Editor:

Despite all the spin surrounding Mitt Romney's recent comment about the 47 percent of Americans who don't pay income taxes, there is an undeniable, sobering truth that lies in that number.

And that's not the only number. While tax-and-spend politicians love to talk about the wealthy needing to "pay their fair share" of taxes, they seldom mention that approximately 70 percent of all federal income taxes are already paid by the wealthiest 10 percent of taxpayers. That's right, one out of 10 Americans must bear more than two-thirds of the nation's income tax bill while approximately half of Americans (the aforementioned 47 percent) bear none of it at all.

Talk about fairness. The fact is that the wealthy (and, increasingly, the less-than-wealthy) are already paying not only their fair share of taxes but also that of many others.


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Admittedly, there are some in the top 10 percent (and the other brackets) whose success has come by taking advantage of others. And that is wrong whenever it occurs. Likewise, there are some in the 47 percent of non payers who truthfully cannot pay. And we should take care of our own when they cannot take care of themselves. However, does anyone truly believe that half of all eligible taxpayers are in this category? Furthermore, does anyone truly believe that we as society can sustain a system that increasingly requires a small percentage of citizens to pay the income tax bills for most everyone else?

No, the truth is that current attempts to "redistribute wealth," no matter how they are spun or advertised, are largely serving to penalize success, encourage dependency, and create a welfare society in which the "safety net" for those who can't help themselves is increasingly becoming a net of entrapment and entitlement for those who can. The numbers simply don't lie.

Eric Edwards

Forest Hill