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Death Tax Repeal

Mary Katharine Ham has a great roundup of Death Tax repeal blogging. Most notably, the Club for Growth is marathon blogging the Senate vote.

Comments (72)

LorieYou ou... (Below threshold)


You ought to be ashamed of yourself and your Party.

So===let's repeal the so-called Death Tax/

First==the "Death Tax" label is one of those Republican "1984" language usages, developed in part by that polling prick Frank Luntz, to fool the average voter into thinking that this is some sort of tax that falls on everyone.

Wrong--it affects about 1 out of every 200 people; 99.9% of the Inheritance tax is paid by just 5% of the population.

It's a big break for the Chimp who would stand to hoard an additional $6.2 million; Cheney would save over $60 mil; Rummy would net about $100 mil.

The ten year cost of this tax break for the richest elite would be 1 trillion dollars, resulting in an additional $3000 Birth Tax for every new borm child, added to the $33000 Birth Tax for newborns that currently exists. This, thanks to the outrageus deficits run up by Reagan/Bush/Bush over the past 25 years.

The Inheritance Tax was 1st proposed and enacted under another Republican, T Roosevelt as a Progressive reform to reign in the tendency for inherited wealth to accumulate in the hands of the few elitists.

The Give-it-all-to-the Rich Republicans have never been able to document a single family's loss of a farm due to the Inheritance Tax, though that is the lying propaganda spewed by these pigs all the time.

With programs like this repeal, designed to concentrate even more wealth in the hands of the few, Republicans prove that they are no different from the Lords & Nobles and Privileged Pigs of the Renaissance, nothwithstanding the passage of half a millenium of social history.

LoriePS ... (Below threshold)


PS Among other things, I neglected to mention that the top 10% of the richest Americans already control 70% of this nation's wealth.

That leaves a piddling 30% of the wealth to be divied up amongst 266 million Americans.

mak44,You can vomi... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:


You can vomit all the bile you want.

It does not change the fact that it is an unfair DOUBLE tax on income already earned.

Have fun with your strawmen. I'm sure they keep you good company.

PS - You really need to take a break from all of your warm and fuzzy commenting. You seem like an aneurysm waiting to happen.

Sheik Yur Bouty aka Hojo... (Below threshold)

Sheik Yur Bouty aka Hojon

Clearly, you enjoy being a Pavlovian Puppy, fed w/ lying garbage from your Republican masters.

You are part of the evidenvce that the typical Republican voter is a fool who doesn't know on which side of his bread is the butter.

If you're not a part of that top 10%, you are just a fool carrying their water.

mak44 (ooh, I can do... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:

mak44 (ooh, I can do html codes too!)

How does it feel to be the world champion of projection?

It would probably surprise you, but I don't have any Republican masters, lying or otherwise. I am the Republican masters' worst nightmare.

Mmmmmmmm, I love bread and butter. Stop it, you're making me hungry.

PS - What is a Hojon?

As for this comment above, ... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

As for this comment above, "It's a big break for the Chimp who would stand to hoard an additional $6.2 million; Cheney would save over $60 mil; Rummy would net about $100 mil." I say cool.

I would much rather Dick Cheney or George Bush have that money available to contribute to charity (they are quite generous unlike Clinton/Gore)rather than have it go into some wasteful ineffective government program. Heck, I would prefer them have it to spend on cars or boats or for their daughters to buy expensive shoes or clothing or anything else they wanted (creating jobs for those in those industries) than it go to the government. I don't know about Rummy's charitable giving, but suspect it is likewise more substantial than the Clinton/Gore example.

When I read the line above about dividing the remaining wealth I knew I could not argue free market capitalism. Instead of whining because you weren't given a bigger piece of the pie, you should be working to make the pie bigger.

LorieGood f... (Below threshold)


Good for you Lorie, and I presume your birthing years are past or that you have no children who will receive the Republican Birth Tax of $36000 for every child born, thanks to GOP deficit spending.

Free market Capitalism may have existed in the past, but your understanding of economics is severely limited if you think that's what exists today. Try Predatory Capitalism. And you Republicans are the Tyronsauri Rex masters when it comes to that.

BTW The jobs created by Bush/Cheney et al dribbling out their wealth for self-comfort would be mostly for the subsistence wages to which Republicans are dedicated in order that they can maintain the most obscene distribution of national wealth ever known in human history.

Lorie,Not to menti... (Below threshold)
Sheik Yur Bouty:


Not to mention the ten year cost of this tax break...since under the worldview of "people" like mak44 everything belongs to the goverment and the goverment allows us to keep some of "its" money.

No, Sheik...it belongs to t... (Below threshold)

No, Sheik...it belongs to the people who are or were part of that production of wealth, the workers, as well as the entrepreneur, who himself is only one of the many workers, all of whom made that wealth possible. Without workers, there would be no Sam Walton or Bill Gates empires.

No heir of Sam Walton ever produced his $18 billion share of inherited wealth solely through his, and only through his very own labors.

"No, Sheik...it belongs to ... (Below threshold)

"No, Sheik...it belongs to the people who are or were part of that production of wealth, the workers,"

...who were "paid" when they had these things called "jobs."

"No heir of Sam Walton ever produced his $18 billion share of inherited wealth solely through his, and only through his very own labors."

...but they did produce quite a lot of it by continuing to work for Wal-Mart and reinvest that money, as opposed to people like yourself who want to get a piece of it for no reason whatsoever.

I am a worker, and an entre... (Below threshold)

I am a worker, and an entrepeneur, and I don't want anybody's hands in my family's wallet, perty please.

Take your socialism somewhere else. Maybe you and Commandante Chavez can pow-wow and get this all worked out.

Why is it that the idiots want to run the economy when they can barely manage their own miserable life? The rest of us are doing just find without your mismanagement.

My favorite concept is that... (Below threshold)

My favorite concept is that the 'rest of us' have to divvy up 30% of the wealth.

Only if you subscribe to the Second Law of Liberal Economics: Wealth is Neither Created nor Destroyed.

