As spring heads into summer across the United States, many Americans may be enjoying a frosty adult beverage. And associated with the purchase of that alcohol, Americans will pay a hefty tax. The taxes collected from so-called sin taxes serve as a major source of revenue for some states. Sin taxes can cover activities from tobacco and alcohol to casino and racing gambling. States collected over $32 billion in sin taxes in 2014.... but which state pays the most for "sin"
“The few who understand the system will either be so interested in its profits or be so dependent upon its favors that there will be no opposition from that class, while the great body of people, mentally incapable of comprehending the tremendous advantage that capital derives from the system, will bear its burdens without complaint, and perhaps without even suspecting that the system is inimical to their interests.”
“The 10 co-ops still operating with June 30 financials reported a cumulative loss of $202.3 million... Very little, if any, of the $1.24 billion in federal start-up and solvency loans to establish those co-ops will be repaid..."
Here are the gas tax rates, effective as of April 1, in every US state from the highest (Pennsylvania, Washington, and New York), to the lowest (South Carolina, New Jersey - yes NJ has a low tax for something - and Alaska).
A McKinsey study shows Obamacare insurers lost money in 2014 and the losses doubled in 2015. Amazingly, the study concludes there’s nothing to worry about because “30 percent of insurers nationwide were profitable.” Meanwhile, outright refusals to accept Obamacare mount. “Sorry, We Don’t Take Obamacare” is now a frequent response.
Less than a week after Reuters broke the story that the Department of Justice is probing HFT powerhouse Citadel, which admits it executes 35% of all trades by retail investors in U.S.-listed stocks, whether it is also frontrunning those orders (an allegation that many are convinced is a rock-solid fact) we find that billionaire Ken Griffin is not at all concerned about the outcome of the investigation on his core business model and is instead expanding. Citadel is acquiring the equity-trading operations of Citigroup’s Automated Trading Desk division, one of the pioneers of high-frequency trading.
It turns out that thieves are smarter than politicians give them credit for, and thanks to Proposition 47 that passed in late 2014, this is something California is learning the hard way. Now that any theft below $950 keeps the crime a misdemeanor, thus ending the possibility of charging those cases as a felony with a potential prison sentence, shoplifting has increased significantly, thus adding to the expense and headache for large and small retailers alike.
The race for The White House appears to have taken a backseat for a news cycle as the Republican "veepstakes" gets underway. Donald Trump said this morning that he would prefer a running mate with government experience to "help with pushing legislation through," adding that he puts a 40% chance that a former rival in the Republican race would get the nod. As The Hill reports, picking a VP could be a difficult undertaking, as some potential candidates might be hesitant to hitch their political future to a polarizing figure like Trump, but there will be plenty willing to roll the dice and join his historic outsider campaign.
For the past two weeks, Donald Trump has been on a tear, raging at how rigged the US presidential nominating system is. This is not a surprise to our readers: just two weeks ago we posted an article "The Year Americans Found Out Their Elections Are Rigged" which promptly went viral. And, judging by the Reuters/Ipsos poll, more than half of America agrees with Trump that the system U.S. political parties use to pick their candidates for the White House is "rigged" while more than two-thirds want to see the process changed.