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Index » Regional/Local » USA/Canada » Taxes, Taxes, Taxes (and Taxes) Page: 1, 2, 3 ... 72, 73, 74  Next
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R_P

R_P Avatar



Posted: Jun 9, 2021 - 11:50am


The Secret IRS Files: Trove of Never-Before-Seen Records Reveal How the Wealthiest Avoid Income Tax
We Ran the Treasury Department. This Is How to Fix Tax Evasion.
rhahl

rhahl Avatar



Posted: Apr 10, 2021 - 5:27am

Around 2008 I was in the audience when Paul Krugman was speaking and I got to ask a question, which was: In the early-80's the Kennedy family fortune was said to be $400 million.  Today $400 million is a good year on Wall Street for one man (it was always a man then). My question is, where is it all coming from?
 
He umd...and thought about it...and eventually said "Well, it's not funny money." Meaning it was not literally counterfeit money.  But that was all he could come up with.
 
The trouble is it might as well be counterfeit money. As George Carlin said, "It's a big club, and you ain't in it." You are not in the big club of virtual counterfeiters. And that is a problem for everyone who is not, since they can buy politicians but we can't.
 
I always made enough money to feel comfortable, realizing that this would be true only so long as my health held out, and paid various tax rates from the lowest to the highest. Taxes never changed my life.  My conclusion from this experience was that taxes are never too high unless wages are too low. It is the same with inflation, which used to be called the high cost of living. The problem is not that prices are too high, the problem is that you are not paid enough. (A good put-down from those days: "He can't afford the cost of high living.")
 
A friend my age who came from Israel in the 1970's said that at one time inflation had been so high there that people got salary hikes almost every pay day. No need to ask. They paid their bills quickly, and tried to save by buying tangible goods and land, but it didn't really matter because "their money" kept pace with the cost of living.
 
The reason employers urge us to hate taxes is because they pay them, not us. The lower our tax burden, the less our employers need to pay to get us to show up. But when taxes are cut, then municipal services go to hell, and we do pay the real cost of that.
KurtfromLaQuinta

KurtfromLaQuinta Avatar

Location: Really deep in the heart of South California
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 5:23pm



 BlueHeronDruid wrote:

 KurtfromLaQuinta wrote:


  That's what you get for making over $400,000.



 
That would have been nice. Any year. Any year at all.


 
Oh yeah.
Life is STILL good!

Red_Dragon

Red_Dragon Avatar



Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 5:12pm



 Red_Dragon wrote:
here's a novel idea: how about we let people keep their money and be responsbile for themselves?
 


Wow. How things have changed.
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 4:22pm

 steeler wrote:
 miamizsun wrote:
what is the estimated annual cost of tax (avoidance and) compliance policy?

depends, and i've seen it ranging between 250 billion to 1 trillion dollars

point being it is a massive waste of valuable resources (time and money)

there is a massive bureaucracy/industry built around this nuttery too (and it is a huge influential political/voting bloc)

some countries have a very simple policy, like a card with 8 to 12 lines

we should move toward that type of filing

 
I wholeheartedly agree it should be simplified. There are myriad reasons it currently is not. I would like to raise one of those, which applies not just to taxes. I call it the obsession of “catching the cheaters.” We do this to the point of diminishing returns. There was a time when I represented clients who were on welfare. The “catch the cheater” focus inherent in those systems resulted in many layers of bureaucracy, way past any point of necessity. 

 

ok, but just so you know, i don't even agree with me, but i might agree with you agreeing with me
islander

islander Avatar

Location: Seattle
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 3:55pm



 steeler wrote:


 miamizsun wrote:


 islander wrote:

Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

Looking back, I think this sums it up pretty well: 

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 islander wrote:
We are spending time and $'s to give them a number that they already have.

I thought I was the only one who thought this way. Even just calculating my withholding is a couple of orders more difficult/wrong than it should be. I (and apparently half of America) have zero idea whether I withheld enough, too much, or will have to pay more this year.
 
It really shouldn't be this hard.

