The Campaign For DA

4.27.2017

Random Thursday Morning Thoughts



  • Trump's tax plan was rolled out by two former Goldman Sach's guys who kept promising us we'll get the details later. That seems to be a recurring theme.
  • The raising of the standard deduction for couples to $24,000 seems like a big deal for the common man. But the housing industry didn't like it. One incentive to buy a home is the mortgage interest deduction. But if your total itemized deductions, even with the mortgage deduction, doesn't crack $24,000, the mortgage interest deduction doesn't matter. You just take the standard deduction instead.
  • Good for the wealthy: Corporate tax rate of 15%, and the elimination of the estate tax.
  • And Another (Texas): 
  • And Another who was found not guilty by a judge yesterday (Lousiana):
  • The Texas House, in their late-into-the-night debate last night on Sanctuary Cities, approved an amendment allowing officers to ask a person legally detained about their immigration status. That law is probably unconstitutional because the Supreme Court has made is specifically clear that all actions during a detention must be limited to the purpose of the detention. Asking about a person's immigration status is unrelated to, say, a detention for a traffic violation. (And DPS has already been accused of violating that leading Supreme Court opinion in the context of handling illegal immigrants during traffic stops.)
  • The feds raided TV preacher Benny Hinn's offices in Grapevine yesterday. Hey, I think most of the TV guys are modern day snake oil salesmen of The Feel Good Gospel (Joel Osteen, Robert Jeffress, Ed Young, etc.), but I get real uncomfortable when I see the government raiding a church. They better have a good reason. 
  • Random Sports Observation: In the ten school Big 12, only seven schools have women's softball programs.  West Virginia, Kansas State, and (amazingly) TCU do not.
  • Trump softens on NAFTA. Let me guess, we'll get the details later.
  • DeMarcus Ware "retired as a Cowboy this week". Hot sports opinion: Charles Haley ᐳ DeMarcus Ware, and it isn't even close. 
  • The Star-Telegram is working blue this morning on its home page. (And this isn't even a local story. It's out of Florida.):

  • The NFL Draft is tonight, and The Ticket said this morning there used to not be a time limit on the teams to make their pick. As proof, they said Dallas once took six hours to evaluate the health of Mel Renfro before taking him. It seems to be true. What a beating. 
  • A Morning News letter to the editor -- Preach on, bruther! cc: Pete Delkus:
  • One of the funniest bits I had seen in a while were two "fake strongmen" who conned their way onto a morning local TV show. They are now being sued.



39 comments:

Anonymous said...

1. Delkus > Barry 1000x.

2. You really opposed to losing a good portion of your inheritance via repeal of estate tax? Be honest.

3. Jeffress may be a douche but he genuinely believes and preaches his interpretation of the gospel. Hinn deserves a firing squad for being a fraud of the highest order. You can't lump them in the same category.

4. At least Ware didn't please himself in a team meeting.

Out Rage

Anonymous said...

I'm disappointed Trump reneged on his promise to eliminate the free trade agreement - one of his campaign promises that was supposed to ensure jobs came back to America and, with the addition of his promised import tax, would make shopping 'local' more valuable to American consumers. Getting rid of NAFTA was one of the biggest reasons I voted for him. Since he reneged, can I?

Anonymous said...

Adults who use Snapchat filters are the equivalent of playing dress up and it always strikes me as a sign of immaturity or mental illness. Just creepy.

Anonymous said...

OK, I'm going to address this Out Rage idiot this one last time:

1. I have no opinion on this. Barry isn't a weather man, though, so I'm not sure why this is an issue. Have you ever met either of them to comment otherwise?

2. Depends on the size of the inheritance. The average inheritance is too small to be taxed at all. Once it gets to a certain point, that's when it maters. Something tells me your kids won't have to worry about a tax.

3. He is a heretic. If you cannot call out heresy when you see it, you are no better of a Christian than he is. To allow that sort of person to represent the teachings of Jesus is to be complicit in his misrepresentation of the Gospel, which is nothing like what he preaches by any means or by any rational interpretation. The fact that you wouldn't call him out even anonymously says a lot about the failing of your faith, your church, and your religious training. It goes beyond just being stupid, it speaks to how absolutely worthless of a human being you are.

4. Your sports opinions are apparently as valuable as your religious ones.

Anonymous said...

I thought you were a Democrat. Go back to school and listen to the experts on taxes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEdXrfIMdiU

Anonymous said...

9:09 - really? You have that much to pass down? I'm doing fairly well, probably better than most, but my net doesn't even come close to the threshold. You know what it is, right? It's $5.5 MILLION per individual. A married couple that managed to save and leave $10.9 million to their children would not pay a single penny (Federal taxes). There's ZERO percent federal estate tax for family estates under $11 million.

