Professors launch website encouraging people to donate their tax cut savings to charity

posted at 5:15 pm on December 29, 2010 by Allahpundit

The problem, it seems, is that even in the midst of a recession “the wealthy continue to prosper.” The AP reports:

“Extending the tax cuts for the very wealthiest Americans is frankly unconscionable,” Yale Law School professor Daniel Markovits said Wednesday. With the website’s help, “donors can pledge their money to support the kinds of programs that will help families, create jobs, and set the country moving toward a just prosperity,” the professors said in announcing the initiative.

Markovits, Yale political scientist Jacob Hacker, and Cornell law professor Robert Hockett started the campaign. Hacker is co-author of “Winner Take All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer — and Turned Its Back on the Middle Class.”

The three recommend giving to groups such as Habitat for Humanity, Children’s Aid Society and Salvation Army that they say promote fairness, economic growth and a strong middle class. They say the contributions could replicate good government policy and, in effect, draft the government as a funding partner when the donation is tax deductible.

“The collective giving together becomes almost a kind of shadow fiscal policy,” Markovits said.

Fun fact about Hacker: He’s been called “the godfather of the public option.” I have no objection to charitable donations, whatever the motive for them might be, but I do have two questions about their suggested list of recipients. One: If this is all about “economic growth” and job creation, why limit the list to charities? Last year we dropped almost $800 billion of taxpayer money on, ahem, “shovel-ready projects” to stimulate the economy. If that’s the way to kickstart hiring, why not direct our tax cut savings to similar projects instead of to the Salvation Army? Granted, donations of that sort wouldn’t be tax deductible, but that’s a small price to pay for absolution of liberal guilt over one’s paycheck. Besides, wouldn’t it be comforting to know that “Jamming for Dollars” and other worthy stimulus projects are getting another cash infusion?

Two: Isn’t there one very special organization missing from their list? These guys didn’t launch their website because they’re worried that people aren’t donating enough to charity; they’re aggrieved because people aren’t “donating” enough to the government. But there’s an easy way to solve that, thanks to the Treasury Department: You could … donate to the government! Yes, really! There was a splashy blogosphere meme about that last year and everything. In fact, the feds now even have a handy online donation page for your convenience. Donations are, it should be noted, earmarked for paying down the national debt, not for flushing down the stimulus toilet, but I’m sure that could be tweaked with a little progressive grassroots pressure on the White House. There’s nothing keeping that tax cut dividend in your pocket (and if you use the calculator on the site, you’ll see that it’s not just “the rich” who are getting one). So c’mon. Dig deep.


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Or you could hire someone. That would be a very direct stimulus.

MochaLite on December 29, 2010 at 5:18 PM

Seriously. Treat yourself to hiring a maid service or a lawn service with your “tax savings” if you really don’t want your money. You get a clean house and a trim lawn, and someone who needs the income gets to earn it. Win-win. And you don’t lose 70 cents on every dollar for having it go through the government first.

aero on December 29, 2010 at 7:25 PM

Those professors are not Socialists, they are just a little more equal than the rest of us…

rgranger on December 29, 2010 at 7:28 PM

Markovits, Yale political scientist Jacob Hacker, and Cornell law professor Robert Hockett started the campaign

They could forgo their own salary, benefits, & union dues and donate the money to the Treasury. At the very least, the profs should insist that Yale & Cornell offer FREE tuition to ALL middle-class students!

TN Mom on December 29, 2010 at 7:41 PM

Hmmm were are the libs and their response to these guys pushing their morals on the rest of us?

crickets

CWforFreedom on December 29, 2010 at 7:41 PM

These people are retarded.

therightwinger on December 29, 2010 at 7:44 PM

If this is savings, then I propose the following:

1. We pass a new income tax law, setting additional surcharges of one billion dollars per year on every college professor, to take effect January 1, 2012.

2. Late in December of 2011, we’ll pass a new law repealing those surcharges. Since the law said they were going to have to pay those surcharges, college professors have now “saved” a billion dollars per year.

