« Tangential thoughts from RGB to Arthur Ashe | Main | Two men on a stage »

September 27, 2020

Comments

There was an apparently 1-2 in combination with the Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/2020/politics/donald-trump-father-will/

per the Guardian's live blog

Notably, Michael Kranish’s piece does not rely on any anonymous sources, rather audiotaped conversations, depositions and other public documents:

I pay more in taxes than billionaire Donald Trump.

Being a hypocrite is bad enough, but now I'm exposed as the worst thing you can be in America ... or the Mafia ... a sucker.

I've just been watching his press conference (in which of course he denied all the tax stuff), but the best thing was that he kept harping on about how appalling the press was being about Barrett's Catholicism, and how anti-Catholic everybody was being, and how disgraceful it was etc because "Catholicism is, like, a major religion", and you couldn't help wondering if he's forgotten that Biden is a practising Catholic...

With the tax returns, as with everything else in his life, Trump's MO appears to be to break every rule in sight. And then use every legal (or dubiously legal) tactic to . . . stall. Until the other party gives up and he gets away with it. (Or until one of them dies.) And it appears to be what he's doing with his taxes as well. Just with Barr folding the Justice Dept. in on his side as well.

I could see him doing something similar with the election returns. File heaps of lawsuits, and try to stall until the results are legally required to be published. Then claim anything that has been held up and not counted now can't be counted.

I'm thinking of how the military ran out of bullets midway thru's Obama's witchdoctor reign that we could have afforded if Trump and his subhumans had paid some taxes.

And all of those golf outings and Secret Service expenses and hotel payoffs I've been paying for.

I guess we're going to have to go after Marty to get repaid for what has been stolen from us. And with interest, although I expect conservatives will go all Muslim regarding usury now that WE want our money back.

And on top of that, when Trump steals the election and bills me for his trouble, I have William Barr's home address.

The French Revolution and the Bolshevik Revolution were not my cup of tea, but one does identify with the pent-up savage fury along with the condescension of the regimes defenders coming to a head with catastrophically murderous consequences for those who fucked their people for so long, regardless of the consequences for mankind and the unfortunate sudden going of style of capital and tiaras.

It's lucky the volcano and earthquake sensors maintained by the government, to the distress of the vermin small government crowd, have not yet been completely defunded.

I'm noticing picture frames tilting a bit on the wall and friends tell me their pets are acting oddly, which is a common harkening before major tectonic shifts, so there is terrifically powerful seismic social and political activity building underneath the surface.

Machete sales are up too.

Biden is insufficiently pro life to be a true follower of Fetus Christ. Thou shalt overturn Roe v Wade is their one and only commandment. Check that box and all all else is permitted. Fail to check that box, or to swear you will force everyone else to check that box as well, and you are an unrepentant apostate.

It's the evangelical equivalent of selling indulgences.

Campaign Manager for the Republican Party's President of the United States, fired recently for being NOT being CRAZY enough:

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/parscale-hospitalized-after-barricading-himself-in-home-with-guns

I got nothin.

I'll come up with something.

There is something about suicidal fucks running my government that I'm not really too enthused about.

Because I believe they are prime candidates for being genocidal murder/suicides ending up in underground bunkers along with the corpses of their unloved ones.

No one can accuse him of being a hypocrite, however.

No one can accuse him either of being Black Lives Matter or Antifa, because there would be footage of him being removed from his home with ten bullet holes in his back and body cameras off.

Wipe it off the face off the Earth.

My only surprise is she paid something at all

But her email

... is that he paid,,,

In order to pay less, he had his as yet unindicted attorneys show up in drag for the audit, showing a little mottled leg, so your first comment was closer.

In the interest of tamping down partisan hypocrisy, the Democratic Mayor of New York should resign immediately and join the Republican Party as Secretary of WTF.

750 is the new 666.

And it won’t matter

The gop is a cult

Trump is a crook. His old man was a crook, his kids are crooks, he's a crook.

And it won’t matter

The gop is a cult

Yep. It won't matter to them.

But it will matter to us. More fuel for our fire!

Trump is a crook. His old man was a crook, his kids are crooks, he's a crook.

In short, they're all still with the family business.

So unusual to see that any more. Kids discover new interests and new talents, and go off to pursue those. But I suppose that, if folks in your family aren't bright enough to have interests, and utterly lack talent, you might as well go with tradition.

