Paul L. Caron

Thursday, November 30, 2023

SSRN Tax Professor Rankings

SSRN Logo (2018)SSRN has updated its monthly ranking of 750 American and international law school faculties and 3,000 law professors by (among other things) the number of paper downloads from the SSRN database.  Here is the new list (through November 1, 2023) of the Top 25 U.S. Tax Professors in two of the SSRN categories: all-time downloads and recent downloads (within the past 12 months):

    All-Time     Recent
1 Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan)  226,070 1 Jonathan Choi (USC) 23,226
2 Daniel Hemel (NYU) 131,630 2 Kristin Hickman (Minnesota) 14,591
3 Dan Shaviro (NYU) 127,622 3 Amy Monahan (Minnesota) 13,483
4 Lily Batchelder (NYU) 127,324 4 Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan) 11,588
5 David Gamage (Indiana-Maurer) 126,793 5 David Gamage (Indiana-Maurer) 4,336
6 Darien Shanske (UC-Davis) 118,839 6 Bridget Crawford (Pace) 4,225
7 David Kamin (NYU) 114,326 7 Daniel Hemel (NYU) 4,021
8 Cliff Fleming (BYU)    108,470 8 Louis Kaplow (Harvard) 3,777
9 Manoj Viswanathan (UC-SF) 104,876 9 Kyle Rozema (Northwestern) 3,765
10 Ari Glogower (Northwestern) 104,363 10 D. Dharmapala (UC-Berkeley) 3,470
11 Rebecca Kysar (Fordham) 103,932 11 Steve Black (Texas Tech) 3,435
12 D. Dharmapala (UC-Berkeley) 51,828 12 Darien Shanske (UC-Davis) 3,307
13 Michael Simkovic (USC) 48,652 13 Ruth Mason (Virginia) 3,305
14 Louis Kaplow (Harvard) 41,632 14 Kim Clausing (UCLA)     3,263
15 Paul Caron (Pepperdine) 41,584 15 Robert Sitkoff (Harvard) 3,085
16 Richard Ainsworth (Boston University) 38,832 16 Zachary Liscow (Yale) 2,987
17 Bridget Crawford (Pace) 37,867 17 Brad Borden (Brooklyn) 2,907
18 Robert Sitkoff (Harvard) 33,292 18 Richard Ainsworth (Boston University) 2,873
19 Brad Borden (Brooklyn) 31,702 19 Brian Galle (Georgetown) 2,490
20 Ruth Mason (Virginia) 30,891 20 Young Ran (Christine) Kim (Cardozo) 2,446
21 Vic Fleischer (UC-Irvine) 30,312 21 Ellen Aprill (Loyola-L.A.) 2,361
22 Ed Kleinbard (USC) 29,821 22 Dan Shaviro (NYU) 2,280
23 Jim Hines (Michigan) 28,559 23 Lily Batchelder (NYU) 2,134
24 Kim Clausing (UCLA) 27,939 24 John R. Brooks (Fordham) 2,094
25 Richard Kaplan (Illinois) 27,476 25 David Weisbach (Chicago) 2,071

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November 30, 2023 in Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Prof Rankings | Permalink

ABA Selects DePaul Dean Jennifer Rosato Perea As New Managing Director Of Legal Education

Press Release, ABA Selects DePaul Law Dean as New Managing Director of Legal Education:

Rosato PereaJennifer Rosato Perea, who has served as dean of DePaul University College of Law since 2015, will be the new managing director of accreditation and legal education for the American Bar Association effective June 1, 2024.

Rosato Perea, a nationally recognized leader in legal education, is in her second term at DePaul and 16th year as a law dean. A longtime advocate of student engagement and professionalism, Rosato Perea is one of only a small number of Latina law school deans in the nation, and she would become the first Latina to serve as head of ABA legal education, which includes the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar, its governing council and an ABA program that approves paralegal programs.

She will replace Bill Adams, who has served as managing director for accreditation and legal education since spring 2020 and who managed through the pandemic, which forced most law schools to adopt online coursework among other changes.

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November 30, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Satterthwaite Reviews Bearer-Friend's Colorblind Tax Enforcement

Emily Satterthwaite (Georgetown; Google Scholar), Beyond Audits: Investigating the Role of Race in Various Tax Enforcement Settings (JOTWELL) (reviewing Jeremy Bearer-Friend (George Washington; Google Scholar), Colorblind Tax Enforcement, 97 NYU L. Rev. 1 (2022)):

Jotwell (2023)Following the January release of a groundbreaking study by Hadi Elzayn, Robin Fisher, Jacob Goldin, Thomas Hertz, Daniel E. Ho, Arun Ramesh, and Evelyn Smith and the resulting mediaCongressional, and IRS attention, it is now well-known that Black taxpayers are audited at rates three to five times the rates of non-Black taxpayers. The audit study is a landmark both for its results (which contradict past IRS statements) and also for its novel methodology, which uses individually-estimated taxpayer race probabilities to obtain informative bounds on the racial audit rate disparity. In addition to illuminating problematic patterns in current IRS audit selection procedures, the study’s methodology offers promise for the future in investigating other race-based patterns in tax enforcement.

In what non-audit enforcement areas might such patterns arise? Here is where the prescient work of Jeremy Bearer-Friend (as cited in the audit study, P. 41) comes in, building on the work of other scholars working at the intersection of race and tax. In “Colorblind Tax Enforcement,” Bearer-Friend refutes on first principles the now-debunked claim that because the IRS does not collect race data, it cannot discriminate by race when enforcing tax laws. He points out that, for IRS agents, making inferences about the race of a taxpayer on the basis of the information provided on the return (names of taxpayer, spouse, and children, address including zip code, family structure, and occupation) is plausible and probable: “[e]ach of these datapoints can lead to inferences of racial identity in the mind of the relevant IRS personnel, with the combination of data points creating a stronger likelihood of inference” (P. 19). Moreover, at many points in the enforcement process there are telephonic or in-person conferences that allow for further racial inferences. ...

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November 29, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Kristin Hickman Will Not Join The Texas Faculty In January 2024 And Will Remain At Minnesota

Following up on my previous post, Kristin Hickman Leaves Minnesota For Texas (Effective January 2024):  Brian Leiter (Chicago) reports that Kristin Hickman will not be leaving Minnesota for Texas in January 2024, as previously announced by Texas. Kristin is #9 in the 2023 Google Scholar Tax Prof Rankings (H-Index Since 2018)  and #16 in the 2023 Google Scholar Tax Prof Rankings (H-Index All.

