Blog Post Round-Up

September 28, 2008

  • Mississippi Tax Study Commission Releases Final Report: The Mississippi Tax Study Commission has released its final report.
  • McCain and Obama Both Play Loose with Facts on Tax Issues in Debate: In the economic portion of the debate, both Sens. Obama and McCain made some statements about taxes that played somewhat loose with the facts. When Obama speaks about tax cuts for CEOs under the McCain plan, he assumes the Bush tax cuts were repealed. But when he talks in the same sentence about the “leaving 100 million Americans out” figure for McCain’s tax plan, he is assuming that the Bush tax cuts are left in place. And when he says “95 percent” will get a tax cut, that’s true for “tax units” but represents only 81.3% of the population. That also gives the Obama plan credit for an AMT patch but not the McCain plan, even though both propose one.
  • Biden Speech Is Feast for “[I]f I’ve misstated [McCain’s] position that [he’s] going to tax health care benefits, please tell me,” said Senator Joe Biden. He did. Over the next ten years, McCain’s health care tax plan is actually a $1.3 trillion tax cut.
  • Palm Bay Police Chief Says City Isn’t Collecting Enough Taxes to Respond to Crimes: Police Chief Bill Berger of Palm Bay, Florida, (pop. 100,116) has announced that his officers may stop responding to burglaries where the owner failed to lock his home or car. Palm Bay residents should not be fooled by the Washington Monument trick. A good rule of thumb is this: if your city’s government still offers jazzercise and scrapbooking classes, then it still has all the money it needs.
  • Oklahoma Tax Authorities Outrageously Overreach: It’s fine for Oklahoma’s tax collectors to send a letter of inquiry to the kids, asking what activities they’ve done and what taxes they owe. But it’s not professional to treat a claim like “a billion served” as truth, and waste time and resources coming up with an implausible tax bill.
  • Congressman Rangel’s Tax Woes: On Friday, 19-term Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY) wrote $10,800 worth of checks to the Internal Revenue Service. The powerful chairman and three-decade member of the House Ways and Means Committee, which writes the tax laws, had encountered a series of tax-related allegations over the past several weeks.


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