Tax Reform Under Trump 2017


#1048

I was busy yesterday so the discussion has passed this by a bit, but I do appreciate your response and I wanted to hit a couple of things quickly (in addition to what others have already responded to):

I am probably a bit to the right of where you think I am, though definitely to the left of yourself. I believe that, in general, there should be a compelling reason if we are going to do something through government instead of through markets. The classic (traditionally right-leaning!) economic literature calls out most of the places where markets tend to fail and where regulation or intervention would be appropriate: externalities, natural monopolies, and other situations where supply/demand on their own do not lead to the value-maximizing result.

In many of the situations you’re describing, the government does a poor (or inefficient, really) job… and getting them out entirely would only make things worse. To me that’s an argument for finding a better way to do it, rather than to not do it at all. Or the classic fiscal conservative question of, “does the government really need to do this, and if so, is there a better or more efficient way?” We have some good threads about that question here, but in Congress it’s just about burning it all down.

I do not believe that this is true; or more to the point, I believe this is true for me and my (proverbial) children, and is probably true for you and your children, but it is not true for a substantial portion (maybe even majority) of Americans. A wide-ranging group that includes constituencies of both parties is facing less opportunity than their parents’ generation, and the likelihood that their children will have even less. This opportunity will be narrowed further by the several attacks this tax bill takes at the education system (school supply deduction, pressure on the state/local taxes that fund schools, tuition deduction, graduate education deduction). Further still by deficit increases so that later generations will have higher taxes, fewer services, or both as a result. Crippling the tools that would allow the non-elite to realize opportunity and potential.


#1049

What an asshole.

Hey, Chuck, would you say those people are… deplorable? Would you say they are clinging to their booze, women, and movies? Would you say those people make up… say, 47% of Americans?

To just come out and say that anyone who isn’t in the investor class (i.e. all the people in this country who do all the actual work) is a useless drug addict is… I don’t even know. How this guy doesn’t immediately get recalled is a mystery to me.

Also, let’s just let the incredible misogyny of that comment sink in.


#1050

Billionaires already own farms as tax dodges (though they normally call them ranches.)


#1051

The state I grew up in unfortunately doesn’t send the very best to Congress. I mean it is pretty bad when you would have to say Grassley isn’t the worst serving member in the Iowa Delegation (Hi Rep. Steve King!). Sometimes I think it would be nice to move back to Cedar Rapids, since I work remotely and can live pretty much wherever. Then I think about living in a state where they elect folks like Grassley and King, and think I don’t want to live around assholes like that (Of course living someplace like Cedar Rapids or Iowa City I would be subjected to it far less than in smaller towns).


#1052

It doesn’t take into account, the changes in itemized deduction that are there between the existing law and the new proposed bill. So the comparisons are not correct (even when you assume that the math is correct).

For true comparison, you should try your normal itemized deductions first, and note down the 2016 existing law federal tax withholding amount. Then go with the new deduction (property tax can be deducted in both house and senate bills, but mortgage deductions have to be reconciled), and I’d just put 0 there and take the standard deduction and note the federal withholding amount.

In my case, I’ll pay $1200 more in house version, and will be about even in the senate one.


#1053



The Republicans want you to see only the top-left.

Hmm - not sure how to make that format to see the whole chart - you see the rest if you click on the image.


#1054

I generally find the Wonkblong to be ok. But their methodology in this article absolutely sucks, or at least their presentation.

When trying to compare things across 50 years. You do not display the result using actual dollars because of inflation.
Somebody making $10K in 1971 during Nixon tax cuts is equivalent to making $62,000 today due to inflation. So of course the bars are going to heavily weighted toward the lower end of the scale in the earlier tax cuts.
You show the result in quintile like the Tax Policy Center, and if you want to make a political point like TPC does they show the top 10% top 1% and top .1%

It’s also important to show current share of the tax burden for each group,which WaPo doesn’t do.
The TPC showed the lowest quintile tax burden decreased by a tiny .1% The 2nd lowest was flat. The middle quintile tax burden increase by .6% the 2nd quintile increased by 1.2 and the top quintile saw decrease of 1.7% in the tax burden. So, I don’t disagree with WaPo saying it is regressive


#1055

Maybe, but the reality is that farmland is just a money pit if you aren’t working it. So they’d have to hire people to work said land. You could even throw in a point about having to plant a certain percentage of the land to avoid someone just buying real estate and tossing up a 5x5 plot and planting potatoes and calling it a farm.

Basically, I’m saying if family farms were ever an issue, they could very easily work around it. But it was never the issue. It was the excuse and always has been. Only like 65 farms in the entire nation would be affected by the estate tax.


#1056

Don’t know how much truth there is to this article, but it would be funny if true.


#1057

You can not work land and declare it farmland. It’s something Stan Kroenke does as a dodge when he buys land to develop. Until he’s ready to develop, he classifies it as farmland to pay a lower tax rate. Just more billionaire bullshit.


#1058

The top quintile, though, covers such a broad range of yearly income that it’s close to meaningless. I mean what’s the lower end there these days? A couple of hundred grand yearly, gross, for the proverbial “family of four?” Those people are probably working corporate jobs and getting a W-2. They’re not in the same league as people bringing in a couple million a year and up or more, and yet the latter are included in the top quintile. That’s why you have to break out the top 10%, the top 5%, the top 1% and the top 0.1%, to get a better idea of what’s actually going on with the income distribution. The problem is, the higher you go up the line in the graph with the ever steeper slope, the data gets very hard to ascertain because those people don’t live the same reality as most everyone else. They report their income to the government for tax purposes, but the government often has to take that reporting on faith.


#1059

Lol, freedom caucus possibly derailing the tax bill right now


#1060

Well, they’re derailing the motion to conference committee.

That means they may just accept the senate bill as written.


#1061

#1062

I am aware of a case locally where a developer bought land and planted almond trees on it, with the idea of later building homes on the property.

Interestingly enough it is land that was once supposed to be a Jack Nicklaus Golf Course and that Trump tried to buy (or get the city to buy and deed to him) years ago so he could finish the course and build homes.


#1063

#1064

Does that mean they can’t agree on their varied versions of the bill?


#1065

Hope springs eternal!


#1066

Something everyone is leaving out of their “how much will you save in taxes under the Senate bill,” calculations is how much their insurance will go up as a result of repealing the individual mandate. Even with things as they stand now, I take a pay cut every year because the rising costs of my benefits outstrip my rising wages. If the markets collapse we could be looking at hikes of 20% by some estimates I’ve heard.

The Republicans would respond by saying that healthcare is a choice. We could choose to go without it or (if healthy) we could choose to gamble with a plan that has shitty coverage and high out of pocket expenses but, as someone whose son was in a near fatal car crash, I know that’s a terrible fucking idea. Insurance is just what it says it is – A bet to protect you against unforeseen expenses.


#1067

If you weren’t spending all your money on booze and whores then you’d have plenty of money for healthcare. Or just dip into the trust fund your wealthy parents left you - doesn’t everyone have an inheritance to rely on?