By John Ruberry

Last night the New York Times, using an illegally obtained copy of Donald Trump’s 1995 tax return, speculated that because of a $916 million loss listed on that return, the Republican nominee may have, yes, may have, avoided paying federal income taxes for 18 years.

With help from his wealthy father, not the government, Trump, a real estate developer, built an international business empire. And because of his Apprentice television franchise, even before his presidential run Trump was likely the most recognized business person in the United States.

Hillary Clinton is also rich. Her business–make that racket–is influence peddling. While her husband was attorney general, and then governor of Arkansas, Clinton was an attorney at the Rose Law Firm in that state’s capital city. The Clintons, aided by the Rose Law Firm, used its clout to protect themselves and Jim and Susan McDougal, their investment partners. While they didn’t make money in Whitewater, Arkansas’ first couple did their best to cover up the Whitewater scandal, which led to the convictions the McDougals, Bill’s successor as governor, and Webster Hubbell, a partner at the Rose Law Firm and a close friend of the Clintons.arkansas-sign

The McDougals ran Madison Guaranty Savings and Loan in Little Rock, which failed in the 1980s. They chose, of course, the Rose Law Firm to defend their thrift.

After emerging from the White House “dead broke,” the Clintons were still able to purchase a mansion in Westchester County, New York, one of the most expensive real estate markets in the nation. In 2001 the Clinton Foundation was formed, by this time of course Hillary was a US Senator from New York. The foundation traded off of Bill’s status as an ex-president–six-figure public speaking fees to him went to this “charity,” which offered high-priced salaries to Clinton family cronies and served as a lucrative waiting room for those Clintonistas between government jobs.

The former first couple learned that influence peddling, not property investments, was their pathway to wealth.

While Hillary was serving as Barack Obama’s secretary of state, foreign donors poured money into the “charity,” probably using their cash as down payments for favors from Madame Secretary. It worked. A majority of the non-governmental meetings Hillary had at State were with Clinton Foundation donors, which is why the foundation is commonly referred to as a slush fund.

In Illinois, where Hillary grew up, that’s called pay-to-play.

John ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry of the Magnificent Seven

There’s nothing like this type of sordidness in Trump’s background.

After leaving State, it was Hillary’s turn to collect the big-money speeches, with Wall Street firms being some of her most lucrative clients. Without having been a major government figure–or the spouse of one–Clinton’s speech income just might have matched that of a Times Square busker, such as the Naked Cowboy.

In 2014 just 5.7 percent of the Clinton Foundation budget was spent on charitable grants.

Where is that story, New York Times?

Oh, do you know anyone who doesn’t try to pay as little income tax as possible?

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.



Every year between January and April Americans see ads like this:

From tax preparation companies and ads like this

from tax software companies

As a person who has done their own federal taxes on paper without using tax preparation software as my mother taught me and has no interest in sharing my tax numbers with anyone else such ads have no interest to me, but to most Americans the selling point of these ads is the ability of either the professionals at H & R block or Turbo Tax to make sure that their customers get every deduction that they are legally allowed to take.

Now picture if those ads were different.

What if that Turbo Tax ad instead of saying “In her case yes the amount goes right here” when asked about a load deduction said: “In her case yes but we at Turbo Tax aren’t going to apply it because we want to help you to be a patriotic American who pays her fair share of taxes.”

What if that H & R Block ad instead of saying “Nobody gets more of your money back then Block, guaranteed.” said “Nobody makes sure you pay your fair share of taxes like Block, guaranteed.”

Or picture going to your local accountant who instead of promising to get you the best refund they legally could promised to make sure you paid your fair share of taxes.

Would you pay any of those people to do your taxes?

Of course not! That’s idiocy.

It’s a fair critique to say that Donald Trump is the first major presidential candidate to not release his taxes in 40 years and if you object to that failure, that’s fine.

But to critique Donald Trump for employing accountants who take every tax deduction specifically allowed under US law, that’s simply nuts.

FYI I’d be interested in hearing how many members of the MSM employ such civic minded accountants. Maybe they can provide us with a list.

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Come to Draft Town
Draft Town billbard, Chicago

By John Ruberry

Deadly shootings in Chicago are up 20 percent this year over 2015. Last year Rahm Emanuel and the exclusively-Democratic City Council stuck it to Chicagoans by enacting the city’s biggest property tax in history to pay for municipal worker pensions–with probably more hikes to come. Chicago’s population decline continues, the onetime Second City is now third, with Houston within reach to pass it.

How does Rahm Emanuel respond?

With Roman style bread and circuses.

Two weeks ago the NFL draft was held in downtown Chicago for the second straight year–accompanied by an elaborate Draft Town festival.

And like the bounty hunters who doggedly pursued Han Solo in Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back, Rahm desperately wants to plop the proposed George Lucas museum on Chicago’s Lakefront despite opposition from preservation groups and a federal judge. Chicago was Lucas’ second choice for his temple, plans for a San Francisco museum fell through two years ago. The filmmaker’s ties to Chicago are at best tenuous. He married his second wife, a Chicago native, on the lakefront a few miles south of the proposed museum site. Oh, Harrison Ford, who played Solo, was born in Chicago and he grew up in suburban Morton Grove, where your humble blogger lives.

Lake Michigan in Chicago
Lake Michigan in Chicago

Meanwhile the carnage in Chicago continues. Last night a man eating dinner was shot to death while eating dinner when someone fired into his Southwest Side home. Early this morning a passenger in a car was murdered when he was shot on Lake Shore Drive. Another man was shot on the same road, albeit not fatally, two days earlier.

Oh, I almost forgot. Chicago anemic school system, which kind-of-sort-of educates children, is essentially insolvent.

Meanwhile Mayor Emanuel cries out with a Hail Mary pass, “Help us Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re our only hope.”

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit


By John Ruberry

Type “Detroit revival” or “Detroit comeback” into your Google search box and you’ll collect a lot of hits and discover glowing yarns about the turnaround of what was once one of America’s greatest cities. Here’s one from Forbes just last week. There is even a Pure Michigan TV commercial about Detroit.

But as John Adams once famously wrote, “Facts are stubborn things.”

Yes, there is a Detroit bounceback underway but it is centered in downtown and the neighborhoods that border it. That’s it.

Then there are the facts.

The fiscal year for Detroit Public Schools ends on June 30. On July 1 there is no money for summer school or physical upkeep, unless the state rushes in for a rescue. Such a rescue should not be confused with a proposed $720 million one that will deal with DPS’ long-term debt.

Adding an exclamation point to the problems of DPS last week was a former school principal who pleaded guilty to accepting kickbacks from an allegedly crooked supplier. A dozen other DPS officials, most of them former principals, have also been charged with collecting kickbacks.

Abandoned Detroit school
Abandoned Detroit school

When I visited Detroit last summer I ventured into the neighborhoods outside of its downtown ring. Places like Grixdale. This is a typical 21st century Grixdale block that in 1950 that had twenty homes each with wage earners with fat wallets: Two occupied homes, two abandoned homes, the rest are rubbished filled vacant lots with coarse weeds.

Detroit has some millstones that will impede its recovery. Its commercial property tax rates are the highest in the nation and city services are substandard. Detroiters are burdened with a municipal income tax and possible future Detroit residents who want to dip their toe in the Motor City water by taking a job in the city are subject to a commuter tax. And Detroit is still a very violent city.

Just last week a study was released that discovered that Detroit has the least storefront concentration of any big city.

Look for the Detroit comeback, such as it is, to proceed very slowly.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.


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By:  Pat Austin

SHREVEPORT – It would seem that Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards is off to a rather rocky start as he goes up against the majority Republican Legislature. It appears that the Republicans aren’t going to make life easy for Edwards.

On the campaign trail, Edwards wrapped himself in moderate clothes and won the votes of many Republicans; some of that, in part, was due to the fact that voting for David Vitter was just a peg too far. Many people believed Edwards when he promised to get rid of state education Superintendent John White, a proponent of Common Core.  That is not likely to happen now as Edwards has stacked the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education with White supporters.

Edwards won’t be fighting Common Core any longer either as just last week his office announced that he would no longer pursue the Jindal lawsuit against Common Core. Edwards says that the lawsuit is financially and educationally unnecessary as Louisiana has worked to rewrite the standards.

Immediately after that announcement, the Louisiana Attorney General, Republican Jeff Landry released a statement saying that as Attorney General, he is intervening in that case and only he will decide if that lawsuit goes forward or not, indicating that he is the one, and not the governor, who decides the legal course for the state.

Gov. Edwards has called for a Special Session of the Legislature later this month for the purpose of resolving the looming budget shortfall left by the Jindal administration. Edwards has laid out a staggering list of potential tax increases to solve the problem.  All of the usual tax increases are there including raising taxes on cigarettes, alcohol, income, utilities, property, and so on.

There are no proposals for welfare reform or to cut unnecessary staff and crony positions. As a matter of fact, those Jindal era staff salaries that Edwards criticized on the campaign trail?  He’s keeping those and raising them some.

Again, with a Republican-dominated Legislature, this Special Session wish list might just be a pipe dream, but if nothing else, Gov. Edwards has shown in just a few short weeks his true colors and any Republican that pulled the lever for him, thinking they were getting a moderate Democrat who shared their values, has been proven to be delusional.


Pat Austin blogs at And So it Goes in Shreveport.

