Tax Analysts Blog

Jan 14, 2016

One of our favorite discussion topics is the VAT -- more specifically, whether the United States will ever adopt a federal consumption tax. In that regard, much can be learned from looking at the experiences of other countries. What’s happening in India – the world’s largest democracy -- is noteworthy because it underscores some of the difficulties in harmonizing a federal VAT with preexisting taxes at the state and local levels.

Jan 14, 2016
One of our favorite discussion topics is the VAT -- more specifically, whether the United States will ever adopt a federal consumption tax. In that regard, much can be learned from looking at the experiences of other countries. What's happening in India – the world's largest democracy -- is note...
Jan 13, 2016

Retailers and state officials are giving up on Congress and instead hoping that the U.S. Supreme Court will act to provide clarity and uniformity on the taxation of remote sales.

Jan 13, 2016
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Tax credits for private schools are troublesome; this one is unconstitutional.

Jan 6, 2016
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Taxing guns and ammunition may seem like doing something about violence, but it’s not.

Dec 28, 2015

This is the time of year when many people make resolutions promising to do things differently come January, reasoning that it is good to start fresh when the last digit in the year changes. Except for resolving to write the new year correctly on all my checks starting January 1, I am not one of those people. If something needs fixing or doing differently, I try to take care of it right away. After all, if a problem crops up on January 30, why would I wait 11 months to do something about it?

Dec 16, 2015
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As 2016 fast approaches, I have some suggestions for those responsible for state tax policies. These suggestions will make the tax system -- and indeed, the government -- fairer, more transparent, and more efficient. And they should be issues that both Democrats and Republicans agree on. Here they...
Dec 14, 2015
When Captain Ahab set sail, he was looking for revenge. But the crew of the Pequod were after something less personal and more profitable: sperm whales. And thanks to an 18th-century form of profit sharing, they were motivated to find them. “The method of wage payment in the whaling industry was a...
Dec 10, 2015
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The conventional wisdom is that Congress passes messy laws and Treasury and the IRS have to use their regulatory authority to provide clarity and administrability. The recent changes to partnership audits are only the latest example of practitioners and observers crying out that provisions in legis...
Dec 9, 2015
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On December 4 President Obama signed into law the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act. While it deals with funding transportation, the new law also contains a pernicious scheme to raise revenue. It requires the IRS to use private debt collectors. While the IRS has long had discretion to us...