I want more return on my investment.

State Finances: Federal Taxes Collected vs. Federal Funding by State

According to this, Minnesota ranks #50, meaning we get about $0.50 back in federal funding for every dollar in taxes we pay (using 2007-2009 figures).

This does not make me want to take former Senators Dayton and Coleman out for dinner in downtown Duluth.

It also brings this question to my mind:  how much influence do governors have over federal funding?  Are governors involved in the discussion of federal funding in any concrete way?

37 Comments

RightElbow

about 10 years ago

I would appreciate a thank-you note from Mississippi.

zra

about 10 years ago

I'm surprised Texas didn't rate higher. Gov Rick "Keep your bailout funds out of my state" Perry took a little over 6 billion in "bailout" funds to cover their slightly less than 7 billion budget shortfall, which kept them from having to dip into their 9 billion "rainy day fund."

dbrewing

about 10 years ago

Fuck the south.

Lojasmo

about 10 years ago

You named Dayton, but not Amy K?

As to your last question...quite a bit.  Pawlenty declined Medicaid reimbursement to the tune of 1.2 billion dollars.  Governor Dayton signed an executive order to obtain those monies as his first act.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Our debt has reached the point where it is the number one threat to the continuation of our nation. We have less than 10 years before we reach an economic meltdown which will plunge us into a depression that will make the 30's seem tame. We've never been in so much trouble, and it's getting worse by the second. Taxes won't work, tax cuts won't work, spending more won't work, printing money won't work. The only thing that will work is spending less than we earn and saving. Because our debt is so big, we may not be able to achieve that. Bush made things way worse, and Obama seems to be in a contest to see if he can out-spend Bush. Funny how Clinton seems to be not so bad looking back...

jessige

about 10 years ago

I named Dayton and not Klobuchar because the figures are from 2007-2009, when she wasn't in office.

And my governor question was really about T-Paw, too, because of the time period.

Weirdly, at this moment, I agree with what might be the brightest thing I've seen Jim say yet.

Dave Sorensen

about 10 years ago

Two-thirds of major corporations pay zero taxes. Tax them. The richest 1% of Americans own as much wealth as the bottom 90%. Tax them. The military takes 50% of every federal tax dollar. Shut down the empire and shrink the military. 

Support unions so workers can earn more. Corporate profits are at an all-time high, as is income disparity. The financial sector, which recently crashed the world economy, receives bailouts and bonuses while the rest of us get austerity measures. 

Single-payer health care will save everyone money except the insurance industry and make us more competitive in the world. 

The U.S. has money, it's just concentrated at the top and in the wrong places. Average Americans are left to fight over the scraps, and many fall for the phony divide and conquer propaganda put out by the very corporate "persons" who pay no taxes themselves. Luckily, people are waking up to the class-war being waged against them, and it's push-back time. Republicans rant about "redistributing the wealth," but they're OK with it as long as it's being redistributed upward. That has to stop.

zra

about 10 years ago

this whole scenario is being approached from the wrong perspective...

corporations should be taxed according to the amount of money they take out of our economy by outsourcing their workforce.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Sorry Dave,
You are waaay off. Health and Human Services is the number one spender. SS is second, even though it isn't technically part of the budget, Defense is a close 3rd and debt load is a close fourth. Although your argument seems to make sense, it doesn't address the real issue, which is titanic debt. Taxing won't work, and neither will reducing taxes. All you are doing is moving the debt load around! Drastic cuts to spending is the only cure, along with personal saving. And when I say drastic, I mean drastic. IF we don't, we'll be bankrupt by 2020. There's no one left to borrow from, and the dollar will be worth a peso...

Dave Sorensen

about 10 years ago

The official view of the budget is distorted by including trust funds such as Social Security, and by not distinguishing expenses from past military spending from non-military spending. In reality 18% of the budget is related to past military and 36% is related to current military spending. That's 54% military. Not counting the trust funds that are supposed to be separate (though I grant you they have been raided ) gives us about 30% for Human Resources. 

