Overall, what kind of impact do taxes have on income and wealth distribution?
McIntyre: They even things out a little. They are just a little progressive overall; it does not have a major effect. Of course the tax system funds a lot of government programs, some of which help the lower incomes, some particularly help the higher incomes, like defense and all the things the government does that help business. MM: What proportion of the federal tax take comes from corporations? McIntyre: It is down these days to about 7 percent, about the lowest it has been in a generation. MM: What is that down from? McIntyre: It was 12 to 13 percent when Clinton was still president. Then the combination of various Bush tax cuts for corporations, adopted at the beginning of 2002, and all the tax sheltering that the companies are doing these days has pushed it down to about 7 percent. MM: What were the levels in the years before Clinton? McIntyre: In the sixties, corporations paid about 22 percent of all federal taxes. In the seventies, that fell to 15 percent. It plummeted in Ronal
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