Should The Rich Be Taxed? 💸🚕

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    Be careful with your accusations. I did not smear any class of people. Uncle Ben specifically asked me about those people with trusts/inherited wealth I’ve met. I gave my observations about them,

    My largest Trust that I administer has a current value of more than $30 Million US. It is now paying out to the 5th generation. Under my management it has sustained a return in excess of 8% for more than 34 years. The great grandparents who established the family Trusts were landlords dating back to the early 1900s. They never sold a building and never raised rent once a tenant was in place. The current 40-50 year old generation has this same philosophy about holding onto assets and keeping tenants long term. For the past 30 years it has been money making money through financial instrument investments. 80% of the return is paid out to family members and 10 percent is given to charities, 10 percent is for overhead.
    Trusts don’t pay income taxes, the beneficiaries do, This is why almost all the beneficiaries live in Florida (no state income tax).


    All taxation is theft. Like Mafia protection money.

    That being said, taxation is a necessary theft, a necessary evil in order to have a functioning society. So we tax because we must to form the society we all benefit from. But we must never forget that ultimately we are robbing Peter to pay Paul. So every time we increase taxes we should be asking ourselves, is it necessary to steal someone’s property? Are our motives pure or driven by jealousy? Can we achieve the same goals without the tax increase through better budgeting and greater efficiency?

    It isn’t surprising that most people support a very high marginal rate because it is other people’s money that they are stealing. That does not make it right, it just makes it more likely that the motivation behind the legislation is not pure.


    NY 2018 State income tax top rate 8.82%
    PLUS there are city or county income tax in some places such as NYC and Yonkers, NYC is almost 4%

    CT State income tops out at under 7%, no state or county income tax.
    Very few people leave CT because of the income tax rate, more because of the stagnant economy, and local property tax rates and northern weather

    I have many clients who now have Florida residency for tax purposes and still own homes an businesses in CT. They moved, but are still here.

    I have not done my 2018 taxes yet, but will be paying at least 30K more than 2017 tax year due to changes in the IRS code pushed through by Trump. B”H I can afford it, but many of my neighbors cannot. It doesn’t take much of a house and income to exceed the 10K deductible limit now in force.


    Please show me where I am being generous with someone else’s money as you state.
    I said I’d be willing to pay an income tax rate of 50%.
    I don’t set tax rates or impose them, I have one vote at the ballot box. I am no longer an elected official and when I was I was not one who set tax rates.

    Someone has to pay for the roads we drive on, the military, schools, libraries, plowing the snow, etc and that takes money (tax revenue).

    Please keep in mind that the top tax rate is not on every dollar, the rate rises as income rises. After a certain amount of income, needs are more than adequately met and more can be paid in tax for the greater good.
    Believe me, I don’t need 73% of every dollar earned in excess of 600K (includes spouse). I could live just fine keeping 50% of earnings above 600K and think most would say the same.

    Ben Levi

    So once second?
    CT Lawyer the well known Democrat is stating that
    a) Raising taxes hurts Middle class people (the Republican tax law did not raise taxes they simply said that tax above state taxes above 10,000$ could not be deducted, thus it’s a problem in states with high state taxes.
    b) People who would have to pay high taxes move out of the state instead of paying the high tax rate.
    Sounds pretty much like Republican arguments.

    Ben Levi

    Again CT Lawyer.
    Regardless of how you can live and how much money you need
    When you vote to raise taxes on other people you are being generous with their money.


    Respectfully, you all miss the point. We are already taxed too much. Giving the politicians more money will never satisfy them. How about trying to run the government on the money that they already take from us?

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “Regardless of how you can live and how much money you need
    When you vote to raise taxes on other people you are being generous with their money.”
    I think he was implying he’s being generous with his own money by voting that way. Are you just going to keep prodding the poor guy until he shows you a pay stub or something?

    Most of the flat tax plans proposed by primary candidates (not Trump) would have raised taxes on the poor. That would kind of need to happen by definition of a flat tax. I doubt you were whining then about them wanting to be generous with poor people’s money. When they used taxpayer money to bail out Wall Street, were you upset? Or do you only get upset when they help people who actually need it?