November 29, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News, Tax Prof Moves | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tax Law Just Doesn’t Pay Like It Used To

Steven Chung (Tax Attorney, Los Angeles), Potential Client Wants To Pay A Tax Lawyer $50 To Answer Unlimited Questions For 6 Weeks:

Last night, as I was scrolling through Twitter/X looking for the post that would change my life, a colleague shared a post from someone seeking a tax attorney with intermediate experience.

Most people responded to the potential client’s post with ridicule. But I wonder how many of them did the same thing. How many of them called their professional friends to ask a simple question which turned into a 20-minute conversation?

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November 29, 2023 in Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News | Permalink

58% Of Prospective Law Students Want To Attend A School With Classmates Of The Same Political Views, Prospective Law Students Want to Attend School With 'Like-Minded Individuals,' Study Finds:

A majority of pre-law students reported that they would prefer attending a law school where classmates hold similar political views, according to a recent survey.

Kaplan recently reported that 58% of pre-law students say that “it’s important for them to attend a law school where their fellow students generally hold the same political/social views as they do.” ...

The last time Kaplan released a survey on this issue in January 2020, only 46% said this issue was important.

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November 29, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Avi-Yonah Posts Two International Tax Papers On SSRN

Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan; Google Scholar) has posted two international tax papers on SSRN:

SSRNThe First US Tax Treaty and Its Influence

This paper discusses the first US tax treaty concluded with France in 1932 and ratified in 1935. This treaty is interesting because it follows the League of Nations model of 1928 but with significant differences. It is also a treaty between a global jurisdiction and (at the time) a purely territorial one. This meant that while reductions in French taxes benefited the US fisc because they resulted in lower foreign tax credits (but the overall tax level was the same), French investors into the US could derive some types of income (e.g., royalties) without any tax being imposed by either country. This may also explain why the treaty was more limited in scope than the League of Nations model. But the main importance of the treaty is because it is the first ever appearance of the Arms Length Principle in international tax, which had a profound influence.

The UTPR Reconsidered: A Response to Fadi Shaheen

In a letter to the editor [Much Ado: Why the United States Should Calm Down About DSTs], 181 Tax Notes Fed. 1235 (Nov. 13, 2023)], Reuven S. Avi-Yonah rebuts criticism of the UTPR that Fadi Shaheen made in a recent article [Is the UTPR a 100 Percent Tax on a Deemed Distribution?, 181 Tax Notes Fed. 481 (Oct. 16, 2023)].

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November 29, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Fall Out From Antisemitism At NYU And UC-Berkeley Law Schools

New York Law Journal, 60% of 1,176 NYU Law Students Vote to Oust Ryna Workman From Student Bar:

Ryna Workman has officially been ousted from their position as president of the Student Bar Association at New York University School of Law amid controversy over comments made about the Israel-Palestine conflict.

A voting link was sent to 2,070 students and 1,176 votes were received with 707 students (60%) voting that Workman should not remain in office, according to an X (formerly Twitter) post showing an image of an email sent from Student Affairs. ...

On Oct. 10, Workman posted an emailed message, saying that Israel’s “regime of state-sanctioned violence created the conditions that made resistance necessary,” in Workman’s capacity as NYU Law SBA president.

Along with being ousted from the SBA, Winston & Strawn rescinded its job offer to Workman, who had previously worked for the firm as a summer associate.

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November 29, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Fox Presents Who Benefits From Corporate Tax Cuts?: Evidence From Banks And Credit Unions Around The TCJA At NYU And Columbia This Week

Edward Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) presents Who Benefits from Corporate Tax Cuts?: Evidence from Banks and Credit Unions around the TCJA (with Benjamin Pyle (Boston University; Google Scholar)) at NYU today as part of its Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium hosted by Daniel Shaviro and at Columbia on Thursday as part of its Davis Polk & Wardwell Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Michael Love::

Edward foxThe TCJA of 2017 made large changes to the taxation of corporate and pass-through businesses in the U.S. Understanding the effects of these changes is complicated by the difficulty of finding control firms whose taxation was not altered by the Act. We study the effect of the TCJA on small and medium size banks using credit unions—which compete with these banks for deposits and in making loans—as a novel control group. Credit unions were not taxed both before and after the Act. Using a difference-in-difference framework, we find that an important fraction of the incidence of the tax cut goes to depositors. We find little evidence that employees or borrowers from banks receive a share of the tax cut in the form of higher wages or lower interest rates on loans or that banks increase their investment in fixed assets as a result of the Act.

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November 28, 2023 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Straight White Male NYU 1L May Proceed Anonymously In Law Review Discrimination Case

Following up on my previous post, Lawsuit Claims NYU Law Review Discriminates Against Straight White Men In Selection Of Student Editors:  Reuters, Plaintiff in NYU Law Review Discrimination Case May Remain Anonymous:

NYU Law ReviewA white, heterosexual, male law student who sued New York University claiming that its law school's flagship law review gives preference to women and minorities in violation of U.S. law may proceed with his case anonymously, at least for now, a Manhattan federal judge has ruled.

U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero did not explain his reasoning in his Tuesday order, but noted that NYU may seek to disclose the plaintiff's identity once the case is assigned to a judge.

The plaintiff — listed as John Doe in court papers — is in his first year at the NYU School of Law and intends to apply for a spot on the NYU Law Review in the summer of 2024, according to his October lawsuit. ...

Doe’s suit is the first legal challenge to law review diversity policies following the U.S. Supreme Court’s June decision that prohibited race-conscious college and university admissions.

Eugene Volokh (UCLA; Google Scholar), Challenge to NYU Law Review's Race and Sex Preferences May Proceed Pseudonymously, at Least for Now:

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November 28, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Jeff Bezos Will Save Billions In Taxes By Moving To Miami

The Messenger, Jeff Bezos Will Save Billions on His Tax Bills by Moving to Miami:

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is escaping more than Seattle’s gloomy weather with his cross-country move to sunny Miami.

The world’s third-richest person, worth roughly $161 billion according to Forbes, will also ditch Washington State’s hefty taxes, likely saving him billions of dollars over the long term, according to securities filings, tax lawyers and accounting experts.

Aaron Johnson, a tax lawyer at law firm Lane Powell in Seattle, told The Messenger that Bezos “stands to benefit from significant tax savings if he changes his domicile.”

On the immediate front, The Washington Post newspaper owner will avoid Washington State’s controversial new 7% tax on investment profits, which residents began paying this year.

Later, Bezos will dodge the Pacific Northwest state’s long-standing top estate tax of 20%, the highest in the nation.

Robert Willens, an independent tax and accounting expert in New York, told The Messenger that Bezos will “adroitly sidestep Washington's estate tax levies, which, in his case, could easily amount to upwards of $32 billion” based on his current net worth. The tax, which is in addition to the top federal estate tax of 40%, hits fortunes starting at just over $2.1 million. ...

