Tax Analysts Blog

Aug 27, 2015
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If foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, then Americans have very big minds, indeed. While trying to make sense of Donald Trump's statements on tax policy, I was struck by their disparate quality; to call them random is to exaggerate their coherence. But then I realized that Trump...
Aug 26, 2015
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Earlier this month, the Seattle City Council enacted an unusual excise tax on guns and ammunition. I say unusual because attempts to regulate firearms through taxation are usually taken up by the federal or state governments. The Seattle council passed a measure that imposes a $25 tax on firearms a...
Aug 19, 2015
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What one word comes to mind when you hear "due process"? It should be fairness. We inherently know what's right and wrong. We know when someone is being treated unfairly. And the Constitution reflects those beliefs. We think it is wrong to beat a confession out of someone. We think it is wrong to d...
Aug 17, 2015
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Money plays a big role in politics. And politics, of course, plays a big role in the formulation of tax policy and what ends up in legislation. House, Senate, and particularly presidential candidates need an ever-growing amount of cash and donations to wage successful campaigns. And those resources...
Aug 13, 2015
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Hillary Clinton has plans for America – some appealing, some not -- but they all share a common thread. No, it's not “building an economy for tomorrow” or “strengthening America's families.” Rather, it's their tendency to make tax reform a whole lot harder. Consider the “New College Comp...
Aug 12, 2015
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Here in the dog days of August, it seems fitting to write about beer. I know some of you don't drink it, but in the immortal words of country music star Billy Currington, beer is good. In Shawshank Redemption, Andy Dufresne says, "I think a man working outdoors feels more like a man if he can have...
Aug 10, 2015
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The Republican debate season is underway. On August 6 the top 10 GOP candidates for president squared off in Ohio. The first contest will primarily be remembered for Donald Trump's bizarre spat with Fox News's Megyn Kelly. In 2012 the first Fox News debate saw a much more consequential moment. When...
Aug 7, 2015
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In September 2014 Tax Analysts sent a Freedom of Information Act request to the IRS for a list of all states and localities currently participating in IRS taxpayer information sharing programs, and all taxpayer information sharing agreements entered into between any state or territory of the United...
Aug 6, 2015
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Last month, Hillary Clinton released a not entirely novel plan for taxing capital gains. In an effort to encourage long-term thinking and check the rise of what she calls “quarterly capitalism,” she suggested a tax break targeting buy-and-hold investors. If investors are thinking long-term, corpo...
Aug 5, 2015
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In the state of Washington, the irrepressible conservative political activist Tim Eyman is leading yet another antitax fight. Eyman's Initiative 1366, on the November ballot, could slash state tax revenue by $8 billion over the next six years. The initiative would reduce the state's 6.5-cent sales...