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Apparently, No One At Msnbc Pays Taxes

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Democrats are fond of accusing Republicans of being hypocrites on a variety of issues, but particularly when it comes to tax policy. The liberal comedian Bill Maher recently claimed that Republicans expose themselves to this critique when they champion the value of hard work and perseverance while simultaneously opposing the inheritance tax.

“If the tough love of cutting off free money for the poor is the right thing to do, how can we stand by and do any less for the Conrad Hiltons of the world? They’ve never known the dignity of work either,” Maher insisted recently. “Shouldn’t we be helping by taxing inheritance at 100 percent?”

Maher seems unaware that the estate tax primarily burdens middle-class Americans and not the truly wealthy who have the wherewithal to avoid that tax by investing in trusts. But Maher’s argument wasn’t designed to appeal to logic; it was more of a tribal grunt.

But at least Maher was trying to be funny – he is, after all, a comedian. By way of contrast, the gaggle of progressive hosts on MSNBC are deadly serious when they issue the oft-repeated charge that the GOP’s pro-growth tax policy preferences are interchangeably heartless, selfish, and quite possibly racist.

“Regressive taxation & tax-avoidance & union crushing & the financial corruption of legislation has fueled inequality more than hard work,” MSNBC host Touré opined on his Twitter accountin the winter of last year.

“Conservatives complain about takers but most red states get more from DC than they give ie [sic] takers,” he later remarked. “Most blue states give more than they get.”

For all his interest in altruism via tax policy, you would think he might pay his income taxes. Guess again.

“In September 2013, New York issued a state tax warrant to [Touré] Neblett and his wife, Rita Nakouzi, for $46,862.68. Six months later, the state issued an additional warrant to the couple for $12,849.87,”

Touré shouldn’t feel too bad about his outstanding debt to Uncle Sam. It seems quite a few of his fellow liberal agitators on that network have also failed to pay their taxes.

“Last month, New York filed a $4,948.15 tax warrant against Joy-Ann Reid, who serves as managing editor of theGrio.com and until earlier this year hosted MSNBC’s The Reid Report, and her husband, Jason,” National Review’s report continued. “Reid has called taxes on the wealthy ‘a basic fairness argument,’ also arguing for ‘smart spending and smart tax increases’ to create economic growth.”

Reid and Neblett were perhaps following weekend host and Wake Forrest University Professor Melissa Harris-Perry’s example. Earlier this year, the IRS slapped Perry and her husband with a $70,000 bill for delinquent taxes from 2013. As Jazz observed, the fact that she was aware that she owed back taxes for over a year did not stop her from mocking Republicans like Sam Brownback for cutting his states personal tax burden and failing to see it result in booming economic growth.

“Filing my taxes,” Perry lamented in 2010. “Can I just say that with what I owe it is freaking miracle & an act of solidarity that I am still a Democrat?” After apparently being subjected to a whirlwind of anger from her liberal fans, Perry recanted. “Thanks tweeps for the reminders of how many of you are struggling with unemployment or underemployment. Will pay my taxes with a smile.”

But this is all small time. Politics Nation host Rev. Al Sharpton has refined the art of tax dodging to a science. “So far, every for-profit enterprise started by Al Sharpton and known to National Review Online has been shut down in at least one jurisdiction for failure to pay taxes, a review of public records in New York and Delaware reveals,” National Review reported in February.

Records show that Sharpton’s beleaguered for-profit entities often overlap and intertwine, some sharing ties with the reverend’s nonprofit organization, National Action Network. Their financial records are copious, confusing, and sometimes outright bizarre, and together, they depict persistent financial woes for Sharpton, who also personally owes New York State nearly $596,000, according to active tax warrants.

“Today, Mr. Sharpton still faces personal federal tax liens of more than $3 million, and state tax liens of $777,657, according to records,” The New York Times revealed last November. “Raw Talent and Revals Communications owe another $717,329 on state and federal tax liens.”

But according to state officials, his balance on the state liens is actually $220,000 greater now than when they were first filed during the years 2008 through 2010. A spokesman for the State Department of Taxation and Finance said state law did not allow him to provide any further details.

You would think that Sharpton would be more cautious about criticizing Republican tax policy given his own indiscretions. You would be wrong.

“He specifically talked about tax credits to the middle class. She warmed us all up with the bread bags around her feet,” Sharpton said following 2015’s State of the Union address and the Republican response delivered by Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA). “He’s not talking about raising taxes for those with the bread bags, he’s talking about raising taxes for the rich. So how do you go from bread bags to defending the top 1 percent not having to pay taxes?”

