Originally Posted by Beingist
This is part of the problem I have, but another part is something Smerp mentioned, somewhere between his derisive commentary--
Such a tax would, I think, all but eliminate the middle class investor. As one who once had a single-ladder Air Conditioning company, I was one of those who was basically squeezed out of business by the law that mandated all the refrigerant recycling equipment. That took a significant chunk of capital that I simply didn't have. Such would be the same, I think with this tax. If enacted, the only ones who could continue to compete are the big-money corporations, while the guy doing the day trading is basically screwed. In that light, it seems truly counterproductive.
I know Bill Gates is somewhat of a philanthropist, but otherwise, I honestly think that charitable contributions are really more for the tax deduction than out of actual charity. And the reason I think this, is because if you took away the charitable contribution deduction, do you really expect contributes would be even close to what they are now?
Yeah I definitely don't want to be taxed out of building up my trading business. I think retail trading is way too lucrative for the brokers (and the taxes they pay) for governments to mess with that.
Buffet, Soros and some of the other big guys are quite known for their charitable/philanthropic work. The bank I work in at the moment (one of the major swiss investment banks) does more charitable stuff than any other company I've worked for.
I'm sure they could do more but I'm impressed with how much they do as it is. I know a lot of wealthy people use charitable giving as a way to lower their tax bills, it would be interesting to see if that were to change if it was no longer tax efficient.
I don't think it would because a lot of the wealthy people I know are very active with charity as they feel a sense of responsibility. It's interesting that when the need to make money to survive is removed from someone's life it's not uncommon for them to want to focus on helping others out of a sense of just wanting to.
This is just my personal experience from the financial institutions I've worked in and some of the very rich people I've been lucky enough to rub shoulders with. I know there are plenty of greedy hoarding types as well.