Warren Buffett consistently advocates for higher taxes. Recently, he called for higher taxes on people making $250k+/year.
Is Warrent Buffett a swell guy? Is it enlightened self-interest?
This post had an interesting quote.
"Warren Buffet is a dirtbag who has made millions buying small businesses that are forced to sell in order to raise money to pay estate taxes."Suppose you built a successful small business worth $50M-$100M. When you die, you're hit with an estate tax bill of $20M+. You probably don't have $20M cash to pay the estate tax bill. You are forced to sell your business, due to taxes.
Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway specialize in buying small family-owned businesses. Many of the businesses are forced to sell due to estate taxes.
Warren Buffett likes the estate tax. The estate tax enables him to buy businesses at fire-sale prices. It's a forced sale due to the estate tax.
In effect, the State stole the small business. The State gets a fat tax check. Warren Buffett gets control of the business. In effect, the State seized the family-owned business and gave it to Warren Buffett.
Warren Buffett is a bankster. As a large insurance corporation, he gets to borrow for close to the Fed Funds Rate, although Berkshire Hathaway is not a Federal Reserve Primary Dealer. Insurance contracts have an implied interest rate, with the Fed Funds Rate or Treasury Rate as the benchmark.
In effect, Warren Buffett buys family-owned business with newly-printed money. A bank prints new money, borrowing from the Federal Reserve. That money is lent cheaply to Warren Buffett. He uses that money to buy the business. That money pays the estate tax bill, with a little left over.
The family does get some cash after the estate tax bill is paid. However, they lost their business. The family doesn't get the cashflow and profits from operating the business for another generation. In many cases, the family members who know how the business works become Berkshire Hathaway employees. In fact, Warren Buffett openly brags about how he treats family members well, after the State forces them to sell their business to him.
Insiders use trust and tricks to avoid taxes. Consider Comcast. Even though it is a public corporation, Brian Roberts owns special supervoting shares that give him control, even though he only owns a tiny slice of equity. Brian Roberts inherited those supervoting shares from his father, Ralph Roberts, using trusts and tricks to dodge estate taxes.
Estate taxes do not hurt true insiders like Brian Roberts. Estate taxes hurt small business owners who want to pass a business on to their children. Income taxes and estate taxes do not hurt insiders, who already control a State monopoly. Taxes hurt someone who's trying to bootstrap a small business.
It makes no difference, if Brian Roberts' taxes are raised. If his taxes are raised $20M, then he can just pay himself $20M more in salary from running the Comcast monopoly/oligopoly.
Comcast has an explicit State-backed monopoly. It's illegal for me to compete with Comcast. It's illegal for me to lay down wires and start my own cable/Internet/telephone business, even if I could recruit customers and raise capital.
I'm trying to bootstrap a profitable Internet-based business. Right now, I'm blogging and planning to expand. Part of the taxes I pay subsidize large media corporations that compete with me.
The tax system acts as a barrier to non-insiders, as they accumulate wealth. You might make millions of dollars, but you probably won't become a true insider like Brian Roberts.
The income tax hurts someone bootstrapping a successful business. If you raise tax rates, that hurts the successful small businessman making $200k-$500k/year. He has to pay a higher tax bill, reducing his ability to reinvest in his business. That money/wealth is stolen by the State, and used to subsidize insider-controlled businesses.
True insiders use trusts and tricks to dodge taxes. Why is Warren Buffet using a charitable trust to dodge taxes? Why doesn't he pay estate tax on the full value of his inheritance, just like the families whose business he steals?
Warren Buffet is actually a negative taxpayer, just like most insiders. The actual taxes he pays are less than the value of the State subsidies he receives. As a bankster, Warren Buffet benefits from artificially-low interest rates. Warren Buffet invests in corporations with a State-backed monopoly, making profits practically guaranteed. For example, Warren Buffett's recent investment in Bank of America is backed by the State financial system money laundering scam, and the fact that Bank of America is "too big to fail".
Taxes don't hurt true insiders. They receive State perks worth more than any taxes they pay. Insiders are negative taxpayers. Instead of raising taxes, State subsidies for insiders should be eliminated. If you receive $100M in State subsidies, it makes no difference if you pay back $40M or $60M in taxes. If your taxes are raised $20M, then you'll just take an extra $30M in State subsidies. For true insiders, the nominal taxation rate is irrelevant, because they're negative taxpayers. The people hurt most by higher taxes are people bootstrapping a successful business.
Higher taxes hurt people who have a successful business, but can't afford their own Congressman.
That's why I like agorism. Agorism enables you to bootstrap a small business without being robbed by the State. Any taxes you pay subsidize your larger corporate competitors.
This point is missed in the "raise taxes" debate. True insiders are negative taxpayers. Their nominal taxation rate is irrelevant. Taxes hurt non-insiders who want to bootstrap a business, or pass it on to their children.
The important point is not to tax insiders more. True reform would remove their State-granted perks. The taxation debate is a smokescreen. It hides the fact that true insiders are negative taxpayers. Insiders like Warren Buffett receive State subsidies worth more than any taxes they pay.
Insiders profit twice from the tax system. First, they use taxes to line their pockets. Second, they use taxes to prevent others from accumulating wealth and influence and challenging them. Nominal taxation rates are irrelevant, because true insiders are negative taxpayers.