Newspaper logo  
 
 
Local Stories, Events

Ref. : Civic Events

Ref. : Arts & Education Events

Ref. : Public Service Notices

Books, Films, Arts & Education

01.21 The DeVos and the Defrauded [Corruption is now banal...]

01.20 A Swelling Tide of Major Teacher Strikes Is Shifting Our Politics Against the Charter Agenda

Letters

Ref. : Letters to the editor

Health Care & Environment

01.22 How Orkney leads the way for sustainable energy

01.22 Greenland's ice melting faster than scientists previously thought – study

01.22 David Attenborough tells Davos: ‘The Garden of Eden is no more’ [2:21 video]

01.21 35,000 Hit Streets of Berlin to Demand Agricultural Revolution

01.20 Doctors are frightened by climate change. Their industry is a big part of the problem.

01.18 Learning From Cuba’s ‘Medicare for All’

01.17 As Planet Heats Further, Even Davos Elite Warns Humanity Is 'Sleepwalking Into Catastrophe' [Intelligent government is desperately needed]

01.17 Could a Green New Deal Save Civilization? [Intelligent government is desperately needed]

01.17 New plant-focused diet would ‘transform’ planet’s future, say scientists

01.17 Studies Show Ice Melting and Ocean Warming Both Happening Much Faster Than Previously Thought

01.16 Immediate fossil fuel phaseout could arrest climate change – study [Intelligent government is desperately needed]

01.16 Our oceans broke heat records in 2018 and the consequences are catastrophic [charts]

01.15 Solar Farms Shine a Ray of Hope on Bees and Butterflies [Wonderful!]

01.15 Australia could hit 100% renewables sooner than most people think

01.15 Ion age: why the future will be battery powered

01.15 Barclays on wrong side of history with climate policy, says Greenpeace

01.15 'One fish at a time': Indonesia lands remarkable victory

01.15 Insect collapse: ‘We are destroying our life support systems’

01.14 V.A. Seeks to Redirect Billions of Dollars Into Private Care [The most public and efficient healthcare in America has been demonized and will be destroyed rather than improved, raising total  per-capita costs]

01.14 Saudi Arabia Increases Solar Targets To 20 Gigawatts By 2023 & 40 Gigawatts By 2030

01.14 Solar + Storage Half The Cost Of Gas Peaker Plants — 8MinuteEnergy

01.14 Why thousands of Los Angeles teachers are going on strike [Well at least we got a big tax-cut for the super-rich, that was the most important thing.]

01.14 Air pollution 'as bad as smoking in increasing risk of miscarriage'

News Media Matters

01.19 How conservative media became a “safe space”

Daily: FAIR Blog
The Daily Howler

US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

01.22 'Medicare for All and Equal Rights Aren't Trends': Ocasio-Cortez Fires Back After Aaron Sorkin Lectures Young Progressives [Morality is not a trend, it is a state of being we should all aspire to]

01.22 'Literally What Jesus Told People to Do': In Arizona, Possible Prison Time for Leaving Food and Water for Migrants

01.22 White students in MAGA gear crashed the Indigenous Peoples March and harassed participants [3:44 video; we must stop growing/programming more sociopaths]

01.21 Trump’s One Legislative ‘Win’ Is Actually a Failure

01.21 TRUMP 'HAS ISOLATED AMERICA AND TAKEN US BACKWARDS,' FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE KERRY SAYS

01.21 The 'exhausting' work of factcheckers who track Trump's barrage of lies

01.20 REPUBLICAN SAYS TRUMP IS 'INCAPABLE' OF ARTICULATING A PLAN TO END GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN

01.20 Institute Index: The Racial Injustice of the Government Shutdown

01.19 The shutdown’s effect on the US economy, explained

01.19 The Biden Band-Aid: Will Democrats Contain the Insurgency?

01.19 Donald Trump Has Never Cared About Workers, and Never Will

01.19 Republicans’ lack of alarm over the shutdown reveals a disturbing truth [Sociopaths have little or no conscience, empathy or morality...]

01.19 Arizona: Four women convicted after leaving food and water in desert for migrants [morality is against the law]

01.19 Mueller breaks silence to dispute parts of bombshell report on Michael Cohen

Justice Matters

01.19 Merkley Calls for FBI Perjury Probe into Homeland Secretary Nielsen After Child Detention Memo Leaked

High Crimes?
Economics, Crony Capitalism

01.22 The System’s Falling Apart: Were the Dogmatic Marxists Right After All?

01.22 The shutdown has exposed the disaster that is Trumponomics

01.21 World's 26 richest people own as much as poorest 50%, says Oxfam

01.17 Trump's economy is great for billionaires, not for working people [chock-full of pesky facts that government and media ignore and distort]

International & Futurism

01.22 Labor promises to 'supercharge' hydrogen industry as green groups say 'no role for coal'

01.22 Who is more dangerous: El Chapo or Carlos Slim? [Like Drug Gangs, Mafias harm and kill the public too—but slowly and quietly like leeches]

01.22 Martin Luther King was no prophet of unity. He was a radical [He was—and We must be—passionate and pro-active for improving moral conduct in society!]

