So Mr. Buffet, you say you should pay more taxes. I agree.
Sadly, our Solons and sages in DC think not. They believe more taxes is wrong, forever and ever. Amen. (This principle amounts to a theology, you see)
But I have an idea. As a sensible Midwestern fellow (with gobs of money) you are the best person to share this with. And the best part is that its easy.
Send in more money.
When you write that year end check to the Lords of Misrule (the IRS, get it. Congress is better described as a Confederacy of Dunces) add in what they would not. As I recall, it was 4%. I have no idea what your income was, but I am guessing it was above $250,000, so just figure another 4% and send it along with whatever you owe at the lower 35%
Write a separate check, and put a little note on the memo line about where it should go. If you don't they will think it's an overpayment or a prepayment for 2012. So make sure you write a separate check.
But that's only the first step. Tell your fellow rich friends. Start with Bill Gates - he knows you and owes you - and round up your fellow tycoons to pledge to send in the extra money. Get a few hundred lined up, enough to make a really big dent in the $60 billion that would have been collected if Congress had actual courage.
Now buy a full page ad in every daily paper in the US (they could use the ad revenue anyway) and say something like this:
"We are asking our fellow rich Americans to join us in doing for the country what our elected leaders would not do. Send in 4% more than you owe in taxes. Perhaps Congress feared us or wanted to please us, but we think the money can do more good for the country than it can do for us. After all, we have all the houses, cars, boats, and power we need or should have. But $60 billion could -
- triple federal funding for medical research.
- provide Universal preschool for 3- and 4-year-olds, with relatively small class sizes.
- fund much larger troop surge in Afghanistan, raising spending by 60 percent from current levels.
- create a national infrastructure program to repair and upgrade roads, bridges, mass transit, water systems and levees.
- allow a 15 percent cut in corporate taxes.
- provide twice as much money for clean-energy research as suggested by a recent bipartisan plan.
- provide free college, including room and board, for about half of all full-time students, at both four- and two-year colleges.
create a $500 tax cut for all households.
(from the NYTimes, "Week In Review," December 5, 2010)
Publish the names of those who have promised to do this, AND the names of all the others you know you could.
And run this ad every day until people know you and Gates friends will not stop until you reach $60 billion. Add in new folks, like signing a petition, but this one everybody can see every day as it grows. Let America know which ultrarich think they need and deserve their wealth.
Call them out. You have enormous power, but not over Congress. Your power is over friends and fellow rich folks. Use it.