tax-efficient 'benefits'. Tax the mass-affluent (>$250k) seems indeed the new motto of this presidency.


JPMorgan - Eye On The Market:

The President’s Budget: An Unhappy Valentine’s Day card for high income taxpayers


The President’s budget was released yesterday. Due to the political impasse between the parties, it seems unlikely to result in tax legislation this year. But as a reflection of the priorities of the Administration, and as a reflection of its stance in any future budget negotiations, it is an interesting document. The proposal aims to raise revenue from upper income taxpayers by any means necessary. [Note: upper income begins at around $200k in adjusted gross income]. The proposal would, according to Administration projections, stabilize the Federal debt close to today’s elevated levels. Revenue increases play a large role, specifically the following three proposals. The second one surprised us the most.

  • reset tax rates on ordinary income, dividends and capital gains for upper income taxpayers back to 2001 levels
  • for upper income taxpayers, include a portion of municipal bond income, pre-tax employee contributions to defined contributed plans, and pre-tax employee and employer health insurance payments as taxable income
  • limit non-charitable itemized deductions such as state/local taxes and mortgage interest for upper income taxpayers



The following chart outlines some basic budget scenarios. The CBO baseline assumes that 3 tough decisions are taken: Bush tax cuts all sunset back to 2001 levels, the AMT is no longer indexed to inflation, and Medicare reimbursements to doctors are cut. The CBO also provided an Alternative Case, assuming no action is taken at all to reduce deficits. Our Realistic case is an estimate of what would happen if Congress sticks to what it agreed in the Budget Control Act and nothing more. Lastly, the purple diamond is the President’s proposal, as estimated by the Office of Management and Budget.

The President’s budget proposal would get around halfway to closing the yawning gap between CBO Alternative Case and the CBO Baseline. There are elements of the Buffett rule here, but the budget does not contain a minimum tax rate on adjusted gross income on those with AGI over $1 million. Instead, many of the clauses apply specifically to those with AGI over $250k (the numbers shown in parentheses are OMB estimates of revenue raised over ten years).

  • Ordinary income rates back to 2001 levels ($442 bn)
  • Dividends taxed at ordinary income rates ($206 bn)
  • Long term capital gains taxed at 20% ($36 bn)
  • Restoration of limits on itemized deductions and exemptions ($165 bn)

In addition, the proposal raises another $584 bn by, among other things, limiting the tax value of itemized deductions (such as state and local income taxes and mortgage interest) to 28%. While this in theory applies to all taxpayers, in practice it will only affect taxpayers with statutory tax rates above 28%, which means people with AGI over $217k.

The most controversial part of the proposal (at least in our view) was buried on page 73 of the Green Book, which is the Treasury’s “General Explanations of the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2013 Revenue Proposals”. We were wondering why the Administration estimated the benefit of the above proposal at $584 bn, when the CBO estimated it at $293 bn just last year.

The answer: this proposal includes a new category of taxable income, which would include your municipal bond income, your contributions to 401k plans and other similar vehicles, and your entire health insurance premium (regardless of who pays it). The approach appears to apply a tax rate to these items equal to the difference between your top statutory tax rate and 28%. For example, a taxpayer subject to a top statutory rate of 35% would pay a 7% tax on this income.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
EscapeKey's picture

Ah don't worry, no need to cry for them - the elite will be exempt in one way or another.

wanklord's picture

WWIII is just around the corner...get ready for the upcoming false flag attacks (either in continental United States or the Strait of Hormuz) that will justify military action against the Islamic Republic of out all of your investments now, because as soon as the first bullet is fired in the Persian Gulf, they will become worthless financial instruments...the writing is on the wall.