    And, by the way, before I fall into the trap, we weren’t the ones that brought up entitlements or “Robin Hood” on this thread. Supporting a progressive tax plan is not the same thing as supporting wealth redistribution. I don’t care if you use the money to bomb Iran, or bulldoze Planned Parenthood’s as long as, whatever the operation is, it’s funded appropriately according to taxpayer’s means.

    Ben Levi

    First off,
    Conservatives were actually extremely upset over the Wall Street bailouts.
    They were excoriated for putting the economy at risk by vetoing it at first.
    That is simply a historical fact.
    Secondly a “progressive” tax rate is not wealth “redistribution if it used for the “collective” good.
    In other words if a progressive tax rate is used to build roads that benefit the wealthy the same as the poor then you are not taking money from the wealthy to give to the poor.
    You are simply taking from each what they can to create the infrastructure needed for a functioning society.
    But simply saying.
    “Well Mr So and So has enough money to live on so I think I can better use his money by giving it to someone else” may be something that is arguably true but it is at it’s very core wealth redistribution.
    You are taking from the rich and giving to the poor.
    In Judaism it’s called stealing.
    At least credit Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez for being honest about what they would like to do.

    Avi K

    So far as the proper tax system is concerned, the default halachic position (as in all money matters custom overrides) is that the rich should pay more for things that benefit property and they should pay equally for those that benefit life. For example, if a police force is only concerned with thieves the rich should pay a higher fee. If it is concerned about murderers the rich and the poor should pay equally.


    @Ben Levi
    You are making false accusations
    I have never voted to raise taxes on other people as you claim.
    Saying I am willing to pay higher taxes is not the same thing.
    I do not live in a town where tax rate is subject to a plebiscite (although that is the system less than 3 miles from my home),

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “Secondly a “progressive” tax rate is not wealth “redistribution if it used for the “collective” good.”
    That’s exactly what I said in my last post. None of us here have supported wealth distribution, no matter how much you want to claim we have and dishonestly use quotes in your posts to make it look like we said stuff we never said. Not even sure what you meant to accomplish putting the word progressive in quotes. Do you guys realize it has nothing to do with the word progressive in the political sense when used in this context?

    The bailouts were started by Bush. If you believe in trickle-down economics, why wouldn’t you take it out to its logical conclusion and support the bailouts? I deny the entire concept, so I’m at least consistent.


    The rationale behind championing trickle down and not supporting bailouts is threefold
    Firstly it’s not actually supporting trickle down, so much as it is a recognition of the fact that trickle down is the least of the evils when balancing taxation and keeping what you earn.
    Secondly a bailout is a handout. It happens to be usually to the rich not the poor but it’s a handout just the same. The exact opposite of the idea behind trickle down which says leave people alone they will spend the money they earned and eventually it will reach everyone without external help.
    Thirdly. If they need a bailout it’s usually because they failed to use their money properly. So giving them more money will probably just mean more mismanagement and or misappropriation.

    But I have a question for you.
    You have stated multiple times that you have no issue with paying higher taxes. Even up to 50% of your earnings above 600.000
    So why don’t you?
    The government allows you to pay extra.
    Only if others also do it are you willing? Why should others actions impact yours?
    You obviously feel the government would do more good with your money. So do it now

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “Secondly a bailout is a handout.”
    So is a tax cut. Whether the government hands you a million dollars, or they charge you a million less on taxes, the end result is the same for everyone. The government now has to get the million dollars from elsewhere, and the rich guy is a million dollars richer.

    The differentiation between stimulus packages and tax cuts for the wealthy is arbitrary and emotional. They both serve the same purpose, are backed up by the same theory, and achieve the same results. It’s inconsistent to support one and not the other.

    Why don’t you people just come clean and say you don’t like the current system because you think rich people shouldn’t have to pay more? Are you worried the world sees flat-taxers for what they really are, radical libertarians?


    Even if you believe in radical libertarianism in principle, you still have to put morals before politics. And stealing is not as bad as letting people starve to death.


