Archive for Friday, May 18, 2012

Latest tax cut proposal drives state budget to major shortfalls, according to projection

May 18, 2012


— The proposed tax-cutting bill now under consideration by the Legislature would lead to significant budget shortfalls under certain scenarios, according to a new state projection obtained by the Lawrence Journal-World.

Up until now, Gov. Sam Brownback's administration and supporters of the latest tax cut proposal have said that even with the tax cuts, the state budget would maintain positive balances in future years. The proposed tax package would reduce personal income tax rates and phase out taxes on non-wage income of businesses.

But if the tax cuts were enacted, and legislators wanted to restore a small portion of recent cuts to schools, that would produce a negative ending balance of $408 million by 2018, according to the projection put together by the Kansas Legislative Research Department. The projection was composed at the request of legislators.

In another area of the budget, Brownback has proposed an overhaul of Medicaid, called KanCare, which he said will produce significant savings. But some legislators have doubted that assertion.

If the state fails to realize savings from implementation of KanCare, the state would have a negative ending balance of $895 million in less than six years.

Recently, the federal government has indicated it may take action against the state because of lengthy waiting lists for services for the physically disabled. If the state were to eliminate those waiting lists, the negative ending balance under the tax cut proposal would be $256 million in 2018.

Combing those three scenarios — an increase in school funding, the failure to realize savings from KanCare and eliminating the waiting lists — would result in a negative ending balance of more than $1.5 billion by 2018, the projection indicated.

Brownback and his team have said the tax cuts will increase economic activity. The plan is "a compromise that gets Kansas on the path to a pro-growth tax policy that will grow the economy and create jobs," Brownback said.

But opponents say they are concerned the plan will leave the state without the necessary revenue to meet critical services.

"The tax bill is way too large," said state Sen. Tom Holland, D-Baldwin City, and the lead Democrat on tax issues. "This leaves no money for additional services," Holland said. "We're just locking ourselves into major structural deficits," he said.

Brownback has said if the Legislature fails to approve the proposal, he will sign a larger tax cut bill that was sent to him earlier. That bill will produce deficits in the $2.5 billion to $3 billion range by 2018.


Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

If tax cuts created jobs, given all the tax cuts in recent years, we'd be at full employment. Why do Republicans insist on asserting something -- that tax cuts lead to jobs -- which is demonstrably false? And republican voters, why do you continue to believe what Republican politicians say when the clear evidence in front of your eyes -- not enough jobs for workers -- proves otherwise?

Bob_Keeshan 5 years, 9 months ago

Exactly. The state cut hundreds of millions in taxes, all of it in taxes paid only by businesses and corporations, in the 2000's. The state even eliminated "the death tax" in the 2000's, another conservative whipping horse.

Now Il Marrone and his partisans call that "the lost decade" of job creation. Seems like all those tax cuts are being ignored by the media. The Kansas Chamber lobbied incessantly for all of these "job creating" tax cuts, now they too call the 2000's a "lost decade". So they're admitting tax cuts don't create jobs!

Meanwhile, the state increased sales taxes in July, 2010 and immediately started gaining jobs again. At least, using the logic of the right wing that's what happened...

tbaker 5 years, 9 months ago

Spending causes deficits, not tax cuts.

In the 90's, 26 states cut state income tax rates and 14 more slashed corporate tax rates. The 10 states that cut taxes the most created about twice as many new jobs and enjoyed about 27% more income growth than the 10 states that raised taxes the most. (Wall Street Journal)

For the committed left, there is only one organizing idea: government cannot be cut; it can only grow or stay at its current size. For this to work, liberals must attack the idea that a dollar in the hands of the people who worked for an earned the money in the first place is a bad thing; that government spending the money a much wiser choice. These are the same people who insist that the federal "stimulus" failed only because it was too small and think we need another one.

When was the last time we saw any reporting on just exactly what are the people getting for these essential services? We assume all is well and the only thing we need is continued funding. Is this true? Are there better, faster, cheaper ways for the private sector to provide these services? Who are these people that depend on these things? Should they be getting these services at working people's expense? If so, are they getting what was promised? Are the tax payers getting their money's worth? What exactly is the return on investment? Since government-provided services have no feed-back mechanism like the free-market does for service providers, how do we know the essential service is even needed?

We have plenty of dogma, where is the data? What makes someting an essential service the state should / must pay for?

