On Tax Day, a Fresh Perspective on Taxes

With the deadline for filing state and federal tax returns upon us, the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center has pulled together resources from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and Demos' Taxes Matter Project to provide a fresh perspective on how we think about taxes.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities does a nice job painting a picture of how our tax system works with charts and graphics. For Tax Day, the Center has put together a series of telling charts, including this one showing that most of the federal budget goes toward defense spending, Social Security and major health programs like Medicare:

Most of Budget Goes Toward Defense, Social Security and Major Health Programs

We also share Demos' Top 10 Tax Stats, which may make your head hurt. A few highlights:

1. The government collected less in taxes in 2010 than it has in over three generations, and tax rates are at historic lows.

2. The Bush tax cuts added $1.7 trillion to the nation’s debt over 2001-2008, which is more than it would cost to send 24 million kids to four-year public universities.

3. Corporate income taxes totaled about 1 percent of GDP this year, 60% lower than 40 years ago.

4. General Electric, which reported $5 billion in US profits, paid ZERO taxes this year. Exxon Mobil, the most profitable corporation in history, paid ZERO federal taxes in 2009.

5. The Bush tax legacy means we currently tax wealth less than work: middle-income paychecks are taxed at 25% compared to stock dividends and capital gains for the wealthiest, which are taxed at a top rate of only 15%.

Read the full list here.

And don't forget to get to the Post Office — or hit the e-file button — before midnight tonight!

Comments

0 comments posted

Post new comment

Comment Policy:

Thank you for joining the conversation. Comments are limited to 1,500 characters and are subject to approval and moderation. We reserve the right to remove comments that:

  • are injurious, defamatory, profane, off-topic or inappropriate;
  • contain personal attacks or racist, sexist, homophobic, or other slurs;
  • solicit and/or advertise for personal blogs and websites or to sell products or services;
  • may infringe the copyright or intellectual property rights of others or other applicable laws or regulations; or
  • are otherwise inconsistent with the goals of this blog.

Posted comments do not necessarily represent the views of the Keystone Research Center or Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center and do not constitute official endorsement by either organization. Please note that comments will be approved during the Keystone Research Center's business hours.

If you have questions, please contact [email protected]

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <p> <img>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.