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Aug 09 2013

Taxes

I have a uncle who lives there.

No, I’m talking about taxes, money, dollars.

That’s where he lives.  Dollars, Taxes.

Corporate sell-outs exploit a secret new gimmick

By David Sirota, Salon

Wednesday, Jul 31, 2013 4:33 PM UTC

As The Hill reports, the U.S. Senate’s “top tax writers have promised their colleagues 50 years worth of secrecy in exchange for suggestions on what deductions and credits to preserve” in a tax “reform” bill that aims to overhaul the tax code from scratch. The system, reports the newspaper, allows only 10 congressional staff members to have “direct access to a senator’s written suggestions” and “each submission will be given its own ID number and be kept on password-protected servers, with printed versions kept in locked safes” in the National Archives until the end of 2064.



(C)onsider the career of one of the architects of this scheme, Max Baucus.

The retiring Montana senator is the senior Democrat on the tax-writing Senate Finance Committee. In that position, he hasn’t used his power to rid the tax code of corporate-written loopholes, subsidies and handouts – the public record shows that he has used his power to riddle the tax code with those expensive giveaways. In exchange for embedding those handouts in the tax code, Baucus has been rewarded handsomely with campaign cash to the point where he has been famously labeled “K Street’s Favorite Senator.” That label is particularly appropriate considering a recent dispatch from the New York Times showing that “no other lawmaker on Capitol Hill has such a sizable constellation of former aides working as tax lobbyists.”

In light of such a record, the notion that Baucus has built the anonymous submission system in order to help challenge K Street is, in a word, absurd. Having spent so much political capital enriching his corporate donors and lobbyists at the expense of taxpayers, he is retiring with one last gift to those benefactors – a secrecy system designed to let them rewrite the tax code from scratch in a way that most serves their interests.

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