Shareholder season is upon us, marking the beginning of another round of corporate America's dog-and-pony shows held to placate their cronies and pat each other on the back for another profitable year.
If you want more kids to grow up into responsible, successful adults who contribute to our society, and if you want lower crime rates and prison populations, investing in good public education makes sense.
Republicans argue that our revenue discussion should be over. They'll say that we already agreed to raise tax rates a little bit on the rich, so now we should only be cutting spending. But they ignore that America gives away through the tax code just as much money as it collects.
By using a loophole in the tax code, some individuals have organized their businesses in such a way that their earnings, what you and I would call "wages," can technically be called "profits" and therefore are not subject to Medicare tax.
It's ridiculous that huge corporations or speculators should be able to take advantage of this provision, buying one investment property, flipping it, and then "replacing" it with another, ad infinitum, not paying capital gains taxes on the sales.
If one of the world's most successful investors, Warren Buffett, calls you on the phone and gives you a specific investment tip would you reply that it depended on the taxes that affect the income from the investment?
Raising taxes on the rich, who usually pay a lower rate than everyone else because of the loopholes available to them, is not about redistribution of wealth but about creating a level economic playing field for all Americans.
I am not remotely against the rich: It would be great if many more were rich. But to simplify for the sake of a useful argument, we need to distinguish at least two kinds of rich: the good in-it-together rich and the bad in-it-only-for-themselves rich.
When you boil it down, Proposition 39 is actually easy to understand. The ballot measure would simply close a tax loophole that incentivizes California companies to create jobs elsewhere. Every Californian will benefit from this proposition.