$747,622 to Ivanka as a consultancy payment is a bit odd, as she was also a Trump Org. employee.
Stupid question, but is that legal ?

I hope Biden's debate prep team have a snappy answer prepared on:

1. How much tax Biden has paid in the last 20 years

2. How much tax Trump has paid in the last 20 years

3. How much the American taxpayer has paid in the last three and a half years for Trump's golf trips.

It's possible leaving out number 1 might be snappier and better, and it's possible that keeping Obama's golfing expenses in reserve might be advisable in case Trump tries to deflect with that, but something along these lines would be an excellent soundbite to cut through for many replays....

"Biden: there's no fact-checking during this debate, because it's super-simple: everything Trump says is a lie."

"Trump: I NEVER LIE!"

"Biden: aaand, there's another one"

"Trump is a crook. His old man was a crook, his kids are crooks, he's a crook."

https://washingtonmonthly.com/2020/09/28/a-national-nightmare-whoever-owns-trumps-enormous-debts-could-be-running-the-country/

I wonder to what extent Mitt Romney's untaxed fortune in offshore accounts dovetails with all of this.

If Hillary hadn't hired accountants who couldn't run a small-town tax preparation office if their lives depended on it to do her and Bill's taxes, think of the cash they would have saved by not paying all of those taxes recorded in their publicly released and vetted tax returns.

Not that the Clintons are innocent. But of what?

At least, both of their two-faced faces are evident to the casual observer.

Though I must admit Bill Clinton was clever in the way he got Trump and William Barr to murder Epstein*, though I'm confident those latter two are competent self-starters in that game without Clinton's help.

It's just that the Clintons aren't very good at being scoundrels like the professionals: subhuman republicans who sell their innocent-faced tax-cheating bullshit to the rubes, yeah, the deplorables, the latter of whom who wish they had enough money to rob everyone else blind like the professional movers and shakers.

The entire conservative movement, up, down, inside out, fore and aft, is a gigantic tax cheating dodge with their fingers inside every pussy they can grab, first for the raping and second, to insure no raped woman has access to legal abortion.

Butcher it.

Epstein and Amy Coney Barrett are a fascinating pair of twin bookends to the republican Trump debacle, each with an unwelcome finger in the same pie.

And people say tax accountancy isn't sexy.

What does it say about Amy Coney Barrett that she chooses as a boss and co-worker the Evil Mafia Don Trump and his landfills full of suspicious remains.

Someone tell me again that any means to an end is preen-free morality.

*CountmeAnon

It's true that Mike Pence is handsome in a merely pedestrian way:

https://www.thedailybeast.com/trump-wanted-to-pick-ivanka-as-his-2016-running-mate-rick-gates-reveals-in-new-book-wicked-game?via=newsletter&source=CSAMedition

From JT's Washington Monthly link (emphasis NOT added):

One fact stands out far above all the others in its staggering implications: Donald Trump is personally responsible for $421 million worth of loans coming due in the next few years. Not his business. Him. Personally. He has no means of repaying them. He already refinanced his few profitable properties, and sold off most of his stocks to stay afloat. He appears short on liquidity. And we still don’t know to whom he owes the money.

So, Trump is modeling his personal finances after the federal government. All he needs for completeness is a benjamin printer.

He also seems to be doing a good job of modeling the federal government's finances after his personal finances. He's trending in the direction of being the debtiest (it's a word, says me) president.

I worked for years for a sequence* of giant corporations that paid little or no business income tax. It was in an industry where it was possible to take large paper losses almost on demand in order to reduce profits to zero. The companies were doing nothing illegal, they were simply making use of a tax code full of loopholes for big businesses.

For example, for a few years I was a "depreciating asset". Whatever Congress had intended to do with some loophole, depreciation could be taken on people doing certain kinds of R&D work. At the end of the year I had to fill out a one-page form to confirm that my work qualified. For a while at that time, MLB players were traded not based just on their salary and on-field performance, but by whether they had been fully depreciated. When traded to a different team, the receiving team could assign a value to them and begin taking their own depreciation.