Sorry KingYour alc... (Below threshold)

Sorry King

Your alchemy isn't working- the pie has been a 70-30 split, more or less, for the past 75 years at least. Under the Republicans, the divide creeps back to 70% over that period.

Your economic slogans about the creation of wealth just don't fly with this most obscene maldistribution of wealth.


Never wanted any of the Walton wealth-but had I worked there, it would have been nice to have a living wage. Problem is, Cirby, there are no merchandise marts that supply the daily gruel that can be purchased w/ Wal-Mart wages. The onlf affordable housing for their employees is a piece of cardboard under an overpass.

Yeah Cirby, the Waltons broke their poor little backs totally by themselves, struggling to accumulate their piddling wealth.

Your simplistic economics does not function in a society where one man's "labor" is supposedly worth 85000% more than another man's. You are not a proponent of Capitalism; you are a proponent of Pigism.

"Never wanted any of the Wa... (Below threshold)

"Never wanted any of the Walton wealth-but had I worked there, it would have been nice to have a living wage. Problem is, Cirby, there are no merchandise marts that supply the daily gruel that can be purchased w/ Wal-Mart wages."

So what?

Entry-level jobs aren't supposed to support people. That's why they're entry-level jobs. After even a short time, if you're not a complete idiot, you can move up into better-paying jobs, or get a job somewhere else that pays you more. At worst, get that crappy entry-level job (or two), work hard, and keep looking for another job that pays more.

If you are a complete idiot, sit around and complain that, due to a complete lack of effort on your part, you can only get a job shelving widgets for $6/hour or thereabouts. Hell, even at Wal-Mart, you can make $7 an hour doing "overnight stock." At 40 hours a week, that's still over a thousand bucks a month, at least $800 take home. Live with a roommate or three, eat cheap (buy at Wal-Mart), don't spend $20 a day on beer, use public transport, and you'll still have money at the end of the month.

By the way: if you really need some more money, sign on for one of those "hard" jobs, doing stuff like roofing or construction work, and make wo to four times as much as you would at those McJobs. As long as you show up to work and do something like an okay job, you'll have plenty of work.

On the other hand, there are plenty of opportunities for people to advance, even at Wal-Mart, and a lot of the "dead end" jobs are just "filler" for people who have either got other jobs (and want to make some extra cash) or are retired (and want to make some extra cash while getting out of the ouse a few hours a week.

"Yeah Cirby, the Waltons broke their poor little backs totally by themselves, struggling to accumulate their piddling wealth."


I'm one the effected ones b... (Below threshold)

I'm one the effected ones by Liberal scum wanting to pick my pocket because they are too parasitic to earn their own. They are too lazy to even steal it themselves, they send the government to do it. Like Sheik already pointed out it's already been taxed (he said once) at every opportunity but that's not enough for the greed of liberalism, they want all they can of everyone else's earnings, saves the lazy turds the trouble of having to earn it themsellves. Mah can starve for all I care, he claims it's in the name of equality but he couldn't even see equal with someone willing to earn their own living if he had the Hubble Telescope and sense enough to use it.

There are State death taxes... (Below threshold)

There are State death taxes as well as Federal. I believe in the current state I reside, after my total estate (including retirement, home [land prices having skyrocketed thanks to the Californians: many folks own little shacks on an acre that now make them millionaires on paper, but if they sell they'd have to move a far bit east to find land and home prices to make it worthwhile], insurance proceeds and savings) exceeds one million bucks, they take a hefty chunk for the People's Republic of Portland. Now they used to just take a chunk of the money that would otherwise go to the Federal Estate Tax, but when it was reduced in 2003, they had to plan for what was projected to be a $90million/year loss. So even if the Federal Estate Tax is completely repealed, expect the States to take up the slack.

Mak keep Your greedy though... (Below threshold)

Mak keep Your greedy thoughts off of My inheritance!

VirgoYou go ahead ... (Below threshold)


You go ahead and keep BOTH pennies your momma left you for your inheritance.

cirbyWhat y... (Below threshold)


What you believe in is Feudalism.

There are 10's of thousands working those so-called entry-level jobs at Wal-Mart.

The public is picking up billions of dollars in costs of health care, among other publicly subsidized costs abandoned by Wal-Mart in its pursuit of obscene capitol wealth..

The idea that it is the Walton's money is ludicrous. Without their employees, the Waltons wouldn't have 2 nickles to rub together.

Republicans have done everything possible to undercut living wages, beginning w/ a sub-par minimum wage that has been in effect since they got their hands on Congress.

Your ideas expressed above are absurdly naive. We have long-ago reached a point in this economy where it takes 2 working parents to scrape out a living & then they are only 1 illness away from bankruptcy or poverty. The real wages of Americans have declined or remained stagnant under Bush even tho productivity has increased tremendously.

Your concept of entry level wages is classist at best w/ the notion that some are entitled to no better than subsistence compensation without health care, paid vacation etc. while the entrepreneur is entitled to and deserves the most outrageous compensation ever seen to date.

One thing for sure: without the laborer there would not be the Capitalist & his wealth accumulation.

There is f

VirgoUnless... (Below threshold)


Unless you are a Walton your inheritance is highly unlikely to ever be subject to the inheritance tax-even as the tax law stands today.

Bullwinkle+drool-laden k... (Below threshold)

Bullwinkle+drool-laden keyboard=Bullsh_t

Although I personaly would ... (Below threshold)

Although I personaly would love it to go to zero, I doubt it. More likely the compromise will be the capital gains rate. Commie boy notwithstanding, even a lot a libs are coming to the conclusion that as baby boomers they stand to inherit a lot more than they ever thought as Epador pointed out by way of inflated real estate combined with life insurance policies. Now that the youngest boomers are now in their 40's if one adds what they are going to inherit plus what they already have in their own assets, they are looking at a huge inheritance problem for their children. Particularly in the Blue States. They will just rich enough to get thoroughly hosed but unlike the super rich , not able to minimize the damage lawfully. When the upper middle class libs put two plus two together there will be a lot more bipartisan support for lowering the rate.

