Looks like we got a loophole

From Bloomberg:

State Tax Workarounds Could Mean $154 Billion Lost to Treasury

New York state lawmakers could punch a $50.6 billion hole in the federal government’s budget by revamping their state income tax.

If California followed the same approach, its legislature could keep $66.8 billion out of the U.S. Treasury. And in New Jersey, state lawmakers could hold back $12.5 billion more.

Their plans face obstacles, and not every state is pursuing the same strategy. But five Democratic-leaning states that are exploring ways to change their tax laws could remove roughly $154 billion from federal coffers over the next eight years, adding to anticipated deficits, according to an analysis compiled by Bloomberg in conjunction with Daniel Hemel, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School.

The potential drop in federal revenue reflects a furious burst of creativity among state lawmakers and tax experts in response to the Republican-sponsored federal tax-overhaul legislation that President Donald Trump signed last month. One controversial piece of the new law caps a previously unlimited federal tax benefit that individuals in high-tax states get by deducting the state and local taxes they pay. The new cap is $10,000.

Now, various states are considering circumventing that limit by switching from a state personal income tax to an employer-paid state payroll tax calibrated to produce the same amount of revenue. Employers can deduct payroll taxes fully on their federal returns.

Talk of a payroll tax maneuver is loudest now in New York. On Jan. 17, the state’s Department of Taxation and Finance released a preliminary report outlining its options for tax changes. The report includes analysis of workarounds such as “a statewide employer compensation expense tax,” or payroll tax. New York state budget director Robert Mujica says lawmakers will have draft legislation to debate within 30 days.

“What we are trying to accomplish here is to put [New Yorkers] back to where they were” before the new tax law, said Mujica. “The federal tax law aimed at the heart of New York and California, and we produce 25 percent of GDP for the nation.”

If states’ shifting to payroll taxes becomes a “large enough trend, [it] could wipe out all the savings from the repeal of the SALT deduction — and then some,” wrote the authors.

That’s because most federal taxpayers don’t itemize their deductions — meaning they don’t benefit from the SALT write-off for state income taxes. But all employers could deduct payroll taxes as expenses, the paper notes, making “a sizable portion of all current state income taxes deductible.”

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87 Responses to Looks like we got a loophole

  1. Fabius Maximus says:

    Friskies

  2. Fabius Maximus says:

    Is this a sign of true greatness?

    http://www.scarymommy.com/benton-kentucky-high-school-shooting/
    “Please realize that yesterday’s school shooting got barely a blip as far as news coverage and today’s, however high the count of dead or wounded children, won’t get much more. This is becoming our normal, and as a nation, we should be horrified.”

  3. grim says:

    I thought the same thing this morning. I saw it pop up on my newsfeed and I was a little bit surprised that I hadn’t heard. I chalked it up to being somewhat out of the loop yesterday. I did have the TV and Radio on at various points in the day, and I’m sure I would have noticed it. I always spend a few minutes at night on the couch browsing the news sites, if anything was there, it wasn’t really prominent.

  4. Juice Box says:

    Another murderous teenage boy, with access to guns. Blame the parents.

  5. Very Stable Genius says:

    @nytimes

    The school shooting in Kentucky was the 11th at a U.S. school this year,
    and roughly the 50th of the academic year

  6. Very Stable Genius says:

    @Weinsteinlaw

    Today the president of the United States attacked Jim Acosta, Chuck Schumer, the Democratic Party, the FBI, and Samsung but couldn’t be bothered to say one word about the tragic school shooting in Kentucky.
    What a disgrace.

  7. grim says:

    Not sure why Trump and the Republicans would have any problem at all with the most prosperous states in the nation reducing taxes for million of Americans. Think about all the potential increases in spending, savings, investment, and business. NY, CA, NJ, CT are embracing Trump’s vision of making America great! We hear you loud and clear President Trump, and we’re going to cut taxes!

