Camp David USA Tax Reform

Dave Camp

Offers Revamp of Tax Code

If the United States of America continues walking down this garden path, they will surely run out of breadcrumbs to return back to their origins of freedom, liberty & fraternity. 

The delightful garden of wealth and prosperity with the secure hedges and windbreaks of elm, oak and pine and where capitalism reigned supreme, will be behind them as the forest ahead is a thick and perilous maze where the rights enjoyed by many will be surrendered to a few. 

The complexities and challenges ahead will require a unique adroit dexterity in  leadership and good governance from those who have the aptitude and ability to live between vision and reality, to firstly identify the real challenges, to secondly source the effective solutions and to lastly implement the same.

When I lived in New York (2005-2009) I remember hearing on a daily basis God Bless America…now all I hear in an echoed call is

God Save America

BY DAVID LIGHTMAN AND KEVIN G. HALL

MCCLATCHY WASHINGTON BUREAU

WASHINGTON — The chairman of the Republican-led House of Representatives’ tax-writing panel proposed on Wednesday the first complete overhaul of the nation’s tax code since 1986, a plan that both political parties are likely to debate throughout this election year.

Chances are the effort will go nowhere in this Congress, a point conceded even by Republican leaders. But the 979-page blueprint, which includes collapsing individual tax brackets to 10 and 25 percent for virtually all taxable income and lowering corporate tax rates, allows both parties to argue that they’re champions of a simpler, fairer tax code.

Both sides recognize that the public is eager for a more understandable and sensible tax code. The issue also presents an opportunity for both parties to talk in reasonable terms about a big issue, the kind of dialogue often missing in ongoing debates about immigration, federal debt limits and spending cuts.

“This legislation does not reflect ideas solely advanced by Democrats or ideas solely advanced by Republicans,” said Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee Chairman and the author of the proposal.

The plan, he said, “recognizes that everyone is a part of this effort and can benefit when we have a code that is simpler and fairer.”

The White House found the plan a “constructive, specific proposal” that should trigger dialogue about how to proceed, said spokesman Josh Earnest. He cited several reasons for optimism, notably loophole closings and using revenue for infrastructure improvements.

The top Democrat on the Ways and Means Committee offered a similar view.

“Chairman Camp’s tax reform proposal opens up a discussion that Democrats have wanted to engage in on a bipartisan basis,” said Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich.

The Senate’s top Democratic and Republican tax writers issued a join statement that said, “We look forward to working with members in both chambers and on both sides of the aisle to move the conversation forward.” Republicans saw promise in using the plan to counter Democratic criticism that Republicans are too extreme and too partisan.

The Camp plan would narrow the seven current tax brackets into two. Individuals who earn less than $37,400 a year would pay a 10 percent tax rate on taxable income, as would joint filers with income below $74,800. Everyone else would pay a 25 percent rate.

In a bid to entice Democrats, who insist on higher taxes on the wealthy, the plan would have a 10 percent surcharge on individuals with adjustable gross incomes above $400,000 and joint filers above $450,000. It also would reduce how much mortgage interest could be deducted from taxable income for home loans of more than $500,000, and end the ability to deduct state and local taxes from a federal return.

The proposal would cut the corporate tax rate to 25 percent from 35 percent.

 

It would return the tax rate on capital gains, now at 20 percent, to the rate of ordinary income, which for most Americans would become 25 percent. But about 40 percent of capital gains and dividends could be excluded from taxation under the proposal.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said Tuesday that the plan had “no hope” of passing this year, while House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, was equally glum.

Boehner did favor the idea of collapsing tax brackets.

“To bring down rates, you clean out a lot of the garbage that’s in there and the special interest issues that are in there. And so I think we ought to have a real conversation about this, and this is the beginning of that conversation,” he said.

 

Interest groups reacted quickly to the Camp plan. The Private Equity Growth Capital Council, which represents well-heeled private-equity firms, criticized the proposal, which calls for rolling back tax law that allows the managers of these firms to have their earnings taxed not as wages but at the lower rate of investment income.

“It is so disappointing that Chairman Camp chose to single out private equity, real estate and venture capital investment by exacting a 40 percent tax increase that will discourage new investment,” the council said.

