Category Archives: Blog

The FairTax Act | My Research and Thoughts

In 2005, the bi-partisan President’s Advisory Panel for Federal Tax Reform, formed by then-President George W. Bush, criticized the current U.S. tax system as being exceedingly complex, requiring detailed record-keeping, lengthy instructions, and complicated schedules, worksheets, and forms (“Executive Order” and “Members”). The panel contended that the U.S.’s current tax system penalizes labor, discourages saving and investment, and encumbers U.S. business competition (“Executive Order” and Rhodes).

Currently, there are two leading tax reform proposals that address the varying problems with the existing U.S. tax system. The first of these two proposals is referred to as the Flat Tax; this is a consumption tax model. The Flat Tax would “require citizens to file tax returns as they do now, paying tax on all spent money” (Hodge). The Flat Tax would eliminate estate and capital gains taxes, eliminate double taxation via a single tax rate system, and reduce compliance costs and “the tax system’s dead-weight loss to the economy” (Hodge).

However, it is the second of the two proposals that has gained the most ground in recent years. Many U.S. citizens and politicians have called for the elimination of U.S. federal payroll taxes, personal income taxes, corporate income taxes, and estate taxes, and these same individuals have called for the implementation of a national consumption tax, also known as a national retail tax or a national sales tax. Unlike the aforementioned tax reform model, this model “solely relies on transaction-based consumption tax” (Dalsgaard). The leading proposal for a federal consumption tax is H.R. 25/S. 296, known better to the public as the FairTax Act (“FairTax”). The sales tax rate, as defined in the proposed legislation and expressed inclusively, would be 23 percent of the total payment including the tax—or, $23 of every $100 spent in total (Regnier).

This begs a question; should the U.S. replace the federal payroll, personal income, corporate income, and estate taxes with a national consumption tax, namely the FairTax Act?

Part II to come.

Works cited to come.

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Facebook Fail

facebook-fail

… Whoops.

[Source: Geekologie]

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Lewd? Maybe. Questionable? Definitely.

I have a feeling a man developed this classy piece of workout equipment for women. The Shake Weight can be seen in the video below.

Often times, there’s a lot of market research that goes into these things people sell. I would like to have seen that. Did no woman think, “That looks highly and erotically suspicious.” I assure you there are a few Creepy McCreppersons out there who’ve gone out and bought their wifey a Shake Weight.

Sick.

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Don’t You Forget About Me: John Hughes Passes Away

Legendary 80s and 90s films director John Hughes passed away today at the age of 59. Hughes suffered a heart attack today while taking a stroll in Manhattan, New York City, where he was visiting family.

Hughes was the director of several immensely popular and successful films, such as “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” “The Breakfast Club,” and “Planes, Trains and Automobiles.” He was also a leading scriptwriter, penning films such as “Pretty in Pink” and “Home Alone.” Hughes was known for showing his typically young protagonists in a far more profound, witty light.

“Many filmmakers portray teenagers as immoral and ignorant, with pursuits that are pretty base. They seem to think that teenagers aren’t very bright. But I haven’t found that to be the case. I listen to kids. I respect them. I don’t discount anything they have to say just because they’re only 16 years old.”

You’ll be missed, Hughes. You’ll be missed.

[Source: BBC News]

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Sometimes, I’m Bored

So I’ll use Picnik to screw around with some pictures. Here’s a gem I made for my brother. It. Is. Awesome.

ObenhausI really think I have some talent, aside from the skin on the neck and the rest of the body not matching.

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Real Celebs of Genius Presents: Avril Lavigne

Jeni O. Presents: Real Celebs of Genius
(Real Celebs of Genius!)

