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Because there will be more laws tomorrow than there are today.

What Won't They Tax?

A article called, "Senate blocks cut to estate tax", explains that a Republican effort to shrink taxes on inherited estates was shot down by Democrats in the Senate. It seems that every time money exchanges hands, the government wants a share.

"A 57-41 vote fell three votes short of advancing the bill."

Under current law, the first $2 million of a person's estate escapes taxation. The rest can be taxed at rates up to 46 percent.

Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Arizona has suggested:

"... exempting the first $5 million of an individual's[sic] estate, or $10 million of a couple's, from taxation. The size of estates escaping the tax would increase each year to keep pace with inflation.

Estates between $5 million and $30 million would be taxed at rates equal to capital gains, and the remainder would be taxed at 30 percent."

Here is a typical Democrat response from Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada.

"The estate tax is an extremely costly tax for a wealthy few that comes at the expense of every other American born and yet to be born for decades to come."

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It's Not Your Fault. You Have A Disease.

An article on called "Study: 16 million might have road rage disorder" describes the latest way we can shift the blame for our poor behavior, onto something out of our control. In other words, another example of a "get out of consequences free card".

I'm sure we have all experienced times when it'd be easiest to just have a tantrum, but we realize that is a child's answer, and we must show more self control than that.

From the article:

"By definition, intermittent explosive disorder involves multiple outbursts that are way out of proportion to the situation. These angry outbursts often include threats or aggressive actions and property damage. The disorder typically first appears in adolescence; in the study, the average age of onset was 14."

"In most situations, he is relatively affable, calm and very responsible," she said. But in stressful situations at home, he "explodes and tears apart his room, throws things at other people" to the point that his parents have called the police.

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Tax Me Once, Shame On You, Tax Me Twice, Shame On Me.

In an article called, "Why Pay Tax Twice for a Phone", by Robert Wonderling (11/3/04) in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the author points out that since cell phone use is taxed twice, it is the most highly taxed sector of the state's economy.

"Last year, legislation imposing a gross-receipts tax on cell-phone services was tied into the revised state budget bill and signed into law. The result was a 5 percent gross-receipts tax on cellular bills, added to the 6 percent monthly sales tax that Pennsylvania consumers already pay."

"The tax was projected to raise about $236 million last fiscal year and $221 million this fiscal year. However, the revenue collections were $636 million over projections for 2004..."

For more info go to :

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Who's Buying Cell Phone Records Online ? Cops.

This article on describes the latest way our privacy is being invaded....

"A congressional panel investigating the fraudulent acquisition and sale of mobile phone records by Internet Web firms has collected evidence that indicates law enforcement officials at the local, state and federal levels use the Internet-based services as an investigative short-cut, has learned. At least one Web-based data seller has told Congress that the FBI is a client."

“There are established legal procedures for obtaining phone records that provide checks against improper access,” said Chris Hoofnagle, an attorney at the Electronic Privacy Information Center who complained to the Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Trade Commission last year about the availability of cell phone records online. “These legal procedures allow fast access to phone record for law enforcement and provide accountability.  That's what missing here, the accountability.”

Watch what you say...

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Texas Busting Drunks ... in bars

A CNN article explains how a sting operation was conducted in a Dallas suburb, "...where agents infiltrated 36 bars and arrested 30 people for public intoxication."

Commissioner Carolyn Beck said, "Being in a bar does not exempt one from the state laws against public drunkenness".

From the article:

"We feel that the only way we're going to get at the drunk driving problem and the problem of people hurting each other while drunk is by crackdowns like this," she said.

"There are a lot of dangerous and stupid things people do when they're intoxicated, other than get behind the wheel of a car," Beck said. "People walk out into traffic and get run over, people jump off of balconies trying to reach a swimming pool and miss."

She said the sting operations would continue throughout the state.

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Stop AOL's Email Tax! is a website that contains an "open letter to america online" asking them to rethink their idea of an email tax which AOL claims will aid in the fight on spam.

Here is an excerpt:

We wish to express our serious concern with AOL's adoption of Goodmail's CertifiedEmail, which is a threat to the free and open Internet.

This system would create a two-tiered Internet in which affluent mass emailers could pay AOL a fee that amounts to an "email tax" for every email sent, in return for a guarantee that such messages would bypass spam filters and go directly to AOL members' inboxes. Those who did not pay the "email tax" would increasingly be left behind with unreliable service. Your customers expect that your first obligation is to deliver all of their wanted mail, and this plan is a step away from that obligation.

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Tax Burdens Around the World

This article by Debora Vrana claims that "Americans enjoy some of the lowest income tax rates in the world."

"When you look at the overall tax burden, the U.S. is quite low," said Eric Toder, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., and former director of the office of research for the Internal Revenue Service. "

 Tax burdens around the world
CountrySingle, no kidsMarried, 2 kidsCountrySingle, no kidsMarried, 2 kids
Czech Republic43.8%27.1%New Zealand20.5%14.5%
Germany51.8%35.7%Slovak Republic38.3%23.2%
Italy45.4%35.2%United Kingdom33.5%27.1%
Japan27.7%24.9%United States29.1%11.9%

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Big Brother Gets a Little Bigger

This article in the Daily Local News, by Martin Indars is titled, "Big Brother should watch and listen on school buses". Indars claims that we should "unwrap the sound buttons" on the video cameras in school buses so that they can record audio of the school bus as well as video. Evidently many school districts across Pennsylvania have been hesitant to do so for legal reasons. Pennsylvania's wiretap laws require that we get someones permission before recording their conversations. For right now, to obtain a wiretap for someone you need to have a logical reason for doing so. Indars wants to record audio on buses where there has been NO reason to do so. That's not how we do things in America. Innocent until proven guilty.... anyone remember that?

