Liberals, beware. Sometimes a “victory” is a badly played loss.
Over the weekend, someone at Trump Tower, supposedly, sent the New York Times a little gift. In the envelope was the 1995 tax filing of Donald J. and MARLA Trump. (That would be Marla Maples, the second wife.) What ensued from the “playbook of the left,” as Ann Coulter likes to call it, was a truly unseemly display of financial ignorance and hypocrisy. See, the very deductions Donald Trump took to reduce his tax burden – just like everyone else in the United States does – are the very same ones that people like Hillary Clinton take. Losses are allowed to be claimed as deductions.
In Trump’s case, the loss in 1995 was so large – $915 million – that it dwarfed his actual earnings that year. When one owns a business or is self-employed that is a risk taken. The majority of liberals commenting on the unfairness of the tax code in this case, have always worked FOR SOMEONE ELSE. This reality does not register with them.
(A point to remember here, as has been mentioned by multiple bloggers and alternative writers, is that the 1995 loss was claimed while the Bill Clinton “soak the rich” taxes were in effect. There was also a retro-active tax that hit people like Donald Trump hard. That is reflected in that huge number.)
What made the entire episode so maddening involved the “GOTCHA!” comments from friends and family thinking that the document was a smoking gun. It was nothing of the sort. Remember, EARNINGS are taxed, and if there are none, the government gets nothing. We do not tax wealth and assets in this country. At least not yet. Income taxes have already been paid on wealth and savings not accumulated through pre-tax programs and retirement plans. Do the liberals among us really think that a wealthy man is going to give up extra cash he legally doesn’t have to just because?
Lest anyone think that this writer is just typing to type, she used to be in the business of fundraising where the most important piece of mail any donor ever got from any organization was “The Tax Letter.” That documented contributions so that they could be legally deducted from a person’s taxes. Year end contributions everywhere were generally made AFTER donors figured out how much they had to give in order to get the maximum deduction. It didn’t (and doesn’t) matter who the taxpayer was or is. That’s the way it works.
What liberals accuse Mr. Trump of being is a law-abiding citizen who took advantage of the tax law just like everyone else does. (More on the code and laws themselves below.) What is worse is the accusation that this lack of payment caused material damage to the people of the country in the form of lost revenue that could have been used to build bridges and schools.
The idea that a wealthy man living off of his savings, and not paying any taxes due to NO INCOME caused any capital assets not to be built is just ludicrous. Non-federal roads are financed locally, generally with municipal bonds and a gas tax. The interstate system is partially funded with a gas tax, which is consumption based, and even then the fed never pays the full freight. For example, the newest bridge over the Mississippi River in my hometown cost $667 million, or something like that. The Fed paid about a third of the total price tag for the actual span, and Missouri and Illinois paid for the approaches. That price is LESS than what Donald Trump lost in 1995.
The best statement on what REALLY happens to our federal income taxes came from Natural News, actually:
In reality, the government doesn’t need any tax dollars to fund anything! The entire false narrative that assumes wage earners and business owners have to send money to Washington to pay for roads, bridges and schools is absolute hogwash. Out of the entire federal budget, the vast majority of the money actually goes to paying entitlement benefits (social security, Medicare, unemployement, etc.). See the spending charts here.
Only a tiny fraction of government spending goes to roads, highways and bridges, and most of the money directed toward education ends up as salaries and grants, not building schools for children. The idea that, by taking legally allowed deductions on huge losses, somehow Donald Trump has deprived America of schools and roads isn’t just absurd; it’s the height of financial illiteracy.
Not only that, the question really should be asked why the doggone tax code is so complicated in the first place. So complicated, in fact, that an entire industry has popped up around it. (Yes, I just answered my own question.) Whoever was in charge when the darn system was set up (hint: NOT conservatives) put it together to benefit SOMEONE, and some group of people. Why is there a problem when Americans take advantage of the system the way it was set up?
Oh, that’s right. Because RICH people are expected to carry more of the burden even when they employ the very sorts of people maligning them and pay their payroll taxes. (Another aspect of taxation in the US that inspired an industry. Ever try to do a payroll by hand and then record it in accounting software?)
Well, hate to tell the liberals this, but across the board, Trump supporters really don’t care. In fact most of us get that releasing the document was a breach of journalism ethics. The real problem liberals have is with the law since so many people out there take advantage of the loopholes. (Mark Zuckerberg, George Soros, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett – do the libs think these people pay a dime more in taxes than they have to?) If that’s the problem, then ask lawmakers to close the loopholes.
Considering the far worse bombshells in Hillary Clinton’s financial closet, why Trump is being persecuted for following the law smacks of envy. Not class envy. Plain old greed envy. Les Deplorables get that.