One lure he didn’t mention in his announcement: massive tax savings.

Last but not least, Bezos will remove himself from the crosshairs of state lawmakers’ efforts to impose a 1% “extreme wealth tax” on the worldwide holdings of the very richest residents. If passed into law, the levy would hit billionaires on the paper value of their assets, regardless of whether or not they’ve been sold.

When the 59-year-old announced Nov. 2 on Instagram that he was leaving his Seattle home base of three decades for Florida, he said the impetus for the move had come from a desire to be closer to his parents, who he said recently relocated back to Miami from Seattle. He also said the operations of his Blue Origins rocket company were “increasingly shifting” to Cape Canaveral, Fla., a three and a half hour drive 190 miles north of Miami. 

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November 28, 2023 in Celebrity Tax Lore, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

NY Times Op-Ed: Universities (And Law Schools) Are Failing At Inclusion

New York Times Op-Ed:  Universities Are Failing at Inclusion, by David Brooks:

The Idenity Trap 2Universities are supposed to be centers of inquiry and curiosity — places where people are tolerant of difference and learn about other points of view. Instead, too many have become brutalizing ideological war zones, so today the most hostile place to be an American Jew is not at some formerly restricted country club but on a college campus.

How on earth did this happen? I’ve been teaching on college campuses off and on for 25 years. It’s become increasingly evident to me that American adolescence and young adulthood — especially for those who wind up at elite schools — now happen within a specific kind of ideological atmosphere.

It centers on a hard-edged ideological framework that has been spreading in high school and college, on social media, in diversity training seminars and in popular culture. The framework doesn’t have a good name yet. It draws on the thinking of intellectuals ranging from the French philosopher Michel Foucault to the critical race theorist Derrick Bell. (For a good intellectual history, I recommend Yascha Mounk’s recent book, “The Identity Trap.”)

The common ideas associated with this ideology are by now pretty familiar:

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November 28, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Thorndike: Moores Lean On 1916 Tax Expert To Argue No Realization Means No Income

Joseph J. Thorndike (Tax Analysts), Tax History: Moores Lean on 1916 Tax Expert to Argue No Realization Means No Income, 181 Tax Notes Fed. 1356 (Nov. 20, 2023):

Tax Notes Federal (2022)Apparently, Charles G. Moore and Kathleen F. Moore are in thrall to a certain Columbia University economist from the early 20th century. Edwin R.A. Seligman is a big player in Moore v. United States, No. 22-800 — no small feat for a scholar who’s been moldering in a Brooklyn cemetery these past 84 years.

Still, Seligman’s prominence in the Moore case is worthy of note, even if Keynes would have found it predictable. The petitioners have cited Seligman repeatedly, using him to support their claim that unrealized income is not really income at all — at least not as far as the 16th Amendment is concerned.

As well they should: The Moores could hardly have asked for a better historical champion. If you’re trying to argue that the original meaning of the 16th Amendment hinges on the concept of realization, then Seligman is your man.

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November 28, 2023 in New Cases, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

UC-San Francisco Law Prof Sues City After His Service Dog Was Denied Entry Into Library

San Francisco Standard, San Francisco Man Sues City After Dog Denied Entry Into Library:

FreshmanA San Francisco law professor said his service dog was denied entry to a city library, putting him at risk of injury due to his unique medical condition, a lawsuit alleges.

The complaint, which was filed in federal court against the city Monday, alleges violations of the Americans With Disabilities Act and California Disabled Persons Act and is seeking damages for emotional distress and payment of attorney fees.

Clark Freshman, who filed the lawsuit, said he has a heart condition called an aortic aneurysm, which can cause his aorta to rupture if his blood pressure gets too high. Freshman says his service dog can detect if his blood pressure gets too high so he can take medication to lower his blood pressure quickly.

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November 28, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Monday, November 27, 2023

Kleiman, Sarkar & Satterthwaite Present Towards An Understanding Of Nannies' Tax Experiences And Preferences Today At Loyola-L.A.

Ariel Jurow Kleiman (Loyola-L.A.; Google Scholar), Shayak Sarkar (UC-Davis; Google Scholar), and Emily Satterthwaite (Georgetown; Google Scholar) present Towards an Understanding of Nannies' Tax Experiences and Preferences at Loyola-L.A. today as part of its Tax Policy Colloquium hosted by Katie Pratt:

Kleiman-sarkar-satterthwaiteDespite their indispensable work, nannies in the U.S. often work long hours for low wages and fear retaliation if they complain about work or pay conditions. Exacerbating this precarity is the fact that many nannies work “off the books” and thus must keep their work secret not only from state and federal tax agencies, but from employment and labor agencies as well. This Article investigates nannies’ preferences for or against formal employment and tax reporting, the reasons behind such preferences, and how such preferences correspond to nannies’ relationships with their employers and with society more broadly. 

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November 27, 2023 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Legal Ed News Roundup

WSJ: Does The IRS Have Authority To Circumvent Congressional Tax Policy With Tax Cuts By Administrative Fiat?

Wall Street Journal, IRS Delays Tax Deadlines Set by Congress. It Could Cost $8 Billion.:

IRS Logo (2023)Congress set strict enforcement deadlines when it created new tax requirements for e-commerce platforms, older 401(k) savers and cryptocurrency brokers.

The Internal Revenue Service has now postponed them all for two years—which could cost the Treasury more than $8 billion. ...

The IRS decisions help the affected taxpayers avoid burdensome requirements. Millions of people selling goods on eBay or reselling tickets on StubHub won’t get confusing tax forms in January. High-income workers age 50 and up can still make their full retirement contributions in pretax dollars next year instead of posttax accounts. And crypto brokers don’t yet have to report transactions that could lead to eight billion information returns going to the IRS each year.

At least in the short run, however, the tax agency’s moves frustrate lawmakers’ attempts to raise revenue and plug gaps in tax compliance.

They are symptomatic of a phenomenon in which administrations of both parties take action without the oversight or cost analysis required by legislation. The tax delays aren’t as headline-grabbing as President Biden’s student-loan relief or former President Donald Trump’s border-wall construction. But they allow the IRS to deliver what are, in a sense, tax breaks without congressional approval.