3. Being that college professors are so civic-minded, they won’t mind if we expect them to donate, say, 10% of that savings to proper causes like paying down the national debt? Surely they can get by on the 900 million per year in savings that we just gave them! What are they, greedy?

VekTor on December 29, 2010 at 6:49 PM

Too complicated.

The way I figure it, all these people who are complaining that they’re rich and should pay more have just given their permission for the government to confiscate their wealth.

So, they get what they want (their wealth is redistributed), while people who don’t want a tax increase get what they want. Win-win.

malclave on December 29, 2010 at 7:46 PM

I agree with someone else who said it’s easy to pledge donations when you know you’ve got tenure and a job and security for basically the rest of your life…for the rest of us it’s not a given. I give, but I won’t give at the suggestion of an elite professor.

scalleywag on December 29, 2010 at 7:47 PM

They could forgo their own salary, benefits, & union dues and donate the money to the Treasury. At the very least, the profs should insist that Yale & Cornell offer FREE tuition to ALL middle-class students!

TN Mom on December 29, 2010 at 7:41 PM

The median income in the united states for families is around 45000-50000. I think they should live on this amount…you know if they really cared.

CWforFreedom on December 29, 2010 at 7:47 PM

Yeah, it’s great to feel good about ones’ self by tossing a bum a few bucks to “kill the pain.” A steady stream of big-hearted chumps is what lets him keep living irresponsibly. I’ll bet his kids would rather have dad quit begging, get a job and support them.

Cicero43 on December 29, 2010 at 6:56 PM

Oh please. These people are not getting a job with or without my $5. It’s my $5 I’ll spend it as I see fit and if I want to contribute to his lifestyle, so be it. You’re no different in your attack on me than these moron professors telling me how I should spend my money.

angryed on December 29, 2010 at 7:48 PM

Guys, these professors are credentialed intellectuals at Ivy League schools! I’m sure Juan Williams would consider them to be smarter than Sarah Palin. We should give them all our money and trust them implicitly to know better than we do who really needs it.

aero on December 29, 2010 at 7:49 PM

Since charity begins at home, I’m looking forward to a couple of vest pocket pistols so I can have a collection of them.

Plus ammo.

And cleaning supplies.

And I donate to the range, monthly! That is a very sociable place in need of donations…

ajacksonian on December 29, 2010 at 7:53 PM

Hey, I know what would be helpful, maybe a welfare Mom could stop having babies for a minute to save some tax dollars for the rest of us. I’d donate to my favorite animal shelter before I’d give it to undeserving freeloaders.

jaimo on December 29, 2010 at 7:57 PM

Maybe it would be better to go spend their money at a mom and pop local type business.

CWforFreedom on December 29, 2010 at 8:05 PM

There’s no fool like a professorial fool.

profitsbeard on December 29, 2010 at 8:05 PM

I was reading a newspaper comment section on this where one reader was explaining all the things he and his family were going to be able to, and do with their tax savings. This clown was dead serious, he listed off what he and his grown children had planned for their extra money. Of course they were not for the “tax cut” but were going to go ahead and spend the extra money as long as it passed. You really cant argue with ignorance, if after all the brooha over the extensions you still havnt figured out your tax rates are merely going to stay the same then there is really no hope left.

Koa on December 29, 2010 at 8:14 PM

Instead of a ‘Community Reinvestment Act’ we need the ‘Charitable Ranges of America’!

Why, oh why, has no one set up such an institution?

ajacksonian on December 29, 2010 at 8:18 PM

What an interesting concept-a simulated tax increase via voluntary socialism. In this way the Demon-Rats can turn a tax cut defeat into a tax raise victory.No wonder we’re in trouble when jackass college professors are appointed to high government positions.

MaiDee on December 29, 2010 at 8:35 PM

Let’s start by passing the hat around the faculty lounge. Let’s see how much they get. Stupid clowns.