Where your income tax money really goes



And please tell me, why won't taxing the 2/3 of corporations that currently pay no taxes bring down our debt? This whole push for austerity is just more class war against those who can least afford to pay. As I said, corporate profits are at an all-time high and we're being told we're broke, though we always have money for our endless wars.

zra

about 10 years ago

This is gonna be fun.

jessige

about 10 years ago

I heard an interview on the World Service last week with an economist about corporate taxation.  Of course I can't find it online now, but the basic gist was that the lack of taxation on the richest 1% in society ensures the demise of the lower half.  Reduction in nutritional standards, reduction in education, reduction in housing assistance--they all add up to the destruction of 50% of the society.  

So, Jim, I'm guessing that the fiddling you're doing while Rome burns is a lovely tune, but I'm also guessing that your checking account doesn't put you in the 50% who'll make it.

If someone else's Google-fu is stronger than mine and they can find that interview, that would be excellent.

Jim

about 10 years ago

IOUSA is a non-partisan look at the national debt and how it's current obligations are worse than anyone really understands. For all you tree lickers, the last third is a slam on Bush, if that makes you more inclined to watch it...

Jadiaz

about 10 years ago

Tax corporations who will then:

1. Leave the U.S. taking all their money with them and costing Americans jobs.

2. Stay in the U.S. but downsize to cover taxes, again costing Americans jobs.

3. Pass the higher taxes onto consumers through higher prices, which in turn will do nothing to help the lower middle class and poor as they will be even harder pressed to afford goods and services they can barely afford now.

Why not actually tax everyone and keep the taxes collected. How many people get more back in taxes than they pay in? Does that make sense? 

I love getting my return, but can never figure out why they take my money in the first place to give me back several hundred more than than they originally took. 

Perhaps a flat tax is the best way to go. 17% or so. The rich will pay more than the poor, and don't give anyone any refund.

zra

about 10 years ago

The notion that if corporation's tax breaks are eliminated they will somehow "pack up" and leave is asinine. It's a scare tactic used by "news" outlets to goad you into supporting the idea that these "people" (and by people, I mean corporations, for the Supreme Court ruled that a corporation is a person) are somehow going to lose their shirts if they have to pay their taxes!

Take a good look around, Jadiaz, they've done that already. Millions of manufacturing and vital tech jobs have left the country in the last 10-15 years because they got tax breaks to leave. 

Tax loopholes and subsidies to corporations must be rolled back. U.S.-based corporations that choose to continue offshore manufacturing should be taxed according to the profits they receive as a result of lost revenue to the home economy. 

Instead of encouraging corporations to lay off American workers in favor of cheap labor overseas by giving them tax incentives, they should be penalized for killing American jobs and taking their operations overseas.

Jadiaz

about 10 years ago

Did I say they would lose their shirts? No. Running any business is about making profits. If you can do something to increase profits, you do it. If something, i.e. higher taxes, is going to eat into your profit margin, you do something, i.e. leaving, laying workers off, or passing off increases to consumers, in order to maintain or increase profit margins. 

It's pretty simple. You also only addressed 1 of 3 things that happens. No argument against the others? That higher taxes or taxes being made to be paid would be pushed on the consumer, thus ensuring higher prices and in essence a greater tax not on the corporations but we the people. How about that corporations in the U.S. would downsize further to keep profit margins? 