Don Fanucci:  This is my neighborhood. You and your friends should show me some respect. You should let me wet my beak a little. I hear you and your friends cleared $600 each. Give me $200 each, for your own protection. And I’ll forget the insult.

The Godfather part 2 1974

Monday evening I was grabbing something at the supermarket when I noticed a headline at the Boston Globe concerning the safety of e cigarettes. As that story is behind a subscription wall I bring you this report from the Washington Examiner instead:

A majority of people say in a new poll that e-cigarettes are harmful to health and should be subject to strict regulations that tobacco cigarettes now face.

The poll, released Monday by Harvard and the Boston Globe’s Stat news service, comes as federal regulators are finalizing a slew of regulations for the burgeoning e-cigarette industry.

Now the first thing that jumped out at me was: WHO CARES?

In terms of evaluating any drug for safety the question isn’t what the general public thinks, the question is what do we actually know.

Now ecigs contain nicotine so if the government wants to judge their safety based on the known risks of nicotine that’s perfectly legit.

But these polls aren’t about public safety, or the data, it’s all about justifying a tax on a product so that the government bureaucracy can wet it’s beak.

The difference between Don Fanucci & the government is Fanucci doesn’t pretend it’s not about feathering his nest.

John ruberry
John “Lee” Ruberry

By John Ruberry

Did you hear about the release of Bill and Hillary Clinton’s returns on from 2007 through 2014 on Friday afternoon?

If you didn’t–well, that was the goal of the Clinton camp. Both political parties do it–disclosing possibly bad news on a Friday afternoon just as reporters are leaving work for the weekend. It’s called a Friday news dump–or a document dump. And since August is a popular vacation month–some of those members of the media will be on the beach instead of at the computer this week. When these reporters return to work–whether it’s Monday or next Monday–they might dismiss the Clinton revelations as old news and neglect to report on it at all

What can we learn from the Clinton returns? Well, they are rich. There is nothing wrong with that–I want to be rich. The once and possibly future first family collected $139 million between ’07 and ’14. But in the last two years–after Hillary resigned as secretary of state, the Clintons collected $23 million in speaking fees in 2013 and $20 million last year. Many of those speeches were given to corporate and special interest groups–who of course may be seeking favored status from a President Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2017.

That’s a big problem because nearly all Americans can’t buy access to a president.

Thirty-five percent of the Clinton income went to federal income taxes–which is something we’ll be hearing a lot about from HRC. But don’t expect Hillary to brag about her family’s charitable giving–which was almost $15 million in the last eight years. Ninety-nine percent of those donations went to the Clinton Foundation–which is in actuatlity a slush fund and a jobs bank for Clinton cronies.

Please spread the news about the Hillary document dump. She doesn’t want other people to know.

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

In the rush of news all over the place Rand Paul’s Tax plan hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves.

Paul is to be commended for putting out a plan with substance but there is a point I’d like to make.

I don’t mind a consumption tax if the income taxes are totally eliminated but if you keep it them both there is a problem and it’s a problem that Chris Christie once talked about concerning New Jersey:

35 years ago we didn’t have an income tax in NJ no income tax like right here in NH, we had no income tax and Governor Brendon Byrne, a democrat said: If you just give me a small income tax, a little one, I will lower your property taxes, we had the highest property taxes in America back in 1977 so 35 years later, what have we got? We’ve STILL got the highest property taxes in America and the income tax that started at 2% under governor Byrne is now 9%

If we have flat income tax AND a VAT what’s going to happen is as soon as democrats get power back (or as soon as the Boehner & his allies want to appease the left) both taxes will be raised.  I’ll give the last word to Randy Barnett

I still don’t like a VAT without killing the privacy-destroying income tax (and IRS) with a silver bullet and stake through its heart.

But still he deserves credit for going there, one must walk before one runs.


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If you didn’t catch it my latest for is The Wages Sin Taxes:

My father always told me that everything cost something.  The current debate on the decisions of both going into Iraq and pulling out when we did has shown that even most noble intentions can have devastating consequences.

You can read the rest including my explanation of said costs here:



As the last hours of tax day pass let me direct you to a pair of tax day piece for your approval.

First:  No Taxation without understanding

During the American Revolution, one of the major objections the colonists had was the taxation by the British crown without having any representation. While the problem of taxation without representation has been solved, it has been replaced by something almost as bad and nearly as destructive: taxation without understanding.

and there are costs for this ignorance

Being illiterate of the tax code has the same effect as actual illiteracy. It makes you dependent on others to tell you what is true and what is false. It allows you to be led. The more complicated the code the easier you are to manipulate. And that’s also why simplifying the tax code will be one of the hardest things to get done; too many people have a vested interest in keeping you in the dark.

Meanwhile with the passing of tax day 2015 we come a year closer to a tax day that Democrats dread:

the so called “Cadillac tax,” which is a 40 percent excise tax on high value health care plans. Like many parts of Obamacare, its implementation was put off to delay opposition.

It’s one of the last big parts of the Affordable Care Act to go into effect — lawmakers delayed the levy until 2018 in part because it is so controversial — but companies are wrestling with it now as they plan employee benefits. Some are already negotiating with unions over benefits that could spill into 2018.

And as my colleague here at Watchdog Arena,  Moe Lane, points out, a lot of people didn’t think it would ever see the light of day

You’ll want to check out both pieces (and Moe’s too.) not to mention the rest of the great stuff at

Section. 7.

All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

Section. 8.

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

The Constitution of the United States

I’d say I was surprised by this, but that would be a lie:

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest confirmed Monday that President Obama is “very interested” in the idea of raising taxes through unitlateral executive action.

“The president certainly has not indicated any reticence in using his executive authority to try and advance an agenda that benefits middle class Americans,” Earnest said in response to a question about Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) calling on Obama to raise more than $100 billion in taxes through IRS executive action.

When you have an administration willing to ignore the bill of rights why would anyone be the slightest bit shocked that such an administration would ignore the explicit language of the constitution.

But while this administrations actions don’t surprise me, that people on the left would be willing to go along, excuse or defend this both surprises & disappoints me.

I would remind them that if one president can toss out one section of the constitution at his convenience another president can eliminate another.

May the nation be happy in the choices it has made.


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My latest for talks about the new Taxes proposed by Barack Obama and how they identify him not as a man pretending to be a king, but as a neighborhood boss:

I’ve seen many portrayals of President Obama as an absolutist king due to his penchant for unilateral policy decisions made over the heads of Congress. Glenn Reynolds often reposts an image of Obama in the likeness of Louis XIV, with the common tagline being “You should be thanking me.”

What I see, however, is a classic graduate of the Chicago school of criminal governance, an old-fashioned neighborhood boss. This sort of boss man attitude is evidenced in Obama’s plan to put into law ten new taxes.

If you want to read the rest including quotes from Casino, Godfather II, Goodfellas, Analyze This and even Chris Christie, you’ll have to go to and check out the Watchdog Arena.

11th Doctor: Merry Christmas, Mister Sardick.
Mr Sardick: I despise Christmas.
11th Doctor You shouldn’t. It’s very you.
Mr Sardick: It’s what? What do you mean?
11th Doctor: Halfway out of the dark

Doctor Who A Christmas Carol 2010

A few days ago Kevin Williamson noted that Duke porn star Belle Knox has decided to enter the political fray as a College Republican:

Miriam Weeks, better known as Belle Knox, even better known as “the Duke porn star,” is sophomoric — but then, she is still a sophomore – and, having stockpiled a supply of that most important American commodity – fame – she has announced her intentions to inflict her sophomoric analysis on the world at large as a political activist, being, as she is, a College Republican of a purportedly libertarian bent.

I and others (most notably Stacy McCain) are on the record critiquing her choices and the long term costs of them to wit:

I don’t agree with Michelle Obama on much but the truest words I ever heard a person speak was this:

The truth is, because of their lack of experience, as a rule young people are in fact knuckleheads. I think their overwhelming support of Mrs. Obama’s husband for president is clear evidence of her contention but it can’t compete with this incredible statement from Ms. Knox/Weeks in an interview:

However there is within this poor career choice an aspect that make Ms. Weeks, Mr. Williamson piece notwithstanding, a person who can speak to one critical aspect of the GOP agenda due to practical experience that most people her age do not have and may never get.

As Stacy Noted Ms Knox age and appearance makes her a “premium productt” in the porn industry.  Her notoriety makes her even more so.

Thus she is at the moment making money most 18-20 year olds do not and because of this she is at this very time encountering a reality that most people her age do not.  The Actual bite of state and federal governments.

As I put it on twitter in a tweet that ironically Ms. Knox favorited:

knox tweet

Ms Weeks is getting a perspective that those young Obama voters still in college will only get if they somehow find well paying jobs in the president’s economy post graduation.  When you are a person making a good paycheck, local state and federal government taxman comes for their share.

One might question just how thrilled Ms Knox is with her profession but I suspect nobody questions her desire to keep the lions share of what she’s paid for it.

It’s because of this fact she could be a highly effective spokesperson to the Obama / Hillary crowd and to those who don’t pay normally pay attention, from feminists who cheer her choice as a slap in the face to morality to men & woman who might “come for the breasts”.  It’s possible such folk who would ignore a Mitt Romney or Kevin Williamson on the folly of over taxation might listen if Belle Knox makes the case against a large government taxing away the money she ahem, sweated for.