"What you believe in is Feu... (Below threshold)

"What you believe in is Feudalism."

So when did Wal-Mart get those laws passed that effectively made corporations the owners and/or liege-holders of the people who voluntarily work for them, and when did the employees of a particular store get made serfs, belonging to the company that owns that building? I know a lot of folks who have worked for WM over the years, none of them have been given lashes for fleeing their jobs, and vey few have the King's men out looking for them to return them to their old jobs.

Which members of the Walton family get the privilege of droit de seigneur?

"There are 10's of thousands working those so-called entry-level jobs at Wal-Mart."

Yes, there are (out of 300,000,000 Americans), and a helluva lot of them are using that opening to move up the company ranks. A bunch of others are part-timers, helping pay for college, and a lot more of them are retired folks who were looking for a little job for some extra cash. It takes a real moron to expect to make a lifelong, lucrative career out of being the greeter at a Wal-Mart store.

"The idea that it is the Walton's money is ludicrous."

Only if you're a Commmunist or Socialist, and you'd have to be really ignorant to try and pretend that particular philosophy worked out. Property ownership is the basis of liberty, starting with the idea that people own themselves, and are free to work for whoever they choose.

Without the Walmarts and co... (Below threshold)

Without the Walmarts and corporations mak44 hates so much there would be no jobs for the working man he purports to support. Mak44 is just like every other socialist I know...incapable of competing so the only thing they try to do is make sure everyone is equally miserable. Socialism is by far the worse disease to strike mankind and has been responsible for the death of human spirit and millions of lives.

It's amazing how some peopl... (Below threshold)

It's amazing how some people think they have a right to pick my pocket when I die because they are wastes of oxygen. It's also amazing that if I don't think that my kids should have what I earned stolen from them it's bullshit. Get off your lazy ass and make your own Mak, if you're so much smarter than I am you should be able to make quite a bit more than I did. Parasite.

Mak44 relax ... Nobody's go... (Below threshold)

Mak44 relax ... Nobody's gonna tax all those aborted babies. You libs would owe trillions

CirbyWhile ... (Below threshold)


While what you literally describe above constitutes Feudalism, my point was just that the typical worker's position today is not all that much different from the serf's of yesteryear save for a few differences in formalized law.

That the median family income today is +/- $40K, meaning that 50% of laborers earn less than that, I'd say that the significant difference between an 1100AD serf and a worker today is not that much. The worker may be "free" but his choices are about as limited as the serf's. Today's worker has just enough income to assure that he will s\expend every bit of it just to try to make ends meet and still likely be in need-particularly w/ health care and providing for his post-work years.

So what's the big difference from the "Company Store?" Add in the credit card phenomenon and there's not a dime's worth of difference.

And the Capitolist masters, while not officially titled nobility, are nonetheless in a comparable position save legal entitlement to bind a serf in labor. Given the Republican change in bankruptcy laws for the benefit of banks & lenders, even that distinction has been blurred.

Folks maybe we ought to sta... (Below threshold)

Folks maybe we ought to start a movement to tax people based on how they vote. Put your money where your mouth is.
Last time I looked, I did not see that special card in my wallet the DoD gives to the high roller tax payers in case of an imminent attack. The FBI doesn't answer my 911 calls. The Secret Service doesn't provide me with a security detail. No special reserved lanes on the interstate for me. No welfare, medicaid or other subsidies for me. Just one vote, same as everyone else. Oh goodness gracious! I do get one thing commie boy doesn't get!. I get to have an IRS account specialist who politely inquires if I am one day late in filling my returns. It's nice to loved.

TimIt's you... (Below threshold)


It's yours and everyone's children who are born w/ that liability which is just as appropriate to call a Republican Birth Tax as for the Republicans, serving the top 5% of wealth-holders, to call the Inheritance Tax a Death Tax.

That Republican Birth Tax reflects the $9 trillion debt, of which about 85% was run up by Republicans, significantly due to their penchant for tax-cutting almost exclusively to the benefit of the wealthiest.

And attempts to dismiss this giveaway to the rich w/ the Ludicrous Laugher Curve won't fly, no matter what simplistic concepts about enhanced revenues are trotted out. The National Debt accrued under Reagan/Bush/Bush is proof that the Laugher Curve is pure alchemy/

"Unless you are a Walton yo... (Below threshold)
Tom M:

"Unless you are a Walton your inheritance is highly unlikely to ever be subject to the inheritance tax-even as the tax law stands today."

I stand to inherit a business worth way less than a million dollars. I could pay as much as 36%. I built that company up for more than 18 years, while my parents enjoy a late-received, frugal, but well-earned retirement. At least a third of my repeat customers learned their trade with their fathers help. If its fair to tax me on that value, than it should be valued from when I started day-to-day management duties.

Heck, I would prefer the... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

Heck, I would prefer them have it to spend on cars or boats or for their daughters to buy expensive shoes or clothing or anything else they wanted (creating jobs for those in those industries) than it go to the government. Lorie Byrd

is one of those wasteful, ineffective gov't programs the war in iraq? let's not forget that Americans during WWII were encouraged to buy war bonds. You would be investing in the future of your country for the sake of your fellow Americans instead of fattening the pocketbooks of some CEO somewhere. God forbid gov't has money, during a time of war no less!

Why is it that the idiots want to run the economy when they can barely manage their own miserable life? The rest of us are doing just find without your mismanagement. Mitchell

Can I substitute personal life for economy and say the same thing about Repubs? well golly, yes, I can.

Folks maybe we ought to start a movement to tax people based on how they vote. Cubanbob

So how would this work? Since Repubs won the election, only Repubs have to pay taxes? Then if this happened, the Repubs would want to lose so they don't have to pay taxes and Dems take over gov't. My goodness, I think you've found the Dems campaign strategy.

Back to some serious discussion.

