This short video will inspire the sighted — what a time to be alive! — and could really improve the lives of the blind. The Orcam is not completely cheap — $2,500 or $3,500 — but, for those who need it, would seem to be a bargain.
Policy is not, at this stage, what people are concerned about with Trump — he is, as so many Republicans have said or signaled, simply unfit to be President. But I can’t resist pointing out Trump’s triply offensive promise Monday to eliminate the estate tax: “No family will have to pay the death tax. American workers have paid taxes their whole lives. It’s just plain wrong and most people agree with that. We will repeal it.”
First off, it’s grossly misleading — basically a lie. A scare tactic. Right now, no family has to pay the tax — 99.8% of estates, or some number like that, escape any taxation. The two-tenths of a per cent that do is essentially a rounding error. And it’s a rounding error that does not apply to “American workers,” none of whom, by the common understanding of “workers,” earns enough to amass an estate of more than $5.4 million. And it’s only to the extent one’s (or one’s and one’s spouse’s) estate exceeds $5.4 million (or $10.8 million (with a simple by-pass trust) that even a dime of estate tax is due. So it’s just bogus. And that’s offensive.
Second, the people within that tiny rounding error it would most benefit are billionheirs — like the Trumps* — who already arguably have it better than they should, given the way Republicans have swung the pendulum ever further in favor of the ultra-wealthy these past 35 years. And that’s offensive.
Finally, it’s just bad policy, both morally and in terms of economic productivity. As explained here, for example. And would hurt all the nonprofit organizations that rely in part on bequests.** Offense #3.
*Although I suspect they’re mere millionheirs, all his bragging notwithstanding.
**With the estate tax deduction for charitable gifts gone, the after-tax cost of giving would double. And when you double the cost of doing something, people do less of it.
Quote of the Day
To be absolutely certain about something, one must know everything or nothing about it.~Henry Kissinger
Request email delivery
- May 25:
The Truth Matters
- May 24:
The Pope: God Made You This Way
- May 23:
Travel Tip: Take Alexa WITH You?
- May 22:
Have You Already Seen This One?
- May 21:
How The Enlightenment Ends . . .
- May 18:
My Classmate Saved Stephen Hawking
- May 17:
Hi-Yo, Silver! (Unless You’re Poor)
- May 16:
Will On Pence
- May 15:
Mitch McConnell Speaks
- May 14:
From Greece To Iran
- May 25: