December 21, 2017

Oh, come on. I'm sure it's possible. And now I feel challenged. The GOP tax bill is going to kill us all!

I'm reading the NYT headline: "You Cannot Be Too Cynical About the Republican Tax Bill."

The most cynical thing I actually think is that the GOP benefited itself by shifting a big burden onto taxpayers in the high-taxing blue states while channeling a generous new advantage to the taxpayers in red states.

The above-linked column (by Thomas Edsall) quotes an unnamed "tax expert" on this subject:
Restriction on state and C local tax deduction — consciously vindictive imposition of double taxation on citizens of certain Democratic states; corporations and pass through businesses, the darlings of the Republicans, still get to deduct those very same taxes in full.
I don't know what the "C" in "state and C local tax deduction" is supposed to mean. Some editing glitch, I'm guessing.

Anyway, I don't think it was so much "consciously vindictive" as it was consciously convenient. Why not burden people who weren't going to vote for you anyway? There was a tax benefit — the state and local deduction — that helped taxpayers in high-taxing/Democratic-voting states and was unavailable to people in lower-taxing/GOP-voting states. The people in the GOP-voting states were providing a higher proportion of the money that went to the federal government, even as these GOP-voting people tend to support less federal spending than the Democratic-voting people who were supplying less of the federal money. I can understand the GOP wanting to rebalance that out of a combination of fairness and their own political advantage.

I don't really see calling it "vindictive." That really is too cynical. And I'm saying that as someone who believes I will pay a lot more federal tax because of this change.

IN THE COMMENTS: Eleanor eloquently explains why it's fair and not vindictive:
What the tax package does is remove the "discount" feature of the relationship between federal and state and local taxes. We won't be able to vote to spend money locally with the idea the price will be discounted by a reduction in our federal taxes. If a local project is going to add $300 to a property tax bill, then it's going to cost the full $300. I don't see any unfairness in this at all. The rules are the same in all 50 states. If we want something, we should pay for it and not expect people outside the service area of the project to subsidize it. We all benefit from military bases and farm subsidies. Federal money going into states that provide national security or feed the nation is in everybody's self-interest. Why should someone in Nebraska subsidize bus service expansion in Boston?

190 comments:

KittyM said...

"Why not burden people who weren't going to vote for you anyway?"

That is the very definition of cynical policy-making. The government in a democracy should have the goal, as far as possible, of improving the lives of all its citizens, not just the ones who voted for it.

David Begley said...

Ann:

It wasn’t cynical. It was cunning hardball politics by the GOP. It puts pressure on Dem politicians in high tax states. It will also mean the Exodus from high tax states continues. Hello Nebraska!

At worst, it isolates and contains the Dems to a few high tax states.

David Begley said...

Better stated: What Would Machiavelli Do? This.

Tim at large said...

Blue states lost their “double standards” deduction. They no longer get to deduct their love of high taxes on their Federal return.

FleetUSA said...

Hence, more retirees will be thinking of moving to less taxing states.

The objective still is simplification, i.e. doing away with itemizing deductions. The $24,000 standard deduction goes a long way to that goal and helps the majority of workers in even high tax states. Maybe they'll start voting Republican? Dreaming?

Henry said...

You want triple taxation? Move to NYC. Quadruple taxation even, counting sales tax.

Michael K said...

Poor Kitty. She votes for the Dims who refuse to even meet with Trump.

This is how you get more Trump AND more taxes.

There is no "double taxation." It was an exemption that is now gone.

Just think if Democrats actually cared about the middle class and negotiated.

Tim at large said...

That is the very definition of cynical policy-making. The government in a democracy should have the goal, as far as possible, of improving the lives of all its citizens, not just the ones who voted for it.

I’m sorry, is there some reason that the mostly poorer red states should be subsidizing wealthy Californians? Just like the US having the highest corporate tax rates in the developed world was subsidizing, Europe, China, and the Asian Tigers at the expense of the US. Just listen to them grouse about the tax cuts! This bill puts an end to sucking money out of red states to give it to blue states.

Who is more cynical?

David Begley said...

Althouse has written that she and Meade pay $17,000 in real estate taxes on their house. Now only $10,000 will be deductible.

1. Do nothing.
2. Pressure and complain to local pols.
3. Move to another state.

I also note that 529 plans are now available for high schools. Big trouble for failing public high schools.

FleetUSA said...

Just read an article in the Investors Business Journal. They quote the Tax Policy Center (left leaning) which says the top 0.1% of taxpayers will face an average tax increase of $387,610.

I don't know how they can be so precise, but obviously a lot of big money earners on both coasts will be paying much more.

jk said...

Cynical? Hardly. It simply rights a wrong that forced workers in flyover states to subsidize the high tax lifestyles of governments on the coasts.

Tim at large said...

Next Trump needs to start moving the bureaucracy out of the DC area.

iowan2 said...

Yes,the double standard. Why do millionaires get a better deduction than those that choose to live in low tax states? Just like child care. I cant get thousand of $'s tax relief, I dont have kids. Thats not fair. Or, my 4 grandkids, who's parents have chosen one of them to stay home and raise the kids, They get reall abused. By a cynical Dem tax scam that buys votes with child care money for those that choose to have the govt rear their children

Rae said...

Shouldn't blue staters be proud of paying higher taxes? I mean, according to their pundits only the government has the wisdom to redistribute money fairly. Their taxes should be something like 90%. Or 110%. Slackers.

DanTheMan said...

If you live in California, you get to pay Federal income tax, and you get to pay California income tax.
Yes, that is double taxation. But it's *California* that's double taxing you. Not the Feds.

iowan2 said...

I am surprised that President Trump hasnt taken advantage of remote work technologies and move some of the deep state traitors to New Mexico or central Mississippi.

Tim at large said...

I would really like to hear KittyM explain why the argument that the existing policies move money from red states to blue is wrong. Or why it shouldn’t be corrected.

I am sure the response will be that old study that said that red states get more money from the Federal Govt than blue states. But I have never seen that broken down. I don’t think there was very much detail in that study, and it was rather heavy on assumptions. But hey! Maybe I am wrong!

Tim at large said...

I cant get thousand of $’s tax relief, I dont have kids.

The older you get, the more you will benefit from other people having kids, kids who grew up to be nurses, for example.

Quaestor said...

Life expectancy declines for the second straight year.

An odd statistic for a nation dominated by the "Affordable Healthcare Act".

David Begley said...

I should add that the $10,000 limitation includes income and property taxes. Nebraska taxes motor vehicles as personal property.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

I find it impossible not to be cynical about anything printed in the NYT.

traditionalguy said...

That damn Trump must hate the Wall Street rich guys a lot.His winning ways are pushing the DOW, that was @6000 in 2009, up to 24000 and rising. But the abused guys will also have to sell a few shares of stock to pay Federal Income Tax or move to their vacation mansion in West Palm Beach.

Tim at large said...

I have been looking into the whole “Red State Welfare Queens” idea, it turns out that it’s not actually the Republicans in those states getting all of the aid, it’s Democrats in Red States:

Type of Benefit Received Percent Voting Democrat Percent Voting Republican
Public Housing 81% 12%

Medicaid 74% 16%

Food Stamps 67% 20%

Unemployment Compensation 66% 21%

Disability (from Govt.) 64% 25%

Welfare/Public Assistance 63% 22%

BamaBadgOR said...

This is not the last of the federal tax cuts. As rates go lower, deductions become less valuable. Wait for postcard tax returns and even more hysteria from the high tax blue states.

We are about to see a business and jobs boom the likes of which only my fellow oldsters remember.

Quaestor said...

Next Trump needs to start moving the bureaucracy out of the DC area.

The wealthiest counties in the United States border on DC. I invite you to visit Leesburg, VA, the quintessential GS-15 bedroom community. The place is full of restaurants, art galleries, aromatherapists, and trendy boutiques hosting brands like Prada and Hermes. But no auto parts stores. Nobody in Leesburg repairs his own car. I doubt one in ten residents even know which end of his car contains the engine.

