November 21, 2012

YES, AS IT TURNS OUT: Should People Who Make $250,000 a Year Worry About Obama’s Tax Proposals?

Kevin Drum and Dave Weigel take off after rich people who don’t understand that they only pay marginal tax rates on the extra dollars they earn above taxation thresholds. “This isn’t true, of course. Obama is only proposing to raise tax rates on income over $250,000, so if your income goes up to $251,000, you only pay the higher rate on the extra $1,000. The tax bill on your first $250,000 stays exactly the same.”

Their analysis is basically sound, except for the fact that it is not quite true. They have forgotten to look at deduction phaseouts, surtaxes, and the AMT, which are not taxes on marginal income.*

No matter what you have heard on the internet, there are in fact a lot of sizeable marginal inflection points for high earners.

Read the whole thing.