While millions of households across the United States are scrambling to file — or extend — their taxes by the April 19th deadline, members of our billionaire class are doing a great deal more smiling than scrambling.

Why? Because the U.S. tax code is built to reward wealth over work and serves big corporate interests over working families.

Trillions of dollars goes untaxed each year, deftly squirreled away by tax professionals hired by the nation’s wealthy and powerful or left untouched because the federal government doesn’t tax wealth as it does income.

Over one recent five-year period, a bombshell ProPublica investigation from 2022 revealed, the 25 richest Americans paid a true tax rate of roughly 3.4 percent. This means nurses, teachers, firefighters, and other middle class frontline workers paid a larger share of their income in taxes than America’s billionaires.

Corporations, too, are skilled at avoiding taxation. In 2020, at least 55 of the largest corporations in America paid no federal corporate income taxes despite enjoying substantial pretax profits in the United States.

So what could we fund by creating a tax system where the wealthy (mostly white men) and corporations (mostly led by white men) pay their fair share? We could start by investing in women and families.

In the spirit of tax season, the National Women’s Law Center created an interactive tax calculator that provides examples of how much revenue could be raised by taxing the patriarchy through different tax policies — and how that money could be used to fund public investments in paid leave, child care, and aging and disability care, which all of us need and deserve.

Rebekah Entralgo Fernandez is the managing editor of Inequality.org. You can follow her on Twitter at @rebekahentralgo.

Get more news like this, directly in your inbox.

Subscribe to our newsletter.