Share the wealth! It's long overdue. For starters, move Treasury to Mississippi and Commerce to Indiana.

Hagar said...

I will quit complaining about the measly $1,000+ real estate tax I pay for my 1,200 sq. ft. palace.
I don't think I could afford to live in Madison, WI; not as an independent person, anyway.

Robert Cook said...

"Life expectancy declines for the second straight year.

"An odd statistic for a nation dominated by the 'Affordable Healthcare Act'".


Not really, as the ACA serves the insurance companies more than the people who need health insurance. Obama served up a Republican plan and the Obama-haters thought he was a communist! What dopes!(That said, for those who can only get insurance through the ACA, it's better than nothing.)

We need universal healthcare. We will get better outcomes for lower cost, as other countries do.

Tim at large said...

Yeah, Q. I drive 95 north and south every year. As you approach DC, you can see the huge federal spending in the DC area, which trails off again as you leave it behind. The US was never supposed to be like France, where money was drawn from the provinces, and spent in Paris, for example. These are the kinds of capitals you get when the state is king.

Eleanor said...

What the tax package does is remove the "discount" feature of the relationship between federal and state and local taxes. We won't be able to vote to spend money locally with the idea the price will be discounted by a reduction in our federal taxes. If a local project is going to add $300 to a property tax bill, then it's going to cost the full $300. I don't see any unfairness in this at all. The rules are the same in all 50 states. If we want something, we should pay for it and not expect people outside the service area of the project to subsidize it. We all benefit from military bases and farm subsidies. Federal money going into states that provide national security or feed the nation is in everybody's self-interest. Why should someone in Nebraska subsidize bus service expansion in Boston?

Bay Area Guy said...

With respect to the subject NY Times article, I offer 4 words: Lost.In.The.Weeds

In political life, whenever Leftwingers are wailing and gnashing their teeth about something, usually it means that something is curtailing their power and influence. Generally speaking, this, of course, is a good thing for the rest of humanity.

Jason said...

"Obama served up a Republican plan."

The biggest fucking lie in politics.

Michael K said...

"We will get better outcomes for lower cost, as other countries do."

Like the NHS. Where waiting times are the worst in seven years.

Go for it, Cookie !

gspencer said...

To all liberals greatly concerned about reducing the public debt caused by excessive government, you can write a check payable to the Bureau of the Fiscal Service, and, in the memo section, notate that it's a gift to reduce the debt held by the public. Mail your check to:

Attn Dept G
Bureau of the Fiscal Service
P. O. Box 2188
Parkersburg, WV 26106-2188

Jason said...

I mean, JFC, that's right up there on the stupid scale with "real communism has never even been tried."

Just feck off with that garbage.

Tim at large said...

We need universal healthcare. We will get better outcomes for lower cost, as other countries do.

Are you willing to impose the kinds of massively regressive taxes that can produce the needed money, Cookie? Sorry, but the “rich” just don’t have enough. Single-payer in the US could burn through Gates and Bezos entire fortunes in pretty short order. Canada does it with regressive taxes that are more predictable. Wall Street has a down year, funding dries up? Doesn’t work.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Leftwing progressive democratic socialists love big taxes. PAY THEM.

Bruce Hayden said...

If you think about it carefully, a tax deduction for state and local taxes is a subsidization of those taxes. If, say, you make $250k, the amount of federal taxes you have to pay depends on where you live. If you live in NY, NJ, CA, you are going to owe less federal income taxes than if you lived in, say, TX or WA. Why is that fair? Why shouldn't the NY resident earning that much pay as much as the TX resident? The biggest difference between the two is that NY residents have repeatedly voted for bad, wasteful, government, contrasted to citizens in low cost states. Why should the rest of us be subsidizing this bad behavior by giving them a larger tax break for those higher taxes? And this also means that low tax states indirectly subsidized high states through letting high tax state taxpayers pay less federal income taxes, as contrasted with low cost state taxpayers.

I also don't feel much compassion here because the Dems, under orders from their high tax state and city leadership (Schumer from NYC and Pelosi from San Francisco), in lockstep, refused to deal with Trump and the Republicans on drafting a tax package. They voluntarily walked away from the table, letting the Republicans still at the table find revenue in a place that would harm their constituents the least. It does little good for them to squeal like stuck pigs after the fact, after having walked away from the table.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Obama served up a Republican plan and the Obama-haters thought he was a communist! What dopes!


Cookie - that BS doesn't sell here. The GOP had nothing to do with the Democratic socialist plan to destroy healthcare. You do recall they were told to shove off and not a single member on the GOP side voted for the crap sandwich.

Obama and the democrats love to confiscate tax payer money and hand it to the big boys. *wink* all while they vilify the big boys. Much like what you are doing. Don't be a hivemind.

Hagar said...

Cookie,
It is said that in poker, if you look around the table and can't tell who the mark is, the mark is you.

Expat(ish) said...

I fear the unintended consequence will be tax migrants turning nice Red states Purple (ex: Colorado) or Blue (ex: FL). In the long term.

OTOH, perhaps their few children will intermarry and the low-tax gene will be dominant.

-XC

Curious George said...

AA: "I don't know what the "C" in "state and C local tax deduction" is supposed to mean. Some editing glitch, I'm guessing."

City.

AA: "Anyway, I don't think it was so much "consciously vindictive" as it was consciously convenient. Why not burden people who weren't going to vote for you anyway? There was a tax benefit — the state and local deduction — that helped taxpayers in high-taxing/Democratic-voting states and was unavailable to people in lower-taxing/GOP-voting states. The people in the GOP-voting states were providing a higher proportion of the money that went to the federal government, even as these GOP-voting people tend to support less federal spending than the Democratic-voting people who were supplying less of the federal money. I can understand the GOP wanting to rebalance that out of a combination of fairness and their own political advantage.'

Now you know how all of us Wiscos outside of Madison/Dane feel about all our tax money going to your market paying for state, and you got it, university jobs.

Robert Cook said...

"Cookie - that BS doesn't sell here. The GOP had nothing to do with the Democratic socialist plan to destroy healthcare. You do recall they were told to shove off and not a single member on the GOP side voted for the crap sandwich."

That's because it was Obama selling it! They were simply stamping their feet in a collective hissy fit. If Mitt Romney had been president, they would have clamored for it, calling it the triumphant implementation on a national scale of the plan implemented in Massachusetts when he was governor there.

Henry said...

It is almost as if those high blue state taxes don't buy anything. Isn't that the subtext?

Robert Cook said...

"Are you willing to impose the kinds of massively regressive taxes that can produce the needed money, Cookie? Sorry, but the “rich” just don’t have enough. Single-payer in the US could burn through Gates and Bezos entire fortunes in pretty short order. Canada does it with regressive taxes that are more predictable. Wall Street has a down year, funding dries up? Doesn’t work."

It works in many countries.

Angel-Dyne said...

Tim at large: I have been looking into the whole “Red State Welfare Queens” idea, it turns out that it’s not actually the Republicans in those states getting all of the aid, it’s Democrats in Red States:

Progs do tend to have trouble with the ecological fallacy. E.g., when Southern red states have poor showings by this or that sociological metric, they'll immediately start sneering about those damned backward rednecks. Ahem.

It's pointless to introduce certain pertinent demographic data into such a discussion. They ignore it or immediately change the subject (or ban you). And naturally they switch to different explanatory models when blue states like California turn in similar dismaying stats. Those can all be blamed on Prop 13, dontcha know.

rehajm said...

It's an incentive to get your fiscal fucking mess cleaned up.

People respond to incentives.

Michael K said...

Cookie probably repeating that old Democrat myth that the individual mandate was a Heritage Foundation plan. It was briefly years ago.

It was based on the old concept of the "Free Rider" who did not have insurance and who cost ERs a lot of money.

In fact, that was pretty much a myth, Those who showed up in my trauma center uninsured were either eligible for Medicaid, which could enroll them retroactively, or they were illegals.

The Free Rider myth went away long ago. The original Massachusetts plan that Romney signed had an individual mandate but the legislature, 98% D, included an employer mandate, which he vetoed. They overrode his veto.