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November 27, 2023 in IRS News, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News | Permalink

One-Third Through Fall 2024 Law School Admissions Season: Black (+3%), Hispanic (+2%) & Asian (+1%) Applicants Are Up; White (-3%) & 170-180 LSAT (-8%) Applicants Are Down

We are now 33% of the way through Fall 2024 law school admissions season. The number of law school applicants reported by LSAC is down -0.1% compared to last year at this time:

LSAC 1-2

119 of the 196 law schools are experiencing a decrease in applications. Applications are down -10% or more at 78 law schools:

LSAC 2-2

Applicants are down the most in Northeast (-5.3%), New England (-5.0%), and Midwest (-4.6%); and are up in Other (+15.2%), Mountain West (+4.6%), and Midsouth (+0.8%):

LSAC 3-2

Applicants' LSAT scores are down -8.0% in the 170-180 band, -0.7% in the 160-169 band, -3.5% in the 150-159 band, and -0.5% in the 120-149 band:

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November 27, 2023 in Legal Education | Permalink

Lesson From The Tax Court:  Taxpayers Cannot Invoke The 'Augusta Rule' With Unplayable Lie

Camp (2021)In the past few years there have apparently been a lot of excited Tik Tok posts about how closely held businesses can use the “Augusta Rule” to get a double tax benefit: a deduction for the business under §162 and tax free income to the business owner under §280A(g).

In Kunjlata J. Jadhav and Jalandar Y. Jadhav v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2023-140 (Nov. 21, 2023) (Judge Vasquez), the taxpayers get lured by the promise of tax free income under the August Rule into making what turned out to be an unplayable lie on their tax returns.  They did not get a mulligan.  They did get penalties.  The problem was these taxpayers were unable to show that the rental payments their S Corp made to them and their sons were “ordinary and necessary” under §162.  That requirement is not usually a difficult one to meet but when you are trying to play the system, it can be tricky to get through the rough and avoid the hazards to make the hole.

Details below the fold.

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November 27, 2023 in Bryan Camp, New Cases, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Practice And Procedure, Tax Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0)

Former Law School Dean Faces Disbarment For Allegedly Misspending $500,000 From Endowment Intended For Students

CBC, Former Manitoba Law School Dean Can't Be Trusted as Lawyer and Should Be Disbarred, Law Society Lawyer Says:

Black-BranchA lawyer representing the Law Society of Manitoba argues the former head of the University of Manitoba's law school can't be trusted as a lawyer and should be disbarred based on numerous allegations he misspent or misused hundreds of thousands of dollars from the university.

In his closing arguments to a law society disciplinary panel on Thursday, Rocky Kravetsky, a lawyer representing the society, broke down the list of accusations against the former dean, Jonathan Black-Branch — including nearly $500,000 he allegedly misspent on professional development from a U of M endowment meant for students.

"These are serious, serious breaches," Kravetsky told the panel of the law society at Black-Branch's professional misconduct hearing in Winnipeg.

"The likelihood is we would be seeking disbarment.… Jonathan Black-Branch is simply not a person that can be trusted to be a lawyer.… He does not demonstrate the integrity that lawyers are required to."

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November 27, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

TaxProf Blog Holiday Weekend Roundup

Sunday, November 26, 2023

WaPo Op-Ed: At 33, I Knew Everything. At 69, I Know Something Much More Important

Washington Post Op-Ed:    At 33, I Knew Everything. At 69, I Know Something Much More Important., by Anne Lamott (Author, Somehow: Thoughts on Love (2024)):

Somehow 2Today I woke up old and awful in every way. I simultaneously cannot bear the news and cannot turn it off: It’s cobra hypnosis — Gaza, Israel, the shootings in Maine. The world is as dark as a scarab. I have two memorial services on my calendar this week. ...

My body hurt quite a lot when I got out of bed this morning, and I limped around like Granny Clampett for the first hour, until it unseized. Worse, my mind hurt, my heart hurt and I hated almost everyone, except my husband, my grandson and one of the dogs.

I don’t think I could have borne up under all this 20 years ago when I thought I knew so much about life. That was not nearly as much as I knew at 33, which is when we know more than we ever will again. But age has given me the ability to hang out without predicting how things will sort out this time (mostly — depending on how I’ve slept). ...

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November 26, 2023 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

What Does It Profit A Christian To Protect An Institution But Lose Their Soul?

Russell Moore (Editor in Chief, Christianity Today), What Does It Profit a Christian to Protect an Institution but Lose Their Soul? (adapted from Losing Our Religion: An Altar Call for Evangelical America (2023)):

Losing Our ReligionThe late pastor Eugene Peterson, in a letter to his son, also a pastor, wrote that the primary problem for the Christian leader is to take responsibility not just for the ends but also for the “ways and means” by which we guide people to pursue those ends. “The devil’s three temptations of Jesus all had to do with ways and means,” he wrote. “Every one of the devil’s goals was excellent. The devil had an unsurpassed vision statement. But the ways and means were incompatible with the ends.”

As Peterson put it, the discipleship that Jesus calls us to is one “both personally and corporately conducted in which the insides and outsides are continuous. A life in which we are as careful and attentive to the how as to the what.”

This is because, Peterson counseled, “if we are going to live the Jesus life, we simply have to do it the Jesus way—he is, after all, the Way as well as the Truth and Life.” There are no emergency escape clauses from the way of the Cross.

What seems to be popular in this moment is not so much a prosperity gospel as a depravity gospel. In this depravity gospel, appeals to character or moral norms are met not with appeals of “Not guilty!” but with dismissals of “Get real!”

Yet this depravity gospel tries to lure us in. It doesn’t matter if you get to it by adopting it outright, with glee at cruelty and vulgarity, or if it drives you to the kind of cynicism that doesn’t ever expect anything better.

That way lies nihilism. You will find yourself in situations, and you may be in one of those situations already, where you have a responsibility for holding an institution accountable. Maybe it’s simply as a voter. You can just shrug and give your assent to anyone your party tells you to support. That will change you, over time. Maybe it’s as a church member or a part of some denomination or Christian ministry.

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November 26, 2023 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Christians Can’t Fix The Israel-Hamas War

Christianity Today, Christians Can’t Fix the Israel-Hamas War:

Christianity TodayJesus could end this crisis. His followers almost certainly can’t. ...

We cannot fix this crisis, no matter how faithful, factual, and fervent we are.

This bears saying, I think, for two reasons. One is our modern habit of “awareness,” as in, I am posting this article on Facebook because I want to raise awareness.

On many issues of great import, the reality is most of us can do very little to effect significant change. Sometimes we can give money to a relevant cause. Always we can pray (1 Thess. 5:17) and take care we do not sin in our hearts or our speech as we react to the news (Matt. 5:21–30). But most of us are not scientists who can find a cure for cancer, or politicians who can rewrite American immigration law, or generals who can decide on whom bombs will fall. Our duties to God and neighbor are usually more imminent and mundane, and if God answers our prayers, that is far more God’s work than ours. ...

