You pay how much?

When I first glanced at the headline of this Chron op-ed piece, which reads “Why should hospital district cover illegals?”, I figured it would be the standard-issue ignorant nativist rant, and I started to prepare some responses as I read through it. About midway through, I realized there was no point in arguing with it, because it was such a poorly written muddle that I had no idea what author Eric Yollick was actually talking about.

Then I got to this paragraph, which stopped me dead in my tracks:

The real beneficiaries of illegal immigration are the businesses that employ them illegally. You and I pay approximately 72 percent of our disposable income to taxes — local, state and federal — in many different forms — income, ad valorem, sales and use. Illegal immigrants do not pay nearly those amounts. Employers get the benefit of these employees. Why, then, should they not bear the burden instead of spreading that burden across all taxpayers, rich and poor alike (which is what we do through the ad valorem taxes that MCHD assesses)?

Emphasis mine. Seventy-two percent? Of disposable income, which to my mind means the money you have after you pay for the things you have to pay for? Jumping Jehosaphat, what planet do you live on? Even the guy who draws “Mallard Fillmore” only claimed he was paying “more than 50%” of his income in taxes.

I’ve seen statistics pulled out of the air before, but this one takes the cake. Eric Yollick, if you’re reading this, I officially triple-dog dare you to document that 72% figure. Feel free to drop me a note or leave me a comment. In return, I’ll recommend a few good accountants for you so you can bring that burden down a tad. It’s the least I can do for you.

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3 Responses to You pay how much?

  1. retrogrouch says:

    Yee Ha! Someone is lying their ass off!

    If the guy lives in Texas, his total tax burden including federal, state and local taxes is about 1/3 of his income.

    You can see the documentation of that statistic here: More Goper Lies: The Holocaust of Taxation

    Also, he clearly does not understand the definition of disposable income. By definition, that’s the amount you have left after taxes are taken out.

    Maybe that’s the source of the lie… if you take a tax burden of 1/3 of your income, and take that as a percentage of your diposable income, you could say that taxes run at 50% of disposable income. That kind of dishonesty is worthy of Grover Norquist.

  2. Angry Bear says:

    More amusting still, in Economics, “Disposable Income” means after-tax income (after income taxes, that is.) So the laughable sentence translates to “…pay approximately 72 percent of our after tax income to taxes…”

  3. Jim Becka says:

    Who is Grover Norquest?

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