Hummer53 on December 29, 2010 at 9:06 PM

Since there are no tax cuts I don’t think they are going to raise much money.

exceller on December 29, 2010 at 9:13 PM

From the AP excerpt integrated in the opening thread text;

Extending the tax cuts for the very wealthiest Americans is frankly unconscionable,” Yale Law School professor Daniel Markovits said Wednesday. With the website’s help, “donors can pledge their money to support the kinds of programs that will help families, create jobs, and set the country moving toward a just prosperity,” the professors said in announcing the initiative.

No! The tax bill did not extend tax cuts to anyone. They merely continued the current tax rate which was put into place during George W. Bush’s presidency.

There is nothing unconscionable at those who are at the upper bell curve of income earners not being assaulted by a class envy perpetrating elitist, selfish, arrogant, narcissistic bunch of ne’er do wells who have nothing better to do with their time than to stick their nose up someone else’s butt and try to tell other people what they can and cannot do, and try to foment hatred and violence agaist them.

This professor is engaging in hate mongering, violation of the rights enumerated in the US constitution, and promoting class envy. He and his ilk are putting US citizens in grave danger by their hate filled, cruel, vicious, condescending actions and words.

What IS unconscionable is what the professor and his ninja assassins are engaging in, demonizing good people, people who already pay the lion’s share of the income tax and other expernses.

It is highly likely that the professor’s paycheck is subsidized by Federal and State, read, “taxpayer” money.

I think it is unconscionable for a professor like this to receve more than $1,000 per month, especially if he is having his housing, medical insurance, dental insurance, and other compensations covered by the University and the State, and especially if he works less than 40 hours per week, ane most especially if he puts in less than 30 hours per week.

Since his earning more than $1,000 per months as a professor is unconscionable, I demand that he fork over any money in excess of that. I would accept that any income in excess of $1,000 per month be extracted from his paycheck before he revieves it, and that money be channeled to my wife and my savings account. We are raising four children and we can use the money. In fact, I’d be okay with 1/2 of the excess coming to us, and the rest divided between organizations which help women who are pregnant so they can avoid abortion, help families who have undergone crisis, children who are terminally ill, and soldiers who are injured, or families of soldiers who have died and are no longer alive to support their children and wives.

The professor also appears to be ignorant of the fact that many thousands of the more prosperous among us are already donating millions to charity, something the professor, Obama, Gore, et al, have not done, or likely do not do.

William2006 on December 29, 2010 at 9:24 PM

Just as soon as every one of these ass-hats that advocate the ‘rich’ should pay more, reduce their NET WORTH to $249,999.99, then I will take what they advocate with some validity. Until then, they are just another elitist mouthpiece trying to shift the attention to someone else while trying to boost their own self-importance.

belad on December 29, 2010 at 9:25 PM

Arrrrrrgggghhhhh. The Orwellian language abuse… it burns. THERE WERE NO TAX CUTS. We avoided a tax hike.

bitsy on December 29, 2010 at 9:34 PM

Perhaps an EDUCATED person could point out the Treasury Department’s website to Hacker.

Especially the CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE NATIONAL DEBT.

GarandFan on December 29, 2010 at 9:41 PM

The median income in the united states for families is around 45000-50000. I think they should live on this amount…you know if they really cared.

CWforFreedom on December 29, 2010 at 7:47 PM

They should organize a STOP THE SPENDING March on Washington.

TN Mom on December 29, 2010 at 9:59 PM

Most of these Ivy league yahoos are what I certainly, and most of middle America, certainly call wealthy. How about they open up their wallets to charities. And better yet, they should not claim one single deduction, but rather pay taxes on their entire gross income. If they really believe their rhetoric, they should kick in extra to meet the tax rate they think the rich should be paying.

flyfishingdad on December 29, 2010 at 10:50 PM

Hey, I know what would be helpful, maybe a welfare Mom could stop having babies for a minute to save some tax dollars for the rest of us. I’d donate to my favorite animal shelter before I’d give it to undeserving freeloaders.

jaimo on December 29, 2010 at 7:57 PM

+1. Maybe the profs could start a lobby for a 2-child limit to welfare benefits!