Bob you had a decent point before with some baby boomers potentially becoming eligible for the estate tax. So legislation in response could be to peg it along with inflation instead of revoking it entirely. The same could be done with the AMT that looms over the middle class, and arguably this should be addressed first since it will be affecting a much larger demographic.

sean nyc/aa <p... (Below threshold)

sean nyc/aa

Remarkably fair idea. But it was tested out awhile back by Sen. Feingold who introduced an amendment to exempt the 1st $100 million from the inheritance tax &....guess what? The Repubs killed it.

Apparently there are too many small businesses that exceed a $100 million in capitalization. Not to mention the modest cottages owned by Repubs that have leaped in value to centi-million dollar shacks.

Just goes to show who they really want to serve.

@Lint for brainsI ... (Below threshold)

@Lint for brains

I said Mak keep His greedy thoughts off My inheritance, but since You budded in You keep Your commie grubbing thoghts off My Mommas 2 pennys too!

virgoAre yo... (Below threshold)


Are you sure that your English usage doesn't preclude you from entitlement to citizenship?

Or are you one of Bush's "child left behind?"

I stand to inherit a bus... (Below threshold)
sean nyc/aa:

I stand to inherit a business worth way less than a million dollars. Tom M

Couldn't you work out a deal with your parents to buy the business from your parents instead of inherit it and pay taxes? Granted, the cost could be even more if you pay fair market value (which you could probably skirt if you have a good relationship), so that makes the estate tax seem fair.

Looking at it in a different light, the estate tax is the epitome of the "ownership society." You own your wealth, not your kids. So if they want it, it's like winning prizes on a game show or in a raffle which they still must pay taxes on (think Richard Hatch, but don't think about him too much cause he is gay and you might start thinking naughty thoughts). Sorry repubs, this is the society you want America to be, so deal with it.

Just out of curiousity, when did the estate tax get signed into law? According to mak, Teddy Roosevelt signed it into law. Doesn't he know real conservatives are all about tax cuts all the time. If only Teddy were alive today, we could brand him a liberal environmentalist whackjob who wants to take our money after we're dead, in a time of war no less!!

PS: In case you haven't noticed, it's really dawning on me that Republican governance is a joke and must be treated as such.

I wonder who got Teddys inh... (Below threshold)

I wonder who got Teddys inheritance and if they appreciated His stupendous generosity.

sean nyc/aa read before tho... (Below threshold)

sean nyc/aa read before thou speak. your picking up maks bad habits. if people paid the way the voted, they would pay based on their ideology. the problem isn't just the totality of spending, but what were spending on. I fail to see why as a taxpayer it's my obligation to pay for other people's medical bills or child support. they are not doing me any favors with my money. you want to be a sport, do it with your money not mine. this country was founded on the principle of personal freedom, not socialist redistribution.
It's time to rollback the FDR new deal and Johnson's foolishness.

The death tax receipts each... (Below threshold)

The death tax receipts each year are pretty de minimus in the whole scheme of the fed. budget. In light of the high compliance costs and disruptions to small and not so small businesses that comprise many, if not most, of the assets subjected to the tax, I would say it is a pretty marginal way to collect tax, and since it's double taxation, an unfair tax.

What about the many family farms and other small businesses that have had to be mortgaged and sold to pay the tax? You libs. act like you know what you're talking about, but unless you actually have acquired/made appreciable assets, or are a lawyer or CPA, you might take a breath to realize what you all you are ignorant of (a lot, as it stands in this thread).

I have a law degree, Masters in finance, and assets. When you tofu eating turkeys have fully educated yourselves or have some real life experience (aren't you supposed to be of the "reality based community"?), give us all a break from your empty rant.

You c0cksuckers never met saw a large tax you didn't love, or actually had to pay.

Forgive the typos, since un... (Below threshold)

Forgive the typos, since unlike you libs., I work for a living, not 9-5, have to actually get results, and if I don't, I don't get to come whining to someone else to make it right for me.

Mitchell A... (Below threshold)


As typical of the posters here, you don't know what you are talking about.

The Repubs have never been able to cite 1 single farm or small business that has been lost due to the Inheritance Tax.So stop reswilling the lying Repub propaganda crap: or are you just a Pavlovian Puppy who salivates and regurgitates any crap with which Repubs have filled you?

If you're a lawyer, I wouldn't hire you, if all you can do is repeat lying propaganda.

"The Repubs have never been... (Below threshold)

"The Repubs have never been able to cite 1 single farm or small business that has been lost due to the Inheritance Tax."

...except that's not the question.

When you ask the real question, you find out that about four out of ten businesses would have to borrow against equity to pay the tax in the first place (not enough cash assets), and about 30% would end up selling all or part of the business because they had no other way to come up with the cash. By demanding "failures" instead of "businesses that get screwed up to the point where they end up going out of business in the next few years," you try to dodge the question.

It's also part of the reason companies like Wal-Mart (Remember how much you hate them? Well, you're helping them out, in this case) keep knocking long-term family stores out of the market. A family-owned grocery store has to deal with, among other things, having to sell all or part of its assets when the founder dies, or take expensive measures to try and avoid much of the inheritance burden.

Really large family-owned corporations have many ways of dodging the tax, so you're really just stacking the deck against everyone else who is trying to build a large company, and making it easier for the Wal-Marts and Home Depots and such, in the long term.

Mak44 sounds like the nasty... (Below threshold)

Mak44 sounds like the nasty kid who busts up other kids toys because he never got one from his drunkard, battling parents.

Mak, the death tax is confiscatory, punitive and based on a flawed ethos that people really DON'T own their own property..it is just on lease from the government.

If Sadie can leave the family sterling flatware to her grandkids, then Mildren can leave the family portfolio.

I'm sorry your parents didn't even have a pisspot to leave you.

Seek.therapy.instead of trying to ruin other people's rights to dispose of THEIR property as per their OWN wishes.

DarleenYou'... (Below threshold)


You're full of sh_t. This has nothing to do w/ my inheritance, which, by the way was substantial... and part of it was subject to tax. Didn't bother me at all.


