To the People

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or TO THE PEOPLE.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

In Response to Comments, Just How Does the US Tax Burden (and benefits) Compare?

My earlier post on Obama's health care plan decried the fact that the US spends more on healthcare than any other country while charging similar, if not higher, tax rates. My argument was that European countries really aren't taxed that much higher than we are, and sometimes less, and their governments provide national health as part of package while our politicians seek to raise taxes more to accomplish what the Europeans can do with much less while 43 million Americans are uninsured and have no National Health. Ergo, we are getting screwed by major inefficiency. See: FEMA, CPA, etc. A commenter disputed the fact that UK corporations pay lower rates than do US companies, and I know it is hard to believe, but here are the corporate tax rates:

United States= 39.3%
Canada= 36.1%
France- 35%
Italy=33%
Denmark= 28%
Norway=28%
Czech Republic=26%
Finland=26%
Austria=25%
United Kingdom=30%
Sweden=28%
Poland=19%

And the highest-growing country in the EU, Ireland, has the lowest corporate tax rate of 12.5%.

But the US doesn't have a VAT, so aren't we better off, some commenters ask, as we don't have a VAT? Not if you live in DC, where you pay a 9.3% local income tax on top our equivalent of a VAT, which is a sales tax of 10% that applies to all purchases including the horrible "gross receipts" tax, which is applied to all phone and utilities bills. So as gas prices skyrocket, so do one's gross receipts taxes. If you add that all in, and throw property taxes in for good measure, the US taxpayer is not getting what the UK one is relatively. If anyone on TtP can show mathematically that US taxpayers get a better deal than UK taxpayers, including National Health, than I will take you out for a steak dinner with martinis.

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