Roughly six years ago, I wrote a funny little article about Donald Trump, then just a presidential aspirant and rider of escalators. My suspicion was that Trump’s racist and fascist ways would be revelatory not for Trump, but for the rest of the GOP. I didn’t know at the time (apparently, neither did the Daily News) that Trump’s racism was a deal-maker for many voters. So thanking him for his racism didn’t do much of anything. He revealed the GOP as a white-supremacist organization? Big fat furry fukin deal. his voters were encouraged by this. So ‘thanking Donald Trump’ was not good. I didn’t know the culture of the GOP.
So now… we have pushed the Donald out the door. And now the sharks are circling. Trump’s longtime accountant Allen Weiselberg was brought in handcuffs to court last week. The vultures are beginning to circle. But any reading of the reporting on the Trump taxes that starts in 2017 is WAAAAAYY behind the times. Trump has been a tax cheat since the days his Father was still alive. So were his siblings.
We were all wakened by the NY Times’ reporting on this. VOX reported on the Times Story thusly:
- “In 1990, Fred Trump sent a man named Howard Snyder to Donald Trump’s Atlantic City casino with a $3.35 million check, which Snyder used to buy casino chips. He left the casino without even hitting the craps table. That money was, in effect, an untaxed gift from father to son.
- “Beginning in 1992, Fred Trump’s real estate business began purchasing boilers, refrigerators, cleaning supplies, and other equipment from a company called All County Building Supply & Maintenance instead of a wholesaler. All County, which was owned by Donald Trump and his siblings and charged much higher rates than other suppliers, seems to have been a shell company that existed only to siphon Fred Trump’s money to his children under the guise of business transactions.
- “In 1995, Fred Trump began transferring ownership of his properties to his children through grantor-related annuity trusts (GRATs), a mechanism through which wealthy families can pass on property to their children without paying gift or inheritance taxes.
“As the Times notes in its investigation, there’s a fine line between legal tax avoidance and illegal tax evasion. Some of Fred and Donald Trump’s actions, such as the casino debacle, are clearly illegal. Other things that sound illegal — like avoiding inheritance taxes through a network of trusts — may not be. I talked to Lee-Ford Tritt, a tax law professor at the University of Florida whom the Times consulted for its report, to help me try to make sense of it all. Our conversation has been edited for length and clarity.“
In other words, Times Reporters were able to pin down considerable illegal action for both Trump and his siblings
All of this was revealed by the Times by 2018. If you want the short version, you can find it on VOX. You can also find the longer version in the Times. So the Donald’s gaming of the IRS is over 30 years old. Did anybody in the GOP vet any of this? The Republicans are lousy at vetting aspirants for the top job. Remember Herman Cain’s serial sexual assaults? Remember how the GOP didn’t touch Romney’s taxes and stood up for him when he refused to publish his returns in 2012?
And it isn’t just this. a ProPublica report co-authored at NPR’s TRUMP INC, showed that Trump had been engaged in both bank fraud and tax fraud with his marquee building 40 Wall Street. And the double-dealing here was easy to find because it was all in publicly available documents. The Numbers don’t match. And yet nobody in NY State or the Feds could find the theft.
But now the Feds are at the door. All of these crimes are being uncovered. Trump might see the inside of a cell for years of cheating on his taxes. The Trump organization might also be dust. .
NOT GOOD ENOUGH.
Here’s the issue. The IRS could have saved the country a LOT of trouble had these revelations come out in the 1990’s or the Oughts or even ten years ago. Did they NEVER look at his returns carefully? You have to ask yourself, why didn’t anybody find this out? We have a whole Treasury department ostensibly looking at everyone’s returns every year and yet somehow, a billionaire who already got reported on for misdeeds just skated. Remember SPY magazine? They blew the whistle on Howard Snyder’s purchase of all the casino chips acting as an illegal loan or gift. Back in the 1990’s.
If one of ‘Murica’s richest men saw no reason to pay his taxes for the better part of three decades, why should anyone else?
As I put this together, I remembered the hatred FDR earned as ‘traitor to his class’–the class of super wealthy men who had to start paying up during the Great Depression. For the Bloombergs and Bezos’ and Gates family, the revelation that one of their class was perpetually engaged in tax fraud has got to bring out some hatred. And it should, shouldn’t it? The revelations of the tax stunts of the Trump era should make the inspectors look askance at Every billionaire’s returns twice. And as appalling as Trump’s behavior was, the leftists owe him a perverse gratitude for making the criminal behavior so obvious.