Saturday, December 25, 2010

PAOO Reaches 100 - Merry Christmas

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,  I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’  Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?  And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?  And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’  And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me

I've got three posts scheduled for next week, but as I was poking around.  I realized that the next post to go up will make 100 published posts.  From the reports that I  get from Google I can safely say that my readership can be numbered in the scores.  I am grateful to each and every one of you.  I realize that most of you are not clicking on the ads, because you are afraid that the flood of revenue might motivate me to quit my day job.  Don't be concerned, it is the furthest thing from my thoughts.  You can click in peace.

My goal in this blog is to highlight tax developments either because they are interesting, practical or funny.  I am most pleased when I highlight something that has otherwise been largely overlooked.   I feel particularly pleased when I do a google search and find that PAOO is near the top.  Here are some to try:

PMTA 2010-058

parsonage second home

does land need to have business purpose to be part of flp  (make bottom of page 1 on this one - not an elegant query, but somebody used it and found me)

Early in December I shared with you what the greatest hits have been.  There has not been much change except for my post on people who have been strongly encouraged to get out of the tax preparation business moving into the top five.

I took down most of the non-tax posts I made early in the blog (the ones taken down do not count as part of the 100), but I left a couple.  One in particular is timely for the Christmas season.  I have heard that things are working out well for the homeless fellow that my friend "James" helped out back in May.  I should no longer do even simple math in my head, but I'm taking a chance here and saying that it is only 82 days to St. Patrick's Day.  In some circles, this is thought to be a holiday to be celebrated by drinking to excess.  A nascent movement known as San Patricios Against Hunger stands for the proposition that Americans of Irish descent are more than likely descended from famine refugees and that they should celebrate the holiday by donating to hunger fighting charities.

I haven't commented at length on the recent tax compromise and probably won't.  I did mention a peculiar opportunity with respect to the generation skipping tax that requires action this week.  My other observation is that with respect to income taxes things have been pretty much left intact, which means that general principles of tax planning are back in full effect.  One of the general rules is to accelerate deductions (This was much more significant when money actually earned interest).  People were holding back on this thinking that rates would be higher next year.  So first thing tomorrow get out your check book or its electronic equivalent and make some charitable contributions.  Now because of the material I work with this blog will often teach you more about what not to do.  If you want to get a tax deduction don't give to an organization that has had its exempt status revoked like the Free Fertility Foundation.  Also, although I think its a wonderful thing to invite homeless people to lunch and its probably quite rewarding to watch the ushers gasp when you drop a couple of C Notes in the collection plate as was the habit of Hardy Ray Murphy, you won't get any deductions. (Buy the homeless guys lunch anyway).  So on a more positive note I'll suggest a couple of qualified organizations that will provide you with a proper acknowledgement.

I divide my practice between Central Massachusetts and Central Florida.  The two regions seem to be at peace with one another.  A Unitarian minister from Worcester once led a regiment that occupied Jacksonville, but many of the men in Thomas Wentworth Higginson's First South Carolina Volunteers were native to Florida.  I don't like basketball so I really don't need to get passionate about either the Celtics or the Magic.  I am however passionate about supporting two charities Grace Medical Home which is a marvellous model of how to provide medical care to the working poor and Jeremiah's Inn which provides substance abuse recovery and runs a neighborhood food pantry.  Moving beyond the local I would recommend Just Detention International, the only human rights organization devoted exclusively to ending sexual abuse of prisoners.  It happens that I am the longest serving board member of JDI and the only current member recruited by Stephen Donaldson.  I hope you will consider those three as you are making out your checks this week.

So Merry Christmas.  And be sure to not shoot your eye out.

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