Comments about ‘Obama, Congress consider cutting deductions for donations to charities, churches’

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Published: Tuesday, Oct. 18 2011 9:00 a.m. MDT

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Sasha Pachev
Provo, UT

JoeBlow - our family would be an example, more or less, of your family 2. We have seven kids ages 12 through 1. We home school. We have never used any kind of welfare. We do everything we can to follow the advice of our church leaders to be self-reliant. How much taxes do you think we should pay?

Salt Lake City, UT

"I pay taxes, I donate to charity. It was never your money. "

Actually... it was (if your means gov't). You just said you pay your taxes. Alright, you paid your income tax. Then you file your tax return and deduct your charitable donations. That's you asking the gov't to give you money back. Simple as that. No different than asking for other deductions from the gov't or asking the gov't for welfare because you qualify for it. That money you're asking the gov't to give you so you can give it to charity... that's being charitable with other people's money.

"If no deduction is given for Charitable contributions, the result will be less charitable giving, since I have less. "

Notice how in your example your tax burden went from 2 million to 400k. That 2 million is what your hypothetical tax rate was. That IS the gov'ts money that you want to turn around and give to charity which is fine and all but... you just decreased federal revenues 1.6 million. You just increased the federal deficit 1.6 million. You just handed future generations the bill. You spent their money.

Out There in, WI

I'm seeing a recurring theme in these articles about charitable deductions: if your motives for giving are not 100% pure (giving soley for the purpose of helping those in need, without regard to any benefit that may accrue to you)there is somehow something wrong with it and you shouldn't do it. Does every donation have to be one that hurts? Instead of complaining about why people donate, we should just continue to encourage people to donate, as has been the case in the tax code for years and years. Its a good policy and for those who feel the government is in their life too much, it sure beats the government's inefficient and corruption laden efforts to help those in need.

Deep Space 9, Ut

To "JoeBlow | 11:35 a.m." but you forget that your buddy FDR designed SS to require the labor of those 6 kids to pay for YOUR retirement. While those kids represent a tax deduction of $1000/child right now, in the future, if those children earn the same amount as their parents, they will result in 500% increase in SS funding compared to the family with only 1 child.

So, at the end of your life, when those 6 kids are paying for your SS and Medicare for 20 to 25 years of your retirement, are you going to complain that they didn't pay enough taxes or are you going to be glad that the system didn't collapse because everybody only had 1 child.

Remember, the government gives tax breaks to encourage desired behavior.

Also, there is nothing stoping the family with 1 child from donating 10% of their income to charity.

Why do you want to force others to conform to your ways?

Brother Chuck Schroeder
A Tropical Paradise USA, FL

TAX the untra rich Church's and all deductions for donations to charities,


BECAUSE - I'm not part of the ReaganBushClintonBush-villes economics!.

That's Utah's own Sen Hatch and Lee and their government's inefficient corruption plots in back stage deals.

Salt Lake City, UT

"it sure beats the government's inefficient and corruption laden efforts to help those in need. "

The gov't is fairly efficient actually, and I don't think charity is any better. Let's take an example most everyone here would be familiar with... the LDS church. Now, I don't need to be told the church has a significant contribution to charitable type things. But what about tithing? Tithing is primarily upkeep of the church. It's the fast offerings, humanitarian aid, the continuing education fund, the missionary trip funding thing, that thing mentioned during conference about flying people in isolated areas of the world to temples, and so on and so forth; that is the real charity work in the church and there's a lot of it. All of those including tithing can be deducted and I'm sure tithing is the largest contributor to church income and I'd bet that the majority of members report tithing for deduction purposes. Because of that, the church is operating at less than 50% charitable efficiency which is lower than the gov't. So I'm not so sure the claim that private organizations are more efficient is accurate.

Wiley Old School

atl134: The money that is withheld from one's paycheck is an estimate of possible tax, not the actual tax. It's when you file your taxes that you pay your tax. Getting a refund for over-estimating your withholding during the year is NOT asking the government to "give money back." You can shift your estimated withholding substantially, one way or the other, depending on how you fill out your W-9. You must not be among those paying taxes if you don't understand this simple fact

JoeBlow: What you are missing is that the parents of Family #1 will need much of the FICA revenue from the children of Family #2 to pay for their social security and other benefits they will receive as they age (the FICA they paid over the years plus the FICA from their single child won't begin to cover their benefits

Cedar Hills, UT


my 10% to my church will continue no matter what however that isn't the case for many other folks especially for those that aren't millionaires and want to give to charity but also need to be rewarded for that generous act by government that they pay taxes to. Isn't it the government that is supposed to look out for its people and what better way than to incent people to contribute to the charity of THEIR CHOICE. You seem to want to take away that choice and hand it over to old trusty Uncle Sam.

