Last word on taxes/spending for today, I promise.
One reason for the perception of regressive taxation is the fact that a lot of people pay more in payroll taxes than they do in income taxes. I've worked jobs towards the bottom end of the ladder, and all you have to do to is read your pay stub and look at the deductions. You know you can get a refund on the federal income taxes, but the payroll stuff is all gone.
So when politicians talk about cutting income taxes, this really means nothing to you, at least not directly. And when you see that the tax cuts are aimed at people making more money, without any real immediate benefit for people in the low-end jobs, you can't escape the feeling that the whole tax system works this way, as opposed to just the distribution of the latest round of cuts. Changing the tax system to make it less progressive leads to the misperception that it's not progressive at all.
So what's the solution to this P.R. problem? I'm not sure there really is one.
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