Jay-Z Would Pay More Taxes, If It Went to the Right Things
When it comes to percentages, Jay-Z probably resides somewhere in the top 0.0001% of income earners. But one of the richest rappers (and people) in the world now says he’d gladly pay more taxes – that is, if it went to the right things.
“Personally I wouldn’t mind paying more taxes if it went to the things that really mattered, if it went to education, people in poverty, if it went to the right things I wouldn’t mind,” Jay-Z told CNN.
Others in the upper crust, most notably Warren Buffett, have also called for higher taxes on the rich. And in the music sphere, well-paid musicians like John Legend have also supported hikes on the elite. But Jay-Z is famous for living both sides: he started life as Sean Carter in the Marcy Projects in Brooklyn, with an absentee dad and few opportunities. Decades later, he’s now surfing at the highest levels of wealth.
Which probably introduces a complex perspective. “I’m pretty much in the middle of both sides, because you can understand paying so much for taxes, and then things not improving, you’re like ‘where’s everything going to?'” Carter continued. “It should be open accounting of where everything’s going to. I think most people with a conscience, with integrity and moral fiber wouldn’t have a problem paying more taxes.”
But is Jay-Z guilty of some high-income doublespeak? On one hand, Jay-Z is willing to pay more, but not without major governmental changes. Yet the remaining 99 percent are also paying into the same, opaque system, which sort of brings the discussion back to square one.
The comments follow an earlier misstep with Occupy sympathizers. After the movement started to gain steam, Jay-Z’s Rocafella fashion line introduced a t-shirt emblazoned with the modified slogan, “Occupy All Streets.” But none of the profits associated with that merchandise were given back to the movement itself, and the shirts were pulled.