    “Secondly a bailout is a handout.”
    So is a tax cut.
    not really
    a tax cut lets you keep more of what YOU earned
    A bailout gives you what OTHERS earned
    only if you start with the premise that all money belongs to the government unless… then they are both the same. ie government letting you keep/have more money
    that is the fundamental difference
    conservatives understand that money belongs to the one who earned it
    liberals feel all money belongs to the government
    a tax cut means, even though the government took alot of my money last year, they will take less this year.

    do i like the current tax system? no.
    do i have a better system? not necessarily
    but that doesnt mean that things dont have clear definitions



    a “direct quote” without being “deceiving”:

    “What made you change your mind?”
    I met more people in life.

    Wow. and people are still responding to you.

    Ben L

    To CT Lawyer
    I fail to see how I am misrepresenting your views.
    You have stated explicit support for candidates running on a platform of raising taxes.
    I.e taking more of other peoples money.
    You have stated this is a main reason that you support them.
    In other words you have expressed support for the idea that one should be generous with other peoples money.

    TO Neville
    If I I work and earn money then how and by what right does it belong to you?

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “a tax cut lets you keep more of what YOU earned. A bailout gives you what OTHERS earned”
    Semantics. The tax burden just gets shifted to the middle/lower classes. Same thing as taking their money and giving it away; it just sounds better on the surface.

    “conservatives understand that money belongs to the one who earned it liberals feel all money belongs to the government”
    No liberal in the history of this country has ever claimed to believe that or said anything even close to it. There are virtually infinitely many options to chose from if you want to criticize liberals, you don’t need to go making up your own.

    I’m not a liberal either. But, when we get to the point that someone gets called a communist for supporting the fairness of the current, American tax system, maybe you should consider that the conservatives have whiny snowflakes too; they’re just triggered by different topics like taxes. And, frankly, the maturity of the “taxation is theft” point is not inherently any better than the maturity of supporting communism. They’re both juvenile and ridiculous.


    While we primarily have a market economy its not pureymarket and partial command economy which is why we have governments that regulate and tax.

    Yet it shouldnt be pushed further away from a market economy as that is the basis of a good economy which relies on incentives.


    a tax cut mans i keep my money
    what the gvmnt does to make up that shortfall is not my business
    let them borrow “kick the can infinitely down the road”
    stop supporting gender bender surgeries
    stop funding the arts
    stop paying Palestinian terrorists
    i dont care

    a bailout is directly giving me someone elses money that i never earned (ill take it if offered)
    its not semantics any more than saying stealing your money is the same as you spending it in my store
    either way i end up with it and you dont have it anymore
    every thing else is just semantics? right?
    i think not


    Which candidates running on a platform of raising taxes did explicitly support?
    I know I voted against Trump.
    Just because a tax increase is in a platform does NOT mean it is the reason I vote for a particular candidate. I’ve never read a party of candidate’s platform (outside of my own candidacy for local office) and found that I agreed with 100% of the words therein.
    I don’t support school vouchers, I do support increased funding for libraries and schools, if this requires increased taxes, the increase is not the reason for my vote.
    I voted in favor of a sewer tax in our town 25 years ago, as I believed sanitary sewers were better for public health than septic tanks, and cesspools.


    But I have a question for you.
    You have stated multiple times that you have no issue with paying higher taxes. Even up to 50% of your earnings above 600.000
    So why don’t you?
    The government allows you to pay extra.
    Only if others also do it are you willing? Why should others actions impact yours?
    You obviously feel the government would do more good with your money. So do it now


    I don’t have earnings above 600K, but that is where the maximum Federal tax rate kicks in.
    I do send additional tax money to my my municipality to help support voluntary fire and ems services and our public libraries. One can designate where the money will go (as opposed to the Town’s general fund). If our state and the federal government allowed similar designated tax contributions I might send them money as well, But as long as Trump thinks he can spend on a wall without Congressional authorization I’ll not send an extra cent.



    I think that its a really nice of you to give a greater portion of your money than is asked of you.

    I am just wondering how something like this can be done. Do they just accept the additional tax/donation and not send you a return check for the overpayment?


    Fair point
    But realize that for many of us we view the entire tax system as going places we don’t support.
    Just another reason to be against raising taxes.
    Remember the Jewish religion has taxes
    Many taxes
    You do the math
    מעשר שני
    מעות חיטין
    מתנות לאביונים
    The one constant is that you get to choose who gets your money
    Here the government spends it as you pointed out on many things that are diametrically opposed to my worldview


    I send a separate check in a separate envelope made out to the municipality and state that this is a donation of additional tax dollars and to be used for xxxxxxxx.
    BTW, this money is not deductible under the IRS Code. One may only deduct taxes for which you have a liability.

    There are people who give extra tax dollars to the US Government, but it can only be done to reduce the national debt, not fund items of interest.
    “You can contribute online through a Treasury website ( … Or you can write a check payable to the U.S. Treasury’s “Bureau of the Public Debt.” If you prefer to write a check, note in the memo section that your donation represents a “gift to reduce the debt held by the public.”

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    Frankly, once you’re giving it away, the money would be better spent supporting mosdos of Torah and chessed.


    Klugeryid, if you have a problem with what is done with the tax money, why does it matter where the money comes from?


    I don’t fully understand your question
    My point is just an additional reason to be against taking more of my dollars (if I were to be rich)
    True I don’t want them to take any but it’s not my choice

    Fake Yeshiva Bachur

    The average frum jew has a lot more expenses than the average american.

    Ben L

    Ct Lawyer.
    You make the perfect point
    You send extra money to your municipality to specifically support things that you feel worthy of your money.
    However in my Town we have Hatzolah.
    Hatzolah was started specifically because of the response time of the EMS systems.
    I feel that they are need. That they save lives.
    My community also has a large library with books and reading material that I find approproate for my children.
    I would never ever allow them into a Public Library without a really good reason and adult supervision.
    However operating a quality library takes money and as such I pay membership fees and others.
    In addition my local shuls have large seforim libraries, commonly know as a n “otzar seforim” which are needed for my continuing Jewish education.
    TOgether these 3 things are just part of an infrastructure that I consider to be essential to raising a proper Jewish family.
    I do not need nor care for the local Public Library.
    Admittidley it serves a limited purpose but it’s limited purpose is demonstrably smaller then the purpose of the Jewish Libraries.
    The same goes for EMS.
    Now while B’H i make a nice living it is not nearly enough on it’s own to fund any of these expensive and time consuming endeavors (you would be surprised as to how much time and money it takes to fund a good library)
    Thankfully my wider community also thinks of these things as necessities.
    As such there is enough money contributed to fund all 3 of them .
    That is our communal choice and it is the voluntary choice of the community to fund these things which to us are priorities.
    However I suspect that most of the decision makers in the State and Federal government do not view these things as priorities..
    As such they will raise taxes to fund what they consider to be “arts”.
    In other words they legally take away money we earned to support our families and communities.
    To fund what they consider “arts”.

    Ben L

    In addition to the questionable morality of this ,it actually raises Anti-Semitism.
    Take many towns and cities with large Jewish populations.
    Taxes are levied to pay for Public Schools.
    However the Public Schools are ran in such a way that it is impossible for me to send my child there.
    However the taxes levied are so high that there is simply not enough money left over for us to fund schools for our children.
    As such we are left to fight for any scrap we can get.
    i.e we pay taxes then fight to get money to bus our children to school.
    Yet non-jewish residents are left complaining about how much money Jews are taking back.
    All we want is to the ability to raise our orthodox jewish children in orthodox jewish schools.
    Confiscatory tax rates make that impossible to do without fighting for some (not even half ) of the money we work so hard to earn in order to be able to do that back!

    Ben L

    What it comes down to is pretty simple.
    Liberal Democrats are very priority driven.
    They have tons of priorities.
    However for some reason those heart felt convictions are not enough to get the to raise the money to support there own convictions.
    So they need to force me to pay for what they feel is important.

