Link

"The truth is, most other presidents would envy President Obama’s record despite the fact that he inherited the worst economic crash since the Great Depression."

I’m not happy with him about everything, and #8 and #14 (especially) are contentious, but we are UNDENIABLY better off than before. 

Link

familycarlyle:

Nick Carnes lists 5 points in support of his argument, backs them up with some very interesting (or depressing, depending) figures, most of them sourced from OpenSecrets.org and the Center for Responsive Politics.

Found at Vox.

"…Members with more personal wealth are more likely to oppose the estate tax. Members who are more privileged care less about reducing economic inequality. It really matters that we have such a white-collar government…

Perhaps it wouldn’t matter so much that working-class Americans are all but absent inside our political institutions if they had a powerful voice outside our political institutions. But that’s not true either. For a host of different reasons, the voices of working-class Americans are getting harder and harder for politicians to hear.

Unions — which traditionally advocated the interests of lower-income and working-class Americans — have been shrinking for the last 50 years, thanks in large part to government policies that make it difficult for workers to organize

Moreover, lobbying has become a multi-billion-dollar industry. And that’s probably only the tip of the iceberg…

Elections are more expensive than ever. Want to be a member of Congress? You’re going to have to raise millions of dollars…

The problem for reformers who want to make the government more representative of and responsive to blue-collar workers is that their efforts need to pass through our white-collar government…

These reforms ask politicians who are succeeding in the current political system to change that system so they’re less likely to succeed in it.”

(via terribleminds)

Quote
"

A proposed theme park based on the story of Noah’s Ark discriminates in employment in favor of fundamentalist Christians and should be ineligible for tax incentives from the state of Kentucky, Americans United for Separation of Church and State says.

In a letter to Gov. Steve Beshear and the Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority, the group wrote, “Per the required Statement of Faith, an applicant must profess, inter alia, that homosexuality is a sin on par with bestiality and incest, that the earth is only 6,000 years old, and that the bible is literally true in order to be considered for the job.”

“Ark Encounter’s participation in the tax incentive program would compel taxpayers in the state to support both religious discrimination and a religious ministry,” the letter noted…

“State tax subsidies should not be used to support religious discrimination or proselytization,” said Americans United Associate Legal Director Alex J. Luchenitser. “The state aid sought by the Ark Park would do exactly that. It should be denied.”

"

Proposed Ky. ‘Ark Park’ Engages In Religious Employment Discrimination | Americans United

Amen to that.

Photo
wilwheaton:


States refusing to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act will lose more than $35 billion collectively in federal funds by 2022, and cost their taxpaying citizens more. That’s from a new report from the Commonwealth Fund, Not expanding Medicaid is not a rational decision for any state. But there are some very big losers: Texas ($9.6 billion), Florida ($5 billion), Georgia ($2.9 billion), Virginia ($2.8 billion) and North Carolina ($2.6 billion). The citizens of those states will continue to “bear a significant share of the overall cost of the expansion through federal tax payments,” the report says, while they will “not enjoy any of the benefits.”
So red state residents are paying the federal taxes that help support Medicaid expansion everywhere but at home. More than that, they’re losing the community hospitals that they rely on for timely medical care, especially in emergencies.

All because the Republican governors of these states are afraid of the GOP presidential primary. They’re cowards who are hurting people for no good reason, because the GOP base is insane.
(via Daily Kos: States not expanding Medicaid set to lose billions)

wilwheaton:

States refusing to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act will lose more than $35 billion collectively in federal funds by 2022, and cost their taxpaying citizens more. That’s from a new report from the Commonwealth Fund, Not expanding Medicaid is not a rational decision for any state. But there are some very big losers: Texas ($9.6 billion), Florida ($5 billion), Georgia ($2.9 billion), Virginia ($2.8 billion) and North Carolina ($2.6 billion). The citizens of those states will continue to “bear a significant share of the overall cost of the expansion through federal tax payments,” the report says, while they will “not enjoy any of the benefits.”

So red state residents are paying the federal taxes that help support Medicaid expansion everywhere but at home. More than that, they’re losing the community hospitals that they rely on for timely medical care, especially in emergencies.

All because the Republican governors of these states are afraid of the GOP presidential primary. They’re cowards who are hurting people for no good reason, because the GOP base is insane.

(via Daily Kos: States not expanding Medicaid set to lose billions)

Quote
"

Extell is also seeking a controversial 421a exemption — a tax break given to developers who include affordable housing in their market-rate buildings.

In October, The Post reported that five of the luxury firm’s towers cost the city $21.8 million in tax revenue in their first year alone.

Together, the buildings paid just $567,337 in annual taxes. Without the 421a program, they would have paid the city $22 million, according to appraisal firm Miller Samuel Inc.

Extell declined to comment.

"

Critics blasting Upper West Side luxury building for planning separate entrance for affordable-housing units - NYPOST.com

It gets worse when you read the actual article. The low-income units would also have a separate elevator and maintenance company!