 

what is the estimated annual cost of tax (avoidance and) compliance policy?


depends, and i've seen it ranging between 250 billion to 1 trillion dollars

point being it is a massive waste of valuable resources (time and money)

there is a massive bureaucracy/industry built around this nuttery too (and it is a huge influential political/voting bloc)

some countries have a very simple policy, like a card with 8 to 12 lines

we should move toward that type of filing

 
I wholeheartedly agree it should be simplified. There are myriad reasons it currently is not. I would like to raise one of those, which applies not just to taxes. I call it the obsession of “catching the cheaters.” We do this to the point of diminishing returns. There was a time when I represented clients who were on welfare. The “catch the cheater” focus inherent in those systems resulted in many layers of bureaucracy, way past any point of necessity. 

 

There is also the concept of treat people like cheats and they will be cheats. Treat them like responsible adults and ... well they will cheat less. As a manager I got a lot more out of my people when I left them to their own devices and assumed they would get it done instead of assuming they were out goofing off. 
steeler

steeler Avatar

Location: Perched on the precipice of the cauldron of truth


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 3:09pm



 miamizsun wrote:


 islander wrote:

Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

Looking back, I think this sums it up pretty well: 

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 islander wrote:
We are spending time and $'s to give them a number that they already have.

I thought I was the only one who thought this way. Even just calculating my withholding is a couple of orders more difficult/wrong than it should be. I (and apparently half of America) have zero idea whether I withheld enough, too much, or will have to pay more this year.
 
It really shouldn't be this hard.

 

what is the estimated annual cost of tax (avoidance and) compliance policy?


depends, and i've seen it ranging between 250 billion to 1 trillion dollars

point being it is a massive waste of valuable resources (time and money)

there is a massive bureaucracy/industry built around this nuttery too (and it is a huge influential political/voting bloc)

some countries have a very simple policy, like a card with 8 to 12 lines

we should move toward that type of filing

 
I wholeheartedly agree it should be simplified. There are myriad reasons it currently is not. I would like to raise one of those, which applies not just to taxes. I call it the obsession of “catching the cheaters.” We do this to the point of diminishing returns. There was a time when I represented clients who were on welfare. The “catch the cheater” focus inherent in those systems resulted in many layers of bureaucracy, way past any point of necessity. 

BlueHeronDruid

BlueHeronDruid Avatar

Location: planting flowers


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 3:01pm


 KurtfromLaQuinta wrote:


  That's what you get for making over $400,000.



 
That would have been nice. Any year. Any year at all.

KurtfromLaQuinta

KurtfromLaQuinta Avatar

Location: Really deep in the heart of South California
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 2:58pm



 BlueHeronDruid wrote:


 islander wrote:



Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

<snip>

It really shouldn't be this hard.

 
Drawing both SS and retirement funds, along with hobbitt's consulting on a 1099 for 5 months, left us in a different situation this year. IOW, we (I) screwed up.

But I had the over $6k to pay the IRS, so there's that.





 That's what you get for making over $400,000.


BlueHeronDruid

BlueHeronDruid Avatar

Location: planting flowers


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 12:28pm



 islander wrote:



Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

<snip>

It really shouldn't be this hard.

 
Drawing both SS and retirement funds, along with hobbitt's consulting on a 1099 for 5 months, left us in a different situation this year. IOW, we (I) screwed up.

But I had the over $6k to pay the IRS, so there's that.





Coaxial

Coaxial Avatar

Location: 543 miles west of Paradis,1491 miles eas
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 4:42am

For some reason if your state freezes more than normal you get two extra months to file your taxes...God bless America.{#Good-vibes}
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 9, 2021 - 4:34am



 islander wrote:

Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

Looking back, I think this sums it up pretty well: 

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 islander wrote:
We are spending time and $'s to give them a number that they already have.

I thought I was the only one who thought this way. Even just calculating my withholding is a couple of orders more difficult/wrong than it should be. I (and apparently half of America) have zero idea whether I withheld enough, too much, or will have to pay more this year.
 
It really shouldn't be this hard.