Brian Laird 5 years, 9 months ago

You cited WSJ for your data, but I was unable to find an article using Google and the data you gave. Could you put in a link to the article or at least a date of publication? That would be helpful.

jhawkinsf 5 years, 9 months ago

I find it interesting that while we here are talking about tax cuts creating a budget deficit, California has a very high tax burden and they currently have a huge budget deficit. Perhaps the correlation between the two that seems so obvious is in fact less obvious than it seems.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Your assumptions about California don't exactly fit with the data. See

"California takes about 4.7% of what a business produces in taxes — which happens to be the national average. The government take is higher in Alaska (13.8%), New York (5.5%) and Florida (5.3%). Even Texas, known for rolling out the red carpet for business, pocketed more than California — 4.9%."

jhawkinsf 5 years, 9 months ago

I lived in and owned businesses in California for many years. "Taxes" come in many shapes and sizes. As an example, because of Prop. 13 many years ago, certain taxes are frozen in place. So how does the government (at the level of state AND county AND city) respond. They raise fees. Every business needs to comply with regulatory fees. Not only do they go up, but they expand in numbers. I recall the following situation. The state deemed it a wise thing for all businesses that serve food to attend a food handlers course. Maybe that makes sense, maybe not. But every business then had to send owners, managers, employees to an 8 hour course. Every business had to pay to take that course and upon completion, pay for a food handlers license. Is this a tax? Technically, no. I recall further a certain video store that sold microwavable popcorn was required to send someone from each store. This now bankrupt chain sent how many employees, managers, etc. BTW- at least half of the course dealt with how to detect parasites in sushi. I wonder how much benefit an employee of McDonalds or Blockbuster Video got from that.

Orwell 5 years, 9 months ago

Simplistic is not the same thing as obvious. Apple ≠ orange.

Mel Wedermyer 5 years, 9 months ago

Kansas is headed to the crapper with this "Great leadership". Whatever happened to moderation. Far Right and Far Left politicians need to think of the people not themselves. Just do your job.

Orwell 5 years, 9 months ago

The extremist Republicans are doing everything they can (gerrymandering, vote suppression, bogus claims, voodoo economics, SuperPacs) to get rid of the moderates in their own party. There hasn't been anyone "Far Left" in state government since before Halley's Comet, unless you count those falsely labeled by the same extremists – and to them, if you're not Far Right you're Far Left.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Businesses hire new workers when demand for their services / products require it. Without demand for a businesses services or products, or even the reasonable projection of growth in demand, no business is in a position to hire more people.

So the question must be: how do you increase demand? Republicans have no answer.

We have tried "supply side" economics for 40 years and those policies have given us high unemployment and stagnant earnings for the middle class. It's time to admit our mistakes and return to the kind of bipartisan economic policies that fueled mid-century Amrican growth and prosperity. Read up on the tax code under Eisenhower to see how far we've gotten away from sound tax policy.

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

Just scrap it. There is absolutely nothing wrong with old Kansas tax system except property taxes are too high.

Richard Payton 5 years, 9 months ago

I thought these wealthy corporations needed workers. More workers needed for Kansas that are willing to pay the taxes for corporations. Is this the message we want to send?

Cant_have_it_both_ways 5 years, 9 months ago

Could it be that the reason most of you in here don't have anything is because you just don't understand how things work?

Cutting taxes is a very good thing, and the absolute best thing to spur the economy, which in turn, creates job opportunities.

The problem is the spending everywhere from the State to your kitchen table. The secondary problem is the very over bloated entitlement system.

A combination of cutting taxes, cutting spending, and cutting entitlements will start not only the State but your household into a period of economic growth.

Bob_Keeshan 5 years, 9 months ago

The state cut taxes almost every year in the 2000's. According to your dear leader, it did not spur the economy.

The state raised taxes in July, 2010. The economic recovery of the state loosely corresponds with that time period.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

This is flatly wrong, and the proof is in front of your eyes. Decades of tax cuts, and the highest unemployment in decades.

There is no growth without demand, and tax cuts for businesses and the already-wealthy increase nothing but profits. Tax cuts do not increase demand. More employed consumers create demand, since consumers then have money from their jobs to buy products and services from businesses, which in turn is the only conditions under which businesses can afford to bring on more employees, thus further fueling growth.

See Ford's increasing his workers' pay so they could afford to buy Ford cars for the most obvious and simple demonstration of the idea.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

That your comment begins with the laughably juvenile and unproven assertion that "most of you in here don't have anything" removes it from any serious, adult, civic consideration.

What it shows is that what passes for economic analysis from Can't_have_it is, in reality, simply veiled prejudices about people, the assumption that those of us who stand with the Founding Fathers in favor of a strong national government empowered to promote the general welfare of we the people are somehow lazy freeloaders.

Laughable, and sad that this is what passes for civic conversation in Cant's comments.

tbaker 5 years, 9 months ago

The founding fathers were most definately NOT in favor of a strong national government. The constitution “enumerates” powers to the federal government. This means to specify – to make very clear ONLY what is enumerated can be done. The constitution’s two main functions were to strictly limit the scope of the federal government, and to ensure its primary function was to protect the liberty of American citizens. The singular expression of liberty is personal property rights, the ability of a person to keep what they earned. "Promote the general welfare" does not mean grow the government and spend money on just about anything you can think of. It is part of the preamble to the constitution and is not an enumerated power.

