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taxes

Donald Trump did not sell his business when he took office, nor did he give it away. By holding onto his empire, he launched an unprecedented experiment: What happens to a multi-billion-dollar business when its leader ascends to the presidency of the United States? And more importantly, what happens to the United States?

Upon the bombshell of Trump’s taxes, journalist Dan Alexander’s new book, "White House, Inc.," lasers in on a five-year period from Trump’s first days on the campaign trail in 2015 to the ramp up of his reelection bid in 2020. For the first time, readers can see how much money is flowing into Trump’s coffers, how much of that turns into profit for the president, and what it all means for American democracy.

Dan Alexander is a senior editor at Forbes, where he leads the magazine's coverage of Donald Trump.

9/29/20 Panel

Sep 29, 2020

    The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, investigative journalist and UAlbany adjunct professor Rosemary Armao, political consultant and lobbyist Libby Post, and former Associate Editor of The Times Union Mike Spain.

9/28/20 Panel

Sep 28, 2020

      The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are UAlbany Lecturer in Africana Studies Jennifer Burns, Bard Center for Civic Engagement Senior Fellow and Dean of the School of Continuing Education at the American University Cairo Jim Ketterer, and Vice President for Editorial Development at the New York Press Association Judy Patrick.

For a portion of the show, we are joined by Pulitzer Prize winning investigative journalist and author, David Cay Johnston. 

Andrew Whitby is a data scientist who works on innovation, growth and development. He studied economics and computer science at the University of Queensland and received a PhD in econometrics from the University of Oxford, where he was an Oxford-Australia–James Fairfax scholar.

In "The Sum of the People," Whitby traces the remarkable history of the census, from ancient China and the Roman Empire, through revolutionary America and Nazi-occupied Europe, to the steps of the Supreme Court. arent -- may offer the seeds of an alternative.

Lawmakers: Close NY Budget Gap With Stock Tax

Dec 14, 2019
New York State Capitol
Karen DeWitt

New York is facing a $6 billion budget deficit, mainly due to an increase in spending on Medicaid, and Governor Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers are trying to come up with ideas on how to close it. One idea gaining support among some Democrats in the legislature is reinstating a decades old stock transfer tax changed during the Reagan era that its sponsor says could net the state billions of dollars a year. 

Gilbert M. Gaul has twice won the Pulitzer Prize and has been shortlisted for the Pulitzer four other times. For more than thirty-five years, he worked as an investigative journalist for The Washington Post, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and other newspapers. He has reported on non-profit organizations, the business of college sports, homeland security, the black market for prescription drugs, and problems in the Medicare program.

In his new book "The Geography of Risk: Epic Storms, Rising Seas, and the Cost of America's Coasts," Gaul considers this: Five of the most expensive hurricanes in history have made landfall since 2005: Katrina ($160 billion), Ike ($40 billion), Sandy ($72 billion), Harvey ($125 billion), and Maria ($90 billion). With more property than ever in harm’s way, and the planet and oceans warming dangerously, it won’t be long before we see a $250 billion hurricane.

Why?

Because Americans have built $3 trillion worth of property in some of the riskiest places on earth: barrier islands and coastal floodplains. And they have been encouraged to do so by what Gaul reveals to be a confounding array of federal subsidies, tax breaks, low-interest loans, grants, and government flood insurance that shift the risk of life at the beach from private investors to public taxpayers, radically distorting common notions of risk.

Democrats are in agreement that State and Local Tax deduction changes are bad for New York State.

In today’s Congressional Corner, New York Senator Chuck Schumer begins his series of conversations with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

IRS

Tax filing season is upon us. Here to answer your questions are Jim Cole and Judy Cahee, tax partners at BST & Co. WAMC's Ray Graf hosts.

Bryan Griffin: Lines And Where To Draw Them

Feb 6, 2019

Within the last two weeks, three Democrats in Congress have suggested tax rates on the wealthy as high as 70, 77 and even 90 percent.

IRS

As the end of 2018 draws near, many financial advisors say it's as good a time as any to consider your tax filings for the year. Here to answer your questions are Jim Cole and Judy Cahee, tax partners at BST & Co., and Thomas Brockley, senior vice president at RBC Wealth Management. WAMC's Ray Graf hosts.

Social Security Administration/Public Domain

The Vermont Legislature passed a bill this session that eliminates the state taxation of Social Security benefits.  In Montpelier today, Governor Phil Scott was joined by agency representatives and the AARP to explain how the move will benefit Vermonters.

Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy
CT.gov

Democratic Governor Dannel Malloy has issued his second veto so far this year.

In December of 2017, President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Despite the sweeping changes it has enacted, the new act still fails to fully address the issues that have plagued our tax code for decades. We know we need a fairer and more efficient tax code, but what exactly does this look like? And how do we achieve the necessary changes?

Veteran correspondent and bestselling author T. R. Reid travels the world in order to find out what makes for good taxation and brings that knowledge home in his new book, "A Fine Mess: A Global Quest for a Simpler, Fairer, and More Efficient Tax System."

