Social Question

mazingerz88's avatar

In your opinion, do you think American couples with no kids are being taxed too much?

Asked by mazingerz88 (28962points) 4 weeks ago from iPhone

Let’s say at a little more than ten percent federal and ten percent state taxes? And what if the couple doesn’t own a home and just renting?

Thank you.

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34 Answers

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
Forever_Free's avatar

I feel we are all being taxed too much. Couple with and without, or single.
I had nearly 50K go to Fed Taxes last year. State is an additional 5.8%
Then add all the gas taxes, food taxes, etc and it is no wonder people have a hard time.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I think all US citizens are taxed too much-especially seniors, but as a childfree double income family, I don’t think it’s excessive or more abusive than other states.

canidmajor's avatar

@mazingerz88 I’m going to need a little more context, please. Why, specifically, ”…couples with no kids?” as opposed to other citizens? Singles with or without kids? Couples with kids?

seawulf575's avatar

I’m with @Forever_Free. We are all taxed too much. I’ve been a big fan of a flat tax at 10% or so. No deductions, no loopholes. All businesses and individuals pay the same. The only catch comes with income from stocks, though that seems a fairly small catch to deal with. The catch is that most stocks are not paying 10% ROI and dividends are certainly not that high. So the income would be less than the tax. But it could be adjusted somehow.

But a flat tax like that with no deductions or loopholes would allow us to shrink the size and weaponization of the IRS. 10% of gross income becomes very easy to figure out. If you want a house, buy a house. If you want kids, have kids. Married, single, it’s all the same.

janbb's avatar

I think we all aren’t taxed enough actually. I’d rather live in Europe where people who make a lot, pay a lot and there is universal heath care and good public transportation. That doesn’t mean I enjoy paying taxes but it’s part of life.

Zaku's avatar

I think the tax rates for people making under $100,000 / year are too high, and the tax rates for people making over $300,000 / year are too low.

JLeslie's avatar

I’m conflicted about whether people should be taxed differently if they have kids or not or if they are married or not for that matter. Another part of taxation we could be critical of is the Social Security percentage paid in for a head of household is not higher, but their spouse will be entitled to half at retirement age in addition to the whole amount the head of household is entitled to even if the spouse never paid in a cent. Ironically, “traditional families” which has been in the news lately, get more tax money paid to them in retirement proportionate to their contributions.

Back to higher taxes for childless people. I think if people have no children then they have more money for themselves, and why should the government get that money? At the same time, we all should help the children in our society. Property tax usually pays for schools, and so in that way we all pay for schools even if we are childless.

Since you say 10% federal tax, that is a pretty low tax bracket, so I am guessing you are thinking of people who don’t earn much. For a married couple to be taxed 10% they would be earning maybe $26—$36K combined, and only $1—$10,000 is taxed, the first $26K is not taxed (I’m rounding numbers). I don’t think any state income tax is as high as 10% is it, but maybe with county or city added it can be?

I think the upper end of earners needs to be taxed more, people making over $500,000. They have too many loopholes.

Not sure what renters have to do with anything? It is difficult to itemize these days, so middle class average couples don’t get a tax break from owning a house. If you have a very expensive mortgage and property tax then you might get a better tax break from owning, but that goes back to people with more money getting more tax breaks.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

My sister would call herself and her husband (D.I.N.K.S)
Double income no kids.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well it’s all based on income.
People with kids and who make a certain amount, get Earned Income Credit.
My kids get thousands and thousands in money back.

Blackberry's avatar

For the first time ever, we actually owe taxes every year because we’re married with no kids and make too much money.

We had to write a check for 2000 while everyone else gets to spend their kids tax money on whatever they want.

janbb's avatar

@Blackberry So you were better off when you weren’t making so much money? ~

Blackwater_Park's avatar

Look at the tax brackets and tell me who is being over-taxed. Clearly, those working enough to just get by are being screwed. 22% is outrageous for people making 44 – 95K. They are left with almost no disposable income. Life gets progressively easier as you move up the line but that third bracket is a tough place to be.
10% $0 – $11,000
12% $11,001 – $44,725
22% $44,726 – $95,375
24% $95,376 – $182,100
32% $182,101 – $231,250
35% $231,251 – $578,125
37% $578,126 And up

Blackberry's avatar

@janbb
Of course….it was the past….

