Minnesota Tax Tea Party Conversations


 

By Grace Kelly

I went to the Minnesota Tea Party on tax day. I saw a different story than what most people saw. Fortunately, I had a video camera, so you can look over my shoulder.

At a protest, normally, one sees the very hard core support. However, what I saw was widespread disillusionment. In the video, notice how people are blaming politicians on both sides. Note that even though we now have President Obama, there is still is acknowledgment that the problems started in the President Bush administration.

While not claiming to be a complete fact check, let me at least target a few statements in the video:

Fact Check: Across the years and increasingly more in recent years, Minnesota taxes the poor more on a dollar earned than the rich.

Taxing the poor more is displayed by combining all taxes at the state and local level and comparing to the population, by income level.

Fact Check: Actually oil companies frequently make much more than 10% on a gallon of gas.

A gentleman in the video states that oil companies only makes 10% on a gallon. Actually oil companies have high fixed costs that takes years to change, so profits on a gallon vary wildly. I was a senior systems analyst that worked on a major oil company’s financial systems, so I know. Also, articles have published that same information:Oil companies make 55 to 85 cents per gallon profit and Minnesota and federal taxes on a gallon of gas 40.4 cents. And right now, I expect that oil companies are barely breaking even, where last year they probably making excessively high percentages. So last year, the oil companies did make way more profits than the government made in taxes on each gallon! This is a nit point, however better public policy comes from better understanding.

Fact Check: The Federal Reserve is audited.

The Federal Reserve is audited, although one could argue if the audits are through enough, transparent enough or timely enough.

In 1978 Congress passed the Federal Banking Agency Audit Act (31 USCA §714). It placed the Federal Reserve System back under the auditing authority of the GAO. The Act significantly increased the access of the GAO to the Federal Reserve Banks, the Board, and the Federal Open Market Committee (the FOMC). Since then, the GAO has conducted over 100 financial audits and performance audits of the three Federal Reserve bodies.(Public Eye)

Fact Check: The Canadian Dollar is worth more than the US Dollar

At one point this was true, but not now.  The US Dollar has been solidly worth more than the Canadian Dollar since October 2008.  One US Dollar now buys 1.21 Canadian Dollars.

Related Coverage:

Spontenous Porta Potties at “Tea Party” Rally

Raw Video of “tea party”  Part 1  and Part 2

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