    Avi K

    1. You wrote that you would be willing to pay higher taxes. That means that you are willing for others to pay. do not be disingenuous.
    2. How about eliminating things that are better done by private industry.? Getting rid of the dictatorial administrative state (of dubious constitutionality)? On the Federal level, how about getting rid of everything the Tenth Amendment gives to the states and the people?
    3. How does this trust fund even stay afloat if rents are not raised in accordance with costs? You stated that it is in its fifth generation. Just two generations ago my parents z”l paid $75 per month for a three bedroom apartment in NYC. If you can turn a profit for a landlord with that level of rents you are over on sorcery.


    Avi K,

    While I completely disagree with CTL and with his normative claims which for some reason he is of the opinion that we should be subject to his normative claims and morals.

    He has been pretty respectful with his arguments and deserves to receive the same treatment.

    This is just a coffee room discussion, getting emotionally invested in these discussions that have no real life implications does not make any sense.


    Wow 2scents
    This was emotionally invested?????

    Avi K

    2scents, how have I been emotional and/or disrespectful? I was merely answering his contentions. I will take this opportunity to correct my post. It was actually a two bedroom apartment.

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “If I I work and earn money then how and by what right does it belong to you?”
    Not a dime of it belongs to me.

    Now, please be so kind as to find a quote where I ever claimed it did.

    The fact that you libertarian snowflakes can’t make an argument without pretending we said stuff that we never said just proves how wrong and weak you are. To your credit, it’s bad arguments like the ones you guys are making that made me ultimately realize that I was wrong to ever be somewhat on that side of the fence.

    Ben Levi

    You stated that the difference between “tax cuts” and “bailout” are simply semantics.
    The only way you can make such an extraordinary statement is if you believe in the premise that money I earn is not mine.
    If you would actually believe that the money I earn is mine then there is no room for such a statement.


    Welcome back, Ben Levi! We missed you for a couple of years until you joined this thread.


    The more you have the more you need to give. Maaser is 10 percent


    Neville cb
    a bailout is directly giving me someone elses money that i never earned (ill take it if offered)
    its not semantics any more than saying stealing your money is the same as you spending it in my store
    either way i end up with it and you dont have it anymore
    every thing else is just semantics? right?

    I think the above is a seasoned rational arguments among the others I have made in this thread
    The only one who has come close to responding is ctlawyer
    You have not answered a single point
    It’s pretty lame to shift and pick a single line in someone’s post, claim ignorance of its meaning (especially for one who feels semantics are not important) and then use that as a basis for supposedly disproving a line of thought.

    It would seem more likely that when you were younger you were more into being intellectually honest and as you moved in society you gradually blended into the feel good don’t think type of crowd

    Ben Levi

    Actually 10% at it’s face is a flat tax.
    If you delve deeper into it then yes it becomes progressive as Chazal strongly recommend the wealthier give more.
    However there are two really crucial differences between “masser” & other comunnal tzedakah obligations & taxes.
    a) Masser & Tzedakah are based upon our belief in that our money comes from HKBH and he who gave it to us demands we help his other children.As the one who creates us and gives us any money we have we certainly have the obligation to follow his wishes.
    However the secularists are actually militantly against this basic principle and extremely vocal about separation of church & state. So if so what gives them the right to appropriate my money to fund their priorities?
    b) Virtually all tzedakah obligation are obligations on how much one has to give but it does not create a middle man to do the giving it says “Shimon must give 10%, and he should decide who to give it to”.
    In fact since charitable giving is a fundamental part of Judaism there is a section of Shulchan Aruch in Yoreh Deah called “Hilchos Tzedakah”, where halacha quite clearly states it is preferable to give tzedakah personally and one should only give to a “communal fund” if they are certain those who run are trustworthy, reliable, and will not waist that money you give them.
    Sounds like the Federal Government does it not?

    Ben Levi

    “I don’t support school vouchers, I do support increased funding for libraries and schools, if this requires increased taxes, the increase is not the reason for my vote”

    This requires increased taxation.

    There is no way for the government to get money other then by forcibly taking from others.
    So if you want them “increase funding” for schools then you want them to collect more taxes i.e raise taxes.
    To say otherwise is the height of intellectual dishonesty.