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Secondhand Smoke, Figment of your Imagination

Stu Bykofsky's article in the Philadelphia Daily News, titled, "Where there's smoke (or not), there's no ceasefire", dispels the myths that surround the public's latest hysteria, secondhand smoke.

"Tobacco antagonists earlier had failed to ban smoking by saying it kills smokers. The tactic failed because nonsmokers didn't care if smokers have a death wish. To convert nonsmokers into anti-tobacco zealots, they had to be set aflame by fear. The had to be convinced cigarette smoke would kill them."

"Smoking may cause cancer, smoking may contribute to cancer, smoking may increase your risk of cancer, but if the simple equation were smoking=cancer, everyone who smokes would get cancer. The vast majority of smokers never get cancer. Your life experience tells you this is true.

"No scientific study has ever shown a death attributable to exposure to secondhand smoke at the level found in any decently ventilated bar or restaurant."

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Dutch Family Taxed for Barking Doorbell

Yahoo! News reports in this article about the worlds most ridiculous law yet.

"In the Netherlands, dog owners are required to pay the "hondenbelasting," an infamous annual tax that is frequently evaded. "

In case you're wondering the charge for the tax.....80 euros, or about 97 dollars.

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Many Utilities Collect for Taxes They Never Pay

In this New York Times article , author David Johnston explains that many utilities companies are collecting money from their customers for corporate income taxes , then keeping the money rather than sending it to the government.

"... these legal monopolies make more than they are authorized to, and other taxpayers have to make up the difference in higher taxes or reduced services."

"Normally, customer payments for those taxes eventually find their way to federal and state governments. That is usually the case for independent utilities like Consolidated Edison , which serves the New York area, and American Electric Power, which operates in 11 states from Kentucky to Oklahoma.

But in recent years many utilities have expanded into unregulated businesses, like energy trading and aircraft leasing, while others have been acquired by companies that own other businesses. When those other businesses lose money or create artificial losses through tax planning , those losses can be used to offset income earned by the utilities.

As a result, the parent companies owe less in taxes than their electric customers paid. Sometimes these companies owe nothing, or receive large tax refunds. By not remitting the taxes, the parent companies effectively have more money to invest in their operations or pay to shareholders in dividends. "

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West Chester Dumps the Trash Collection Tax

I am pleased to report that West Chester has cut it's plans for creating a new tax. An article titled "W.C. Dumps the Trash-Collection Tax", by the Daily Local News reports that,

"West Chester Borough Council took a quick about-face on the proposed $16.25 monthly trash-collection fee at a special meeting..."

"I must say it was a misstep on our part", said Councilwoman Maria Chesterton. "We've listened to what everyone said and have decided to move in another direction."

"Several borough residents had argued the introduction of a garbage fee amounted to a massive tax hike ($195 annually) by another name."

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Houston Police Chief Wants Surveillance Cameras In Private Homes

This web page talks about the latest ridiculous step to reduce our privacy.

""HOUSTON Houston's police chief is suggesting putting surveillance cameras in apartment complexes, downtown streets and even private homes ."
"Chief Harold Hurtt today said it's another way of combating crime amid a shortage of officers.
In the meantime, Homeland Security grants are being used to blanket major cities and even small sleepy communities with arsenals of spy cameras.
All over the United States, Canada and Britain, surveillance camera systems are being installed on street corners, in public bathrooms, in residential neighborhoods, and even in parks and forests. "

Civil liberties groups justly attacked this proposition.

Scott Henson with the American Civil Liberties Union calls Hurtt's proposal to require surveillance cameras as part of some building permits -- "radical and extreme."

It kind of makes you wonder, what will they think up next?

The article concludes with,

"This is the prison without bars. This is the panopticon, a prison so constructed that the inspector can see each of the prisoners at all times, without being seen. This is a portrait of the accelerating movement by western governments to erect giant, powerful, all-pervading mass surveillance, tracking and control grids that will keep all populations firmly under the baleful and watchful gaze of Big Brother. "

A related article entitled Houston Eyes Cameras at Apartment Complexes quotes the Houston police chief Harold Hurtt as saying,

"I know a lot of people are concerned about Big Brother, but my response to that is, if you are not doing anything wrong, why should you worry about it?"

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Tax Cuts

Once again it has become necessary to defend Bush's tax cuts against ignorant attacks by liberals. Some have gone so off the deep end that it's hard to take them seriously. This website , for example, claimed that,

" Tax cuts kill. Ask the relatives of the dead of the Gulf Coast. "

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Homeowners Associations = Communism ?

Lakiesha McGhee wrote an article titled, " Panel Eyes Oversight of Housing Groups " which recommends taking power away from Homeowners Associations.

"The commission has heard stories about home foreclosures over trivial amounts of money owed and restrictive rules preventing homeowners from making improvements to their property."

Just imagine: You own your property, and your neighbors are going to tell you what kinds of improvements you can make. I know it's hard to imagine, but it's happening right now.

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