Avril Lavigne

Today we salute you. Ms. Avril Rock-Your-Face-Off Lavigne.
(Ms. Avril Rock-Your-Face-Off Lavigne!)
Wearing your classiest  black and white striped hoochie ensemble and terribly dyed hair, you’re living the real life rocker dream.
Getting paid to show up at events to do what no one else could do… drink yourself stupid and slutty
(Why you have to go and make things so complicated?!)
Sure it may hurt your career, alienate your young fans, ruin your “voice,” or demolish your marriage to that Sum 41 troll, but you chug alcohol from a bottle being held by a stranger with class and motherf*ckin’ grace.
(Grace motherf*ckuuhh)
But your keen instincts tell you to stick to activities that involve a lot of blacking out and rocking out. And if that doesn’t work, who cares? You’re a motherf*ckin princess.
(Rock on!)
So crack open a bottle of liquor, oh Lover of Sk8ter Boiz. ‘Cause we all know, you’re too cool to give a f*ck.
(Ms. Avril Rock-Your-Face-Off Lavigne!)

[Photo courtesy of The Blemish]

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Emmy’s Shmemmy’s

So, I don’t watch a lot of TV, so this list of Emmy nominees for this year is pretty unexciting. Except, wait… yes! “Flight of the Conchords” made the list! So, that show, along with “House M.D.,” “Entourage,” “Family Guy,” and “The Office” ought to be the big winners of the night. ‘Nuff said. I’ve italicized those below that I think should win in each category. I have a few conflicts of interest, as you may note.

Best Drama Series:
“Damages”
“Dexter”
“House M.D.”
“Lost”
“Mad Men”
“Big Love”
“Breaking Bad”

Best Comedy Series:
“Entourage”
“Family Guy”
“The Office”

“30 Rock”
“How I Met Your Mother”
“Weeds”
“Flight of the Conchords”

Lead Actor in a Drama Series:
Simon Baker, “The Mentalist”
Bryan Cranston, “Breaking Bad”
Michael C. Hall, “Dexter”
Jon Hamm, “Mad Men”
Hugh Laurie, “House M.D.”
Gabriel Byrne, “In Treatment”

Lead Actress in a Drama Series:*
Glenn Close, “Damages”
Sally Field, “Brothers and Sisters”
Mariska Hargitay, “Law & Order: SVU”
Holly Hunter, “Saving Grace”
Kyra Sedgwick, “The Closer”
Elisabeth Moss, “Mad Men”

* I don’t care about this category whatsoever.

Lead Actor in a Comedy Series:
Alec Baldwin, “30 Rock”
Steve Carrell, “The Office”
Jim Parsons, “The Big Bang Theory”
Tony Shalhoub, “Monk”
Charlie Sheen, “Two and a Half Men”
Jemaine Clement, “Flight of the Conchords”

Lead Actress in a Comedy Series:
Toni Collette, “United States of Tara”
Julia Louis-Dreyfus, “The New Adventures of Old Christine”
Tina Fey, “30 Rock”
Mary-Louise Parker, “Weeds”
Christina Applegate, “Samantha Who?”
Sarah Silverman, “The Sarah Silverman Program”

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series:
Kevin Dillon, “Entourage”
Neil Patrick Harris, “How I Met Your Mother”
Rainn Wilson, “The Office”
Tracy Morgan, “30 Rock”
Jack McBrayer, “30 Rock”
Jon Cryer, “Two and a Half Men”

Supporting Actor in a Drama Series:
William Shatner, “Boston Legal”
Christian Clemenson, “Boston Legal”
Aaron Paul, “Breaking Bad”
William Hurt, “Damages”
Michael Emerson, “Lost”
John Slattery, “Mad Men”

Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series:
Kristin Chenowith, “Pushing Daisies”
Amy Poehler, “Saturday Night Live”
Kristin Wig, “Saturday Night Live”
Jane Krakowski, “30 Rock”
Vanessa Williams, “Ugly Betty”
Elizabeth Perkins, “Weeds”

Supporting Actress in a Drama Series:
Rose Byrne, “Damages”
Sandra Oh, “Grey’s Anatomy”
Chandra Wilson, “Grey’s Anatomy”
Dianne Wiest, “In Treatment”
Hope Davis, “In Treatment”
Cherry Jones, “24″

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