Getting Smart with Money: The Confusion and Gridlock Issue

Here are three articles I found this week that you might enjoy or find useful. 

1.  Have You Ever Felt Sorry for the IRS? Now Might Be the Time
While it is hard to muster much sympathy for the most-hated bureaucratic institution in American government, the folks at the IRS are in the unenviable position of having to implement and enforce the recently passed tax bill. What happens when you combine a hastily passed piece of legislation (written mostly in secret, in pencil, in the margins) with an antiquated and understaffed bureaucracy recently rocked by scandal and leadership turnover? Grab some popcorn and watch as this slow train wreck unfolds starting in early 2018! 

2.  IRS Says Many Who Prepaid Property Taxes Still Face Cap On Deductions
State and local tax authorities found themselves in the undesirable position of accepting property tax payments from taxpayers hoping to save some on their federal taxes, only to be told by the IRS that some of these prepayments would not be allowed as a deduction. While most taxpayers can deduct property taxes already assessed in 2017, the IRS is still capping property tax deductions for many taxpayers trying to accelerate payments for future tax periods. Still confused?  This article might help, but expect more uncertainty as new elements of the tax law get rolled out.

3. What’s a Wendy’s Doing There? The Story of Washington’s Weirdest Traffic Circle
At first glance, this article has very little to do with my life (and probably yours): I don’t live in Washington DC; I don’t frequent Wendy’s; and I don’t consider myself a traffic circle connoisseur. Still, I found myself captivated by one of the best journalistic pieces I’ve read in 2017:  The story and history of a bastard piece of land in our nation’s capital that is symbolic of the gridlock and short-sighted planning that has become our federal government (and US tax code). 

Let me know what you think about this week’s articles. I love hearing from you!
- Shay