Tag Archives: taxation

Torturing the truth: The tax cut debate vs. the English language

Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“On April 26, the Trump administration released a one-page summary of its tax reform proposals. The following morning, US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin appeared on CBS This Morning to discuss those proposals. Co-anchor Norah O’Donnell didn’t waste any time ham-handedly injecting the mainstream media’s dishonest narrative-shaping language into the conversation. ‘As you mentioned this would be historic tax cuts [sic],’ her first question began. ‘Estimated to cost the American taxpayer $7 trillion over a decade. So when will you tell us how you will pay for it?’ Unfortunately Mnuchin played along: ‘In regards to the pay for [sic], I don’t know how people can estimate the cost since we don’t haven’t released all the details, but this is going to be paid for by economic growth and by a reduction of many, many deductions in special interest.’ O’Donnell tried to put two ginormous lies over on her viewers. And Mnuchin let her get away with it.” (04/27/17)


Forget Reagan: Trump’s tax plan is more like George W. Bush

Source: Reason
by Matt Welch

“In the run-up to today’s big White House tax-reform announcement, the question among many analysts was: Would President Donald Trump’s ideas look more like Ronald Reagan in 1981 (when he and a bipartisan congressional majority cut rates) or 1986, when they simplified the code? While Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, flanked by National Economic Director Gary Cohn, bragged that the administration’s plan was both ‘the biggest tax cut’ and the ‘largest tax reform’ in U.S. history — 1981 and 1986 at the same time, only more! — the more apt and less comforting historical precedent might be the guy who Trump never tires of bashing: George W. Bush.” (04/27/17)


White House unveils dramatic plan to overhaul tax code in major test for Trump

Source: Washington Post

“President Trump on Wednesday proposed a dramatic overhaul of the tax code, calling for sharply lower rates for individuals and businesses but also eliminating key tax breaks. The proposal is a one-page outline — key details are left incomplete — but it presents an initial offer to begin negotiations with lawmakers, as White House officials think reworking the tax code is one of their biggest priorities to boost economic growth. … The central feature of the White House’s plan would be a big reduction in tax rates for virtually all Americans and businesses.” (04/26/17)


Mnuchin vows “biggest tax cut” in US history, confirms plan to slash corporate rate

Source: Fox News

“Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin confirmed Wednesday that the Trump administration aims to lower the corporate tax rate to 15 percent, saying a forthcoming proposal will constitute the ‘biggest tax cut’ for Americans in history. … Mnuchin, speaking at a Washington forum hosted by The Hill, would not reveal many specifics but confirmed that they want to lower the corporate rate to 15 percent, from 35 percent. ‘I will confirm that the business tax is going to be 15 percent,’ he said. ‘[Trump] thinks that’s absolutely critical to drive growth.’ He said small businesses would benefit from that. Mnuchin also said the administration wants to ‘do the whole thing,’ and not pursue tax reform piece by piece. Amid concerns that such sweeping tax cuts would significantly reduce revenue for the government, he suggested economic growth will help pay for [sic] the plan.” [editor’s note: Tax cuts don’t need to be “paid for” because they aren’t expenditures. They’re just not stealing as much – TLK] (04/26/17)


Americans work almost four months just to pay taxes

Source: Libertarian Institute
by Jared Labell

“Taxpayers won’t pay off this year’s local, state, and federal tax burden totaling $5.1 trillion until April 23, or as the Tax Foundation calls it, Tax Freedom Day. That day, calculated annually, represents how long Americans work to pay local, state, and federal taxes for the year. In 2017, it will take 113 days for taxpayers to pay the country’s tax burden, which includes $1.5 trillion in local and state taxes and $3.5 trillion in federal taxes, equaling 31 percent of America’s income. But that’s not all. If you include federal borrowing, which represents future taxes the government must collect to pay the bills, Tax Freedom Day would occur 14 days later this year on May 7.” (04/24/17)


CEO resigns after firm admits paying armed groups in Syria

Source: CNN Money

“The chief executive of the world’s largest cement maker will resign after the firm admitted to making payments to armed groups in Syria. Eric Olsen will step down as CEO of LafargeHolcim in July after an internal investigation found that managers at the company’s plant in Syria made indirect payments to armed groups in 2013 and 2014 in order to keep the facility open. … The Swiss-French firm opened its plant in Syria in May 2010, before political unrest and civil war consumed the country. LafargeHolcim suffered resource shortages and its staff were harassed by armed groups as the conflict intensified. It said the payments — made via middlemen — were initiated by plant managers who believed they were acting in the firm’s best interests.” [editor’s note: Nearly every company around the world does exactly the same thing, of course. It’s called “paying taxes” – TLK] (04/24/17)


Tax reform: Two places to start

Source: Garrison Center
by Thomas L Knapp

“An anonymous announcement of a forthcoming public announcement: On April 26, an anonymous White House source says, the Trump administration ‘will outline our broad principles and priorities …. We are moving forward on comprehensive tax reform that cuts tax rates for individuals, simplifies our overly-complicated system and creates jobs by making American businesses competitive.’ That sounds very nice. But given the administration’s previously revealed ‘principles and priorities,’ it’s reasonable to expect a heaping helping of economically dumb protectionist tinkering floating atop a billowing cloud of hot air. If Trump, his administration, and congressional Republicans were serious about real tax reform (they aren’t, but if they were), I’d expect to see two major initial proposals: A measure increasing the ‘personal exemption’ to the federal income tax once a year, every year, automatically, and a ‘FICA floor’ that likewise increases each year.” (04/22/17)


Should US imports be taxed to subsidize exports?

Source: National Center for Policy Analysis
by David Ranson

“The tax debate in Congress has shifted away from simply cutting taxes to restructuring the tax system. There is no shortage of reform proposals, but current initiatives in tax and trade policy are no longer pointing in the right direction.” [summary — full paper available as PDF download] (04/17)


Taxation is theft by government

Source: Eastern New Mexico News
by Kent McManigal

“Tuesday was the day sometimes called ‘Tax Day.’ It’s not exactly a holiday, and about as far from a ‘holy day’ as it’s possible to imagine. Some people get tired of libertarians pointing out that taxation is theft. Particularly those whose paychecks depend on this particular form of theft. Whatever you call it, when someone demands you hand over some of your property, threatening to hurt you in some way if you don’t comply, it’s not the act of a good person. How excited were you to pay taxes this year? Or, if you got some of your own money back, were you grateful for this ‘gift?'” (04/19/17)


Just as with Reagan, getting tax reform right today is key to booming economy

Source: Heartland Institute
by Peter Ferrara

“Milton Friedman was the first to observe that the deeper the recession, the stronger the recovery. After a recession, the economy grows faster than normal for a period until it catches up with where it should have been on the long term economic trendline. The recession Obama inherited in 2008-09 should have been followed by a booming recovery for at least a couple of years with real growth of 5% or even 6%, like President Reagan’s recovery from the steep 1981-82 recession. But Obama never produced more than 2% growth per year for his entire 8 years in office. That qualifies as the worst recovery from a recession since the Great Depression. That means there is an economic boom still hiding deep within this economy, waiting to be liberated. Reagan’s first step to restoring economic growth was to reduce tax rates sharply.” (04/18/17)