"With respect to the two words 'general welfare' [in the U.S. Constitution], I have always regarded them as qualified by the detail of powers connected with them. To take them in a literal and unlimited sense would be a metamorphosis of the Constitution into a character which there is a host of proofs was not contemplated by its creators. If the words obtained so readily a place in the 'Articles of Confederation', and received so little notice in their admission into the present Constitution, and retained for so long a time a silent place in both, the fairest explanation is, that the words, in the alternative of meaning nothing or meaning everything, had the former meaning taken for granted." - James Madison, in a letter to James Robertson

Still stand with the founders?

jafs 5 years, 9 months ago

The phrase is also found in Article 1, Section 8 of the constitution.

Power to levy taxes, and provide for the general welfare.

It's valid to discuss and debate the scope and meaning of the term, but not to deny that it's in the constitution itself.

tbaker 5 years, 9 months ago

"Provide for" vice "promote the" is in section 8.

As I said, the constitution's purpose was to LIMIT the scope of federal government. The "general welfare" wording has been used to expand it, as the founders feared would happen. Anything could be conceived as being in the "general welafre" thus making the whole point of enumerating powers moot. To wit:

"They are not to do anything they please to provide for the general welfare, but only to lay taxes for that purpose. To consider the latter phrase not as describing the purpose of the first, but as giving a distinct and independent power to do any act they please which might be for the good of the Union, would render all the preceding and subsequent enumerations of power completely useless. It would reduce the whole instrument to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and, as they would be the sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please... Certainly no such universal power was meant to be given them. It was intended to lace them up straitly within the enumerated powers and those without which, as means, these powers could not be carried into effect." --Thomas Jefferson: Opinion on National Bank, 1791. ME 3:148

jafs 5 years, 9 months ago

That's a rather difficult argument to understand.

It makes no sense to say that we're only supposed to collect taxes for the general welfare, but not spend tax revenue on programs to that end. If we only collect them, and don't spend them, how does that provide for the general welfare of anybody?

I'm guessing that it's an opinion about a "National Bank" and he's opposing that idea.

Since that's not what we're discussing, it seems a bit irrelevant.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Yep I do. How can you assert that the founders did not want a strong national government when they scrapped the articles of confederation in favor of a national government with more power? The decision of how much to tax and what to spend are purely political questions, and there is nothing in the constitution to suggest that taxing and spending for the general good is illegal or wrong. It's purely a question of how much and on what, and reasonable people can reasonably debate that without recourse to unethical moves.

Also, your use of "Promote the general welfare" does not mean grow the government and spend money on just about anything you can think of" is an unethical rhetorical move since no one, certainly not I, is suggesting that.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Here's the Constitution itself: ""The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States."

No mention is made of what amount can or can't be raised, nor what exactly "common defense and general welfare" mean. That is left to the polity to decide.

mcallaigh 5 years, 9 months ago

Is this the part where you explain why the Reagan cut to the top tax rate was followed by unemployment numbers greater than Obama's. Or is this the part where you explain why NOT investing produces growth.

Cutting, cutting, cutting = NOT INVESTING

I agree we absolutely need to deal with debt. But no doctor will advise losing weight by starvation.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Rather than so-called tax relief, the better course would be to increase workers'/consumers' income, which has stagnated over the last decades. In a consumer economy, if consumers have no money, they cannot fuel economic growth.

Workers / consumers are, and always have been, the "job creators," since it is only increased demand that ever fuels economic growth.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 9 months ago

A little META data for your consideration:

Graphic inspired by Jennifer Granholm's Politico Opinion piece:

Grenholm got her information from this Bloomberg research piece:

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

What's Brownback's next scheme going to look like? Let me guess, the state will sell out to Kochs and the poor and middle class have to write checks to them to rent a spot to live. It can only get crazier from here on, folks. Welcome to serfdom circa 2012!

kansanjayhawk 5 years, 9 months ago

Certainly no more crazy than passing a national healthcare bill no one had read. Certainly no different than too big to fail bailouts! Tax relief in Kansas should be a bipartisan issue we simply need a system here that help the private sector and is not so destructive to the creation of jobs.

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

next time toss in a "socialist" or two. It really adds to the impact.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Businesses hire only when demand for their products or services makes economic sense. With no demand, there will never be more jobs, no matter how far you cut businesses taxes. All that will happen is the business will pocket the tax cut and do nothing with it — effectively removing capital from the economy.

It's not that hard to see that without increase in demand, businesses never will (and never should) hire more people. What would those new workers do if there is no growing need for the company's services or product?

