As regular readers have probably noticed, I’m disgusted with this whole media-fabricated “scandal” over Mitt Romney’s taxes. During Monday night’s debate Romney said that the overall effective income tax rate he’d paid for 2010 was around 15%. (His tax rate is much lower today than it was back in his Bain Capital days, because most of his recent income comes from capital gains on investments, which are typically taxed at 15%.) The media quickly erupted with stories claiming, falsely, that this effective tax rate is lower than the rate paid by most middle class workers.
The media treatment of this so-called issue is false in two ways. First, as I pointed out in my last two posts, the tax system in this country is actually steeply progressive. Media claims that “most middle class workers” pay higher effective income tax rates than Romney are just plain lies.