October 3, 2018

Fan Bingbing didn't build that.

"Without the Party and country's good policies, without the love of the people, there would be no Fan Bingbing," said Fan Bingbing, quoted in "Vanished Chinese actress Fan Bingbing broke her silence with a groveling apology to the Chinese government, which she owes $129 million" (Business Insider).
... Fan broke her silence on microblogging site Weibo with a confirmation with the financial accusations against her as well as an apology to "society, my friends, the public, and the country's tax authority."

The actress said: "For a while, due to my not understanding the relationship between benefits of the country, society, and individual, I and others took advantage of a 'split contract' to avoid tax problems, and I am deeply ashamed."
ADDED: Speaking of structuring your affairs to avoid tax consequences, the NYT has a big exposé of Trump's tax avoidance: "Trump Engaged in Suspect Tax Schemes as He Reaped Riches From His Father."

66 comments:

Expat(ish) said...

Interesting juxtaposition - the Chinese Communist Party and the NYT.

One requires "guilty by decree" criminals perform public humiliation to rehabilitate themselves and the other runs China.

-XC

rhhardin said...

You have to report income from illegal activity.

Why is that not being forced to testify against yourself? This was answered by saying that tax return information is not released to law enforcement, so it's okay.

Lacking that not-releasing, you now no longer have to file income tax returns. Just reopen that argument.

PB said...

Looks like someone passed their reeducation class!

mccullough said...

Trump understands the tax laws better than anyone. He also understands the Chinese Government better than anyone.

Bingbing doesnt

tim in vermont said...

Where did the NYT get those documents, I wonder. Aren’t their controls at the IRS that show who has accessed a set of records?

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

If Trump owes the IRS taxes - where is the IRS on this matter?

Oh yeah - going after the little guy.

tim in vermont said...

If the Dems win the House, they can just ask for his tax forms and leak cherry picked parts of it when and as needed. In the novel “Dune” there was a saying, “He who can destroy a thing, controls a thing.” I guess that’s how the Democrats view our system of government.

mccullough said...

The NY Times current group of reporters isn’t smart enough to under tax laws. It’s basically a paper that employs girls with Grievance Studies Degrees.

Ben Rhodes was right. Reporters are basically 27 year old morons.

tim in vermont said...

Plus these alleged “crimes” were committed by his dad. So it’s high school parties and the sins of the father and moral demands from the Puritans.

Shouting Thomas said...

Would you forgive Kavanaugh, Althouse, if he grovelled before you and apologized?

How about your high school teacher?

Lucid-ides said...

Did anybody see the shaming-festival take of your Trump hat incident with the Kanye West interview?

Like Fan, this is what the left is after. "You must apologize for your wrong think comrade."

Everybody looks at this and says "oh China...."

It's happening here too....

Michael K said...

I like this part.

But The Times’s investigation, based on a vast trove of confidential tax returns and financial records, reveals that Mr. Trump received the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s real estate empire, starting when he was a toddler and continuing to this day.

And the vast trove came from where ?

Also $413 million is not "crumbs" but a billion is a thousand million so that's about 5% of his fortune. Closer to 4%.

mccullough said...

Correct. It’s Trump’s parents Estates that would owe the estate tax. So it was mom and dad that pulled any scam.

mccullough said...

The Times reporters should interview the Sulzberger family who employs them. They can explain how this works.

Psota said...

Having a "secret contract" (i.e. getting paid under the table) is always illegal. Structuring real estate transfers so there are no tax consequences? Happens everyday.

You are not "avoiding" taxes if there's no obligation to pay taxes

rehajm said...

These maneuvers met with little resistance from the Internal Revenue Service

IOW they were legal?

While the records do not include the president’s personal tax returns and reveal little about his recent business dealings at home and abroad...

Much of his giving was structured to sidestep gift and inheritance taxes using methods tax experts described to The Times as improper or possibly illegal

...that's unnamed 'experts'. 'Improper' doesn't mean anything. 'Possibly illegal' implies most likely legal, per NYT. If they weren't why didn't the 'tax experts' NYT spoke to tell us so?

The line between legal tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion is often murky, and it is constantly being stretched by inventive tax lawyers. There is no shortage of clever tax avoidance tricks that have been blessed by either the courts or the I.R.S. itself. The richest Americans almost never pay anything close to full freight...

