Higher Taxes Without Changing Tax Rates?

Changing tax rates tends to get a lot of media attention, the kind of attention that makes for an almost certain death for politicians in an election year.  But fear of media attention does not mean that the men and women in Washington stop trying to raise money.  To skip the battle over true tax […]

Declaring Independence

The Declaration of Independence is rightly called the founding document of the American political tradition; it articulates the fundamental ideas that form the American nation. As a practical matter, the Declaration of Independence announced to the world — and shouted to Great Britain — the unanimous decision of the colonies to separate themselves from the […]

1929 to Now

We often look at the American economy in two stages, pre- and post-1929, because the stock market crash of 1929, the subsequent catastrophe of the Great Depression, the devastation of World War II, and the Cold War that followed, had profound effects on the American psyche. We are not the same country we were in […]

Congress Votes to Extend Business Tax Breaks

  Do we have reason to celebrate? The House Ways and Means Committee recently agreed to make permanent handful of business tax breaks that expired in December 2013. Included in the bill now advancing to a full House vote are:   §179 expensing: This would maintain the expensing level at $500,000 that existed before extenders […]

Senate Finance Committee Extends Section 179D Tax Deduction

We’ve spoken a lot about expired tax provisions recently and it looks like we finally got a bit of a reprieve.  Earlier this month, the Senate Finance Committee voted to approve a two-year extension of the Energy Efficient Commercial Buildings Tax Deduction (Section 179D).  This was part of the Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency […]

Avoiding Sales Tax By Buying Online

Of all the taxes paid in the United States, sales tax is perhaps the easiest to understand.  Unless you live in one of the five states that do not collect sales tax (Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire, and Oregon), you are quite used to going down to the store and paying the sales tax on […]

How Big Companies Avoid Big Tax Bills

Minimizing taxes is every person and company’s goal.  Individuals have various ways to avoid tax legally by using structured tax shelters or changing their place of residence.  Multinational corporations, meanwhile, have found increasingly ingenious ways to exploit loopholes in international tax rules in order to reduce their taxes.   Apple Inc., for example, whose corporate headquarters […]

New Proposed Tax Reform from Dave Camp

Lower tax rates?  Not really.  The outgoing chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Dave Camp (R-Michigan), put forth on Wednesday his proposal for a simplified tax code.  Like any broad tax reform plan, Camp’s plan contains much for both Democrats and Republicans to embrace and much for them to oppose.  The effects on […]

Newest Obamacare Delay for Mid-Size Businesses

In the latest big delay of the Obamacare rollout, the Treasury Department announced yesterday that many employers won’t face a fine next year if they fail to offer employees health insurance. Under the original 2010 Affordable Care Act, employers with the equivalent of at least 50 full-time workers had to offer health coverage or pay […]

Tax Issues For Small Business in 2014

Taxes are, historically, the number one issue business owners identify as a potential challenge to their businesses.  2014 is proving to be no exception to this rule.  A number of professional surveys of small business owners, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) among them, indicate uncertain tax policy and rising tax rates are at […]