Interest only loans are a problem only if you can't roll them over when they are due. Many financial institutions are very cooperative about this. If a business has a large reliable revenue source and the loan has sufficient priority call on that revenue stream, rolling over a billion-dollar loan is a no-effort-required way to keep that billion dollars in "productive" use. Productive from the point of view of the lender. So the pertinent question is probably not "Can Trump come up with the money to repay the loans?" but "Does Trump have the revenues to make the interest payments?"

* I sat at the same desk doing the same job while a series of mergers, acquisitions, and spin-offs changed which company was writing my paychecks.

He's trending in the direction of being the debtiest (it's a word, says me) president.

Which is particularly impressive when you consider that we didn't run up that debt in order to fight an existential war (Civil War, WW II) -- which was the traditional driver of big, abrupt, debt increases. We did it in order to give huge tax breaks to people who already have so much money that they don't need it. Indeed, can't even figure out anything better to do with it than bid up stock prices, with minimal actual investment in the real economy.

the pertinent question is probably not "Can Trump come up with the money to repay the loans?" but "Does Trump have the revenues to make the interest payments?"

The risk, always, is that the lender decides to exit the house of cards. Trump is a borrower who every bank has refused to continue lending to.** If one believes his tax returns (just for the sake of discussion), his net revenues are negative. Which would say that No, he doesn't have revenues to service that debt.

** Except Deutsche Bank. Odd, that. But perhaps their money laundering operations needed him.

I made the statement, I think in another thread, that the tax revelations would not change a single mind.

$70K write-off for hair care.

There may actually be some folks in Trump's base who will find a $70K write-off for hair care to the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back.

If that doesn't do it, I don't know what will.

David Frum

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/09/trumps-tax-returns-proves-he-just-another-moocher/616516/

“They should be taxed a fair amount of money,” he said. “They’re not paying enough tax.”

Who is "they"?

How much of what Trump has done is sleazy but legal and how much is illegal? When it comes to what sleazy rich people do with their taxes I can’t tell the difference.

I worked for years for a sequence* of giant corporations that paid little or no business income tax. It was in an industry where it was possible to take large paper losses almost on demand in order to reduce profits to zero.

This is why people who work for a living feel like things are stacked against them.

And, they are correct.

Dear Trump voter - if you look around the room and can't figure out who the mark is, you're the mark.

russell, I think you said that the revelations about the attempt to cheat his family wouldn't change a single mind, and then the tax returns thing hit, and no doubt you thought the same thing about them. Funnily enough, I'm not sure about the haircare thing, they might think it's funny. As for the revelation that for weeks he wanted Ivanka to be his VP pick, his base would probably approve given the low bar they accept for eligibility.

Basically just a slightly more sophisticated shell game:
https://slate.com/business/2020/09/trumps-taxes-audit-loss-irs.html

For higher stakes.

Not sure what was going on with Deutsche Bank.
Didn't their cultural Teutonic fiscal conservatism prevent giving money to an obvious crook?

Or did Donnie put up his "hottest daughter" as collateral?

It's irresponsible not to speculate.

If one believes his tax returns (just for the sake of discussion), his net revenues are negative.

I don't believe the analysis has gotten as far as depreciation, amortization, and intangibles. My first assumption is that there are large real revenues offset by larger paper losses. I recall an instance where the company where I worked had $30B of accumulated "goodwill" in its asset base some of which was written off from time to time when unexpected revenues needed to be offset.

To put numbers on an example, I assume he gets a net distribution from the rats' nest of LLCs that looks like $50M in cash and $60M in paper losses. A net loss for the year, $10M for his personal lifestyle, and $40M tax free to stash somewhere.

I'm absolutely certain that golf courses and money laundering had nothing whatsoever to do with it.

Any taxes that corporations pay ultimately come out of some individual's pocket. Whether it be stockholders, employees, or customers.

Not Trump's pocket.

Not sure what was going on with Deutsche Bank.
Didn't their cultural Teutonic fiscal conservatism prevent giving money to an obvious crook?

Apparently not as long as they thought they could make money out of the operation. "Fiscal conservatism" so often is a matter of how you take care of your own money. If someone else spending wildly doesn't hurt you, who cares?

And they weren't so much giving him money as paying him to help them launder it. (In ways that he could avoid having to pay taxes on the income.)

Any taxes that corporations pay ultimately come out of some individual's pocket.

money not paid in taxes also comes out of somebody's pocket.

somebody else's.