The Dimocrats never had the guts to enforce the employer mandate in Obamacare as they knew they would never get elected to anything again if they did so.

It was ignored all through the Obamacare debacle.

rehajm said...

Now instead of your eyes rolling into the back of your head the next time state finance and economics and local budgets are discussed you should sit up straight and pay attention.

rehajm said...

Resources are finite.

Michael K said...

"It works in many countries."

No, Cookie, it doesn't. If you knew anything about healthcare you would know that most countries have health plans that fit their own demographics and economies.

I have for a long time (Ten years on my blog) advocated the French plan as a reform for us.

You can read about it here, if you want to.

Most people, especially the left, does not want to get into the weeds on policy. Leftists prefer simple concepts that don't work, like Socialism.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Mitt Romney is one guy, Cookie -and he stated numerous times that he thought the ACA was crap.

Using Mitt Romney as the one guy excuse to cover for the ENTIRE Democrat party who pushed the ACA on us, is not it, Cookie.

James K said...

If you live in California, you get to pay Federal income tax, and you get to pay California income tax. Yes, that is double taxation.

It's not really double taxation: You're paying different entities for different things.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Socialized health care in most European nations is pretty bad, especially is you are sick and dying.

320Busdriver said...

Phaseout of the AMT exemption is now 940,000 higher for a couple than it was before. 450,000 higher for single. This is where the average NY, NJ et al gets most of the benefit so I don't buy the "we're gonna die" BS. So much feeble analysis.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Suddenly Obama is Mitt Romney and every single Democrat is Mitt Romney. Wow - Mitt Romney is one powerful dude.

MadisonMan said...

Laughing at the "quotes an (unnamed) tax expert" line. They can't get someone to go on record about what the Bill does? It's almost like they don't know and are just putting things out there so that their readers will believe the worst!

Tim at large said...

If you live in California, you get to pay Federal income tax, and you get to pay California income tax. Yes, that is double taxation.

I still don’t see why that justifies demanding that other states who choose to govern themselves differently support your high tax government.

Tommy Duncan said...

This appears to be a perfect tax plan.

Democrats in blue states favor higher taxes, particularly for high income taxpayers. They got them.

Republican in red states favor lower taxes, particularly for the middle class taxpayers. They got just that.

What's not to like?

Curious George said...

"Michael K said...
"It works in many countries."

No, Cookie, it doesn't. If you knew anything about healthcare you would know that most countries have health plans that fit their own demographics and economies."

And won't for long because of the huge influx of muslims entering. Europe is fucked.

Tim at large said...

It works in many countries.

Name one so we can talk about it. Remembering of course that the US has the most progressive tax code in the developed world, probably more so now.

Tim at large said...

Remember Cookie, you have to come up with a country that has single-payer, and doesn’t have a far more regressive taxation scheme than the US. No VAT, for example. VAT is a “tax on the poor!”

Equipment Maintenance said...

Corporate taxes are the ultimate in "double taxation". First the profits are taxed, then the dividends from what remains are taxed !

Michael K said...

People talking about healthcare usually come up with a small place like Singapore which has a monoculture and limited poor.

Sweden used to be called a success but it was that situation that made it work. Now what will they do with 1/3 of the population on welfare ?

320Busdriver said...

Require that all medical procedures/prices are published so that we can actually shop for our care.

This one step fixes US health care spending problem. Done.

Tim at large said...

That's because it was Obama selling it! They were simply stamping their feet in a collective hissy fit.

LOL! So you never listen to a word we say, and always substitute your side’s caricatures and bigoted prejudices for our arguments? Is that how it goes for you? You assume we are all lying, and take on the army of straw men you clearly perceive at our flanks?

Tim at large said...

Sweden used to be called a success but it was that situation that made it work

Yeah, how many generations does it take to destroy a population’s work ethic with free stuff? And if you really want to accelerate the process, bring in massive immigration of people whose basic ethics, based on their religion, lead them to believe it is better to take stuff, than work for it in lowly and degrading commerce.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

I want to pay for my own healthcare and my own health insurance. I want choices and I want competition. I do not want the corrupt government involved.

The VA system is horrible, corrupt and leaves most of our vets hooked on painkillers instead of getting actual state of the art treatment. ("just take a pain pill." - Obama)
The VA system is what democrats want for everyone. Of course the D's can buy their own plans, separate from the peasants.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

Only a liberal would see her taxes going up and think it’s a good thing. Warms my heart that Althouse is still with us.

Here’s a tax tip: your blog may save your deductions. If you can attribute some part of those taxes to maintaining a place to do your blogging, you can deduct those taxes under the business tax category, which isn’t subject to the new limits.

Todd said...

Wait, I thought Democrats and liberals were all about "fair"? Why is not not "more fair" to stop having citizens in low tax states subsidize deductions for citizens living in high tax states? That what was happening. Now citizens living in high tax states will have a more clear understanding of what their actual tax burden is.

In addition, don't Democrats generally believe taxes are too low? Now they get their wish! They also get to #PayTheirFairShare

#KnowledgeIsPower

#TheMoreYouKnow

320Busdriver said...

Actual quote from someone I work with.

"Great. Last year I got a 2000 dollar refund and this (calc) shows I will owe 8000. #ThanksTrump"

You really have to question how TDS affects someones cognitive abilities.

Angel-Dyne said...

Michael K: People talking about healthcare usually come up with a small place like Singapore which has a monoculture and limited poor.

Sweden used to be called a success but it was that situation that made it work. Now what will they do with 1/3 of the population on welfare ?


Blame the fact that the model isn't working anymore on "right-wing extremists" and "hate".

Seeing Red said...

What the tax plan does as afar as real estate tax deductibility is make us more like the world. Which is what the Dems want. How many other countries deduct property taxes?

The Dems refuse to sit down and they still get what they want: more like Europe in Corp tax rates, less deductibility on RE taxes and patriotically pay more.

As to decentralizing the DC bureaucracy, I think there were rumblings about that.

I’ve thought for years the Deot of the Interior should actually BE in the interior.

Shouldn’t the Bureau of Indian Affairs actually be closer to their constituents?


Oh Cookue all u hVe to do is look up Canadian wait times. I think each province posts them and even Canada gave up trying for total control. They allow private clinics see the Chiello? Ruling.

Big Mike said...

@Althouse, you overlooked the most delicious part of the Republican tax plan — even within blue states it doesn’t impact everyone the same. Even in high tax states there were and are plenty of people who don’t make enough to justify itemizing, or they itemize but they don’t get much of a break, and for them the $24,000 deduction will put them financially way ahead. It will hit high income earners in high tax areas who got back a lot through itemization. And these people vote Democrat something like 90%. I’ve lived among them — the folks who praise the minority principal in the local high school even as SAT scores are dropping an average of 120 points per year, while their own child is sent to a prep school.

I’m sorry you come out a loser in this tax reform, but I am glad you’re honest enough to admit that you were taking advantage of a thoroughly unfair component of the old tax laws.

Tommy Duncan said...

Now that we have a change to the federal tax law some states will have to scramble to adjust their tax codes.

A number of states simply use the federal taxable income as their starting point for state income taxes. The larger $24,000 standard deduction (for married couples) will reduce the federal taxable income for many taxpayers and mess up the income tax revenue flow for the states.

State Democrat politicians will see this as an opportunity to raise state income taxes. I expect to be served up even higher state income taxes in Minnesota for 2018.

EDH said...

...corporations and pass through businesses, the darlings of the Republicans, still get to deduct those very same taxes in full...

As if those companies and jobs wouldn't flee those blue states even faster if the deductibility were restricted.

Seeing Red said...

Insty has an article about the Germans NOT HAPPY! Our tax % is lower, our land and energy costs are lower and we are more attractive.

China has also had to make adjustments.

I don’t think it’s a coincidence there’s a compromise coming in the Dream Act.

We r going to need a revamped immigration procedure.

And we are going back to the moon and On to Mars!