 

The proposed revamp also would change the way high-income earners can save for retirement. It would restrict them to Roth-style retirement accounts that use after-tax income – as opposed to pretax income, as is the case for the conventional 401(k) retirement plans held by many working Americans.

This change would affect 5 percent of the workforce, Camp said, and involves those who set aside more than $8,750 a year in tax-deferred accounts such as 401(k) plans and individual retirement accounts.

There’s less to that idea than there appears, cautioned Len Burman, a nationally recognized tax expert who’s a professor at Syracuse University.

“At best it’s just a timing gimmick. It’s a shift in the timing of revenue. It looks like we collect more right now, but we’re giving up more in the future,” he said.

That’s because conventional retirement accounts are taxed upon withdrawal in retirement, when there’s a large pot of money because of compounding gains. Roth IRAs involve after-tax income, sort of paying future taxes up front. They’re used to shelter income and lower estate taxes because they can be left alone and passed on to beneficiaries such as children after the account holder dies.

“Roths are really advantageous for super wealthy people, who are the people I have the fewest concerns about when it comes to retirement savings,” said Burman.

Lesley Clark contributed to this article.

 

SPEED TO MARKET 21ST CENTURY DEFENCE

ON GUARD UP TO SPEED SPEED TO MARKET

PUB_HTV_Progression_DARPA_2008_lg

There is only one country on the planet that can effectively deploy the necessary defence resources when and if so required. Some come close but only the United States of America is number one at speed to market. The largest retailer on the planet does it with such efficiency that other retailers try to adopt similar policy & procedure in the supply chain. Wal Mart adopted an approach that means that as soon as the transaction between the store and the customer is completed, the same item is being selected from a shelf in a warehouse somewhere in America to be placed into the supply chain to back on the shelf in that store for the customer to repeat the process the next day.

One questions the recent budget allocation for the DOD by the US Government and the contracts that have been awarded for the whole strategic defence policy beyond 2014. The deployment of resources as per the communication ( June 2012 circa) from Leon Panetta previous Secretary for Defence prior to Chuck Hagel, reflects the global pivotal shift that is occurring during Q1 of this century and the response by America to this change. The 60/40 Atlantic/Pacific reversal is estimated to be completed by 2020 and two areas of interest in global strategic defence analysis are R & D and the DOD acquisition of new technology and the systems and weapons upgrades.

Prognosticating, predicting or forecasting the global conflict scenarios is done by experts and by conspiracy theorists. There are only two reasons why there are across the board systems and weapons upgrades and new technology acquisitions by the DOD in America. Readiness capability and speed to market and being on guard in global geopolitical tension just in case the worse case scenario occurs in the world and the other is that of actual strategic resource capability and ease of deployment and speed to market with the next war.

I do hope that effective US Foreign Policy is capable of building functional global agreements and harmonious teamwork with all stakeholders in the prevention, mitigation and reduction of global conflict. The threat of the threat in possible interstate conflict is an old technique that is slowly being outdated as other countries defence capabilities in Q1 close in on America. The example below is just one of many that could have been selected. It was selected because many can relate to this type of aircraft and to highlight the heading.

"The Buff" Does its stuff

The $24.6 million agreement stipulates that Boeing will develop a modification to existing weapon launchers so the aircraft can carry smart weapons in the bomb bay, which will enable aircrews to use the B-52′s entire weapons capacity.

“With this modification, we’re converting the bomb bay from dropping just gravity-type bombs to releasing precision-guided weapons.” – Jennifer Hogan of Boeing Communications

“When you combine that ability with the B-52′s unlimited range with air refueling, you have an efficient and versatile weapon system that is valuable to warfighters on the ground,” said Scot Oathout, Boeing’s B-52 program director.

“This weapons capacity expansion joins the Combat Network Communications Technology program, a comprehensive communication upgrade that’s being installed on the aircraft, to give the warfighter even more flexibility.”

Boeing will produce three prototype launchers for test and evaluation. Initial capability is expected in March 2016, and potential follow-on efforts could add more weapons and allow a mixed load of different types of weapons.