You fight a war with the army you have and if Belle Knox can actually persuade some young fools that big government is a bad idea so be it, but there is another potential positive from this scenario.

Consider we have a teen here who is able to resist and / or abandon liberal economic theory in a liberal environment where such ideas are pushed.

Might not such a person capable of learning from experience one side of the conservative coin be able to figure out the other?

She might be rebelling against the church at the moment but the combination of age producing an inevitable declining in her appeal as a barely legal sex object and the almost certain prayers of devout and faithful parents produce epiphany in what she thinks?

It might take years or even decades but she’s half way out of the liberal dark already and when she’s ready to take that second step she’ll find Christ waiting with open arms as Pope Francis has reminded us.

She has the knowledge, what her potential is if she is granted the wisdom is anyones guess?

My latest piece for Is President Obama ‘pulling a Homer’ on energy, or is he smarter than that? is now up:

“To pull a Homer”: to succeed despite idiocy.

In “Homer Defined,” a 1991 episode of The Simpsons, the Springfield nuclear power is going into meltdown.  Homer Simpson (the inept lead character of the series) manages to save the day by choosing the right button to prevent the meltdown.

He is celebrated as a hero until it’s revealed that his choice of which button to press was just pure incompetent luck (eeny, meeny, miny, moe).  This coins the term “pulling a Homer,” whereby a person without wisdom or skill succeeds in spite of their own incompetence.

This is an excellent illustration of what has happened with the economy, both over the last six years and in the past two months of the Obama administration.

Has Barack Obama succeeded, and if so why does he compare unfavorably to Homer Simpson?  Well you’ll have to go to to find out


By A.P. Dillon

Since Obama took office, he’s harped on wealthy Americans needing to pay “their fair share“.  Millionaires need to pay up. Get Warren Buffet and his secretary in here stat!  Some quick examples from over the years:

2011 –  Obama: Rich should pay ‘fair share’ to reduce debt

2012 –  Obama Says All Must Pay ‘Fair Share’ Of Taxes

2013  – The 1-percenter who doesn’t pay his ‘fair share’ – President Obama

In 2014, all this ‘fair share’ squeezing began to have consequences. Corporations revolted and started running for cover. The response was Obama calling them ‘deserters’ and Jack Lew calling for more ‘economic patriotism’.

All this ‘fair sharing’ was just about millionaires, until now.  Enter Obama’s “middle class economics“.

Now, the President wants to tax 529 education accounts — the very accounts that millions of non-millionaire Americans count on to fund the higher education aspirations of their children.  Obama wants to tax these account like ordinary income.

Glenn Reynolds’s column at USA Today this week covered this move on 529 accounts:

Though millions of Americans have been putting money into “tax free” 529 plans to save for their children’s increasingly expensive college educations, President Obama would change the law so that withdrawals from the plans to fund college would be taxed as ordinary income. So while you used to be able to get a nice tax benefit by saving for college, now you’ll be shelling out to Uncle Sam every time you withdraw to pay for Junior’s dorm fees.

This doesn’t hurt the very rich — who just pay for college out of pocket — or the poor, who get financial aid, but it’s pretty rough on the middle– and upper–middle class. In a double-whammy, those withdrawals will show up as income on parents’ income tax forms, which are used to calculate financial aid, making them look richer, and hencereducing grants.

Read the whole thing.

So Obama wants to tax 529 education accounts that the middle class depend on. Now let’s go back and remember the announcement Obama made about making Community College “free”.

Obama has proposed to make it a ‘cost sharing’ with the states scenario. One has to ask oneself, when has a ‘cost sharing’ scenario with the federal government ever worked to the benefit of the states?  *crickets*

Nothing is “free”. The money has to come from somewhere. CNBC points out this fact and actually called this move ‘insane‘.

One could argue that this taxing of 529 accounts could possibly go to help pay for Obama’s “free” Community College idea.  Under the guise of paying your “fair share”, arguably what is really going on here is a redistribution of your child’s education fund to pay for the education of others.

If you enjoyed this article, you should really check out other pieces written by Da Tech Guy’s Magnificent Seven writers and maybe hit that tip jar!

AP DillonA.P. Dillon (Lady Liberty 1885), is a Conservative minded wife and mother living in the Triangle area of North Carolina. A.P. Dillon founded the blog in 2009. After the 2012 election, she added an Instapundit style blog called The ConMom Blog. Mrs. Dillon recently participated in Glenn Beck’sWe Will Not Conform. Mrs. Dillon’s writing, in addition to Da Tech Guy’s Magnificent 7, can also be found at, WatchdogWireNC and WizBang. Non-political writing projects include science fiction novellas that are, as of yet, unpublished. Her current writing project is a children’s book series.

There is a debate between two people I admire concerning President Obama’s tax plans.

Glenn suggests the GOP should call the president bluff citing a piece by Megan McArdle 

there are a lot of affluent-but-hardly-wealthy folks in blue states who would be very unhappy to hear that that nice Westchester home Mom and Dad bought for $15,000 in 1952 is going to be subject to a capital gains tax — at the same time as they’re suddenly paying income taxes on the capital gains and dividends in little Sally’s college account. . . .

Taxing the earnings on college savings accounts is even stranger, both because this hits the middle class, and because if you tax the earnings, there’s not all that much point to having the account; essentially, Obama is taxing college savings accounts in order to fund universal community college. This is scraping the bottom of the barrel, and what it tells you is that Obama has already run through most of the practical and politically palatable ways to tax the affluent.

And added this opinion:

Yeah, this will hurt Blue State types harder, but hey, they voted for Obama. This is a win-win: He gets the blame, or he vetoes it.

Ed Driscoll disagrees and makes a good point:

As with Democrats talking George H.W. Bush into raising taxes in 1990, one huge danger to this sort of game is that Democrats will play along in 2015 and then run ads like the above the following year directed towards the individual GOP senators and congressmen who raised taxes:

While those individual ads are a good point Ed misses the real argument that makes this a non-starter.

Ronald Reagan.

Why does Reagan matter here because while the Democrats hate Reagan almost as much as they hate actual Christianity (as opposed to pseudo Christianity that doesn’t actually believe anything) he is their goto guy for justifying many of the things they do.  Ironically while Reagan knew that with enemies one must “trust but verify” Reagan never figured out that congressional democrats were among them.

Ronald Reagan made a deal with Democrats to Raise Taxes and Cut Spending, they did the first but not the second.  This deception not only served the needs of Tip & the rest of the caucus at the time but for twenty years every time Democrats want to justify a new tax they point to Reagan signing the Democrat Tax increases of the 80’s

The fact that this was his side of the bargain, that it was the Democrats who insisted on these tax increases and broke their word (surprise surprise) never seems to come up as far as the liberal left of today is concerned these are the Reagan Tax increases as if Democrats had nothing to do with them at all.

But that’s not the only Reagan Example there is also Amnesty.

Democrats played the very same game, Ronald Reagan made a deal, in return for border enforcement he would make legal millions who had violated law to come here.  Once again he kept his side of the deal and the Democrats keeping the same game plan did not.

And to no one’s surprise today’s Democrats conveniently forget both their betrayal of Reagan and their passage of Amnesty  As far as they are concerned it is Reagan’s Amnesty and that’s that.

So what does this tell us about any possible deal with the left on the Obama Tax increases?

1.  The Democrats will not keep to any deal made, Harry reid has already acted in bad faith and anyone who thinks this President or administration will enforce any parts of any law passed that he doesn’t like deserves all the trouble they get from it..

2.  Not only will the Democrats use the GOP’s passing of tax increases in campaign ads as Ed suggested but if the GOP is foolish enough to go along with this every single media outlet from this point on will classify these not as the Obama tax increases but the Republican tax increases.


So I”m going to have to go with Ed on this one.

My Magnificent Seven colleague A.P. Dillon tweeted this morning,

Which brought up the question in my mind, Were taxes an issue in the 2014 midterm election?

Obamacare, as Chief Justice Roberts ruled, is a tax, and it appears to have been a factor in last November’s election, since half of the Senators who voted for Obamacare won’t be part of new Senate.

Obamacare aside, voters at the polls did not appear to be directly energized by the issue of taxes.

The key word is directly.

Indirectly, however, things are happening:

The US Census Bureau announced last week that New York slipped to fourth place in population among the 50 states.

Though babies are still born here every day, and immigrants still flock in, overall population growth lags because New Yorkers are abandoning the state.

Don’t blame the weather. Blustery Montana and North Dakota aren’t having this problem. New Yorkers are escaping high taxes and dismal job growth.

Other high-tax states like Illinois and New Jersey, which has the country’s second-highest tax burden, are also hemorrhaging residents. Families are uprooting and moving to places with lower taxes, more growth and fossil-fuel-friendly policies.

The residents who fled the high-state taxes essentially gave up on changing the local and state politics, so they picked up and left.

So are New Jerseyans. Despite having a Republican governor, they’re among the most taxed Americans, and nearly 200,000 decamped in the last four years in search of a better deal.

New Jersey, for instance, has some of the highest school and local taxes in the country; then you have state income taxes – and how has that worked out?

New Jersey was a high-growth state until it added an income tax in 1976.

And, if you die in New Jersey, your estate gets to pay estate taxes and your heirs pay inheritance taxes.

