Tag: Inheritance tax

Baby Steps

While watching “Rounders” the other night on Netflix (A guy finds himself owing a lot of money, with very little time to put together the required scratch) I was reminded of how our government, also finding itself behind the eight ball, is bobbing and weaving, checking underneath sofa cushions, and pulling out all the stops to put together their own scratch. The difference being, obviously, that their apparent urgency is all for show. Grandma is not going to break both their legs if they come up short. Print more money, raise the debt ceiling, put the squeeze on the rich folks, it’s all good.

This faux flurry of activity has proven interesting in that little defections here and there are popping up. One tax that is getting looked at again is the inheritance tax. I have been on record in more than a few posts here in proclaiming this one of the most insipid, punitive, and altogether unreasonable taxes that has ever been devised by government functionaries. It goes way beyond double taxation and no matter how much lipstick or window dressing it comes with, it is nothing more than blatant thievery. But some Democrats have staked a position, and their hopes of reelection on this issue, proving that not all of them are dirty rotten poltroons;

But Ms. Landrieu, along with a notable handful of Democratic colleagues, parts ways with the White House on one increasingly thorny issue: the president’s call to raise the estate tax as part of Washington’s bid to strike a deficit-cutting deal before year’s end.

“This particular tax is inherently unfair,” Ms. Landrieu said, adding that she would oppose any year-end deficit-reduction package that raises the estate tax. “That’s a make-or-break for me.”

You would think that putting the squeeze on the rich to pay even higher percentage of the already paid taxes would also fall into that “unfair” category, but good for her to draw the line somewhere.

That anyone would think any inheritance or estate tax proper just boggles the mind. Be a good citizen, work hard and partake of the American dream, pay all your taxes while accumulating wealth, doing everything right, but don’t think that your private property is really yours because when you die, the government comes a knocking, expecting to wet it’s beak.

Mr. Obama has proposed raising the tax on inheritances, which would hit some family-owned businesses and farms. Though just a small portion of estates are large enough to incur the tax, the issue is emotionally charged, partly because the levies can force heirs to sell off land or businesses that have been in a family for years.

The “portion” of those estates affected depends on the size of the estate that is exempt. The $1 million exemption is total bullshit, that is nothing. Even the $3.5 million ceiling is too arbitrary for my tastes. Family farms or businesses can easily exceed this threshold, most do not have the liquidity to pay the estate tax, so it gets sold, what a travesty.

Many Republicans support repeal altogether.

Of course, that is the only fair solution. And although I would not expect Landrieu and her dem buddies to get behind a total repeal, not bowing to the wealth redistributor in chief seems reasonable, and will play big with the home crowd for her re election bid.