    Unless you are simply stating your willingness to pay for it all yourself, in that case. I don’t really care where or on what you wish to spend your money.

    BTW I am also for increased funding for schools.
    I think the Rabbaim & Morah’s who teach my children and my siblings and communities children should be paid more so they have an easier life and can teach with a clear head.

    Since the government will not contribute money towards religious teachers salaries the only way that can happen is if I pay money in tuition.

    However when the government increases taxes in order to have increased funding for public schools, that my children cannot attend, they are in a sense confiscating my money to pay for the education of other peoples children while by default decreasing funding for my childrens schools because I cannot afford to pay more tuition (unless i want to risk Jail time for tax fraud).


    @Ben Levi
    Supporting increased funding for schools, libraries and EMS services in my town does NOT have to mean supporting a tax increase.
    It may call for reallocation of town spending.
    I don’t feel the need for our town to own and operate 2 golf courses. Sell or lease them to private operators and use the money to benefit more citizens.
    Not every department head should get a town car for 24/7 use. Drive to the office in your own car and use a town owned vehicle from the municipal fleet when you have to leave your office for official business.

    Last year I was on the Senior Citizens commission, The senior center request funding to add 2 more mini buses for free senior transportation to doctors, shopping, cultural events, etc. It would have cost about 400K per year. We investigated and found we senior center could provide on call service for senior center members using Uber and a town account. Scheduling of rides requested by seniors calling a clerk at the senior center who already was booking existing vans. Cost less than 200K per year.

    For too long government look at budgets and said this is what we want to spend and we’ll raise taxes to gain the revenue. Out town now looks at revenue and decides how best to spend it.

    It’s all about spending smarter, not more. One needs to apply a business head to government, not civil service mentality

    ☕ DaasYochid ☕

    It’s all about spending smarter, not more. One needs to apply a business head to government, not civil service mentality

    Excellent point, but increasing funding for schools and libraries still means higher taxes. The money saved from stopping wasteful spending should rightfully go back to the taxpayers whose money was being wasted, instead you want to keep it for government.


    CT lawyer
    Additionally maybe in your small town you were able to do that.
    In big cities that will never happen
    Perks are never removed


    Using saved tax dollars for other projects does not mean higher taxes, it doesn’t change the amount of tax paid, but reallocates expenditures.
    Contrary to your opinion, I don’t want to keep it for the government, I want to spend it for the benefit of the populace.

    I am the first to admit that small town government and operations is quite different than big city ways. Maybe that’s why I like living here. Last year the kids’ plays-cape at one of our parks needed replacing. The bids came in at over 100K which was not in the Parks and Rec budget. So the local service organizations got together and made a proposal to the town. Buy the material and the citizens will do all the construction and landscaping at no cost to the town. In fact, Home Depot stepped up and donated the materials and in two weeks the project was complete. This wouldn’t work in NYC. The municipal unions would be apoplectic if free labor was used.

    I’ve talked about supporting our EMS. We have a great one, mostly volunteer, as is our Fire service. Mrs. CTL has needed EMS as recently as last month. They arrived in less than 2 minutes. Because they were told the patient was a female they sent a female crew and paramedic. I may be in the vast minority being observant and Jewish in this town, but the community respects everyone’s values. Small town living is not for everyone, but it works for us. We are close enough to the big city when we want what it offers, but avoid the hassles and expense of living in the concrete jungle.

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    “You have not answered a single point”
    That’s because you have not MADE a single point other than that you like to whine about taxes.

    None of you have outright admitted that you consider the progressive tax code that we have under Trump unfair, so what are we supposed to be arguing on? Trump’s tax code charges the rich a higher rate. If you think that’s fair, then you agree with me; so, why are you people getting so worked up? You just don’t like to hear people explicitly admit that they support a progress tax plan, even though you also do?

    I don’t support handouts, you don’t support handouts. I don’t support flat taxes, you don’t support flat taxes. As far as I can tell, there is only one minor area where we differ. You guys would oppose bailouts for the wealthy, but would support tax cuts for the wealthy via your belief in Keynesian Economics. I would oppose both, unless they were tax cuts across the board backed up by spending cuts.

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