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

The catch is that most stocks are not paying 10% ROI and dividends are certainly not that high. So the income would be less than the tax.

Not arguing with your overall point, but this particular item is incorrect by 10x.

The tax would be 10% of “ROI and dividends”, not 10% of stock price.

mazingerz88's avatar

@canidmajor Sorry for excluding details. A married Uber driver ( from Ghana ) and his wife ( both are US citizens, have no kids yet and filing jointly ) feel left out with no tax deductions….unlike his brother who is also married and have three young kids. The driver supports their parents back home who are citizens of Ghana. He tells me he can’t claim them as dependents. I don’t know.

JLeslie's avatar

@Blackwater_Park Keep in mind that third position is paying nothing on their first $26k (if it is a married couple) and 10% on the $11k after that, and 12% $11,001 to $44,725, and then the portion above that at 22%. So, they aren’t paying 22% on their income, but more like 15% maybe? I haven’t done the math.

What sucks is a lot of top earners, the super-wealthy who make over $100 million a year, probably pay around 22%. The tables are available online, the IRS reports it. I can search for it. I posted them on a fluther answer years ago.

There was a Forbes article years ago that the top 400 earners in the country paid 17%. Mitt Romney famously paid 13%.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

@JLeslie has the greatest answer above, her first paragraph explains how the tax brackets work. Extremely important and widely misunderstood.

Blackberry's avatar

@janbb you are aware 2800 dollar rent wasn’t the standard, then, correct?

MrGrimm888's avatar

The system clearly provides incentives, for people to have children they can’t afford, and get married, so they can be a good citizen.

JLeslie's avatar

Here’s a report for 2021 that I think the jellies here will find interesting:
https://taxfoundation.org/data/all/federal/latest-federal-income-tax-data-2024/

I couldn’t find the report on the IRS website. Not using the correct search words. My guess is 2021 is the most recent data available since the article I linked is very recent and uses that data.

JLeslie's avatar

Oh wait, I think I found the tables. See this: https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-soi/21in11si.xls

I found the table above from this main page: https://www.irs.gov/statistics/soi-tax-stats-individual-statistical-tables-by-size-of-adjusted-gross-income#_grp1

But the article in my answer just above this answer reads easier if you prefer that to a table full of data.

seawulf575's avatar

@Call_Me_Jay And there we have it. Solutions already appearing. Setting me straight was easy, wasn’t it?

JLeslie's avatar

I always recommend to people to actually look at their gross income and how much they actually paid to the IRS and do the math yourself and see what percentage of your gross you actually paid rather than just listening to numbers thrown around like we are taxed at 50%. That equation would be as follows. If you made $75,000 and paid $12,000, you do 12,000 divided by $75,000, which equals .16 or 16%. You can check your math by doing $75,000 X 16% and make sure it makes sense.

Although, if you have high state and county tax and if you want to add in sales tax and other taxes like property taxes then that is something else, but I am just talking about federal income tax.

You could also look at your adjusted gross income and how much you paid, and find out that percentage too. For instance, if you are in the 22% bracket you could see what you actually paid since the first part of your earnings is taxed lower.

seawulf575's avatar

@JLeslie The problem with taxes is that there are so many and they are spread over all sorts of different titles. Yes, you have federal taxes and state taxes. But you also have taxes for Social Security, Medicare, (FICA tax) that are taxes, just called something different. So yeah, you can look at what you get for gross income and what you get for net income. When I was working it was something like 35% of my gross income disappeared before I saw any of it.

And in the end, I think that most people get fed up with taxes not because they don’t want to support various services, but rather because our elected leaders have shown no fiscal responsibility. They spend money like crazy and then say they need more to pay for the programs that people actually need (not the pork).

Smashley's avatar

No, only I am.

seawulf575's avatar

I find it interesting. I remember when the Dems started calling for “tax the rich!”. The question was raised at that time as to what the definition of “rich” was. They started talking about millionaires or people that made more than $1M/yr. Since then I have seen it drop to $500k and now I’m seeing people say $300k. The problem with “tax the rich!” is that the definition can be changed easier than the tax code. As the economy tanks, suddenly someone making $300k/yr could be equivalent to someone today making $100—$150k as far as buying power and lifestyle goes.