You can choose to ignore the obvious things that would occur. I will not. It is simple economics.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Flat tax and allodial titles. Absolutely a must.

zra

about 10 years ago

Considering most of the larger corporations hide behind sneaky tax loopholes and even get out of payong taxes altogether while the rest if us are left to pick up the tab at the expense of our services, roads, and public safety...I think that only one of the three issues *needs* to be addressed, because the other two go hand in hand with the first in terms of scare tactic. Face it, the lack of accountability on the part of corporations and wall street are what got us into this mess to begin with. In order to fix what's wrong, we have to address the *real* cause and not the scapegoat.

zra

about 10 years ago

In other words: It's the corporate welfare, stupid.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Nice wide brush, Zra. I wish it was that easy. At what point do you say enough profit, oh wealthy one? Do you adopt a Ben and Jerry model for lowest to highest paid? How do you deal with public entities that have accountability to its shareholders? The old adage of never having worked for a poor man holds a lot of weight. Flat tax for all. Penalties for outsourcing employees to foreigners. That's a start. Penalize those that utilize foriegn manufacturing? I don't think that works now, but could work if enough of a manufacturing base returned. How do you bring back those companies? Tax incentives?? Hmmmm. They aren't all evil. If it wasn't for large, profitable companies, we'd all be in the poor house.

Resolut

about 10 years ago

Tax corporations who will then:

2. Stay in the U.S. but downsize to cover taxes, again costing Americans jobs.

Corporate taxes are paid on net income.  This means corporations subtract expenses (including wages) from revenues and pay taxes on the difference.  If tax rates increase and the company irrationally responds by cutting its wage expense(jobs) without revenues declining, then its taxes will be even higher due to lower expenses and higher net income.  If they can only cut wages to the detriment of revenue, then they're going to senselessly miss out on the 60% of net income that doesn't go to taxes.

Businesses make hiring decisions based on demand for their goods and services. A rational business will maximize its revenue with the lowest possible costs.  This means it will add employees when they are needed to meet increased demand.  The primary driver of demand is consumer spending by the middle class.

zra

about 10 years ago

I think you're on the right track, actually, jim...

Looking at it subjectively, our economy and infrastructure are in shambles and corporate profits are at an all time high, and corporate taxes haven't been this low in recent memory. 

Doesn't take a math whiz to figure out that equation. 

What I'm getting at is that we should compel corporations to pay what they're supposed to pay, just like the rest of us. If they want to outsource their labor, tax the shit out of them. If they want to locate their HQ to a PO box in the caymans a la Halliburton, tax the shit out of them. If they spur (real) economic growth by expanding their manufacturing operations to the American workforce instead of fucking us over in the name of more money, then give them those tax cuts.

TimK

about 10 years ago

Capitalism is sooooo over.

Resolut

about 10 years ago

Tax corporations who will then:

3. Pass the higher taxes onto consumers through higher prices, which in turn will do nothing to help the lower middle class and poor as they will be even harder pressed to afford goods and services they can barely afford now.

This is a fallacy also. Passing the cost of higher taxes onto consumers poses a mathematical problem.  Those higher prices show up as revenues on the income statement which increases net income which increases taxes.

This talking point assumes business make pricing decisions on cost+ formula.  Except in the most monopolistic cases, they do not.

Pricing decisions are made to maximize gross income based on price elasticity in the market. Gross income is determined by subtracting the direct costs of goods from the sales price. This means raising prices will increase the gross income per item sold but will reduce number sold.  Lowering prices will increase the number of items sold, but reduce the gross profit on each. 

A business prices its products at the sweet spot that maximizes its overall gross income. It has exactly nothing to do income tax rates.

Resolut

about 10 years ago

Tax corporations who will then:

1. Leave the U.S. taking all their money with them and costing Americans jobs.

This is a complicated issue.  Tax rates and loopholes certainly come into play when multinationals are making decisions about where to locate operations.

But many other factors are arguably more important when a company decides where to employ people.  Where are the customers located? Where do raw materials come from? What are prevailing wages? What skills does the local workforce have? Is the transportation and public infrastructure adequate? Does the location have honest courts and legal recourse? Is the country stable? How much local crime is there?  Is the climate desirable? Can we dump toxic waste into the rivers without penalty?

The last thing the united states needs to do to compete globally is try to attract business with the tax rates of Sudan, the wages of China, or the environmental regulation of Mexico.