Tax cuts don't solve the demand problem, no matter how hard you try to believe it.

chootspa 5 years, 9 months ago

His next plan involves mounting a sow's head in the jungle.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 9 months ago

+1 for the "Lord of the Flies" reference.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 9 months ago

+1 as well. Maybe they need a conch shell in the Legislature to pass around when they talk. Think anyone would listen to Piggie now?

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

Food for thought, from the recently non-posted TedTalk: "If the typical American family still got today the same share of income they earned in 1980, they would earn about 25% more and have an astounding $13,000 more a year. Where would the economy be if that were the case?"

The real issue is, of course, that consumers (the demand side of the economics equation) even when employed have generally fared poorly under Republican supply side policies. And our continuing un- and under-employment is clear evidence of that.

kansanjayhawk 5 years, 9 months ago

Just amazing how upset the liberals are because they actually are going to have to give Kansans tax relief. They surely would have loved to make their exit with no tax cut at all...i'm waiting for Senator Holland to offer a plan...hasn't happened yet!

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

first of all, this is a tax shift, not a tax cut. Secondly, the moderate proposal was to cut property taxes. So you're zero for two. Care to strike out?

kansanjayhawk 5 years, 9 months ago

Point is the moderate proposal is not on the table. I'm sure the so-called moderates would love to go home having failed to pass anything. I talked to my moderate Senator and he seemed to agree with me that the Legislature would have left town without acting on a tax cut except for the fact one is now sitting on his desk!

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

You use the phrase "tax relief" as if it were an objective phrase. It is not. It's an ideologically loaded term designed to make people feel they're being robbed by their government.

By employing this phrase, you're doing fools-errand work of people who do not share your interests, however much you might wish they do.

And it's not just "liberals" who think this is a bad idea. Everyone except those to the right of Louis XIV thinks this is a boneheaded move.

larrygin 5 years, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

esteshawk 5 years, 9 months ago

The problem with job creation in Kansas is not the tax structute, but the social structure. Corporations want well educated workers in a solid location where they can lure top execs. In this day and age when workers can live anywhere, Kansas is making a collective fool of itself and re-enforcing every negative stereotype out there. You think tech companies want to move to Ks? Manufacturing is over. How effective were these policies in keeping Boeing in Kansas? Cognitive dissonence is staring Kansas in the face, and half of you don't even know it.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 9 months ago

The funny thing about this: If you read placement magazines and study data not promoted by one side or the other, Kansas has a pretty attractive business and tax climate and a central location. Add a well educated workforce (at least for now) and Kansas can be attractive. Our recent intramural fights over these issues and some others (remember the State Board and the journeys into magical thinking a few years ago?) are hurting this already pretty solid reputation. Sad.

Richard Payton 5 years, 9 months ago

Google just moved to Kansas recently. Do they qualify as a tech company?

Crazy_Larry 5 years, 9 months ago

Google did not move to Kansas City. Kansas City was chosen by Google to be the testbed for a new high-speed fiber-optic internet service.

tomatogrower 5 years, 9 months ago

Don't forget the "fiscally responsible" guys in office now, who are wasting tens of thousands of dollars a day protecting us from a bogey man, because they have no idea of what the words autonomy and US constitution mean, and can't do their real job of budgets and districting maps. I feel so much safer from Sharia law and peace keeping UN troops who want to confiscate my car, oh my. What is that violin I'm hearing, and do I smell smoke? Republican radical conservative: "Just move along. Nothing to see here."

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

if you consider that they aren't passing laws that will cost the State millions in wasted legal fees, maybe this is their way of saving the State money?

Patricia Davis 5 years, 9 months ago

Brownbackistan is not going to a pretty nor a productive place. Who would want to come to Kansas either to invest in a business or even tourism? And a retirement mecca? Bella sera my a$$!

In the spirit of "A Modest Proposal", we left of right wingnuts, should voluntarily go west and do hand to hand combat, taking over the precincts and replacing god's chosen ones with people who love Kansas. People who are willing to compromise for what is best for the people who live and work here. People who care about their children's education, a compassionate safety net, safe roads, clean water and a healthy environment—yes, and a healthy, competitive business environment that is not subsidized by the poor and middle class.

Brownback's slash and burn governing style combined with his non-think voodoo economics will cripple this state for decades. Perhaps forever.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 9 months ago

+1 Remember, Voodoo is just one more religion and this is a faith-based administration.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

What if they fight back?? I wonder who has had the training in the application of violence to political outcomes?

Richard Heckler 5 years, 9 months ago

Now how many jobs have all of the etitlements listed below created? Can we say negative 20 million?

  1. ENTITLEMENT - TABOR is Coming by Grover Norquist and Koch Bros sells out state governments, public schools,SRS services etc etc to private industry = Grab Your Wallets!

  2. ENTITLEMENT - Bailing out The Reagan/Bush Savings and Loan Heist aka home loan scandal sent the economy out the window costing taxpayers many many $$ trillions (Cost taxpayers $1.4 trillion), Plus millions of jobs, loss of retirement plans and loss of medical insurance.