Dark-Star on December 29, 2010 at 10:51 PM

If their target audience is conservative recipients of the extension of the existing tax rates, then they are all set. Conservatives already give to charity at percentages, and dollar amounts, far in excess of what progressives give.

massrighty on December 29, 2010 at 10:55 PM

Howz bout we keep OUR money, and the federal gubmint has a garage sale on the excessive amount of federally owned land? They’d make money on the sale and local gubmints would get the money back on the property tax list.

TugboatPhil on December 29, 2010 at 11:27 PM

just prosperity

Are you kidding me? Um. Little Johnny, if you mow the lawn you get $10. If you work 3 times harder and longer (the edging, clean the gutters and pull the weeds) I’ll give you $25 and donate the rest of your profit to the neighbor boy down the street who only mowed the lawn.

Instead, he should be given all the money he has earned. Then encourage him to give of his own accord, or teach him to reinvest in and build his own business.

Stupid professors. I bet they went to schools where everybody got “A’s”.

LEBA on December 30, 2010 at 12:16 AM

Five bucks says you won’t see these professors donating anything.

p51d007 on December 30, 2010 at 12:17 AM

I suggest these professors lead by example…

First, they quit their unions and give up the life long pension and health care.

Next, they quit teaching and open a small business, using the Marxist/Socialist model that they teach…

… then, as the cash is sure to roll in, donate a large percentage to the bloated, incompetent, corrupt, and wasteful bureaucracy of their choice.

Problem solved!

(crickets chirping)

Seven Percent Solution on December 29, 2010 at 5:34 PM

How about these self-righteous professor’s aim their class warfare rants right here first:

(via Instapundit)

Highest-paid UC execs demand millions in benefits

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/12/28/MNDC1GUSCT.DTL#ixzz19ZQmean0

Three dozen of the University of California’s highest-paid executives are threatening to sue unless UC agrees to spend tens of millions of dollars to dramatically increase retirement benefits for employees earning more than $245,000.

….these pompous professors need to clean up their own back yards before whining about everybody else.

Baxter Greene on December 30, 2010 at 12:40 AM

That’s fine; do it. Of course most of the money would probably be donated to lefty charities.

Ward Cleaver on December 30, 2010 at 12:42 AM

Liberals, as a group, donate far less to charities than do conservatives. Let the libs increase their pittances.

Seabecker on December 30, 2010 at 1:20 AM

News flash – people who don’t live in the real world don’t know about the real world, get the facts wrong. Film at eleven.

Merovign on December 30, 2010 at 1:22 AM

To: Professor Markovits et al.

From: Professor Bubba Redneck

F**K OFF!

Bubba Redneck on December 30, 2010 at 1:43 AM

Reminds me of the time I was in an all day orientation at my first teaching job at this private, very liberal university. The topic of parking came up as the place in the middle of a very large city’s downtown core and, naturally, parking is a hot topic. One very ugly liberal woman flapped her gums for what seemed like an eternity about how we should all get bus passes as the university contributes to them and global warming (as if her PhD in English made her an expert on atmospheric science!) and pollution and you’ll have more free time to get stuff done (!) and you can catch up on your reading on the bus (!!) on and on and on!

Well with my house being in the suburbs my commute time would nearly double riding with a bunch of smelly drunks and probably having to stand most of the way to boot over the comfort of my paid for automobile, so riding the bus was never a consideration.

A few weeks later I see the above mentioned ugly liberal woman getting out of her very large SUV plastered with Clinton bumper stickers in the parking garage. She did look at me funny as I walked by her laughing.

You can always spot a socialist; it is never your money or your wealth, it is always the government’s money and wealth and how dare you keep it.

Bubba Redneck on December 30, 2010 at 2:11 AM

Four legs good, two legs bad!

flytier on December 30, 2010 at 7:12 AM

I’m going to donate to the local Gun store, they could Use the money, I could use the guns. (lost all of mine in boating accident last week).

