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15 January 2018



One article:


That is so smart. I wonder how tax cases wind their way through the courts, is it done via a court system within the IRS?

I'm still wondering why we can't simply crank up the marginal rates on CA income tax to 50% or so, and then give everyone in the state free health care. Any job that matters in state government is purest Green Libertarian as is the legislature.

It's almost like Green Libertarian philosophy is fake somehow. Say it ain't so, Joe.


Posted by: Scenes | 15 January 2018 at 06:42 AM

Yeah ......all the consternation puzzles me......after all “taxes are the price we pay for civilization” or so i have been assured!

Are progressives reversing themselves on the issue?


re: 7:05AM

"Are progressives reversing themselves on the issue?"

As a practical matter, I don't think that the Green Libertarian elite really is interested in the policies they propose. For one thing, something like healthcare is so complex that you are likely to fail no matter what your intentions where.

It looks to me like the main value of the growth of government is to provide a spoils system. The Soviet Union was a pure play here, but you can see it in most countries worldwide. The government (usually the central .gov) accumulates as much as it can, and then it is passed back to favored groups and individuals. Your son-in-law gets that good job at the state-run TV station or school, particular groups get better security or infusions of money.

In the final analysis, maybe that's all this is about. One philosophy that uses a hidden hand to apportion resources via a marketplace, the other hands it out to it's friends. Sadly, you can end up with a high Gini coefficient in both cases.

George Rebane

Scenes 731am - And the distribution wealth/income/etc viz the Gini coefficient should be an indicator to progressives, should they reason, that socialism is no guarantee of more equal (and most certainly not equitable) distributions as has been pointed out here for years. Yet the UN continues to dun only countries more open to markets for their politically incorrect Ginis.


What's the Matter with California?


Guess which state has the highest poverty rate in the country? Not Mississippi, New Mexico, or West Virginia, but California, where nearly one out of five residents is poor. That’s according to the Census Bureau’s Supplemental Poverty Measure, which factors in the cost of housing, food, utilities and clothing, and which includes noncash government assistance as a form of income.
Given robust job growth and the prosperity generated by several industries, it’s worth asking why California has fallen behind, especially when the state’s per-capita GDP increased approximately twice as much as the U.S. average over the five years ending in 2016 (12.5%, compared with 6.27%).

The Left's first, last and only instinct is to throw more money at the problem, but California's already done that. and guess what?

It’s not as though California policymakers have neglected to wage war on poverty. Sacramento and local governments have spent massive amounts in the cause. Several state and municipal benefit programs overlap with one another; in some cases, individuals with incomes 200% above the poverty line receive benefits. California state and local governments spent nearly $958 billion from 1992 through 2015 on public welfare programs, including cash-assistance payments, vendor payments and “other public welfare,” according to the Census Bureau. California, with 12% of the American population, is home today to about one in three of the nation’s welfare recipients.

The generous spending, then, has not only failed to decrease poverty; it actually seems to have made it worse.

More here:



A donation to a state charity (like any other charity) would not directly benefit the giver. The idea of a flat tax is to eliminate deductions. A flat tax would be a good thing. But if Congress (Republicans) is going to eliminate the state income tax deduction then they should have eliminated the AMT which was devised to make sure the rich paid plenty of taxes even after their deductions. On my 2016 tax return it looks like the amount of 37% tax I would have paid on my deducted state tax portion was close to the amount I paid in AMT. The difference between 39.6% and 37% tax rates does not make up for the amount of AMT and loss of state tax deduction. Corporations win, people pay more.


A person would not have to donate to the state charity to get the same deduction so this idea could lead to more charitable giving. Donate to charities within the state and keep the money local instead of sending it to the federal government.

George Rebane

ArchieB 1035am - Au contraire Mr Bunker, the benefit of such a charity scam would be direct and countable in the wallets of its practitioners. Apparently my above example is not clear enough for you to understand. Perhaps you could gain comfort in recalling that the mavens in all high-tax states are considering such stratagems. To deny direct benefit to the 'giver' would discredit all these conspiring collectivists. If you are still unconvinced, then maybe letters to these intending governors would be a next step.

What you seem to miss in your 1100am is that the state wants your 'charitable contribution' to go into its general fund. That's the whole point of the scam.