This is an exciting time for the US we r shaking off the red tape!

Michael K said...

Earth to Cookie, The NHS is totally reliant of foreign born and trained doctors.

10,000 English and locally trained doctors have left for other countries.

They are being replaced by foreign doctors with sketchy training.

320Busdriver said...

I don't think it's accurate to say that people in the R states are providing a higher proportion of the money flowing to the federal government. In fact I think its just the opposite due to the progressivity of the federal tax and the fact that most of the high paying jobs are on the coasts.

William said...

Great column and good comments. It made me think.

So we know Ă˜bamacare passed with zero Republican support, and we know that it was a seriously flawed bit of legislation that had many unintended and negative consequences. Can you spell errors of the third kind?

Now we take the new tax plan that was passed without one Democratic vote. Let's see what the unintended consequences will be here? Gee, 4% GDP growth? Gee, wage growth? Gee, improved U.S. global competitiveness? Gee, more income = more tax revenue = slow the pace of deficit growth?

And remember, not ONE Democrat vote. That'll look good in the 2018 elections—not ONE Democrat vote.

Heh.

Big Mike said...

@Tommy Duncan, if you keep voting for the DFL you deserve whatever you get. Sorry, but there it is.

Seeing Red said...

The BHS was trying to recruit US nurses one perk was they’ll pay for the plane ticket back to visit.

Seeing Red said...

NHS

320Busdriver said...

Most Henry's, high earners not rich yet, in high tax states were paying AMT, which disallows the SALT deduction anyway. The much higher phaseout of the exemption means many will not be hit by the AMT.The online calcs still show a modest decrease in taxes for these folks from what I've seen.

Seeing Red said...

Demoncrats rammed Obamacare down our throats and now I have a $7000 pp OOP expense on top of increase after premium increase.

The republicans rammed More Money down taxpayers throats and we head for 4% growth and possibly FINALLY indirectly get the $2500 in premium deduction I was promised.

tcrosse said...

@Tommy Duncan, if you keep voting for the DFL you deserve whatever you get. Sorry, but there it is.

Or you could do what Mark Dayton did and keep your millions offshore.

Caligula said...

"I don't know what the "C" in "state and C local tax deduction" is supposed to mean."

It means that New York 'C' has a personal income tax as well as a property taxes, so residents of that 'C' pay city, state and federal income taxes.

Annd those New York C personal income tax rates are not very progressive: they start at 3.078% on the first dollar of income rising to a maximum marginal rate of 3.876%.

https://www.tax.ny.gov/pdf/current_forms/it/nyc_tax_rate_schedule.pdf


(The counter-argument to "double taxation" is that deductibility of state and local taxes means those from high-tax states pay less federal income tax, and this requires those in lower tax states to be taxed more heavily to meet revenue targets.)

TreeJoe said...

The problem with any discussion on taxation is that there is never a baseline target from which the argument stems. We had a 40% corporate tax rate (that mega corporations structure themselves to avoid) and a 40% top federal income tax bracket (that rich individuals structure themselves to avoid).

No one ever discusses what the RIGHT, target level of taxation for these groups is....Republicans just cry that the tax rates aren't competitive (they are correct on that front) and Democrats just cry that these rich folk aren't paying what those tax rates seek to accomplish (also true, but perfectly legal per the law).

From an ideological standpoint, I'm pretty much for tightly structured tax brackets which are more closely upheld to their targets and that, when combined with state and local taxes, don't ever tax income above about 40%.

From that point of view, this tax bill brings us closer to that.

...

We will be forever trapped in a ridiculous partisan conversation until we set ideological targets for taxes and thus federal revenue targets which can then be spent against.

Luke Lea said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tommy Duncan said...

Blogger Big Mike said...

@Tommy Duncan, if you keep voting for the DFL you deserve whatever you get. Sorry, but there it is.


Big Mike, your comment regarding my voting history is unfounded and ignorant. Sorry, but there it is.

mockturtle said...

Todd argues: Wait, I thought Democrats and liberals were all about "fair"? Why is not not "more fair" to stop having citizens in low tax states subsidize deductions for citizens living in high tax states? That what was happening. Now citizens living in high tax states will have a more clear understanding of what their actual tax burden is.

Limousine liberals hardest hit.

Luke Lea said...

Making state and local taxes exempt from the federal income tax is no different than making contributions to universities, museums, churches, and other private non-profit organizations exempt. In both cases the recipients are being subsidized out of the US Treasure in the form of so-called tax expenditures. The size of the subsidy is equal to the marginal tax rates of the individual tax-payers involved, generally in the neighborhood of 30%, which is pretty big.

So the question is, why should the federal government subsidize state and federal governments in some parts of the country but not in others? Indeed, why should it subsidize non-profit organizations of the donor's choice? And in the case of churches, doesn't it amount to an unconstitutional establishment of religion? Ann should know something about the latter issue, since laws are made to furnish these tax expenditures. Surely challenges have been made in the past?

exiledonmainstreet said...

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...
Suddenly Obama is Mitt Romney and every single Democrat is Mitt Romney. Wow - Mitt Romney is one powerful dude."

He sure is. He was giving people cancer just a few short years ago.

Enlighten-NewJersey said...

The tax change redistributes even more income from people paying federal income taxes to those paying zero federal income tax as opposed to redistributing income from one color block of states to the other.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Exiled - I know. Giving people cancer thru osmosis is powerful stuff.
Plus, Mitt Romney wiggled into each and every democrat brain and helped them write the ACA without a single GOP in support.

That is some serious power.

Ann Althouse said...

"Althouse has written that she and Meade pay $17,000 in real estate taxes on their house. Now only $10,000 will be deductible. 1. Do nothing. 2. Pressure and complain to local pols. 3. Move to another state."

1. We always do nothing until we do something.

2. Local pols don't care about me and Meade. You think we get any kind of positive response? We just lie low. Meade had the experience of seeing our own state representative tell our own mayor that he (Meade) is a right winger and both men giving him a dirty look. The most I can do is embarrass them by blogging things like that.

3. Now, selling the house will be harder. Whoever buys will take into account not just the high property tax but the lack of a tax break easing it.

320Busdriver said...

"State Democrat politicians will see this as an opportunity to raise state income taxes. I expect to be served up even higher state income taxes in Minnesota for 2018."

Todays WSJ op-ed posits a race to LOWER state tax rates in places like MN and WI, and IA to prevent an exodus to lower rate states like, gulp, IL.

Governor Walker?

320Busdriver said...

Prof Althouse, have you crunched the Fed numbers in one of the many online calculators?You might be surprised at the result.

Big Mike said...

The most I can do is embarrass them by blogging things like that.

And you don't do it nearly enough.

Now, selling the house will be harder.

Now that is something I'm sympathetic about, but only within limits. You can, and should, ask for a lower assessment on that basis.

Big Mike said...

@Tommy Duncan, easy there, hoss. I was a lonely Republican in deep blue Montgomery County, MD, and then I watched purple Northern Virginia, where I had moved to, shade bluer and bluer as people moved out of high tax but poor service (for middle income earners) Montgomery County into Virginia but bring their stupid voting patterns with them. But you're not alone, are you? I worked in local politics, and the trick is to get involved but be careful to involve yourself with up and comers, not the old timers who've lost so often they can't even begin to think that winning is even possible. It's out there.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Now, selling the house will be harder. Whoever buys will take into account not just the high property tax but the lack of a tax break easing it.

You just need to be more creative in your marketing approach. Appeal to potential liberal buyers by challenging them to display their devotion to #resistance by refusing to bow to the Trump imposed obstacles in buying your home.

Big Mike said...

I might add that it's time-consuming and damned thankless. But then you have nights like election 1984 when I we watched deep blue Montgomery County go for Ronald Reagan, and nights like November 8th of last year.

Mike said...

There is no "double taxation." It was an exemption that is now gone.

Just think of it as a LOOPHOLE that the victorious GOP just closed so all those icky millionaires in CA can't cheat the Feds out of their rightful share.

See that's how you accept it?

AJ Lynch said...

