Republicans Are About To Pass The Most Important Tax Bill In A Generation

Republican members of Congress are racing to pass the tax reform bill so that they can get home in time for Christmas, and it looks like it is actually going to happen.  The key is the Senate, and at this point it looks like there will be enough votes, but we have seen surprises before.  As I have stated previously, I would have voted for this bill, but nobody should pretend that this fixes our tax system.  The tax code is still going to be more than two million words long, the regulations are still going to be more than seven million words long, and Americans are still going to spend billions of hours and tens of billions of dollars complying with the most complicated tax system on the entire planet. (Read More...)

Here They Come For Your Money – Dozens Of States Are Raising Taxes In 2011

You didn’t think that state governments would rack up all of this debt without eventually coming after your money, did you?  In 2011, dozens of U.S. states are either implementing tax increases that have already been passed or are debating new tax increases that have recently been proposed.  In most states, the actual state income tax is not being raised.  State politicians have learned that voters really tend to get angry when that happens.  Rather, our politicians on the state level are looking for taxes and fees that won’t be “noticed” that they can raise.  For example, cigarette taxes, alcohol taxes, gas taxes, carbonated beverage taxes and phone taxes get raised a lot because the voters do not pay them directly to the government and typically they do not get noticed as much.  Another huge area where state politicians love to raise money is through various “fees”.  For instance, millions of Americans have noticed that car registration fees and license fees have absolutely soared in recent years.  Instead of our politicians coming at us with one big, huge tax increase that we would surely notice, they are hitting us with dozens of smaller tax hikes and fee increases that they are hoping we will not get upset about.  The truth is that the average American pays literally dozens of different kinds of taxes each year, and it still isn’t nearly enough to cover the horrific debts that our politicians have piled up. (Read More...)