Last night on TV I watched a repeat of one of my favourite shows, The West Wing, during which the character Sam Seaborn makes the following assertion:
"Henry, last fall, every time your boss got on the stump and said, "It’s time for the rich to pay their fair share," I hid under a couch and changed my name. I left Gage Whitney making $400,000 a year, which means I paid 27 times the national average in income tax. I paid my fair share, and the fair share of 26 other people. And I’m happy to, ‘cause that’s the only way it’s gonna work. And it’s in my best interest that everybody be able to go to schools and drive on roads. But I don’t get 27 votes on Election Day. The fire department doesn’t come to my house 27 times faster and the water doesn’t come out of my faucet 27 times hotter. The top one percent of wage earners in this country pay for 22 percent of this country. Let’s not call them names while they’re doing it, is all I’m saying."
Incredibly, neither 'Henry' nor any of the other characters in the room replied to Sam's argument. How about something like:
"Sam, you paid more than 20 times the national average in income tax because you were being paid more than 20 times the national average in income. You're not 20 times a better person than the average man. You're not 20 times smarter and you didn't work 20 times more hours. You paid a lot more tax than most people because you got a lot more money than most people."