  8. Very Stable Genius says:

    NJ got to stop subsidizing unproductive southern republican states

    grim says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:21 am
    Not sure why Trump and the Republicans would have any problem at all with the most prosperous states in the nation reducing taxes for million of Americans. Think about all the potential increases in spending, savings, investment, and business. NY, CA, NJ, CT are embracing Trump’s vision of making America great! We hear you loud and clear President Trump, and we’re going to cut taxes!

  9. grim says:

    For sure, subsidies and welfare keep the poor down. Those southern states need a good bit of tough love, put your boots on, get to work.

  10. Very Stable Genius says:

    most conservative republican southern states are the poorest in the nation while liberal statesare the wealthiest most productive. why’s that?

  11. grim says:

    Dumb luck most probably, surely not politics.

  12. The Great Pumpkin says:

    This might be your best post ever.

    Very Stable Genius says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:31 am
    most conservative republican southern states are the poorest in the nation while liberal statesare the wealthiest most productive. why’s that?

  13. SorryToLeave says:

    ” to an employer-paid state payroll tax calibrated to produce the same amount of revenue”

    Hahahahahahahahaha… that’s how they keep the wage-earners in the cesspool. But what about the people that actually MAKE the jobs? They will leave.

    Nice try. LOLOLOLOL. Losers.

  14. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    NJ got to stop subsidizing unproductive southern republican states

    Can you apply that logic to the suburbs and NJ’s abbott districts

  15. Blue Ribbon Teacher says:

    most conservative republican southern states are the poorest in the nation while liberal statesare the wealthiest most productive. why’s that?

    Can you apply that logic to the suburbs and NJ’s abbott districts

  16. D-FENS says:

    Doesn’t this “loophole” create incentive for businesses to leave?

  17. nwnj says:

    Another harebrained scheme, what happens if you’re self employed?

  18. grim says:

    Shifting dollars from a withholding bucket to a payroll tax bucket is a net wash, it would impact payroll companies from a change perspective more than the companies handing out the payroll taxes. Maybe some additional accounting/tax work on the corporate side when filling, but it seems minor to me.

  19. Russian Bot says:

    I believe that if you’re self-employed, you can form a c corp (unless your profession is prohibited from doing that) and be an employee of it.

  20. Ottoman says:

    If most or even much of the money the blue states sends to the red states actually went to poor people, you might have a point. Unfortunately most of it funds the trickle down Ponzi scheme republicans keep going to enrich their donors.

    A hundred years of studies prove that giving money to poor people is what creates jobs and incentives.

    grim says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:30 am
    For sure, subsidies and welfare keep the poor down. Those southern states need a good bit of tough love, put your boots on, get to work.

  21. Ottoman says:

    Because politics has nothing to do with the commitment to excellent education, welfare, and infrastructure that defines the successful blue states. Also, the number of red states in which you can find an acceptable pizza is decidedly in the low single digits.

    grim says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:35 am
    Dumb luck most probably, surely not politics.

  22. nwnj says:

    The point was, there are no payroll taxes when you’re self employed.

  23. grim says:

    Self employed people got their cheese with the pass-through tax reduction, and they don’t have restrictions on write offs.

  24. Russian Bot says:

    Also, the states might also tinker with the LLC , LLP and PC statutes to allow professionals like lawyers to classified as employees. Law firms can’t be s or c corps in any state, as far as I know.

  25. D-FENS says:

    Yes…for now.

    But when NJ politicians inevitably raise taxes…

    grim says:
    January 24, 2018 at 9:12 am
    Shifting dollars from a withholding bucket to a payroll tax bucket is a net wash, it would impact payroll companies from a change perspective more than the companies handing out the payroll taxes. Maybe some additional accounting/tax work on the corporate side when filling, but it seems minor to me.

  26. Russian Bot says:

    There is a Federal self-employment tax, which is substantially the same thing as a payroll tax.

  27. grim says:

    New York’s approach is brilliant I think, much better than NJ’s harebrained scheme of trying to use charitable contributions.

    Payroll companies would scramble, and if you were doing manual payroll, it would be more work for you, but who the hell does manual payroll?