Quote
"

The Internal Revenue Service’s screening of groups seeking tax-exempt status was broader and lasted longer than has been previously disclosed, the new head of the agency acknowledged Monday. Terms including ‘‘Israel,’’ ‘’Progressive’’ and ‘‘Occupy’’ were used by agency workers to help pick groups for closer examination, according to an internal IRS document obtained by The Associated Press.

…Rep. Sander Levin of Michigan, top Democrat on the Ways and Means panel, said he was writing a letter to J. Russell George, the Treasury Department inspector general whose audit in May detailed IRS targeting of conservatives, asking why his report did not mention other groups that were targeted.

‘‘The audit served as the basis and impetus for a wide range of congressional investigations and this new information shows that the foundation of those investigations is flawed in a fundamental way,’’ Levin said.

"

Documents show IRS also screened liberal groups - Taxes - Boston.com

WELL, WELL, WELL.

Text

"Each and every year corporations and the wealthy are avoiding more than $100 billion in U.S. taxes by sheltering their income offshore.

Pharmaceutical companies like Eli Lilly and Pfizer have fought to make it illegal for the American people to buy cheaper prescription drugs from Canada and Europe. But, during tax season, Eli Lilly and Pfizer shift drug patents and profits to the Netherlands and other offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. taxes.

Apple wants all of the advantages of being an American company, but it doesn’t want to pay American taxes or American wages. It creates the iPad, the iPhone, the iPod, and iTunes in the United States, but manufactures most of its products in China so it doesn’t have to pay American wages. Then it shifts most of its profits to Ireland, Luxembourg, the British Virgin Islands and other tax havens to avoid paying U.S. taxes. Without such maneuvers, Apple’s federal tax bill in the United States would have been $2.4 billion higher in 2011.

Offshore tax schemes have become so absurd that one five-story office building in the Cayman Islands is now the “home” to more than 18,000 corporations.

This tax avoidance does not just reduce the revenue that we need to pay for education, healthcare, roads, and environmental protection, it is also costing us millions of American jobs”

- Bernie Sanders newsletter

Quote
"

Ohio really did go for President Obama last night, and he really did win. And he really was born in Hawaii. And he really is, legitimately, President of the United State - again.

And the Bureau of Labor Statistics did not make up a fake unemployment rate last month. And the Congressional Research Center really can find no evidence that cutting taxes on rich people grows the economy.

And the polls were not skewed to oversample Democrats. And Nate Silver was not making up fake poll numbers about the election to try to make conservatives feel bad; Nate Silver was doing MATH.

And climate change is real. And rape really does cause pregnancy, sometimes. And evolution is a thing. And Benghazi was an attack on us, it was not a scandal BY us.

And nobody’s taking away anyone’s guns. And taxes have not gone up. And the deficit is dropping, actually. And Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction.

And the moon landing? Was real. And FEMA is not building concentration camps. And UN election observers are not taking over Texas. And moderate reforms on the regulations on the financial industries and the insurance industries in this country are not the same as communism.

Listen. Last night was a good night for liberals and for Democrats, for very obvious reasons. But it was also possibly a good night for this country as a whole.

But if the conservative movement and the conservative media and the Republican party is stuck in a vacuum-sealed, door-locked, spin cycle of telling what makes them feel good, and denying the actual lived truth of the world, we are all deprived, as a nation, of the very debate between competing, feasible ideas about real problems.

Last night the Republicans got shellacked, and they had NO idea it was coming. And we saw them in real time - in real, humiliating time - not believe it even as it was happening to them. And unless they want to secede, they will need to pop the fictional bubble they have been so happily living inside, if they do not want to get shellacked again.

"

Rachel Maddow (via seriouslyamerica)

She knocked it straight out of the park.

(via terribleminds)

Link

Speaking Monday night at a campaign event in Connecticut, Obama said the GOP plan “is like Robin Hood in reverse.”

Obama says Romney’s tax plan would give tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans while forcing middle-class families to pay up to $2,000 a year in additional taxes.

The president cites a study by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center that says millionaires would receive a tax cut of approximately $250,000 a year if the former Massachusetts governor gets his way.

(Source: huffingtonpost)

Quote
"Yesterday’s Associated Press story raises serious questions about whether Mitt Romney established a Bermuda corporation to avoid U.S. taxes and attempted to hide it from the public. According to the report, Romney transferred the mysterious corporation to a blind trust in his wife’s name one day before taking office as Governor in order to avoid disclosure. In fact, he left this entity off of seven different personal financial disclosure statements he was required to file under state and federal law since 2001," Mr. LaBolt said. "Bermuda does not tax corporate income or capital gains. Until Romney releases additional years of tax returns, the American people will never know whether he created this shell corporation to intentionally avoid paying U.S. taxes."

Tell Mitt: “Stop hiding your tax returns” | LeftAction