Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Millionaires Aren't Stupid

Pick on them and they move out of state. Says the Wall Street Journal:

Maryland couldn't balance its budget last year, so the state tried to close the shortfall by fleecing the wealthy. Politicians in Annapolis created a millionaire tax bracket, raising the top marginal income-tax rate to 6.25%. And because cities such as Baltimore and Bethesda also impose income taxes, the state-local tax rate can go as high as 9.45%. . . .One year later . . . one-third of the millionaires have disappeared from Maryland tax rolls. In 2008 roughly 3,000 million-dollar income tax returns were filed by the end of April. This year there were 2,000. . . . On those missing returns, the government collects 6.25% of nothing. Instead of the state coffers gaining the extra $106 million the politicians predicted, millionaires paid $100 million less in taxes than they did last year -- even at higher rates.

So Maryland is $206 million behind in estimated revenue from the special millionaire tax. Of course, correlation does not mean causation. Some of the 1,000 in that bracket may only have been in that bracket temporarily because of one time capital gains and many probably have dropped out of that bracket due to the economy.

My guess? Many of them are folks who own vacation condos in Florida, which has no state income tax, or second homes on a beach, lake, or golf course in Virginia or the Carolinas--all of which have lower state tax burdens than Maryland. These people just changed residency.

Of course, the Maryland Mistake is compounded by the federal alternative minimum tax. The AMT limits the amount of deductions taxpayers in these high tax brackets can take. Thus in high tax states like Maryland, New Jersey, and New York, folks pay the onerous state taxes and then can't fully deduct them on their federal income tax returns. Double whammy.

Don't be whiney babies, you say--they're rich so they can afford it. Fine. They just won't be affording it in Maryland any more. They'll go to Virginia or Florida or Texas where they can afford it a little easier. So where does that leave Maryland? And . . . where does that leave VA, FLA, and Texas?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

North Koreans

This wins the prize for Best Blog Post Title for this week:

If John Bolton writes a column predicting that I win a hundred million dollars, I’ll split it with him

A week ago, former US Ambassador to the UN Bolton predicted in the NY Times that North Korea was preparing to test another nuke. Personally, I can't put this on Barry O'B bc. the North Koreans are crazy. How do you deal with that?

Who're also crazy are the Lefties who attacked Bolton for his prediction. My guess is that even today they are refusing to eat the crow.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Solution to the Gitmo Problem

All that rancor between Cheney and Barry O'B last week. It suddenly struck me: let's just re-name it Tuantanamo? Titmo.

It worked with Congressional pork which is now "investment" and new taxes which are now called "revenues". Liberals have become "progressives". Global warming is now "climate change"--something that everyone knows we need to work to prevent. Bush's War on Terror has morphed into the "Overseas Contingency Operation". Illegal aliens are now "undocumented" something-or-others.

Think of the wrench this new name would throw into the terrorist recruiters' game plans. It used to be all that the recruiter had to say was, "Hey, Abdullah, do you want to blow up some Americans? They are evil: they pour water up our Muslim brothers' noses. They play loud music to keep them up late at night and lock them in boxes with caterpillars. It all happens at Gitmo. Let's blow up some Americans and they will close Gitmo and our Muslim brothers will stop being tortured." The Abdullahs of the world evidently have been jumping all over that.

But if Guantanamo were re-named Tuantanamo, when the terrorist recruiters mention these abominations, the Abdullahs of the world will reply, "Get out of here: there is no Gitmo any more. There's been change in Washington. Gitmo has been closed."

Replies the recruiter, "Don't believe those American dogs! Titmo is the same thing as Gitmo, they just changed the name! Don't you see? They're still the same Muslim-torturing, Kuran-debasing, Bush-Cheney respecting, Infidels that they've always been."

"Go find some other sucker, Mr. Terrorist Recruiter, the Americans are nice now. There has been Change. I feel the Change and I feel better. I'm down with the new administration."

If we re-named it we wouldn't have to move anyone anywhere. We wouldn't have to spend $80 million to tear down the facility that cost $200 million to build.

And besides, Titmo sounds much nicer than Gitmo. It's softer, warmer. It makes you want to hug it, snuggle it, cuddle and nuzzle it. Who would ever have a problem with spending time in Titmo?


George came back from college and turned me into a hockey fan. Tho, probably not this bad. Yet. . . .


Did he or didn't he? That is the question.

Maryland Conservatarian: Robert Gibbs Refines Barack Obama's Resume

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hummer's for sale

I don't mean "hummers for sale"--evidently that's what Craig's list is for. Hummer's for sale--with an apostrophe. The whole division of GM. For a cool $200 million it could be yours.

That's just two times what we've reportedly pledged to help rebuild Gaza. That's one thirtieth of what GM lost in the first three months of this year alone. Don't think $200 mil. will solve the prob, GM.

Maybe Tata Motors (ticker symbol TTM) will buy Hummer. Wouldn't that be cool to build both the Nano and the Hummer?

What are the chances that more good money will be thrown after bad to preserve those UAW jobs, UAW campaign contributions, UAW Democratic votes?

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Mujahideen ate the zoo animals

The headline here reads that the Afghanis quarantined a pig bc. of the swine flu panic. But read on, McDuff. The most interesting part of the article: they ate the bunnies in the zoo! One dastardly Muslim fighter grenaded a poor defenseless lion leaving him (the lion that is) blind and toothless.
Mujahideen fighters then ate the deer and rabbits and shot dead the zoo's sole elephant. Shells shattered the aquarium.

One fighter climbed into the lion enclosure but was immediately killed by Marjan, the zoo's most famous inhabitant. The man's brother returned the next day and lobbed a hand grenade at the lion leaving him toothless and blind.

Savages. (Tho, I would like to think that one of my brothers would grenade any zoo animal that ate me.)

I got the picture here where there is also a good definition of Mujahideen.