Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Nationality: United States
Executive summary: CEO, llinois Policy Institute
From an interview with Michael Finney (KGO AM-81, 27 October 2012, 1PM hour):
FINNEY: I don't think we're turning them [the "1%"] into villains because of their achievement, I think we're turning them into villains because they pay substantially lower tax rates than a ditch digger.
Micheal Finney makes the point that capital gains income is taxed at 15%, a rate much lower than that of ordinary income. And that only the "owners", who are overwhelmingly the wealthy, are taxed at the generously lower rate. Tillman responds that this isn't the case:
TILLMAN: Well, keep in mind that the owners you are talking about are retirees, people of very modest income with 401Ks, people who have any kind of IRAs, you know, over 50% of the people in the country are invested in the stock market and are getting a 15% return [sic: he means taxed at 15%] through their retirement portfolios. It's not just the wealthy or the affluent who are getting that kind of income, it's your grandma down the street who's in her 50s or 60s who's worked a middle class or upper middle class life or worked for a union, all those years who've accumulated a 401K or IRA, that's making that 15%. When you want to raise dividend income [sic: he means taxes] You're not just talking about the 1%, you're talking about the 50% that own stock in this country.
Here, he disingenuously paints those with retirement plans as benefiting from the lower tax regime. This is not true at all. Money put into a 401K, IRA, annuity or pension is not subject to the 15% tax. It's actually taxed as ordinary income when it is withdrawn. This is not a minor point -- it's central to his attempt to make the 15% capital gains tax rate sound more palatable by falsely implying that ordinary people benefit from it to a far greater extent than they actually do.
It is difficult for an interviewer to catch an untruth such as this, so it often passes unchallenged.
Wife: Julie (one daughter)
University: Wayne State University
Citizens in Charge Board of Directors
Illinois Policy Institute CEO (2004-)
Sam Adams Alliance
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