February 14, 2012 2:21 PM

US, Europe look at fast but risky penalty on Iran

WASHINGTON — The United States and Europe are considering unprecedented punishment against Iran that could immediately cripple the country's financial lifeline. But it's an extreme option in the banking world that would come with its own costs. The Obama administration wants Iran evicted from SWIFT, an independent financial clearinghouse that is crucial to the country's overseas oil sales. That would leapfrog the current slow-pressure campaign of sanctions aimed at persuading Iran to drop what the U.S. and its allies contend is a drive toward developing and building nuclear weapons. It also perhaps would buy time for the U.S. to persuade Israel not to launch a pre-emptive military strike on Iran this spring. The last-resort financial effort suggests the U.S. and Europe are grasping for ways to show immediate results because economic sanctions have so far failed to force Iran back to nuclear talks But such a penalty could send oil prices soaring when many of the world's economies are still frail. It also could hurt ordinary Iranians and undercut the reputation of SWIFT, a banking hub used by virtually every nation and corporation around the world. The organization's full name is the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications. Meanwhile, violence is increasing. Explosions in Bangkok on Tuesday — Israel's defense minister labeled them an "attempted terrorist attack" — came the day after Israel accused Iran of trying to kill its diplomats in India and Georgia. Those attacks followed the recent killings of Iranian scientists. In the financial world, the United States can't order SWIFT to kick Iran out. But it has leverage in that it can punish the Brussels-based organization's board of directors. Talks are focused now on having Europe make the first move. Short of total expulsion, Washington and representatives of several European nations are in talks over ways to restrict Iran's use of the banking consortium to collect oil profits. European action on SWIFT could come quickly. Representatives from SWIFT were scheduled to meet with European Union officials this week, a U.S. official familiar with the talks said. The official said the meeting was expected to result in the EU ordering SWIFT to expel at least some of its sanctioned banks, though it was unclear whether the order would extend to Iran's Central Bank. The Obama administration is divided over whether the possible gain is worth the risk in trying to threaten SWIFT into kicking out a member country, in part because of concern that it would set back the global financial recovery. Iran remains a global financial player despite years of banking sanctions, and blocking it from using the respected transfer system would be a black mark like no other. More than 40 Iranian banks and institutions use SWIFT to process financial transactions, and losing access to that flow of international funds could badly damage the Islamic republic's economy. It would also probably hurt average Iranians more than the welter of existing banking sanctions already in place since prices for household goods would rise while the value of Iranian currency would drop. Lawyers for SWIFT are holding meetings in Washington. People familiar with the talks say a compromise is possible in which SWIFT would voluntarily bar or restrict Iranian transfers. But if SWIFT fails to act on its own, the U.S. expects Europe to require it to terminate services for Iranian banks, another Obama administration official said. The officials spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly. David Cohen, the Treasury Department's undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, delivered that message to European Union officials in Brussels earlier this month, said the official, who was not authorized to speak publicly and thus spoke only on the condition of anonymity. Mark Dubowitz, a sanctions expert advising the White House on Iran, said the Obama administration is having detailed discussions on the merits and consequences of forcing SWIFT to block Iranian transactions. Some in the administration also prefer to give time for new sanctions on Iran's Central Bank, officially enforced starting just this month, to take hold before layering on a round of even more draconian penalties. SWIFT was involved in a separate controversy when it was revealed in 2006 that it had skirted the EU's strict privacy laws after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks by transferring millions of pieces of personal information from its U.S. offices to American authorities as part of the US Terrorist Finance Tracking Program. "It is an essential cog in the wheel, if not the wheel itself, in international financial transactions and trade," said David Aufhauser, former general counsel at the Treasury Department who worked with SWIFT to set up that information transfer. SWIFT handles cross-border payments for more than 10,000 financial institutions and corporations in 210 countries. It lets users exchange financial information securely and reliably, thereby lowering costs and reducing risk. It operates on trust and neutrality — SWIFT accepts nearly all comers and does not judge the merits of the transactions passing through its secure message system. Its managers generally brush off investigators and enforcement agencies, telling them to take up suspected wrongdoing directly with nations or corporations. Established in 1973, the essential but little-known hub is overseen by major central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank. Lawyers familiar with SWIFT's operations said it could bar processing actions with any Iranian party or third parties representing Iran, though that would open the consortium to complaints of favoritism or political influence. It could permit the processing but quarantine Iranian transactions, or require warnings to those doing business with Iran. Penalties on Iran short of expulsion could allow SWIFT to preserve a greater appearance of neutrality but make business partners think twice, lawyers said. Proponents of blocking Iran from SWIFT say the financial network's own bylaws require that its services not be used to facilitate illegal activities and allow it to prohibit users that are subject to sanctions. While the U.S. and Europe debate options, some American lawmakers are trying to increase pressure on SWIFT. The Senate Banking Committee passed a measure earlier this month directing the White House to press SWIFT to block Iranian entities. A tougher House bill would compel the administration to sanction SWIFT unless it stopped providing services to Iran. The pending legislation has caught the attention of officials at SWIFT. The financial network's general counsel and other advisers requested a meeting with congressional lawmakers and staff next week, Senate aides said. Officials close to the White House say the Obama administration is comfortable with the less restrictive language in the Senate Banking Committee measure, but has concerns that more-binding legislation would leave the U.S. less flexibility in dealing with Iran. SWIFT did not respond to requests for comment. In a brief statement posted on its website, the consortium said it is committed to fighting misuse of the financial system to finance terrorism and has cooperated with enforcement agencies in the U.S. and Europe. Without addressing the specifics of a full expulsion or more limited block on Iranian transactions, SWIFT's statement urged caution. "SWIFT remains committed to maintaining its role as a neutral global financial communications network" while complying with sanctions laws, the statement said. Associated Press writer Slobodan Lekic in Brussels contributed to this report. © 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