Not to mention all the taxes your business has to pay the State, on top of the costs of conducting business in N.J.

“But governor Christie’s a Republican!” you may respond. A fat lot of good that has done (all puns intended).

I ought to know. I upped and moved to Florida six months ago.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

I was in my friend Rick Moran’s November 5th Election Night Extravaganza podcast, and among the many topics we discussed, I mentioned that I relocated from Princeton, NJ to Miami, FL a few months ago. Rick asked me why, and I gave the totally honest, simple answer, “Taxes.”

I went on to explain that at the time I sold it, I was paying $16,000 in annual real estate and school taxes on my house. You also add to that NJ’s income tax, and, in the long term, estate and inheritance taxes, and yes, the answer is, Taxes.

I was scheduled to be in Rick’s podcast for a half hour but stayed on, and, after my reply, Jazz Shaw diverted the conversation to the question, were taxes an issue in the last election? Jazz and the other guest seemed to agree they weren’t.

For people like myself, whose child(ren) are grown and out of the house, who have family in low-tax states, and whose occupations are not tied to a location due to freelancing, travel, or even retirement, taxes are an issue when we decide to vote with our feet. Not the only issue, but a very important issue.

For people whose children are in local public/private schools which they like, with relatives (especially elderly parents) nearby, and in full-time local jobs, local taxes are a penury they continue to endure, since the purpose of the tax-payed bureaucracies is to expand themselves in every way. To them, as it was with me for years, life starts – as the Rabbi in the punchline* said – “when the kids leave the house and the dog dies.”

According to this article, which looked at data from a study by the Tax Foundation (a Washington, DC-based taxpayer advocacy group)

Turns out when it comes to taxes, less is more. Here are some of the conclusions drawn from the study. Keep in mind, the latest data used is from 2010. In the years since, many states have raised or lowered their tax rates, but those changes aren’t reflected here:

  • Collectively, the nine states that have no personal income tax – Alaska, Florida, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming – gained $146.2 billion in AGI.
  • And collectively, the areas with the highest personal income tax – California, Hawaii, Oregon, Iowa, New Jersey, Vermont, New York, Maine, and Washington, DC – lost $107.4 billion AGI.
  • Looked at another way, the ten states* with the lowest per capita state and local tax burden netted an increase of $69.9 billion in AGI. The ten states** with the highest state and local tax burden per capita lost a whopping $139 billion in AGI.

But, were taxes really not an issue in the last election?

How about Obamacare? Was Obamare an issue in this election?

What are the headlines saying?

Democrats’ electoral disaster puts Obamacare in serious peril

The Supreme Court said Obamare is a tax, after all.

[* The joke goes,
A Catholic priest, a Protestant minister, and a Rabbi walk into a bar. The bartender asks, “when does life start?”
The priest says, “Life starts at conception.”
The minister says, “Life starts at birth.”
The Rabbi says, “Lie starts when the kids leave the house and the dog dies.”]

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

Just after the election I made the point that the reason the Earned Sick Time ballot question (Question 4) passed while the Gas Tax (Question 1) & the bottle bill (Question 2) did not was because consumers didn’t see the costs of the former directly while they saw the costs of the latter.

Most voters didn’t understand what it means to supermarkets like Market Basket Restaurants like Singapore and even pizzeria’s like Espresso’s in fact all you might see if you are a bagger, a busboy or a pizza driver all you know is you’ve just got an hour of paid sicktime for every 30 hours you work up to a maximum of one paid 40 hour “sick” week a year. That’s likely why it passed by almost 400,000 votes.

Even when the supermarket inch up their prices the Restaurant cuts your hours and the pizza place decides not to hire the votes won’t make the connection that the cost of that effective 2-3% pay raise that you forced them to give is going to have to come from somewhere.

That disconnect from reality is why the same “highly educated” voters who repealed the onerous Gas tax can re-elect almost every single state senator and representative who voted to impose it upon them without batting an eyelash.

Thursday yet another Jonathan Gruber story appeared in a location other than the MSM which I suspect will give it a passing mention on Saturday for the sake of saying they mentioned it.

This post at Breitbart focused , as most such pieces have,  on the deception involved in the passage of Obamacare, but the video they embedded accidentally makes my question 4 point that is worth highlighting.

Gruber names John Kerry as one of the Heroes of Obamacare by shifting the argument from a tax on individuals insurance plans something impossible to a tax on “The Insurance Companies” (emphasis mine)

John Kerry said, No No. we’re not going to tax your health insurance we’re going to tax those evil insurance companies. Where going to impose a tax because if sell health insurance that’s too expensive we’re going to tax them and conveniently the tax rate will happen to be the marginal tax rate (inaudible). So basically it’s the same thing. We just tax the Insurance companies they pass on higher prices that offsets the tax break we get, so it ends up being the same thing. It’s a very clever, you know, basic exploitation of the lack of economic understanding of the American Voter.

Do you see the lesson here? Gruber is kindly explaining the point I was making least week, a point that conservatives have been trying to get through to the american people for decades.

Higher taxes on business is simply a tax on consumers

In fact it’s even worse.  It’s almost certain that any price increase will be higher than the tax.

A while back a man in the delivery business explained it.  He needed to increase his margins but didn’t want to increase his base price, the gas price spike solved that problem for him.  As gas prices soared he had to make up the price so he added a “gas surcharge” and incorporated the margin increase into the surcharge.  Since the customers knew gas prices were going up they didn’t blink an eye at the high price and viola a hidden price increase.

Do you think for one moment that insurance companies forced to increase prices because of Obamacare didn’t do the same?

If I’m a conservative leader I use this clip from every single time the left tries to increase taxes on the “Evil [insert business here]” and use it to teach the uninformed voters two things.

1.  A Tax on business is a tax on you

2.  The left has been using you as a bunch of suckers for decades.

If Jonathan Gruber’s Obamacare speeches allow us to teach that lesson to the country maybe someday a GOP leader will give a speech calling him the hero of the tax reform movement.


Olimometer 2.52

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Illinois flag on right
Illinois flag on right

By John Ruberry

Illinois, or at least its major newspapers, is finally waking up.

Nearly 12 years of Democratic rule in Illinois has brought debt, continued corruption, the nation’s worst-funded state pension system, and high unemployment.

Most polls show the race between incumbent Pat Quinn and Republican newcomer Bruce Rauner to be a dead heat, although the latest poll on the race shows Quinn with only 40 percent support–which is a terrible position for ant incumbent to be in.

Quinn of course does not have a decent record to run on, so he is taking a page from Obama 2012 playbook by attacking Rauner for being a successful rich businessman.  The Chicago Democrat, who twice was Rod Blagojevich’s running mate, narrowly defeated his Republican challenger in 2010, Bill Brady, who ran a awful campaign. Back then Quinn stumped for a slight increase in the state income tax, but in a lame duck session, the Democrat-controlled General Assembly passed a “temporary” 67 percent hike in the personal income tax rate and a 45 percent hump in the corporate rate.Rauner sign

Quinn now claims that he never said that his tax hikes, which are stifling Illinois’ economy, were temporary–but videotape, unlike Quinn, does not lie. The tax increases expire at the end of the year–but Quinn plans another lame duck assault on Prairie State wallets.

Rauner instead envisions tax reform, a loosening of Illinois’ onerous workers compensation system, and extensive pension reform  as part of his rescue plan for the state’s 12.8 million residents. He looks to Indiana’s successful former governor Mitch Daniels as a role model for a Rauner administration.

As for Quinn, he’s not fooling the editorial boards of Illinois’ major newspapers. So far Rauner has earned endorsements from the Chicago Tribune, Crain’s Chicago Business, the Daily Herald, the Belleville News-Democrat, the Champaign News-Gazette, and the Peoria Journal Star.

Chicago sunrise
Chicago sunrise

Three years ago the Chicago Sun-Times said they would stop endorsing candidates, but yesterday the paper all but said they were getting back into the game only so it could declare its support for Rauner. The paper is making no other endorsements this fall.

I held my nose and visited Quinn’s campaign site and clicked on the endorsements link. It’s dominated by unions and other predictably liberal groups. But according to my research and Quinn’s site, as of this writing, not a single Illinois newspaper has endorsed the Chicago Democrat for another term.

It’s time for the rest of the Land of Lincoln to wake up for Morning in Illinois and throw Quinn out of office.

John Ruberry, a fifth generation Illinoisan, regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.

faustaI lived in the North East for most of my life, having moved to the region right after graduating from college; first, upstate New York, then, New Jersey.

New Jersey, contrary to what the despicable Woody Allen thinks, is a beautiful state, home to the wealthiest zip code in the United States. I was blessed to have owned houses not in that zip code, but in Morristown, Convent Station, and Princeton, three towns that are affluent and charming.

My son is a true Princeton native, having been born, raised, and lived in the town (and township, before consolidation), who, once it was time for college, went away to his top college choice, graduating with honors this year. Because of his occupation he must live in New York City – otherwise he would subject himself to a very long commute at all hours of the night. Like both his parents, he is ready to make his own way into the world.

At the same time, my mom is in her nineties and lives in Florida, and I must spend time with her. Most of my relatives live in Florida.