In the absence of fraud, and a couple of discrete exceptions--the IRS has had these returns for sometime: it can audit and file charges, if the evidence so justifies--you cannot deduct a dollar you did not spend. Depreciation works that way: you buy a capital asset and amortize the cost over some number of years. You can "shelter" rent income by deducting against current rental receipts the depreciation for that year which usually a 40 year depreciation schedule meaning you deduct 1/40th of what you spent to buy the real property. Depreciation of other capital assets has the effect of reducing "taxable income" in a given year, but the taxpayer can only deduct the depreciation. The taxpayer cannot deduct the cost of the capital asset except through depreciation.

With DT, fraud can never be ruled out. But, the IRS is where the tax fraud story begins, so the real question is: what conclusions do you draw from the feds having had full possession of his returns and have done nothing with them?

But, the IRS is where the tax fraud story begins, so the real question is: what conclusions do you draw from the feds having had full possession of his returns and have done nothing with them?

His $73M refund is under audit, so I don't know if "nothing" is accurate. They're also in possession of millions of tax returns. Maybe they had better things to do with their increasingly limited resources. Of course, that might change now.

what conclusions do you draw from the feds having had full possession of his returns and have done nothing with them?

I think agencies like the IRS are generally reluctant to pursue legal action against people holding public office. It's too easy for it to seem like a political play.

All other things being equal, that's not necessarily a bad thing.

Trump's tax shenanigans predate his being in - or even running for - office, though. His questionable refund goes back a decade.

what conclusions do you draw from the feds having had full possession of his returns and have done nothing with them?

But have they done nothing with them? Or have they merely not finished slogging thru the blizzard of legal motions that Trump has doubtless thrown at them at every turn?

Interestingly, in view of the Brad Parscale suicide threat/attempt, C4 have just run a long piece about a leak of data today from the Trump 2016 campaign showing how disproportionate numbers of black individual voters in swing states (three million altogether) were targeted on Facebook with specialised ads etc because they were in a category called "Deterrence", i.e. they would not vote for Trump so attempts needed to be made to deter them from voting. Analysis then showed how black voter turnout in the relevant wards was down from the previous election by 15-20%. They then ran tape of Parscale denying there had been any such attempt in the campaign. None of this might be a surprise, the Parscale aspect might just be a coincidence....

FYI

https://www.channel4.com/news/revealed-trump-campaign-strategy-to-deter-millions-of-black-americans-from-voting-in-2016

What that Channel 4 report talks about is nothing particularly different than routine negative campaigning. Persuading supporters of your opponent to not support her.

Calling it "voter suppression" or saying that it amounts to "rigging the election" is not only false. It discounts the very real cases where there actually is voter suppression -- that is, people are being prevented (not persuaded) from registering and/or voting.

What that Channel 4 report talks about is nothing particularly different than routine negative campaigning.

The specificity of the targeting isn't (or at least wasn't) routine. The racial aspect of it makes it especially odious, even if it doesn't amount to suppression or rigging.

But have they done nothing with them? Or have they merely not finished slogging thru the blizzard of legal motions that Trump has doubtless thrown at them at every turn?

The order of process is: IRS reviews the return, does an audit, and then files charges if warranted. The motions and whatnot start after the charges are filed. It's fair to say that I'm assuming the IRS has "done nothing", and I could be wrong. Whatever DT did prior to taking office is fair game, particularly if fraud is involved.

What it looks like based on what we know--which I suspect is a lot less then we will know a year or so from now after professionals have sorted through the returns--is that DT's empire was more like a house of cards than Buffet's operation. He was losing, or so it appears, tons of money. That's not great business acumen. Losing money to avoid taxes is really, really stupid. If the marginal tax rate is 40 cents on the dollar, in what universe does it make sense to lose a full dollar to save 40 cents in taxes?

At best, deductibility makes things like a slightly larger home more affordable.

The business about paying family to do a job is not particularly difficult in theory. In typical family business, paying both spouses separately increases the tax load because you pay double the FICA/Medicare/Medicaid tax plus the match. You can offset that with 401K's. Both spouses are expected, under IRS rules, to actually earn their money, but in practice, it's pretty sketchy and difficult to enforce, or so I'm told. Paying the wife 750K to consult seems like a reach. That said, I suspect other presidential offspring/relations have pretty well-paying jobs on family-related enterprises and don't put in a lot of overtime.