The other reason is that, as Christians, we rightly have a high opinion of faithfulness and its effects. By faith, God’s people have “administered justice,” “shut the mouths of lions,” and “received back their dead, raised to life again” (Heb. 11). We can be “co-workers in God’s service,” as Paul wrote to the Corinthians, whose faith rests “on God’s power” (1 Cor. 3:9, 2:5). The “prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective,” James taught, reminding us of the story of Elijah—“a human being, even as we are”—whose earnest prayer led to both famine and plenty (5:16­­–18).

[F]aith is not magic, nor is it a guarantee of a happy ending on this side of eternity. It does not always succeed in protecting us or turning others away from evil. ...

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November 26, 2023 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

The Top Five New Tax Papers

This week's list of the Top 5 Recent Tax Paper Downloads is the same as last week's list, with some reshuffling of the order within the Top 5. The #1 paper is #1,342 among 17,851 tax papers in all-time downloads.

  1. SSRN Logo (2018)[583 Downloads]  Efficiency vs. Welfare in Benefit-Cost Analysis: The Case of Government Funding, by Zachary Liscow (Yale; Google Scholar) & Cass Sunstein (Harvard; Google Scholar)
  2. [574 Downloads]  Common Sense Recommendations for the Application of Tax Law to Digital Assets, by Linda Beale (Wayne State) et al.
  3. [370 Downloads]  Loss Harvesting or Gain Deferral? A Surprising Source of Tax Benefits of Tax-Aware Long-Short Strategies, by Stanley Krasner & Nathan Sosner (AQR Capital Management)
  4. [252 Downloads]  Moore, The 16th Amendment, And The Underpinnings Of The TCJA’s Deemed Repatriation Provision, by Christopher Hanna (SMU)
  5. [248 Downloads]  Pillar One Amount B: Simplifying the Arm's Length Principle for Baseline Distribution Activities (Submission to the OECD/Inclusive Framework on 1 September 2023 in Response to the 12 July 2023 Public Consultation Document on Pillar One Amount B), by Lorraine Eden (Texas A&M; Google Scholar)

November 26, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Top 5 Downloads | Permalink

Saturday, November 25, 2023

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Top Ten 2Legal Education:

  1. Wall Street Journal, Why Are We So Obsessed With Sam Bankman-Fried’s Stanford Law Prof Parents?
  2. Aaron Sibarium (Washington Free Beacon), Anti-Israel Protesters Overrun Columbia Law School And Disrupt Classes
  3. Washington Post, Oregon’s New Bar Exam Alternative Is The First Of Its Kind 
  4. David Lat (Original Jurisdiction), Will Donna Adelson Plead Guilty In Dan Markel's Murder To Save Wendi From Prosecution?
  5. Tallahassee Democrat, Adelson Family Had 'Piles' Of Cash And Millions In The Bank When Dan Markel Was Murdered
  6. ABC News & Court TV, Judge Orders Ex-Mother-in-Law Of Slain FSU Professor Held Without Bond; A Look Inside The Adelson Family Dynamics
  7. Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education & Admissions to the Bar, Fully Online Law School Accreditation Standard
  8. Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education & Admissions to the Bar, Free Speech Accreditation Standard
  9. Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education & Admissions to the Bar, Law Library Collection Accreditation Standard
  10. Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education & Admissions to the Bar, Experiential Credits Accreditation Standard


  1. Laura Snyder (President, Stop Extraterritorial American Taxation; Board of Directors, Association of Americans Resident Overseas), Discriminatory Taxes And Congress: Do As I Say, Not As I Do
  2. Bryan Camp (Texas Tech), Lesson From The Tax Court: A Lesson In Pathfinding
  3. David Weisbach (Chicago) & Sam Kortum (Yale), Climate Change Policy in the International Context: Solving the Carbon Leakage Problem 
  4. Michael Graetz (Columbia), To Avoid The Moore Morass, The Court Should DIG It (Dismiss As Improvidently Granted) 
  5. Sarah Lawsky (Northwestern), Presentation Of Picturing Capital Gains And Losses At Boston College
  6. Wall Street Journal Opinion Pieces, Tax Cuts, Tax Loopholes, And Carbon Taxes
  7. Mirit Eyal-Cohen (Alabama), Review Of Moore, The 16th Amendment, And The TCJA’s Deemed Repatriation Provision, By Christopher Hanna (SMU)
  8. SSRN, The Top Five New Tax Papers
  9. Roundup, Next Week's Tax Workshops
  10. Roundup, Tax Policy In The Biden Administration


  1. Wall Street Journal, Department Of Education Imposes Largest Fine In History On America's Largest Christian College; Was It Targeted By Biden Administration?
  2. John Inazu (Washington University), The Lack Of Clarity And Courage In Higher Education On Hamas And Israel
  3. Christianity Today, Was Abraham Lincoln A Christian?
  4. Christianity Today, American Christians And The Anti-American Temptation
  5. New York Times Op-Ed (Ross Douthat), Atheism, Western Liberalism, UFOs, And Christianity

November 25, 2023 in About This Blog, Legal Education, Tax, Tax Daily, Weekly Top 10 TaxProf Blog Posts | Permalink

Steve Lubet's Final Class After 48 Years At Northwestern: Mic Marker Drop

Steve Lubet (Northwestern), Marker Drop

Lubet out. My final class at Northwestern.


November 25, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Calabresi: Amar Brothers' Moore Amicus Brief Ignores Constitution's Plain Meaning To Justify Taxing Unrealized Gains

Steven Calabresi (Northwestern), The Amar Brief in Moore v. United States Should Not be Embraced:

On December 5, 2023, the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in the most important federalism case since it upheld the constitutionality of President Obama's Affordable Care Act.  The case at issue – Moore v. United States – raises two vital matters:
1. Can Congress tax unrealized capital gains, as Yale Law Professor Bruce Ackerman argues in an amicus brief;
2. Can Congress enact a Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren-style wealth tax, including on unrealized capital gains, as the two Amar brothers (Akhil Reed Amar [Yale] and Vikram David Amar [UC-Davis]) argue?

Because of the huge importance of this case, I am going to respond in this blog post to the Amar brothers (one of whom is my second-best friend in the world, notwithstanding our disagreement in this case). They devoted the third section of their amicus brief to critiquing an amicus brief that I co-filed in Moore arguing against congressional power to impose a wealth tax or to tax unrealized capital gains – a brief which was joined by former Attorney General Edwin Meese III and by Professor Gary Lawson. ...

