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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Dec. 24, 2009 7 Teves 5770

The War Against the Wannabe Rich

By Victor Davis Hanson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | There is class warfare going on in this country — but it's not against the established rich. It's against those who are trying to become wealthy.


President Obama has declared that those who make over $200,000 will pay higher income taxes. Caps on payroll taxes are supposed to come off as well for the upper class. Envisioned estate taxes will take 45 percent of individual inheritances valued over $3.5 million. Many states have also hiked their income taxes on the upper brackets.


Again, most of those targeted are not the already rich — a Warren Buffett or Bill Gates — but millions of the wannabe rich. They may have achieved larger-than-average annual incomes, but they're not the multimillionaire speculators on Wall Street who nearly wrecked the American economy in search of huge bonuses and payoffs. Most are instead professionals and small-business owners who take enormous risks in hopes of being well-off and passing their wealth on to their children.


Oddly, much of the populist rhetoric about the need to gouge the newly affluent is voiced by the entrenched wealthy, who don't have to care how high taxes go, given their own vast fortunes.


Take Bill Gates Sr. who is clamoring for higher estate taxes on inheritances. But such advocacy comes easy for him. After all, he is the father of the richest man in the world — someone who clearly needs no inheritance.


Billionaires also often set up charitable foundations to ensure their estates are channeled to their own preferences rather than simply given over to a needy U.S. Treasury. In contrast, moderately affluent business owners or farmers often leave enough property for their heirs to pay death taxes, but not enough to set up tax-exempt charitable foundations.

Letter from JWR publisher


Warren Buffett also wants higher income taxes on the wealthy. He once confessed that thanks to all sorts of write-offs, he had paid only about 17 percent of his gross income in federal taxes, a lower rate than many employees in his office.


But Buffett like Bill Gates Jr. is worth many billions of dollars. In truth, he has so much money that no amount of taxes would affect him much. A combined tax bite of 60 percent of his annual income would still leave Buffett each year with millions. Yet the same rate could cripple a business owner making $300,000 in annual income.


Often those in government claim that their higher taxes proposals are simply targeting the affluent like themselves — proof of their own selflessness. President Obama, for example, has complained that the well-off like himself could afford to pay more.


But unlike politicians in Washington, most upscale Americans in private enterprise do not receive free government perks and lavish pensions. Nor are they guaranteed lucrative post-political lobbying and speaking careers.


Focusing tax hikes on those who in some years make between $200,000 and $500,000 makes no sense in a recession for a variety of reasons. They are neither the speculators who caused the panic of 2008 nor the Washington politicians who are bankrupting the country.


Instead, most are small-business owners who hire the majority of the nation's employees. But faced with the talk of higher taxes, more regulations and hostile rhetoric, they will remain confused, and so retrench rather than expand.


With the proposed new income, payroll and health-care tax rates, along with increased state and local taxes, many business owners fear that 60 percent to 70 percent of their income will go to the government. That does not seem a good way to convince small businesses to hire more workers in hopes of greater rewards.


Income is also not the only barometer of affluence. Two-hundred thousand dollars is quite a lot of annual money in Kansas, but does not always go so far in San Jose, where modest houses often cost well over half a million dollars. For those whose children do not qualify for need-based scholarships, a private liberal-arts education can easily set a parent back $200,000 per child over four years.


Why the war against the productive classes who want to be rich?


Maybe it is because they are not as numerous as the proverbial middle class. Perhaps they do not earn our empathy that is properly accorded to the poor. They surely lack the status and insider connections that accrue to the very rich.


Yet continue to punish and demonize them, and the country will grind to a halt — as we are seeing now.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.


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