Upon completion of the first phase of the upgrade, the B-52 will be able to carry two dozen 500-pound Joint Direct Attack Munitions or twenty 2,000-pound JDAMs. Later phases will add the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile and its extended-range variant, as well as the Miniature Air Launched Decoy and its jammer variant.

The bomb bay renovation will enable the B-52 to carry all of its weapons internally, thereby increasing fuel efficiency in flight. The modernization work will use parts from existing Air Force rotary launchers repurposed for conventional missions, as well as hardware and software already developed for the wing pylons.

Engineers from the B-52 Software Avionics Flight at Tinker are modifying the 1760 Integrated Weapon Bay Upgrade Ground Maintenance Computer Program to test the additional Integrated Weapon Interface Unit being added in the bay location on the B-52 in order to launch additional weapons from the weapons bay location.

In addition, engineers from the B-52 Software Avionics Flight are transitioning mission-planning software from a unix-based Mission Planning System to a Windows-based Joint Mission Planning System. The B-52 JMPS Unique Program Component v1.0 software release will include conventional mission planning support for B-52 Software Blocks 04 and 05.

It also adds capability for all variants of JDAM, JASSM and MALD at the bay location to support capability added by the 1760 IWBU program. Formal Qualification Testing will be accomplished by July 2014, and the software will fielded by July 2015.

The CONECT system will enable Stratofortress aircrews to send and receive information via satellite links, which will enable them to change mission plans and re-target weapons while in flight; currently, mission information must be uploaded to a B-52 before a flight.

In addition, pilots will be able to interact better with other aircraft and with ground forces.

Other improvements will include a state-of-the-art computing network with workstations at each crew position and an integrated digital interphone with increased capacity that will allow crew members to talk to each other on headsets equipped with noise-canceling technology.

The $76 million CONECT upgrade installation will be performed during programmed depot maintenance by the 565th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, while Boeing will provide the low-rate initial production of the first CONECT kits, along with spare parts and maintenance and service at Tinker.

By Mike W. Ray
72nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Chinese vs American Speed to Market

Speed to Market
Peace Rock Love

So Sincerely Sorry

Sorry is the Hardest Word

This is just a preamble to Gareth Evans piece – JAN 28, 2014 4

The word alone is such a powerful concept. Just the mention of these five letters in this combination increases the heart rate in either fear or in delight. There is much associated with this word and in this first quarter of the 21st Century have we evolved as humans and become self actualised for just a nanosecond of time, enough to turn on the light.

Sorry let me check that the energy source is green first before I turn on the light. Okay now that we are using solar power to write this post my conscious is clear and so there is no need for me to say sorry for using fossil fuels in this instance. If you are an academic or professional then read on with the understanding that this is not some intellectual discourse, pseudo or otherwise.

This idea of sorry being the hardest word to say is merely one way of viewing the word and the associated ideas that go with it. If we look at the concept and idea of the word, then may it be from the opposites of fear and delight (security). In the first instance it may be from a fear perspective that we associate and perpetuate the loathing for the use of the word. May be we have been biased in such a way that through multi-generational conditioning, fear is a sign of weakness or some form of subordinate positional stance.

Then there is the possibility that one can adopt an antipodean  stance through the association of ideas like, forgiveness (Mandela) or an apology to indigenous Australians (Aborigines). The idea of ‘sorry’ being something that is part  of bridge building, negotiations, conflict mediation and resolution that is empowering, gives strength and shows wisdom is another way of relating to this word.

Sorry, have you got the time to continue reading because I refuse to say sorry here for the verbose style of this post, because it is well imbued and part of the nature of the writer. It is far easier to say sorry and feign sincerity in our modern world. Sorry for tapping your telephone or for the accidental bombing of innocent civilians. Whatever, get over it and sorry.

Sorry for the Bombing

Sincere Sorry in Silence

Sorry is the Hardest Word

http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/gareth-evans-defends-sincere-apologies-as-an-essential-tool-of-international-relations#Fqv4wRsTIm6P3AJc.99

Sorry expressed sincerely as an expression of guilt or remorse and in recognition of sorrow.

I’m sorry I really do not know much about saying sorry nor saying please as they are associated with a weak position out of my own fear. 

Sincerely Sorry

Sincerely Sorry