  3. ENTITLEMENT - Bailing out the Bush/Cheney Home Loan Wall Street Bank Fraud cost consumers $ trillions, millions of jobs, loss of retirement plans and loss of medical insurance. Exactly like the Reagan/Bush home loan scam. Déjà vu can we say. Yep seems to be a pattern.

4.ENTITLEMENT - Bush/Cheney implied many financial institutions were at risk instead of only 3? One of the biggest lies perpetrated to American citizens. Where did this money go? Why were some banks forced to take bail out money?

  1. Tax cuts = the ENTITLEMENT program for the wealthy which do nothing to make an economy strong or produce jobs. Tax cuts are a tax increase to others in order to make up the loss in revenue = duped again.

Still A Bad ENTITLEMENT Idea – Bush Tax Cuts aka The ENTITLEMENT program for the wealthy at the expense of the middle class = duped one more time.

wastewatcher 5 years, 9 months ago

Why does the LJW continue to quote LIBERAL LOSER TOM HOLLAND when he was so soundly defeated at the polls. Remember the voters spoke loud and clear and did not like what Holland was offering.. It is time for the LJW to quote reasonable people not yesterdays losers!!!!! l

yourworstnightmare 5 years, 9 months ago

waistwatcher has a point. Democracy is not about listening to minority voices elected by constituents in their districts (losers, in other words).

Democracy is about the majority bullying and dictating its views by strong arm tactics and threats and intimidation.

It is time for all of the losers who do not agree with Brownback and the conservatives to just shut up and clear the way for their agenda.

Cait McKnelly 5 years, 9 months ago

Umm Holland wasn't "soundly defeated in the polls". Brownback won by a slim 10% margin in an election where only a little over half of the registered electorate voted. The truth is, Brownback won with less than a third of the eligible vote. However, I have a feeling if he won with only a 200 vote margin, you would call this a "sound defeat" of his opponent and a "mandate" for the governor.

Alyosha 5 years, 9 months ago

The same reason Fox News continues to employ quitter / VP loser Sarah Palin?

Paul R Getto 5 years, 9 months ago

You are right 33% of the eligible voters cannot be wrong!

Hudson Luce 5 years, 9 months ago

Brownback is a closet anarchist - he's doing everything possible to smash the state! Give the man a black hoody!

yourworstnightmare 5 years, 9 months ago

I agree with much of what has been said. Brownback's and the conservative's plans for Kansas will turn it into an impoverished, uneducated, unemployed state with little or no middle class and no culture or innovation.

The philosophers among them see it differently; that their actions will create a "Randian" paradise, where intelligent and successful "job creators" will be unleashed and freed to build a prosperous, thrifty, productive and innovative society in Kansas. In other words, faith-based economics, voodoo economics.

Let's look at the most "Randian" figures in our state, the Kochs. When they choose to donate money to philanthropic organizations, where do they go? To Kansas? Oh, no. The Kochs choose high-tax, liberal states like Massachusetts and New York for their philanthropy. States that invested in education and business, not attempted to eradicate education and culture as the current crop are trying to do here in Kansas.

The current efforts in Kansas to slash taxes and thus state spending will turn Kansas into an innovation, educational and cultural waste land. A wasteland where no Randian innovator/job creator could be successful even if he or she wanted his or her family to live here.

Geiiga 5 years, 9 months ago

Nope, none.

Brownback's goal is to turn us into Appalachia.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Ever been there?? Portions are not nice not nice at all. Of course it has been under Democratic Party control most of its history.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 9 months ago

Having two or three sources of income is not a bad idea. Why? There are at least 7 reasons to keep in mind.

  1. Mergers
  2. Hostile Takeovers
  3. Leveraged Buyouts
  4. Free Trade Agreements
  5. Reagan/Bush Savings and Loan home loan scandal which killed the economy and cost the USA millions of jobs.
  6. Bush/Cheney Home Loan scandal killed the economy and cost the USA millions of jobs
  7. Gov Sam Brownback because he has brought the above beltway thinking to Kansas aka Reaganomics = Wreckanomics.

All of above ultimately translate into millions upon millions upon millions of USA job losses.

If one has the dollars becoming a career student is as respectable as any other job. Yes stay in school to avoid the depression associated with no jobs available to college grads.

Crazy_Larry 5 years, 9 months ago

Cutting taxes for the rich does not build a strong economy. If it did, we'd be drowning in jobs right now. Nick Hanauer is an American entrepreneur and venture capitalist.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Well there is the option of cutting services and avoiding deficits. Since services appear to go to one set of citizens who generally pay little in taxes and much less so to the set of citizens that pay significant taxes maybe the latter are not bothered by the cuts??