You are talking out your rear oriface. Sen. Feingold already has dsemonstrated that this has nothing to do w/ small business or the family farm. He offered an amendment to exempt the 1st $100 million from tax and it was soundly defeated by Repub senators who are carrying the water for the super-rich.

You are a perfect example of the typical Repub voter who doesn't realize that he has been brainwashed w/ lying propaganda.

Why don't you go out and read some info about what your party is doing? You won't find that sort of info on Fox.

If you're trying to make a point, you'll have to do better than regurgitating Repub chyme.

Yes and Sen Feingold is suc... (Below threshold)

Yes and Sen Feingold is such a pillar of truth that You Mak, regurgitate His pavlovian Marxist talking points as if it means something.

Right on Darleen, the Makulas of this world want everything done for them at the expense of all our privacy and property rights.

Bullwinkle+drool-lade... (Below threshold)

Bullwinkle+drool-laden keyboard=Bullsh_t

...he explained.

Virgo"yo... (Below threshold)


"you ignorsnt slut....."

Your response about Feingold reflects just what an abominably silly fool that you are.

The point I made was that Feingold's $100 million exemption amendment was voted dowen by the Repub Senate because the Repubs are seeking tax relief for the super-rich and are not the least concerned about the little guy.

You make a poll-parrot look like an intellectual giant.

"The point I made was that ... (Below threshold)

"The point I made was that Feingold's $100 million exemption amendment was voted dowen by the Repub Senate because the Repubs are seeking tax relief for the super-rich and are not the least concerned about the little guy."

Or, to get back to the point (again), if an inheritance tax is unfair for someone with only a million dollar estate, it's also unfair for someone with one worth 100 times that.

It's not okay to take money from someone just because they're rich. Every dime of that money has been taxed before, and the only justification you've come up with is "those are dirty rich people, and we want their money."

cirbyDon't ... (Below threshold)


Don't put words in my mouth that I didn't say. You can rurn reason on its head if you like to attempt to justify insatiable greed.

Those "rich" people didn't get rich through their own means and only their own means.

You can barf up all the palaver that you want about the upper class and their right to their money, but it took a lot more than their sole effort for them to accumulate their wealth.

FIRST: for the wealthy to accumulate riches, a stable and well-run nation and economic system are required. No Walton, Gates or other could have accumulated their wealth on an island w/ themselves as the sole population. Nor could that be done in any nation in a state of chaos.

SECOND: that wealth accumulation would not be possible without laborers or consumers for the product or service. And that wealth is not possible without productivity.

The price for a stable and ordered society necessary for an environment conducive to wealth accumulation is TAX.

Just as one would not expect to purchase a Ferrari for a Hyundai price nor expect the Presidential suite at The Plaza for a standard double rate, one ought not expect great wealth accumulation without paying the cost for an ordered & secure society wherein that pursuit can be realized.

The greedy just never seem to allow for a cost to their pursuit of wealth.

"Don't put words in my mout... (Below threshold)

"Don't put words in my mouth that I didn't say."

Why not? that's all you seem to do, other than regurgitate bad Socialist philosophy.

Socialism and Communism, by the way, have been proven not to work.

The "cost" you refer to, along with the pay for the "laborers" (why not just call the "the proletariat" while you'reat it?), has been included in this thing called "wages." Which they were paid when they did thing thing called "work."

CirbyBack i... (Below threshold)


Back in the '60's I was an extreme rightist Goldwaterite Republican, so I am well aware of how the crypto-fascist mind views the world. And yes, I include myself in that description back in those days. I just did not realize back then that the sum of the way I thought was essentially a diluted form of a fascist mentality that I was sure that I otherwise abhored.

What you idealize is the system of Capitalism that emerged w/ the Renaissance. That began w/ the notion of individual entrepreneurship as opposed to the feudal economic system of bonded serfdom.

What you are glossing over today is what has become, in numerous situations, predatory capitalism.

To people like you, anyone who criticizes the function of capitalism in today's world is a socialist, and in most instances, the equivalent of a communist. This method of thought results from propaganda perpetrated to inculcate a knee-jerk opposition to any economic concept embodying a notion of fairness or fair compensation for one's contribution to society.

What you attempt to rationalize is unbridled greed independent of any social constraint. It is a crude economic position w/ a Darwinian view of "survival of the fittest."

This sort of notion flies contemptiously in the face of the whole Christian ethic that people like you like to claim as our social & religious bedrock.

The result; HYPOCRISY of the right.

Problem is, Cirby, you can't have it both ways.

mak44What is it th... (Below threshold)


What is it that your jealousy is keeping your two brain cells from understanding?

Either property belongs to the owner or it belongs to the government.

And a death tax is an indication of a philosophy that that "property rights" is a convenient illusion for the "little people".

In the accumulation of wealth, one pays taxes over and over again. The death tax is the cruelest because it states that the owner only gets to pass on HIS/HER "own" (really leased) property at the pleasure/whim of the government.

Death Tax Proponent: Why, yes, Mrs. Jones, we will let you pass down the family photo album to your kids, but that collection of art you've taken your whole life to accumulate? Sell the fuckers cause their money belongs to us and kiss our ass we let you leave ANYTHING to your children.

From communists to anarchists is this hatred of property...usually by people who are pathologically jealous of more talented peers who earn more than them.

At least a robber is more honest that YOU, Mak44... a robber doesn't demand the moral sanction of the person he is robbing.

"Back in the '60's I was an... (Below threshold)

"Back in the '60's I was an extreme rightist Goldwaterite Republican, so I am well aware of how the crypto-fascist mind views the world."

So what?

All that means is that your filters on how you view everyone else's motivations come from a warped and wrong point of view, just reversed 180 degrees since then.

DarleenYou ... (Below threshold)


You burped: "And a death tax is an indication..."

Yep, your relabeling the Inheritance Tax as you do is an indication that you are a Pavlovian Puppy salivating the propaganda phrase "Death Tax" that was created by that Republican polling bastard, Frank Luntz, whose mastery is repackaging language so as to get the dogs drooling at the proper moment.

