Lion of the Blogosphere

Archive for the ‘Taxes’ Category

Ann Coulter, read my blog

with 15 comments

She wrote this column where she accused Stephen Paddock of being a money launderer.

Too bad she didn’t read my blog. Three days before her column, I wrote:

I am almost certain that the news report that he made $5 million from gambling in 2015 is fake news. Someone is almost certainly ignoring his reported gambling losses during the same year which would be reported as an itemized personal deduction on Form 1040 Schedule A.

What’s more likely? That Stephen Paddock was a master criminal and the authorities are hiding that from us? Or some reporter from the Los Angeles times is too lazy to fact check an article and too stupid to realize that the claim in the article is absurd?

Hanlon’s razor: never attribute to a conspiracy that which is adequately explained by stupidity and incompetence.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

October 16, 2017 at 12:27 pm

Posted in Taxes, Uncategorized

Too good for Republicans

with 54 comments

Yesterday I wrote that the only good thing in the Trump tax plan was removal of the deduction for state taxes. Looks like the only good part is already being rejected by Republicans.

I also predicted that nothing would ever get passed because, as with the ACA bills, zero Democrats would support it, and a few Republican dissenters would kill it. Looks like that’s already happening.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

September 29, 2017 at 5:05 pm

Posted in Taxes

Tax plan

with 35 comments

The bad:

  • Why is Trump pushing this at all, before he fixes immigration?
  • Elimination of estate tax, a giveaway to the richest of the rich who nearly all hate Trump.
  • 25% pass-through tax, a big loophole that makes the higher 35% rate moot for everyone rich enough to afford accountants to turn their income into “pass-through” income. Making the tax plan a massive tax cut for the rich, lowering the top rate from 39.6% to 25%.
  • Tax break for “money” that’s overseas. Money is in quotes because in most cases that money is mostly an accounting trick to avoid paying taxes and not a bunch of bills in suitcases that are waiting to be paid to U.S. workers if only Republicans could “liberate” it from foreign captivity. Do big corporations like Apple and GE really need another tax break right now?
  • Move to a territorial tax system? The worldwide tax system keeps companies honest and prevents them from shifting all of their “profits” to low-tax countries. See above.
  • Elimination of AMT: new loopholes for the rich.

The good:

  • Reducing the value of tax deduction for state income tax, which punishes high-tax states like California and New York which never vote Republican. I say just pass this and forget about the rest of this stupid plan.

The prediction

  • Suddenly, Democrats will care about the budget deficit and Republicans will forget they ever cared about it. Politicians from both parties disgust me.
  • Like ACA repeal, zero Democrats get onboard, and enough Republicans refuse to cooperate so that nothing gets passed.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

September 28, 2017 at 7:40 am

Posted in Taxes

Immigration, not tax reform

I am not happy about Trump pushing tax reform. We know this is going to turn into big tax cuts for the top 1% and for international corporations. And I don’t expect that Republicans in Congress are going to have any greater agreement on this than they had on repealing Obamacare.

And I am very worried about immigration. Trump has done some great stuff on immigration through his appointments and use of executive orders, but all that will be undone if a Democrat takes over in 2020 (which we have to admit is a pretty strong possibility).

I want to see statutes that permanently prevent future presidents from not enforcing the immigration laws the way Obama did. I want E-Verify to be mandatory for all employers whenever they hire someone. I want reductions in legal immigration. I want reductions in H-1 and H-2 visas. I want the wall funded. I want more immigration personnel hired so that we can deport illegal aliens faster. I want the government to stop giving benefits to illegal aliens. This is what Trump should be doing and not wasting whatever political capital he has left on tax reform.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 30, 2017 at 11:24 am

Posted in Immigration, Taxes

Steve Bannon wants to raise taxes on the very rich

He has been talking about it to people. I think that Bannon wants these “leaks” to be covered by the media, because he’s losing to the globalists and the TruCons in the contest to win Trump’s favor, and he wants to get his favored policies out there. But the mainstream media is ignoring this.

I’ve been pushing for taxes on the rich for a while. I always get a lot of hate comments when I write about the topic. Maybe now that Steve Bannon also supports it, the hate comments will die down a bit.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 26, 2017 at 7:19 pm

Posted in Taxes

Libertarians are wrong about taxation

Libertarians believe that if Lazy Farmer works in his fields for 6 hours a day, and Industrious Farmer works in his fields 12 hours a day, and Industrious Farmer consequently grows twice as many crops, that it’s not fair to assign a higher tax rate to Industrious Farmer because that would punish him for his hard work in creating value.

If we still had an 18th century agrarian economy, I too would be a libertarian economist! But that’s not how our modern economy works. People aren’t rich because they put in more hours tilling the fields. They are rich because they own monopolies. They are rich because they have the right degrees, the right contacts, the right personality, to get into the high-paying career tracks. Wealth has become divorced from actual value creation. The people doing the real value-creating work, like the engineers (many of whom are from foreign countries because value-creation is work that Americans don’t want to do), are paid salaries on the high-end of middle-class but they are not wealthy.