Tax policy is a matter for the legislature and is in the end determined by those who show up at the polls. In reality if the courts were to rule again that more taxes are required for schools the legislature and governor could just ignor the ruling - they are independent and co-equal partners in government.

Seems to me there are a lot of assumptions in this space not supported by reality starting with the perception that one group has the right to take ever increasing resources from another group and award them to a third group without any real input from those paying the bills

Bob_Keeshan 5 years, 9 months ago

Which of your three groups has all the lobbyists at the statehouse, and has for years? Those groups aren't there to stop the government from spending money, they are there to have the government spend money on them.

Your propaganda-fueled myth about a set of citizens who pay little in taxes getting all the services doesn't match up with reality. Lobbyists aren't cheap, and they don't get paid to stop spending. They get paid to increase spending.

Hudson Luce 5 years, 9 months ago

Personally, I'm in favor of Brownback's plan to abolish the state income tax, because then - even if property and sales taxes go up to make up for the shortfall - voters will have more control in saying where those taxes go. It's a devolution of state power to localities - and I'm all for it.

esteshawk 5 years, 9 months ago

You must not live in a poor or extremely rural county.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

It is funny that it seems like many of the rural and poor counties vote Republican???

JackMcKee 5 years, 9 months ago

That's funny. I don't feel like I have any control over my property or sales taxes. It seems like an increase is never voted down.

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

Brownback's economic activity, working families taxes being diverted from state services, infrastructure maintenance and flying over to the Koch mansion, being used for landscaping and padding their portfolios.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Exactly how does that work?? The taxes for working familes decline also. Perhaps it is the possibility that services to non working non tax paying people may be cut that excites you?

Frankly the difference in income to Mr Koch would be chump change - he could care less. The people benefiting mostly from this are small business owners - the people who generate most jobs and who for the most part are not really rich.

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

Did you read the article? The finances are not a matter of faith. It is real money. If the wild tax cuts for the wealthy were designed to generate jobs they would be carrot, not some bizarre give away. You might believe in the trickle down miracle, but the thousands suffering while Koch and like increase their wealth by over 300 times, don't share your faith. My God say put pencil to paper, add it up. I am not buying it. Trickle down doesn't work, it is a cheat.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Yes I read the article. I also have read a lot of related things as to intent. The budget for the up coming years shows increases in most catagories. It is the outyeras we need to work!!

nanimwe 5 years, 9 months ago

And don't forget that Brownback and the far right of the legislature are now taking money out of the Kansas Bioscience Authority. So that avenue of industry and job creation will very soon be defunct.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Educate me. I thought those cuts were management related???

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

The sum of all above??

Government spending creates jobs! Private Spending is selfish Taxes are good - the more for government spending

Most state government spending goes either for long term investment (education) a good thing and for social services - bloated and inefficient with little return on investment.

The draft budget forthis year increases spending on education while suggesting management improvements to social services.

I though the notion of tax cuts at the state level was to make Kansas a more attractive location for companies that sell nation wide and internationally. If they move here jobs from elsewhere move here. Kansans get hired to do that work. We spend less on social services. We take in more tax revenue. We buy better education services and attract even more jobs and better paying jobs(instead of most of our college graduates with a degree in demand going elsewhere). This is not a zero sum game where tax cuts go to the rich and nothing goes to anyone else???

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Bob_Keeshan (anonymous) replies… Which of your three groups has all the lobbyists at the statehouse, "

Moderate Responds: Bob you keep making the argument about the poor paying all the taxes. I keep asking for data. You never supply it.

I posted the total tax take (all taxes) on here based on Quicken tax retruns and the poor actually pay nothing except payroll taxes - if they work.

Taxes kick in with a vengence on the upper half of the middle class who by the time they make $100K are paying about 30% in direct taxes.. It is pretty flat after that.

What has that got to do with Brownback? He will reduce the income tax on the upper half of the middle class by maybe a few hundred dollars per year. The big earners already probably do not pay much Kansas income tax (capital gains and the like).. The real winners appear to be small businesses. Is it not Mr. Obama that wants to do the same thing for amall business?

Katara 5 years, 9 months ago

AARP has a strong lobbying arm.

And from the study regarding who pays taxes and who does not, it is senior citizens who are the biggest category of not paying Federal Income tax.

And, of course, none of this bears much in a conversation about State Income tax, particularly in KS since the state does not match the Feds in exemptions and credits.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

This must be important to you.

Actually there are lobbyists as Katara points out representing all sorts of people. There are lobbyists for the schools, there are lobbyists for the disabled, there are lobbyists for the Kock's - the list is endless. Each group even brings in a sobbing client to plead the hardship of whatever.

So what is you fascination with Lobbyists? Absolutely nothing makes an elected official bow to lobbyists.

