Dave's Denial

From: Jeff Bone (jbone@jump.net)
Date: Fri Mar 23 2001 - 09:54:01 PST

Okay, so I'm stuck on Dave's 1% number. It's a real head-scratcher. Dave claims:

> We might be talking about only a 1% overall tax, yet still
> question whether it should be applied in a
> regressive, flat, or progressive manner*.

Could Dave have have been talking about the tax burden on individuals relative to
GDP? Does that metric mean anything at all? Certainly not in the context of our
discussion. At any rate, it's IOTTMCO that Dave *cannot* be talking about
individual income tax here, and our discussion of progressive / flat / regressive
was pretty much confined to income taxes. So as well as being wrong, it's
misdirection, apples and oranges and all that. Still, I thought, Dave appears to
be claiming that the *overall* tax burden on our economy is about 1% relative to
something... what could that be? GDP?

For FY1999, the federal gov't's actual total revenues per [1] were $1,827B. The
GDP for approximately the same period per [2] was $9,299.2B. That means that the
fed's revenues --- i.e., taxes, in some form or another --- relative to the GDP in
~1999 were 19.6%. And that's *just the fed* --- add on all the various state and
local taxes, and you have a truly *terrifying* number, a number which talks about
how much of the total economic utility of our nation that is *consumed* annually by
various gov't programs.

Dave, Dave...

For the terminally curious, I also found the following links [3]-[16] fascinating.
Knock yourselves out.


[1] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy2001/pdf/budget.pdf
[2] http://www.bea.doc.gov/bea/ARTICLES/NATIONAL/NIPA/2000/0800gdp.pdf
[3] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy2001/maindown.html
[4] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/
[5] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy1999/maindown.html
[6] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy1999/guide/guide.html
[7] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy1999/guide/guidect.html
[8] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy1999/guide/guide04.html#C42
[9] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy1999/guide/guide05.html
[10] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy2001/pdf/hist.pdf
[11] http://w3.access.gpo.gov/usbudget/fy2002/pdf/economic.pdf
[12] http://www.cbpp.org/pubs/fedbud.htm
[13] http://www.cbpp.org/
[14] http://www.bea.doc.gov/bea/dn/st-tabs.htm
[15] http://www.bea.doc.gov/bea/dn1.htm
[16] http://www.bea.doc.gov/bea/dn2.htm

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