On ABC Friday night, John Stossel reported on the 10 Myths of popularly held beliefs and debunks them. A couple of doosies right here:
Myth No. 5 — The Rich Don't Pay Their Fair Share of Taxes
We've all heard this one during the presidential campaign. When it comes to income taxes, the Democratic presidential candidates keep telling us, the rich don't pay enough. That's a widespread belief, but do the politicians even know how much of the income tax burden the rich pay now?
According to presidential candidate Al Sharpton, "The top one percent in this country pays very much less than ten percent, very much less than five percent."
Sharpton said he thinks the wealthy should pay "somewhere around 15 percent."
But that's so silly because — and I bet most of you don't know this — the IRS says the richest 1 percent of taxpayers already pay 34 percent of all income taxes. Twice what Sharpton wanted them to pay.
Still you may feel the rich should pay even more. It's a tempting thought, since they have so much.
But let's remember the facts: the top 1 percent of Americans — those who earn more than about $300,000 a year — pay 34 percent, more than a third of all income taxes, and the top 5 percent, those making over $125,000, pay more than half.
I can't believe ABC let that on the air. It's about time.
Myth No. 3 — Guns are Bad
... public service announcements and news stories make it seem as if the accidents kill thousands of kids every year.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, however, fewer than 100 kids 15 and under are killed in gun accidents every year. Of course that's horrible, and I understand why demonstrators say we need more gun control.
But guess what? The Centers for Disease Control recently completed a review of studies of various types of gun control: background checks, waiting periods, bans on certain guns and ammunition. It could not document that these rules have reduced violent crime. The government wants to say things like the Brady Gun Control Law are making a difference, but they aren't. Some maximum security felons I spoke to in New Jersey scoffed at measures like the Brady law. They said they'll have no trouble getting guns if they want them.
A Justice Department study confirmed what the prisoners said. But get this: the felons say that the thing they fear the most is not the police, not time in prison, but, you, another American who might be armed.
It's a reason many states are passing gun un-control. They're allowing citizens to carry guns with them; it's called concealed carry or right to carry. Some women say they're comforted by these laws.
Many people are horrified at the idea of concealed carry laws, and predict mayhem if all states adopt these laws.
But surprise, 36 states already have concealed carry laws, and not one reported an upsurge in gun crime.
Believe me, I won't be giving up my guns or my carry permit anytime soon.