  28. Fast Eddie says:

    A hundred years of studies prove that giving money to poor people is what creates jobs and incentives.

    LMAO!! The incentive to cash a welfare check is not work.

  29. yome says:

    US Companies Foreign Profit will be worth more in the Dollar Exchange when they exchange foreign Currency to the Dollar . Dollar is in a 3 year low. Stock bull market continues. Somebody tell me when to get out!!! FOMO continues

  30. Libturd, not seeing school shootings as a partisan issue whatsoever. says:

    I always wonder about the psyche of the shooters in these school shootings. I question whether the great pussification has anything to do with this? When I was a kid in the 70s, kids were always bullied. Heck, I got an atomic wedgie on my first day of kindergarten as my two older sisters sat by and idly watched. It was almost like a right of passage. The bullies were always terrible students who you knew had no future, but you were defenseless against them. If there was any solace to be found, it was in knowing that your peers all went through the same thing and that the bully would end up in Vo-tech (trade school) soon enough and would one day probably end up repairing your car or collecting your trash. I don’t remember any kids that were bullied seeking retribution. If you told your parents and they called the school, you would end up receiving an even bigger beat down. So you dealt with the adversity and grew from it. Sometimes, life is not fair. Sometimes you simply had to fight back.

    Today, I witness no bullying in the schools (at least through my son’s first 8 years). Heck, Gator Jr. has been so indoctrinated against it that I don’t think bullies can stand a chance anymore. Instead, I think these kids seek attention in other ways. For the most part, they have become class clowns under the cloak of three and four-letter acronyms. Regardless, I think kids can no longer deal with adversity. We have snowflaked them into becoming mental midgets. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to tell my son to suck it up and life is not always fair. He too, has a lot of trouble with dealing with things when they don’t go his way. Here’s an example. He has been a straight A student and again received high honors along with 29 other 7th graders for the first marking period. He’s well on his way to repeating the feat this 2nd marking period. Yesterday, he checks his grades and sees that he got a 0 zero on a chemistry lab that the teacher claims he did not hand in. He had a low A going into the quarterly exam (which this asshat of a teacher takes forever to grade), but now has an 86 average. He broke into tears as he knows he handed it in last Friday, though it wasn’t due until yesterday. I told him to email the teacher. He did and the teacher asked him to double check his locker and book bag today. I ask him if it’s possible he forgot to write his name on the lab, to which he answers that it is possible. So I tell him, well, that’s one costly mistake. Now, I’m not a gun owner, nor would I expect my son to head into school and put a bullet into this teacher’s head. But watching him deal with this situation, I could see how some kids could drive themselves to do such a thing. Throw in some testosterone from the outbreak of puberty and I can see something like this easily occurring. Most kids no longer have to deal with any kind of adversity.

    I read a post on FaceBook this morning where a mother was extremely upset as a school aide yelled at her daughter (in front of her peers) for throwing snow at some other girls after school. This was in a grade 4-6 school. The response from the other parents was to report this aide for unfairly humiliating her daughter so it doesn’t happen again. The excuse? Kids can’t be kids anymore. I would argue that kids are not kids anymore because they can no longer handle any sort of adversity.

    I always read the minutes of the monthly Board Of Education meetings. On average, there are two or three bullying incidents reported to the Office on Bullying (or whatever the review panel is called). Every single time, the investigations are closed with no sign of bullying. Why? I’m guessing that we have softened our kids to the point where they can’t even handle the slightest amount of adversity in their lives.

    I could be completely off base here and I’m sure things are probably a bit different in urban schools. Though, I think I’m on to something here. Or ON something, most of you would say.

  31. Russian Bot says:

    The pass through tax reduction phases out for professional service providers like dr.s, lawyers, cpa’s etc. at around 3 or 4ook income if I recall correctly. Those kinds of professionals are restricted to practicing through certain entities like partnerships, sole proprietors, LLPs, PAs, PCs etc. That would be alot of influential high earners lobbying the state legislatures for changes LLP, PA and PC statutes to somehow allow them to be classified as employees and have their professional corporations subject to payroll taxes for them. Sorry people in Alabama.