And your AMT concerns under the new tax law are addressed here -


Did Jerry and the kids brew this up after taking a close look at the Clinton Foundation?


GeorgeR 1103am - Here is something you might have missed,

"The IRS has long required taxpayers to subtract the value of anything they receive in return for a charitable contribution before taking a deduction, so someone who gets a $5 tote bag for a $50 donation to a public TV station, for example, can only deduct $45.

But the IRS has also said that the value of the deduction itself in terms of federal tax avoided does not have to be subtracted, said Kirk J. Stark, a tax law professor at the University of California-Los Angeles School of Law.

Stark said the IRS could change its ruling to address what California and New Jersey are looking to do, but that could also impact the voucher programs and more widespread programs that provide real estate developers incentives to preserve land on which they could otherwise build.

"Tax credits for donations of conservation easements have become a popular thing to do," Stark said. "Before he became president, Donald Trump made several donations of conservation easements over the years.""



The point of my 11am was to point out that you can get the same tax deduction if you give it to any charity. You don't have to give it to the state charity.


Regarding the AMT, for high income (over $1 million) filers the AMT would be reduced. It will be interesting to see if the amount saved in the new AMT calculations will substantially offset the loss of the state tax deduction making the state charity scam a mute point.

George Rebane

ArchieB 1119am et seq - yes of course, but where we're talking past each other is that you're still addressing the obvious, well-known, and legitimate charitable giving question where that is the furthest from the minds of the states seeking to continue their stream of revenues.

Just for reference, the additional ("subsidy") amount of federal taxes paid on adjusted gross income of A is rS*rF*A, where rS and rF are the effective state and federal tax rates respectively. If there is reader interest, I'll present the derivation of this and other related factors in a future post.


I still must be missing something. Why would de Leon bother to offer up a "state charity" as a solution since it is obvious that a donation to any charity will do? Can you imagine how it would look if you searched for California State Charity in Guidestar or Charity Navigator and looked at the program expense ratio? "Management" expenses would account for 95 cents of every dollar you donated.


re: GeorgeR@8:36AM

"And the distribution wealth/income/etc viz the Gini coefficient should be an indicator to progressives, should they reason, that socialism is no guarantee of more equal (and most certainly not equitable) distributions as has been pointed out here for years. "

I think sometimes that it's an honest mistake by Western socialists and quasi-socialists. They really have no idea how unequal income and wealth were in places like the Soviet Union. There's a general notion that the Russians and friends were all equally poor (perhaps because it wasn't "real communism") but there's a kind of blank space in peoples' heads about the reality on the ground. In cases where the whole works is run by a single giant corporation (with subsidiaries of course), it's practically impossible to not end up with an elite.



"A person would not have to donate to the state charity to get the same deduction so this idea could lead to more charitable giving. Donate to charities within the state and keep the money local instead of sending it to the federal government."

That's not how I'm reading it. The difference between a charity and a "state charity" is that the second would have a 1:1 offset in terms of state taxes...that is to say you wouldn't pay your state income tax at all, you'd pay into this 'charity'...it's just that charities are tax deductible at a federal level (as state tax payments are currently).

It's a super clever idea, but I doubt that it sticks. The feds (probably an IRS regulation, not a law) will just more finely refine a charity definition if need be.


more AB@whenever

"I still must be missing something. Why would de Leon bother to offer up a "state charity" as a solution since it is obvious that a donation to any charity will do? "

read my post at 1:22PM.

Frankly, I don't know what the fuss is. Rich people in rich states pay more taxes, poor people in poor states aren't affected.

I thought that tax systems that go after the rich are good things?

George Rebane

ArchieB 1238pm - Yes Mr Bunker, any charity would do for the giver. But that charitable gift would not go into the state's coffers. For it to be a win-win scheme, the new (hoaky) charity's gifts would have to accrue to the state's treasury. Both parties should see no change in their fortunes, and that is the type of charitable giving the high-tax states are trying to set up.


What the state needs to do is simply designate itself as a charity. Your taxes are then a charitable deduction. Easy.


Sure thing Archie,, " charity" with no choice in the matter.
Care for the Red Cross to say how much your going to "give" and by when?


It already is basically a charity. So why not get a charitable deduction?