Sorry Darlene, but you have been brainwashed w/ too rich a diet of Luntz and his propaganda proteges, Limbarf and insanity.

A "1984" relabeling of terms & your acceptance of that relabeling simply reveals that you have a very weak mind.

Furthermore, you are so clearly accustomed to labeling as communist or socialist anything that conflicts with greed that you actually reveal that you have no comprehension of the meaning of these words.

Polly, want a cracker???????

cirbyActual... (Below threshold)


Actually, it's insight as to why people like you think the way you do. Been there, already done it.

Hmm... I'm tempted to offer... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Hmm... I'm tempted to offer a prize to the first person who can find a comment by mak44 that did NOT resort to juveline name-calling, gratuitous insults, gross generalizations, unsubstantiated allegations, and tendencies to use invective and passion to substitute for actual reason and argument, but I suspect I'd be slammed for asking for the impossible.

mak, are you naturally such an asshole, or have you had special training?


Jay,What really dist... (Below threshold)

What really disturbs me is the notion, that if mak is telling the truth, is 40+ years old. And if you rule out a 10 year old who was an active Goldwater republican, older still...

JayIn spite... (Below threshold)


In spite of your allegation, I have offered numerous ideas apart from invective. When I do, the response is typically unfounded rightie investive and attack of the slime monsters.

BUT: I defy you to show me where more than a handful of posters on here have ever tried reason without sliming as a counterpoise.

I'll name one: wav_man aka Joel who hasn't appeared here in awhile. But there aren't others. Just look at the way diplomatic "Lee" gets slimed most of the time.

It's amazing how you can overlook "socialist," "communist," "pinko," "Moonbat," " leftie," "jealous" etc to name a few epithets hurled by your unthinking audience.

When it's dished out, I respond. If a post is just silly and mindless, as many are, I respond w/ sarcasm.

A lot of my posts rely upon tongue-in-cheek.

When you're dealing w/ such Intellectual Giants as Virgo's, cubanboobs, Rob LA, . a snitty Darlene and LarryCurlyMoe to name a few, a rational discussion is often impossible.

I would think that you would look at the tenor of some of your like-minded posters and be appalled at the displayed ignorance and puerile comments that they make.

You seem to have a problem w/ some of your folks being hoisted on their own petard of ignorance.

Jay-what you seemingly appreciate is an audience that salivates on cue w/ the posted bells.

Exactly, Jay. Mak couldn't... (Below threshold)

Exactly, Jay. Mak couldn't address any of the factual matters contra the tax. Instead, he just ignored it, or mis-stated an aspect of the family business concerns.

If he actually knew how the tax worked, had filled out an estate tax return, learned what the law actually says, or worked with countless individuals who waste/spend millions of dollars on CPA's, lawyers, brokers, appraisers, insurance, then we might have a meangingful conversation.

But you don't get anything but vague, unsusbtantiated policy arguments that stupily gloss right over the detail of what the tax truly does.

You can live in your vague, infantile world, but don't expect the rest of us to follow you, let alone respect you.

Mak, mak, mak I d... (Below threshold)

Mak, mak, mak
I defy you to show me where more than a handful of posters on here have ever tried reason without sliming as a counterpoise.
Is that before or after you toss out insults or pavlovian puppies? Aside from being great Reynolds' bait, what is with you an puppies?

So, to take you bait and only use this thread as an example
You begin with typical hostility towards the author. Then you call the President a Chimp.
Refer to those who support repealing the inheritance tax pigs and liken them to feudal lords (which is an analogy you seem to really, really like).
You toss out numbers, but do nothing to back them up.
In short, your first comment and short follow up are angry and full of spite.
When the next commenter responds without being 100% nice, but still more pleasant than your comment, you just launch into personal attacks and name calling. And don't address his one point of fact, that the death tax is just another tax on money that has already been taxed.

This same trend, I will bet, will be evidenced in 90%+ of any thread you've participated in over the last month. That is, you insult and get offensive, then complain that people insult you in return.
Heck, I'll even put my money where my keyboard is. Prove, with actual links, that you are the put upon martyr more than 10% of the time, and I'll give you a $20 giftcard, or make a charitible donation on you behalf of the same amount.

SCSIwuzzy F... (Below threshold)


For starters=your use of "death tax' is just repitition of a propaganda point discovered by Frank Luntz in his focal group studies for Republicans. It is an example of casting something in a negative context designed to create an emotional knee-jerk appeal & mislead an individual into thinking that there will be some sort of a tax on his death. It is a pejorative term to elicit a desired response.

Your concern about the Middle Class taxed-to-death citizen is missplaced.

The fact is that 10% of this population own 70% of the wealth. If this fact seems unsupported to you then just google search & you will find plenty of documentation for that fact. I am not a walking archive who can spew out reference after reference from the top of my head. If you don't believe this fact, then prove it wrong. You won't be able to do so. No other Western Democracy has this magnitude of economic maldistribution.

The result from the above fact alone leaves a 30% cut of the ownership pie to be divvied betweeen 267 million Americans which means through simple deduction that the vast majority of Amnericans will not have to deal w/ an estate tax.

Should you doubt this, there is always the ever-present tv commercial for retirees to avail themselves of the negative mortgage to replace the non-existent pension or the pension revoked because the courts have allowed corporations to escape the obligation. And todayt the majority of jobs offer no pension altho there is access to a 401K in many instances, if a family has any excess funds for investment. And on days like today & yesterday they are taken to the cleaners while the Big Boys short the market, play option, jigger w/ hedge funds and play the currency markets. So as a result, when the average Joe dies, his heirs won't have to worry about unpaid taxes on a multimiollion dollar home that is no longer a family asset.

There is an increasing liklihood that retirees will have to work longer years and spend their final years on a lower standard than promised.

This is just the tip of the issue. It was your Teddy Roosevelt who conceived of this tax as a stop=gap to minimixe the emergence of Europe-like landed or aritocratic class system.