  32. Fast Eddie says:

    The list of companies boosting pay to $15/hr. at a minimum is growing daily – all based on corporate tax breaks. And all done without centrist meddling.

  33. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Blue state kick the crap out of red states in terms of economics. What’s funny? They have low cost/low taxes, what the Republicans hail as the holy grail for a successful economy, so why are they getting destroyed by high cost/high tax states? Getting beat so bad, that the high tax blue states actually have to subsidize the low tax red states.

  34. dentss dunnigan says:

    Great idea ..you get the benefit of lower rates plus no more AMT …what’s not to like ..

  35. Nomad says:

    Lib,

    Do kids have easier access to guns today vs 30+ years ago? It seems in many of these cases, there is either easy access or there are vivid signs the shooter has some kind of issue(s). Taking away easy access and / or intervention when there are glaring signs of a pending issue alone would reduce the incidences. In Newtown, mom left guns and ammo laying around the house. If the kid was determined, I suppose locks would only slow them down. Snowflaking & social media have not helped. Maybe its time to reinstate the draft, the discipline and focus on the group vs the individual couldn’t hurt.

  36. Trick says:

    Lib,

    We took 7 kids snow tubing for my sons 10th bday this weekend. Towards the end of the 2 hour season one of the kids started messing around with the others. After they asked him to stop he jumped one of them, another kid tried to break it up and he attacked him. Realizing he was outnumbered he flipped them the bird and took off. Since his father was there you would think it would be taken care-off, instead the father blasted the other kids for setting his son off. This is the same kid that choked one of our soccer players during a game in the fall. The same father took the kid out of the game for a few minutes and spoke to our team about sportsmanship. Again he was blaming others for causing his sons outburst.

  37. ExJersey says:

    9:56 You have put some thought into this. I would say bullying is still alive and well, especially at ‘nicer’ schools. Kids in their cliques, monied kids vs non-monied. Urban schools? Probably more gang vs gang stuff. Still ugly, still lethal.

  38. ExJersey says:

    At Millburn HS they call it ‘hazing’ kind of Fraternal.

  39. No One says:

    I agree with Grim, I don’t think Republicans particularly wanted to raise taxes in high tax states by taking away SALT. But because Dems wouldn’t cross the aisle in the tax cut, they were mandated to offset tax cuts in some places with hikes in others. So they basically said – ok, Dems won’t cooperate, your states get to provide the offset with your SALT deductions. But if states change their laws and figure out a way to turn the taxes back into deductible taxes, the only consequence is potentially a bigger budget deficit, possibly offset by the economic improvement of lower effective taxes.

    But I’m the one screwed. Because my employer doesn’t withhold my taxes, being a partner in a LP, I have to pay via quarterly estimated taxes regardless of what NJ figures out for payroll taxes. And I’m estimating paying roughly $1m this year, with a higher effective rate than last year.

  40. ExJersey says:

    10:45 you ballin’ but those payments are a b-i-t-c-h — same with contractors. Gotta really be on top of it. The Gubmint takes their cut and then some.

  41. ExJersey says:

    The one thing that I will acknowledge is that we seem to have entered a “victimhood” period where this is a badge of honor and people who can play the victim can milk the system. Sounds strange, but some of you might understand. These are kids and adults to be avoided.

  42. grim says:

    I am developing a new app for parents. It will allow them to hire local bullies in their area to provide role-play bulling experiences for your children, in a safe and supportive environment.

  43. Bystander says:

    “the bully would end up in Vo-tech (trade school) soon enough and would one day probably end up repairing your car or collecting your trash.”

    From what I can tell, they also issue permits in your town, write you speeding tickets, or have some cushy government job that requires little skillset other than being a d*ck.

  44. Trick says:

    Bullying today is less physical and more mental

  45. Libturd, not seeing school shootings as a partisan issue whatsoever. says:

    Bystander.