...thanks to those 'tax experts' again...

The theme I see here through all of this is valuations: They play around with valuations in extreme ways,” said Lee-Ford Tritt, a University of Florida law professor and a leading expert in gift and estate tax law. “There are dramatic fluctuations depending on their purpose.”

...but Illegal, Lee-Ford Tritt?

What bilge. Get back to us if you ever find something...

Ralph L said...

Also $413 million is not "crumbs" but a billion is a thousand million so that's about 5% of his fortune. Closer to 4%.

That thar's some fuzzy math.

It's been known for years that Trump inherited about $400 million.

tim maguire said...

Mostly Trump's father's (completely legal) tax avoidance. Which we are supposed to blame Trump for.

tim maguire said...

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...If Trump owes the IRS taxes - where is the IRS on this matter?

According to the article, the IRS is fine with the Trump family tax shelters. The Times is hoping readers don't notice.

EDH said...

mccullough said...
Correct. It’s Trump’s parents Estates that would owe the estate tax. So it was mom and dad that pulled any scam.

Yes, it looks like Trump's opponents are once again choosing to go down a rabbit hole that will exhaust the public's interest in a Trump scandal front -- this time tax violations -- with no possibility of it reaching him.

Nonapod said...

Xi is trying to clean up corruption, or at least appear like he is. Examples must be made. If she wasn't such a well liked actress in China she'd probably be dead by now.

As for the Trump story, I'm fairly certain that this "trove" they're bosting about was leaked by someone in the IRS, which is obviously totally illegal. But nobody on the left cares. Remember, their game is to win at all costs, it doesn't matter what you have to do.

Howard said...

It would be more helpful to the democrats cause for the NYT to put this level of effort to dig into the Clinton Foundation. This bullshit helps Trump.

traditionalguy said...

Taking the 1/3 of Daddy’s estate left after the Feds cut happened 20 years after The Donald first borrowed a million to start his business. The 300 million he finally inherited in 2000 was well known at the time of his election. The myth that he claimed all his fortune was self made is another scummy Total hoax by the NYT.

The only angle raised was Trump’s 1/3 of inter vivios gifts by Dad andM that reduced cash and escaped the Gift Tax.

Roughcoat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
traditionalguy said...

FYI the only way to cut Estate tax was gifts in life ,including a charitable Foundation that you control,or a generation skipping trust. But real estate owned at death is the single biggest loophole. The heirs get to skip
Capital Gains Tax. But they do pay the FMV Estate Tax.

grackle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rick Turley said...

Stopped reading the NYT article at this:

“These maneuvers met with little resistance from the Internal Revenue Service, The Times found.”

Clueless reporter. Fake news. Nothingburger.

grackle said...

If Trump paid one penny in taxes that he could legally avoid I would be disappointed in him – or any other private enterprise. Businesses exist to make a profit, not to enrich the government coffers by overpaying on their taxes.

Did the Times article mention that Trump has been audited EVERY year for the past ten years? It sort of like the Mueller witch hunt. Endless activity with no results.

It’s a part of the same old memes: Capitalism is terrible, business is evil, taxation is sacred. And Trump is part of all that in the pseudo-Marxist mind-hive of the NYT.

Kay said...

"The clicks will eventually decline as the hostess continues to post ridiculous opinions that are so one sided."

Wrote someone in another thread, who is unhappy with things our hostess has written. I think it’s a pretty good example of a “you didn’t build it” mentality that audiences commonly seem to adopt.

tim maguire said...

BREAKING: TRUMP'S FATHER EMPLOYED ACCOUNTANTS!!!!

Char Char Binks said...

So solly!

Howard said...

Kay: Althouse dishes so much free ice cream, it has become entitled to critique the flavors.

CWJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BJM said...

Another NYT Trump nothing burger. I seem to remember another President and First Lady who had some questionable investments in the 90's that the Times didn't find problematic in 2016.

The media still doesn't understand that their blatant partisanship is destroying their credibility with a widening swath of the public, not just conservatives, and they are approaching a point where it will not be possible to recover.

Rick said...

"Without the Party and country's good policies, without the love of the people, there would be no Fan Bingbing," said Fan Bingbing,

So the ChiComs are only a decade or so behind Obama and the "moderate" left in claiming government deserves credit for everyone's achievement.