The irony meter was positively shattered in 2012 when Sharpton’s network aired a promotional spot in which he decried the GOP’s tax policies as so harmful and anachronistic that they are of a piece with Jim Crow laws. “It was a time it was acceptable women couldn’t vote and blacks were in the back of the bus,” Sharpton insisted. “A lot of things were acceptable–until we stopped accepting it.”

MSNBC’s hosts would be well-served by perusing a dictionary in search of the definition of the word hypocrisy. Apparently, the network’s hosts don’t exactly practice what they preach when it comes to coughing up their due to the federal government. If anyone was tuning in to that network for the hosts’ grasp of fiscal policy or stellar ethics rather than a daily dose of confirmation bias, they might have to think twice.

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It's not the amount of people that got caught for me. It's this constant sniping between ordinary people on these 'gotchas'. It's like every time a republican or democrat catches the other side doing something wrong, it's like see, see how evil they are!

Taking sides and staying firmly attached to a politically ideology is no good at all. Especially from us ordinary people who lose the most. Divide and conquer. We don't need a foreign country to invade and destroy us, we are doing it ourselves.

smile.png End of my politics for the day.

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I think a problem with this story is no context of the tax delinquency. To say someone owed $70K in back taxes could be because the person claimed an exemption that the IRS disagreed with. And depending on how it shakes out, that $70K could be valid or not. I also scoff at the notion that middle class people take the burden of estate tax due to not having the use of trusts at their disposal. It is pretty easy to create trusts. If you believe that the middle class bears that brunt, then create a limit of say $500-$1Million, and every thing after that is 100%

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Or that it was actually 3 employees of MSNBC, and not EVERYONE at MSNBC.

FFS, I continue to expect more from you


Sarcasm is lost on many people, in some cases more than others, because they may be missing part of a complex set of cognitive skills based in specific parts of the brain.

A new study by Israeli psychologists, using patients with damage to different parts of their brains, details an "anatomy of sarcasm" to explain how the mind puts sharp-edged words into context.

The psychologists write in the May issue of the journal Neuropsychology that for sarcasm to register, the listener must grasp the speaker's intentions in the context of the situation. This calls for both sophisticated social thinking and appreciating a "theory of mind," that different people think different thoughts.

"To detect sarcasm, irony and jokes, and to better understand what people mean when they talk, we must have empathy," said researcher Simone Shamay-Tsoory of the University of Haifa and lead author of the study.

The right hemisphere of the brain generally handles emotional processing, and the prefrontal cortex -- the part of the brain just behind the eyes and forehead -- deals with personality and social cues.

So the researchers expected that people with damage to the right frontal lobe of the brain would have the most difficulty comprehending sarcasm.

To test this, they did experiments with 25 patients with damage to the prefrontal cortex, 16 patients with damage to the posterior lobe of the brain and 17 healthy controls.

All were read brief scripts presented in both a sarcastic and literal vein.

For instance, in the sarcastic situation, a man arrives at work and instead of starting his job, sits down to rest. His boss notices his behavior and says: "Joe, don't work too hard!" -- meaning, of course, just the opposite.

Then, in a neutral counterpart, Joe arrives at work and immediately goes full speed ahead, and his boss cautions him: "Joe, don't work too hard!"

Following each presentation, the researchers asked a factual question to check if the subject understood the story, and an "attitude" question to check if he or she appreciated the boss' true meaning. If they got the facts of the story right, but the attitude wrong, they got an "error" score for identifying sarcasm.

To measure the ability to have empathy and infer another person's thoughts, the researchers read another set of anecdotes like this: Two boys in a school bathroom talk meanly about another boy, who suddenly emerges from a stall, where, unknown to the first two boys, he was listening.

The researchers then asked the participants questions such as whether the boys said something they shouldn't have and why they said it.

The patients with prefrontal lobe damage had difficulty comprehending the sarcasm as well as feeling empathy, while the other two test groups had no such problems. And those who had damage in the right rear part of the prefrontal cortex had the most faulty "sarcasm meters." The worse the damage was, the greater the impairment.

Shamay-Tsoory said that damage in each region of the network "can impair (understanding of) sarcasm, because if someone has a problem understanding a social situation, he or she may fail to understand the literal language. Thus, this study contributes to our understanding of the relationship between language and social cognition."

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