March 5, 2021

Warren’s Wealth Tax Is Just the Beginning

It begins seemingly small, but it will grow and become more destructive.

Nothing like a multimillionaire lecturing other multimillionaires. Elizabeth Warren insists the wealthy don’t pay their “fair share” of taxes. The Massachusetts senator unveiled her latest wealth tax this week, called the Ultra-Millionaire Tax, in which she and cosponsor Bernie Sanders propose that people pay an annual 2% on every dollar of net worth above $50 million and 3% on wealth above $1 billion. On its face, who could oppose requiring this pittance from people who obviously have more than enough? And since it’s supposedly for education and child care, that means it’s for the children!

Warren’s net worth is a mere $8.75 million so her tax assessment would not cost her a dime — unlike Nancy Pelosi, whose estimated net worth is $114 million.

According to Warren, “The Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act would level the playing field and narrow the racial wealth gap by asking the wealthiest 100,000 households in America, or the top 0.05%, to pay their fair share.”

But don’t worry she says, because, “It’s set up now to say we’re not going to collect taxes on any asset worth less than $50,000, so this is not intrusive. It’s not about coming into people’s homes and valuing their Sub Zeros or figuring out what their four-year-old cars are worth.” Wait, we double checked and she said “any asset worth less than $50,000.” Did she mean “any asset worth less than $50 million,” or did she just reveal that she and Sanders would like to eventually tax anything worth more than $50,000? Like your home? Of course, that is exactly where this tax on those “ultra-millionaires” could end up.

Warren said, “If you’ve got a fortune above $50 million, you pay on it. And if your fortune is below $50 million, you don’t. Good for you, either way. I think most people would rather be rich and pay two cents.”

She claims that over the next 10 years it will raise $3.75 trillion.

The Heritage Foundation’s Adam Michel writes, “The latest government data show that in 2018, the top 1% of income earners — those who earned more than $540,000 — earned 21% of all U.S. income while paying 40% of all federal income taxes. The top 10% earned 48% of the income and paid 71% of federal income taxes.”

Ah, but that’s why this is a wealth tax and not an income tax, Warren would say. It’s more akin to a property tax but on your net worth.

The real trouble is two-fold. First, there’s the lost economic activity from all the wealth that is taken back out of the economy and wasted in the bureaucratic bowels of government.

Second is the fact that it won’t stop with 2%. As our Louis DeBroux once wrote regarding the income tax, “At its inception, the top tax rate was a mere 7%, and only on incomes over $4,000 (or $103,500 in 2019 inflation adjusted dollars).” Wouldn’t we all love to pay only 7% now? No, Warren and Company are just getting a foot in the door for more confiscation, more redistribution, and more government.


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