December 30 Morning Edition

— Silverstein Has Petition Troubles, May Not Make it to Primary Ballot – Mary Ann Ahern


— New Illinois Laws 2018: Laws that take effect January 1


— Time at Mar-a-Lago is a respite for Trump — and a headache for his staff – Ashley Parker and Josh Dawsey
— DIERSEN HEADLINE: An anti-Trump says “In a 30-minute interview, President Trump made 24 false or misleading claims.”
— Trump administration fires all members of HIV/AIDS advisory council – Ben Guarino
— Cheap Amazon shipping leaves the Postal Service ‘dumber and poorer,’ Trump tweets – AP
— How 2018 will transport Americans back to 1968 – Editorial (DIERSEN: What did you do in 1968? I worked as a part-time mailman for the Democrats who ran the Park Forest Post Office. I was a full-time student at UIC. I lived with my parents and brother in Crete. I sold my 1968 Oldsmobile 442 and bought a 1969 Dodge Charger SE. I saved money for college expenses.)
— Bernie Sanders to Republicans: Stop saying I support your tax bill – David Weigel


— FRONT PAGE TOP OF FOLD WITH BIG COLOR PICTURES: Suburban homeowners flock to prepay property tax bills to beat looming deadline – Katlyn Smith
— FRONT PAGE: New consolidation twist surfaces about Naperville township roads – Marie Wilson


— Chicago Murder Rate Drops, But Not In All Neighborhoods – Patrick Smith, Natalie Moore


— Gov. Rauner announces staff changes
— Springfield’s Winter Warming Center seeing big crowds during first month – Crystal Thomas


— Abortion on decline in McHenry County Declines seen among most age groups, especially teens since start of decade – ERIC R. OLSON


— In 2018, Illinois needs to stop the decline – Editorial (DIERSEN: Members of Group A run Illinois and they focus on driving out of Illinois those individuals, organizations, and companies that are members of Group B. Members of Group A are anti-Trump, anti-Protestant, anti-conservative, anti-patriotic, anti-Republican, anti-American, anti-White, anti-male, anti-older people, anti-rich people, anti-gun owners, anti-German Americans, and/or anti-those whose ancestors have been in America longer than their ancestors and members of Group B are Trump supporters, Protestant, conservative, patriotic, Republican, American, White, male, older, rich, gun owners, German Americans, and/or those whose ancestors have been in America for a long time.)


— Governor rejects elderly home care plan – AP


— DIERSEN HEADLINE: Alton Daily News badmouths those who prepaid their real estate taxes; says they want to “skirt the new law.”


— Transgender Rights Lead NPR’s Top LGBTQ Stories of 2017 – DANNY NETT (DIERSEN: Soon, if not already, if you do not promote LGBTQ activity, you will be barred from getting an education, barred from getting a job, etc.)


— Year In Review: Trump’s 5 Biggest Clashes With Chicago In 2017 The president and the city were constant sparring partners throughout the year. But who won in the end? – Joe Vince


— Ives points finger at Rauner following report on Legionnaires’ outbreak at veterans home – Glenn Minnis


— Will County Clerk candidate McPhillips: Taxes causing residents to flee Illinois – Glenn Minnis


— Capitol Hill’s sexual harassment scandal reignites debate about thrifty lawmakers sleeping in their office – Chad Pergram
— Facebook rolling back controversial initiative to fight fake news


— Judge Upholds Controversial Bill Requiring Taxpayers to Fund Abortions in Illinois – THOMAS D. WILLIAMS, PH.D.


— REPORT: Obama’s DOJ Suffered From ‘Systemic’ Sexual Misconduct – Joe Simonson


— Is amnesty for DREAMers worth it if we get a border wall? – Ed Straker
— White Privilege: An Article of Left-Wing Faith – Eileen F. Toplansky (DIERSEN: To be accepted by Democrats, you have agree with them that the more of the following that you are, the more that you have benefited from discrimination against minorities and against females and the more that you should pay the price of Affirmative Action, Diversity, and Inclusion: Trump supporter, Protestant, conservative, patriotic, Republican, American, White, male, older, rich, gun owner, German American, and/or if your ancestors have been in America for a long time.)