This should be tagged "Eleanor's Law". It is so good it ranks right up there with Fen's Law.

cubanbob said...

Leftists are forever arguing that Blue States contribute more to the Federal Government than Red States. Factually untrue since States don't contribute money to the Federal Government but now that Trump has bitch-slapped them (Blue State Leftist voters) those States may want to reconsider reverting back to the Articles Of Confederation when the States did actually fund the Federal Government.

The Republicans didn't go far enough. If the idea was to stop subsidizing ever increasing state and local spending then the Republicans need to eliminate the tax exemption for state and local bonds (going forward on new issues), tax the state and local tax exempt civil service salaries/pensions for imputed income for the state and local income tax exemptions, eliminate the Davis-Bacon Act and require state and local governments to eliminate their versions if they want federal project funding and pass a National Right To Work Act. There is plenty more to go after but this alone should put the breaks on out of control state and local spending and taxation. Then again, the States can cease funding unfunded Federal Mandates and quit programs like Medicaid. Its time to have a Come To The Lord discussion for taxpayers on just how much entitlement spending and other spending they are willing to pay.

Matthew Sablan said...

I agree. This is fair. Just because your city charges you X dollars to have a bike path doesn't mean you get to pay X less for the common defense.

AJ Lynch said...

Tim at Large:

Move the bureacracy out of DC area? God forbid, those generally liberal fed employees are dispersed to red states or swing states. i say he moves them to the really blue states where they can do no harm from an electoral sense. I.E. Maryland, CT, NY, MA.

Robert Payne said...

Here's a different can of worms to open. I hear your concerns about the unfairness of the state tax deduction and how it apparently favors Blue States. The is an equally good counter argument that Red States are more dependent on federal spending. So what is fair?

When you fact check this assertion there is a great Business Insider article. According to their research, the 5 big winners are

New Mexico
Mississippi
Kentucky
Alabama
Montana

New Jersey residents see .48 cents for every $1.00 they pay in Federal taxes. Is that fair?

F said...

Why not burden people who weren't going to vote for you anyway?

Because they move out of CA to NV (where I live), and they bring their pernicious politics with them.

Robert Payne said...

This is a great blog, but Ann gets quickly out of her depth when we shift to the economy. Citing Elanor's comment is a perfect example. There are plenty of big federal spending projects that don't benefit us all. I live in North Carolina and we get huge federal spending at Pope AFB and Bragg.

cubanbob said...

"3. Now, selling the house will be harder. Whoever buys will take into account not just the high property tax but the lack of a tax break easing it."

Althouse sorry for sounding a bit jerky but your loss is my gain. Philadelphia was becoming the sixth borough of New York City with its relatively cheap cost of living compared to NYC and the one hour thirty minute each way commute tolerable. But now with this new tax scheme Ft Lauderdale airport is thirty minutes away from where I live and a lot of high income people who can do a good amount of their work outside the office and can fly a couple days of the week to NYC will be looking to re-domicile themselves for taxes. I see bigly gains in my property values.

Sebastian said...

"it was consciously convenient." Well, yeah. But it was also taking Dems at their class-warfare word. Of course, when it threatens their power they don't really mean it.

"There was a tax benefit — the state and local deduction — that helped taxpayers in high-taxing/Democratic-voting states and was unavailable to people in lower-taxing/GOP-voting states." A benefit that helped rich taxpayers. As a result of the change, rich people will pay higher taxes and taxation will become a little more progressive. Do Dems believe anything they say?

Assume prog bad faith, and you are rarely wrong.

AJ Lynch said...

Robert Payne:

Re NC military bases: defense spending benefits us all.

mockturtle said...

I agree with Tim and have been saying for years that the federal government needs to be decentralized and moved to flyover states. In the age of telecommunication, there is no need to have the government concentrated in D.C. where power and influence are self-reinforcing and where the bubble prevents fresh ideas.

Such a measure would also enhance national security.

TreeJoe said...

"New Mexico
Mississippi
Kentucky
Alabama
Montana

New Jersey residents see .48 cents for every $1.00 they pay in Federal taxes. "

This is my point exactly - I'm a "upper middle class" guy who started out of a household that was/is in the poverty zone. I live in PA in a "low tax" state and county and school district and I feel my taxes are actually well-balanced.

Technically, my household pays about 33% of our income in immediate, payroll-or-mortgage-withheld taxes. This is net.

However, each incremental dollar I earn more that goes up above 40% and then some.

And by no means do I live in a high tax property or state zone. The prospect of paying an additional 10% of my income to taxes is staggering to me.

Gahrie said...

The government in a democracy

We're not a democracy, we're a republic, and things get worse the more democratic we get. Repeal the rest of the Progressive amendments.

Michael K said...

Because they move out of CA to NV (where I live), and they bring their pernicious politics with them.

I think it isn't that bad. My left wing kids, and I have 3/5 will stay in California. We moved to AZ and took two more GOP votes out of CA.

I will agree that the Massachusetts tax refugees turned New Hampshire purple but I'm hoping it doesn't happen with AZ.

Boston was pretty close to NH but AZ is pretty far from LA.

ArnieKo said...

Now you know how all of us Wiscos outside of Madison/Dane feel about all our tax money going to your market paying for state, and you got it, university jobs.

This person doesn’t speak for all Wisconsinites who live in areas outside of the Madison/Dane area. Some of us actually want our children and grandchildren to have a good university system in our own state. You pay for what you get. If you want to turn Wisconsin into Mississippi, why not just move there?

robother said...

Personally, I thought the best way to get at the SALT deduction was to condition it on reciprocity: Whatever percentage of federal income taxes are deductible in calculating state income tax, that percentage of SALT could be deducted in calculating federal income tax. That would've set up the ultimate virtuous cycle of states competing for wealthy individuals and their corporate headquarters. But the $10,000 cap is a good start.

Jupiter said...

I think there was an editing error, but it was not the "C", and it does not mean "City". It means Schedule C Corporation, C Corp for short, as you can tell from the fact that it is contrasted to "corporations and passthroughs", which should probably be "S corporations and passthroughs". Passthroughs are LLCs, whose owners report the corporate profit as personal income, "passing it through" to their own returns.

Lots of lawyers here, not too many accountants I guess.

Michael said...

The decentralization should be on the part of congress itself and not the bureaucracy. I have contended that we have a moveable capital for purposes of law making with the stipulation being that they meet in places at least a three hour drive from a Palm restaurant. Whores and lobbyists to be camp followers. Locals to see what these superior beings look and act like. Good all around.

Henry said...

New Jersey residents see .48 cents for every $1.00 they pay in Federal taxes. Is that fair?

Whose standing up for millionaires now?

Westchester County is probably even harder hit. And think of the poor sods in Darien Connecticut.

So this is some clever jiu-jitsu. Localities whose residents currently pay the most Federal income tax see the least amount of return from the Feds as a percentage. Meanwhile people who pay the most Federal income tax will see the biggest return in terms of gross dollars. So when talking about millionaires, focus on the dollars. When talking about localities, talk about percentages. And don't let on that locality is a proxy for wealth.

To extend Eleanor's explanation, localities with high taxes are buying things with that revenue. It could be better schools, or better roads, or more subsidized housing, or newer sports stadiums, or kickbacks that attract businesses to relocate. Why should a working class person in Montana subsidize a sports stadium in Orlando?

Whether or not farm subsidies and military bases benefit everyone is a different argument.

Henry said...

@Jupiter -- I thought of that too, but it doesn't make much sense in the context.

Gahrie said...

Some of us actually want our children and grandchildren to have a good university system in our own state.

Why do you hate women? You do know don't you that 20% of women who go to college are raped?

Rusty said...

"Todays WSJ op-ed posits a race to LOWER state tax rates in places like MN and WI, and IA to prevent an exodus to lower rate states like, gulp, IL."

The WSJ is full a shit. Illinois has the nations highest property tax rate. One of the highest sales tax rates.
Move somewhere where they like people.

FullMoon said...