The Republican's casting of it as a "death tax" and implying it would hurt ordinary families is a hoax. The tax only applies to those amounts over $11 million (family estate) ... so who's that gonna hit? Somebody in Wise County, Jack County, anywhere stretching up to Amarillo? Doubtful, but possible. A few families in Highland Park? Probably.

Anonymous said...

For 2017, the estate and gift tax exemption is $5.49 million per individual, up from $5.45 million in 2016. That means an individual can leave $5.49 million to heirs and pay no federal estate or gift tax.

https://m.forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeling/2016/10/25/irs-announces-2017-estate-and-gift-tax-limits-the-11-million-tax-break/?c=0&s=TaxTime

Harry Hamid said...

Those federal agents are fortunate that Benny Hinn wasn't home when they raided his offices.

He could have hit them in the forehead and left them flying.

Triple Fake... said...

you probably need to look up the definition of "working blue", unless there's some alternate meaning for that phrase I'm not aware of.

I imagine the good reason the Feds raided Benny Hinn's offices was some evidence that he has misused the money he's raised. It could also involve his claim of healing powers. It won't come as a big surprise when the indictments reveal the many sins of Benny Hinn's!

And speaking of charlatans, and people believing what they say:
Robert Barrese of far North Dallas has a point about TV weather forecasters, but doesn't present a very strong case by saying "we foolishly listen to them."
Maybe he could use the help of a high power attorney to express his displeasure in the form of fancy legal language in a frivolous lawsuit. Or maybe just get the Feds to raid Delkus's office

Anonymous said...

The biggest myth in politics - reducing taxes creates such an economic expansion that additional revenues will make up for it. Start with the huge Reagan tax cut, when he took office the national debt was about 1 trillion, when he left the debt was about 4 trillion. Bush Sr. knew it and couldn't do anything about it. Then Clinton according to FOX news passed the biggest tax increase in history and by 1999 we actually had a balanced budget (including Social Security surplus). Things were going so good the R's couldn't stand it and Bush Jr passed a huge tax cut in 2001 and then even a bigger one in 2003. And if you are honest you all remember where we were by 2008. But we will continue to believe the myth.

Anonymous said...

Outrage is a troll. Don't feed the trolls.

Anonymous said...

"That law is probably unconstitutional because the Supreme Court has made is specifically clear that all actions during a detention must be limited to the purpose of the detention."

I have a question for you on this. Didn't they say you could do other things, like call in the drug dogs, but they better get done by the time the objective of the stop is over? So you can pull them over, and you can search them for drugs, but if the dogs aren't there by the time you have completed your ticket writing, you have to let them go? So you can do extra things, you just better get the answer before you would otherwise have completed the underlying purpose of the stop?

That's a serious question, and I think the distinction is important. A cop can do "extra" things, but cannot continue the detention because of them, is how I understand the recent SCOTUS cases.



On the inheritance tax thing, I think it can be good even for some lower income folks. Imagine a farmer or rancher who just so happens to own his own land, and has worked it all his life, but he doesn't make a killing off of it. Maybe it's just big enough to fall under the inheritance tax. Problem is, he's got a couple thousand acres that are worth more than they have ever been because Texas land values are going up, but he has only a few thousand dollars in the bank, which is nowhere near enough to cover the taxes. So when he dies, his entire estate is worth millions, but there's not enough money in the bank to pay off the inheritance taxes, so his family can't afford to keep the place. They either break it up and sell it, or in the mid-west, sell out to one of the enormous corporate farms.

Are there ways to structure the inheritance so that taxes are minimized or eliminated at death? Absolutely. Do you think your average farmer has Mitt Romney-style estate planning available to him? Nope.

And imagine, once that farmer is in his 70's or 80's, and you try to talk to them about the future of the place and putting it in a trust or some other vehicle to avoid estate taxes, and what do you think the old codger is going to do? Agree? Or go nuts because they think you're trying to take over their place and steal their land from them that they worked all of their life and nobody knows better than them?

Besides, we all know that the wealthy have ways to avoid estate taxes through insurance, trusts, and other exotic estate plans, some of the wealthiest of which involve off-shore trusts and accounts. So if they can avoid them anyway, why not bring that money out into the light and have it possibly available for use here in the US?

The estate tax is double taxation, pure and simple. They tax your land and your income all your life, and then try and take it when you die. It should absolutely go. And my perspective is not from the guy that has his money in trusts, but as someone who inherited some land but was lucky enough to be able to cover the taxes. I see people all around me who aren't so lucky, and sell out to asshole absentee landowners all the time.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Rage, and who decides on the size of the inheritance that gets taxed? Ooops, sorry I asked because now I'm sure you're going to give some incoherent response like Nancy Pelosi.