— Mr. President: No DACA, Build The Wall, or No Deal at All! – Arthur Schaper


— Nonprofits are the unintended victims of the new tax bill – CHRIS GATES


— Don’t Cheer as the I.R.S. Grows Weaker – Editorial (DIERSEN: What do you base your knowledge of IRS on? I worked for IRS for almost 9 years, the last 5 1/2 years of which at the GS-12 Step 1-5 levels, currently $79,563-$90,173. I worked for GAO on audits of IRS for 3 years at the GS-13 Step-1-3 levels, currently, $94,610-$100,917. I have filed federal income tax returns since 1964 and itemized returns since 1972. I took IRS to Tax Court and won a split decision on my education deductions. Nevertheless my critics/opponents, their operatives, and their dupes continue to viciously demonize, viciously denigrate, and viciously condemn my knowledge of IRS.)
(FROM THE EDITORIAL: No federal agency generates as much rancor as the Internal Revenue Service, part of that duo of inevitability, taxes and death. Despite its reputation for toughness, the I.R.S. relies on voluntary compliance, as in Americans’ sense of duty, to collect the money that powers our government. That’s more true than ever, because as it prepares to implement the most sweeping tax overhaul in 30 years, the I.R.S. is perhaps weaker than it has ever been. In 1986, the last time Congress passed major changes in the tax code, it included a budget increase for the agency, allowing it to hire 2,100 more employees to carry out the changes. Earlier this year, as the agency struggled to do its job with a decimated staff, a shrinking budget and decrepit computers, its commissioner pleaded with Congress to at least give it time to prepare for the big tax overhaul Republicans wanted. That didn’t happen. Instead, Republicans rushed hastily written legislation larded with amendments through both chambers. Even before this hash hit their desks, I.R.S. officials were warning about the potential for a catastrophic breakdown that could imperil our tax system. Then, at its busiest time of year, the agency was given a week before the tax law goes into effect to translate hundreds of pages of conflicting provisions, potential loopholes and unintended consequences into coherent guidance for taxpayers.)
— America, Can We Talk About Your Drinking? More people are consuming alcohol in risky ways. That’s not a good trend. – GABRIELLE GLASER
— Germans Will Ring in New Year With Extra Security, Especially for Women – Melissa Eddy


— The GOP Tax Bill Has Affluent Homeowners Enraged and Confused – Eric Levitz (DIERSEN: Those who itemize their deductions have always been demonized, denigrated, and condemned as being affluent. I itemized my deductions 1972-1977 and my wife and I have itemized our deductions since we got married in 1978.)


— Ken Griffin Kicks in $3 Million for Soccer – Amanda L Gordon


–UK: Millennials will get an ‘inheritance boom’ – but too late to help housing struggles – Karl McDonald


— Why 20% of American households will not benefit from tax cut – Michael Busler (DIERSEN: One could argue that the tax bill is designed to reward renters and to punish homeowners.)


— Homeowners Lining Up to Pay Early Taxes Is a Sign of Blue-State Pain to Come – Henry Grabar (DIERSEN: Those who itemize their deductions have always been demonized, denigrated, and condemned as being wealthy. I itemized my deductions 1972-1977 and my wife and I have itemized our deductions since we got married in 1978. High real estate taxes depress home values.)

(FROM THE ARTICLE: And now, in these frigid waning days of December, come the tax bill’s first visible losers: wealthy blue-state property owners (and the governments their taxes support). In the four days since Christmas, homeowners have lined up at city halls across the Northeast, doing something whose unnatural aspect reveals the scale of damage the tax bill will wreak in the Northeast: voluntarily handing over thousands of dollars in taxes months and months in advance. Hundreds of people waited on lines at city halls and county seats from Fairfax County, Virginia, to the suburbs of Baltimore, New York, and Boston, trying to pay their property taxes while they remain fully deductible on federal returns. Starting next year, the IRS will impose a limit of $10,000 on all state and local tax deductions. Of course, the bracket here is pretty limited to a certain privileged class: homeowners who not only have enormous property tax bills but also the money and the wherewithal to pay them in advance. It is overwhelmingly a wealthy group, and one concentrated in a handful of Democratic states and counties. Real estate taxes make up only about a third of SALT deductions, but they are easy to pay in advance. And if filing now means taking $10,000 off your 2018 tax return, a little dead-week trip to the Finance Department could save you thousands on next year’s taxes. So it’s not surprising that early payers are dedicating a few hours to fixing cash-flow issues in cities, suburbs, and counties up and down the Northeast Corridor, and in Illinois, Texas, and California as well. On the one hand, it’s hard to drum up much sympathy for the winners of a home price run that has sent the collective value of real estate in the Los Angeles metropolitan area, to take one example, higher than the GDP of the United Kingdom.)

Author: David Diersen

The opinions that I express in GOPUSA ILLINOIS emails are based on experience that I have gained doing many things since 1948. I base my opinions on what I learned a) working for the federal government for almost 30 years -- Post Office 1966-1969, IRS 1971-1980, and GAO 1980-1997, serving on the Executive Committee of the Association of Government Accountants Chicago Chapter 1983-1996, and being a union member while I worked for the Post Office and IRS; b) earning an MBA from Loyola in 1976, a masters degree in accounting from DePaul in 1980, and a masters degree in financial markets and trading from IIT in 1997; c) passing the CPA examination on my first attempt in 1979 and passing the Certified Internal Auditor examination on my first attempt in 1981; c) serving as a Republican Precinct Committeeman since 1999, the GOPUSA Illinois Editor since 2000, the TAPROOT Republicans of Illinois Chairman 2005-2012, a member of the 2008 Illinois Republican Party (IRP) Platform and Resolutions Committee, a Wheaton Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee member 2003-2011, the Milton Township Republican Central Committee webmaster 2008-2010 and 2000-2004, an Illinois Center Right Coalition Steering Committee member 2003-2007, and an American Association of Political Consultants Midwest Chapter board member 2001-2004; d) attending the 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 IRP State Conventions as a delegate; e) being the subject of a nasty 4-page article in the February 1978 issue of Money Magazine; f) pursing litigation including Diersen v. GAO and Diersen v. Chicago Car Exchange; g) being married since 1978; h) living in Crete 1948-1972, in University Park 1972-1976, in Chicago 1976-1978, and in DuPage County, Milton Township, and Wheaton since 1978; and i) being baptized, raised, and confirmed as a Missouri Synod Lutheran.