In addition to your 2013 income tax, your first quarterly estimated 2014 tax payment is due today, if you have appreciable taxable income from which taxes are not withheld. Have a nice day.

And speaking of nice . . .

WHO ARE NICER THAN THE THAIS?

No one, I think.  (And I was actually there for three days 20 years ago, so I should know.)  Click here to start your day.  Three minutes.

S.E.C. NO EVIL

From Bloomberg News:

A trial attorney from the Securities and Exchange Commission said his bosses were too “tentative and fearful” to bring many Wall Street leaders to heel after the 2008 credit crisis, echoing the regulator’s outside critics. James Kidney, who joined the SEC in 1986 and retired this month, offered the critique in a speech at his goodbye party. . . .

The SEC has become “an agency that polices the broken windows on the street level and rarely goes to the penthouse floors,” Kidney said, according to a copy of his remarks obtained by Bloomberg News. “On the rare occasions when enforcement does go to the penthouse, good manners are paramount. Tough enforcement, risky enforcement, is subject to extensive negotiation and weakening.”

Kidney said his superiors were more focused on getting high-paying jobs after their government service than on bringing difficult cases. The agency’s penalties, Kidney said, have become “at most a tollbooth on the bankster turnpike.”

His March 27 remarks drew applause from the crowd of about 70 people, according to witnesses. In an interview, Kidney said he hadn’t heard any blowback from SEC officials. . . .

His speech bemoaned the lack of SEC enforcers who “believe in afflicting the comfortable and powerful.” . . .

In his speech, Kidney also hit the agency for using misleading statistics to showcase its enforcement efforts. The SEC should focus on the quality of its actions, rather than try to file as many as possible just to tout its record to lawmakers and the media, he said. “It is a cancer,” Kidney said of the agency’s use of numbers. “It should be changed.”

Kidney said in the interview that he will always be an SEC loyalist and was trying to offer constructive criticism that could help the agency. He said he wasn’t singling out any specific cases or officials in his comments. . . .

 

 

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