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Perfectly Legal the Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Richand Cheat Everybody Else by David Cay Johnston - The Suckered Unrich

Perfectly Legal the Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Richand Cheat Everybody Else by David Cay Johnston - The Suckered Unrich

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Published by: sallyi889 on Oct 24, 2011
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Perfectly Legal: The Covert Campaign to Rig Our Tax System to Benefit the Super Rich--and Cheat

Everybody Else by David Cay Johnston

The Suckered Unrich!

Most Americans would agree that they are duty bound as beneficiaries of our democracy to pay taxes, and the majority of us do pay —-exorbitantly. But what about those who do not pay their fair share? David Cay Johnston, a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter for the New York Times, here reveals how fairness and equity have eroded from the American tax system. Johnston describes in shocking detail the loopholes our government provides the super rich--from private individuals to profitable corporations—-to hide their wealth, to defer or evade tax payments, and to pass the bill to law-abiding middle-class Americans. The loss in revenue imposes a severe cost on honest taxpayers through reduced services, increased federal debt, and a weight on the middle class that threatens to impede its ability to achieve upward social mobility. Admitting the extreme complexity of our economy and by extension our tax code, Johnston points out that the very wealthy do, of course, pay taxes. However, because of shelters that allow them to understate most of their income, they pay little more on average than most Americans on the dollar. This is regressive, and unquestionably favors the superrich. Johnston includes examples of outrageous corporate malfeasance (such as companies that establish off-shore tax addresses) and exposes the tax benefits of the particularly loathsome practice made famous by Jack Welch, in which thousands of wage earners are laid off while a handful of executives are granted hundreds of millions of dollars through deferred compensation, company stock options, and lucrative retirement packages, all at stock holders xpense. In addition to these offenses, he describes the tax evasion methods of those who simply defy the law and are

emboldened by a beleaguered IRS that is too underfunded to serve as an effective deterrent to tax cheats. Johnston calls for a complete overhaul of the system. But because those who most benefit from these laws comprise the donor class that supports the government power structure, our prospects for reform remain very bleak. --Silvana Tropea Features: * Click here to view our Condition Guide and Shipping Prices Perfectly Legal is the result of nine years of investigative research by the author. Some sources that he cites are tax lawyers, accountants, preparers, and tax protesters. Mr. Johnson observes that our tax system now forces most Americans to subsidize the lifestyles of the very rich, who enjoy the benefits of our democracy without paying their fair share of its price. There are examples of tax engineers that for a large fee will share schemes that allow tax evasion by exploiting a plethora of tax loopholes. Of the many means employed to cheat on taxes, the deferral of compensation was an interesting and very common method. The battle over jet-travel perks was another expensive tax avoidance controversy. The chapter Big Payday on executives compensation was an eye-opener. Is anyone worth some of these compensation packages? No! But thats corporate greed in its most blatant form. The author demonstrates that greed is not owned solely by corporations and is often not easily detected. It is also rarely prosecuted. Some more of the topics that struck me the most are: The myth of the estate tax causing a loss of family farms. Most interesting is the the reason why the rich like Warren Buffett, George Soros, and Bill Gates, Sr. support the estate tax. Mr. Johnston states a disturbing factSome of the biggest fortunes in America have never been taxed, not even once. The hidden side-effects of the Alternative Minimum Tax or otherwise called the Stealth Tax. How tax evasion vehicles are promoted by tax advisers and large financial firms in an open fashion. Some of those advisers were former IRS employees. The 861 position was investigated. The business philosophy employed by a few notorious CEOs which basically amounts to squeezing the pay and numbers of workers and then rewarding the executive on a ridiculous level. How patriotism (remember the old logo Made in America?) has taken a back seat while American corporations expatriate offshore.

The details of oil companies tax dodging schemes such as claiming profits in a foreign country and claiming expenses in the U.S. The moral hazard of the limited liability partnerships(LLPs). These partnerships limit the accountability of partners, removing potential incentive to monitor each other. What is in short supply in America is not capital, but income- at least for the half of Americans getting by on less than $28,000 per year - and educated minds. But our policy is aimed at more capital in the hands of the few, not at higher incomes for most so that they can acquire more assets... Page 312-313. Transparency is good for the taxpayers overall, bad for the favored few. Page 315. Those are a few of the astute observations made by the author. If you only read one book the politics of taxes and the rich, I recommend reading Perfectly Legal by David Cay Johnston!

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