The top one-half of 1% of the U.S. population owns 58% of private businesses and 47% of U.S. stocks, according to a staff study by the Joint Economic Committee of Congress. The bottom 90% of Americans own only 28% of the nation's wealth.
What do the top half of 1% do with their money? A minuscule minority are philanthropists, and the corporations they own reflect it. Two-thirds of U.S. corporations give nothing to charity, according to a recent report by the Carnegie Commission. Ninety-five percent give no more than $500 per year.
What are they doing with all this money? Among other things, they buy Learjets, multiple vacation homes--in places like Ibiza, the Azores, or the Hamptons--join country clubs, and lavishly entertain "business" guests. The rest of the profits--after the bills are paid to keep the yacht over in Monaco--go into banks in Beverly Hills or Switzerland.
So why is President Reagan asking Congress to cut taxes for the the richest tax bracket from 50% to 27%?
The tax rewrite is supposed to be revenue-neutral. If taxes to the very rich were cut in half, who do you suppose would have to make up the difference. Who else?