« Reading the appellate en banc opinion as Judge Sullivan readies a hearing in the Michael Flynn case | Main | Laurence Fox as - what? »

29 September 2020

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Fred

Just how does a member of the Senate (public servant!) married to a school teacher generate a $13 million in profit?

Artemesia

Fred -- "Income from book sales . . ."

Maybe that's been the practice for longer than I'm aware of, that people in high political position become authors. Many are ghost-written.

Not sure how many genuine sales are made, or whether such books are a scheme between publishers, "candidate", and taxpayer-funded entities to boost or exploit a public figure.

It's bothersome that public libraries are so often major customers for these revenue-generators that make little contribution to history or culture.

Eric Newhill

Fred,
Book sales and speaking engagements are ostensibly the source of much profit. I have long thought that the book sales and speaking payments these people enjoy are some kind of money laundering schemes. If only we had investigative reporters with cojones.

The Twisted Genius

Since leaving office the Bidens made $15.6 million in book sales and speaking engagements. They reported earning $11 million immediately after leaving the White House in 2017 and $4.5 million in 2018. Their tax returns showed they paid $5.2 million in federal taxes between those two years. These are the figures from Biden’s 2018 return:
Adjusted gross income: $4,580,437
Taxes paid: $1,528,208, or 33% rate
Charity: $275,796, or 6%

Biden wasn’t a Senator or VP when he made that kind of money. His school teacher wife made $90,000 a year teaching English at a Northern Virginia Community College. She also made money on book deals and speaking engagements, though it wasn’t quite as lucrative as Joe’s deals.

Establishing an S-corp was a widespread and important move by near every self-employed business person I knew over a seven year period. It was far more common than going full incorporation or LLC for both tax and legal liability reasons. I thought the idea was to pay as little in taxes as the law allows. What this does mean is that Joe shouldn’t be passing himself off as a regular working stiff. He’s most likely part of the top 1%, at least in the top 5%.

turcopolier

TTG

Nobody said it was illegal. It is grand to know that a "union guy" like him and the lovely Dr. Jill have done so well. Someone pointed out to me that plain old Jill (at that time) let Joe drive her husband's Corvette when they were newly he-ing and she-ing and Joe wrecked it. I hope he paid the man for the damage.

blue peacock

Does anyone find it fascinating that with all this media sanctimony on the wealthy taking advantage of the complex tax code with benefits & loopholes designed for them, that none of the spokesmodels are calling for a dramatic simplification? What happened to the flat tax with no deductions that had at least tiny momentum couple decades back?

Yeah, the oligarchy and the bought & paid for politicians who write the legislation didn't want any of that. When it comes to economics, both the conservatives and the liberals while screaming marxism and racist to each other are busy enacting socialism for the Top 0.1%. Stripping the working & middle classes is what both sides have successfully accomplished over the past 40+ years. And so has Trumpism!

Fred

TTG,

So while a member of the US Senate Holy Joe was also a "self-employed business person...". Yep, I agree, and access is why all those 'fine people' bought many, many, times $15,000,000 dollars worth of books, $15mil only being the profit that had to be off-set with that eeeevil tax shelter. And to think that Rube Rostenkowski got driven from office for a stamp scandal.

The Twisted Genius

Fred,

You're having serious trouble grasping the chronology. Those book deals and speaking engagements came after he was done being VP and long after he was a member of the Senate. It couldn't have been that eeeevil a tax shelter if it still left his paying a 33% rate. As far as I know Joe didn't claim $70,000 in haircuts as a write off or over $700K in consulting fees to Ivanka while she was simultaneously a salaried employee of the Trump organization. No wonder Trump's under audit.

However, on the plus side, Trump can point out he donates his salary back to the USG. That two million over four years. That's not close to what Biden paid in taxes over that same period, but it's a lot better than that $750 figure.

turcopolier

TTG

Enlighten me on the subject of Trump's AMT payments. I have looked in the article and not seen the subject. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/mar/14/donald-trump-tax-return-leaked-alternative-minimum

The Twisted Genius

pl,

Trump paid 31 million in AMT in 2005 for a 25% tax rate. That a huge chunk of the $95 million he paid in taxes over 18 years. In 11 of those years, he paid no taxes. That a real estate guy like Trump pays little taxes isn't that big a surprise. It fits with Leona Helmsley's mantra of "taxes are for little people." What is a revelation is how hollow the Trump organization is and in debt Trump is. He's a lousy businessman, but a first rate con man.

Fred

TTG,

I'ld never say he's getting bribed in advance or paid for services rendered. I have enough enemies, even if I am a nobody.

turcopolier

TTG

That's for ONE YEAR. What about the others? IMO you know nothing about business. You remind me of Obama or Colonel Marc Powe, another scholarship boy all the way, a deluded idealist. Money is not free. You would have learned that if you had ever been in business, as opposed to cover. It does not depend in the real world on justifying appropriations to Congress. Although, God knows, I have done my share of that.

The Twisted Genius

pl,

His total taxes paid over 18 years was $95 million. The $31 million AMT payment for 2005, that one year, accounts for a third of his total taxes over that 18 year period. If the IRS audits and the NYAG investigation of the Trump organization both come up empty, good for him. Maybe he'll fare better than he did with his Trump Foundation now under court ordered dissolution. He had to pay $2 million for misuse of foundation funds, but got out with no criminal conviction... so far. There's hard hearted businessmen and there are crooked con men.

I have two brothers who did quite well in their own businesses, one in industrial machine repair and the other in forest management/logging. I know how the real business world works,

turcopolier

TTG

No. You are not your brothers any more than Gingrich is his step father. You have no idea of the differences between government, business and the church. You are an other worldly soldier. You should have been a priest. Pray for our brothers long dead in Palestine.

The Twisted Genius

pl,

I almost was. For years I thought I would become a Maryknoll missionary priest. I am aware that period made a significant impression on my personality. Very astute of you to sense that.

Fred

TTG,

The IRS is auditing Trump. What are they going to dispute, depreciation expenses on billion dollar pieces of real estate and how that should be amortized to offset operating expenses of the same properties? Are the NYT reporters tax accountants, as I don't see any quoted in any of the related stories?

Eric Newhill

TTG,
My understanding is that Trump was carrying forward substantial losses from his casino biz; losses that offset taxes owed on profits made in future years. Standard stuff if that is what is was.

You may call Trump a lousy business man, or whatever you want. All I know is that the business I work in and my personal finances improved greatly in the Trump economy. I couldn't care less what he did with his taxes or women. I merely want a pro-American set of policies that includes removal of onerous regulations that stifle business. Obama told me to get used to anemic economic growth and continued the sell-out of our country to China and others while fomenting expensive stupid wars. Trump said the hell with all of that and forged ahead to a record breaking economy. That's what many of us want from govt; less of it screwing things up and less of it generally.

Last I checked the President is not a religious figure nor is sainthood a requirement for the job.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

My Photo

October 2020

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Blog powered by Typepad