Living in California, I will make a prediction. Our Dem controlled state will find a way to lower our state income tax rate but make it up in other sneaky taxes. Don't know about the rest of the country, but here, when you buy multiple items in the store, each individual item has sles tax added, instead of the tax being added to the total of all items. That way, the sales tax is slightly higher than it used to be. There will be additional "service fees" and taxes with other imaginative descriptors. Recently, Ca has added toll lanes that charge during rush hour traffic. I expect more of these. Commuter lanes, which require two persons per vehicle, will no longer be free.
Unfortunately, average low information voters will always believe the propaganda and Dem talking points.

Would be great if eventually there is a turnover in our govt that actually lowers our taxes here, but not likely.

Mike Sylwester said...

Robert Cook at 7:13 AM

Obama served up a Republican plan

As I understand this argument, the medical-insurance law that Mitt Romney signed as the Governor of Massachusetts turned any later scheme of that kind into "a Republican plan".

Is that all there is to this argument that ObamaCare was "a Republican plan"?

buwaya said...

Money spent on universities in the US mainly pays for an unproductive expansion of a non-teaching bureaucracy and, through expansions in attendance by an ill-prepared student pool, a reduction in intellectual standards.

Universities are much more of a luxury good than a requirement for human development. And this was figured out long ago by development economists, one of many inconvenient truths is that education follows, not leads, economic growth. In the US university degrees are mainly useful as social signals.

Vance said...

As for the argument that the Fed is "establishing religion" by allowing a deduction for donations for churches: there's a reason for that.

Almost universally churches provide more good, relieve more suffering, take care of more needs, and do it far, far more efficiently than the federal government.

Indeed, we could and should just give a coalition of churches a few billion dollars... and we'd probably be able to zero out the Social Security item in the budget, for instance.

If you gave the Mormons, Catholics, Salvation Army and likely a few others a collective trillion dollars, I'm sure that those organizations could completely replace all social spending by the Feds--all welfare, everything. We could cut the Federal budget by far more than that trillion given to those Christian churches.

So that's why donations to churches are tax deductible: because they are well worth it.

--Vance

320Busdriver said...

The WSJ is full a shit. Illinois has the nations highest property tax rate. One of the highest sales tax rates.
Move somewhere where they like people.

That may be true, but if the R gov in Il gets his way the top marginal income rate in IL will still be between 2.5 and 4% lower than WI and IA.

Curious George said...

"ArnieKo said...
Now you know how all of us Wiscos outside of Madison/Dane feel about all our tax money going to your market paying for state, and you got it, university jobs.

This person doesn’t speak for all Wisconsinites who live in areas outside of the Madison/Dane area. Some of us actually want our children and grandchildren to have a good university system in our own state. You pay for what you get. If you want to turn Wisconsin into Mississippi, why not just move there?"

Big Education. The biggest scam in the world. And fed by morons like ArnieKo.

buwaya said...

Government spending cannot be identified accurately according to where its spent, because among other things it is impossible to track where it truly ends up.

Just an example, consider that goods and services purchased by government contractors include things, and services from subcontractors, that are out of area. And many of these are from entities that report income in New York or California.

Federal government spending breakdowns by state, as are usually published, are flawed in many ways.

Rusty said...

Is that all there is to this argument that ObamaCare was "a Republican plan"?
There is no argument. They have no argument. All they can do is try and distract from their complete and utter failure.
If you read, "Counter Punch" then you know what Roberts talking points are going to be.

holdfast said...

Personally I am going to get smoked by the loss of SALT deduction, though I hope it will be somewhat offset by the lowering of rates and AMT changes. That said, as much as it will hurt, it's still good tax policy - there's no reason for high earners in low-tax states to be subsidizing high earners in high-tax states.

Interestingly, while the Democrats are busy denying the stimulus effect that the corporate tax cuts will have, Europeans, especially the Germans, are busy freaking out about how many investment dollars will go to the USA instead of Germany. I tend to think they are being more honest than the Dems. Unless you work in the field, it's hard to appreciate the sheer scale of the overseas revenue that has piled up over the years for big American companies. Think about this - companies like Apple have in excess of $100 billion in cash overseas, yet they borrow money to fund US operations because it's much cheaper than just bringing home their own money.

Mike Sylwester said...

Robert Cook at 7:32 AM

If Mitt Romney had been president, they would have clamored for it, calling it the triumphant implementation on a national scale of the plan implemented in Massachusetts when he was governor there.

The Republican Party's candidate in 2008 was John McCain, not Mitt Romney.

If the Republicans had won the presidential election in 2008, the President would have been McCain, who defeated Romney in the Republican primaries.

Romney did not become the Republican Party's candidate until after ObamaCare was enacted.

Stephen said...

Althouse,

This is a weird way to address a comprehensive argument that the tax cut is cynical.

Pick the provision that you think is most cynical and then show that it is not as bad as one critic says.

Apart from the fact that the defense of the provision appears to rest on a misunderstanding that Red States pay more in taxes than they get in federal benefits while Blue States do not--in fact the Red states are net beneficiaries, while Blues are not.....And apart from the fact that your account doesn't explain why the same wise principle shouldn't apply to Blue entities as well as Blue individuals! Why other than that it's completely persuasive!

Beyond that there's the simple fact that you've ignored every other feature of the bill that Edsall suggests support the charge of cynicism, from rushed timing, to failure to study and hold hearings, to substantive issues like increasing income inequality, putting stealth provisions in the undermine middle class tax cuts, messing up health care, failing to end carried interest, sending jobs overseas, busting the budget, and adding complexity.

Terrific and helpful contribution!

mockturtle said...

Money spent on universities in the US mainly pays for an unproductive expansion of a non-teaching bureaucracy and, through expansions in attendance by an ill-prepared student pool, a reduction in intellectual standards. [Italics mine]

Buwaya, this is so true! Residents of every state should look at the budget of their state universities. The University of Washington was bureaucracy-heavy when I went there and I can only imagine how bad it's become since.

expansions in attendance by an ill-prepared student pool,

It has become a popular notion that every high school graduate should attend a university. The fault partly lies in the silly credential-driven job application procedures, always done online and processed robotically. There remain plenty of jobs for skilled workers. We need our educational system to reflect that. Unfortunately, the skills credentialing 'schools' have become an expensive scam in many cases.

Marc Puckett said...

Was happy to contemplate the new $24,000 deduction for a minute or two (it leaves me with no Federal tax liability at all) before realising that the Legislature in Salem will doubtless raise Oregon taxes in order to claim as much of that money as possible.

Seeing Red said...

I hope Germany sends their jobs here! That’s overseas.

Screws up health insurance not health care. Freebies will still be given.

Rushed timing?

Failure to study and hold hearings?

How long do you think they’ve been studying Corp tax policy?

How many years did they work on the ‘86 tax before they passed it?

Meh.

buwaya said...

Stephen,

Yet again the "net beneficiaries" argument.
There is no rigorous, accurate way to figure who the net beneficiaries actually are in the US economy. A $ going to "healthcare" in Alabama is likely to end up, in large part, in Washington or NYC.

n.n said...

Because Americans are not Pro-Choice, and we believe human life has intrinsic value from conception (i.e. the "source" of human evolution), and not spontaneous conception (the time of viability, the stork's service for worth, convenience, and unPlanned corporate profits), there is a demand for universal medical care, which should not be confused or conflated with health care. The first step in universal health care is education reform. The first step in universal medical care is market reform, or, rather, restoration of market function to set pricing. The second step is control diversity (e.g. racism) that engenders prejudice and agitated states. The third step is financing schemes, including insurance, welfare, and Obamacare. Throughout, there is emigration reform that limits immigration below the threshold of assimilation and integration, Planned Parenthood (e.g. selective-child), and collateral damage (e.g. refugee crises, trail of tears) forced by social justice adventures.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

Romney did not become the Republican Party's candidate until after ObamaCare was enacted.

