[caption id="" align="alignright" width="240" caption="Photo of Mark Cuban used under a Creative Commons license from JD Lasica / SocialMedia.biz"][/caption] Warren Buffett isn't the only megabillionaire who understands that we all do better in America when everyone does right by America. I'm not in 100% agreement with billionaire Mark Cuban, but he makes an interesting point in a recent blog post. (Fair warning on the link: we try to stay family friendly with the language on our blog; Cuban does not.)
"[B]e Patriotic. Go out there and get rich. Get so obnoxiously rich that when that tax bill comes , your first thought will be to choke on how big a check you have to write. Your 2nd thought will be “what a great problem to have”, and your 3rd should be a recognition that in paying your taxes you are helping to support millions of Americans that are not as fortunate as you."To pick a nit, there's a lot to be said for the young men and women who selflessly serve in the military, the teachers who work for low pay in rural communities not because they couldn't do better for themselves, but because they wanted to better others. Are businessmen and women more patriotic? It's hard to see it that way. But Cuban is right. There's also something to be said for entrepreneurs to take risks, to work hard at a business, to hire people and train them on new skillsets. And he's also right that if they are successful, they need to recognize their continued success depends on a healthy government role in stabilizing the economy. If you're wondering who Mark Cuban is, he's a billionaire who made his initial fortune in technology in the 1990s. He then bought the Dallas Mavericks pro basketball franchise, where he's made a name for himself by receiving massive fines for criticizing referees and matching them with equal contributions to charity. He paid for the team's victory parade in June when they won the league championship; like many cities around America, Dallas faced a cash crunch that would have taken away from essential services if they had to pay for the traditional victory parade. It's nice that Cuban, despite the fact that he's rich enough to not care a whit what anyone else thinks, still recognizes that millionaires and billionaires ought to pay their fair share and stop squawking about taxes. After all, 7000 millionaires didn't even pay income tax last year - zero dollars. Why should millionaires pay a lower rate than middle class Americans?
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