RichardCohen says he's "still waiting for someone ... to tell {him} why {the so-called "tax bubble"} means that the federal government taxes personal income from $75,000 to $200,000 at a 33 percent rate, while income beyond $200,000 is taxed at a 28 percent rate.

The fact is that the bubble is perfectly consistent with the principle of tax progressivity. A person making $85,000 a year doesn't pay 33 percent of his whole earnings in federal income taxes; if he has a family, personal and family exemptions allow him to pay no taxes on some of his income, and on much of it he pays only a 15 percent rate.

So although our $85,000 earner pays 33 percent on $10,000 of his income, his average tax rate is considerably less than 28 percent. As one's income increases and a larger percentage of it is taxed at the 33 percent rate, one's average tax rate comes closer to 28 percent until finally, at $200,000, it reaches that level.

After $200,000 there's no need for a 33 percent tax anymore, because the earner's average tax rate is already at the maximum of 28 percent. Therefore, it's incorrect to say that the "less wealthy" pay proportionately more in taxes than the "more wealthy."