Taxes

The Cow Loophole

Mar 27, 2012
Photo by No oooming! via Flickr

When I think of tax evasion or corporate loopholes, I think paper shredders and mumbling accountants huddled over ledgers – not green pastures and high white fences… and yet, for wealthy landowners looking to avoid the brunt of high property taxes through agricultural credits and breaks, all it takes to save millions is a few stray heifers, or a handful of goats.   Pat Garofalo is economic policy editor at Think Progress, and the author a recent op-ed called

New Hampshire communities have long depended on it to fund government services and schools. Over the years that reliance has grown, as state funding has abated. The tax is often lauded for enhancing local control but criticized for over burdening those on fixed incomes.  We’ll look at these arguments both in this state and nationally.

Guests

Many religious traditions stress the importance of charity. But Mormons are remarkable for the amount and the precision with which they give to their church.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that each Mormon in good standing should tithe 10 percent of his or her income. The money goes right to church headquarters in Salt Lake City and then is distributed back to congregations around the world.

"That's written in stone, and preached from the pulpit," says Gordon Dahl, an economist at the University of California, San Diego, who is Mormon.

Cutting taxes is part of the DNA of the modern Republican Party. All four of the remaining GOP candidates for president have proposed steep cuts in business and personal taxes, and it sometimes seems like Republicans are competing to show the most enthusiasm for tax cuts.

At a debate last month, former Sen. Rick Santorum said tax cuts were needed to get the economy thriving again — even if they benefit the wealthy.

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidreber/4471416713/sizes/m/in/photostream/">David Rebber</a> via/ Flickr Creative Commons

There’s National Pi Day...that’s P-I for the mathematicians.

There’s talk like a Pirate Day....ARRRGH... and then there’s today- January 27th, the IRS’s Earned Income Tax Credit Day.

Who knew?

Usually infomercials sound too good to be true, right?

“The Ginsu 2000 can saw a lead pipe and still slice a tomato like this. The legend is back..” 

You expect this kind of shtick from a company peddling steak knives.

But the IRS?

<http://www.flickr.com/photos/68751915@N05/6355404323/>40lk</a>/flickr

Our issue Tuesday series continues with the Republican Presidential Candidates and their fiscal policies.  The soaring national debt has been a rallying cry among republicans, who see it as a top economic threat.  We’ll examine what the candidates are saying about government spending, debt and deficits…as well as entitlement reform, programs like Social security and Medicare.

Guests

The Bi-Partisan Congressional Super-committee failed last week to reach a deficit reduction agreement.  That means automatic spending cuts kick in, in twenty thirteen…and President Obama says he’ll veto any attempt avoid those.  We talk with two economists about what this all means…and about the rocky political and economic roads ahead.

 

 

 

 

Guests

Tax collections were off in the month of October by $4 million dollars. The drop in tobacco revenue makes up the majority of the shortfall.

The tobacco tax brought in $2.6 million less than expected in October.

That shortfall has prompted criticism of the GOP push to cut the tax by a dime back in June.

In a sharply worded press release about the overall budget House Democrats said it doesn’t make sense to “make college more expensive and cigarettes cheaper.”

The congressional “super committee” is only tasked with cutting one point two trillion dollars from the federal debt. But Second District Republican Congressman Charlie Bass is asking the panel to cut even deeper, even if it taxes are thrown into the mix.

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