...is that DT's empire was more like a house of cards than Buffet's operation.

I hadn't heard. Fill me in. Maybe you are thinking of Bernie...the other Bernie.

There is also a hint of outright fraud...i.e., not declaring some big "considerations" (loan forgiveness qualifies I believe) as income.

Warren Buffet (Omaha, NB) actually had the financial acumen that Trump pretends to. So he got rich. His investors (especially the early ones) got rich, too.

And he did it without stiffing his creditors. And without getting involved in money laundering and such. And without doing sketchy things with his taxes. Such things are possible. Trump just doesn't have what it takes to accomplish them. But he likes to pretend he does on TV.

DT's empire was more like a house of cards than Buffet's operation.

LOL

There is also a hint of outright fraud...i.e., not declaring some big "considerations" (loan forgiveness qualifies I believe) as income.

Let me clarify: yes, loan forgiveness is a taxable event, i.e. it is income to the forgiven borrower, but that isn't DT's situation. DT has operating losses, or so he says, that offset income. The question is: did he/his companies actually incur that loss. No one declares income that isn't there. Manufacturing losses from some offshore, hard-to-audit and passing them through to domestic revenue would be the general class of bad acting I'd be looking for.


Except the claim is that that is Trump’s situation:
... The earlier loss was related to his failed casino business: Trump borrowed about $1 billion and lost it. If Trump had defaulted on the debt and it had been forgiven, he would have had to pay tax on the canceled debt. Otherwise, both Trump and the bank could claim a loss on the loans. However, the banks swapped this debt for equity in the failing business. By all rights, this swap should have resulted in canceled debt income to Trump—and a tax bill—because the equity was worth significantly less than the debt owed. Somehow that got lost in the shuffle. The result was that Trump got to earn about $1 billion of income going forward and pay no tax on it until 2005....

And continuing:
... Back to the new documents: About $700 million of the most recent loss also appears to be casino-related (the rest appear to be from operating losses suffered by Trump’s businesses). According to the Times, Trump claimed to have abandoned a partnership interest in that same floundering casino business, generating the loss. However, he may have received an equity interest in the reorganized casino entity, which undermines his claim of “abandonment” and should have prevented him from taking the loss...

Of course, there’s no way of being sure what is the case here without further information.

He filed for bankruptcy for his casino. Losing money while running a casino is a real trick, or so I've heard: casinos are practically guaranteed to be highly profitable. Wonder how he managed to lose money on that.

Did he leverage the casino to finance something else? If so, what was the "something else," and what happened to it?

Warren (not Elizabeth) filled me in. He also said to tell McKinney he is doing just fine.

Here's the rundown on Drumph,

His liquid assets have been liquidated. Trump is a pantsless financial buccaneer.

His income from The Apprentice is tailing off.

Major components of his asset base are hemorrhaging cash....aka negative cash flow.

He has worn out his depreciation gifts.

He may not be able to cover the interest on the loans coming due over the next 4-5 years....typically creditors are leery about rolling over loans where the customer can't even make interest payments.

This could be a problem, depending on who the creditors are (unknown at present).

Way to go, conservatives!

BP--none of that would come as a shock to me. It is entirely in line with DT being a full-on, clinical narcissist. Reality is what he says it is.

...typically creditors are leery about rolling over loans where the customer can't even make interest payments... This could be a problem, depending on who the creditors are (unknown at present).

Could be interesting. IIRC from the 2007-08 unpleasantness, the Federal Reserve bought a bunch of paper that everyone thought was worthless. But with careful unwinding over a few years most of it turned out okay. It's probably not in any of the creditors' interests to see the Trump Organization disintegrate in a cascading failure event.

It's probably not in any of the creditors' interests to see the Trump Organization disintegrate in a cascading failure event.

What saved his ass last time, too.

You'd think the big banks would have learned. But then they got a bail out even when the US government was sticking the middle class homeowner with all the hurt of the bubble.

The senate won't let culpability float high enough to take a bite out of their own fortunes.

Michael,

Assuming it was one creditor, they could take over his remaining good assets that still throw off a good deal of cash (Trump Tower) and sell the rest. The kicker is Trump's personal guarantee is on the paper.

