Monday, December 11, 2017
 
Disclosure of Trump’s Tax Losses Says More About Tax Code Than About Trump Himself

NEW YORK, NY Oct. 3 (DPI) – The New York Times this weekend disclosed that Donald Trump posted a $916 million loss on his 1995 tax return, which under longstanding tax rules would have allowed him to carry forward losses and avoid paying taxes on income for years thereafter – a legal offset he likely exploited.

The ensuing outcry – particularly among Clinton supporters and Democrats generally – painted a picture of Trump The Tax Dodger, when in fact all his filings were apparently legal, experts say.

By Monday the report had attracted more than 7,300 comments on the Times site alone, most of them predictably excoriating the impresario businessman whose comportment and record are checkered at best.   The Most Recommended Comment – liked by more than 8200 readers – expressed a widely held sentiment, although somewhat misguided since Trump seems to have operated within the bounds of the law:

Donald Trump is a deadbeat. He drives on roads paid for by teachers and mocks an army paid for by secretaries. He’s a freeloader complaining about his free meal, pure and simple.

This highest recommended:

Is anybody surprised? He already said that it’s ‘smart’ to dodge taxes… and he has the guts to complain about US subpar infrastructure! Where does he think the government gets the money from?!?

The second highest recommended comment focuses on the need for tax reform – a policy proposal advocated more by Trump himself than by Hilary Clinton:

Income from capital and income from labor are taxed so very differently. It is unfair that an unemployed person cannot declare a “loss” that they carry over for subsequent years; neither can a worker struggling to pay of their tuition and childcare. Tax reform to ensure that the wealthy pay their fair share is of utmost importance.

Much is being made online this week of the NYT’s apparent willingness to violate the law to publish details of a single Trump tax return.  Earlier this year, the paper’s editor, Dean Baquet, told an academic gathering that he would risk arrest or incarceration by publishing Trump’s tax information because he said such disclosures would be in the public interest.

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