President Donald Trump has been promising his base substantial tax reform. If you're skeptical that anything Trump plans will actually benefit the low-income population, or even the middle class, that makes sense. His previous healthcare bill was seemingly designed with an interest for keeping money in the top, as opposed to helping lower income constituents.
But there's another reason to doubt that Trump's administration will suddenly present us with an incredible new tax system: He doesn't know what the heck he's talking about. Shocking!
On Wednesday, Trump headed to North Dakota to hold meetings on his plans, and tweeted one of his new favorite misinformation pieces. He claims the United States is "the highest taxed nation in the world."
As Vox reports, Trump has referred in the past to the U.S. 35 percent statutory corporate tax rate, which technically is the highest on paper. But the reality is that all corporations use loopholes to drastically reduce that rate. Hunter Blair, a tax and budget analyst at the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute, told Vox's reporter that in some cases the reduction is so drastic, it's almost negligible.
“It’s a bit misleading because our corporate tax code is riddled with loopholes and what corporations pay is far, far lower — somewhere between 13 and 21 percent,” said Blair. “When you get down to specific companies, sometimes they pay 3, 4, 5 percent."
And when it comes to taxes on individuals, Trump's claim falls apart even further, as can be seen in this GIF shared by Washington economist Michael Linden:
Which is based on all of our many tax categories grouped together, since most countries don't have states:
Which is, of course, being contested in the replies, as some individuals fall into high tax brackets. But again, because of loopholes, the vast majority of people pay far, far less than the ceiling of what they could:
According to the World Atlas, the United is actually the 16th highest taxed country when it comes to individuals, with an average income tax rate of 26%.
And though we all hate taxes, the reality is that most highly industrialized countries with tax codes to match are some of the best places in the world to live, because they provide actual services to people:
Which makes them much happier!
Healthcare and a safety net aren't cheap, because they're pretty priceless.