Back in the first week of January, I wrote a little something about how the reparation money paid to claimants should be tax free. In the hard times across the Gulf Coast, the last thing people need is to budget 25% of their payment to the IRS, especially people receiving the quick payment: 25% of $5000 dollars to an individual or $25,000 dollars to business. Well, it would appear the IRS has confirmed that yes, these monies are indeed taxable and Gulf Coast residents are going to have to pay up.
In one of the more amusing quotes to come out of the Gulf I’ve read recently:
“Therefore, the IRS said, it’s important that people, if possible, budget for the tax liability on their payments from the claims fund.”
“Budget for their tax liability.”
Hmm, what are the words I’m searching for…they’re there, hang on, it’s early…wait, wait…they’ll come…tip of my tongue…umm, oh yeah, okay…I remember, here they are:
Go to hell.
Barack, Congress, all of you who are doing nothing about this…go to hell.
First off, you go and give the wealthy ridiculous tax breaks that won’t filter down, never do…haven’t since Reagan came up with the ridiculous notion in the first place, and then you start talking spending cuts due to the budget deficit that will wind up hitting a lot of poor people, the poorer people in the Gulf, from Pell Grant cutbacks to LIHEAP energy assistance to community block grants. Yeah, you jack-asses start talking about “tough choices.”
Every time some idiot politician starts talking about tough choices, the one thing you can be sure of is how the tough choices won’t affect them personally. “Tough choices” is nothing more than a BS term used to try to show empathy or demonstrate an understanding of how they know the realities their choices are about to affect.
And that’s a lie.
If they did, they wouldn’t do it.
Tax increases for the wealthy…that’s a tough choice for the politician…because that is a reality they understand. Cutting services which cuts the money the poor have to work with is outside their present understanding so they should stop pretending it isn’t. And sure, Congress can march out one or two congress people who came from “hardscrabble” backgrounds and “working class” neighborhoods to refute that point, much in the way climate deniers march out a few isolated scientists to say that the weather ain’t changing because of man-made effects, or some buffoon who says climate change won’t happen because God won’t let it.
Screw your exceptions, we’re talking the rule.
And the rule is the spending cuts will affect thousands of residents across the Gulf Coast who got slammed by this fucking oil spill and now, after they get meager payouts from the GCCF, so meager the Justice Department is writing letters criticizing the amounts and the President, and Congress won’t even call of the IRS dogs? Somebody’s losing their house and car and because they are so sick and tired of dealing with Feinberg and the GCCF, so they take a quick payment or a final payment that doesn’t even come close to repairing their losses now or in the future and government officials come calling demanding 25% of it because it is taxable income?
And you, Barack, Congress, you do nothing about it. Implying it is okay. Implying it is fair or reasonable or, implying you don’t care either way.
A simple suggestion: if you don’t want to give up your precious money from the Gulf Coast, why not pressure your newest buddy, Bob Dudley into adding enough to every payment to cover the taxes on said payment. If someone gets the average, a measly $11,000 dollars, make BP make Feinberg pay them an additional $3,000 dollars to cover the taxes. Tell them to do it or you’ll go elsewhere to get military fuel. Tell them to do it or you’ll prevent them from receiving any new oil leases. Tell them to do it if they really want to “make things whole.”
Or do nothing.
In the Gulf Coast, Obama, doing nothing is the one thing everyone knows you know how to do. Like G.W. Bush during Katrina, you go on your merry way…with grim expression, a serious nod of the head, making “tough choices.”
Doing nothing isn’t tough.
Doing nothing to stop the IRS from taking what little money Gulf Coast residents have been able to squeeze out of the fund?
That ain’t tough at all.
Have a nice day.