Sunday, October 02, 2016

Trump Doesn't Pay Taxes; Should He?

   I'm going to go ahead and provisionally conclude from this that Trump just basically doesn't pay taxes. Is that bad? I mean, assuming that it's all legal? (Does a question mark go at the end of that last sentence? Or what?)
   I mean, the law's the law...if you can legally reduce your tax bill, is it bad to do so? Or is that only bad for the filthy stinking rich? I honestly don't know. I thought Clinton had a good point and a good line when she said that it means that he's not paying for schools, nor for national defense, etc. Smart point, and rhetorically good too if you like that sort of thing. But presumably it's all legal... I suppose we've got a responsibility to help support the kind of infrastructure (broadly construed) that the government provides? Uh...right? But couldn't you say roughly that tax law codifies exactly what your responsibilities come to in this respect? Following the law = fulfilling your responsibilities?
   However the moral question gets answered, I'm not sure that this will bother people already inclined to support Trump. My guess is that they might generally agree with his assessment that it makes him smart. (Though actually, what it makes him (in both senses of 'make') is rich. In the evidential sense, it shows that he's rich, not smart, in that it shows that he can afford tricky accountants. And saving that much money can also make you (in the causal sense) rich. I mean that's a lot of scratch. )
   But then Trump apparently doesn't pay anybody. And, y'know, taking shit from people without paying, that makes you smart, too. If by 'smart' you mean "a big fat crook."

2 Comments:

Blogger Pete Mack said...

The question is how real that 900m loss was. That was in a year the stock market gained 27%, so it's hard to believe he actually lost 900m of his own money. How much was actually the bank's money. How much was based on an inflated valuation? It's pretty murky

12:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ok, it may be legal. Isn't it wrong though? A billionaire paying nothing in federal income taxes for nearly two decades while most of us pay significant income taxes is...just fine? I suspect this is going to hurt him even if his tax lawyers did right by their client. It's not like he's ever objected to that system or said you know what I think this is wrong that people like me can pay no income taxes for decades. He's done everything to hide this from the public and is proposing policies that will continue benefiting people like him. To me this is really more about the substantive issues in this election (for once!), like the GOP's approach to tax policy, than just about Trump. But Trump is now the face of that tax policy. He now looks like a failed businessman who was given bailout after bailout by the federal government while most people don't get that kind of help. It's also an amazing development when just four years ago the GOP was going crazy claiming that half of Americans don't pay federal income taxes, and now they learn that their billionaire candidate doesn't pay these taxes. But of course there's no outrage about it. They just shrug.

7:59 AM  

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