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November 25, 2023 in Tax, Tax Daily, Tax News | Permalink

25 Year Old Law Student, Presumed To Be A Hostage Since October 7, Found Dead Under Ambulance

The Messenger, Body of Shani Gabay, 25, Missing Since Oct. 7, Found Under Ambulance Set on Fire by Hamas:

Shani GabayIsraeli authorities said they had identified the body of Shani Gabay, a 25-year-old law student who was thought to have been abducted by Hamas terrorists during their October 7 attack on villages and a music festival in southern Israel.

Her remains were reportedly discovered beneath an ambulance that had been set on fire by Hamas at some point during the initial assault.

Gabay had been working at the Supernova music festival at Kibbutz Re'im, where some 300 people were killed by Hamas, but reportedly left before the attack began.

A last picture of Gabay being treated at a police command post, with blood flowing down her left leg, was posted to social media [right].

The Times of Israel:

Nearly seven weeks after the massacre at the Supernova rave near Gaza on October 7, authorities say they have identified the body of Shani Gabay, a 25-year-old who had been missing since Hamas’s attack on Israel, and who had thus far been presumed a hostage. ...

She called her mother at 6:40 a.m., telling her about the stream of rockets and asking what she should do, according to her older brother, Aviel Gabay, in a lengthy video posted on social media. She was in her car at the time, and her mother told her to pull over and find a secure place. She found a field shelter near Kibbutz Alumim and went there, not yet knowing at the time there were terrorists gunning down partygoers in addition to the rockets.

Terrorists threw grenades into the shelter, according to Gabay’s two friends who stayed in the shelter and survived, each one losing a leg. Gabay was pulled out of the shelter and appeared to have returned to her car, where she was shot. She made her way to a paramedic who took her to the police command post. ...

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November 25, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Friday, November 24, 2023

Weekly SSRN Tax Article Review And Roundup: Eyal-Cohen Reviews Hanna's Moore, The 16th Amendment, And The TCJA’s Deemed Repatriation Provision

This week, Mirit Eyal-Cohen (Alabama; Google Scholar) reviews Christopher Hanna (SMU), Moore, the Sixteenth Amendment, and the Underpinnings of the Deemed Repatriation Provision, 76 S.M.U. L. Rev. F. 156 (2023).

Eyal-CohenOn June 26, 2023, the Supreme Court in Moore v. United States granted the taxpayer’s petition to hear a rare case involving the constitutionality of section 965 deemed repatriation, a provision that was added by the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”). The question at subject is whether the Sixteenth Amendment authorizes Congress to tax unrealized sums under the deemed repatriation clause without apportionment among the states. Under section 965, a U.S. shareholder who owns 10% or more of a deferred foreign income corporation must include its pro rata share of the foreign corporation’s accumulated post-1986 deferred foreign income in its gross income (Subpart F income). The U.S. shareholder’s pro rata share of the foreign corporation’s cash position determines whether that amount is taxed at 8%, 15.5%, or both. 

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November 24, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Weekly SSRN Roundup | Permalink

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Tax Policy In The Biden Administration

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - linkedinMonday, November 27: Ariel Jurow Kleiman (Loyola-L.A.; Google Scholar), Shayak Sarkar (UC-Davis; Google Scholar) & Emily Satterthwaite (Georgetown; Google Scholar) will present Towards an Understanding of Nannies' Tax Experiences and Preferences as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here

Tuesday, November 28: Edward Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) will present Who Benefits from Corporate Tax Cuts?: Evidence from Banks and Credit Unions around the TCJA (with Benjamin Pyle (Boston University; Google Scholar)) as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro.  

Thursday, November 30: Edward Fox (Michigan; Google Scholar) will present Who Benefits from Corporate Tax Cuts?: Evidence from Banks and Credit Unions Around the TCJA (with Benjamin Pyle (Boston University; Google Scholar)) as part of the Columbia Davis Polk & Wardwell Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Michael Love

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November 24, 2023 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Judge Orders Ex-Mother-in-Law Of Slain FSU Professor Held Without Bond; A Look Inside The Adelson Family Dynamics

ABC News, Judge Orders Ex-Mother-in-Law of Slain FSU Professor Held Without Bond:

Court TV, A Look Inside the Adelson Family Dynamics:

Tallahassee Democrat, No Bond: Donna Adelson Has First Hearing in Leon County in Dan Markel Murder Case:

Donna Adelson sat silently in the Leon County jail as she learned she would remain behind bars after being charged in the 2014 murder of her former son-in-law Dan Markel.

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November 24, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Law Schools: Want To Help Bend The Arc Of The Moral Universe Toward Justice? Hire Law Professors With Public Service Experience.

Rachel Kincaid (Baylor), Law Schools: Want to Help Bend the Arc of the Moral Universe Toward Justice? Hire Law Professors with Public Service Experience, 58 U. Rich. L. Rev. __ (2024):

Richmond Law ReviewWe are living in momentous times. Social justice and the legitimacy of our political systems are at the forefront of many people’s minds. Demands for change — sometimes revolutionary change — abound, based on myriad crises: the murders of Tyre Nichols, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor; mass incarceration and the criminalization of poverty; the bungled response to COVID-19 and resulting economic precarity of many across the globe; threats to our democratic institutions and educational institutions at home and abroad; the erosion of reproductive rights, the environment, and tribal sovereignty; attacks on LGBTQIA+ people and their rights; and persistent and devastating levels of gun violence, to name a few. During momentous times like these, law schools can and should make a difference. But how we do that is a more complex question. Is it only through career services offices that encourage students to pursue careers fighting for social justice? 

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November 24, 2023 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Thursday, November 23, 2023

WaPo: Why Thomas Jefferson Hated Thanksgiving

Washington Post, Did Thomas Jefferson hate Thanksgiving?:

Thanksgiving didn’t become an annual national holiday until the days of Abraham Lincoln, but at the time of the nation’s founding, religious feasts (and fasts) of thanksgiving were a regular thing. Both the Continental Congress and Gen. George Washington declared days of public thanksgiving during the Revolutionary War after big victories. And in 1779, Virginia’s wartime governor, Thomas Jefferson, signed a proclamation declaring Thursday, Dec. 9, “a day of publick and solemn thanksgiving and prayer to Almighty God.”

But decades later, when Jefferson was president, he had turned against thanksgiving proclamations — privately complaining about them before publicly condemning them toward the end of his term. ...

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November 23, 2023 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

WSJ: This Thanksgiving, Cook The Turkey. Not Your Home.

Wall Street Journal, It’s Thanksgiving. Beware the Deep-Fried Turkey.:

Frying is faster and results in a delicious, juicy bird—but do it wrong and your house could burn down.

As some ambitious home cooks ready their deep fryers for Thanksgiving, fire officials are bracing for the worst.