Flickr

Do you have questions about your taxes? Jim Daniels, a manager director with UHY Advisors NY, Inc., joins WAMC's Brian Shields to answer your questions. Daniels is a licensed CPA and attorney.

A lot of questions accompany tax season.

In today’s Congressional Corner, New York Congressman Paul Tonko, a Democrat from the 20th district, concludes his conversation with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

Jake Bernstein was a senior reporter on the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists team that broke the Panama Papers story. In 2017, the project won the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting. Bernstein earned his first Pulitzer Prize in 2011 for National Reporting, for coverage of the financial crisis.

In "Secrecy World," Bernstein explores this shadow economy and how it evolved, drawing on millions of leaked documents from the files of the Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca ― a trove now known as the Panama Papers ― as well as other journalistic and government investigations. Bernstein shows how shell companies operate, how they allow the super-wealthy and celebrities to escape taxes, and how they provide cover for illicit activities on a massive scale by crime bosses and corrupt politicians across the globe.

Donkey Hotey/Flickr

With the U.S. undergoing a massive overhaul of its tax code in 2018, ripple effects are being felt in local town halls across the Northeast before the New Year. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed an emergency executive order allowing localities across the state to collect  property taxes early, so people can claim the soon-to-disappear state and local tax deduction. Property owners have been flooding town and county offices to pay the taxes in advance.  But in some rural areas, going to the tax collector’s office may not be an option.

Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty

The American tax system is about to undergo a major overhaul.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Connecticut Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty speaks with WAMC’s Alan Chartock. This conversation was recorded minutes before final votes in the House.

What does health care have to do with tax cuts?

In today’s Congressional Corner, Vermont Representative Peter Welch speaks with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

The tax overhaul plan proposed by President Trump and now being considered in Congress would end the deduction on federal income tax forms for state and local property taxes. Governor Andrew Cuomo says it would disproportionately harm New Yorkers, where property taxes are among the highest in the nation, and he’s taken opportunities at public events recently to make the case against the plan.

President Trump’s first budget proposal made for tough reading for many communities.

In today’s Congressional Corner, WAMC’s Alan Chartock concludes his conversation with Connecticut representative Joe Courtney, a Democrat from the 2nd district.

Donkey Hotey/Flickr

The Vermont Legislature's Joint Fiscal Office says the state is poised to bring in an addition $8 million with retail giant Amazon agreeing to collect and remit sales tax.

Why is America living in an age of profound and widening economic inequality? Why have even modest attempts to address climate change been defeated again and again? Why do hedge-fund billionaires pay a far lower tax rate than middle-class workers?

In Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right, Jane Mayer illuminates the history of an elite cadre of plutocrats—headed by the Kochs, the Scaifes, the Olins, and the Bradleys—who have bankrolled a systematic plan to fundamentally alter the American political system.

The book is now available in paperback with a new preface that discusses the results of the most recent election and Donald Trump's victory, and how, despite much discussion to the contrary, this was a huge victory for the billionaires who have been pouring money in the American political system.

Taxes have been one of the campaign’s biggest issues.

In today’s Congressional Corner, Massachusetts Congressman Richard Neal concludes his discussion with WAMC’s Alan Chartock.

Donkey Hotey/Flickr

Errors in some software, including TurboTax, could result in Vermont charging interest and penalties if taxpayers don't file amended returns by June 30.

  Runaway inequality is now America’s most critical economic fact of life. In 1970, the ratio of pay between the top 100 CEOs and the average worker was 45 to 1. Today it is a shocking 829 to one! During that time a new economic philosophy set in that cut taxes, deregulated finance, and trimmed social spending. Those policies set in motion a process that greatly expanded the power of financial interests to accelerate inequality. But how exactly does that happen?

In Runaway Inequality, Les Leopold explains the process by which corporation after corporation falls victim to systematic wealth extraction by banks, private equity firms, and hedge funds. It reveals how financial strip-mining puts enormous downward pressure on jobs, wages, benefits, and working conditions, while boosting the incomes of financial elites.

Calita Kabir/Flickr

Tax officials in New York state say they have stopped nearly 240,000 false tax refunds worth $400 million this tax season.

Officials in Vermont towns along the Deerfield and Connecticut rivers are worrying about what would happen to local tax revenues if power dams are purchased by the state of Vermont.

Donkey Hotey/Flickr

The state of Vermont had an unexpected, if temporary, $16.3 million windfall in February, mostly due to a delay in issuing income tax refunds due to concerns about fraud.

  Why is America living in an age of profound economic inequality? Why, despite the desperate need to address climate change, have even modest environmental efforts been defeated again and again? Why have protections for employees been decimated? Why do hedge-fund billionaires pay a far lower tax rate than middle-class workers?

The conventional answer is that a popular uprising against “big government” led to the ascendancy of a broad-based conservative movement. But Jane Mayer shows in her book, Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right, a network of exceedingly wealthy people with extreme libertarian views bankrolled a systematic, step-by-step plan to fundamentally alter the American political system.

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