barliman's picture

Red arrow for being a thread hijacking troll


P.S.  This is his 100+ offense

Ancona's picture

Who is this Wanklord douchebag, and why is he spamming threads all over the boards with his sillyass bullshit?

Someone needs to give him the boot.

Michael's picture

Obama's new health care rules boil down to;

Two wolfs and a sheep sitting around a camp fire deciding what's for dinner and the sheep is completely unarmed.

The puppet masters are trying to destroy the concept of the republic.

FeralSerf's picture

They already knew what was for dinner.  The fight is over who gets the chops and who gets the neck bones.

Harlequin001's picture

Looks like time to cut government spending...

Joe Davola's picture

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


If you're going to ignore their copyright, at least copy their paragraph formatting.

jtg's picture

Everything you say is true, except that Iran is heading toward acquiring nuclear weapons. That, in combination with their explicit statements that all Jews must be exterminated shoud give you pause. Iranian authorities have recently published the Islamic legal justification for the mass murder of Jews. Doesn't this remind you of Hitler's Mein Kampf, which is very popular in Muslim dominated countries. We were warned then, are again we are being warned. Are we going to wait for another genocide? 1.5M Armenians in WW1, 6M Jew in WW2. Are we going to let this happen again?

barliman's picture



Red flag for encouraging the troll!

Any response to the troll, including disagreeing with him, only encourages the troll.


smlbizman's picture

completly off topic , i apologize...but #5 bail out the banks just beat #4  midnight silver in the 5th at a nose... majestic hope in third...

smlbizman's picture

$2 tri 141.50...

$2 exacta 34.50..

#5 12.00 5.10 3.80

#4           3.50 2.80

#7                   3.80

also rans: good karma,winaholic, and bridge to nowhere...

seek's picture

It's won't matter to the real elite (top 0.1 or .01%). The vast majority of 1%'ers are actually small businessmen such as myself with all of their income being earned, not capital gains. We've been getting fucked quite well by the current tax code, but the health insurance tax is a gigantic "fuck you" to us. Romney and Corzine won't even notice this.

It pisses me off to no end that my actual paid tax rate (fed + state taxes paid / income) is about 36-38%, I'll get none of the benefits I've paid in to (you know means testing will be the next big thing in SSI, assuming the government makes it until I retire, which is doubtful) while the fraudulent-by-fixed-votes republican front runner is paying 15% tax and accidentally omits $3M swiss accounts like it's pocket change.


Raging Debate's picture

Same boat Seek. Here is one for you, I was just shaken down for $621 fine from the IRS for form 941. One of five things did wrong it claimed. Hell, I even made sure my bookeeper filed taxes electronically to avoid such penalties. Made no difference.

