Do yourself a favor and watch that graph change a couple of times because your brain will refuse to comprehend it if you just watch it once.

Courtesy of Common Dreams

For the first time in U.S. history, the 400 wealthiest Americans paid less in taxes last year than people in any other income group, thanks to decades of tax cuts and loopholes benefiting the rich.

A year after the Republican tax plan—often called the #GOPTaxScam by critics—was passed into law, the richest people in the country were subject to a 23 percent rate in local, state, and federal taxes.

As New York Times columnist David Leonhardt showed Sunday in a graphic accompanying his op-ed, “The Rich Really Do Pay Lower Taxes Than You,” the tax rate wealthy Americans are forced to pay has plummeted over the last seven decades while middle-income households have paid roughly the same share of their incomes each year.

In 1950, rich Americans paid 70 percent of their income in taxes—a system that Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) has suggested returning to, drawing derision from conservatives. By 1980, the 400 wealthiest people paid 47 percent of their incomes in taxes.

Leonhardt called the trend “maddening.”

I would not suggest that all of this country’s problems would be solved by raising taxes on the wealthiest people in America, but it would certainly solve the vast majority of them. 

I’m good with that, how about you?