While all this was going on, my real estate taxes went up by $2,000 last year, a 14% increase, bringing the total to $16,000 in annual real estate taxes. While the law says that there’s a 2% ceiling on annual property tax increases, there are a plethora of reasons why your property will get whammed with more (for instance, if you do certain improvements on your property). Properties are assessed at market value, which means that your assessment may go up now that the market is up, so your tax bill increases, while the tax rate itself has remained unchanged. And on and on.

Fighting such increases is expensive – you need to hire a lawyer – and time consuming, and the odds are it may not work.

Then there’s what lurks in the horizon: School taxes make up 1/2 of the total property tax bill (the current budget is $86.9 million), and the school district wants an additional $100 million for sundry projects, which they are likely to get. After all, a prior $100 million was approved ten years ago. Such an increase in debt brings more tax increases.

And let’s not forget that New Jersey has a 7% sales tax, a state income tax, inheritance taxes, and estate taxes.

So I sat down, did a rough calculation of what it was costing me to stay in New Jersey versus what it would cost to move to Florida, which has a 7% sales tax but no state income tax, no inheritance taxes, and no estate taxes. Florida won.

It looks like I’m not alone:
Northeast loses 40% of House seats as people flee high-tax states

The Census Bureau reports that population growth has shifted to the South and the result is that the 11 states that make up the Northeast are being bled dry of representation in Washington.

The 11 states that make up the Northeast have been bleeding dry their constituents, so many of us did the numbers, talked to our families, and moved.

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

by Fausta Rodriguez Wertz

Ah, Warren Buffett. The Oracle of Omaha, loved by American liberals every time he claims to be paying a lower rate than his secretary (which was debunked, by the way), the guy after whom the Buffett rule is named. Buffett orchestrated Burger King Worldwide Inc.’s acquisition of Tim Hortons Inc. (a coffee-and-doughnut chain), and Burger King will move its Miami, FL, headquarters to lower-tax Canada. BK’s operational headquarters will remain in Miami (emphasis added):

If the deal goes through, Berkshire will end up paying taxes on its income from the preferred securities at the 35% U.S. corporate tax rate, rather than the 14%, after deductions, that an insurance company such as Berkshire would be liable for under the originally envisioned structure.

Mr. Buffett, who helped finance 3G Capital’s buyout of H.J. Heinz Co. last year and has said publicly he would like to team up again, negotiated a deal that would cover the cost of Berkshire’s higher tax bill, the person familiar with his thinking said. He wanted Berkshire to be compensated for the more than $50 million in additional taxes it would pay because of the planned move to Canada.

Buffett managed a deal that not only minimizes the corporate tax rate, it actually compensates Berkshire for the taxes it would pay because of the move.


Of course, his fans still assert that No, Warren Buffett Is Not a Tax Hypocrite on Burger King, since

suggestions of hypocrisy ring false because Buffett has never, ever held himself out as person who pays more taxes than he has to. The whole point of his story about his tax rate vs. his secretary’s is that he was allowed to pay less than he thought he should. He never said he was writing a check to the Treasury to make up the difference.

Back in 2012 I was pointing out that

Until Warren coughs up his personal tax returns, we should dismiss anything he says as hypocritical propaganda.

What I left out is, hypocritical propaganda coming from a firm believer in crony capitalism.

The issue is that of competitiveness. Canada is attracting investors because of its lower corporate tax rates. In the U.S. we have the highest corporate tax rate in the world; the convoluted, Byzantine tax code forces businesses to spend millions of dollars that could otherwise be used for research and development, salaries and manpower, equipment, and investment. Businesses have the obligation to legally maximize their investment. If that means moving overseas, they do.

As one of the commenters in the Wall Street Journal said, “Money goes where it is well treated.”

In the meantime, did anyone find out if Berkshire Hathaway paid up the taxes it owed since 2002?

Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics and culture at Fausta’s Blog.

I spent some time in the Vendor area at CPAC but because of the scarlet M it was rather tough to get interviews.

One group that did talk to me was the National Taxpayers Union Foundation.

Their web site is here.

I talked to local activist Steve Aylward at the RNC Boston who is leading a move to put the new MA gas tax on the ballot.

If there was ever a law worth getting rid of it’s this one. On the flip side it has been suggested to me that this ballot measure is a mistake as it might energize the unions come election day. We will see.

Today in Gardner MA Kirsten Hughes the Chairwoman of the Massachusetts GOP joined a small standout local standout in the center of town to increase awareness of the new increases in the state Gas Tax:

The small group held signs and got a generally positive reception from drives who came by

Former state rep Rich Bastein showed up a little way into the event

various photos 017

and spoke to me.

as did another one of the protesters

The entire tax increase didn’t get the media it deserved and this was a small standout but there is something I’d like to say about it.

I heard about the standout a few days ago, it was going to be a very small thing with local activists, just a few people some tea party from the local area trying to make the point so I was prepared to cover it with that understanding.

That Kirsten Hughes the GOP party chair took the time to join this small event in Gardner, far from Boston and the camera of the MSM to stand with these activists says something about her and what it says is very positive.

This type of local interest is exactly what is needed to grow the party in this state, plant the seeds.

Well done. More please.


Olimometer 2.52

Did a lot of driving today and with the higher gas tax that weekly paycheck is more important than ever.

as of this moment I’m $204 shy. Might there be 10 souls willing to kick in that $20 each to put me over the top?

.did a lot of driving today

This week’s subscription Commentary is titled Pallets:

You might be surprised at how important a Pallet company might be to everyday life and more importantly what the costs are of raising their costs, but that’s for the full commentary.

If you’d like to see the entire commentary and find out well you COULD hit DaTipJar for any amount

and I’ll send you the link to the commentary soon as I see the confirmation e-mail.

Or Subscribe at any level

And every week you’ll get the commentaries before this teaser even makes it up on the site.

Yesterday I led with the Indexing of the Gas Tax that is included in this years budget bill.

It’s the worst of all possible taxes because it will automatically go up every single year without the necessity of a single vote by a member of our 82% Democrat legislature.

We get one chance to stop the indexing of gas tax increases forever, just one because if this budget is passed with the indexed tax it will not only never be repealed but it will be used as a political tool for years to come…by Democrats!

Here’s how it works: Lets say this bill passes and next year by some miracle voter anger in Massachusetts over the tax boils over to the point where people actually consider to voting members out of office who supported it.

Thanks to the outcry a vote to repeal comes to the floor and naturally all 32 GOP House members vote to get rid of this law.

That still leaves them 49 votes shy of a majority.

So what do Democrat party leaders do? They identify the members out of the remaining 128 who are actually in danger of losing seats knowing they can free a full 36% to vote for repeal. Suddenly 20, 30 even 40 democrats announce they’ve had a change of heart, they talk about how it was a bad idea and go on TV and radio promising to vote for repeal. They manage to get their totals all the way up to 47 democrats and the roll call vote takes place on the house with 47 democrats joining the 32 house republicans to junk this odious tax…

…and repeal fails 81-79.

But lets say somehow, by some miracle the voters are actually aroused the speaker, worried not only about his pending indictment (No democrat is allowed to be speaker of the Massachusetts House without a pending indictment) actually fears the GOP might have a 50-1 shot of getting to that magic 81 seats and wrest the gavel from the party for practically the first time in generations and decides to left enough of his members vote for repeal to actually clear the House…

…then it goes to the Senate where the numbers are even worse.

Of the 40 Senate Seats the GOP holds exactly 4. 4. That means the President of the Senate can allow 36 of the 76 members of the democrat caucus, nearly half, to vote in favor of repeal without fear of its passage.

And all of this presumes both sides are worried about a Governor who would actually sign a repeal. Even if both houses somehow decided it was politically necessary to vote to repeal Governor Patrick or the next Democrat to follow him will veto it, to “protect our roads and bridges”.

The worst part about it. This entire exercise can be repeated on an annual basis, with a few votes shifting here and there as different members find themselves in trouble in different years. They’ll be a whole crop of Democrats on TV, in Speeches, on the Radio and in the papers pointing to their repeal vote as proof they the care…a vote that will mean nothing.

And why will they do this? Because they will assume voters in Massachusetts foolish enough to re-elect them after they voted for the initial indexing of taxes will be foolish enough to believe such nonsense…

…And they’ll be right.

Olimometer 2.52

This is the difference between this blog and the Massachusetts House. Most members have no fear of losing their seat no matter how they vote, while I have to earn your support on a daily or weekly basis to make that paycheck to stay afloat

If you think I’m earning it this week, then I’d appreciate it if you consider hitting DaTipJar below.

and consider this, if just 121 of our tens of thousands of monthly readers subscribed for just $10 a month. This daily tip jar shake can fade away appearing only for road trips or emergencies.

Scarecrow: What happened?
Cowardly Lion: Somebody pulled my tail.
Scarecrow: You did it yourself.

The Wizard of Oz 1939

Via Right Wing Granny Massachusetts continues to jump the Shark of Liberalism:

Right now, a committee consisting of 3 House and 3 Senate members are meeting to negotiate the differences between the two tax bills. It is not a matter if the gas tax is increasing it is a matter of how much and how often.

What do I mean?

If the tax package is signed into law the gas tax will be forever linked to inflation. It is the gas tax increase “to infinity and beyond.” In other words, there will be an automatic gas tax increase every year. And the legislature never has to vote to raise it again. How convenient. But for the rest of us, it means taxation without representation.