As for the housing crash, the disruption, personal tragedies, foregone output, and economic dislocation was huge. The black community's net financial wealth took a huge dive from which it has yet to recover. The fact that the paper purchased by the fed (a lot of it corporate paper) more of less recovered simply underscores a critical point: The financial economy is not the same thing as the real economy.

What saved his ass last time, too.

You'd think the big banks would have learned.

They did. That's why none of them (except Deutsche) lend to him any more. Which at least makes cascading bank failures unlikely out of all this.

With DT, fraud can never be ruled out. But, the IRS is where the tax fraud story begins, so the real question is: what conclusions do you draw from the feds having had full possession of his returns and have done nothing with them?

I conclude, tentatively, all or some of the following:

1. The IRS is not done.

2. (Most likely) Trump's business is a huge web of LLC's, partnerships, and whatnots. The IRS audit division is understaffed (wonder why) and simply lacks the ability to chase down every transaction, verify all those K-1's,1065's, and 1099's. Big property tax deduction? OK, show us the receipts. Good. never asked is whether those were really business properties.

3.(Related to 2) Trump has an army of lawyers and accountants fighting the IRS at every turn. That lets him get away with a lot.


I will say I'm puzzled by all the attention paid to Ivanka's consulting contract. Sure, it's a deduction for the Trump Organization, but it's also taxable income to her. So what's the big deal? My guess is that she too has enough scams to not pay much tax, so it's dodging gift/estate tax, but I don't know.

Someone run out and get me an IRS auditor:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeling/2019/05/20/irs-audit-rate-on-the-rich-collapses/#5aeee7c14617

Oh, yeah, they've been sicced on the small-fry.

As usual, purified American radical conservative horseshit, liquified and fed through straws to asshole ungoverned and ungovernable Americans, who suck their own dicks.

Love that the name "Forbes" is attached to that article.

Hey, republicans, you'll need fully armed reinforcements to get one cent out of me at any level of shit government.

There will be no IRS, no FDA, no anything if Trump prevails like Hitler against the hapless Poles.

Then everything is speech, especially highly articulate violence.

$458 billion in tax revenue shortfall.

And yet you cucks arm us.

The Constitution say nothing, except welcome to the fascist shit show, if you can keep it.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/09/28/the-legal-fight-awaiting-us-after-the-election

I will say I'm puzzled by all the attention paid to Ivanka's consulting contract. Sure, it's a deduction for the Trump Organization, but it's also taxable income to her. So what's the big deal? My guess is that she too has enough scams to not pay much tax, so it's dodging gift/estate tax, but I don't know.

Good point. This would also make sense, from a self-enrichment angle, if DT was paying her by plundering a non-recourse entity, i.e. a leveraged company in which the debt isn't personally guaranteed. You pull the money out, pay the tax and stiff the creditor. Do-able and 60% of money you borrowed but don't have to pay back is better than nothing, if that's the way you approach business.

Was it a joint tax return?

I have no illusions about DT's business ethics. A lot of questions as to who would lend him money, but no illusions about him.

3.(Related to 2) Trump has an army of lawyers and accountants fighting the IRS at every turn. That lets him get away with a lot.

Maybe. Lawyers and accountants are 'cash and carry' particularly when representing a dead beat. He will have to pay them up front and that will be hundreds of thousands a month in litigation that will never end. If he's out of cash and out of credit, he's also out of support.

But still President.

I love the quoted tweet from LGM: "Whomst among us has not written off $70k in coiffure related business expenses?"

It would be so funny if only ...

It's not that any of this is a surprise, but when it's just sitting there in front of us? Yes, I know, it has been sitting there in front of us.

I give up. No, I'm still working to win in November, but I give up on anyone who isn't just really working hard to get rid of him. (Truth told, I guess I gave up on them long ago.)

As always, it’s a cult.
Stock it to the libs is the core tenet. Everything else is negotiable.

Trump is a carnival barker whose latest act us Stick It To The Libs. And the rubes are hooked.

They don’t care about what happens backstage. They live the show.

Autocorrect is a communist plot

Referring back to ‘Tactics’, I think this just about nails it.
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/09/how-debate-bully/616461/

"They live the show."

I've long thought that "reality TV" would bring down civilization.

Nuke it from orbit.