This is a good point. And besides, if Republicans were really "clamoring" for an Obamacare-like plan, they would have tried to pass it under Bush.

n.n said...

no rigorous, accurate way to figure who the net beneficiaries actually are in the US economy

That's the argument used for taxable welfare benefits (e.g. redistributive change) and contributory entitlements. The argument is correct about the latter, and in the short-term about the former. At least so far as revenue is concerned, but it doesn't cover less important issues including spiritual destruction through unearned income, and risk profiles of progressive corruption of redistributor and beneficiary. The multi-trillion dollar welfare economy has been fiscally and politically/socially very profitable.

Unknown said...

You can't be a "tax expert" if you are unknown or anonymous.

-sw

donald said...

That’s it Mine Sylvester, that’s the entire argument.

A state, determined how that particular state would address health insurance.

It’s a goddamned communist plot.

Trumpit said...

"We all benefit from military bases and farm subsidies."

What a load of tripe. The rich should fund the bloated military budget; The military protects, and polices their assets. "Sen. Chuck Grassley and six other congressional leaders have benefited from farm policies they've helped draft, netting themselves and about two dozen other legislators $15 million in federal assistance over two decades, a Washington, D.C., environmental group says...."

Re: Archer Daniels Midland (Wikipedia)
The company lobbies for agricultural subsidies and price supports including sugar and ethanol. According to a 1995 report by the libertarian think tank Cato Institute, "ADM has cost the American economy billions of dollars since 1980 and has indirectly cost Americans tens of billions of dollars in higher prices and higher taxes over that same period. At least 43 percent of ADM's annual profits are from products heavily subsidized or protected by the American government. Moreover, every $1 of profits earned by ADM's corn sweetener operation costs consumers $10, and every $1 of profits earned by its bioethanol operation costs taxpayers $30."

lawyapalooza said...

Where do you get that people in the GOP states were paying more than their fair share? The undeniable fact is that those states suck FAR more federal aid than they contribute in taxes, and that in fact it is the people in people in blue states (by and large) who continue to subsidize the red states. The tax bill simply exacerbates that disparity, and creates massive deficits.

Steven said...

The day the Democratic Party takes a firm stand against farm subsidies (currently they're in favor), they're gone; the Tea Partiers are ready to help them.

buwaya said...

ADM Hq is in Chicago. Though they normally give much more to Republicans, ADM gave exactly $2200 to the Trump campaign. They favored HRC in 2016, followed by several Republican Trump opponents.

Yancey Ward said...

I wish they had gone all the way and eliminated all deductions but standard ones and dependents. Eliminate all corporate taxes, but make all income derived from capital declarable as personal income. Eliminate the payroll taxes. Then set the income brackets as needed to garner the same amount of revenue as before. This could have been done if you didn't have a Congress that really is cynical and treats the tax code as a means to power to distribute favors.

buwaya said...

Note that ADM is a very good example of the problem with federal spending analyses. Farm subsidies dont all end up with the farmer; I'm sure plenty of farmers would agree here. Much of this is picked up by middlemen of various sorts, which report their income and taxation somewhere "blue", like Chicago IL in this case.

buwaya said...

lawyapalooza,

Do not trust these studies.
They are in every case trivial.
Besides everything else (see re ADM above), income earned by business conducted in Alabama, say, by Apple, is reported in CA for Federal tax purposes. And the income earned by wealthy individuals on businesses they own are also reported disproportionately somewhere "blue". Such as in my own city of San Francisco, where very little of value is produced.

So it looks like San Francisco is subsidizing Little Rock, or Fresno for that matter. But this is not true.

Earnest Prole said...

Politics 101: Dance with who brung ya.

Gahrie said...

ADM has cost the American economy billions of dollars since 1980

So why didn't Obama and the Democratic Congress do something about this when they had the chance?

mockturtle said...

The data showing states that receive more federal funding are based on either per capita or percent of state revenue. So the actual amount is not higher. A state such as New Mexico [which is a blue state, BTW] has a very small population so the federal funding represents a higher percentage of state revenue.

Like so much statistical data, it can be tweaked to suit one's narrative.

buwaya said...

Consider what taxes would be collected in NYC if the companies and individuals based in that city did not have access to the portions of their businesses that sell to and collect revenues from the rest of this massive US economy.

NYC (like San Francisco or Chicago, etc.) produces nothing. It sucks "rents", effectively, from the rest of the US.

Even the local property market would collapse to zero.

Rusty said...

Gahrie said...
ADM has cost the American economy billions of dollars since 1980

So why didn't Obama and the Democratic Congress do something about this when they had the chance?


Crony capitalism

Inga said...

2017 Most and least federally dependent states.

harrogate said...

Next Step: Start a War / Make Criticism Unpatriotic Again. #flagpins

We've seen this movie before.

buwaya said...

Inga,
Address my objections to such studies.
I require you to.

Night Owl said...

"The undeniable fact is that those states suck FAR more federal aid than they contribute in taxes, and that in fact it is the people in people in blue states (by and large) who continue to subsidize the red states."

The concentrations of very rich people in blue states pay money to the feds that gets distributed to the concentrations of very poor people in red states. It's called "spreading the wealth around". If you don't approve then vote for Republicans.

This new tax bill may end up redistributing some of those rich taxpayers to those poorer red states, which should help reduce this "unfairness".

Night Owl said...

"New Jersey residents see .48 cents for every $1.00 they pay in Federal taxes. Is that fair?"

This is kind of a BS stat, since the rich don't get fed handouts and the very poor don't pay taxes. As I said above, if you don't approve of spreading the wealth around, vote for Republicans.

Kyzernick said...

LOL you're asking for Inga to do something she is incapable of - formulate an argument herself.

What the real picture shows is that those "poor" Red states simply have much larger minority populations, and these are the ones sucking up the majority of the welfare benefits. But the Left can't discuss that part because they're all supposed to be on the "hate whitey express".

buwaya said...

One must demand a great deal in order to teach.
One must lay a compulsion to learn.
As in raising a demon, one must compel them to serve.
Herself, in this case, and so I compel Inga.

Night Owl said...

Sebastian @10:15 said:
"Well, yeah. But it was also taking Dems at their class-warfare word. Of course, when it threatens their power they don't really mean it... As a result of the change, rich people will pay higher taxes and taxation will become a little more progressive. Do Dems believe anything they say?

That was my thought exactly.

Bad Lieutenant said...

As a New Yorker, I stand with James Temple:

James Temple : [Praying] Make the big wave. Send it crashing down on us. Destroy us all, if need be. But punish him.

Johnny Rocco : Shut up, old man! l'm warning you!

James Temple : Hear me. Hear me!

Johnny Rocco : I'll kill you!

James Temple : Make a big wave. Send it against us. Take us all. But destroy him.


For "wave" read "SALT change."

Bad Lieutenant said...

What would be really great is if this would impact housing prices and one could finally afford to buy in.

mockturtle said...

Herself, in this case, and so I compel Inga.

Buwaya, I thought it was 'the power of Christ' that compels them.

Drago said...

harrogate: "Next Step: Start a War / Make Criticism Unpatriotic Again. #flagpins

We've seen this movie before."

Indeed, and it was only about 5 years ago that the lefties pulled that one on us with Libya.

Of course, lets not forget that during the entire obama administration all criticism of his policies was racist and unpatriotic.

Hey, do you remember way back when in 1993 Stephi Stephalopagous told us that failure to support Bill Clinton's budget was unpatriotic?

You know, I'll bet if we researched we would find not one word of criticism from harrogate about that.

In harrogates defense, History Began Anew this morning.

buwaya said...

"Buwaya, I thought it was 'the power of Christ' that compels them.'

I will try me, first. I have to try my hand at this compulsion business.
Then the power of Christ, but that is not likely to operate as one would expect.
There is a process here, and prerequisites.

A very readable primer is embedded inside "Hostage to the Devil", Malachi Martin

The lesson there, among many others, is "don't try this at home".

Ignorance is Bliss said...

harrogate said...

Make Criticism Unpatriotic Again. #flagpins

I can safely predict that criticism of you will always be considered patriotic.

You know, 'cause it is.

David said...

