So What’s the Real Word on Taxes?

Like most things, it’s safe to say that the tax reform bill passed in December has both good and bad aspects of it.

During the debate on the bill, most of the opposition argued that it was a tax cut for the rich at the expense of the lower and middle classes.  But that’s too easy.  That argument is used when any tax bill that includes cuts is debated and the reaction this time, and this time it appears to be out of habit.  And this time it’s just not that clear cut.  So let’s dismiss that and look closer at the actual provisions of the law… Continue reading “So What’s the Real Word on Taxes?”

The Real Problem with ‘Sanctuary’ Cities and States

On January 1, California declared itself a ‘sanctuary state’, refusing to cooperate with federal law enforcement on enforcement of immigration laws.

Also this month the state of Washington, whose governor had earlier issued an executive order making that state a ‘sanctuary state’ to keep from enforcing “mean-spirited policies”, filed charges against Motel 6 accusing it of cooperating with federal immigration officials. Continue reading “The Real Problem with ‘Sanctuary’ Cities and States”

News of the Weird

Marianna Flores, a student at U of California-San Diego, is suing the university.

Flores was protesting with a group blocking a major highway in the San Diego area. While blocking the highway, she was injured when she was hit by a car. And so she is suing the university for not keeping her from protesting in the highway.

And, yes, there is a lawyer that has actually taken the case.

Friday Quick Takes–It’s Taxing

End of the week quick takes focus on comments about the recently passed tax plan.  Some different perspectives and…interesting opinions in this edition…

Do What I Say, Not What I Do

Former Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, who served during the Obama Administration, said that the recent tax bill was a ‘ticking time bomb’ because of the large increase in the national debt that will result.

That is a very legitimate concern and the largest drawback to law Over 10 years, even if optimistic estimates of increased economic growth play out, the debt will increase by hundreds of billions of dollars (the initial estimate by the CBO is $1.5 trillion). At some point, that will have to be addressed.

However, it’s ironic and strangely odd that this concern would come from the Treasury Secretary who helped form economic policy during an Administration where the national debt doubled, rising roughly $10 trillion, in 8 years.

But That’s My Money!

New York governor Andrew Cuomo said earlier this week that the recently passed tax reform bill was bad, in part, because it unfairly penalized high tax states by limiting the deduction for state taxes to $10,000. Well, yes, yes it does.

Or said another way, others will no longer be subsidizing people from high tax states by allowing them to pay less in federal taxes.

There is, of course, one obvious solution: stop having such high taxes.

 

That is just too much to consider for Cuomo.  So he has announced that he is having the state of New York sue the federal government in an attempt to invalidate the law, saying its unconstitutional.   Unconstitutional?  How is that, you may ask.  Good question, but that has sort of become ‘the thing’ to do when you disagree with a law may threaten to not give you as much money as you have started to feel entitled to getting.

So, we have one government suing another government, taking up a courts time and resources because…well, because it’s so important to settle the question of who gets more of the taxpayer’s money.

New Year, Same North Korea…Or Can It Change?

The leader of the kingdom of North Korea, Kim Jong Un, brought in the new year by announcing in a new year’s televised address that “The United States should know that the button for nuclear weapons is on my table.”

So 2018 starts with the Trump Administration facing same problem that previous administrations have faced regarding the nuclear ambitions of the rogue North Korean regime.  Continue reading “New Year, Same North Korea…Or Can It Change?”