Immediately, some began to assert that Baucus' announcement meant the end of tax reform. Pardon me if I differ, but if anything, it probably helps the tax reform effort a bit by concentrating Baucus more on it.
With the economy showing signs of recovery, it's high time that our federal lawmakers move beyond these self-induced crises and begin to talk about tax reform that can help taxpayers move forward with a clear understanding of how the tax code works and how much they owe.
How can such a good and timely idea remain so obscure at a time like this? Perhaps Speaker Boehner and the president, in an effort to give something to everyone, should include something along these lines in their Grand Bargain next week.
At first glance it appears that the investor who owns a rental house or apartment building pays the property tax on it, but this is only nominally true. Who really pays the tax in this case? Clearly it is the renter.
For decades we've heard about CEOs who garner more in a day than their average employee earns in a year. The sad fact is our current tax code encourages these runaway pay packages -- and even subsidizes the excess.
Is that Mitt's fault or Congress's fault? If I had Mitt's money, I would be looking for every tax advantage that Congress has to offer. If I were a financial adviser to Mitt Romney, I would be helping him find those tax advantages. Just like any other good adviser would do.
State tax auditors are being told to shake down local businesses to generate revenue. And while big businesses have internal tax specialists who can fight unjustified assessments, small businesses often have no choice but to pay since the cost to them of fighting back is so high.
Instead of making our tax laws competitive, President Obama continues the tax benefit to off-shore or get rid of jobs. Instead of enforcing our trade laws, like he is sworn to do, the president ignores them.
The plan isn't going into effect until 2013. Think you're tired of TV ads and screaming folks at town hall meetings now? Picture a more local version of that for the next four years -- not a pretty sight.