Jerry said...

If the IRS didn't gripe at the time (and you've got to be sure they examined his tax returns with a friggin' microscope) then... where's the problem?

What'd really be funny is if the IRS came out and said "He paid his taxes completely and on time according to the tax code as it was understood at the time. In fact, he consistently overpaid... and got a refund after every annual audit."

richlb said...

Expat(ish) nails it.

rehajm said...

Presidential candidate Fauxcahantas better have an itemized receipt for all those clothes she donated.

Kay said...

Howard said...
Kay: Althouse dishes so much free ice cream, it has become entitled to critique the flavors.


Absolutely. But while some people critique flovors, others tend to demand.

Darrell said...

Is the FBI investigating this privacy breach?
Has the IRS been strip searched?
Where is Lois Lerner?
How many are going to jail?
Trump's taxes are so complicated that the NYT would have to hire tax attorneys and tax specialists/accountants to spend months pouring over each year. Lay opinions are worthless.

Cacimbo Cacimbo said...

Another coordinated attack on Trump by the left. Surprise, Forbes also just happened to drop an article on Trump's finances today.. Now, only two years in, for the mid-terms they are already forced to recycle the failed attacks of 2016.

SeanF said...

The line between legal tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion is often murky, and it is constantly being stretched by inventive tax lawyers.

If that line is murky, the problem is with the law, not the lawyers.

n.n said...
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n.n said...

In China, they had one-child. In America, we have selective-child.

This is the left-wing, establishment's third trimester of the Trump trial. They tried to abort him at conception. They tried to lynch him at inauguration. They are desperate to convince the People, and our Posterity, that he is not viable.

readering said...

The invincible ignorance of The Donald groupies.

Achilles said...

Kay said...
"The clicks will eventually decline as the hostess continues to post ridiculous opinions that are so one sided."

Wrote someone in another thread, who is unhappy with things our hostess has written. I think it’s a pretty good example of a “you didn’t build it” mentality that audiences commonly seem to adopt.

There are dozens of websites that provide same/better reporting and same/better analysis of events.

Ann in particular limits her topics to an extremely narrow set of information.

It is the comment section that makes this blog what it is.

Yancey Ward said...

The line is murky, but here is the thing- that line is determined by the IRS and the tax lawyers. If the IRS signed off on this, you can be pretty sure that they considered legal. The NYTimes story basically seems to be operating on the assumption that you can file anything you want a tax return and the IRS rubber stamps it. I promise you, it doesn't work that way- even for little people without an army of accountants and tax lawyers- I have been audited before, and I am not even a millionaire. I claimed a loss on a real estate investment about 12 years ago, and was audited 5 months later where I had to demonstrate both the purchase price with certified documentation and that the buyer wasn't a straw buyer. And this was all because I claimed a loss of $3,400 that reduced my tax liability by less $800. The audit even covered the prior two years tax returns that were so ordinary that I didn't have to bring anything to the meeting other than my brokerage 1099s and the town tax bills.

Achilles said...

readering said...
The invincible ignorance of The Donald groupies.

In the end we will see who is ignorant.

I read everything you read. But my sources of information are much more broad and varied.

Kavanaugh will be on the court by the end of the week and you will be able to judge whether or not a democrat senator in a red state thinks they have a chance to win by their vote.

Heidtkamp and McCaskill and Donelly are preparing for retirement. I bet they vote no. Flake may very well do so too.

But Nelson? Smith? Tester? Manchin? Brown? Menendez?

Menendez is put in an awkward position no?

Achilles said...

Darrell said...
Is the FBI investigating this privacy breach?
Has the IRS been strip searched?
Where is Lois Lerner?
How many are going to jail?


I agree.

If they don't pay a price for breaking the law the only remedy is vigilantism.

Ford belongs in jail. If justice is not done people will wish it was.

Big Mike said...

If Trump paid one penny in taxes that he could legally avoid I would be disappointed in him – or any other private enterprise

In fact I believe that there’s a Supreme Court ruling to the effect that no one is obligated to pay any more in taxes than the law requires. Any of you lawyers out there have the cite? I might expect a retired Con Law professor to have the cite.