    So true.

  46. Libturd, not seeing school shootings as a partisan issue whatsoever. says:

    Not sure there is any more access to guns then their used to be. Thep arents of the bullies, when I was growing up, tended to be bullies themselves. So going to them was another useless cause and would also return more pain when their kid found out.

    I agree that bullying is more mental these days, but would argue that that is only due to the lack of adversity these kids face. Physical or mental.

    BTW, my kid just texted me and he got a 75 on the missing lab that miraculously showed up and a 92 on the quarterly. He’ll get his first B+ ever. I’m sure he’ll be devastated and we’ll never hear the end of it. I told him that I was proud of him and that he’s still way ahead of where I was in 7th grade and that he has two more quarters to get it back up if that’s his prerogative. He’ll have to settle for regular honors for a quarter.

  47. Libturd says:

    Grim. The problem with your school of adversity is that you would be hard pressed to find parents willing to send in their kids. Mine can be student number one. He’s an oversensitive puzzy. His main redeeming value is that he is smart as hell and will probably be able to pay someone one day to fight his battles. He’s also really quite the math whiz, for a non-Asian. Last night’s dinner conversation was centered around uses of Pythagorean’s Theory. It should have been about Science apparently.

  48. A Home Buyer says:

    Lib,

    I think there are just so many problems joined together then naming one item probably does not due the issue justice.

    Overmedicating children, breakdown of the mental health system, overdependence on teachers as primary care givers, dual-income working hours interrupting family bonds, TV / Internet de-socialization, advertisement / click based inflammatory media, high stakes testing in education, excessive and unrealistic violence propagated by Hollywood / Videogames, litigation based society, dysfunctional political system, struggling economic environment, breakdown of moral / social hierarchy, lack of common understanding of technical and financial matters, etc.

    Not my area of expertise, but in college while taking a “gen-ed” class or whichever the current language for those courses are, the professor taught a theory that crime is a reflection of the state of society. A normal functioning society will always have crime (in fact crime is an inherent structure of society), however the nature of the crime is determined by the society’s health and wellbeing.

    I do not take a positive view of the future.

  49. nwnj says:

    So it turns out the Polish DR being deported over petty charges as a kid was fake news. The guy is a serial offender.

  50. D-FENS says:

    10:38AM

    I have a kid with impulses and behavioral issues. It isn’t easy.

    I don’t know about the particular kid you spoke about, but what happens to my son…quite often is that other kids sense that he has a short fuse…they pick on him and set him off. It’s a joke to them.

    I’ve told my son I will never treat him differently than anyone else…he is responsible for his own actions. After all, that’s how he’ll be treated in life when he grows up.

  51. Libturd says:

    Interesting take Home Buyer. I agree with you on crime always existing and reflecting the current state. But the willingness to take out innocent lives is what appears to have changed IMO. There have and always will be murders. But even gangbangers try to avoid the loss of innocent lives. The incidence of serial type killers, where the victims are the greater society and not just revenge against the supposed responsible individuals is definitely on the rise. Your list of reasons is certainly thorough and pinpointing it to one thing is silly per se. But, some things have greater influence than others.

    It is my personal opinion that the pendulum has swung way to far to the Mr. Softee side. Do we really want to be the Borg?

  52. Libturd says:

    D-Fens. Kids like yours always faced more adversity. They learned to deal with it as they got older. Almost like a survival mechanism, they learn that sticks and stones don’t break their bones. I truly fear for the direction society is going in. The world is not a perfect place. It never will be. Certainly not as long as us silly humans believe in religion for starters. We really have not evolved that much from the wild kingdom.

  53. Libturd says:

    And believe me. I have a kid who is going to be picked on the rest of his life for something beyond his control. I expect to have to teach a lot of lessons to shallow-minded individuals for the rest of his life. It’s bad enough that I try to teach everyone how to drive already.

