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Letter: Rich should pay their share of taxes

Letter: Rich should pay their share of taxes

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On June 9 the Tribune ran an AP article researched by ProPublica headed "Uber-rich often pay very little in taxes.''

The statement that caught my eye was "Using calculations by Forbes magazine, ProPublica noted that the wealth of the 25 richest Americans collectively jumped by $401 billion from 20 14 to 2018. They paid $13.6 billion in federal income taxes over those years -- equal to just 3.4% of the increase in their wealth."

It seems to me that too many of the wrong people believe Leona Helmsley's brazen, "Only little people pay taxes."

As one of the little people I submit the following calculation: I will compare a year's wages at $15/hour with $1 billion, easing off from the $4 billion indicated above. $31,200 goes into $1 billion about 32,000 times. 32,000 times! -- a gap far too wide to be covered by smarts and hard work. The cries of "Socialism! Socialism!" that we are always hearing may be a bit misplaced.

Wealthy people who do not have a salaried job are taxed only when they realize a gain like the sale of stocks or a building, and we see the results -- taxed only 3.4%. We just can't let it be that much fun. The law must require that wealthy people keep track of their wealth so they can be taxed like everyone else.

Now I turn to a related story that I found on the internet. Under Jeff Bezos' wealth and specifically in History of Jeff Bezos in Timeline -- Popular Timelines I find that “his net worth increased to $150 billion in July 2018. In August 2020, according to Forbes, he had a net worth exceeding $200 billion."

There ought to be a law.

Arman Goplen, Bismarck


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