Perfectly Legal

Author: David Cay Johnston
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781101216224
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Now updated with a new prologue! Since the mid-1970s, there has been a dramatic shift in America's socioeconomic system, one that has gone virtually unnoticed by the general public. Tax policies and their enforcement have become a disaster, and thanks to discreet lobbying by a segment of the top 1 percent, Washington is reluctant or unable to fix them. The corporate income tax, the estate tax, and the gift tax have been largely ignored by the media. But the cumulative results are remarkable: today someone who earns a yearly salary of $60,000 pays a larger percentage of his income in taxes than the four hundred richest Americans. Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter David Cay Johnston exposes exactly how the middle class is being squeezed to create a widening wealth gap that threatens the stability of the country. By relating the compelling tales of real people across all areas of society, he reveals the truth behind: • "Middle class" tax cuts and exactly whom they benefit. • How workers are being cheated out of their retirement plans while disgraced CEOs walk away with millions. • How some corporations avoid paying any federal income tax. • How a law meant to prevent cheating by the top 2 percent of Americans no longer affects most of them, but has morphed into a stealth tax on single mothers making just $28,000. • Why the working poor are seven times more likely to be audited by the IRS than everyone else. • How the IRS became so weak that even when it was handed complete banking records detailing massive cheating by 1,600 people, it prosecuted only 4 percent of them. Johnston has been breaking pieces of this story on the front page of The New York Times for seven years. With Perfectly Legal, he puts the whole shocking narrative together in a way that will stir up media attention and make readers angry about the state of our country. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Perfectly Legal

Author: David C. Johnston
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781591840695
Format: PDF, ePub
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Identifies practices of discreet lobbying and tax policy manipulation that have been occurring since the mid 1970s and how they have resulted in benefits for the wealthiest people in American society, identifying ways in which the working class is being made to pay the majority of the nation's income taxes. Reprint.

Free Lunch

Author: David Cay Johnston
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101216514
Format: PDF
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The bestselling author of Perfectly Legal returns with a powerful new exposé How does a strong and growing economy lend itself to job uncertainty, debt, bankruptcy, and economic fear for a vast number of Americans? Free Lunch provides answers to this great economic mystery of our time, revealing how today's government policies and spending reach deep into the wallets of the many for the benefit of the wealthy few. Johnston cuts through the official version of events and shows how, under the guise of deregulation, a whole new set of regulations quietly went into effect-- regulations that thwart competition, depress wages, and reward misconduct. From how George W. Bush got rich off a tax increase to a $100 million taxpayer gift to Warren Buffett, Johnston puts a face on all of the dirty little tricks that business and government pull. A lot of people appear to be getting free lunches, but of course there's no such thing as a free lunch, and someone (you, the taxpayer) is picking up the bill. Johnston's many revelations include: How we ended up with the most expensive yet inefficient health-care system in the world How homeowners title insurance became a costly, deceitful, yet almost invisible oligopoly How our government gives hidden subsidies for posh golf courses How Paris Hilton's grandfather schemed to retake the family fortune from a charity for poor children How the Yankees and Mets owners will collect more than $1.3 billion in public funds In these instances and many more, Free Lunch shows how the lobbyists and lawyers representing the most powerful 0.1 percent of Americans manipulated our government at the expense of the other 99.9 percent. With his extraordinary reporting, vivid stories, and sharp analysis, Johnston reveals the forces that shape our everyday economic lives and shows us how we can finally make things better. From the Hardcover edition.

The Fine Print

Author: David Cay Johnston
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101476303
Format: PDF
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“No other modern country gives corporations the unfettered power found in America to gouge cus­tomers, shortchange workers, and erect barriers to fair play. A big reason is that so little of the news . . . addresses the private, government-approved mechanisms by which price gouging is employed to redistribute income upward.” You are being systematically exploited by powerful corporations every day. These companies squeeze their trusting customers for every last cent, risk their retirement funds, and endanger their lives. And they do it all legally. How? It’s all in the fine print. David Cay Johnston, the bestselling author of Per­fectly Legal and Free Lunch, is famous for exposing the perfidies of our biggest institutions. Now he turns his attention to the ways huge corporations hide sneaky stipulations in just about every contract, often with government permission. Johnston has been known to whip out a utility bill and explain line by line what all that mumbo jumbo actually means (and it doesn’t mean anything good, unless you happen to be the utility company). Within all that jargon, disclosed in accordance with all legal requirements, lie the tools these companies use to rob you blind. Even worse is what’s missing—all the contractually binding clauses that companies hide elsewhere yet still enforce and abuse. Consider, for example, how: An insurance company repeatedly delayed paying for a paralyzed man’s vital care despite court orders to pay up. Laws in nineteen states let companies like Goldman Sachs, General Electric, and Procter & Gamble pocket the state income taxes withheld from their workers’ paychecks for up to twenty-five years. A little-known government rule gives safety waiv­ers to deadly industrial facilities secretly located underneath schools and playgrounds. The “FCC Charge” on your phone bill, which appears to be a government fee, actually goes straight to the phone company. Johnston shares solutions you can use to fight back against the hundreds of obscure fees and taxes that line the pockets of big corporations, and to help end these devious practices once and for all.