  54. D-FENS says:

    Federal law prohibits handgun ownership to anyone under the age of 18. He likely got it from a relative. If the owner of the handgun used in the shooting left it within access of the minor who shot up the school, they should be prosecuted. Frankly, the charges should even be as severe as a murder charge.

  55. Trick says:

    D-Fens,
    Understood, and that was not the case.

    This was a small group and other children would never instigate.

    The child is our neighbor and gets into it all the time,
    In the eyes of his parents he is never wrong and has never heard the word NO.

  56. Libturd says:

    Agreed D. No doubt, the kid will be on mind-numbing drugs which he needs for a mental illness he inherited from his parents. Stupid is as Stupid does. Everyone gets off except for the parents of the dead kids.

  57. Libturd says:

    “The apple rarely falls far from the tree.”

    Not to say that there aren’t some kids who have no control whatsoever over their impulses. We have a friend with severe ADHD and though his parents sucked at raising him at the beginning (rewarding him for everything he did, good or bad). The kid has real mental issues. He is just now returning to our school system for a period a day. Always a straight-A student too. Just completely out of his mind for attention. He reminds me a lot of the POTUS.

  58. The Great Pumpkin says:

    Exactly what expat does to me.

    “I don’t know about the particular kid you spoke about, but what happens to my son…quite often is that other kids sense that he has a short fuse…they pick on him and set him off. It’s a joke to them.”

  59. Comrade Nom Deplume, The Snake Pliskin of NJ says:

    “nwnj says:
    January 24, 2018 at 9:22 am
    The point was, there are no payroll taxes when you’re self employed.”

    Not true. There are equivalent self-employment taxes.

  60. Libturd says:

    And effectively.

  61. A Home Buyer says:

    Yes, because a grown man voluntarily and continuously going to an anonymous real estate blog (that he has sworn several times to leave) to discuss views almost all regulars disagree with and foolishly revealing his personal information through life stories is totally equivalent.

    Such a martyr.

  62. Comrade Nom Deplume, The Snake Pliskin of NJ says:

    These tax plans are quite interesting and have better prospects than the ridiculous donation in lieu scheme that was a cute idea but wouldn’t work.

    Grim is correct about it being a wash on its face, but I do have to look at whether this would incentivize outmigration.

  63. A Home Buyer says:

    Lib,

    That was generally the professors point. Society is decaying and this change is being reflected in the increase in heinous acts committed.

  64. Comrade Nom Deplume, The Snake Pliskin of NJ says:

    “D-FENS says:
    January 24, 2018 at 12:09 pm
    Federal law prohibits handgun ownership to anyone under the age of 18. He likely got it from a relative. If the owner of the handgun used in the shooting left it within access of the minor who shot up the school, they should be prosecuted. Frankly, the charges should even be as severe as a murder charge.”

    Depends on the state but there may be some criminal culpability. The problem is intent; if the gun was taken surreptiously, there’s no intent. Even a gift to the minor (which has its own problems) doesn’t convey intent. At best, you can allege manslaughter due to reckless disregard but that is typically not applied to the person who doesn’t actually do the deed. Likely negligent homicide or involuntary manslaughter is the most you can hope to attach for criminal penalties.

    Civil, however, is a different matter. Unless there is a state law in effect that conveys immunity for the torts of a minor (PA has one), whoever owned the gun is bankrupt as of right now. They just don’t know it yet.

  65. Comrade Nom Deplume, The Snake Pliskin of NJ says:

    “I am developing a new app for parents. It will allow them to hire local bullies in their area to provide role-play bulling experiences for your children, in a safe and supportive environment.”

    Grim, I hope you’re joking. I actually considered starting a service that was similar in focus and saw that there was just a minefield of potential legal issues.

  66. D-FENS says:

    Are they increasing?

    A Home Buyer says:
    January 24, 2018 at 12:45 pm
    Lib,

    That was generally the professors point. Society is decaying and this change is being reflected in the increase in heinous acts committed.

  67. Not A Home Buyer says:

    People cheer up, for god’s sake.

