The tax shell game shows up in numbers

Minnesota 2020 has a fascinating analysis of a Minnesota Department of Revenue tax study. When you factor in local taxes with state taxes, high income Minnesotans pay less as a percentage of their income than low income Minnesotans.

Local property taxes are taxes. Tuition is a tax. Fees are a tax. Minnesota has abandoned its history as a state with unmatched public services and schools paid for by a fair, progressive tax code and embraced a budgetary shell game advanced by those who think the Deep South is a model for how government should run. If numbers were exciting, they’d be throwing tea at the governor. Wait until suburban school districts start to taste decline. Then they just might.


  1. Why is tuition a tax? If a person goes to a private college, one pays quite a bit more, because it isn’t subsidized as much by taxes (there actually is some tax contribution, but it isn’t as well known.) But at a public college, the percentage one pays is only a small portion of the total cost, so the student probably benefits more from the taxes others pay than they actually pay themselves. But school is a choice.

    If tuition is a tax, then so it the fee one pays to go into state parks, parking fees, etc. |

    Maybe we’re only disagreeing on terminology???

  2. Dead on!

    This state has totally abandoned it’s progressive roots. Minnesota Republicans must believe that the Deep South is a wonderful place to emulate.

    Look at all the fees that you pay in a year, (Title fees, court process fees, licensing fees, health assessment fees(tobacco) etc.).

    Add this to all the taxes you pay that are not income based, things like: the gas tax, alcohol tax, general sales tax.

    The percentage of income for all the taxes/fees listed above are all regressive taxes, they effect the lower income groups much more that the upper brackets, as it pertains to percentage paid by income.

    Add to the mix that lower income groups are more likely to: smoke (thus paying much more in “health assesment fees”), drink more (the alcohol tax is charged per ounce, not by the price of product, so be it Sunny Hill or Grey Goose the sin tax is the same on a liter) and the picture gets even worse.

    Now take into account all the tax shelters that are available to the upper class. The picture is even worse.

    Now look at the property tax rate as it pertains to income. Worse yet.

    Unfortunately for us, the Democrats are not always the Progressive tax proponents they claim to be. They tend to support raising taxes and fees that end up being terribly regressive quite frequently. I wish that the DFL would wake up, and start instituting truly progressive taxation. Populism is a powerful tool when it rallies the masses. What the DFL does not need to be hearing the next election is, “Ya made mah smokes and mah Weskey go up, yah pinko liberal scum!”

    Sometimes I think I should join a union, move to the Range, and get a Red Star tattooed on my forehead. It seems there is no justice in the class system of the United States.

    Footnote: The wealthiest 1% of this country have anywhere between 34% and 50%, (depending on which statistics you believe), of the wealth in the United states.

  3. Now the DFL is introducing bills to raise the income tax on all Minnesotans, not just the upper income levels.

    In my way of thinking those of us in the middle and lower classes cannot afford more taxes in the middle of this recession/depression. Again a little economic populism would go a long ways…

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