My state of South Carolina, clearly Republican, has a top marginal income tax rate of 7% that begins at agi of about $20k. That is somewhat misleading because there are exclusions/adjustments that do reduce Federal agi (the starting point) for purposes of calculating SC income. Nevertheless we are, like many "red" states, not necessarily a low tax jurisdiction.

I don't have a problem with the reduction of the deduction for state and local taxes for the exact reasons that Eleanor sets forth. It will be interesting to see if SC and other states work harder to reduce state income taxes as a consequence of this change. But that requires spending reductions, a hard thing for most states, especially the less affluent ones like SC.

Anonymous said...

@RobertPayne Eleanor is exactly correct. Spending at Armed forces bases benefits all of us because it is at those bases where those charged with defending the country are housed and trained. They are not only going to defend Carolinians when called upon. Sure there is money coming into the state that benefits NC , but it also benefits all of us.

Your NJ number is fallacious. Even a Jersey paper admits that Jersey gets back $.78 for each dollar taxed. (http://www.nj.com/politics/index.ssf/2017/11/nj_already_subsidizes_other_statres.html) I wonder if this figure includes Federal subsidies for AmTrak, for example. There was a good op-ed yesterday in the WSJ that pointed out the numbers for New York and NJ are skewed because many corporate headquarters are located there and taxes are paid in that locale on profits that derive from all over the US as well as the world.

You know what they say about statistics.

William Chadwick said...

Today's Instapundit has a link to a good NRO article about "progressive" hysteria about the tax bill. The article, by is called "Dear Democrats, Ownership Isn't Theft," and is by David French. (I would post a direct link to the article if I could.) It shows, with actual quotes from the usual gang of idiots, that they apparently believe all wealth belongs to the State, so that if the State allows the people who produced that wealth to keep more of it, it's a "heist." No kidding. That's how morally corrupt and/or stupid "liberals" have become. (You can see some other examples of that in the State-f*cker commentariat who post here.)

The late Joseph Sobran, who, with Tom Bethel coined the useful term "the Hive" to describe the aggregate of "liberals," socialists, communists, etc., had an amusing way of dealing with such people. He would ask them, "Will there ever be a point where you say, 'enough'?" That is, enough statism, and specifically enough coercive redistribuition of wealth. Sobran says he could never get such people to clearly state when they would stop wielding the Mailed Fist against the rest of us. That's been my experience as well.

Jim at said...

The government in a democracy should have the goal, as far as possible, of improving the lives of all its citizens, not just the ones who voted for it.

This is the basic, fundamental difference between someone like KittyM - someone on the left - and me.

I don't want the government to 'improve' my life ...whatever the hell that means.

I want it to leave me alone.

Night Owl said...

"You know what they say about statistics."

Indeed. Anyone who has had a job analyzing data knows that they can be skewed to show whatever you want them to show. Leave something out, add something in, pick and choose different starting and end points, and you can turn a negative trend into a positive, and vice/versa. Statistics are a useful tool to bullshitters.

mockturtle said...

I don't want the government to 'improve' my life ...whatever the hell that means.

I want it to leave me alone.


National defense, including border control, is a constitutional function of the federal government. Most other functions, if necessary, should be conceived, implemented and funded under state, county and local authority and jurisdiction.

mockturtle said...

Indeed. Anyone who has had a job analyzing data knows that they can be skewed to show whatever you want them to show. Leave something out, add something in, pick and choose different starting and end points, and you can turn a negative trend into a positive, and vice/versa. Statistics are a useful tool to bullshitters.

Any of us who even worked in research knows how difficult it is to not show our data in the best possible [i.e., the most convincing] light. And, as you point out, it's very easy to do.

Steven said...

Let us consider two states, identical in all things except their state budget and federal funding. The State of Miserly has a state budget of $21 billion, of which $7 billion comes from the federal government, $14 billion from taxes. The State of Wastrel has a state budget of $30 billion, of which $9 billion comes from the federal budget (two billion more than Miserly because it spends more state dollars that qualify for Federal matching funds), $21 billion from taxes. Which is more dependent on federal funding?

Well, most people would look at the fact that Wastrel gets more Federal money than Stingy, and conclude Wastrel is more dependent. Some more sophisticated analysts would further point out that if the federal funding went away, Wastrel would find it harder to raise the money, because it's already taxing at a higher rate; Stingy raising its taxes to cover its whole $21 billion budget would just match what Wastrel is already taxing at.

Inga's linked analysis would argue that it's Stingy, because it gets a higher percentage of its current budget (33.3% instead of 30%) from the Feds, and never mind the reality. Which is to say, it is an evaluation system actively designed to declare a low-spending state "more dependent" on the Federal Government.

Take away that nonsense, and all you have left is the resident dependency. Well, that makes all the red/blue correlations go away; Louisiana 40, California 41, Texas 42, instead of 12/46/35.

Michael said...

Mockturtle

It gets better. If you really want to show off the good results your group has produced then make a graph and squeeze the page thus steepening the incline. You can easily change the values in the horizontal and/or verticals. Honestly presenting results in a way that psychologically influences.

mockturtle said...

California can always secede, as it threatened to do. If the rest of us approve the secession it shouldn't be illegal.

William Chadwick said...

"The government in a democracy should have as it's goal the improvement of the lives of its citizens. . ." Is that a proposition that could be established logically? Or is it just more dogma from the theocratic Cult of the State?

Michael said...

Would be happy for California to pull out of the union. We could then rent them an Airforce, an Army, a Navy, Border personnel for every road entering the "country". Of course their currency would have to be tied to something of value (their statewide and state run industies?) . Our border guards would have to see valid California passports. Etc

Tommy Duncan said...

Blogger Night Owl said...

"Anyone who has had a job analyzing data knows that they can be skewed to show whatever you want them to show. Leave something out, add something in, pick and choose different starting and end points, and you can turn a negative trend into a positive, and vice/versa."

A perfect description of how global warming science works!

Inga said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Inga said...

“Inga,
Address my objections to such studies.
I require you to.”

Oh, hahahahaha!

“Herself, in this case, and so I compel Inga.”

You “compel” me? Are you insane?

JAORE said...

Althouse has written that she and Meade pay $17,000 in real estate taxes on their house.

4br,2-1/2 bath,2,100+sq ft brick home. Garage. Nice neighborhood. Pool on 0.6 acres. Not a mansion, but we are happy here. Under $500 per year property tax.

State income tax? None for me due to my pension, but up to5 % top rate. Sales tax sucks starting at 6% reaching 10% depending on where you are spending your money.

Oh yeah,the calculators for the new tax rates show us saving over $2,200 per year.

Should I link the song Sweet Home Alabama?

[Oh yeah, Inga, I don't know if one can acquire a sense of humor as an adult. But you should at least TRY to learn to identify a joke once in a while.]

Drago said...

Inga: "You “compel” me? Are you insane?"

Maybe he is an obamacare official or a leftist university administrator.

Those guys are quite big on compelling things.

Angel-Dyne said...

Inga: You “compel” me? Are you insane?

If you went out and got yourself the education buwaya has been recommending to you, you'd get the reference.

I imagine literal-mindedness is akin to the state of being somewhere where one has only rudimentary skills in the local language. I know how bewildering and frustrating that can be, so I have some sympathy.

Literal-mindedness, by nature or by circumstance, always points to a void.

Rusty said...


You “compel” me? Are you insane?
It is Buwaya's vain attempt to get you to show your work. In a rather humorous and obscure way.
Satan: "The spirit that ever denies."
Save you the trouble of a headache, Inga. It's from Goethe.
Even I. A lowly, stupid garage mechanic, got the joke.

PackerBronco said...

Blogger KittyM said...
The government in a democracy should have the goal, as far as possible, of improving the lives of all its citizens, not just the ones who voted for it.


Great. So let's improve the lives of people who were forced to subsidize local projects in other states by removing that financial burden from them. Or does this "improving thing" only work in one direction?

A liberal is someone who takes $10 from you, gives you $1 back and expects to be applauded for his generosity in giving you a $1.