Mitt Romney’s Tax Plan is Flat but Not in the Way You’d Think

Categories: Economy, Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
Mitt Romney’s Tax Plan is Flat but Not in the Way You’d Think

Mitt Romney is betting on a boring tax plan to keep him ahead of the pack in 2012

There was a time when tax policy actually had the starring role in the 2012 Republican Presidential race.

That was before Sharon Bialek dolled up for the hungry cameras, while her attention-grubbing attorney punned lamely about “stimulus packages”, and related the tale of citizen Cain slipping a hand up her skirt and pulling her head toward his crotch.

That was also before Rick Perry fumbled the presidential pigskin once again as he let the Department of Energy slip from his addled brain with an epically infantile “Oops”.

All anyone could talk about then were Cain’s 9-9-9Read more…

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Super Committee Kicks Debate over U.S. Debt from Frying Pan into Fire

Categories: Economy, Featured, Politics
Super Committee Kicks Debate over U.S. Debt from Frying Pan into Fire

The super committee deadline draws near. Congress looks no closer to a compromise

The drama on Capital Hill ratchets up this week as the super committee nears the November 23 deadline by which time it must come up with $1.2 trillion in savings.

The latest development comes as Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey, a Republican on the super committee, offers up a GOP plan to raise $290 billion in taxes over the next ten years. That’s not a typo: a Republican senator proposes to raise taxes.

His plan cuts deductions for mortgage interest, charitable donations, and state and local taxes, targeting those who itemize deductions for a tax hike. Hardest hit will be taxpayers in the top two income brackets, thoseRead more…

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GE Paid Zero Taxes in 2010, Despite $14.2 Billion in Profits

Categories: Business, Economy, Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
GE Paid Zero Taxes in 2010, Despite $14.2 Billion in Profits

GE’s accounting and lobbying prowess exemplifies the influence of corporations over government

Jack Donaghy, the irrepressible network executive of 30 Rock played by Alec Baldwin, may have moved to Kabletown last season, but it doesn’t sound like the real General Electric is doing too bad without him, especially in light of the news last March that GE paid zero taxes in 2010.

The top corporate marginal tax rate in the United States is 35%, nominally one of the highest in the world. And yet, thanks to corporate tax loopholes, GE paid absolutely nothing in taxes for 2010, making their effective tax rate the equivalent of zero. Not only did the company not pay taxes, they earned a $3.2… Read more…

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Occupy Wall Street Could Learn a Thing or Two from Tip O’Neill

Categories: Economy, Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
Occupy Wall Street Could Learn a Thing or Two from Tip O’Neill

The right wing Tea Party protests may ultimately pack more of a punch than Occupy Wall Street

Now that Occupy Wall Street is approaching the two month benchmark (and has even survived its first snowstorm), it has become common for pundits to draw comparisons between it and the Tea Party movement. Both were born of populist anger over the recession and government bailouts of U.S. banks and both have expressed that anger through showy protests that garnered considerable media attention.

Even our esteemed Vice President, never one to leave anything to subtlety, has made the connection between the two movements. Speaking of Occupy Wall Street he said, “Look, there’s a lot in common with the Tea Party. TheRead more…

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Rick Perry Supports the Right to Choose… Your Own Federal Income Tax Rates

Categories: Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
Rick Perry Supports the Right to Choose… Your Own Federal Income Tax Rates

Rick Perry for President hits a hurdle with his optional flat tax

Locked in a competition with Herman Cain to see who can propose the most crazily unrealistic tax reform that panders to the delusions of the Republican base, Rick Perry delivered a speech in South Carolina Tuesday in which he outlined his plan for (kind of) scrapping the current tax code and offering taxpayers the choice of an optional 20% flat income tax.

At the CNN debate in Las Vegas, during which Perry seemed to awake from his stupor while Herman Cain took fire over apples and oranges, Perry promised a tax reform plan that could compete with the pizza mogul’s 9-9-9 plan. “I’ll bump plans with you brother,”… Read more…

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Kirstie Alley’s Taxes and Other Celebrity Tax Scandals

Categories: Entertainment, Featured
Kirstie Alley’s Taxes and Other Celebrity Tax Scandals

The rich and famous who’ve avoided the taxman, at their own peril

Who pays taxes and who doesn’t? It’s a question that seems to occupy our country, what with people debating President Obama’s proposed Buffet Tax and Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 plan. But if who should pay more taxes is a question up for debate, here are some people who definitely didn’t pay their fair share.

The IRS consistently goes after celebs for unpaid taxes, in the hope that they might serve as a cautionary tale to us regular folks. Celebrity travails, the theory goes, will scare us into paying our taxes. At the very least it injects a little variety into the usual tabloid fodder. The following celebrities are some… Read more…

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Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 Plan: Worth More than the Price of a Pizza?

Categories: Economy, Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 Plan: Worth More than the Price of a Pizza?

Tea Party politics buoy Herman Cain’s bid for President, but questions remain

No dearth of material has been published in recent weeks about the bad math in Herman Cain’s 9-9-9 tax plan. It would effectively scrap the current tax system and replace it with a 9% business flat tax, a 9% individual flat tax, and a 9% national sales tax. Did he steal it from Sim City? Is it the price of a pizza? The work of the devil? We can only guess.

What is pretty clear, however, is that Herman Cain’s plan would mean a significant tax increase for the roughly 30 million low-income Americans who pay neither income nor payroll taxes as… Read more…

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Let Them Eat Cake

Categories: Featured, World
Let Them Eat Cake

After Denmark’s fat tax, many Americans are wondering, “Should we have a fat tax?”

The taxosphere is all abuzz with the news that the government of Denmark recently imposed a so-called ‘fat tax’ on its citizens in an attempt to discourage Danes from consuming fatty foods.

The fat tax increases the price of any food containing more than 2.3% saturated fats by 16 kroner ($2.90) per kilo (2.2lbs). To give you an idea of what kind of real effect the fat tax will have, it will increase the price of a burger by about $0.15 and a small package of butter by about $0.40.

Contrary to what many people assume, the fat tax was not put in place… Read more…

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There Ain’t No Such Thing as a Free Checking Account

Categories: Business, Featured, Personal Finance
There Ain’t No Such Thing as a Free Checking Account

Free checking ends as banks up fees in response to new federal regulation

Hey there Rascals, here’s a piece of financial news that’s not strictly tax related but definitely relevant for anyone with a checking account. According to this article in USA Today, about ⅔ of major banks are ending free checking. This is a move that’s been looming on the horizon for about a year now, but the banks are finally making good on their threats.

Here are some numbers for you on the rapid demise of the free checking account: Only 45% of non-interest checking accounts are still free, as opposed to 65% last year and 76% in 2009. And now the average monthly non-interest checking… Read more…

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His Very Own Cross of Gold

Categories: Economy, Featured, Politics, Tax Policy
His Very Own Cross of Gold

Obama’s new deficit plan is as high on populist rhetoric as it is on taxes

The conservative’s dilemma

The American conservative has reached a certain crisis of conscience. With the American economy caught between a rock and a hard place, he must sail cautiously the dangerous waters of economic stalemate and double-dip recession fears, charting a delicate course between two equal and opposite dangers.

On the one side stands taxes, to which he is ideologically opposed, not so much because he objects to funding the government, but because he believes the government’s role should be a small one and because he fears the money, which he could put to work, will just be wasted. On the other side of the… Read more…

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