Because NOTHING says a state is open for business than a tax indexed to inflation automatically raised year after year. As the Right Wing Granny put it:

If the bill being discussed is passed, the State of Massachusetts can automatically raise gasoline taxes without a vote by the legislature. Therefore, no one has to go on the record and be held accountable for the tax increase. This is a liberal lawmaker’s dream and a taxpayer’s nightmare.

If I’m Gov Rick Perry of Texas I’d be running ads on every TV & Radio station in the state suggesting they re-locate to Texas and I’d be sending a thank you note to every single member of the state’s house and senate delegation who votes for this bill.

Considering our willingness as a state to keep electing these idiots I don’t see how we motivate them to stop.


Olimometer 2.52

While it might be easier to just leave Massachusetts as I advise my newly graduated magna cum laude business major son to do. Somebody has to stay here to fight the fight.

Being able to stay and fighting means being able to pay the mortgage and that were the $305 a week goal and you come in.

If you’d like to help me fight that fight by ensuring I can make my newly increased mortgage bill consider hitting DaTipJar below to make this weeks paycheck.

Sheldon: 60 only takes me to here. I need to get to here.

Leonard: What’s there?

Sheldon: The earliest estimate of the singularity, when man will be able to transfer his consciousness into machines and achieve immortality.

Leonard: So, you’re upset about missing out on becoming some sort of freakish self-aware robot?

Sheldon: By this much.

The Big Bang Theory The Cruciferous Vegetable Amplification 2010

I have a bone to pick with GOP candidate Gabriel Gomez.

No it’s not with the fact that he is a Hispanic Republican with a great personal story a history of service to this country, a record of success in business, not a career politician promising to vote based on getting things done rather than on party lines.

Those are all great reasons to vote for him next month.

It’s about this latest ad on Ed Markey and raising Taxes:

Now the average conservative might see this ad and say:  “What’s wrong with it?”

Do I have a problem with saying Ed Markey have voted to raise taxes 271 times?   No.

Do I have an issue with the suggestion that if elected to the US Senate Ed Markey is likely to embrace every tax hike that comes down the pike as long as he can?  No.

Do I have an issue with saying Ed Markey have Voted for higher business taxes, personal taxes, special taxes, gas taxes?  No

I wouldn’t even have an issue if the ad suggested Markey would support taxes ON taxes.

My problem is with the phrase: “For an unlimited time”

Yes: Ed Markey has on average voted to raise taxes once every 49.05 days for the last 36+ years.

Yes: Ed Markey if he is elected to the Senate and serves as long as Strom Thurmond did will, based on his current average up vote for higher taxes at least another 250 times.

But unless the likelihood of a breakthrough concerning the singularity changes dramatically the 66-year-old Markey will NOT survive long enough to get there.

As true as the ad is otherwise, we can’t assume a voting democrat will mean we’ll eventually get a Robotized Ed Markey in the Senate casting votes for higher taxes forever and ever…

…but why take the chance?


Vote Gabriel Gomez for US Senate

Because when it comes to raising taxes there IS no functional difference between a liberal democrat & a freakish self aware robot!

Update: If Ed Markey WAS a freakishly self aware Robot he would be able to remember if he ever opposed a tax increase in 30+ years:

Via Michael Graham who nails it:

The perfect US Senator for Massachusetts:

That my friends is up to you.

4th Doctor:  Why did you run?

Leela:  Well, he ran first!

4th Doctor:  Well that’s no answer.

Leela:  Why did you run?

4th Doctor:  I don’t know, Odd isn’t it?

Leela:  Perhaps everyone runs from the tax man.

Doctor Who The Sunmakers 1977

A lot of people around the net are cheering Benghazi finally making it to the MSM, in fact in yesterday’s post I noted that it was the persistent efforts of many on the net that helped us get to this point.

The media is doing it’s best to counter that argument to the point of near idiocy but the more I think about it the more I believe the MSM doesn’t mind, because as much as they dislike the conversation being on Benghazi, they simply CAN’T have the conversation be on the IRS.

Why?  Consider: Benghazi, for all of the justified outrage doesn’t touch most of the country.  How many people actually understand the situation in Libya?  You have Military families, less that 1% of the population maybe people in the diplomatic corps or those interested in the subject.  Not many folks at all.  Seventy years ago it would be different but it’s 2013 not 1943 and the people just aren’t the same.

Even for those who has sympathy for the dead there is little or nothing for them to identify with.  It may upset people in the abstract, but they simply can’t relate.

The IRS scandal, that’s totally different.

In song, in pop culture, on TV in movies fear of the tax man is a meme that has been pushed for decades.  You could never watch a newscast in your life and you can understand it.

There are very few thing the entire country has in common anymore fear of the tax man, is one of them.

And this fear crosses all boundaries of race, creed, religion, sexual orientation, class or region.

Every single person who owns a business, every person who works and all the people they know are familiar with the worry the tax man brings.  Even if they have never had tax problems themselves they know people who have.

Nothing is more dangerous than a scandal that is both easy to understand and touches a basic fear most people have.  That type of thing motivates voters and brings down governments.

If you are the administration, this has to be stopped at all costs.



Olimometer 2.52

It’s Monday. Last week we hit my $300 paycheck in record time making it by Tuesday. Is there any chance we can beat that record. That’s your call.

My opinion on taxes in Massachusetts and the general court that votes for them is well-known but I do have one thing to say about the Massachusetts DOR.

You’ve GOT to love their online filing system.

If you qualify (and odds are you will) you can e-file through the site for free and the e-file system is elegant and easy.

You can save easily, jump back easily, double-check easily and before you submit see a PDF version as if you had filed by paper.

I have a lot of words to say when the state does something wrong, so I’m obliged to say something when they do something right.

When it comes to online filing, Mass DOR does it right, take a bow.

Christine Morabito plugs the big upcoming Tea Party Tax day event at Boston Common at the Michael Graham event last week.

Details of the April 13th event are here.

On Friday my first post of the day talked about how the LOW figure of the Obama years that the left considers so draconian was an incredible increase in spending.

At noontime I pointed out that even if you adjust for inflation the low year of the Obama spending years (2010) compared to the low year of the Bush years (2001) represented a 34% increase in real spending.

However a REAL clever person of the left might look at this and say:

“You can’t fool me DaTechGuy, your figures are all before 9/11 and the war on terror, of COURSE the Obama years cost more because you are comparing them to a year where spending didn’t include all those horrible Bush wars.”

It’s a fair cop (and a point I often make myself) and yes I did it deliberately for two reasons.

1. I wanted to compare the low years of each president, and 2001 was the low Bush year

2. It’s a trap for you oh leftists


So let’s look at this using a different year, 2005, two wars going on, Bush re-elected and all that jazz. That 2005 spending adjusted for inflation comes up to


If we compare that adjusted for inflation figure with the smallest Obama spending year EVAH! $3,456 Billion dollars we find it is 83.17% of What Barack Obama spent.

That means Barack Obama in 2010 spent over 20% MORE than George Bush did at the height of two wars in 2005.

Ok all you 18-30 year olds that’s only 8 years ago. You were all alive then. If you were born in 1995 or later you can relate to this.

Are we 20% better off than 2005?
Is your government doing 20% more?
Do we have 20% more roads and bridges?
If the government doing 20% more to help you find work?
Have we managed to do 20% more in all those things?

And yet if we went back to that figure, as far as the president, the Democrat Senate and the MSM is concerned, we would be having cuts so draconian that humanity might not survive.

How stupid do they think we are?  Pretty damn stupid, but the truth is we’re not stupid, just uninformed.

Not anymore.


Olimometer 2.52

It’s Monday the $300 paycheck stands waiting to be filled.   Can we fill it today so I won’t have to worry about it on my 25th anniversary tomorrow?

Up to you.

Scotty: There’s an old, old saying on earth, Mr. Sulu: “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.”

Chekov: I know this saying. It was invented in Russia.

Star Trek: Friday’s Child 1967

I keep hearing on Morning Joe how Andrew Cuomo is making NY more business friendly. I’m having trouble reconciling that with this story out of NY:

The $2 billion income tax increase isn’t due to expire until 2014, but that’s an election year. The proposal being considered in closed-door talks was first revealed last week by The Associated Press citing officials close to the talks who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to divulge the effort.

Hold on a minute. A $2,000,000,000 income tax increase? That can’t be so. This is the state of Andrew Cuomo, the model of making NY business friendly, famed Conservative Joe Scarborough said so. He certainly doesn’t have his fingerprints on this …

On Sunday night, Senate Republican leader Dean Skelos said extending the income tax on millionaires is Cuomo’s idea.

…ok maybe he DOES but apparently I’m looking at this the wrong way. this isn’t really a tax increase, it’s a TAX CUT.

Cuomo then passed a supposedly temporary tax on high-earning New Yorkers that was due to end next year, but now, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported Thursday, that’s not going to happen.

“There will be an extension of the surcharge set to expire next year,” Cuomo said Thursday.

And when asked at if that wasn’t hypocritical, given his prior no-new-taxes positions, Cuomo tried to paint the tax hike as a tax cut, since the budget also provides the middle class with a $350 child tax rebate.

“Some taxes go up, yes, and others go down and the net is they go down. That’s why it’s a tax cut,” Cuomo said.

