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19 comments, In Series: American Dynasties and Dynasty Taxes

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End Dynasty Welfare. Start the "Dynasty Tax"

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It is time for the congress to stop giving "dynasty welfare" to the richest Americans.

Conservatives love their word engineering for inheritance taxes, reframing them as "Death Taxes." Frank Luntz isn't the only one who can play the spin game. I say call estate taxes Dynasty Taxes.

Should estate and inheritance taxes be eliminated? The issue will surely be raised again with the new, incoming congress.

It is time to fight back with word engineering that reframes the tax breaks to wealthy inheritors as welfare for the rich and the tax on estates as a "dynasty tax" that makes it a little bit more difficult to build a multi-generational dynasty that gets a massive advantage just for being born.

A "Dynasty tax" is a great way for the nation-- any nation-- to recover assets and resources that were acquired and not re-invested into the community, into the nation that enabled the profits that produced the massive estate.

Already, generous exemptions are given to families inheriting large estates. It is unreasonable to ask the American people to help uber-rich families to consolidate their wealth with "Dynasty welfare."

America is not a land of dynasties. It should never have allowed their formation and it should actively work to prevent them from developing. We do not need a "royal class." If a person amasses great wealth there is no law, no constitutional right that requires the family, the descendants be allowed to keep it. There is no constitutional right to pass on $50 million dollar castles or mansions.

flickr image by Rhubarble

I believe that a Democracy has a duty to prevent the formation of dynasties, that dynasties can and have become a threat to fair elections and legislation. As the middle class in America becomes more and more marginalized, as the wealth in America becomes more and more top-heavy, benefiting primarily the top five or ten percent, it is more important than ever to INCREASE the dynasty tax on estates exceeding $5 million, even beyond the tax rates due to go into effect soon.

We should incrementally increase taxes on estate values over $20 million. There's no reason a family needs or deserves to retain full ownership of assets over $20 million or $50 million. Tax estate assets over $25 million at 80% , over $50 million at 90%. Tax estate assets over $100 million at 95% and tax estate assets over $500 million at 98%.

Opponents will argue that this will remove the incentive to make a lot of money. Perhaps this not a bad thing. We've seen the destructive power of too big to fail companies. Those companies are handing out over $100 billion in bonuses to people who produced the economic disaster we are still suffering. There are some who argue that estates are used to avoid paying capital gains. Dynasty taxes will recoup those taxes.

A strong middle class is an essential ingredient in any democracy. Dynasties are serious threats to any democracy that allows money to influence the political process. At the least, serious Dynasty taxes should be applied to the top one percent of estates. That will still represent a serious source of added revenues that the nation needs desperately to balance trillion dollar plus debt.


Rob Kall is editor-in-chief, publisher and site architect of, President of Futurehealth, Inc, and an inventor. He hosts the Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show, aired in the Metro Philly area on AM 1360, WNJC. Over 200 podcasts are archived for downloading here, or can be accessed from iTunes. Rob is also published regularly on the

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Rob is, with the first media winner of the Pillar Award for supporting Whistleblowers and the first amendment.

See more Rob Kall articles here and, older ones, here. To learn more about Rob and, check out A Voice For Truth - ROB KALL | OM Times Magazine and this article. For Rob's work in non-political realms mostly before 2000, see his C.V..  and here's an article on the Storycon Summit Meeting he founded and organized for eight years. Press coverage in the Wall Street Journal: Party's Left Pushes for a Seat at the Table

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We should be reframing every languaged phrase that... by Rob Kall on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 8:59:15 AM
And would like to add something. Language counts. ... by BFalcon on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2010 at 10:37:48 AM
Americans should vent to legislators and to those ... by Steven G. Erickson on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 9:19:06 AM
i am with you strongly on this.Republicans keep te... by liberalsrock on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 9:49:49 AM
There should be more division of wealth and that s... by Suzana Megles on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 11:58:21 AM
The 5th amendment is an impediment to your anti-dy... by marvin w. keith on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 1:28:01 PM
Todays dynastys are being created by Corporate Ame... by Michael Hayes on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 1:33:38 PM
There needs to be a Bank Assistance Program like t... by Anton Grambihler on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 1:44:46 PM
As absurd as it is, there are people such as Georg... by stevor on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 5:20:46 PM
And outright theft, they STOLE the damned money fr... by Ian MacLeod on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 9:19:18 PM
Why don't you go crawl back into your hole where y... by Noydb Sodropdead on Monday, Nov 29, 2010 at 10:57:03 PM
Yes, the idea that Grandpa Moneybags will be able ... by Scott Baker on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2010 at 3:33:15 AM
Instead, take from the rich what they are stopping... by David Chester on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2010 at 3:40:04 AM
Yes, by all means we need a LVT. As president of ... by Scott Baker on Wednesday, Dec 1, 2010 at 5:18:22 AM
Question. Does taxing only landowners reduce the ... by Chris Chris on Wednesday, Dec 1, 2010 at 6:27:02 PM
People must have land in order to live - they don'... by Scott Baker on Thursday, Dec 2, 2010 at 10:40:31 AM
Warren Buffet and Bill Gates-- two mega-billionair... by Marta B on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2010 at 4:28:52 AM
I'm all for it. Crackpot (i.e., Friedmanesque) eco... by Perry Logan on Tuesday, Nov 30, 2010 at 6:01:12 AM
Why do any of you feel it is your business to tell... by Chris Chris on Wednesday, Dec 1, 2010 at 6:06:06 PM