Choose not to give, and see what happens. Since your into the spirit of giving,, you can cover mine.


I think you are barking up the wrong tree. The Fed is not letting people deduct their state income tax payment any longer. So the state is trying to come up with a way to make your tax payment a charitable deduction. I did not understand it at first but I say why not? I am no fan of the Fed and don't want my taxes to go up. Do you?



Account Deleted

ArchieBunker is missing something here. You can donate to any charity you want and that will reduce your Fed taxes if you itemize. It will not eliminate your CA state income taxes. You end up having to pay CA state income taxes no matter what. Either the way you normally do or by 'donating' the same exact amount to this new scam called a 'charity'. It's not voluntary, and it's not a charity by normal IRS rules. However, don't count out the IRS changing their rules. They are a law unto themselves and if you don't like it, they'll tell you to go pound sand.

Account Deleted

Archie - "The Fed is not letting people deduct their state income tax payment any longer"
Not true - you will still be able to deduct up to 10,000 smackers.

Account Deleted

"I am no fan of the Fed and don't want my taxes to go up. Do you?"
Do you know for a fact that your over-all state, local and fed tax amount will be going up due to the new fed tax law? Not saying it will or won't but I've talked to people who are afraid it will and then I find out they don't even itemize their taxes.
The news media and the Dems are having a field day screeching that the poor and middle class will have to pay more.


Yes, as I said in my 522pm I did not understand at first what de Leon was proposing. Now I think why not?


If you don't want to try the charity route you can just pay your taxes in the "usual" way. I think the "usual" way should be the "charity donation" way. For me it is just a way to mess with the Fed.


And the FED with "mess with you" right back.
Do what you like. It's you paying the lawyer.

Account Deleted

"For me it is just a way to mess with the Fed."
And if the IRS continues their rules per usual, it isn't going to work. It certainly is not a charity, it's a scam.
I don't like high taxes either - that's why I moved to Idaho. You stay in CA and you will end up paying increasingly higher taxes, fees, cost of living, etc.

Don Bessee

SO screw all the soccer moms and football families, socialist bastards-




Here's a copy of the tax bill.


I was just spending a few minutes looking at all the online pontificating (on various news sites) about it and I just had to laugh at how little people know about the stuff they preach on. Mind you, this isn't a mushy problem in sociology but is a set of numbers and fairly simple rules.

jon smith

Donations to California's Department of Fish and Wildlife have been tax deductible as charitable contributions for as long as I can remember.


Yes jon,, but those ain't TAXES. You CHOSE to "donate".

Bill Tozer

CA Department Of Fish and Game, as well as the DMV, are funded by revenues generated solely by fees charged for licenses, etc, not from the general fund. It is unlikely that the states’ plan for her residents to voluntarily “donate” to a non-profit charity or issue advocacy group by writing a check that is directly deposited into the states’ General Fund will more than likely NOT fly within the IRS’s guidelines and rulebook. Lawyer stuff. Maybe there are loopholes. Heard enough bitching through the years about the darn filthy rich hiring lawyers to find loopholes us little people can’t afford to find, not to mention argue successfully in court.
CA receives billions in revenue and has hundreds upon hundreds of lawyers on payroll. The evil rich are at it again! :)

Meanwhile, might as well ask the opinion of any local jailhouse lawyer...er...inmate. They don’t call them ‘cons’ because they are convicts. Nay, they are called cons because they are conmen. This state workaround sounds like a con to me. Time will tell.

Bill Tozer

Why is the taxes in CA so damn high? Complete with graphs at the bottom.


George Rebane

BillT 259pm - That's because most of CA voters are pinhead progressives. Now what's your next question Mr Tozer, and please make it a bit more challenging.

Bill Tozer

Another softball. Gotta wait for a tough question.

Why don’t Californians get more bang for their buck?

Bob Hobert

It’s a Brave New World!

California Regulators Just Decided To Kill The Last Nuclear Power Plant In The State
By Tim Pearce
January 13, 2018 at 10:43am

California regulators voted unanimously Thursday to shutter the state’s last nuclear power plant by 2025.

The Diablo Canyon nuclear facility is scheduled for an incremental shutdown, phasing out Unit One in 2024 and Unit Two in 2025.