Fake8 on December 29, 2010 at 5:41 PM

Ouch !

Have a brother who lost a rifle that way.

BowHuntingTexas on December 29, 2010 at 5:56 PM

Now I have figure out how to explain away the fact that I was boating on a lake with ice 3″ thick, but the rest of the is like, totally true you know.

Fake8 on December 30, 2010 at 7:34 AM

What tax cut? Who got a tax cut? Anyone?? I sure as hell didn’t.

If this is what passes for intelligence in academia, our kids are screwed.

CantCureStupid on December 30, 2010 at 7:47 AM

If this is what passes for intelligence in academia, our kids are screwed.

CantCureStupid on December 30, 2010 at 7:47 AM

I would think one could receive a much better education on their own these days instead of spending a fortune to listen to some communist half-wit try to tell you bad is good and good is bad.

I honestly don’t understand why we tolerate outright hostility to the US and teaching of open revolution in our schools. Marxists and their sympathizers should be booted, from schools and the country.

darwin on December 30, 2010 at 8:24 AM

What the hell is going on at the Cornell Law School? They can’t find professors with CV’s? This guy Hockett, a full professor, has never published a law review piece, not written any scholarly material at all and only every now and then writes even a blog piece. He teaches two courses, as far as I can tell (which means he works about 100 days a year), one of which is a piece of fluff called “Markets, Morals and Methods”, whatever that is. He’s a Marxist, sure, but worse- he’s a lazy Marxist. Why did Cornell hire him?

MTF on December 30, 2010 at 9:23 AM

He’s a Marxist, sure, but worse- he’s a lazy Marxist. Why did Cornell hire him?

MTF on December 30, 2010 at 9:23 AM

Because he’s a Marxist? The goal of higher education today isn’t to teach, it’s to indoctrinate and propagandize.

darwin on December 30, 2010 at 9:38 AM

Good for them. Are those professors giving? That’d be the very first thing I’d want to know.

hawksruleva on December 30, 2010 at 10:02 AM

Ann Coulter’s column today highlights the difference in giving by liberals and conservatives.

hawksruleva on December 30, 2010 at 10:07 AM

Ann Coulter’s column today highlights the difference in giving by liberals and conservatives.

hawksruleva on December 30, 2010 at 10:07 AM

Funny isn’t it? This “giving to charity” is a novel idea for this liberal professor, since they don’t give to charity anyways, he probably thinks he invented the idea himself.

scotash on December 30, 2010 at 12:26 PM

Michael Medved had a guest on he thought was proposing the same thing turned out he wanted people to donate to PAC that was going to campaign for higher taxes.

RonK on December 30, 2010 at 1:32 PM

Are these people nuts? I want them to have to establish a Keogh plan and be placed in the same boat as the rest of us with Obamacare……………well, not really. Their compensation package of having a pension plan and having a Cadillac Health Insurance plan and three months off makes teaching a good deal that many choose. You aren’t going to get rich teaching in the K-12, but you are treated well. I just wish they could apply more discipline and receive parent support in schools as they did back when I was going through public school.

SC.Charlie on January 2, 2011 at 8:01 AM

I wonder if those professor grade the same way they view the economy? If so, I would only take their classes as everyone received an “A”. Right?

Claimsratt on January 3, 2011 at 11:27 AM

receives even

Claimsratt on January 3, 2011 at 11:27 AM

Is this one of the rich got richer guys that turned his back on the middle class?

http://www.businessweek.com/news/2010-05-28/yale-s-swensen-paid-3-7-million-for-running-endowment-in-2008.html

Lots of windfall profit in that trust fund. Lots of “good” could be done with it.

DWB on January 3, 2011 at 1:58 PM

I am surprised that these revolter’s are not asking/demanding that the tax refunds be deposited into their union funds.

MSGTAS on January 4, 2011 at 9:26 AM

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