Anonymous said...

Ok Pencil Dick, I'm going to address you one last time.

1. I have met Delkus numerous times and he has been quite gracious in helping a charity I am involved with. I simply don't know why Barry has such a hatred for local male newscasters.

2. Rage actually nailed it. It is double taxation and it is wrong.

3. I specifically called Jeffress a douche. Not sure how that beats around the bush. You probably are opposed to him because of his biblical interpretation of homosexuality. Please point out specifically his heresy.

4. I liked Haley as a player but he was a loon. Ware was a team player and great guy in the locker room.

Out Rage

Anonymous said...

The Star-Telegram is working blue this morning on its home page. (And this isn't even a local story. It's out of Florida.)

Ok, you obviously don't know what the term working blue means. You can look it up and get back to us.

Anonymous said...

And Another who was found not guilty by a judge yesterday




Read all the articles on this Hot And Another. Don't see how she got a no-guilty. Judge said the act didn't meet the elements of a 3-some??? So what? Did she or did she not have sex with the kid at her house. Yes.

Anonymous said...

Even though he should have been caught in the ESPN layoffs yesterday, I like to watch the Draft to see how many picks Mel Kiper gets wrong from his predictions.

Anonymous said...

I can name off 30 families off the top of my head in Wise County alone that would be well beyond that 11 milly.

Anonymous said...

On the Estate tax/death tax topic: There is logic behind the original law. Society is better served when every generation contributes; society doesn't benefit from the idle rich class. If you want to avoid the caste system where HNW/UHNW families are wealthy in perpetuity, then you have to create incentives for HNW/UHNW families to distribute their wealth to charities, endowments, or risk getting a haircut at every generation. Plus, government used to care about balanced federal budgets, and this tax was a revenue stream to avoid deficit spending (a.k.a. deferred taxes our children will have to pay).

That was the original intent of the inheritance tax. I'm only pointing out there is logic. You can disagree or agree, but you cannot dismiss the logic. Also, you can research the nobility class in Europe in the late 16/17 century if you want to see how wealth in perpetuity is bad for society as a whole.

I will say the law doesn't work any more. I spent 5 years working at a firm where we created legal ways for UHNW families to perform intra-generational wealth transfers and avoid taxes. As such, as always, the wealthy found a way around the system to benefit them.

Anonymous said...

Keep it going Barry. Run it into the ground dork.

Anonymous said...

Not guilty by teenage braggadocios nature. I am now using that argument for all my And Another clients.

DF Racehorse Haynes

Anonymous said...

9:35, it's set by statute, and changes from time to time, genius. Sorry if that's too incoherent for you.

11:38, I'm sorry but that's bullshit. I should get to determine where my money goes. It's my money. I shouldn't get penalized for what I do with my money when I die and wanting to help the next generation of my descendants just because the government "wants them to contribute". If Warren Buffett makes that decision on his own, great. But if I want to leave something to someone, there is no legitimate principle that says I should be required to give it to others that I am not related to or face forfeiture of the money I earned and that has already been taxed.

I'd like to see the basis for your claim. Legislative history, commentary, anything authoritative that says a congressman got up there and said "we want you to give your money to charity, because we think those receiving charity deserve it more than your own children, because I think if you give money to your children they will have no incentive to contribute to society, but if you give that some money to strangers they will somehow have the incentive that your children lack."

Rage

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but at some point it is an individual's responsibility to actually look out the window, listen to the thunder, smell the rain on the wind, know what greenish lightning means, etc. Even if you are only halfway paying attention to the weather, there is almost always PLENTY of time to drive home from the store, pull your car in if you have a garage, or do whatever you need to do. You can, believe it or not, actually see weather approaching. And to the person praised for writing a letter and complaining that he was not told a specific storm might drift a few miles from its projected course, I would ask what he thinks a "severe thunderstorm watch" means. Apparently that's not good enough.

Anonymous said...

I had high hopes that the members of the House would do the right thing. So sad that they didn't.

Anonymous said...

NONE of the Big 12 schools have a men's softball team. Why not? Why is there not men's college softball?

Anonymous said...

Robert B. is a complete fool. The radars and reports followed precisely the approaching storm. The whole area was told by every single meteorologist that severe storms were possible. I live nowhere near north Dallas, but even I knew the storm was shifting that direction. And even if a thousand weather forecasters would have texted him, it still would have hailed.

Anonymous said...

Dear Robert Barresse, a severe thunderstorm watch in your area means watch for severe thunderstorms.

Anonymous said...

taxation is theft

Anonymous said...