01.19 The Ebola outbreak in Eastern Congo is moving toward a major city. That’s not good.

01.19 Ahead of Third Annual Women's March, Group Releases Far-Reaching 'Intersectional Feminist Policy Platform'

We are a non-profit Internet-only newspaper publication founded in 1973. Your donation is essential to our survival.

You can also mail a check to:
Baltimore News Network, Inc.
P.O. Box 42581
Baltimore, MD 21284-2581
Google
This site Web
  Print view: The Naked Truth about Capital Gains
TAXING MATTERS:

The Naked Truth about Capital Gains

by Gerald E. Scorse
Monday, 22 November 2010
Regarding investment income, Simpson/Bowles is a Democratic dream come true.

When it comes to taxes on capital gains, the emperor suddenly has no clothes. He’s been stripped bare, in bipartisan fashion, by the co-chairs of President Obama’s fiscal commission.

The chairs are Republican Alan K. Simpson and Erskine Bowles, a Democrat. Their initial report included a call for equal taxes on capital gains, dividends and ordinary income such as wages. This upends the current tax code, and it contradicts almost the entire history of capital gains taxes in America.

Implicitly, it also rejects the K Street claim that tax breaks for capital gains grow jobs, grow businesses and grow the economy. If the claim had any truth, Messrs. Simpson and Bowles would never support equal taxes on all income as a way to help cut the national deficit.

Liberals instinctively attacked the right-leaning aspects of the report. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in full “no” mode, labeled its recommendations “simply unacceptable." Not quite, Madam Speaker; à propos investment income, Simpson/Bowles is a Democratic dream come true.

Income from wealth and income from work were taxed at the same rate in only two widely-separated times in America—from 1916-21, and after Ronald Reagan’s Tax Reform Act of 1986. President Clinton restored the tax break on capital gains in 1997, cutting the rate on long-term gains from Reagan’s 28 percent to 20 percent. Six years later, President Bush lowered the levy to 15 percent and did likewise for dividends. The Bush cuts were written to expire in 2010, but it’s not certain they will. Even if they did, the capital gains rate would still be less than the rate on middle-class wages.

The Simpson/Bowles recommendations could die a quick death: a unified final report needs the votes of 14 out of the commission’s 18 members, comprised of nine from each party. If a super-majority of 14 can agree, their report arrives at the White House on December 1.

But the proposals are now on the table, so the genie is out of the bottle. President Obama and Congress were already facing a showdown on extending the Bush tax cuts. Now, in addition, Congress and the Administration have a rare opportunity to set a new course for the nation’s fiscal future.

They could start by revisiting the tax code and creating capital gains tax breaks that really would grow jobs and stimulate the economy. Small companies with big dreams raise seed money through initial public offerings (IPOs) and secondary offerings; larger companies sometimes do the same (e.g., the resurgent GM). In a move that would give a built-in boost to the market for new issues, capital gains on these investments could accrue tax-free. Interest on corporate bonds, now taxed as ordinary income, also deserves a tax break. Corporate bonds raise the money to build corporate infrastructure, much like municipal bonds raise money to build local infrastructure. Interest from municipal bonds gets tax breaks; why not corporate interest?

How to pay for these new tax breaks? Easy: the money would come from ending the unproductive tax break on stock market gains, along with the 2003 tax break on dividends.

In 1986, President Reagan essentially traded tax breaks on capital gains for another round of cuts in the marginal rates. A generation later, the initial draft from Obama’s fiscal commission holds the makings of a similar endgame.

One major milestone has already been reached. The notion that investments deserve a lower tax than wages has been vaporized. The emperor has no clothes, and really never did.


©2010 Gerald E. Scorse. The author, who writes from New York City, helped pass a bill that tightens the rules for reporting capital gains. His stories are published in the Baltimore Chronicle with his permission.



Copyright © 2010 The Baltimore News Network. All rights reserved.

Republication or redistribution of Baltimore Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without their prior written consent.

Baltimore News Network, Inc., sponsor of this web site, is a nonprofit organization and does not make political endorsements. The opinions expressed in stories posted on this web site are the authors' own.

This story was published on November 22, 2010.
 

Public Service Ads: