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Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Warren Buffett Agree: Paying Taxes Is for Poor People

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When Joe Biden unveiled his $1.8 trillion American Families Plan in April, one of the ways he proposed paying for it was by boosting the Internal Revenue Service’s budget by $80 billion, which the White House estimates will raise $700 billion over a 10-year period by recovering taxes from people who‘ve wriggled out of paying Uncle Sam. Which, what with tax cheats being bad and the funding of things like child care being good, sounds like a worthwhile initiative. Another valuable exercise? Considering if it’s fair that billionaires like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, George Soros, and Michael Bloomberg—most of whom make more money during an episode of the Bachelor than most people make in a lifetime, and whose net worth dwarfs the GDP of dozens of small countries—frequently, and fully legally, pay nothing in federal income taxes. As in zero dollars and zero cents. As in, take the amount of money they make in a year and subtract nothing from it because that’s how much they sent the government. As in, if you’re a person who actually works for a living, you probably pay a higher tax rate than the guy with the $175 million house and his own rocket ship company.

Thanks to a trove of data obtained by ProPublica, we know that Bezos paid nothing in federal income taxes in 2007 and 2011, while Musk paid nada in 2018. Bloomberg has been similarly lucky, as has Soros, who managed to pay no federal income tax three years in a row. Nonagenarian billionaire Warren Buffett, currently clocking in as the fifth-richest person in the United States (and the sixth in the world) paid very, very little and, honestly, what he did pay was basically a rounding error.

While the Biden administration is currently proposing an increase in the tax rates on people making over $400,000 and raising the top income tax rate from 37% to 39.6%, ProPublica reports that such changes would have basically no impact whatsoever on the 25 wealthiest Americans, many of whom add $400,000 to their wealth in the time it takes a working slob to load H&R Block on their phone. That’s because, among other things, the money the richest people in America make every year—largely in stock and property—isn‘t classified as income unless the assets are sold, which they almost never are. Comparing the IRS data it obtained with the publicly reported wealth of the individuals in question, ProPublica calculated what it calls people’s “true tax rate,” and even if you are already vaguely aware that the rich are different than everyone else, the results are quite to fairly maddening:

According to Forbes, [the 25 richest people in the U.S.] saw their worth rise a collective $401 billion from 2014 to 2018. They paid a total of $13.6 billion in federal income taxes in those five years, the IRS data shows. That’s a staggering sum, but it amounts to a true tax rate of only 3.4%.

No one among the 25 wealthiest avoided as much tax as Buffett, the grandfatherly centibillionaire. That’s perhaps surprising, given his public stance as an advocate of higher taxes for the rich. According to Forbes, his riches rose $24.3 billion between 2014 and 2018. Over those years, the data shows, Buffett reported paying $23.7 million in taxes. That works out to a true tax rate of 0.1%, or less than 10 cents for every $100 he added to his wealth.

During the same period, ProPublica found that middle-class wage earners in their early 40s expanded their net worth by roughly $65,000, mostly due to the rise in value of their homes, while paying almost $62,000 in taxes. Meanwhile, between 2014 and 2018, ProPublica’s analysis shows that Bezos, the richest man in the world, paid a true tax rate of 0.98%, Bloomberg paid 1.30%, and Musk paid 3.27%. By the end of 2018, the top 25 richest Americans had a collective net worth of $1.1 trillion, for which they paid $1.9 billion in federal taxes. On the flip side, the roughly 14 million Americans whose net worths combined equal that of the top 25 paid the government $143 billion.

In response to requests for comment from ProPublica, Buffett and Bloomberg said they paid all the taxes they owed. A spokesperson for Soros said in a statement: “Between 2016 and 2018 George Soros lost money on his investments, therefore he did not owe federal income taxes in those years. Mr. Soros has long supported higher taxes for wealthy Americans.”

Representatives for Bezos declined to review detailed questions about the matter. Musk responded to an initial inquiry with a single question mark, and after being sent detailed questions, did not respond. Carl Icahn, a fellow billionaire who also managed to not pay any federal income taxes in two of the years reviewed, told ProPublica: “There’s a reason it’s called income tax. The reason is if, if you’re a poor person, a rich person, if you are Apple—if you have no income, you don’t pay taxes.” He added: “Do you think a rich person should pay taxes no matter what? I don’t think it’s germane. How can you ask me that question?”

