A bunch of federal government workers stayed home yesterday, but enough showed up to try to keep some 90-year olds off the grounds of the World War II memorial in Washington. They will try to stand up to the guys in wheelchairs again today. That must be one of those essential government functions.
Today’s shutdown roundup:
Janet Novack, Federal Government Begins First Shutdown In 17 Years
Joseph Thorndike, The GOP Is Right About One Thing: Ditch the Medical Device Tax (Tax Analysts Blog):
Narrow excise taxes — even when somehow correlated with special benefits — are not a good way to fund major social programs. Broad programs deserve broad taxes.
True. But the political magic behind ACA was the idea of a “free” mass welfare benefit — free to you, anyway, because some rich guy gets the tab. But as Joseph has pointed out, the rich guy isn’t buying.
Russ Fox, The Government Shutdown and Taxes
Jason Dinesen, Life After DOMA: Audits of Prior-Year Returns. Jason explains how audits work for amended returns of same-sex married couples.
William Perez, How Social Security Benefits are Taxed by State
It is not implausible that the taxpayers paid more than $2,052 for the support of the wife’s mother. Certainly during the time when she was living with them, a portion of the costs of maintaining the taxpayers’ residence constituted support of the wife’s mother. But apparently the taxpayers did not offer any evidence of those costs.
It’s up to the taxpayer to keep the records needed to support your tax return.
TaxProf, Supreme Court Grants Cert. to Decide Whether Severance Pay Is Subject to Payroll Tax. Is being paid to go away taxed the same way as being paid to work?
Peter Reilly, Court Rules Against Slots Playing As A Business
Americans: secrecy is a weak tax planning strategy; stop using it.
What seemed like a good idea 10 years ago has now compounded itself into a seemingly intractable dilemma. I know this because people tell me so every day.
Start looking for what is true, not what you want to be true. When you hear the answer, accept it. Swallow and digest the big chunks of truth.
In other words, there is no Tax Fairy
Jack Townsend, Article on DOJ’s Swiss Bank Initiative
Keith Fogg, Representing Clients in Tax Court (Procedurally Taxing)
Robert D. Flach, SOME REMINDERS
News from the profession. BREAKING: Commas To Be Added to the CPA Exam (Going Concern). “We are adding a comma to the calculator on the CPA Exam. The comma is meant for large numbers such as 1,000 and above to make them easier to read.” Calculators. With commas. In my day when we took the exam, we had “fingers.”