Now, all the average income Repubs are out there carrying water for the Walrons and their like, operating under the illusion that they too might just be encumbered by such tax obligations.

Where's your Point????

So, you've chosen to addres... (Below threshold)

So, you've chosen to address none of my actual points, and instead assign motives and thoughts to me based on... nothing.
Mak, I may tease on occasion, but I do not get insluting in a mean or vengeful manner BUT
You're an ass and a coward. And you've proved my point.

When is the Estate Tax trig... (Below threshold)

When is the Estate Tax triggered? Upon the DEATH of the estate OWNER.

It is not improper to label a tax that is ONLY assessed upon DEATH as a DEATH tax.

So, makey makey 44 insults a second, you know what you can do with your "focus group" bad-faith labeling.

You have deemed private property owners as "evil".

May I suggest you swim to Cuba and enjoy the property is theft paradise.

SCSIwuzzy W... (Below threshold)


When I offered some points above you resoond, "So, you've chosen to address none of my actual points, and instead assign motives and thoughts to me based on... nothing."

If that poat above failed to address some of your "actual points" or was an assessment of your motives, then I would coclude that any exchange with you will be deemed as an "attack," or the use of "insults" or an attack on your motives.

Lest your insult-wary eye mislead your interpretation regarding what I said about Luntz, I was mot accusing you of such a tactic, but rather commenting on the way it works w/ people who are regular followers here and across the conservative spectrum. The evidence is reflected by the autonomic repitition of "Death Tax."

The problem with people like you on Wizbang is just as you illustrate above: anything apart from agreement w/ the choir is scurilous.

BTW Dittos to Darleen for the post just above, Having failed to agree w/ her, I am now a Castro-Cuba hugger, and a socialist, if not commie, by implication.

Are you watching this, Jay?

Mak: to further illustrate... (Below threshold)

Mak: to further illustrate your ignorance, you might try to find out what it is the Senate is actually voiting to do.

The death tax repeal that is proposed would be coupled with a capital gains tax with no stepped up basis at death. Therefore, all assets of a decedent that were later sold would be taxed on the gain as if the decedent still had his original basis in the property.

The realistic forecast is that the new cap gains tax would actually yield MORE funds to your beloved public trough than the current death tax.

It always amazes me how much the leftists like you, Mak, love to speak of what they know not. Do us all a favor, and read a little economics and tax law before you hold forth on your love of taxes for social engineering.

Maybe, Mak, if you could make some money, you would find yourself wishing to preserve it for your family, like the rest of us.

Mitchell Yo... (Below threshold)


You posted: "The realistic forecast is that the new cap gains tax would actually yield MORE funds to your beloved public trough than the current death tax."

The current $9 trillion dollar National debt proves your Laugher Curve econ is no more thatn Medieval alchemy.

A definition of insanity is reptively doing the same thing over and over , looking for a different outcome. After 25 years of Reagan/Bush/Bush Laugher alchemy, insanity has become well-established.

Mak, fine post. But wholly... (Below threshold)

Mak, fine post. But wholly irrelevant.

What a waste of time you are. Is this your only social outlet?

Mitchell Cl... (Below threshold)


Clearly, whenever someone posts a point that doesn't square w/ myopic vision, it is "fine post. But wholly irrelevant."

You are a 21st Century Flat-Erather. Amazing that you ever left the cave & stopped dragging your woman around by the hair.

Mak,I address your b... (Below threshold)

I address your behaivor, and you tell me about my concern for the middle class. About which I have said nothing, either way.
Rather than prove that you are unfairly put upon, you instead go on another rant about the term death tax and T. Rooseveldt.
Every response you have to any other poster here is laden with insults.
And you then complain to Jay, like running to mommy, that not everyon is nice to you?
If you are indeed in your middle age, how do you survive in the real world? How did you get out of school, for that matter?

If you were as young as you act, I'd suspect you of being the next Columbine in the making... ;)

scsiwuzzyI ... (Below threshold)


I honestly thought your most recent post re: addressing an argument was a challenge to address the point of the thread and so I posted what I did above.

Now it appears that what you wanted was my defense to the accusations made about the nature of my posts. Sorry, not going to do that, apart from referring you to my original post on the "Fort Lewis Officer" thread by Kim.

It was a response to a prior general challenge from a Cybrludite. If you bother to follow the thread, you will see that I was far from the initiator of all that you accuse above until the tenor of the responses took the course that they did, which was near-instantaneously.

Anything I posted was simply dismissed as "irrelevant" or unfounded, primarily because it was out of sync w/ group-think.

Since honest give and take on this site is rare and degenerates to epithets from posters like Rube in LA, LarryCurlyMoeron, Veirdgo & others, I rely on satire & irony which then leads people like you yocharge "insult."

Virtually everything that doesn't square w/ right-wing reality (?) is dismissed as "moonbat," "commie," "socialist," "pinko," or
"crybaby whining."

Virtually no one here is willing to offer counterpoints other than stating "group-think" by fiat.

In addition, any argument is typically dismissed w/ "and Clinton got a hummer" and cries of "Monica Lewinsky" and insults hurled at Carter.

You people are so imbued w/ group-think that an image of Pavlovian Puppies is inescapable to non-members of the choir.

Two of your Grand Masters, Limbarf & Insanity are geniouses at holding opposition at bay, screening it out altogether, or overtalking it & redirecting the thrust from years of practice when it is allowed, but tightly controlled.

Problem is, you conservatives here just can't stand non-member thought. Some of your favs, like Ann Cunter, have raised villification to new unsurpassed dizzying heights.

The fault is in your eye, Brutus.

Mak, you're not out of sync... (Below threshold)

Mak, you're not out of sync with group think, you're out of sync with the facts, of which you have none on point.

Since you can't specifically address the merits of the proposed law or the law it would replace, referencing how the law works in practice, and the disincentives inherent in the code, and how the new law would actually work, you're left in a quandry.

If you say nothing, you've lost. But, in this case, when you say something, but that something is unresponsive and so general as to be more of an epithet than analysis, you've lost.

