The Tax Policy Blog

April 27, 2005

With all the attention paid to big corporations like Walmart and Microsoft, it's easy to forget about the little guys—small, entrepreneurial companies that fill in the less-glamourous contours of the U.S. economy.

An excellent memo released by the U.S. Treasury last month reminds us of the long-run importance of these dynamic, experimental small companies—and how our individual...

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April 25, 2005

One of the basic principles of tax policy is transparency—it should be clear to taxpayers who's being taxed and how much. If we expect voters in a democracy to make good choices about the level of government spending, they need to understand the full costs of it. Economists call this "tax awareness," and it's fundamental to good tax policy. 

The current issue of Tax Notes ...

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April 24, 2005

As the reach of the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) grows, pressure on Congress for reform continues to build.

The AMT—a second income tax that’s parallel to the regular income tax—was designed to make sure wealthy taxpayers didn’t get away with paying no tax. But thanks to inflation it’s hitting more less-than-wealthy Americans every year. And since the AMT doesn't allow deductions of state and local income taxes like the regular federal income tax, taxpayers are beginning to complain...

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April 20, 2005

Most Americans think of their tax burden as the amount on the bottom line of their 1040 form. But the cost of taxes isn't just what we pay. It's also the lost time we spend filling out forms.

Economists call these "tax compliance" costs. As a recent AP story reports, the IRS estimates Americans will spend 6.6 billion hours filling out tax forms this year, including 1.6 billion hours on the...

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April 14, 2005

Do wealthy taxpayers pay their fair share of taxes? Polls consistently show Americans believe they don't. But are they right?

The U.S. Treasury Department recently released a memo (PDF) that sheds some light on the issue:

...[A] small group of higher-income taxpayers pay most of the individual income taxes...

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April 13, 2005

New York state continues to push the envelope on "jock taxes"—taxes that force traveling professionals to file tax returns in every state where they earn income. A recent New York Times report shows they continue to spread beyond wealthy professional athletes. New York's latest target? A computer programmer living 900 miles from Manhattan:

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April 13, 2005

A recent New York Times story reports states are increasingly getting "addicted" to gambling taxes as an easy revenue source:

Gambling revenues, once a mere trickle, have become a critical stream of income in a number of states... "We're drunk on gambling revenue," said Representative Wayne A. Smith,...

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Subscribe to Tax Foundation - Tax Foundation's Tax Policy Blog The Tax Policy Blog is the official blog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.

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