One of the big stick-it-to-the-rich issues has always been capital gains taxes. I've always been against them because they don't just affect the rich, they effect anyone who ever sells stock or a house, which is the vast majority of the population. That said, someone who gets most of their income from stocks (Bill Gates types) should still be paying taxes on that. I don't know how, but a perfect solution to this just popped into my head: make the first $50,000 (per year, per person) deductable. The rest would be taxed at the usual 15% (except for stocks held less than a year, which as now are taxed as ordinary income). I could (maybe) be talked into upping it to 20%, though there is some truth to the argument that doing so hurts the economy by discouraging the movement of money in and out of investments. Also, I'm still not in favor of treating all of it like ordinary income because it isn't ordinary income. I'd rather not get into a discussion of that aspect of this, but the reasoning is that "ordinary income" is an expense for a business. It comes out of the business's profiits. Investment income is not a cost for anyone. I choose $50,000 because thats what I consider a resonable middle class retirement income for a retired person living off a 401K. It also covers a retired couple selling a $250,000 house to live in a $150,000 condo. But if Bill Gates wants to sell a hundred million of MSFT to buy a yacht, he'll pay 15%. Comments?