Iowa City, IA


What you fail to take into account is that these organizations are lightening the burdens placed on the government. In the example that you highlight, the key question is: would the government be able to provide the same needed help for less than $1.6 million?

If these organizations are able to provide the help more efficiently than the government, then the government is receiving $1.6 million less, but would avoid having to pay, say, $2 million to meet the same needs. This would result in a greater loss for the government than if it allowed a charity to take care of the needy.

Simply collecting more money doesn't make a difference in how well off you are if your expenditures increase at a faster rate.

So, what do you think? Has the government proven that it can operate more efficiently than the private market when it comes to taking care of the needy?

Clearfield, UT

It appears to me that this is a potential maneuver by the government to create more dependency upon the government...to see the government increasingly as the be-all and end-all of all our troubles.

If we can get the private sector to have a harder time taking care of each other, we can justify the need for government programs to take care of those who are struggling and we can justify taking more and more taxes to do so. Ultimately, this just creates more slavery of the American People, both those in need and those who are forced to give up their substance in order to help those in need.

Anti Bush-Obama
Washington, DC

This is how much Obama cares for all of us I'll tell you that.

Miami Area, Fl

Sasha "We have seven kids ages 12 through 1. We home school."

I commend you. you are certainly the exception. However, you still pay significantly less taxes than Family one. Could you explain to Family one as to why they should pay more than you?

To those who claim the Social Security angle.

I agree that something needs to change. But,an ever increasing population is certainly a bigger problem than Social Security.

West Haven, Utah

Thanks, Wiley Old School and Hawkeye79. These were the exact points I was going to make in responding to atl134. You've made them so well there is nothing left for me to say. You both get a 'Recommend' from me.

Saint George, UT

Revenue is not the problem. Spending on non-essential and entitlement programs is the problem. If charitable people give less to private charities, that shortfall falls back on the government to help those receipients. In order to meet that shortfall the government will need to tax even more. Government will never be able to tax enough to make up for the efficiency of the private sector. Forced charity through taxation has never and will never work. Planned government programs always lead to a lose of freedom for everyone.

There You Go Again
Saint George, UT

For starters:

"...Under pressure to deal with the face of burgeoning national deficit, Congress has been considering more than a dozen different proposals to reduce or do away with tax deductions for donations to charity...".

Congress is considering more than a dozen proposals.

Will the DN give readers the "specifics" on the other 11 different proposals?

It would be great fun to bash the sponsors of those other proposals.


"...If the government does away with tax breaks for charitable contributions many worry donors will give less and needy people will go without...".

I, somehow, missed the part, in Malachi, where it "says" I should tithe, as an example, in order to obtain a tax break.

Thank you.

Howard Beal
Provo, UT

I have to look at this whether or not it will help people. I just don't see it...

Bountiful, Utah

Some of your "logic" in this post is completely amazing to me. We have conservatives who, on many many articles on DN, will post that the government is giving too many handouts, that people should not be entitled, that people should go to work ... blah blah blah. Yet when it serves your purposes, you are arguing that donations to charities should be deducted because otherwise the government will have to give more handouts. So here, you seem to be supporting the notion that someone give away freebies to those without and apparently would accept that the government might have to do that. Are you all flip floppers like your poster boy is?

Cedar Hills, UT


The thing you are not understanding is that Obama is using his social engineering tacticts to leave less money in the pocket of the individual at the end of the day. When that occurs those same individuals will have less to contribute to their church or charity. Whats more, you don't seem to understand how the disciples of Alinsky work...they want everybody to be in slavery to the central government. sabe?

USS Enterprise, UT

To "ClarkKent | 2:51 p.m." sorry, you are a liberal. It is well documented that liberals use their emotions to guide their understanding of the world. Conservatives have been shown to use logic for their understanding of the world.

See "The Worldview Problem for American Politics" at the University of Chicago by George Lakoff.

The article is quite balanced in its description of Liberals and Conservatives, and why they don't understand eachother.


My biggest fear in all of this is the possibility that Obama knows exactly what he's doing and believes it to be right. Scarier than if he had no clue and were at the helm, eh? I think he and his cronies know exactly what they're doing and they don't care. When the government fears the people there is liberty, when the people fear the government, there is tyranny!

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