Taxing Questions

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President Trump vowed to drain the swamp and to reduce both personal and corporate taxes. Growth should offset those numbers and reducing or eliminating some federal departments such as Education and gutting others such as the EPA will help. But what about the IRS?

We know that President Trump, while a businessman, was hounded by the IRS and that Barack used them as his personal attack dog to launch against political enemies.

Will there be needed changes in that bureaucracy? Will the tax code be fixed and reduced to a manageable size? These are bonuses that would save ever business and every taxpayer money, likely not costing the government anything  –  but are they a bridge too far for a single four year presidential term? There are a lot of precious porkbarrel items in that massive tax code that lobbyists will work (on behalf of clients) to retain. The unbounded protection of sugar is one of the biggest. A clue to his intentions will come when he appoints a Secretary of the Treasury.

Then again, it’s always better to do business in cash when possible.

16 thoughts on “Taxing Questions

  1. Just ask Arnie Schwartzenegger how well using populism to effect change works when pitted against deeply entrenched bureaucracies.

    One of the most useless bureaucracies known to mankind is the Department of Education, something that just about every GOP presidential has vowed to eliminate. And look at it now: as deeply entrenched and solid as the Rock of Gibralter, except that the Rock of Gibralter remains roughly the same size, year after year. Not the Dept of Ed, no siree Bob. It gets its 8% increase in budget every damn year. Without exception.

    The IRS will remain as currently configured for the rest of your life, LL. Take that to the bank.

    Your cynical, curmudgeonly reader

  2. Housing and Urban Development is more worthless than Education – if indeed that's possible. Maybe they're equally worthless?

  3. Government would prefer to eliminate cash – except when they need a billion in hard currency to pay off Iran. Then it's useful.

  4. First step Trump can take with a stroke of a pen. All government employees fly coach. No more business or first class.

    Oh yeah, I can hear the howls about morale. Tough. The airlines will complain about the lost revenue. Everyone will point at Trump's personal 757. Hey, become a billionaire and you can have one too.

  5. I agree. There is no reason that government employees should fly first/business class on domestic flights. I think more leeway needs to be given to overseas flights when those employees are expected to go to work upon landing. I don't know what it's like under Obama. In the past there was scrutiny on business class overseas flights, but it was allowed – particularly when they wanted you to land in China or Australia (for example) and needed you at work, jet lag and all. I have flown in the back of the airplane to China several times while working for the government and it's a real grind when you need to actually do something the day that you land.

    Now that I'm older, all travel that I do as a consultant for this or that person or company is stipulated as First or Business Class. If that's an issue for clients, they can find somebody else to be their huckleberry. Back of the airplane for a larger guy like me, on a cross-country flight, means that I usually take pills to put myself down (like a rabid pit bull).

  6. I completely understand the back of the airplane vs size. I'm 6', obese, and wore a size 52 coat when I went in the Army at 185 lbs. Quit a part time job I loved (testing prototype vehicles) because I got tired of the whole flight experience.

    I can only imagine long transoceanic flights.

  7. My shoulders extend beyond the boundaries of a US coach seat and even if I 'scrunch', there are practical limits. In inter-Asian flights the seats are 3/4 size US seats and they've got less legroom. I can't fit in them, thus the need to fly business or first class. I could buy two Asian seats, I guess, but there is no legroom for the American shanks.

  8. There were/are waivers for business if the flight is over 14 hours. And yes the back of the bus sucked!!!

  9. Jill Stein (Hillary Clinton’s) recount is akin to Michael Brown’s father standing in front of an angry mob of rioters after our judicial system found Officer Wilson innocent of murder, begging them to burn the city of Ferguson to the ground. Instead of finding ways to help heal and bring our nation together after a extremely contentious election, the Democrats have managed to find a way to keep our nation on edge. Democrats have made it clear by their bad post-election behavior, that they are unwilling to accept the results of the election and move on. Instead of regrouping and figuring out what they need to do to win back the voters they’ve lost, they’re going to drag and already divided America through a recount based on nothing more than hope.

  10. The comparison to Brown's father are apt.

    They're spoiled children and there's nobody to give them a spanking except the American voter – and they were none too happy to be hauled out back of the wood shed.

  11. "Will there be needed changes in that bureaucracy?" you ask. The answer is a demonstrable, emphatic 'no.' Arnie couldn't use his populist ground swelll to defeat those 'girly men' in Sacramento, and Donald will run into the same formidable foes during his efforts to 'drain the swamp' in a much swampier mess than Sacramento in the Washington DC morass. Those gators and snapping turtles have seen the likes of The Donald before, and nothing has changed. Reagan, Dubya, whatever. Ain't no drainin' of no swamp gonna be goin' on, LL. They'll just keep their heads down, hunker down, circle the wagons, they'll be fine.

    The swamp is probably at this point un-drainable. But it makes for good rhetoric at this point in time. Red meat for the faithful, etc. Been dere, done dat.

  12. My hubby always flew coach while working for the Navy. And if Romney gets a spot on Trump's cabinet, I will be disappointed.
    I try to be patient and wait an see.

  13. Arnold never had a Republican legislature to work with. That may make the difference. Reagan did, though.

    I think that the whole mess is very difficult to deal with – Byzantines couldn't teach the US bureaucracy anything.

  14. I doubt that Romney will end up as SECSTATE. At this point his name is red meat for the media and the never Trump people to chew on. I am not crystal balling who it will end up being. I think that Rudy Giuliani may not be up to the task of doing it right. Hillary clearly wasn't either. It's a very challenging job and there have to be a lot of personnel changes if you want to make it work. State is another swamp that may be too Byzantine to change.

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