    It looks bad, always does – sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel is the 7:55 express, but most time is sunshine.

    My curriculum vitae, as an elder Xr. Seen this before. Just look up the movies “Over the Edge” @1979 and “Lost Angels” @1989. I grew up in that period. Saw AIDS, crackheads, etc – (my early career foray into Public Safety and Health Care).

    The only difference right now, is that the people truly in charge, really have no moral compass – and of course is because they are “Locust Boomers”. Here is where Strauss–Howe generational theory is on the spot.

    Whether Trump, Clintons, Kochs, etc – what rules is naked self interest. The tech billionaire class like Thiels, Bezos, and others really believe they are “special” and above the law, and above mere humans. There were always problems, but from Roosevelts (Teddy & Franklin), Johnson, even Nixon. They saw a duty to make the country a bit better. You don’t see that today.

    Anyone writing about the dangers of hubris today is not likely to find himself wildly popular. We live in an age of braggarts, big mouths, preening fools, and arrogant idiots; it is an age where ignorance is lauded and celebrated as wisdom, and the gutter is displayed to the public as something to be emulated. The price for all of this will inevitably be paid.

    The Greeks of late antiquity had 3 goddess that would visit together. Fortune would come first. Followed by Hybris (Hubris) and finally Nemesis, and her function was to deliver punishment to those who were guilty of hubris. She was the punisher of undeserved good fortune, and the chastiser of those who overreached themselves. Her name in Latin was Adrastia. You have probably never heard of her, and this very fact goes a long way to proving my point about the narcissistic streak of our modern culture.

    How it relates to today, is that sooner or later will get our societal spanking. From papering over the true cause of the financial crisis. To the blind true believer like NWNJ -that anything against Trump is “fake” news – dude watch the movie – Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy, it has much more relevance into what’s going on than you think. This is because W Bush broke the intelligence system by filling it with contractors, which at heart are mercenary. Intelligence is a field like the mob. Once in, you are lifer. Now contractors are running amok.

    We just need to be able to survive the locust boomers.

  68. Libturd says:

    This is hard to tell in the days of social media.

  69. D-FENS says:

    I would argue that they are not increasing…possibly even decreasing when you look at all of human history. There is a dark side to humanity that will always exist.

    That said, I believe humanity is 99% good… 1% bad. The bad stuff just stands out and we struggle to understand it.

  70. Fabius Maximus says:

    “I am developing a new app for parents. It will allow them to hire local bullies in their area to provide role-play bulling experiences for your children, in a safe and supportive environment.”

    Why bother with an app. I put my kid in a wrestling program for a year. Took a pounding in a controlled environment and learnt some valuable life lessons. One of which was, you have to be able to step onto the mat even though you know its going to hurt.

    A friend had a daughter in the program. A waif of a girl but it all evens out on weight. She got picked on in the school yard by a boy bigger than her and the Vice Principal was trying to explain to my friend that her daughters choke hold was frowned upon.

  71. Libturd says:

    “That said, I believe humanity is 99% good… 1% bad. The bad stuff just stands out and we struggle to understand it.”

    I use this argument frequently when my sensitive son gets scared of things he hears on the news. HE, understands the odds. Shame so many don’t. Like those who play the lottery and choose not to be vaccinated.

  72. A Home Buyer says:

    Not a Home Buyer,

    I don’t exactly live in a cave waiting for the world to end. I also know it won’t.

    But I also don’t want to be caught unprepared for the inevitable correction as collateral damage.

  73. dentss dunnigan says:

    Why exactly should lawmakers rush to change tax law in a way that would mainly help the richest households? These are the very groups that benefited the most from the Trump-GOP tax plan. How can piling on more tax cuts for these households improve the situation?

  74. Libturd says:

    The tax laws favored the rich long before this reform. Now it favors them even more. And the tradition of making sure a few crumbs are thrown our way continues unabated.