Let me get this straight, if I have a supermarket and I raise the price on meat if I drop the price on cookies I can call the prince increase on meat a price drop because cookies cost less? Are New Yorkers really falling for this?

I’m going to give the last word to Chris Christie who said this about democrats and tax increases last year on the campaign trail:

“35 years ago we didn’t have an income tax in NJ no income tax like right here in NH, we had no income tax and Governor Brendon Byrne, a democrat said: If you just give me a small income tax, a little one, I will lower your property taxes, we had the highest property taxes in America back in 1977 so 35 years later, what have we got? We’ve STILL got the highest property taxes in America and the income tax that started at 2% under governor Byrne is now 9%”

Anyone who believes or says he believes a temporary tax hike proposed by a democrat is actually temporary is either a fool or a con man.

Hey lets elect this Cuomo guy president!

Update: Of course you have a much better chance of lower taxes if you are bringing a certain television show that they governor likes.


Olimometer 2.52
Next week is Good Friday based on DaTipJar this one is not

If I can find 14 people to kick in that $20 to get that $300 weekly paycheck tit would be better friday, and if I got at least 5 people then I’d beat my worst week ever which is something.

So if you’d like fell free to hit DaTipJar below, unlike Cuomo you know what you’re buying.

One of the basic rules of economics is supply and demand.

If there is an excessive quantity of an item its relative value drops, this applies not just to basic products and services, but to things such as the money supply.

Likewise if you have an item in short supply, it because more valuable and the holder of that valuable item, commodity or service can pick and choose among offers to their advantage.

This is true of jobs. Jobs are a valuable commodity, employers produce tax revenue, pay for infrastructure and allow produces to be produced in an area but most of all they attract the most valuable commodity of all, people.

Now I’ve been led to understand that there has been a shortage of jobs around this country over the last 4 years, but apparently I’ve been mistaken. Because in state after state we see the elected governments deciding they are a commodity that doesn’t need to be attracted.


Shrugging off the fiscal caution of recent years, Governor Deval Patrick proposed a $1.9 billion tax increase tonight in his State of the Commonwealth address, saying it was necessary for the state to invest more in education and the state’s transportation network to “accelerate growth and expand opportunity.”

Who knew Massachusetts was doing so well they didn’t need to attract jobs? Who knew that people like my oldest son, about to graduate from College in May after 4 solid years on the deans list, with decades of earning potential ahead of him is so common we can tax him by the mile.

And the good times are not restricted to the bay state.


P.A.T. Products, an international distributor of specialty chemicals, plastic and raw materials, has been based in Bangor for 39 years.

Leo Coyle, the company’s founder and president, told the Bangor Daily News he is moving the company’s corporate headquarters to the Pease International Tradeport in Portsmouth, N.H., because of that state’s more attractive tax structure and to be closer to his markets.

39 years in Maine, why move now?

“I’m not trying to bash Maine,” he said, adding that it’s a great place to raise children. But during his 40 years living in the state, he said he has become frustrated by what he sees as Maine’s attitude toward business and industry.

“Until the state of Maine gets their act together, there’ll be more and more and more people leaving. I’ve been watching it for 40-plus years. What do I see? I see people saying they can’t take it anymore. I’m not alone,”

Who knew Maine was doing so well they could spare him? Lets be fair, the legislature has done all it can to keep him in Maine, however that legislature has been the newly elected Democrat legislature of…

…New Hampshire:

Lately they have been doing their best to keep companies there in all kinds of ways…

Tobacco Taxes

So the New Hampshire House just passed a bill to tack on another 0.20 cents a pack.

This ‘revenue’ will be extracted from predominantly middle and lower income people, but the left has an excuse.

Boat Taxes

With the lessened taxes: Based on the rates scheduled to go into effect on July 1, 2015, the Department states revenue produced per fiscal year would be $1,529,580. Yes, this is the Republican law
With the Democrat tax hike: Based on the current number of vessel registrations, the Department states the fees in effect produce $3,059,160 of revenue per fiscal year.

Fuel Oil:

By vote of 186 to 165 the Democrat controlled New Hampshire House passed a 25% increase in New Hampshire’s fuel oil tax.

A “county income tax

Tomorrow there is a hearing (10am – LOB 301) for HB 330. HB 330 would allow any county delegation in New Hampshire to adopt a ‘County Income tax’ to be administered by the New Hampshire Department of Revenue Administration

And of course a gas tax

All of us are, or should be, concerned over the necessity of the $1 billion gas tax increase in HB 617. Many of us are looking for an alternative that will address the requirement that we maintain our highways and bridges while avoiding what apparently would be the biggest tax increase in New Hampshire history.

And all of that is after only 5 months of Democrat control!

Who knew that in this short period of time New Hampshire has become such a strong state that they don’t need all those business and people from Maine Massachusetts, Vermont, Rhode Island, and New York to consider relocating in New Hampshire in the future?

And such prosperity isn’t limited to the east. Let’s look west to…


Colorado is in such good shape Gov Hickenlooper he can afford to sign this

Colorado’s governor signed bills Wednesday that place new restrictions on firearms, signaling a change for Democrats who have traditionally shied away from gun control in a state with a pioneer tradition of gun ownership and self-reliance

even though it leads to this

Ammunition magazine manufacturer Magpul Industries said it plans to begin leaving Colorado “almost immediately,” and other firms may follow suit in the wake of a new law that limits ammunition magazine capacities.

“Our moving efforts are underway,” Magpul chief operating officer Doug Smith said Wednesday. “Within the next 30 days we will manufacture our first magazine outside the state of Colorado.”

Who knew Colorado was doing so well they could spare businesses like Magpul and Lawrence Tool & Molding…

“We’re basically going to follow Magpul and do our best to continue being a supplier for them,” said Lloyd Lawrence, owner of Denver-based Lawrence Tool & Molding. “It will probably be out of state.”

Lawrence said about 50 to 60 percent of his business comes from supplying magazine parts to Magpul.

and Alfred Manufacturing…

Denver-based Alfred Manufacturing Co., employs 150 residents. It, too, will “relocate part or all of our operations out of state” if Democrat Gov. John Hickenlooper enacts the stringent gun-control regime pushed by Biden and company. The company has already put expansion plans on hold.

And of course we can’t leave out the state doing the absolute best of them all, California, which is doing so well it can spare the rich:

With the new year, big earners are confronting a 51.9 percent federal-state income tax hit on earnings over $1 million, the result of a confluence of new tax-the-rich levies imposed by California and Congress in the closing days of 2012. That is officially the highest in the nation.

small businesses

Campbell Soup announced in September that it was closing its 65-year-old plant in Sacramento, which employed 700 workers, and shifting production to North Carolina, Ohio and Texas. Chevron is moving 800 technical positions—in other words, jobs that aren’t physically stationed on California rigs—to Houston.

Non-manufacturing businesses are also moving or expanding operations where labor, land, energy and capital are cheaper. Comcast announced in the fall that it is moving 1,000 call-center jobs out of California because of the “high cost of doing business.” Facebook, eBay EBAY and LegalZoom have opened up Texas offices in the past few years, while PayPal, Yelp and Maxwell Technologies MXWL have pushed into Phoenix.

and of course the average person

Even while California’s Hispanic population has grown by more than 1.5 million since 2005, thanks to high birth rates and foreign immigration, two Hispanics have moved out for every one that has moved in from another state. By contrast, four Hispanics from other states have settled in Texas and Arizona for every three that have left.

It’s not unusual for immigrants or their descendants to move in pursuit of a better life. That’s the history of America. But it is ironic that many of the intended beneficiaries of California’s liberal government are running for the state line—and that progressive policies appear to be what’s driving them away.

It’s gratifying to see that these states and others are so prosperous they can spare not only the jobs, but the workers who these companies employ that fuel economic growth, and in the fashion of true Christian charity they are giving other states a chance to get those jobs they can spare

lawmakers from Texas, Michigan, Oklahoma, Arizona and South Carolina are now courting Remington away from New York and Magpul away from Colorado.

So if anyone tells you that New England, Colorado, California and all those blue states are doing bad, don’t buy it, they’re just doing so well they simply don’t need the jobs and the revenue they bring and what to share it with their less fortunate Red State neighbors

Now that’s what I call neighborly!


Olimometer 2.52

I’d like to say I’m doing as good as the state of Massachusetts and able to spare the tip jar hits, but while my total for the week rose 10% that added up to a $2 move from $20 to $22 out of the $300 weekly paycheck I hope to draw.

If you, unlike the GOP think conservative bloggers are worth the investment consider being one of the 14 people who can kick in $20 this week for that weekly $300 paycheck. If you think it’s worth your money and can spare that $20 feel free to hit DaTipJar below.

Granite Grok has been writing about how the newly Democrat NH Legislature has been pushing the Tax envelope:

The Concord Monitor is reporting on a plan by New Hampshire Democrat David Campbell (D- Nashua), that would eventually extract $115,000,000.00 million more dollars per year out of the pockets of struggling New Hampshire families. He’d like to raise the gas tax and the increase the cost to register your vehicles every year.

His ‘plan’ would raise the price you pay for gas five cents a year for three years. At the same time the cost of your vehicle registration would also increase five dollars a year for three years. So you’d’ see two separate tax increases every year for three years; is that two new taxes of six?

