We have seen the future, and it sucks.

Thanks to the Tax Code, Sometimes Work Really Doesn’t Pay

27th November 2012

Megan McArdle turns over a rock.

Quoting a correspondent:

I figure I have about a $4000 window where I am truly indifferent as to whether I receive a higher salary or not.  That effects all types of things.  Would my wife like to work for the local FEDEX hub this Christmas season to earn a little for more toys?  Yep.  Does it make sense?  No, because each dollar she earns for the next $4000 we just give to the federal government and that doesn’t include the increased state and local taxes.

That’s government for you.

But the phase-outs create large income ranges where raising your salary doesn’t make you noticeably better off–may even make you worse off.  It’s sort of a miracle that anyone manages to break through those ranges into higher tax brackets.

Assuming, that is, that they actually want people to break through those ranges into higher tax brackets. That might make them less dependent on government assistance, and hence less reliable as Democrat ‘We Want Free Stuff’ voters.

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