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Obama says he didn’t see this* coming

*This being the Republican party happily going along with any and all of Trump’s shameless, democracy-shattering lies like the one about how the election was stolen.

And speaking of 1/6

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Mary-Kate And Ashley Olsen Gave A Rare Interview About Their “Discreet” Lifestyle In Regards To Their Brand

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“We had just moved to New York,” Ashley continued while discussing why they founded the brand. “We were 18 years old and I think what we did know was that we wanted to take that time to take a break from what we were previously doing and to explore things that interested us, and explore what life has to offer…” “Creatively,” Mary-Kate finished her sentence.

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Chrissy Teigen Issues A Public Apology After Her Cyberbullying Scandal Resurfaces  – The Shade Room

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For the past few weeks, a few brands have made the decision to end their business relationship with Chrissy Teigen after some of her previous tweets resurfaced and exposed her cyberbullying past. Chrissy remained silent about the matter, but that ended on Monday when she released a lengthy apology.

As we previously reported, back in May, Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s announced that they would be ending their business relationship with Chrissy after her old tweets about Courtney Stodden from 2011 and 2012 came to light. At the time Courtney was only 16 years old, and Chrissy’s  tweets from that time suggested that she should have killed herself.

Chrissy had taken to Twitter to formally apologize about her past remarks, to which Courtney said she accepted, but also acknowledged that Chrissy didn’t make the effort to apologize until the tweets resurfaced.

On Monday, Chrissy shared a more detailed apology about the whole matter and said, “I’ve apologized publicly to one person, but there are others — and more than just a few — who I need to say I’m sorry to. I’m in the process of privately reaching out to the people I insulted. It’s like my own version of that show My Name is Earl! I understand that they may not want to speak to me. I don’t think I’d like to speak to me. (The real truth in all of this is how much I actually cannot take confrontation.) But if they do, I am here and I will listen to what they have to say, while apologizing through sobs.”

Chrissy continued to say, “I was a troll, full stop. And I am so sorry. I want to go a little further here, thinking of those I’ve hurt and friends I’ve disappointed.”

Read her full statement below:

Back in March, Chrissy made a departure from Twitter, and before deactivating her account she cited so many “2-follower count punches” while on the platform, as one of the reasons for her leaving, as she worked to block out the negativity.

 

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TSR STAFF: Jade Ashley @Jade_Ashley94


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Katie Holmes Rocks Baggy Jeans In 1st Photos Since A-Rod Left Her Apartment Building

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Katie Holmes looked fashionable in oversized jeans while shopping in NYC one day after A-Rod was spotted exiting her apartment building.

Katie Holmes was spotted strolling through NYC one day after Alex Rodriguez was photographed exiting her apartment building on June 13. The 42-year-old Batman Begins star enjoyed some shopping in Soho after meeting with a friend as news broke that the ex of Jennifer Lopez was seen leaving the luxury Manhattan address.

Although Katie lives in the building where A-Rod was seen, it is not clear whether or not he was there to visit the brunette beauty. the reason he was at that location. Snapshots reveal the retired New York Yankees player walking out of the building lobby in a white t-shirt and khaki pants. It is not confirmed why he was in the apartment building.

Katie Holmes looked fashionable in baggy jeans one day after Alex Rodriguez was spotted leaving her apartment building. It’s unknown if he was there to see her at the time. (SplashNews)

The Dawson’s Creek alum went boho chic for her outing in a pair of oversized dark denim, high-waisted jeans with a white tank, and matching sneakers. She swept her brunette locks up in a high bun and stayed hidden beneath dark movie star shades. Katie completed her low-key look with a brown leather handbag and a few dainty necklaces for some added sparkle.

Katie Holmes Baggy Jeans Photos
Alex Rodriguez photographed leaving Katie Holmes’ apartment building. (BrosNYC / BACKGRID)

Katie’s outing comes on the heels of news that things seem to be getting pretty serious between J.Lo and Ben Affleck. For the first time since rekindling their romance in April, Ben and Jen were spotted packing on the PDA in a new paparazzi video — oh, and her twins Max and Emme, 13, were right there, too!

The former exes didn’t shy away from making out during a romantic dinner at Nobu in Malibu on June 13. Jen can even be seen rubbing Ben’s face before leaning in for a kiss. He then nuzzles her neck and whispers something in her ear as she giggles uncontrollably.

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