I'm sorry, Brad, but your argument (besides being a deliberately inaccurate use of statistics) is entire selfish and self-centered in the worst way. It also defines everything that's wrong the today's GOP and why I, and MANY others, have turned away. They've squeezed so much blood out of America that they've literally broken the middle class.
No, what it does is highlight the difference between liberals and conservatives.
Liberals think that their beliefs determine whether they're selfish or not. Conservatives think that it's their actions that define whether they are selfish or not.
For example, I give more to charity in one year than Joe Biden has given in the last 10 years.
Liberals believe that it's compassionate to support policies that have the goverment confiscate property from one person to give to another based on "need".
Conservatives believe that compassion is a personal responsibility that does not involve the government.
The GOP hasn't squeezed any blood out of the middle class. I am not sure how you can argue that.
As a contrast, let me point out that the people who work for me earn six figure salaries to start. And they, and myself, are overwhelmingly pro-Obama. Sure a couple of them are Ayn Rand types, but I'm much more of a Warren Buffet person myself, in that I don't mind paying taxes. This country has been very good to me and as long as I see my money being spent wisely and for the common good, I don't have any problem chipping in my fair share.
I am not sure what this has to do with anything. My point still stands, the only reason the elections are close, statistically, is because those who do not pay any federal income taxes are overwhelmingly voting for the candidate that promises to give them the most free goodies paid for by money confiscated by other Americans.
I don't mind paying taxes either. I feel confident in saying that I pay more than anyone else participating in this thread. But I don't think the government has an inherent right to my earnings in order to simply hand it to someone else who has done nothing in return. That's not "the common good" that's charity.
But under this administration we have seen ALL of our dollars (rich and poor) drop to nearly 1/2 their value. You're beginning to see the delayed inflation of that right now, in everything you buy. We've seen the health care premiums we pay as employers go through the roof, while benefits have gone to utter shit - so we're eating more cost and losing morale...a very bad recipe indeed. We've watched the deficit under this "president" become higher than all of the previous Presidents combined. And we've seen 4,000+ of our troops die in a needless war for Cheney's graft while the real saboteurs of our nation, at home and abroad, lounge around unscathed and unpunished.
You're blaming Bush for the current financial crisis? You're kidding right? I am not going to touch the whole Iraq thing as we'll have to just agree to disagree.
The American Dream itself is in danger, Brad. And you, of all the businessmen I know, should be most wary of the current state of affairs. For your business is clearly a luxury item, not a necessity, to anyone..well except for me, I'd die without being able to work my way and you guys, bless you, make that possible.
But seriously, your products are on the frontline of the dispensible disposable income scale and I'd think that seeing consumer confidence return (and hence the stock market) might be higher on your list of priorities than a 1-2% income shift. After all, who cares if your taxes are cut yet again if you aren't making any money?
Everything beyond food, clothing, and shelter are luxuries.
Your belief rests on the assumption that businesses aren't adaptable. I've led my company through the collapse of its entire platform (OS/2) where revenue dropped within 18 months to 20% of where it was previously. That said, as a worldwide software developer of hundreds of different products, I feel confident in saying that we'll be alright.
I'd rather make a LOT more money and pay a wee bit more in taxes. But then again, I never was a "penny wise, pound foolish" kind of person. Funny thing, only one of the billionaires I have worked with would disagree with me on this...and he inherited his money. Ahem.
Perhaps you would list the billionaires you work with. For all we know, your sampling is of billionaire movie moguls or something.
Certainly Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have no problem with other people's taxes going up. After all, they made nearly all their money off capital gains (15% tax rate).
Bill Gates and Warren Buffet pay lower taxes than I do as a percent. So it doesn't shock me that they are willing to pay more.
Unlike them, my tax rate is at 35% -- over twice as high as theirs. Because I don't earn my money selling stock but rather through salary like most Americans.
But let's stick with documentated facts:
Since people seem to be okay with using CNN as "fair and balanced" let's use their 2004 exit poll data:
Bush beat Kerry in the last election with every income segment that makes over $50k per year by over 10 points!
The only reason the election was even remotely close is because to the part of the electorate that pays little to no taxes Kerry won by over 20 points.
So my statement stands: People who actually PAY taxes tend to vote for the GOP candidate and the people waiting to be given money taken from others tend to vote for the Democrat. While you may know people in person who make lots of money and that's very interesting and all, it's irrelevant to the facts at hand.