Income Security for the 1%.

By: Wednesday April 10, 2013 11:40 am

The 2014 Budget does not go far enough to tax the 1%.

“Mr. Obama would raise an estimated $580 billion in new revenues over a decade mainly through two ways. For the fifth time he is proposing that affluent taxpayers in higher tax brackets must limit their deductions to the 28 percent rate; while Congress has annually ignored that idea, there are signs of growing support as lawmakers seek new ways to reduce deficits. The second change would impose his so-called Buffett Rule, requiring that people with annual taxable income above $1 million pay at least 30 percent in income taxes.”—-NYTimes.


Wind Energy’s Boom and Bust Cycles

By: Thursday October 18, 2012 2:15 pm

Tim McDonnell has a good, depressing piece on the wind power industry scrambling to extend the production tax credit, and the carnage that will face the industry if they fail. This has been turned into an electoral issue because of the prominence of the industry in swing states like Iowa and Colorado, and because Mitt Romney has taken a rare stand against the tax credit, in contrast to the Obama Administration’s desire for an extension. But I think the more important thing to stress here is how our industrial policy, as it were, particularly on energy, is so detrimental.

A Study of Mitt Romney’s Six Studies Validating His Tax Plan

By: Monday October 15, 2012 8:12 am

Mitt Romney surrogate Ed Gillespie was batted around by the unlikely source of Chris Wallace yesterday, when discussing the Romney tax plan. The talking point the Romney team has been throwing around is that “six studies” validate the claim that you can lower tax rates by 20%, remain revenue neutral, and not lower the share of the tax burden on the rich. “Share of the tax burden” is a weasel phrase that has more to do with the overall share of compensation going to the rich, but in some contexts Romney has said that he wouldn’t lower taxes for the rich, so we can read it that way.

This is all mathematically impossible, actual “studies” prove. But Gillespie and the surrogates have relied on the big-sounding “six studies” for their proof.

New Joint Committee on Taxation Study Shows Futility of Base-Broadening to Pay for Massive Tax Rate Cuts

By: Saturday October 13, 2012 7:52 am

As long as the only thing we’re going to talk about for the next few weeks in the election is taxes, I might as well provide the update. The Joint Committee on Taxation, the “CBO for taxes” as it were, the nonpartisan scorekeeper on tax policy, just released a report that should end all discussion about the Romney campaign’s plans for a deficit-neutral 20% across-the-board rate cut.

Schumer Rejects Base-Broadening Tax Reform, But Proposes “Entitlement Reform” as an Enticement for GOP

By: Tuesday October 9, 2012 12:10 pm

Chuck Schumer, the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate and basically the avatar of the Democratic messaging operation, just gave a speech to the National Press Club about the expectations for tax policy in the lame duck session. And he basically rejected the emerging bipartisan approach to lower tax rates and “broaden the base” by closing loopholes.

Ryan Again Evades Specifics on Mathematically Impossible Tax Plan

By: Tuesday October 2, 2012 4:15 pm

The fallout continues from Paul Ryan’s hand waving on specifics for the Romney-Ryan tax package he and Mitt Romney are running. A woman at a town hall event in Iowa pressed him for specifics, and Ryan again basically demurred. He said how hard it would be to deliver the math in the confines of a broadcast television format, then spent 5 minutes or so offering the woman no specifics on what precise tax expenditures he and Romney would be willing to eliminate to reach the goal of reducing tax rates by 20% while not lowering the tax burden on the rich and not collecting any less in total revenue.

Coburn Comes Out Against Tax Exemption for Olympic Medalists

By: Wednesday August 8, 2012 5:30 pm

Following up on an earlier item, the good news is that we’ve found one lawmaker in Washington who thinks that exempting Olympians from paying taxes on a cash award is a bad idea. The striking news is that this lawmaker is Tom Coburn.

Fiscal Slope Stories: Defense Industry Propaganda and the Dangers of “Tax Reform”

By: Tuesday June 26, 2012 7:08 am

Pressure for “tax reform” from self-interested business groups will unquestionably lead to a bad outcome. Jared Bernstein points to a paper from his colleagues at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, which warns of the dangers of putting the cart before the horse in the name of tax reform

Politicians Love a Complex Tax Code

By: Thursday January 26, 2012 1:15 pm

I’ve noticed this tension among politicians for a while. On the one hand, they want to say that they favor a “simpler” tax code, and they like to talk about how many thousands of pages the tax code is, and how byzantine it is to understand, etc. At the same time, they boast about all the goodies they give out to this or that business or individual using the tax code, which of course only makes it more complex.

Possible Explanations for Republicans Not Taking Sweetheart Debt Limit Deal

By: Tuesday July 5, 2011 5:20 pm

We know that Republicans are, to this point, looking a gift horse in the mouth by not yet taking an extremely favorable deal on the debt limit that would transform government and usher in radical austerity in exchange for a few measly closures of tax loopholes. It could be that they’re simply being tough negotiators by holding out until, they expect, Democrats just fold on everything. That’s certainly a possibility. But there are some other options …

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