Welcome back to the Weekly QuizCap. This week, there’s a new tax bill on the street, junk science is found out, and one agency worth your money.
The House Republicans have unveiled a new tax bill called the Retirement, Savings, and Other Tax Relief Act of 2018. The bill would extend expiring tax breaks, expand retirement savings accounts and make small reforms to the IRS. What is the bill’s impact on the federal budget?
The Congressional Budget Office projects the bill will increase the debt by $54.7 billion over the next 10 years, including $23 billion in 2019 alone.
The Retirement, Savings, and Other Tax Relief Act of 2018 would extend which of the following provisions?
The annual tax extenders package includes a host of narrow special interest carveouts. While republicans had promised to eliminate these for years as soon as they achieved comprehensive tax reform, they still want to give away handouts to their preferred interests.
In March, a Joint Select Committee was formed to significantly reform the budget and appropriations process. When was the last time the budget and funding process was completed on time?
It’s been over two decades since the process worked and it’s only worked 4 times in the last 40 years.
The Joint Select Committee completed its work today. What was the result?
After deliberating for 9 months, the Committee could only muster up a few wimpy reforms that would only marginally improve the budget process. This package failed to garner the votes necessary to report it out for consideration by the full Congress – because of concerns that it did not go far enough or that leadership did not endorse it. The broken system is here to stay.
Recently, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released their annual Performance and Accountability Report. How much money did GAO help taxpayers save this year?
Over $75 billion! That’s a return of about $124 for every dollar invested in GAO. Finally, a government agency worth the money!
On the flip side, the Department of Justice Inspector General released its data on the number of recommendations that they have made that have gone unimplemented by the DOJ. How many are left open?
This includes 514 that are over one year old and 154 that are over 3 years old. The acting AG has a lot of work to do!
A recent landmark study conducted replications of experimental social science studies and determined a large amount of the studies were “junk science.” These “junk science” researchers use statistical cheating. Basically, if a researcher asks enough questions, they will get a statistically significant result just by chance. What percent chance do researchers have by asking a single question to get a significant result?
According to a recent article, “there is a 5% chance of getting a (nominally) statistically significant result purely by chance (meaning that the finding isn’t real). If you try to answer two questions, the probability is about 10%. Three questions, about 14%. The more you test, the more likely you’ll get a statistical false positive, and researchers exploit this phenomenon.” Why is this important to you? Because most of this junk science is funded by you, the taxpayer.
Thanksgiving is over and the holiday season has begun! Amazon says it broke sales records once again on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. What name did Amazon dub the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday?
Amazon officially dubbed the five days between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday as the Turkey 5 this year. Who knows, maybe Amazon will lobby its way to their own federal shopping day?
Amazon is member of a group of tech companies that Wall Street terms the FAANGs (Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Google). These stocks have had a tough go of it recently, losing how much in market cap value off their peaks this fall?
That’s a lot of mullah!
Momentum for a “Green New Deal” is churning in Congress since the Trump Administration released a climate change report that warned "hundreds of billions of dollars" will be lost in some regions due to storms, water levels, and forest fires. Though no concrete plan has been released, what are some of the proposals of the deal?
Though no plan, and therefore no cost, has been issued, you can be sure this self-described “environmental Keynesianism” (stimulus) will cost a fortune.
In the realm of actual legislation before Congress, the federally run National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is up for reconsideration. What is Congress planning to do with it?
The NFIP is $30 billion in debt, but coastal members like to keep the subsidies flowing to their constituents - so the program lives on without change.
What did Congress do this week to address our massive $21 trillion in national debt and $100 trillion in unfunded liabilities?
In fact, they are going in the opposite direct. The House is working on a $50+ billion tax cut and the Joint Committee failed to pass any reforms to fix our debilitatingly broken budgeting process. This Congress is going to finish how they started, racking up debt and problems for the next generation to deal with.