An unthawed turkey can effectively turn into a bomb in a deep fryer, sending flames everywhere. Firefighters and federal officials are sounding the alarm over these avian tinder boxes.

“Cook the turkey, not your home,” the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission wrote alongside a social-media video of turkeys exploding in deep fryers.

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November 23, 2023 in Legal Education | Permalink

WKRP In Cincinnati Thanksgiving Turkey Drop

A Wall Street Journal Thanksgiving

Wall Street Journal editorial, The Desolate Wilderness:

Here beginneth the chronicle of those memorable circumstances of the year 1620, as recorded by Nathaniel Morton, keeper of the records of Plymouth Colony, based on the account of William Bradford, sometime governor thereof:

So they left that goodly and pleasant city of Leyden, which had been their resting-place for above eleven years, but they knew that they were pilgrims and strangers here below, and looked not much on these things, but lifted up their eyes to Heaven, their dearest country, where God hath prepared for them a city (Heb. XI, 16), and therein quieted their spirits.

When they came to Delfs-Haven they found the ship and all things ready, and such of their friends as could not come with them followed after them, and sundry came from Amsterdam to see them shipt, and to take their leaves of them. One night was spent with little sleep with the most, but with friendly entertainment and Christian discourse, and other real expressions of true Christian love. ...

This editorial has appeared annually since 1961.

Wall Street Journal editorial, And the Fair Land:

Any one whose labors take him into the far reaches of the country, as ours lately have done, is bound to mark how the years have made the land grow fruitful.

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November 23, 2023 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Houston Business & Tax Law Journal Publishes New Issue

The Houston Business & Tax Law Journal has published Vol. 23 (2022): 

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November 22, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

ABA Is Working On A Proposal To Increase Number Of Experiential Credits Required Of Law School Graduates

Following up on my previous posts on Friday's meeting of the Council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar:

Reuters, ABA Eyes Increasing Hands-On Learning Requirement For Law Schools:

Legal education may soon get more practical, thanks to a forthcoming proposal that is winning early support inside the American Bar Association.

The arm of the ABA that oversees law schools is developing a proposal to increase the number of so-called experiential credits students must take in order to graduate. The credits may include clinics, externships, and simulation courses that involve hypothetical legal tasks — intended to give students experience handling real-world matters.

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November 22, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Dan Shaviro's 2023 Holland Medal Acceptance Speech

Daniel Shaviro (NYU; Google Scholar), Talk at National Tax Association Holland Medal Ceremony:

On November 3, 2023, I received the Daniel M. Holland Medal at the 116th Annual Meeting of the National Tax Association. According to the NTA website: “The Holland Medal is the most prestigious award given by the NTA, as it recognizes lifetime achievement in the study of the theory and practice of public finance.” These are the remarks that I made at the Holland Medal ceremony.

Recipients of the Holland Medal (1993-2023):

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November 22, 2023 in Scholarship, Tax, Tax News, Tax Profs, Tax Scholarship | Permalink

Adelson Family Had 'Piles' Of Cash And Millions In The Bank When Dan Markel Was Murdered

Tallahassee Democrat, Adelson Family Had 'Piles' of Cash and Millions in the Bank When Dan Markel Was Murdered:

Donna Adelson, who was nabbed by the FBI trying to board a one-way flight to Vietnam before charges were filed against her in the murder of Dan Markel, had plenty of money to start a new life in a non-extradition country.

She and her husband, Harvey Adelson, a retired dentist with a once lucrative practice in Tamarac, their son, Charlie Adelson, a well-to-do traveling periodontist, and their daughter, Wendi Adelson, an attorney, had millions of dollars between them in checking, savings and investment accounts.

That doesn’t include the “piles” of cash that Donna and Harvey Adelson kept in a safe or the $100,000-plus dollars in stapled bills that Charlie Adelson forked over to his ex-girlfriend and two hit men. ...

Adelson family had more than $8 million combined at the time of the murder nine-plus years ago

Adelson Accounts

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November 22, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Sen. Crapo: Democrats’ Tax Gap Manipulation

Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho; Ranking Member, Senate Finance Committee), Democrats’ Tax Gap Manipulation, 181 Tax Notes Fed. 1457 (Nov. 20, 2023):

The IRS recently issued a new projection of the tax gap [IRS Research, Applied Analytics and Statistics, “Federal Tax Compliance Research: Tax Gap Projections for Tax Years 2020 and 2021” (Oct. 12, 2023)]. While the projection’s release received much attention and some hand-wringing from Democrats, it actually adds little to the previous estimate. Essentially, the new projection adjusts that estimate for recent receipts, not changes in compliance. 

The tax gap figure is used to gauge taxpayer compliance and projects the difference between taxes believed to be owed and taxes actually paid. Per the IRS’s projection, the 2021 tax gap is $688 billion, an increase of over $192 billion compared with the 2014-2016 estimate [IR-2023-187, Updated Tax Gap Estimate Shows Big Jump From Prior Years (Oct. 12, 2023)].

In releasing this information, the IRS pledged an “urgent” crackdown by boosting IRS enforcement, especially on high-income individuals, partnerships, and corporations. But the premise for this new crackdown is built on a flawed foundation, albeit a convenient narrative to support the IRS’s bloated budget and new auditing regime.

It is crucial here to understand what the IRS’s $688 billion projection is and is not. It is simply a projection of what the 2021 tax gap would be, assuming that the tax law and compliance rates from the 2014-2016 estimate are held constant and applied to the 2021 economy.

The IRS claims the tax gap is dramatically rising. This is misleading at best. ...

When viewed in proportion to the economy’s size over the last 20 years, the tax gap is actually flat and historically average. The Cato Institute examined the tax gap as a percentage of GDP and found that for 2021, the tax-gap-to-GDP ratio was 2.9 percent, squarely in line with the last 20 years of estimates.

Cato 3

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November 22, 2023 in IRS News, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Anti-Israel Protesters Overrun Columbia Law School And Disrupt Classes

Aaron Sibarium (Washington Free Beacon), Columbia Administrators Stand By as Anti-Israel Protesters Overrun Law School and Disrupt Classes:

Columbia (2023)Administrators at Columbia Law School stood by for hours on Thursday as anti-Israel protesters took over the law school's lobby, refusing to shut down an unauthorized demonstration that disrupted nearby classes for nearly three hours and violated several school policies. The law school has said nothing about whether the demonstrators will suffer any consequences.

The protest, part of which was captured on video, caused such a ruckus that Menachem Weiss, a third-year law student, left class to see what was going on. Standing beneath a banner that read "ceasefire now," which had been hung from a second-floor balcony, student protesters used a megaphone to broadcast their demands to the university.