10 Excellent Reasons Not to Hate Taxes

Author: Stephanie Greenwood
Publisher: New Press, The
ISBN: 1595581618
Format: PDF, Kindle
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An accessible volume of writings by education, economy, and environmental experts poses arguments for the value and necessity of taxes, sharing progressive opinions about how the tax code can be transformed into a tool for social justice. Original.

We Hold These Truths to Be Self Evident

Author: Kenneth N. Addison
Publisher: University Press of America
ISBN: 9780761843313
Format: PDF, ePub
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'We hold these truths to be self evident_' An Interdisciplinary Analysis of the Roots of Racism and Slavery in America delves into the philosophical, historical, socio/cultural and political evolution of racism and slavery in America. The premise of this work is that racism and slavery in America are the result of an unintentional historical intertwining of various Western philosophical, religious, cultural, social, economic, and political strands of thought that date back to the Classical Era. These strands have become tangled in a Gordian knot, which can only be unraveled through the bold application of a variety of multidisciplinary tools. By doing so, this book is intended help the reader understand how the United States, a nation that claims 'all men are created equal,' could be responsible for slavery and the intractable threads of racism and inequality that have become woven into its cultural the fabric.

Temples of Chance

Author: David Johnston
Publisher: Doubleday Books
ISBN: 9780385419208
Format: PDF, Mobi
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An account of how, in the 1980s, the junk bond kings usurped mob control of the casino industry discusses corruption in the industry and the role of the U.S. government in that corruption. National ad/promo.

The Betrayal of Work

Author: Beth Shulman
Publisher: The New Press
ISBN: 1595587292
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Following its publication in hardcover, the critically acclaimed Betrayal of Work became one of the most influential policy books about economic life in America; it was discussed in the pages of Newsweek, Business Week, Fortune, the Washington Post, Newsday, and USA Today, as well as in public policy journals and in broadcast interviews, including a one-on-one with Bill Moyers on PBS’s NOW. The American Prospect’s James K. Galbraith’s praise was typical: “Shulman’s slim and graceful book is a model combination of compelling portraiture, common sense, and understated conviction.” Beth Shulman’s powerfully argued book offers a full program to address the injustice faced by the 30 million Americans who work full time but do not make a living wage. As the influential Harvard Business School newsletter put it, Shulman “specifically outlines how structural changes in the economy may be achieved, thus expanding opportunities for all Americans.” This edition includes a new afterword that intervenes in the post-election debate by arguing that low-wage work is an urgent moral issue of our time.

Divided

Author: David Cay Johnston
Publisher: The New Press
ISBN: 1620970856
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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"The issue of inequality has irrefutably returned to the fore, riding on the anger against Wall Street following the 2008 financial crisis and the concentration of economic and political power in the hands of the super-rich. The Occupy movement made the plight of the 99 percent an indelible part of the public consciousness, and concerns about inequality were a decisive factor in the 2012 presidential elections. How bad is it? According to Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston, most Americans, in inflation-adjusted terms, are now back to the average income of 1966. Shockingly, from 2009 to 2011, the top 1 percent got 121 percent of the income gains while the bottom 99 percent saw their income fall. Yet in this most unequal of developed nations, every aspect of inequality remains hotly contested and poorly understood. Divided collects the writings of leading scholars, activists, and journalists to provide an illuminating, multifaceted look at inequality in America, exploring its devastating implications in areas as diverse as education, justice, health care, social mobility, and political representation. Provocative and eminently readable, here is an essential resource for anyone who cares about the future of America--and compelling evidence that inequality can be ignored only at the nation's peril. "--

A Fine Mess

Author: T. R. Reid
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0735223963
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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New York Times bestelling author T. R. Reid travels around the world to solve the urgent problem of America's failing tax code, unravelling a complex topic in plain English - and telling a rollicking story along the way. The U.S. tax code is a total write-off. Crammed with loopholes and special interest provisions, it works for no one except tax lawyers, accountants, and huge corporations. Not for the first time, we have reached a breaking point. That happened in 1922, and again in 1954, and again in 1986. In other words, every thirty-two years. Which means that the next complete overhaul is due in 2018. But what should be in this new tax code? Can we make the U.S. tax system simpler, fairer, and more efficient? Yes, yes, and yes. Can we cut tax rates and still bring in more revenue? Yes. Other rich countries, from Estonia to New Zealand to the UK—advanced, high-tech, free-market democracies—have all devised tax regimes that are equitable, effective, and easy on the taxpayer. But the United States has languished. So byzantine are the current statutes that, by our government’s own estimates, Americans spend six billion hours and $10 billion every year preparing and filing their taxes. In the Netherlands that task takes a mere fifteen minutes! Successful American companies like Apple, Caterpillar, and Google effectively pay no tax at all in some instances because of loopholes that allow them to move profits offshore. Indeed, the dysfunctional tax system has become a major cause of economic inequality. In A Fine Mess, T. R. Reid crisscrosses the globe in search of the exact solutions to these urgent problems. With an uncanny knack for making a complex subject not just accessible but gripping, he investigates what makes good taxation (no, that’s not an oxymoron) and brings that knowledge home where it is needed most. Never talking down or reflexively siding with either wing of politics, T. R. Reid presses the case for sensible root-and-branch reforms with a companionable ebullience. This affects everyone. Doing our taxes will never be America's favorite pastime, but it can and should be so much easier and fairer.