Answer my question on taxes!!! The article is about taxes. You have made an assertion that I do not believe you can sustain.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

mS k

Katara did you read the article you posted? It did in fact point out that the elderly do enjoy targeted tax deductions. It goes on to point out that it is their inco0me and not there age that drives most of the deductions. I challenge the inclusion of social security in that list as it was taxed going in and only the poorer seniors will generally benefit from that provision.

Of course if you want to make another generational issue let us talk about the largest contribution to people not paying taxes – kids. There are several major provisions that basically eliminate federal income tax payments for those in the lower half of the middle class and when combined with college credits significantly reduce tax liability on the part of some middle class tax payers.

So you support protecting the poor from tax payments if they are young but not old. You demand double taxation for social security recipients but not capital gains beneficiaries and you demand all sorts of tax avoidance for people with children – children that will contribute 300 tons of carbon each to our climate change problem.

Great!!! You are on the right side of all the issues!!

Katara 5 years, 9 months ago

I've read it several times. I have also posted it for you many times before.

It isn't generational talk. It is a fact. Senior citizens make up a good portion of the people who pay no Federal Income tax. And yes, it is their age that gets them most of the deductions. Perhaps you should read the article in full so that you can see for yourself.

Darn those kids. Nothing but trouble, right? Not earning their keep at all. :(

Nevermind that they are future taxpayers and the credits/deductions that their parents receive while raising them are small potatoes compared to the taxes those kids will be paying.

It is pretty funny all the words you attempt to put into my mouth and all with extra punctuation.

Flap Doodle 5 years, 9 months ago

merrill, when was the last time you got thru two whole days without copy/pasting the same twaddle you posted at 11:29 on this thread?

Linda Endicott 5 years, 9 months ago

Probably the same two days you went without commenting on a Merrrill post...

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Sorry Katara but I read it pretty much as you do but have a different understanding of how to intrepret it. I must admit it is not well writen and is confusing but!!!

The majority of people not paying federal income tax are those in the lower half of the middle class and the poor. The fact that some of those may be seniors should be no surprise. The fact that most of them are poor or near poor should be no surprise.

The article is silent on pecentages by age but IRS data and commerce department data reflects that many of our poor are also our seniors. The difference (albeit small) is that while the seniors pay little tax because they have little income the younger poor and near poor pay no tax if they have kids.

So what is your issue? People in the lower half of the middle class pay little or no federal income tax (old or young). Thta is exactly what I have written over and over again. Have you just figured out that despite social security many of our poor and near poor are seniors. Where have you been? Lost in that idelogical bubble you live in? Careful the older geese do not pay federal income tax either.

Katara 5 years, 9 months ago

It is well written and explains the issue very well. I am sorry that you cannot grasp it.

The article is not silent on percentages. It even has both a standard graph AND a pie chart so you can see how it breaks down. Additionally, the article also outlines the age-related tax breaks that seniors get. Working families with kids don't get those.

I am trying to figure out your issue. You are the one who keeps bringing up how almost half of citizens (although that it incorrect as well. If you had actually read the article, you would know that.) pay no taxes. I am not sure why you are bringing up figures regarding Federal Income tax in regards to an article about State Income tax.

Do you not understand that Kansas does not have all the deductions and tax credits that the Feds give? This means that more people are paying state taxes.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

I grasp it pretty well. You and I have very different opinions about a lot of things so maybe the difference is "world view" and not inability to understand???

Both "seniors" and "child based" deductions and credits seems to have proportional numbers involved. They are almost all poor or near poor. The urban institute seems to be just reporting. What is your issue with deductions or credits for poor or near poor seniors? Are you just doing one of your attack the person as opposed to the issue?

As to my issues - see

That is why I oppose the Republican initiative even while feeling compelled to explain it.

Katara 5 years, 9 months ago

No, it isn't about world view when the data is there in the article that you obviously have not read completely.

I don't have an issue with deductions or credits for poor or near poor seniors but thanks for trying to make it seem like that. Just another one of your strawmen you like to set up to knock down.

All your "tax" examples (brought to you by TurboTax!) involve a couple (a teacher married to a policeman) with 2 children. So it really seems more that you have an issue with people who have children who you perceive as getting all the "goodies". I am simply pointing out that your scenarios are inaccurate as they do not represent who is really not paying Federal Income tax.

This article is about KS taxes. Your almost 50% of citizens pay no taxes spiel has no bearing here. KS does not allow all the deductions, exemptions or tax credits that Federal tax law does.

Thus, there are a lot more people paying state taxes.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Katara repeating the same inaccurate statement over and over does not make it right. All three deductions/credits for seniors are means tested after the age test.

Still will not deal with the SS issue will you. For some reason you seem to want to make it sound like seniors are causing the large number of people who do not pay income tax rather than poor pople.

I bet the majority of thiose not paying taxes are "white" So "white people" are causing the tax issue. Katara chill. Your method of advocacy does not help your cause.