Bob Hobert

Ok, I tossed the previous comment because it's called Scattershots. Here's another - take this bike ride through a California shantytown. Q - will there be more or fewer of these in California's future?

Bicyclist Films 10 Straight Minutes of Shantytowns in Santa Ana
If there’s any one state in this august union that could be properly termed socialist, California would certainly be in the running.

After all, the Golden State is where taxes are high, the so-called “safety net” is wide, economic growth is low and anyone who disagrees with leftist orthodoxy is chased off of state-run college campuses.

Well, if you want to call California socialist, all we can say is this: We’ve seen the future, and it doesn’t work.

If you don’t believe me, take a look at this video showing the homelessness in Orange County, California. It’s a 10-minute bike ride through one of the largest shantytowns in America:


Account Deleted

Had an interesting conversation with a fireman from L.A. He and his wife are going to buy a home near Boise and he will commute to work twice a month. He says the savings in his electric bill alone will pay the difference. (he's not kidding) He'll bail out of their home in SoCal and pay cash for a bigger home here in Idaho. Money, he claims, is not the big reason. Being a fireman, he sees much more of what's wrong in society than most people and what he sees in SoCal makes them want to raise their kids some where else. Not to mention he likes the freedom here. He's not alone by far. He personally knows 2 others that commute in the same way. One to an area south of Reno and the other lives just a couple of miles from where I live. I read a article 20 years ago about LA firemen commuting to St George, Utah in their own aircraft. Keep it up, California, keep it up.
When is that free health care for anyone in the world coming to the golden state?


BillT: "Why don’t Californians get more bang for their buck?"

The problem isn't so much bang as it is bucks. California government needs more money for good deeds.

See here, if you just went for my new tax plan, what I'll call the Cal-50 Plan, everything will be fine. The idea is that the state income tax rate gets bumped to a flat 50% for everyone*.

We can buy homes for all the homeless, give out free healthcare, and probably build another bullet train. No Trump needed, simply get the state legislature working on this bill.

Everything would probably be fine then. The state can ignore Orange Hitler's tax plan, and the utopia produced would allow us to invite in millions of New Americans (what used to be called illegal aliens). The additional population will put us over the top.

*State employees excluded.


OK Bill and Scenes you gents are top sarcasmists hands down. Don't ever let up. Someone needs to publish some of your uh,, thoughts.
I take my hat off to you both.

Account Deleted

"...a flat 50% for everyone." Is that after deducting the money sent south of the border? Will they collect the tax in the parking lot of Home Depot?


Scott@05:30 PM When I was in Idaho this summer I heard about a fireman commuting to Reno from Idaho. It was hard to believe at the time, but it is becoming more of a regular routine.


re: ScottO:

" '...a flat 50% for everyone.' Is that after deducting the money sent south of the border? Will they collect the tax in the parking lot of Home Depot?"

One of the statutes in Cal-50 will be that New Americans are immune from the 50% tax. However, they will receive a CASSN (California social security number) in order to receive money from the state-run New American Pension Program (NAPP).

Also, in order to do the jobs that Californians won't do, it may make sense to give free auto insurance to all New Americans.

With crazy articles like this being written:


we can't allow Drumpf to stand in the way of our goal of bringing in the talents of all people worldwide.

Account Deleted

Well - I certainly identify as a New American! I'm new every day! Born again, you might say. Where are my my rights and my moolah?
In the wake of MLK's birthday celebration you can't possibly deny me my rights!
To your moolah. I might add.

Account Deleted

Well - you have to give some credit to NR for hosting that screed. Trump was the protestant rube that lowered the critical bar for the NR crowd. They detested him even as he elevated their beliefs in a way they had no balls to do so for themselves.
I often wonder what Brother Bill would have said about Trump had he been here to see (and hear) for himself.

Account Deleted

Firing Line 1981: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QaxprQEzpM
A lot of numbers so lefties might not want to watch.

Don Bessee



DOW 26,100 right now! ;-)


Hang on, according to the Washington Post, one of those highly pro-Trump news organs, a complete Mexican wall would cost an impossible $21B.

Apple is handing over $38B?

Problem solved.

Don Bessee
Bill Tozer

How California Democrats have turned the Golden State into a Sh*thole, Part 1


Part 2


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