I had called a couple weeks after to contest the fine. I was on hold for half hour and the line disconnected. I planned on calling this week but lo and behold! I got certified mail demanding payment immediately or property seizure. How many other small businesses were shaken down like this? Let's say 12 million small businesses x $621 = $7,452,000,000 . Cool, I got to help buy the tailwing of an F22 as we bomb the crap out of Iran. Just what I always wanted to spend my tax dollars on (Sarcasm off).

Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

I am in the same boat. Early 40's, wife and I make over $250k. Can't deduct healthcare already. Can't participate in cafeteria plan. My kid won't get a dime from the gubbamint to go to college, I'll have to pay for it all, or else let her become a debt slave.  All of those things already equate to a tax INCREASE on me because if I don't get the benefit from the gubbamint and someone else does, thats the same thing as a tax increase.  Its such a joke.

As for Social Security and Medicare, I wholeheartedly support the tax holiday.  I'd rather keep that money in my pocket now, because I will never see a dime of it by the time I retire.  Or, I'll get my check but it will buy about one loaf of bread a month.  These ponzi's are going to crash and burn someday soon.  Why should the people on it now, who take out WAY WAY more than they put into it by the way, get their money and I don't?  F em.

And this $250K number they throw around as being in the top 1%, I say bullshit.  There are way more people making that kind of money than they are telling us.  Its another bullshit statistic brought to you by the BLBS.  No one making that is living like Bill Gates or Warren Buffet.  What a load of shit.

DaddabhaJataka's picture

Maybe your child should work their way through college.

Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

My kid started working and SAVING money at age 14.  She won't be able to "work" her way thru college.  You think the kids going to college now really work their way thru?  They get all kinds of aid from the gubbamint that my kid won't get because my wife and I actually work for a living.

seek's picture

Given where tuition is, this isn't a realisitc of an option anymore outside of community college.

My stepdaughter had aspirations of an Ivy League school, but I showed her the financial implications of such, and settled on community college for the first couple years before transfering into a state university -- and even that will require quite a bit of financial help from me. Thanks to the same crap that went on in mortgages happening in college financing, that system is just as screwed up as housing is.

GeezerGeek's picture

I'm curious. What does a young person study in college that will result in employment these days? My son already is out of college, having switched from computer science (a great profession when I started in it in 1970) to accounting, he's doing OK. Not all of his friends did so well.

seek's picture

I honestly have no idea. I've done some mentoring and this environment is incredibly hostile to anyone smart and ambitious.

I think agricultural sciences may be a good one, one young woman I talked with was actually recruited into that by the grocery chain she worked for, and it made sense to me, but I have doubts about the pay. I've also heard indirectly that petroleum engineers are in very high demand and had a couple reports of $80K salaries fresh out of mining college with a BS degree. I think this one probably will have a long future, considering that exploration will need to increase as supply drops off, and the oil companies will be going after a lot more small fields which will in turn require many more engineers. The demand seems to be there.

I'm pointing my step daughter at basic business management with an emphasis on the financial side (with profit margins tightening, the nuts-and-bolts of business will become much more important in my opinion.) She doesn't seem that interested, and it may not have a high paying job waiting at the end, but I think it would offer the most employment options for her with a reasonable starting salary -- I'm more concerned about employment than wages for her.

Alternative energy (specifically solar) might be a career path in the southwest, but I can already see signs of a corporate takeover of the business, and it seems once big companies are involved the opportunities decline rapidly.

I'm sure post-collapse a lot of opportunites will open up, though. With a massive shift to locally-oriented business, many chances to make a comfortable living (but perhaps not getting rich) will reappear.


Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Might as well save the tuition and become a gubbamint sponsored turd counter or ditch digger or ditch filler inner.  They will pay you a living wage.

I did it by Occident's picture

I think the modern equivalent is all those lawyers/accountants and others that are paid handsomely to comply with the taxcode (and us lay people having to pay them) and other regulatory nonsense that is "not value added."  Basically the equivalent taking the best and brightest our country has and using them in the fields digging up holes and filling them up again.  Imagine if there were a flat tax and no need for army of bureaucrats and other "compliance officers".  If just a fraction of those had become doctors, scientists or engineers we'd be way better off. 