Is Trump a hopeless businessman who usually pays little or no income tax because he loses money?

Or is he a tolerably successful businessman who usually pays little or no income tax because he cheats?

My guess is that his losses are mostly genuine. But of course he will have cheated anyway.

The latest "gotcha" coming from certain media outlets and pundits is that Trump really paid $1M in 2016 and $4.2M in 2017. Well, yes, but after filing for an extension and applying a $9.7 million worth of business investment credits, his taxes for each of those two years were reduced to $750, and he has a pot of money sitting with the IRS to pay future taxes.

I would assume there's some scenario whereby he could get that money back from the IRS as a refund. So, while he did send the IRS the money, only $1500 ended up being used toward his 2016 and 2017 tax bills. The rest is still his.

But, since he sent the IRS a bunch of money, that's what they're saying he "paid." Yet he can somehow still use that same money to pay the IRS again.

Is Trump a hopeless businessman who usually pays little or no income tax because he loses money?

See

Sorry. Hit "post" instead of preview.

Is Trump a hopeless businessman who usually pays little or no income tax because he loses money?

I think he is a hopeless businessman. I thought so before the tax information came out, and I now realize he was even worse than I imagined.

See here for one example of his ineptitude.

Since the thread is about business practices (broadly speaking), and so is this article, I thought I'd just put it here as a parable and a cautionary tale all at once.

Tech platforms are used to commit crimes all the time, but Zea’s experience is something new: being asked to commit a crime to protect the platform itself, or at least protect the executives running it. Balk — as one of her colleagues did — and you’re fired. Go along with the plan, trusting that the ex-police captains on your team know the difference between right and wrong, and your fate might be much worse.

“I don’t know when I’ll ever trust an employer again — or when an employer will ever trust me,” Zea said.

Wenig and Wymer have no such worries. In June, Wenig was reelected to the board of General Motors, a position that pays $317,000 a year. Mary Barra, GM’s chief executive, called the cyberstalking scandal “regrettable” but noted “it didn’t involve any GM business.”

Wymer has a new job, as chief executive of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Silicon Valley. The chair of the board said the nonprofit was “aware” of what happened at eBay, but believes Wymer is “a leader with integrity” and was the unanimous choice for the job.

A tweet from the organization announcing his hiring included as a hashtag Wymer’s signature phrase: Whatever It Takes. For the children of Silicon Valley in the bleak year 2020, that’s the new Golden Rule.

The parable is about how the little people get punished, as usual, and the high-flyers just get moved to different lucrative positions. The cautionary tale is, be careful what you say online. (Too late for us here. Heh.)

I think he is a hopeless businessman. I thought so before the tax information came out, and I now realize he was even worse than I imagined.

I think that basically he's even worse than any of us can imagine. Whether as a businessman or as a human being.

Some levels of awful are just too far outside our experience for our imaginations to come up with them. Maybe Lovecraft could manage it; not us.

The Eldritch Deplorable.

His views on race seem pretty Lovecraftian, to be sure. Too bad the creeping evil he serves seems to be entirely mundane and terrestrial. Think I'd prefer it to be a cosmic horror from beyond time and space. At least that has better cinematography.

C4 News tonight, further to that huge leak from the Trump 2016 campaign database about 200 million individuals: whereas last night they dealt with methods to deter 3.5million African Americans from voting, and interviewed some of those very people, tonight they are dealing with the white people, who rather than being classed in the Deterrence category, are classed in the Persuadable category. They're interviewing some of those people, and looking at the ads being targetted at them in this campaign. Unsurprising newsflash: the ads mainly show scenes of horrific violence and chaos, supposedly due to the Dems, and approved by Biden who "takes a knee".

C4 News take David Carroll his data, finally. Despite court decisions in his favour against Cambridge Analytica, as shown in the Great Hack, he never got it til now.

Despite CA saying on the record they didn't do psychographics for the Trump campaign, there they are in the file on David Carroll. Obama releases a clip saying attempts are being made to prevent AAs from voting. The Trump White House responds to C4 News that their report is fake news. C4News ends their broadcast tonight: "It's not."

In defence of Lovecraft one has to say that his (indeed highly unsavoury) racism was mainly on paper and that it was not reflected in his personal behaviour towards people he came in contact with (and he was married to a woman of Eastern European Jewish origin*).
Jabbabonk is personally vile with no need for racist theory.

