Tax Stocking Stuffers for Corporations

We already know the rich and corporations got quite a haul in the tax bill. USA Today outlines some business tax credits as if the tax breaks under the great giveaway tree aren't enough.

The massive new tax bill signed into law by President Barack Obama is filled with all kinds of holiday stocking stuffers for businesses: tax breaks for producing TV shows, grants for putting up windmills, rum subsidies for Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

There is even a tax break for people who buy race horses.

This is the most outrageous one, a tax break for corporations who invest overseas. Remember all of the rhetoric about banks not funding investment and growth in America, not loaning to businesses? This is the opposite, our Congress just made it pay to create economic growth abroad!

There is a generous tax break for banks and insurance companies that invest overseas, a tax credit for railroad track maintenance, more generous write-offs for upgrading motorsport race tracks,

I kid you not! Here is what this does. It's an exemption that allows banks, insurance companies and other financial firms to shield foreign profits from being taxed by the U.S. through 2011. Cost: $9.2 billion.

Did you think in 2008 you would read this headline, "Democrats about to pass Bush Era Tax Cuts"?

Democrats control the Senate. So, did you ever imagine this headline from Business Week, Senate Set to Pass $858 Billion Bush-Era Tax Cut Measure Today:

The U.S. Senate today is poised to pass President Barack Obama’s $858 billion proposal to extend Bush-era tax cuts for all income levels, cut payroll taxes and extend expanded jobless benefits.

Ohio Bans Use of Public Funds for Offshore Outsourcing

The governor of Ohio issued an executive order prohibiting use of public funds for outsourcing. Seems like a no brainer right? Don't use our taxpayer dollars to offshore outsource our jobs? Believe this or not, use of our money to offshore outsource our jobs happens every day, from food stamp and unemployment support to large software design projects. Yet as a result of an investigative journalism piece, Ohio, finally, does the right thing.

Columbus, Ohio--Ohio Governor Ted Strickland today issued an executive order that prohibits the expenditure of public funds for services provided offshore.

"Outsourcing jobs does not reflect Ohio values," Strickland said. "Ohioans have been among the hardest hit by more than a decade of unfair trade agreements and the trickle-down economic policies that promoted offshoring jobs at the expense of Ohioans who work for a living. We must do everything within our power to prevent outsourcing jobs because it undermines our economic development objectives, slows our recovery and deprives Ohioans and other Americans of employment opportunities."

It's been over two months since California's last budget crisis, time for a new one

Just a mere 10 weeks from the last budget crisis, California Budget Is Already in the Red:

Revenue in the three months ended Sept. 30 was 5.3 percent less than assumed in the $85 billion annual budget, state controller John Chiang reported yesterday. Income tax receipts led the gap, as unemployment reached 12.2 percent in August.

California has a $1.1 Billion drop in taxes, with a state official unemployment rate of 12.2% and one of the worst property devaluations in the country.

Manfrommiddletown already warned decreasing tax revenues will cause state budget crises in California's screwed.

House Dems Gonna Tax the Rich for Health Care

While the Senate kills any hope of any real health care reform, it looks like the House is gonna stick it to the rich. This happens to have been the original campaign promise.

House Democrats agreed yesterday to raise taxes on the wealthy to pay for a sweeping expansion of the nation's health-care system, proposing a surtax on the highest earners that could send the top federal tax rate toward 45 percent.

Beginning in 2011, the plan would target all income over $350,000 a year for families and $280,000 a year for individuals, Democratic sources said. The surtax would start at 1 percent, rise to around 1.5 percent for families earning more than $500,000, then step up again, to around 3 percent, for families earning more than $1 million, Democrats said.

IS it a tax or I won't raise your tax

I don't know, is it just me that just because it is a fee, it is still a tax.

Obama told the people that he won't raise taxes for those earning under a certain amount ($250,000 or $200,000).

So first they raised the tobacco taxes. There were those that said, those people shouldn't be smoking so it isn't a tax.

Then there is this Cap and Trade Bill. In Europe Cap and Trade type of laws made the prices increase by $1,300 a year.

If the increase is caused by government, to me it is a hidden tax.

There is talk of taxing health benefits.

Then I read that Roger Altman writes under the headline, "We'll Need To Raise Taxes Soon".

"This suggests that, possibly next year, Congress will seriously consider a value-added tax (VAT)."

Madoff Ponzi Scheme Could Cause $17 Billion in Lost Tax Revenue

This title is most amusing, Madoff Scandal May Cost Tax Revenue, where the estimates of lost revenue are as high as $17 Billion dollars.

Considering we have $8 trillion in pledges to the financial industry while Congress and the Bush administration pound on a poor auto workers union and AIG doubles it's executives salaries, doesn't $17 Billion seem trivial?

No Limits on Executive Pay in Bail Out - Treasury Guts Measures with Interim Rule

In my opinion the legislation was all for show and had no real provisions to limit executive pay for bailed out financial institutions but now we have an even worse situation.

CBS MarketWatch is reporting the Treasury released interim rules for the banks receiving the $250 Billion

Some of the corporate governance and executive compensation rules in the original bailout legislation have since been softened by interim final rules drawn up by the Treasury as part of its plan to inject capital into banks.

Congressional Hearing, May 22, Thursday, 10am, EST - Must watch! Outsourcing

A hearing that will probably have a lot of good information about globalization and US jobs is happening this Thursday. There usually is a webcast to watch these, so I want to give ya all a heads up about it. I will also write about it after the hearing is over. Details:

Hearing to Examine How to Encourage U.S. Corporations to Invest at Home, Not Abroad

Title: American Decline or Renewal?-Globalizing Jobs and Technology

Committee: House Science and Technology Committee, Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight

When: Thursday, May 22nd, 10 A.M. to 1 P.M.

Where: Rayburn House Office Building, Room 2318

*Please see the Committee announcement (attached) for more information.