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.

Friday Quick Takes

News of note from the last week, from Thinking Man’s Politics…

Palestinian ‘Days of Rage’

Yesterday, President Trump announced that the US was moving its Israel embassy to Jerusalem after declaring that Jerusalem was the capital of Israel. Hamas and other Palestinian groups announced that they would hold “three days of rage” in protest.

Hamas has declared that their goal is the elimination of Israel as a nation and dedicated itself to the killing of Jews. Tell me how again the ‘three days of rage” are going to be different than any other day?

Penalties for Defrauding Customers–Wells Fargo

President Trump took to Twitter today to knock down rumors that US consumer finance agency was reviewing fines levied against Wells Fargo for abuse of mortgage lending laws and opening bogus accounts.

In his tweet, the President said “I will cut regs but make penalties severe when caught cheating!”

Wells Fargo had been found to, among other things, reward its employees for new accounts which resulted in thousands of new accounts being opened by employees in customer’s names but without customer’s knowledge.

When large companies and their leaders have no consequence for their actions, then those actions are repeated (see bank bailouts).  Wells Fargo should not only pay but so should the leadership that knowingly defrauded their customers.

Finally, the Powerful Held Accountable

Former US Representative Corrine Brown was sentenced to five years in prison this week for multiple counts of fraud after setting up a charity to provide education for low income children and then using it as a personal slush fund.

Brown, who has faced ethics charges throughout her career, represented one of the poorest districts in Florida. Yet somehow she had no problem stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her low income constituents to fund her vacations and lavish lifestyle.

The Bible and almost every major religion comments on rich people who take from the poor. May Corrine Brown feel the weight of her actions.

We Can’t Figure Out Birth Certificates?

A judge in Arkansas today said the state could no longer issue birth certificates until the state and same sex couples worked out an agreement on how to conform to Supreme Court rulings.

I’m sure that I don’t get all the nuances of this particular case and I’m sure somehow it involves who is a ‘husband and wife’, but how have we gotten to the place that even issuing a birth certificate is controversial? It just can’t be that hard. No matter what the ‘PC police’ say, you can’t change basic biology and a birth still requires two people of opposite sex.

Weekend Follies

And now these (mildly) funny tidbits to end the weekend…

Let’s Fight While We Talk

Berkeley, CA has long been known as a bastion of far left liberalism and, most recently, of violence to silence speakers who do not line up with the politically correct agenda.

As a way to try to bridge the gap between left and right, organizers set up a tent which would be a place where those of the left and those of the right could come together for a dialog, to talk about differences in a non-threatening way.

Continue reading “Weekend Follies”

Midweek Quick Takes

News of note from the last week, from Thinking Man’s Politics…

The Anti-Intellectualism in Academia (continued)

An instructor at the University of Pennsylvania has announced a way she has a way to battle the ills of the world, or at least her little corner of it.

Stephanie McKellop seeks “social justice” in her classroom.   And by that she doesn’t mean as Martin Luther King did, where people are “…judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”   She means that it’s time for payback.

In her own little way in her government, taxpayer funded job, the self-described “queer disabled feminist” announced on Twitter how she is going to get even.  She has decided to ignore white males in her class, as much as she can.  Only if there are no women, minorities or others to call on in class will she call on any white male.

And From Collegiate Athletics…You Can Protest the Anthem, As Long As the Protest Isn’t In Favor

The College of the Ozarks has hosted the men’s Division II college basketball tournament for the last 18 years.  That will change this season.

The NAIA, the governing body for the roughly 250 schools, has decided it will pull the tournament from the school this year because the school has said it requires its student athletes and those of schools participating at their facilities to stand for the national anthem.   The NAIA said that this was too much to ask, and rather than require students to stand it will move the tournament to a new venue.

Aside from anything we may say on this specific topic, one can’t help but notice another example of the ‘tolerant’ being tolerant of anyone except those who disagree.  The College of the Ozarks decided that their choice was to take a stand (no pun intended) on this topic but the NAIA finds that a school making this choice can’t be tolerated and will pull the tournament and associated economic impact from the Branson, MO school.

 

News of the Weird and More…

As if politics and ‘weird’ aren’t almost synonymous anyway, we bring you this…along with Hillary’s latest comments on patriotism and more quick takes…

News of the Weird

And finally this, which many people may have already suspected about members of Congress… Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera announced she will be a candidate for Congress to replace retiring Republican Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.  And she does have experience that sets her apart from other candidates for the seat in Congress.   Continue reading “News of the Weird and More…”