The question is why do Maggie Hassan and the Democrats think they can get away with this in New Hampshire? The answer the stuff being proposed in Massachusetts is EVEN WORSE:

Here is the direct link to the bill:

Bill H.3142 188th (Current)
An Act relative to the establishment of a vehicle mileage user fee pilot program by the Massachusetts Department of Transportation

By Mr. Sciortino of Medford, a petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 3142) of Carl M. Sciortino, Jr. and others relative to the establishment of a vehicle mileage user fee pilot program by the Department of Transportation. Transportation.

The full text of the bill is at the link. No wonder Maggie & Co feel safe in NH, after even two years of Democrat power it will take an awful lot of crazy to catch up with the Bay State.

Why would anyone stay here?

Not long ago when NY decided to impose one of the stiffest Gun Laws in the nation upon it’s people Texas Decided to say to New Yorkers to come on down.

Now Governor Patrick of Massachusetts has decided to run his own ad for the Lone Star State in the form of his budget:

Gov. Deval Patrick has asked for $1.9 billion in new and increased taxes, and on Wednesday he reportedly advanced a plan that would expand the state’s budget by $2.6 billion – an 8.1 percent increase that would bring state spending to $34.8 billion.

This includes tax increases on soda, candy & gas, along with increased fees.

He is also talking about eliminating several tax deductions, counting on people in a bad economy willing to be played for suckers gamble their money away and in the one sop in a pile of manure he proposes dropping the sales tax (from 6.25). The once sensible move in the entire stack.

Hey we re-elected this government and we deserve what we get but I’d think the Governor might allow Texas and other states to produce their own ads rather than creating a ready-made one for them with this budget.

Before the Governor’s budget a fellow on Twitter gave me this advice.

even with this new budget I’m unlikely to leave, but I have two sons in college and I can’t see either one staying, meaning unless I follow them Chris Christie’s prediction about airplane grandparents will come true.

and I suspect I won’t be alone.

It all depends on what the meaning of the word “is” is

Bill Clinton

Remember the media meme that tax increases were necessary to be sure the rich pay their fair share? Well apparently to democrats, the party of the little guy and the media “The Rich” doesn’t include General Electric, Citigroup, Diageo (makers of Puerto Rician Rum) Citi, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, American Wind Energy Association and The Motion Picture Association of America.

Apparently they wanted a big batch of tax credits and favors and paid millions to lobbyists to achieve them, they put these credits into a Senate bill called the Family and Business Tax Cut Certainty Act of 2012.

Now as the GOP didn’t support this massive tax giveaway and a House of Representatives with a strong Tea Party presence wasn’t about to pass it. In fact according to the site…

Introduced Aug 28, 2012
Reported by Committee Aug 28, 2012
Passed Senate (not yet occurred)
Passed House (not yet occurred)
Signed by the President (not yet occurred)
The committees assigned to this bill sent it to the House or Senate as a whole for consideration on August 28, 2012.
Prognosis: 19% chance of being enacted.

Or at least that would have been the odds but according to Tim Carney of the Washington Times:

A Republican Senate aide familiar with the cliff negotiations tells me the White House wanted permanent extensions of a whole slew of corporate tax credits. When Senate Republicans said no, “the White House insisted that the exact language” of the Baucus bill be included in the fiscal cliff deal. “They were absolutely insistent,” another aide tells me. (The White House did not return requests for comment.)

Sure enough, Title II of the fiscal cliff legislation is nearly a word-for-word replication of the Family and Business Tax Cut Certainty Act of 2012.

So the Democrats,the protectors of the little guy, the people who were going to make sure that the rich paid their fair share and President Obama their champion managed to do what corporate lobbyists couldn’t add this unpassable bill into the fiscal cliff legislation, passed it in the senate and sent to the house where democrats voted for it en masse and enough establishment Republicans could make sure their corporate friends had their reward.

There was a time when media would have screamed foul, there was a time when such a bill once read and known to the public would not have been possible, but the media has already defined the villain as the GOP and the heroes as the Democrats in general and this President in particular and no amount of truth could change it.

We get the government we deserve, I really thought we deserved better.

Update: The Wall Street Journal adds to the list:

In praising Congress’s huge new tax increase, President Obama said Tuesday that “millionaires and billionaires” will finally “pay their fair share.” That is, unless you are a Nascar track owner, a wind-energy company or the owners of StarKist Tuna, among many others who managed to get their taxes reduced in Congress’s New Year celebration.

and they have a solution for the GOP

Republicans who are looking for a new populist message have one waiting here, and they could start by repudiating the corporate welfare in this New Year disgrace.

and even better they can ask where the MSM were when this happened?

One of the things that never ceases to amaze me is how many people fall for the “Tax the Rich” business in the form of higher taxes.

However the women at PolitiChicks aren’t among them:

But wouldn’t these same celebrities be worried about the impending tax hikes? Aren’t they worried that they could be impacted? Not a chance. Because when it comes to actually paying taxes, these celebrities don’t want to pay their “fair share.” And, guess what? They don’t have to.

Hollywood’s elites are using a whole array of methods to escape paying their “fair share.” They use of offshore trusts, tax havens and the transferring funds to wives or civil partners as tax dodges.

Hey that can’t be right! Celebs like Kimberlin funder Barbra Streisand supported all these big tax hikes what could they possibly get out of it?

Well shortly after Proposition 30 was passed, Governor Brown signed legislation extending the state’s $100 million tax-credit fund for two more years. This measure allows California film producers a 20 percent or 25 percent credit against income and sales and use taxes.

There’s even more good news for Hollywood’s elite. California Assembly member Felipe Fuentes (D) has introduced Bill AB 2026. This measure would extend the State’s Film and Television Tax Credit Program by an additional five years, for an estimated tax break of $500 million dollars ($100 million per year). The program has already saved the Hollywood industry over $400 million in tax credits to date.

I wonder how much of that $400 mill went to democrat pols urging the rich to pay their “fair share”?

And that’s just the credits passed in daylight. For example while it’s axiomatic that you could consider using Henry C Frye for your accounting and financial planning needs, it’s also axiomatic the very rich have an army of Henry Frye’s on payroll ready to find the necessary credits and deductions to offset any increase in rates but the avg small businessman like say Walter from Aaron Pallet doesn’t.

Any person who doesn’t understand this just doesn’t get it.

As my day off ends (really a day and a half because I watched NO news on Sunday, odd to be the least informed person in the house) I see that the White House is claiming a mandate for Tax Increases:

In characteristic fashion, President Obama held a post-election “press conference” on Friday that didn’t involve him answering any questions. He just made pronouncements. And while there was a bit of conciliatory language sprinkled in, he was adamant that his narrow re-election victory means everyone must now submit to his theories about a “balanced approach” to deficit reduction.

Now I find this entire “mandate” argument a tad odd. Forgetting that we have a president winning by a smaller margin in re-election (not seen since the 3rd term of FDR) we have the same president, the same senate within a seat or two and the same control of the house (and not just by a seat or two either).

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems to me the American People have spoken and they said, “we’ll stand pat.”

But in the grand tradition of optics over action (Yeah Sandy is still Katrina on the Hudson but it’s dropped off the National Radar now that the election is won) there is a school of thought that suggests we should consider some tax increases.

For a for a long time Glenn Reynolds has pointed to a particular direction:

The movie excise tax was imposed in response to the high deficits after World War Two. Deficits are high again, and there’s already historical precedent. Of course, to keep up with technology, the tax should now apply to DVDs, downloadable movies, pay-per-view and the like. But in these financially perilous times, why should movie stars and studio moguls, with their yachts, swimming pools and private jets, not at least shoulder the burden they carried back in Harry Truman’s day — when, to be honest, movies were better anyway.

For extra fun, they could show pictures of David Geffen’s yacht and John Travolta’s personal Boeing 707 on the Senate floor. You want to tax fat cats? I gotcher “fat cats” right here! Repeal the Hollywood Tax Cuts!

Bill Jacobson has a suggestion for our liberal friends in College:

Revoke the tax deduction for contributions and their tax exempt status, make them pay local real estate taxes like the rest of us, maybe that will shut them up from demanding that taxes be raised on everyone else.

A reader has this suggestion:

A one time excise tax on the fair market value of the endowments of all the private foundations would work nicely. An to be fair, the rate should be low for the small guys and 90% for the behemoths like Ford and Carnegie.

and Human events has more suggestions:

Capping the mortgage interest deduction at $250,000, for example, would hurt those rich blue enclaves with high property values – 8 of the 10 richest counties in America voted for Barack Obama in 2012. Taxing trust funds and hoards of foundation money would hurt the Left, as outside of Hollywood, rich liberals are more likely to be sitting on piles of inherited assets, while conservative millionaires tend to be actively generating and re-investing income. Ending the federal tax deductions for state and local taxes – an idea prominently advocated by Newt Gingrich during the Republican primary – would end the practice of federal taxpayers subsidizing the government greed of those big-spending blue states. It’s actually a form of inter-state redistribution as it stands, so let’s do away with it.

I’m sure tax & money people can some up with more but the trick isn’t thinking them up, the trick is turning them into a bill and getting the word out before the left can counter.

These proposals should go straight to the American public with these proposals before going to the White House and let the Democrats explain to the people who they’ve told for years why we can’t raise taxes of these folks.

The Democrats have been telling us for years that if we only give a bit on tax increases “Obama’ll fix it”.

Let them prove it.