Sunday, June 11, 2006

Death of the Repeal

This week Republicans tried to repeal the Estate Tax. Thank goodness it completely failed. If you don't know what the estate tax is visit these two links for a good run-down:

Fair Economy
Factcheck

The timing for a repeal of the estate tax is uncanny. It's no coincidence that it's being brought up during an election cycle. According to a recent Gallup Poll, Gallup polled Americans on what should be the top priorities for government. The results showed 42 percent said the war in Iraq should be the top priority. This is followed by fuel or oil prices at 29 percent and immigration at 23 percent.

So, if Americans feel that the top three priorities for government are Iraq, fuel prices and immigration, why are we spending time on repealing a tax that only effects two percent of the wealthiest Americans in the nation?

We're spending time on it because it's a political ploy by Republicans to appease their conservative base.

Read the Washtingon Post's coverage for a fair look at the subject.

14 comments:

Blake Roberts said...

DEATH TO THE DEATH TAX!

Honest question though, are charitable contributions from an estate subject to the estate tax? FOr example, if I put it in my will to donoate 25% of my estate to the humanitarian fund, does it come before or after the tax?

Peter Nguyen said...

Great question.

According to the IRS website, any amount that goes to your spouse or to a charitable organization is not subject to the estate tax.

JP said...

What is the point in posting that outrageous Paris Hilton poster? Seems like sensationalism to me.

Peter Nguyen said...

It seems like sensationalism because it is sensationalism. It was supposed to be funny.

JP said...

Oh

JP said...

I understand you're trying to be funny but it's pretty sophomoric and really discredits your well-thought-out argument.

Blake Roberts said...

I thought it was funny. I guess that jokes that have to be explained never have the same kick as those you just get, so I understand jp not laughing. I say keep it, it adds flavor.

JP said...

I fully understand and "get" the joke, as it were. I question the placement of it.

You've presented a perfectly rational and reasonable argument against the estate tax, and then muddle it with a lame attempt at humor - which, in effect, undermines the tone of your argument.

It trivializes what is, for many Americans, a very sensitive issue - in the very same breath that you are trying to legitimize the same issue. It's out of place and I would venture that any Republican you were hoping to get to come over to "your side" through your argument, you probably lost because of the poster.

Political cartoons and illustrations are not meant to just amuse. They are meant to make you think, no matter what side of the issue you are on. If you want people to take you seriously, I would suggest that you adopt that approach.

Just a suggestion

Blake Roberts said...

I apologize, when Peter mentioned it was supposed to be funny,and you replied "oh", I thought that it was an indication of you just understanding that it was supposed to be funny. I don't doubt that once it was explained that you would get it, I had just thought that you didn't get it at first. Again, my bad.

Chris Stow-Serge said...

The fact of the matter is that this is something that will benefit only the extremely wealthy. There was great opinion piece in the New York Times last week about it that had the raw numbers, but from what I remember the amount of actual small businesses that are affected by this is close to nil. Especially given all the loopholes in this law where assets are not covered under the estate tax if they are put in the ownership of both the current owner and the inheritor. Anyway, my point is that while we can sit here and debate the Paris Hilton poster Republican interest groups are casting this as a Death Tax on everybody. A claim that is false and malicious.

~Chris Stow-Serge
www.stowserge.com

Blake Roberts said...

I for one (having just said "death tax" in a previous post) make no claim that the tax applies to everybody. But, it is equally unfair (in my opinion) to label tax cuts that primarily affect the wealthy as "tax cuts for the rich" (an effort to make people think that the rich get special benifits, which is a favorite tactic of democrats). The rich pay higher taxes, and therefore, tax cuts naturally give them a greater return.

But, this country was founded upon the idea that individuals, through hard work, sacrifice, frugality, and skill, may elevate themselves from a posistion of poverty to wealth. Therefore, the estate tax being kept or repealed is of importance tot he lower or middle class, because they may one day be affected by it (or effected, I always get those two confused). I am not wealthy, but repealing the estate/death tax could benifit me one day, as I may become wealthy in the future. It's all about perspective. So, targeting middle/lower class support for it's removal could be seen as being optimistic abot thier future.

Jessica said...

Interestingly enough, Warren Buffet came out in support of the "death tax."

Actually, looks like Warren Buffet, William Gates Sr. and George Soros all came out in support of the "death tax" though the article that referred to that was from 2001. I do know that Buffet recently came out AGAIN in favor of the tax.

Jessica said...

Buffet:


"I would hate to see the estate tax gutted...

"It's a very equitable tax," Buffett said. "It's in keeping with the idea of equality of opportunity in this country, not giving incredible head starts to certain people who were very selective about the womb from which they emerged."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/financial_buffett_taxes_dc

Anonymous said...

I am going to link people to this post, as more evidence that liberals are in fact socialists