Either way, it must really be irritating to put your ego out on a limb and have it swatted away so often.

Do you work for the DMV, the Health Dept of local government, a university or school? I can't imagine you actually have worked in private enterprise. We expect people to know what they're talking about out here.

Hooray for the Death Tax! -... (Below threshold)

Hooray for the Death Tax! - by Larry Kudlow
Okay, so the estate tax cut went down in the Senate; class warriors rejoiced.

Congratulations to Democratic Senators, Evan Bayh, Mary Landrieu, Ron Wyden, and Mark Pryor, who all voted against death tax repeal, after voting in favor of it a few years ago. At last! They have finally have come to their senses!

Congratulations are also in order for Republican Frank Keating. After crusading for abolition of the death tax when he was governor of Oklahoma, he is now getting right-sized in firm opposition as K Street's newest insurance lobby hero.

I think all of this is great. America should attack rich people. We must abolish wealth. It's a tremendous drag on our economy. It's high time that we made the rich, poor.

In fact, for all the xenophobes that want to depart the illegal immigrants who are helping our economy, may I respectfully suggest that their generals (i.e. Lou Dobbs, Pat Buchanan, and Tom Tancredo and company) consider expanding their dragnet? Let's deport rich people too!

These rich people are bad for America.

We don't want their ingenuity, or their entrepreneurship, or their capital investment. They are not crucial to creating new high growth companies and jobs. We just don't want them. Actually, I think we should figure out ways in the name of egalitarian socialism, to tax their dollars even more times. It definitely is right that they're not taxed enough.

So, in addition to taxing rich incomes, once as salaries, a second time as corporate profits, a third time as dividends, a fourth time as capital gains, and a fifth time at death, there must be a way to tax them again.

Perhaps, if they donate huge contributions to charities there should be a tax?

Or if they build a new church or synagogue, tax 'em. Or if they create another college, tax em. Or if they finance private scholarships, or inner city kids' education at parochial schools, or Hebrew schools, tax 'em. Or if they just go about their business and consume goods and services, can't we have a special tax surcharge? Or if they buy a new home that employs ten, twenty, or fifty construction workers, I say slap a high rich person's tax. Or if they hire a driver, tax 'em. If they show up at a five-star restaurant, tax 'em.

In fact, lets criminalize the entire class of successful American entrepreneurs. Let's haul out the Joint Tax Committee and Congressional Budget Office's distributional tables, and target the upper-end income earners for special wealth taxes.

I like the idea from my crazy Wall Street Journal editorial friends, who talk about "dying for dollars." Maybe we can even impose jail sentences for rich people! No more interest income just like the radical fundamentalist Muslims!

Let's publish their names in newspaper and blog sites. Let's encourage the class warfare, "soak the rich" advocates to swarm over them when they appear on streets and towns, just like the animal rights people, who throw paint on women in mink coats.

We must strive to make America like France or Germany--income leveling; income redistribution. Remember how well this worked with the old Soviet Union?

Actually, I checked the international tax tables and found that the U.S. only has the third highest estate tax rate of the top 50 countries. We should be ashamed of ourselves. Only third? We tax estates at a 46 marginal rate, but Japan is the best at 70 percent, followed by South Korea at 50 percent. We are pikers. We must not let this happen. How can we let Japan be ahead of us on taxing rich people?

The fact that 24 countries have a zero estate tax rate, including China, should not concern us. They don't know what they're doing. And, surely, we don't want to be competitive in the world economy. We want to hang a sign out: "Capitalists are unwelcome to the United States." Let's make the whole country like New York.

This idea of keeping more of what you earn and own is just plain stupid. In fact, this whole capitalistic notion, which is spreading worldwide, is just one of these temporary, bizarre, worldwide trends that will undoubtedly be soon reversed, as people come to their senses.

Czech Republic, Estonia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, they're obviously all nuts with their zero tax rates on estates. Did I say Mexico? That's perfect. As I said earlier, we will deport all our rich people to Mexico. At a zero estate tax rate, they're likely to produce and invest so much more, that they will completely revive the stagnant Mexican economy.

Instead of creating thousands of new businesses and millions of new jobs in America, along with funding schools, colleges, symphonies, cultural centers, hospitals, medical research and so forth, they can do it for Mexico. That of course will solve our immigration problem. What a great idea! Why didn't I think of this earlier?

Meanwhile, Senator Kyl's fallback position of a fifteen percent rate, after exempting the first five million dollars of an estate, is an equally demoralizing idea. That would move us much too close to Canada, Australia and Argentina, which also have a zero rate. That would also promote the foolish incentive idea that there is a link between reward and work, or reward and risk. This crazy, far-out, ultra right wing idea that it must pay after-tax to work and invest is insane.

After all, we know that the best way to generate more saving and investment in this country is to tax it more. That'll do the trick. Contrary to the brilliant Arthur Laffer, the tax the rich crowd must be exactly right with their newfangled, modernistic, 21st century idea that if you tax something more, we will get more of it. Huh?

This may all sound wrong, but these soak the rich guys are deep thinkers. They have their fingers on the pulse of the hundred million strong Investor Class. They know that the worldwide spread of free market economics, which was launched by Reagan and Thatcher, twenty-five years ago, and which has raised global prosperity to record heights, caused the phenomenal growth of middle classes in places like India, China, and Russia, along with record amelioration of poverty, is absolutely nuts.

After all, capital is the enemy of labor! Forget about the obvious fact that you can't create a new job without a business. And you can't fund a new business without capital. Forget all that. It's obviously wrong.

Once again, capital is the enemy. Rich people are evil. We have to put an end to all this capitalist, supply-side nonsense.

By the way, when is Karl Marx' birthday? I have to stop writing now, so I can go look it up. I can't wait to celebrate the master's birthday...

They’re more principled tha... (Below threshold)

They’re more principled than that. Two-thirds of the public wants to repeal it because they think taxing a lifetime of thrift due to the accident of death is unfair, and even immoral.






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