The other problem with “Tax the rich!” is that it takes away incentive for doing good and being successful.

JLeslie's avatar

@seawulf575 Of course rich can be defined many different ways. I haven’t noticed Democrats moving it from $1million and then downward as you described. I’m a Democrat and for the last 15 years or so $450k and higher was the number I’ve heard. For a good 35 years the number I used for upper middle class was $250k. Whatever you call each income bracket, the point is how much does life cost to live and how much money does the government really need.

There is some wasteful spending, but also large countries need government to keep the population safe, healthy, and happy, you can’t just look at one side of the equation.

SnipSnip's avatar

No. This (taxation) is part of how government can encourage stability….......strong marriages with children bring stability. https://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/marriage/upload/USCCB-FLWY-How-Does-Society-Benefit-From-Strong-Marriages.pdf

Tropical_Willie's avatar

@seawulf575 you belief in “trickle down economics” shows how little you know about economics! It just increases poverty and economic distance between the RICH and the poor.

I rub shoulders at a club in town with people that are making more than a million a year. After Trump and the GOP congress reduced taxes, he bought his four vacation house . . . . yes, the real estate agent got a commission . . . yes, the contractor that the remodeled the kitchen got paid . . .BUT the society as a whole received little !

MrGrimm888's avatar

“Trickle down economics,” always reminds me more of “shit rolls downhill.”

And that’s how it’s always been.

It’s more like “leaking economics.” Because the wealthy stay wealthy, because the system is set up for them to keep getting more wealthy.
And THAT is what the wealthy want, more wealth, more power.
It’s NEVER enough.
The rich only spend their money, when there’s no other choice.
Even then, the “Trickle,” is no more than scraps that the poor have to go out of their way to fight over.

To quote Rage Against the Machine; ” give the money to the ‘have nots,’ and let them take a shot.”

SQUEEKY2's avatar

The original theory behind trickle down economics did at one time work a bit , would invest the wealth in their companies thus expanding hiring more working slobs, to pay all the tax bills, but today they have found really good plumbers and have stopped the trickle it pretty much just stays at the top and the lower classes get nothing.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Trickle Down foolishly presumes the wealthy will share the wealth, or at least spend it.
Most really important things, they don’t have to actually buy. The wealthy have absolutely a free pass, once they can claim something as a business expenditure.
Free vehicles, dinners, anything that loosely fits through countless loopholes is deductible.

I’ve noted before, that my uncle is what I consider rich. Not wealthy, compared to the super-billionaires.
He owns a small factory, that makes some rare piece used in machinery.
He gets several brand new loaner vehicles each year, that he uses really just for his family.
Whenever I have visited him, or ate somewhere with him, he paid. He would jokingly tell everyone at the table to say “corporate,” be a he used cards that were first “business.”
I love the guy, and it is what it is.
But I can’t imagine how quickly I would get rich, if I didn’t have to pay for transportation (yes, the fuel was deductible too,) nice dinners, fancy outings, all while making great profit.

Meanwhile. People are barely living, paying bills, eating, having medical care, and just plain struggling.

Trump is the latest/biggest contribution to the wealthy, with his tax cuts for the wealthy.
Even though it helped raise the national debt $8.4TRILLION!
(To be fair, stats I saw claim 3.6 of that was from a bipartisan covid relief package.)
But he gave $1.9 trillion to mostly the wealthy.
Most wealthy people actually got more wealthy during the pandemic.

What Trump did is unforgivable, but he has plenty of company in DC that is just as accountable for the distribution of wealth.

So.
According to the AHAR (Anual Homeless Assessment Report);
Roughly 653,100 people in America “experienced homelessness,” on a single night in 2023.

Some of those people, are “working poor,” with 2–3 jobs.
The fact that SO many Americans have nowhere to live, and some people (like McCain when he was running, ) don’t even know how many houses they own…

I have to say, I always thought I dodged a bullet, by not getting married, and/or having no child support.
But. The government has penalized me, for that.

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