The students, members of the Columbia Law Coalition for a Free Palestine, called on administrators to announce an economic boycott of the Jewish state and acknowledge that "students of color are endangered by Public Safety and law enforcement." They also demanded the establishment of a "Center for Palestinian Legal Studies" and a "task-force to protect students from Islamophobia."

"It was so loud I couldn't focus," Weiss told the Washington Free Beacon.

Columbia Spectator, Dozens of Law School Students Stage Sit-In, Read Names of Palestinian Civilians Killed in Israel-Hamas War:

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November 22, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Danso Presents Contemporary Perspectives On African Taxation Today At Boston University

Isaac Agyiri Danso (D.Phil. Candidate, Oxford) presents Navigating the African Tax Terrain: Contemporary Perspectives on African Taxation at Boston University today as part of its Just Taxation Workshop hosted by Steven Dean:

Isaac-agyiri-danso-spotlightAfrican taxation today has been shaped by the complexity of its socio-political and economic history. The contemporary tax architecture in Africa has been shaped significantly by its colonial past.  For instance, colonial era taxes were designed and introduced to extract resources, primarily for the benefit of the colonisers. These exploitative taxes on indigenous populations laid the foundation for widespread scepticism towards taxation among many Africans which persist to today. Today, African taxation reflects a dynamic interplay of these historical legacies, in the ongoing strive to mobilise domestic revenue to finance the continent's development.  

African governments are daring to strike a delicate balance between mobilising domestic resources, reducing aid dependence, and promoting economic growth and equitable development.

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November 21, 2023 in Colloquia, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Daily, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

WSJ: Why Are We So Obsessed With Sam Bankman-Fried’s Stanford Law Prof Parents?

Wall Street Journal Saturday Essay, Why Are We So Obsessed With Sam Bankman-Fried’s Parents?:

Joe Barbara SamThe operatic family saga showed us not just the deranging effect of parental love but the limits of privilege and good intentions in saving our children from themselves.

During the trial for disgraced crypto-wunderkind Sam Bankman-Fried, the courtroom artist did an inspired, almost abstract evocation of his parents at the moment of the crushing verdict. His father is bent over, white head in his hands, his mother is covering her face; the shadowing of their dark clothes merges them into a single mountain of unspeakable grief. Journalists in the room were equally riveted by their reaction, writing about Barbara Fried “crumpling” and Joe Bankman “doubling over” and of them “holding each other up.” Covering their faces would not shield them from the intense scrutiny aimed in their direction.

As Stanford law professors, they are an unlikely couple to be watching their son remove his tie and shoelaces as he is taken off to jail. Fried taught legal ethics, and Bankman has focused on financial regulation—details that would seem a little heavy-handed in their irony if they were in a novel someone was writing.

The wildest dreams and worst nightmares of a certain type of parent are entangled in the SBF story. Their child succeeded beyond their expectations and rebelled slightly by entering the world of finance, but upheld their beliefs by giving away huge portions of that money, but then flouted those expectations again by becoming a convicted criminal. ...

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November 21, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

WSJ Opinion Pieces: Tax Cuts, Tax Loopholes, And Carbon Taxes

A New Approach to Taxes That Pays Its Own Way (Op-Ed by Brian Deese (MIT) & David Kamin (NYU)):

Most of the tax cuts passed in 2017 are set to expire in 2025. Altogether, these cuts cost the federal government about $350 billion a year, or 1% of gross domestic product. Their expiration marks a milestone in American tax policy.

The tax system of the 1990s could have financed the government we have today. But two decades of successive unpaid-for tax cuts eroded our nation’s revenue base. Without those tax cuts, federal debt as a share of the economy wouldn’t be projected to rise significantly over the coming decade.

Americans can’t afford for politicians to keep having the same stale debates about tax policy. Unpaid-for tax cuts make it harder for the federal government to finance its obligations. It’s time for a new approach to taxes. ...

Given the magnitude of our fiscal challenges, we ultimately will need to raise revenue beyond paying for tax-cut extensions in 2025 and address other salient fiscal challenges, such as continuing to slow the growth rate of healthcare costs. But the greatest near-term fiscal risk the country faces is the possibility that policy makers won’t only extend the 2017 reform, but double down on these unpaid-for, regressive tax cuts. Doing so would deal a huge blow to market confidence and the economy. Tax cuts now would likely come at the expense of long-term growth and American pocketbooks.

Showing a commitment to pay for any tax-cut extension in 2025 is smart policy. It would also be a significant step toward instilling confidence in America’s commitment to meeting its long-term fiscal challenges.

Five Tax Loopholes for Mike Johnson’s Chopping Block (Op-Ed by George Callas (Arnold Ventures LLC)):

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November 21, 2023 in Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Will Donna Adelson Plead Guilty In Dan Markel's Murder To Save Wendi From Prosecution?

Following up on my previous posts:

David Lat (Original Jurisdiction), Judicial Notice (11.18.23):

Less than two weeks ago, I predicted that Donna Adelson would be arrested for the murder of her former son-in-law, Florida State University law professor Dan Markel. I just didn’t think that the 73-year-old grandmother would get taken into custody so soon. ...

What I had no way of knowing was that Donna Adelson and her husband Harvey would attempt to flee the country, buying one-way plane tickets to Vietnam—which, interestingly enough, has no extradition treaty with the United States. ...

Donna’s escape attempt was expected by the State Attorney’s Office for another reason: recorded jailhouse phone calls. As stated in the probable-cause affidavit for Donna, “Jail calls from after [her son] Charles Adelson’s guilty verdict include multiple calls in which Donna Sue Adelson is telling Charles Adelson that she is getting things in order, creating trusts, and making sure her grandchildren are taken care of. Donna discusses plans for a suicide, but also discusses plans to flee to a non-extradition country. Donna Sue Adelson has considerable financial resources to do this.” ...

I’m going to make a surprising prediction: at this point, I could actually see Donna pleading guilty.

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November 21, 2023 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Exclusive Article Submission Window For The Tax Lawyer

ABA Tax Lawyer (2022)The Tax Lawyer is offering an exclusive submission window for articles to be published in the Spring issue of the Tax Lawyer through December 1, 2023. If you’ve got a completed or almost completed draft of an article on any tax issue of 12,000-35,000 words, please submit it to Editor, Publications, at [email protected]. You can also submit via Scholastica if you prefer. Your article will be published by May 2024.

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November 21, 2023 in ABA Tax Section, Law Review Rankings, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Analysts, Tax Daily, Tax Rankings, Tax Scholarship, W&L Tax Journal Rankings | Permalink