*that the marriage did not last had other reasons, mainly that she was a big city girl and he was a small town guy who could not cope with life in New York. They had to lie to the judge and invent personal differences to get a legal divorce.

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/what-if-the-elections-office-has-to-quarantine-officials-are-training-for-nightmare-scenarios

Expect an avalanche of calls, emails, and messages to election officials and ballot-counters across the country from anonymous subhuman, domestic conservative movement operatives and their malignant co-conspirators abroad spreading false information about Covid infections among election staff.

Some of those threats may come from rogue conservative election "officials" who will have deliberately infected themselves with the virus in time to declare their infection on election day or afterward in order to disrupt or cancel the vote tallies.

Also expect the tens of thousands of vermin conservative election thieves converging on voting places across the country on election day to spread false pandemic outbreak news and other lies to prevent voters from exercising their God-given (not Marty-given) franchise.

Expect the White house to personally (he's already done it) in coming weeks issue warnings about ballot drop-off boxes, as we employ successfully, legally, and without issue in Colorado, being a prime transmission vector for Covid-19, even though we know the prime vectors for the spread of the pandemic are republicans and their children, who have been and will be working to contract the virus, especially for election day.

Herman Cain and other conservative filth miscalculated by deliberately becoming infected and dying, good riddance, too soon before the election.

I expect they hadn't consulted the science regarding infection time lines, being the fake Christian God's dumbass wanna-be murderers they were.

If there was ever a time in American history to adhere to NRA and republican conservative bullshit regarding the carrying of loaded weapons in public in order to exercise your vote, this is it.

Think of every Republican you come in contact with as Zimmerman thought of Trayvon Martin, except what is being carried is not Skittles.

Not tuning in to the debate tonight, as I'm insulted that Biden has chosen to debate EVIL, as if America is up for bid via the currency of whoever fashions the best one-line zinger in bankrupt bullshit America.

The only debate going on should be Trump conning his executioners into granting him one last tweet before the bullets fly.

Instead I've made a nice salad of razor blades, hemlock buds, and pangolin scales napped in a novachok-bleach-sanitizer dressing for dinner.

Maybe take in a few innings of the playoffs and then off to drift to sleep to the dulcet gasoline-powered whinings of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre".

Both Satan and God are trump supporters:

https://digbysblog.net/2020/09/a-shamelessly-hypocritical-movement-in-every-way/

There's something to this, I think.

https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2020/09/29/the-new-york-times-confirms-trump-is-a-genius-422837

Excerpt:

What we learned from Trump’s taxes does suggest he possesses an astonishing gift which could reasonably be called “genius” — if you accept that as a descriptive word rather than a term of praise.

Genius, in this context, means something more than “very smart.” It means an ability to see connections and possibilities in circumstances that even people who are smart in conventional ways do not see. There are some people who possess genius of a certain type in certain arenas who might actually qualify as kind of dumb when it comes to more conventional intelligence of the sort measured in conventional arenas.

Trump’s genius, as illuminated by the Times, isn’t simply for self-promotion but for harnessing self-promotion to a coherent and comprehensive strategy for personal gain. Profit gets paid out in multiple ways: money, of course, but also reputational currency. The taxes also highlight his ability to fully merge his personal and professional lives, in which houses and jets and hair stylists become business expenses (in some cases suspect ones). It is a simple fact that in this intersection of self-promotion, self-enrichment, and self-protection Trump has a mind that operates at a different level than most, and he has used it to fashion a historic career.


he has used it to fashion a historic career.

as did John Gotti, Benito Mussolini, and Vlad the Impaler.

some say genius, some say a pathological selfishness and refusal to be constrained by the basic standards of decency and ethics that most people live by.

maybe genius, maybe just pathology and an eye for the main chance.

we report, you decide.

Scare-quoted "genius" that isn't a good thing. Schemer savant, maybe.

If being highly skilled at self-promotion, and being willing to lie, cheat, and steal without limit makes one a genius, then OK.

Business geniuses don't routinely overpay for assets that stroke their ego, and which they don't know how to manage, yet that plus the dishonesty is Trump's career.

It's true the tax information doesn't tell us everything, but remember that could just as well be because things are worse than they appear rather than better. If I had to bet, that's the way I'd go.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)