 

what is the estimated annual cost of tax (avoidance and) compliance policy?


depends, and i've seen it ranging between 250 billion to 1 trillion dollars

point being it is a massive waste of valuable resources (time and money)

there is a massive bureaucracy/industry built around this nuttery too (and it is a huge influential political/voting bloc)

some countries have a very simple policy, like a card with 8 to 12 lines

we should move toward that type of filing

rgio

rgio Avatar

Location: West Jersey
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 8, 2021 - 7:38pm



 islander wrote:



Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

Looking back, I think this sums it up pretty well: 

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 islander wrote:
We are spending time and $'s to give them a number that they already have.

I thought I was the only one who thought this way. Even just calculating my withholding is a couple of orders more difficult/wrong than it should be. I (and apparently half of America) have zero idea whether I withheld enough, too much, or will have to pay more this year.
 
It really shouldn't be this hard.

 
I've been doing taxes for 30 years...the first 10 professionally...and it is unimaginable how inefficient and complicated it is.  It costs $45 per state (after 1), and $25 per state to file electronically.  My daughter had 2 W-2's, interest income, and a flexible spending account summary...and using my initial purchase from TurboTax it still cost her over $100 to file tonight.  Some of that was out of convenience, but it's insane.

My federal return, in a year where I made less money than I have in a few decades, is 38 pages long.  WTF!?!

To islander's point....miss $5 on a 1099...and you get a notice the return is wrong.

islander

islander Avatar

Location: Seattle
Gender: Male


Posted: Apr 8, 2021 - 7:28pm




Islander's semi-annual taxation rant, circa 2021, Pandemic edition!

Well we are getting a heft refund this year. Not the way I like to do it, but sheesh planning is hard with everything else going on. Add in the vagaries of the PPP loans and some tax credit stuff and some leftover expenses and stupid tax policies that really shouldn't exist, and I just couldn't dial it in very well.

Looking back, I think this sums it up pretty well: 

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:


 islander wrote:
We are spending time and $'s to give them a number that they already have.

I thought I was the only one who thought this way. Even just calculating my withholding is a couple of orders more difficult/wrong than it should be. I (and apparently half of America) have zero idea whether I withheld enough, too much, or will have to pay more this year.
 
It really shouldn't be this hard.

sirdroseph

sirdroseph Avatar

Location: Yes
Gender: Male


Posted: Oct 16, 2020 - 4:57am

Taxes should be gauged to equal the number of people that have had their minds changed this election year.{#Dancingbanana}
westslope

westslope Avatar

Location: BC sage brush steppe


Posted: Oct 15, 2020 - 11:54am

SFW:   Normally three "fixes" or upgrades would resuscitate an older laptop.

- larger, faster SSD
- more RAM
- new cooling fan(s) if required

For any PC workstation or laptop, regardless of the specific OS, a clean re-install of the operating system (OS) can make a huge difference.  Tedious but usually fairly straightforward.

If you are waiting for the latest and greatest from apple, you will pay top dollar.  The bleeding edge is not inexpensive.    Me thinks that apple laptop architecture from a year or two ago would probably be more than fast enough.    The SSDs from a couple of years ago are much, much faster than the earlier SSDs.

If you still like the keyboard and the monitor on the laptop, a new SSD might keep it 'fresh' for a bunch more years.   Then, I live in the PC world.  Parts for apple machines might be much, much more expensive.
miamizsun

miamizsun Avatar

Location: (3261.3 Miles SE of RP)
Gender: Male


Posted: Oct 13, 2020 - 11:39am

 ScottFromWyoming wrote:
My business laptop is dying. Has been for 18 months or so; last summer I tried to get some repairs done and all the possible repair places were "ooh, you don't want to know how much that will cost." So I have been nursing it and it's been fine and I can probably get another year out of it if I need to. But this time of year, I look around for things I'm going to buy anyway because taxes, and it would really help to put that laptop on this year's expenses, I think. 

The only problem is, MacRumors says it's a particularly bad time to buy, because an upgrade is overdue, the new generation is supposed to run cooler and longer on non-Intel chips. And they *might* announce them in November. Or not at all.  It's frustrating.