How we compete is subject to debate, but it starts with an educated workforce, world class infrastructure, environmental laws to insure our country remains inhabitable, art and culture so we're a place people desire to live.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Sorry Tim, but I couldn't disagree more. Capitalism is the only thing that can get us out of this mess. It just needs to be tweaked to insure that the US is competing on a level playing field. We're not right now, and the greedy minority is taking advantage of our willingness to sacrifice our capitalistic value system in favor of getting an edge on the competition. Until we're Ok with paying a bit more for made in the USA, we'll continue to slip.

pH

about 10 years ago

How about a flat tariff on imported goods? For much of our history, the Federal government was primarily funded by tariffs on imported goods. Also intriguing: there was no income tax.  Check out the Hamilton Tariffs.  Could argue this early protectionism kept the US from being just another resource rich, yet impoverished, euro-colonial outpost.    

Regarding the original post: Is there any statistical benefit to having a risk pool larger than 5.2 million people?  (~MN pop.) Could we do many things better on a state scale, vs lowest-common-denominator nationally?

TimK

about 10 years ago

With the exception of energy and food, we sell six things in this country: cars, homes, TVs, computers, cell phones and weapons. We still make cars, but import a lot of parts + we compete with foreign makers. We still make houses, but that market went kaflooie based on outright fraud in the banking industry. There are no U.S. manufacturers of TVs, computers or cell phones. That leaves weapons. We are really good at that, and so far, really competitive in that market internationally. Too bad we can't eat our guns.

Ira Hayes

about 10 years ago

I hate government weapons. Why can't we sell useful things like clear soccer balls with lights inside that flash when you kick them, fuel efficient jet packs,  cigarettes that taste like candy and come in 101 flavors? Oh wait...  My own government works project idea is a giant catapult  that launches you way out over the lake in a flying needle shaped pod vessel that breaks the impact of you hitting the water, then you just drive it back to shore, and rides are only like ten bucks. 

Jim, when did you first become aware our previous president was perhaps the greatest F-stick of the 21st century, was it before or after the second time you voted for him? Don't feel bad, millions of people were duped into believing this spot-on chimp impersonator had a heart of gold, whereas his legacy was actually bankrupting the country through deregulation and war, and annihilating half a million Arabs in the process.  We're just in a healthy down time of reaping what we sowed, as a country often gets what it deserves. Planteth we the seeds of shit, be us not confused whence we harvest shit flowers.

Lojasmo

about 10 years ago

Jim:  just in case you missed the big-ass pie chart, military spending comprises just over half the budget.  Non military HHS, about a third.

Jim

about 10 years ago

Sorry Lo, you must have not read the disclaimer. It even admits to not including disbursements and the "borrowing" of SS money. Your big-ass chart is wrong, and skewed. Here's a more accurate representation of where we are at. It is non-partisan, except for maybe the criticism of Bush at the end. Watch it, and let me know what you think. I'm sincerely curious what happens when a died-in-the-wool (It's an intentional pun Danny!!) lib is presented with accurate, easy to understand facts.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O_TjBNjc9Bo

BeastOfBurden

about 10 years ago

To those cursing the South: Apparently we need to take care of the poor, just not the poor in the South.  Hypocritical arseholes.

resolut

about 10 years ago

Hypocritical is the 'conservative' south squealing about socialism while they redistribute liberal states' tax revenue to themselves.

zra

about 10 years ago

since the conservaparrots are so enamored with charts and graphs, here's a simple, easy to understand breakdown of tax dollars paid to the gov't, and the amount of federal tax allotments per those dollars...

in other words, if you'll look at the highest payment/allotment earner, you'll see that 
New Mexico gets $2.03 back for every tax dollar that they send to the Feds...Mississippi is just behind them with 2.02.  Minnesota ranks somewhere near the bottom of the heap at #46 with .71 cents back on every tax dollar we pay out.

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