Sanders Is Just Another Tax-Evading Liberal Hypocrite
He's part of the 1%, but pays a pretty low tax rate.
Bernie Sanders has won the hearts of basement-dwelling socialists everywhere with his angry, septuagenarian rants against the evils of capitalism and the greedy One-Percent, his denunciation and vilification of America’s top earners and producers, and a market system he deems “unfair” to the poor and the middle class (he actually once argued that there are poor kids in America because consumers have too many choices of deodorant).
Sanders has also repeatedly criticized anyone who takes advantage of standard tax deductions in order to lower their taxable income, and therefore their effective tax rate. His campaign website states, “We need a progressive tax system in this country which is based on the ability to pay. It is not acceptable that corporate CEOs in this country often enjoy an effective tax rate which is lower than their secretaries.”
Sadly, socialist hero Sanders turns out to be just another garden-variety, hypocritical, tax-evading liberal/progressive. He has perfected the art of the very tax avoidance he claims is immoral. Having spent much of his adult life on unemployment, and occasionally “working” by writing “rape fantasy” for leftist birdcage liners for $50 a pop, plus a brief but failed stint as a carpenter, Sanders avoided paying income taxes for decades by not holding a steady job until he was 40. And when he finally did get a job, it was a government job — he was elected mayor of Burlington, Vermont. He then went on to win election as the only openly socialist member of Congress, where he has been ever since.
Yet even as he rages against the capitalist machine, he indulges in the very acts he condemns. Last week, Sanders released his 2014 income tax return, and it was quite revealing. It shows that Sanders and his wife, with a combined income of $205,271, paid just $27,653 in federal income taxes after taking more than $60,000 in deductions for things like home mortgage interest, real estate taxes, state and local taxes and job-related expenses. This gave him an effective tax rate of just 13.5%, lower than the 15.2% he would have paid had he not taken the deductions, and far lower than the 27.4% rate paid by the “millionaires and billionaires” in this country (according to the IRS, the exorbitant tax rate for “millionaires and billionaires” kicks in for people making as little as $200,000/year).
With an annual income over $200,000, lavish congressional benefits, and two homes (one in Vermont, one in DC), Sanders is far wealthier than the average American struggling just to make ends meet. So, one might ask, with such a level of comfortable wealth, and no children depending on him, why is he trying to weasel out of paying his “fair share”?
Of course, we already know the answer: abject hypocrisy. To quote George Orwell’s socialist utopian novel Animal Farm, “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.” For hard-core leftists like Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and their greedy followers, being a good socialist means never having to say you’re sorry for using government force to take from your neighbor, while simultaneously hiding as much of your own wealth from taxation as possible.
That’s how Joe Biden could keep a straight face while saying we should be happy about paying higher taxes because, “It’s time to be patriotic,” even though he took every deduction available to him while giving a total of just $369 to charity over an entire decade. It’s why Rep. Charlie Rangel, who once chaired the tax-policy writing House Ways and Means Committee, can demand higher taxes and more government spending while hiding income from luxury rental property in the Dominican Republic. It’s how former Treasury Secretary Tim “Turbo Tax” Geithner can demand more taxes while being an admitted tax cheat. It’s how Secretary of State John Kerry (who lives in Massachusetts) can lecture us, the unwashed masses, on the need to sacrifice more of our money at the altar of confiscatory taxation while registering his luxury yacht in neighboring Rhode Island, helping him avoid a one-time sales tax of $437,500 on his $7 million yacht, plus the $70,000 annual excise taxes he’d have had to pay (then again, why should he care? He got his money by marrying the widow of Republican Senator H. John Heinz III of the Heinz food fortune; it wasn’t even his money).
Former Senator Tom Daschle (D-SD), former Governor Bill Richardson (D-NM), Nancy Killefer (Obama nominee for Deputy Director of OMB), Hilda Solis (former Obama Labor Secretary), Ron Kirk (Obama appointee as White House chief trade representative), and literally dozens of Obama administration appointees and aides owed massive amounts of back taxes, and many still do.
Even wealthy liberal businessmen like Warren Buffett, Mark Zuckerberg, George Lucas, Jim Sinegal, and Sergey Brin, who routinely lecture us on the virtues of higher taxation, use every trick at their disposal to lower their effective tax rates or hide taxable income, or just refuse to pay all their taxes.
Liberal Democrats absolutely love to rage against conservatives for greedily wanting to keep more of the money they earn, and making slanderous accusations of corruption, as when former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid accused 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney of not paying taxes. Of course, Romney did release his tax returns, which revealed that he had paid every single penny of taxes owed, plus an incredibly generous amount given to a number of charities. Reid still refused to apologize for his blatant lies.
British Prime Minister Winston Churchill one said, “Socialism is the philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.” Liberal Democrats daily prove that he was spot on.