Category Archives: Internal Revenue Service

Trump’s tax plan benefits — Trump. Surprised?

Now we know what Donald Trump, the presidential candidate who won’t release his own tax returns, wants to do about taxes: Cut them for people like himself.

His August speech in Detroit outlined his plans, which fall in line with what House Republicans, including zombie-eyed granny-starver Paul Ryan (thanks to Esquire’s Charles P. Pierce )have been promoting. Just three features to highlight:

Cut taxes to boost the after-tax income of middle-income families in the 40th to 60th percentile by 0.2% .

–Give the top 1% an after-tax boost more than 20 times larger–5.3%. Of course, in dollar amounts the tax breaks to the top 1% would dwarf what middle-class Americans receive.

–Eliminate the estate tax.

Let me be clear about the estate tax: You, dear reader, probably have nothing to fear from the estate tax. As The New York Times points out,the estate tax doesn’t even apply to 99.8% of all estates–only to those worth more than $5.4 million for an individual. With a modicum of planning, married couples get an exclusion of $10.9 million.

Think about that for a minute. $10.9 million. Do you think you know anyone who is going to be subject to the estate tax?

Wait. I know someone: Donald Trump. Trump’s tax plan is a tax plan for Trump. What a surprise.

IRS excels at beaurocratese when it screws up

If you sent in an employment tax payment at the April 18 deadline, you did what you were supposed to.  But the IRS sent out notices to many filers that the deposits were late. How did the IRS characterize its own screw-up?  Like this: “Many taxpayers who made employment tax deposits on Monday, April 18,… Continue Reading

Don’t believe everything you read about the tax code — even in the New York Times

Reporting in 2014 on a proposed tax overhaul that went nowhere, The New York Times  referred to “the 70,000-page federal tax code.” People, I come bearing good holiday tidings:  The federal tax code is nowhere near that long. As Andrew L. Grossman, an attorney with the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, points out in Slate,… Continue Reading

Republican fantasy tax plans all “puppies and rainbows”

Let me paraphrase Josh Barro of The New York Times in summing up the tax talk you’re hearing in the Republican Presidential Debates: It’s all puppies and rainbows. As Barro points out here, Marco Rubio would eliminate all taxes on capital gains, which of course would benefit those in the U.S. who have accumulated the most… Continue Reading