As to kansas, that is why I do not agree with Mr. Brownback. Kansas is already a regressive tax state. Making if more so is just plain stupid. I believe I have said that repeatedly. You seem to want to equate explanation with support. Not so!!!

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Now where was I when I was so rudely interrupted by red herons?

  1. The state tax cuts are all but in law
  2. They will be devastating in 2013 unless
  3. New jobs just might happen with off setting tax revenue 4 OR we will have to raise taxes next session to avoid draconian cuts
  4. Since the budget is not yet final one can not tell whether there was an increase in social services or not for 2012. Most likely there still is.

AND 1. Seniors get no real special tax breaks - about half in Kansas live on SS (about $12K each which they paid to get and which leaves them in the ranks of the poor or near poor. 2. The poor and near poor pay considerably less in taxes (even as a percent of income) than the upper half of the middle class ($50K to 150K). If they have kids they pay no federal income tax at all. 3. The really rich of both political persuasions get a walk – paying about the same percent in taxes as people who make just one tenth of their income.

tbaker 5 years, 9 months ago

Are taxes on the productive portion of society that ends up paying for everything ever called "draconian" or is that label only used to describe government spending cuts?

Speaking of, do the accepted uses of the term "fair" include situations describing the end of government programs, or is that another term only used in connection with raising taxes?

Just curious...

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

Katara says: All your "tax" examples (brought to you by TurboTax!) involve a couple (a teacher married to a policeman) with 2 children. So it really seems more that you have an issue with people who have children who you perceive as getting all the "goodies". I am simply pointing out that your scenarios are inaccurate as they do not represent who is really not paying Federal Income tax.

Moderat Responds. Wrong! My tax examples included tax payers with no children. They also varied home ownership.

I think we have broken the Katara Code with the "goodies" remark. Apparently that is how you think - misdristribution of "goodies" The wife and I are getting plenty of "goodies" - the ones we worked to earn in 40 years of labor. Anybody could have earned them as our source is public employment.

As I have said before everyone should have skin in the tax game so that things they want cost them. There should be a limit on how much government can take from the middle class. Whatever the system it should apply to all - particularly the elites.

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

So Brownback has decided to cut the services before the veterans come home. It is like stabbing them in the back. Veterans, their families, children, the ill, education, working families, schools, secure police, parks, basic environmental protection. Our parents and the grandparents and the current population built Kansas into a caring and careful construction of services and infrastructure. Now Brownback is selling it off or destroying it to give giant tax cuts to the billionaires. Shame.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

How so? The veterans would not need services if Mr. Obama was not forcing them out to save federal money while forcing the residual costs of his war in Afghanistan (and Bush's war in Iraq) onto the states.

According to Mr. Brownback the cuts will lead to jobs for the veterans - jobs they need. I suspect most of them would prefer jobs to hand outs. Since there are no service cuts in the 2012 budget to be implemented just what is the problem? Yes, we may need to raise taxes next year if the jobs and tax revenue do not materialize.

Sounds to me it is pace vs. Brownback as to what the future will bring. Wow!! Glad the Mayans will solve the problem

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

How dare you say the veterans would prefer hand outs to jobs. You are out of your mind. You have faith in Brownback. You will need it. First, I am not just talking about Bush's war vets. You might know what I am talking about, if you spent some time doing something but being a fox trotter. I have driven vets to the VA, sit with them, but people better than me have done a lot more. The services you dismiss as handouts are part of our promise to the vets, if injured, therapy, they gave to their country, us, but you think keeping our promise is some sort of who me? choice. Easy for some without character to decide they don't need to pay their debts. Dead beat.

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

What a piece of work, saying veterans don't need services!!!!

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

I am sorry moderate. I thought you were disagreeing with me that veterans need and wanted jobs. I misunderstood, you were just disagreeing with me that the cuts would hurt the services or not I think they will and hurt the economy, and hurt the chances for job improvement. You think they will work. You think the infrastructure will be ok. I don't.

George Lippencott 5 years, 9 months ago

I don't think they will work ell enough to support needed services a year out. Next session we will have to address that..

Gather your strength, eat your oats and do not PO people we need next session.

pS, we do not need to force veterans out as fast as we are. Personally I find it dispictable to force out a soldier with three combat tours during his first five years in the military. The federal government needs to create programs to transitions these people into well paying jobs at a rate the economy can manage. I believe that something like that had been proposed by the Obama administration absent the measured pace.

pace 5 years, 9 months ago

I agree, I think giving support services and real jobs the first year will matter more than later, not that we should put an arbitrary timer on it. I remember friends coming back from Viet Nam, and getting slammed. I was ashamed of all sides of the politics. Walked out of a peace meeting because of the anger against the vets. I thought it the ugly side of a movement that had a lot of merit. I was never for Bush's wars, but that does not mean I am against protect and serve.

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