    Sadly, most Republican voters think Trump is helping them when he is pretty much helping the same corporate elites that the Dem leaders support, but have convinced minorities in this country and the liberal elite that they somehow care for them. Quite frankly, Trump did an excellent job distributing the crumbs. Nothing makes the masses go gaga more than a couple hundred dollars of money they used to not have. It really didn’t take much to get morons to buy homes and cars with similar tiny incentives.

  75. dentss dunnigan says:

    Well under our last president raises were nonexistent ,we’re now seeing raises with those measly thousands of dollars bonus crumbs ,with the redistributing wealth through Obamacare mandate gone as well …..more to come I’m sure .

  76. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Fab – No children of Democrat parents were hurt. Why would CNN or MSNBC care? They probably did little “high fives” during commercial breaks.

    “Please realize that yesterday’s school shooting got barely a blip as far as news coverage and today’s, however high the count of dead or wounded children, won’t get much more. This is becoming our normal, and as a nation, we should be horrified.”

  77. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    You’re right grim. If you can’t the white people to get up off their asses, how can you expect…

    For sure, subsidies and welfare keep the poor down. Those southern states need a good bit of tough love, put your boots on, get to work.

  78. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    ^^^Wait a minute. Did I completely miss your facetiousness?

  79. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    Speaking of facetiousness, I know one of these guys is an uneducated dolt. I’m not sure about the other one.

    BJ Pumps – don’t get your hopes up.

    The Great Pumpkin says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:38 am
    This might be your best post ever.

    Very Stable Genius says:
    January 24, 2018 at 7:31 am
    most conservative republican southern states are the poorest in the nation while liberal statesare the wealthiest most productive. why’s that?

  80. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    If that were true wouldn’t we just have trucks driving around in poor neighborhoods sprinkling cash onto the streets? Come to think of it, I guess that is what we do.

    A hundred years of studies prove that giving money to poor people is what creates jobs and incentives.

  81. The Original NJ ExPat says:

    It’s not about your short parts, Pumps. It’s that you don’t play well with others and you leave trash all over the playground.

    The Great Pumpkin says:
    January 24, 2018 at 12:29 pm
    Exactly what expat does to me.

    “I don’t know about the particular kid you spoke about, but what happens to my son…quite often is that other kids sense that he has a short fuse…they pick on him and set him off. It’s a joke to them.”

  82. The Great Pumpkin says:

    So true. Cheap ruined it all.

    “True. A lot of people think Honda is the gold standard, but the truth is that their GC series engines aren’t really that great. The GX series is definitely great, but it costs much more. That is the rub, people want great reliable goods for cheap. It used to be you could just pick a manufacturer and trust they built a quality product, but everyone being a freaking cheapskate has ruined pretty much every industry pertaining to durable goods. Can’t blame the manufacturers, the insatiable consumers drive them, after all.”

  83. Fabius Maximus says:

    Nice to see there are at least a few rational adults in this adminsitration.

    https://twitter.com/NatashaBertrand/status/956300478010351617

  84. Fabius Maximus says:

    One of my first boses gave me a great piece of advice. Bonuses may seem great, but a pay raise, is the bonus that comes back year after year.

    I haven’t see real pay raises since 2003.

  85. Fabius Maximus says:

    Priceless
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/chipper-jones-vladimir-guerrero-jim-thome-and-trevor-hoffman-earn-hall-of-fame-induction-1516837362
    Fans of his biggest rival, the New York Mets, would frequently taunt him with chants of “Larry” when he came to town. Jones responded by naming one of his sons Shea, a tribute to the Mets’ former home, the road stadium in which he hit more homers than any other.

  86. Const says:

    https://arbat.dreamwidth.org/922215.html?thread=47354471#cmt47354471

    Sorry for cyrillic, this is a conservative russian-american blog.
    The pictures are by
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herluf_Bidstrup

    Comment says that “he thought that what’s happening in this
    caricature is something terrible”.

    Notice how everyone gets better and ignore the guy on the right.
    That’s how the situation is gonna improve.

    I’ve been silently reading this blog for the last 15 yrs.
    Many thanks to everyone, great reading.

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