But also not because the new OS is incompatible with the old Adobe software I have. So that sucks but it came out in *holy crap* 2012. Time to upgrade, yep. *sigh*
 

hey scott you may see something for prime day/apple promo
ScottFromWyoming

ScottFromWyoming Avatar

Location: Powell
Gender: Male


Posted: Oct 13, 2020 - 11:01am

My business laptop is dying. Has been for 18 months or so; last summer I tried to get some repairs done and all the possible repair places were "ooh, you don't want to know how much that will cost." So I have been nursing it and it's been fine and I can probably get another year out of it if I need to. But this time of year, I look around for things I'm going to buy anyway because taxes, and it would really help to put that laptop on this year's expenses, I think. 

The only problem is, MacRumors says it's a particularly bad time to buy, because an upgrade is overdue, the new generation is supposed to run cooler and longer on non-Intel chips. And they *might* announce them in November. Or not at all.  It's frustrating.

But also not because the new OS is incompatible with the old Adobe software I have. So that sucks but it came out in *holy crap* 2012. Time to upgrade, yep. *sigh*
haresfur

haresfur Avatar

Location: The Golden Triangle
Gender: Male


Posted: May 24, 2020 - 2:35pm



 rgio wrote:


 buddy wrote:


 kurtster wrote:

There are more links, one of which takes you to the WSJ that comes to the same conclusion.
 
Don’t forget Faux News, I’m sure it supports your position as always.

 
Tax is a combination of taxable base and rate.  The income tax rate is what started this conversation, and is the easy data element to compare.  The taxable base is much more complicated.  If you at the combination since the 50's, the costs to the top tier are down, but only (not meant as a judgment) 5%-10%.  

The problem with the focus of the chart is that it ignores the "other" taxes now collected.  Income taxes are only about one-third of the total revenue that governments receive.  Social taxes, business taxes, and value-added taxes (sales tax, real estate tax, gas taxes, vice taxes (cigarettes & alcohol), tariffs) make up the rest.  These taxes are generally at flat rates, which have gone up dramatically over the years.  

The percentage of personal income that goes toward all taxes has increased dramatically more for lower-income families than it has for the top half of Americans.  Looking at a few rates doesn't tell the story.  

There is no doubt the rules are tilted in favor of the wealthy.  In NJ for example, every fast food meal is taxed at 6.625%.  Meanwhile, NJ has a limit of $20k of tax on a yacht.  Go buy yourself a $500k boat, and it'll cost you $20k instead of the $33k it would cost buying happy meals.  The house down the street from me saves tens of thousands of dollars per year in taxes because he claims "farm rates" on his 40 acres by selling $200 worth of wood per year to someone.   

Anyone suggesting tax policy has evenly apportioned the US cost increases since the 1950's is either ignorant or dishonest.  
 


rgio

rgio Avatar

Location: West Jersey
Gender: Male


Posted: May 24, 2020 - 9:29am



 buddy wrote:


 kurtster wrote:

There are more links, one of which takes you to the WSJ that comes to the same conclusion.
 
Don’t forget Faux News, I’m sure it supports your position as always.

 
Tax is a combination of taxable base and rate.  The income tax rate is what started this conversation, and is the easy data element to compare.  The taxable base is much more complicated.  If you at the combination since the 50's, the costs to the top tier are down, but only (not meant as a judgment) 5%-10%.  

The problem with the focus of the chart is that it ignores the "other" taxes now collected.  Income taxes are only about one-third of the total revenue that governments receive.  Social taxes, business taxes, and value-added taxes (sales tax, real estate tax, gas taxes, vice taxes (cigarettes & alcohol), tariffs) make up the rest.  These taxes are generally at flat rates, which have gone up dramatically over the years.  

The percentage of personal income that goes toward all taxes has increased dramatically more for lower-income families than it has for the top half of Americans.  Looking at a few rates doesn't tell the story.  

There is no doubt the rules are tilted in favor of the wealthy.  In NJ for example, every fast food meal is taxed at 6.625%.  Meanwhile, NJ has a limit of $20k of tax on a yacht.  Go buy yourself a $500k boat, and it'll cost you $20k instead of the $33k it would cost buying happy meals.  The house down the street from me saves tens of thousands of dollars per year in taxes because he claims "farm rates" on his 40 acres by selling $200 worth of wood per year to someone.   

Anyone suggesting tax policy has evenly apportioned the US cost increases since the 1950's is either ignorant or dishonest.  
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