Another libertarian talking point I see a lot is that high taxes suppress value creation because people will choose not to work. But all empirical evidence from the real economy shows this argument is bogus. The people most likely to be sitting home playing videogames are those who would have had the lowest tax rates had they been working in the labor force. Those putting in the most hours, like BIGLAW partners and investment bankers, have extremely high hourly incomes (and thus the highest tax rates). And the argument assumes that these rich people create value in the first place. There’s a case to be made that our nation would be better off if BIGLAW partners and investment bankers worked fewer hours instead of more hours.

As we move more into a post-scarcity economy, we see jobs being a luxury for the rich rather than the means to create value. Remember my blog post about Toby Milstein? She is an heiress who never needs to work a day in her life, and she lives in the Dakota, but she still has a regular job in “business development” for a tech startup, because not having a job is for the lower classes.

Libertarians say that taxation is “theft.” But as I’ve shown, REALLY rich people voted for Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump by a 3 to 1 margin. Even though it was well known that there would be higher taxes under Hillary Clinton and the Democrats. People don’t vote for theft.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 19, 2017 at 9:35 am

I’m really tired of this dumb argument

A commenter writes:

Won’t rich people find a way around estate taxes pretty easily? In fact, do we collect that much from estate taxes at their current rate, or are they just avoided?

If the tax is so easily avoidable, why are Koch Brothers and Republicans so adamant about lowering it or abolishing it?

To the extent that there are loopholes, and yes there are loopholes, it’s because Republicans refuse to close them, because they think that tax loopholes are fast ones that they pulled on the Democrats.

So once again, rich people not paying taxes goes back to Republicans who do whatever they can to lower tax rates or allow loopholes to kick into the tax code because they shamelessly agree with the Koch Brothers program to make the rich even richer than they already are.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

July 3, 2017 at 9:34 am

Posted in Taxes

Extreme disappointment in Trump’s tax plan

Read this article at the NY Times.

This is not populism, this is standard Republican huge tax cuts for the richest value transferers.

The biggest giveaways to the super rich are:

1. Eliminating the estate tax.

2. 15% “business tax,” which sounds like it opens up huge loopholes because everyone will try to change their “ordinary income” into “business income” and get a huge tax cut. Even if it doesn’t open up any loopholes (unlikely that), I don’t see why the lawyers who are partners in the law firm should pay 15% tax while their working-stiff employees making a lot less money have to pay 25% or 35% tax.

When he was campaigning, Trump said he would eliminate the carried interest loophole, but under the new Trump plan, instead of super-rich hedge fund managers paying 20% capital gains tax, their tax rate is actually LOWERED to 15% “business income” tax.

3. Top tax rate lowered 39.6 to 35%. For those who can’t figure out how to take advantage of the new “business tax” loophole. Remember that you need at least $418,401 of income to be in the 39.6% bracket, so that’s a tax cut for only the very rich.

It’s so unfortunate that we are stuck with this bozo in the White House instead of a true populist like Marine Le Pen.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

April 26, 2017 at 8:23 pm

Posted in Taxes

Trump’s taxes: boring subject

They can only be interesting in a way that’s bad for Trump: if he lied, cheated, did something illegal, etc.

Otherwise, it doesn’t matter what his tax rate was. No one is obligated to pay more taxes than they are legally required to pay, and no one does, not Democrats, not Republicans.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

March 15, 2017 at 7:29 pm

Posted in Taxes

Why do Americans love low taxes?

Andrew E. wrote in a comment: “Believe it or not, Americans like low taxes.”

Yes, I do believe it.

But, people aren’t thinking rationally about it, they are thinking with the animal parts of their brain. There’s a part that reviles at the thought of stuff being taken away from them, which is based on instincts from our caveman days when stuff was synonymous with having enough of a stockpile to survive the winter without starving to death. And there’s a part which craves status, and thinks that if only they had the money the government was taking away in taxes, they’d be able to buy the house in a “better” neighborhood or buy the stuff their friends have that they can’t afford; but what their emotions don’t realize is that if everyone gets the same tax cut, then the price of the “better” neighborhood goes up by that much and is still unaffordable, and they still can’t afford to buy the stuff their friends have because now their friends can buy more expensive stuff.

* * *

Otis writes:

American’s like low taxes for 1 reason and 1 reason only: America’s large black population.

That is literally the only reason. If it wasn’t for the knowledge that their tax money would just be going to blacks, American would have similar tax rates and a similar social safety next to Western European countries.

* * *

Chairman writes:

One entity can pool large sums of money together to invest in major projects with more efficiency than a large number of people each using their own money can. This principal explains why any large organization exists. The trick, of course, is to find a way to staff the government with intelligent and moral people whose interests are aligned with the general population’s. This is difficult but not impossible, though it’s rarely been accomplished.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 21, 2016 at 10:42 am

Posted in Taxes

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