Quantum Nucleonics's picture

That's really no longer possible in the traditional sense.  Government guaranteed student loans have caused college tuition to soar.  Colleges get cash from the government, with which they fund ever expanding and useless majors.  Colleges and universities are completely protected from the laws of supply and demand by government loan guarantees and subsidies.  In a real market, the failure of the army of liberal arts majors to find gainful employment would feed back to the schools.

GeezerGeek's picture

I suspect that there are many readerw who would love to be in your income bracket despite the drawbacks you mention. I do agree that taxes are way too high, at all levels, but your comment about those of us collecting SS irks me.

You ask "Why should the people on it now, who take out WAY WAY more than they put into it by the way, get their money and I don't?"

I just started collecting after being forced to pay into it for 40 years. It will take at least 10 years for me to break even, and that doesn't include my employers' portions. If I had been able to keep the money myself and invest it, I'd be set for life (ignoring the possibility of hyperinflation) and would have the remainder as part of my estate. So while I agree that Social Security is a horrible system and wish it had never existed, I feel slighted when you suggest I'm getting something I didn't put in. Medicare is in a totally different category as far as I'm concerned.

I congratulate you and your wife on making that much (unless you're a lawyer or politician), and I realize that where one lives has a lot to do with how well one can live on that amount. Still, I suggest being more circumspect in your generalities. All we can do is register our complaints in the voting booth or with our feet.

blunderdog's picture

What you're seeing is the remorse of the petit-bourgeosie.

Folks thought they would be able to work their way to becoming rich, but it just doesn't really work like that.  A high salary just makes you the best-paid of the working class. 

It's obvious why there's so much anger at Obama for claiming $250,000/year makes you rich.

xela2200's picture

In with a few years of inflation, there will be an increasing percentage in that bracket until it becomes 100%. It is just a sneaky way to introduce a tax on people. Period.

PrinceDraxx's picture

The problem is not the rich who will not pay anything more. The problem is the rest of us, who in 2, 5 or 10 years from now will also be included in the happy band of folks who are having to pay those new taxes due to inflation or outright lowering of the level of inclusion. If you think it won't happen, open up a history book and look at how few were going to have to pay income taxes when it started back in 1913.

DaveyJones's picture

"your entire health insurance premium"  Another way to "lower health cost" for the common folk.  What a joke 

since "the elite" don't go to jail anymore, I doubt they care if they violate tax law. That said, making 250 does not get you the Goldman exception /access now does it. 


NotApplicable's picture

Yeah, because as we all know, if you want more of something, you tax it.

DaveyJones's picture

nice and yes, since small businesses are doing so well, hiring people left and right and handing out generous health care, this will help. Stupidity and corruption is such a chicken and egg thing when it comes to our elected 

Dermasolarapaterraphatrima's picture

My health insurance premium shot up 38% due to Obamacare so this budget/law/tax or whatever the heck it is should be fun.

LawsofPhysics's picture

Do your job well, accumulate physical assets of real value along the way and sleep at night.  All paper promises are made to be broken.  Taxes only work when you can collect them and we are all becoming greek at an exponential rate.

Corn1945's picture

I'm going with the brown line on the chart.

I suspect the tax battle at the end of 2012 goes something like this:

Obama: Extend the tax cuts for everyone except trillionaires!!!! (i.e. people making $200K)

Republics: No. Everyone gets their tax cuts extended or no one does.

Obama: Errr....Ok.

hwwesq3's picture

The following is a schedule showing the Federalmarginal income tax rateimposed on each level oftaxable incomeof a single (unmarried) individual under the 1954 Code:

