• Mitt Romney's 47 Percent.

    There are two kinds of republicans...millionaires and suckers. -Redeye
    It never fails to amaze me how Republicans on the lower end of the economic scale can consistently vote against their own interests. These are the people who need things like universal healthcare, Social Security, favorable economic reform and other societal safety nets. However, they're always quick to vote for people dedicated solely to the cause of garroting these programs, with the intention of picking the resultant bodies clean of any valuables, just because.

    Whether it's the specter of "socialism," fear of federal government or the distaste/hatred of the eponymous "lazy" negro or Latino, conservatives are always willing to join forces with their moneyed, empowered representatives on Capitol Hill to help dismantle these and other programs that don't represent a hard-assed ideology that leaves countless Americans out in the cold, with no one to turn to. Republicans on the wrong side of the $250,000 income bracket are the literal suckers and soft touches of the GOP universe.

    Once again, I bring you this footage of Mitt Romney confiding in his well-moneyed supporters what he thinks about 47 percent of Americans:

    The takeaway from all of this is that 47 percent of Americans don't pay income taxes. Therefore, this percentage can be assumed to be freeloaders and welfare cases who want endless entitlements and represent a lockstep vote for President Obama as a result.

    Of the 47 percent who were spared federal income taxes, over two-thirds were still on the hook for payroll taxes, most of which go towards Social Security and Medicare. Only 18 percent of that 47 percent figure managed to avoid federal income taxes, according to data from the Tax Policy Center.

    Most of the people who avoid federal income taxes are hardworking heads of household relying on low-wage jobs to take care of one or more offspring. Being the head of household is one major deduction on tax returns and having dependents in the form of children or disabled adult relatives are also major deductions, and for good reason. Factor in various credits and adjustments, and you wind up getting the majority of your payroll taxes back in the form of a refund. For a struggling single mother with mouths to feed*, that income tax refund is the one thing they can look forward to between early February and May.

    Meanwhile, over 20,000 households earning over $200,000 per year avoided paying federal income taxes, according to data from the IRS. Of those 20,000, over 4,000 were millionaires:

    So how does someone in the top 3 percent of America’s income earners finagle their income tax burden down to zero? For the majority of them, it’s all about donating to charity, investing in local and state governments, earning money overseas and writing off doctor bills.

    In Hendricks’ Wisconsin case, ABC Supply switched from an ”S” corporation, which passes all of its profits and losses through its owner to be taxed under personal income, to a “C” corporation, which stands independently of its owner and whose income is subject to corporate taxes.

    Scott Bianchini, ABC tax director, told the Journal-Sentinel that the switch was a “substantial part” of why Hendricks had no state income tax liability. Bianchini noted that while Hendricks’ tax burden was minuscule this year, the billionaire has paid more than $10 million in taxes since 2005.

    The wealthy have a variety of methods at their disposal to avoid federal income taxes. Mitt Romney himself should know, with his Swiss bank accounts and investments in the Cayman Islands. Yet and still, its the people making under $50,000 without paying federal income taxes that conservatives claim to champion yet simultaneously castigate.

    Conservatives see no issues with wealthy entrepreneurs and major corporations using tax dodges to reduce or even eliminate their tax burden, as it would be exactly what less well off conservatives would do if they themselves were wealthy. Seeing struggling single mothers and other people near the poverty line go bereft of substantial tax burdens is something that pisses conservatives off - after all, poverty is considered a shameful defect and positive proof of general laziness among people who should quit with the entitlements, pull up bootstraps and get back to work like normal, regular hardworking Americans with incomes above $200,000.

    A near-fanatical hatred of those worse-off and a near sycophantic devotion to the wealthy is a linchpin of conservative ideology. If you're not doing well for yourself, then something is obviously wrong with you, never mind any other factors that could easily plunge someone into poverty. The wealthy love seeing middle and low-income conservatives do their dirty work for them - having these people blindly attack welfare and entitlement means future opportunities to satiate Republican bloodlust draconian regulation or outright cancellation of helpful assistance programs, save for the ones that directly help their base. It also means future opportunity for the wealthy to shove what was once Social Security or Medicare money into their own pockets via speculative market investments and other vehicles that are supposed to be "better" than Social Security.

    Mitt Romney thinks 47 percent of Americans are hopeless "welfare cases" who slavishly follow President Obama in hope of undeserved crumbs and trinkets here and there. That 47 percent should speak loud and clear what they think of Mittens come November 5. And despite all of the above evidence of Romney and Co. not really giving a flying toss about middle and low-income conservatives, they'll still vote for the man, if only to see the imaginary "welfare queen" get hoisted up by her bootstraps.

    *Along with Buy-Here-Pay-Here car lots, tax return preparers specializing in "advances" and pretty much any retailer who loves seeing the influx of taxpayers with wads of cash burning holes in their pockets.