Californians, for example, apparently adore high taxes. By contrast, Texans — and the Californians who have relocated there — do not. So why should residents of high-tax states be able to deduct their state and local taxes from their federal taxes? Texas and other no- or low-tax states are being forced to subsidize the profligate states.
The five highest-taxed states are New York, New Jersey, California, Vermont and Rhode Island — with California soon pulling into the lead. The five least-taxed states are Florida, Alaska, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming.
See the pattern?
You want high taxes, New York and California? Then pay them — with no deductions for state and local taxes on your federal returns.
Billionaire liberal Warren Buffett keeps gassing about how he’s dying to pay a higher tax rate (while employing a phalanx of lawyers to argue that he owes less in taxes than the IRS says he owes). Buffett is taking advantage of an unwarranted tax loophole that allows full-time investors like himself to report their entire income as capital gains, not ordinary income.
But that’s his job! A stock-picker like Buffett is completely different from a doctor, whose job is to save lives, or a lawyer, whose job is to wreck them.
They pay the full income tax rate for what they earn doing their jobs, and then pay a lower capital gains rate on investing the money they get to keep.
Buffett’s only job is to earn capital gains. He and others like him should be paying the ordinary income tax rate like the rest of us on the money he earns from his job. Close that loophole. Almost no Republicans will be harmed in the making of this tax change. (There’s a reason Sen. Chuck Schumer fought so hard to save it.)
Finally, as Glenn Reynolds — the law professor known as “Instapundit” — has been arguing, it’s time to end Hollywood’s exemption from excise taxes.
Excise taxes are taxes imposed on goods and activities, passed on to the consumer, such as alcohol and tobacco taxes. There are excise taxes on gasoline, airlines, tanning salons, fishing and archery products, truck driving, long-distance telephone service, and on and on.
Hollywood movies used to be subject to an excise tax, but, for no reason whatsoever, rich Hollywood liberals have been relieved of excise taxes on their products since the 1950s.
Reynolds suggests that, for “extra fun,” Republicans “could show pictures of David Geffen’s yacht and John Travolta’s personal Boeing 707 on the Senate floor.”
Republicans can’t block the Democrats from raising taxes on “the rich” without themselves being responsible for raising taxes on the middle class. But they can at least force liberal fat cats to start paying their fair share.
Ann Coulter is a political commentator and author.