Rage, I'm surprised you take that stance on inheritance tax, based on your other comments here. What do you think of corporate tax? It is also double taxation. A dollar of profit is taxed at the corporate level, then when distributed to the owner/s of the corporation, the same dollar, or what is left of it, is taxed as personal income to them. Is that fair?

Anonymous said...

Rage,

You have the right to disagree with the inheritance tax on principle. I'm not trying to convince you otherwise, since I stated the law doesn't work, since currently HNW/UHNW families can avoid paying it. It's the uniformed small business owner that gets squeezed by the tax.

As you know, in order to run a government, then you need to generate tax revenue. Society must agree the most equitable way to tax individuals. This is one way. It's not the only way.

Since you seem passionate about controlling your wealth, then FYI: you can renounce your US citizenship and move overseas and spend less than 120 days in the USA to avoid our taxes.

Anonymous said...

You do understand that a person making minimum wage in this country makes more than 90 of the people on earth, right? What's "wealthy", exactly? To the incredibly vast majority of people, those hypocrites protesting the "1%" ARE ACTUALLY the 1%. Would be cool to see a whole bunch of truly poor people approach one of those protest camps with signs blasting the "wealth" of the people protesting against wealth.

Anonymous said...

3:02, you must be one of the morons on here that keeps calling me a liberal. I am not, and this is just one of many reasons why. In case you are wondering I am also pro-life, a Christian, and have more guns than probably everyone on this blog combined.

Corporations are a separate entity. If they hold separate liability that does not transfer to shareholders, and are separate and apart from their shareholders, then no, taxing corporate income is not double taxation.

Now taxation of partnership income, because of the flow-through nature of that tax structure, is double taxation in my opinion. And believe it or not, if done properly (you cannot use a company bank account to store money that would otherwise be income to an individual), that income is not taxed at the federal level except once it hits the bank account of a partner.

You know who does tax partnership income? Texas, because the Republican legislature enacted, and Republican Rick Perry signed, a law allowing for a state franchise tax on partnership income at the partnership level. And for some reason the large law firms have agreed to hold their nose and not test the law, probably because there would be some other way to tax it that might be worse.

Anyway, if I think it's an improper double tax, but your Republican Party officials tax it anyway, which one of us is the liberal again?

Rage

Anonymous said...

"As you know, in order to run a government, then you need to generate tax revenue. Society must agree the most equitable way to tax individuals. This is one way. It's not the only way."

No. You said that the inheritance tax was created for a specific purpose, and that purpose was at least in part because the country would be full of spend thrifts if we didn't take their inheritance away from them and give it to poor people who we have decided need it more. You did not say that all taxes are a function of society in general. I'm all for paying my fair share. But not for paying more than that.

"Since you seem passionate about controlling your wealth, then FYI: you can renounce your US citizenship and move overseas and spend less than 120 days in the USA to avoid our taxes."

I can control it just fine, thanks. I'm not sure why you'r not passionate about controlling yours.

If you wouldn't mind letting us know what firm you're with, so we know who to avoid in the future, I'm sure we'd all appreciate it.

Rage

Anonymous said...

Rageepoo doesn't want his estate taxed because he doesn't trust the government with his money! I thought he just got finished lecturing low income voters on how they should have complete trust in the government!!!

Anonymous said...


9:28-- Yes Dip Stick, there are several families in Wise & Jack Counties who own several hundreds, or thousands of acres as well as oil royalties that are affected by the death taxes. Our family has worked for years with lawyers to work out legally the inheritance tax situation. We may live in the country, but that does not mean we are poor or stupid. You might need to get a reality check.

Wise County resident

Anonymous said...

You are damn sure not Pro-life or Christian, your opinions and attitude on this blog contradict that. You may own guns but you would vote for those who want them taken away. Make no bones about it as soon as it is politically viable the left will erode gun rights and eventually personal ownership will be limited to the wealthy. That is why Trump was important, as incompetent and stupid as he is he already accomplished the single thing I voted for him for, and that was his SCOTUS pick. You are the worst kind of liberal,the one that wants to slap on boots and grab a gun occasionally to be cool with your country club boys.

Anonymous said...

There must be more than one Rage 'cause the original guy used to say how queer he was -- doesn't anybody remember that? That Rage character was definitely not a Christian or pro-gun. He was gay and that was his entire agenda. And now he's an expert on inheritance tax and he claims to be the baddest mofo in Wise County. Schizo if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

Captain Hook died of jock itch

Anonymous said...

"the Supreme Court has made is specifically clear that all actions during a detention must be limited to the purpose of the detention."

Huh? They've specifically said a cop can ask about anything as long as the detention isn't unnecessarily prolonged. See US v. Sharpe, 470 US 675, 686-87 (1985).