Big Mike said...

Howard (9:05) opines that it would be better for the Democrats if instead of focusing on Trump’s taxes they might do better investigating the Clinton Foundation.

Yes!

The Democrats have a long climb ahead to get back into the good graces of the “little guy” they once claimed to care about. As long as they are the party that supports corruption at a wholesale level might be a good start. Putting Bill and Hillary and a bunch of boot-licking lackeys in jail would be a cheap start on the party’s rehabilitation in the American Heartland.

rehajm said...

Mistakes on Elizabeth Warren's tax returns she calls "entry errors".

Unfit for public office! Corruptible! Impeach!!! Also: what hero of the people has $50,000 worth of cast offs to toss out in a single year? Evita?

mikee said...

Tax AVOIDANCE is not illegal.
Tax AVOIDANCE is what everyone does, when we claim legal deductions from taxation.
Tax EVASION is criminal.
Thanks for clearing this issue up, Althouse.
I am glad to see you believe Trump did nothing illegal regarding his taxes.
Your continued support of our fine president is appreciated.

Anthony said...

I will graciously and courageously offer her asylum.

At my house.

rehajm said...

Fan broke her silence on microblogging site Weibo with a confirmation with the financial accusations against her as well as an apology to "society, my friends, the public, and the country's tax authority."

Isn't that the statement the IRS will require as part of every settlement when the left again takes power?

tim in vermont said...

Clearly there is no deep state.

Narayanan Subramanian said...

Just received Presidential alert test.
Yeaa

Darrell said...

I missed seeing George Soros' tax returns every time someone leaks them.

Darrell said...

Drudge has been down for awhile now.
I suspect a cyberattack.
The Secret Service intercepted ricin going to President Trump.
The Lefties have gone full-loco now.

Unknown said...

She disappeared for months, probably at a “re-education” center. The Times would equally love to re-educate Trump.

Kay said...

Achilles said...

There are dozens of websites that provide same/better reporting and same/better analysis of events.

Ann in particular limits her topics to an extremely narrow set of information.

It is the comment section that makes this blog what it is.


Yes, I agree and am aware of all these points.

Michael K said...

Surprise, Forbes also just happened to drop an article on Trump's finances today..

I assume you know China owns Forbes.

Char Char Binks said...

"I will graciously and courageously offer her asylum.

At my house."

Get in line!

William Chadwick said...

I want to party with Fan Bingbing!

MountainMan said...

@Big Mike, per your request above:

"Any one may so arrange his affairs that his taxes shall be as low as possible; he is not bound to choose that pattern which will best pay the Treasury; there is not even a patriotic duty to increase one's taxes."

Gregory v. Helvering, 69 F.2d 809, 810 (2d Cir. 1934)

"Over and over again courts have said that there is nothing sinister in so arranging one's affairs as to keep taxes as low as possible. Everybody does so, rich or poor; and all do right, for nobody owes any public duty to pay more than the law demands: taxes are enforced exactions, not voluntary contributions. To demand more in the name of morals is mere cant."

Commissioner v. Newman, 159 F.2d 848, 851 (2d Cir. 1947) - dissenting opinion

William said...

Fan Bingbing is no Yo Ma Ma so far as catchy names go, but it's pretty good.......Just last night, on Amazon's recommendation, I watched a documentary on Nadia Comenici (sp?). She's the Rumanian gymnast who scored a perfect 10 at the '76 Olympics. She was a great hero in her country, but, after she won, the family remained ensconced in extremely modest state housing, The mother had to work a second job to afford food. Nadia, for a time, was the most famous female athlete in the world. She was good looking and had a reserved, quiet demeanor that photographed well. She never made a dime from her fame and charisma. Whenever she appeared on state television, she profusely thanked the dictator, Cousecu, for providing such great opportunities for her and the Rumanian people. She dated the dictator's son. In the documentary, she claims it was just dating. Are we obliged to believe a woman if she claims non-rape? How do you say no to the dictator's son......... Anyway, the story has a happy ending. She defected to the west, married a handsome American gymnast and lived happily ever after--but that's not the moral of the story. Here's the moral: if you wish to eliminate both wealth inequality and tax evasion, the simple solution is not to pay anyone anything.......Fan Bingbing would be a cool name for gymnast.