Income level Tax rate 2008 PPC Adjusted Income [2] up to $2,000.00 20% up to $37,500.00 $2,000.01 - $4,000.00 22% $37,500 - 75,000 $4,000.01 - $6,000.00 26% $75,000 - 112,500 $6,000.01 - $8,000.00 30% $112,500 - 150,000 $8,000.01 - $10,000.00 34% $150,000 - 187,500 $10,000.01 - $12,000.00 38% $187,500 - 225,000 $12,000.01 - $14,000.00 43% $225,000 - 262,500 $14,000.01 - $16,000.00 47% $262,500 - 300,000 $16,000.01 - $18,000.00 50% $300,000 - 337,500 $18,000.01 - $20,000.00 53% $337,500 - 375,000 $20,000.01 - $22,000.00 56% $375,000 - 412,500 $22,000.01 - $26,000.00 59% $412,500 - 487,500 $26,000.01 - $32,000.00 62% $487,500 - 600,000 $32,000.01 - $38,000.00 65% $600,000 - 712,500 $38,000.01 - $44,000.00 69% $712,500 - 825,000 $44,000.01 - $50,000.00 72% $825,000 - 937,500 $50,000.01 - $60,000.00 75% $937,500 - 1,125,000 $60,000.01 - $70,000.00 78% $1,125,000 - 1,312,500 $70,000.01 - $80,000.00 81% $1,312,500 - 1,500,000 $80,000.01 - $90,000.00 84% $1,500,000 - $1,687,500 $90,000.01 - $100,000.00 87% $1,687,500 - $1,875,000 $100,000.01 - $150,000.00 89% $1,875,000 - $2,812,500 $150,000.01 - $ 200,000.00 90% $2,812,500 - $3,750,000 $200,000.01 or more 91% $3,750,000 or more

  • Source: Internal Revenue Code of 1954, Pub.L. 83-591, 68A Stat. 5, enacted August 16, 1954 (modified from text of the statute).

Spacemoose's picture

do you know what deductions were allowed in 1950 that are not allowed today?  the reason i ask is that i was giddy with anticipation when the reagan tax cuts were enacted only to find, to my severe disappointment, that my tax liability was pretty much the same.  the right hand giveth and the left hand taketh away.    

Cpl Hicks's picture

Are you giddy at the thought of four more years of Obama? Or not?

GeezerGeek's picture

Gagging, not giddy. Ditto for Romney, Newt, Santorum.

We really need an option on ballots that says "leave the position/office empty", and apply it at all levels.

seek's picture

It should be noted these are rates, but they don't capture how many income exemptions there were. The effective tax rates were much lower than the marginal rates in the 50s. Today the spread between effective and actual is much smaller for earned income.

In spite of all the changes over the past 50 years, there's very little variation in income tax revenue/GDP. Laffer was right.


Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

This is why the only solution is to throw this bloated behemouth tax code out and implement a FLAT TAX.  The current code is nothing more than a conduit for both parties to fluff their own constituents and try to buy more.  Where are the so called conservatives and tea partiers on this?  Its so obvious a tax overhaul is the only solution.  Instead we waste our time on things like McCain-Fiengold to take money out of politics. 

Raging Debate's picture

Agree Beam Me Up. I spent $60k on tax compliance last year, near 15% GROSS revenue. The current tax code indeed is a method of favoring constituents and punishing non constituents.

I did it by Occident's picture

I also agree, compliance in an of itself is a "tax" and thus an opportunity cost in the long run.  To think all that wasted talent of millions of people being used up in the process when they could be doing other more productive things.

Stuck on Zero's picture

Throw out all taxes except a VAT.  End all property taxes.  They are evil.  They destroy the entire concept of private property.

xela2200's picture

100% ++

Might not be the most fair, but it encourages savings and investing. Afterall, what tax is truly fair?

I agree on the property taxes. Place a lien on the property maybe, but nobody should be able to take it away from the owner.

GeezerGeek's picture

The only way we'll get rid of the current income tax system, short of a violent revolution, would be to have Iran set off an electro-magnetic pulse weapon and fry all the computers in the country. If Timmy can't even get his taxes right with Turbo Tax, imagine what it would be like if the IRS and all the taxpayers had to rely on paper and pencils, and maybe an abacus or mechanical adding machine.

That would be about the only positive benefit of EMP. I'm too addicted to ZH to want to forego my computers, internet connection, etc.

masterinchancery's picture

Many working people back then paid hardly any federal taxes and no state taxes.

Central Bankster's picture

1954 =$35 gold, today= $1725 = 50:1.

$2000 in 1954 is $100k today. Rates are much higher on the middle class than ever, and lower than ever on the lower class.

I do not mean to imply support for taxation, only to destroy your pathetic intellectual dishonesty.