” Basically because he’s a rich, successful guy (which is why a lot of people are listened to on a lot of subjects).
To that end, economist and former Romney advisor Greg Mankiw has a short post talking about Buffett as a master of “tax avoidance,” wherein he lists four things Buffett does to avoid paying taxes. “
” Other folks, in the past, have charged that Buffett specifically benefits from the tax proposals he backs.
Tim Carney of the Washington Examiner has pointed out:
Buffett regularly lobbies for higher estate taxes. He also has repeatedly bought up family businesses forced to sell because the heirs’ death-tax bill exceeded the business’s liquid assets. He owns life insurance companies that rely on the death tax in order to sell their estate-planning businesses.”
Remember This :
” But if he were truly sincere, perhaps he might simply try paying the taxes the IRS says his company owes? According to Berkshire Hathaway’s own annual report — see Note 15 on pp. 54-56 — the company has been in a years-long dispute over its federal tax bills. “
And This :
” What is represented by the 6% or 11% statutory rate v. “paid” differential? “Loopholes”, aka the normal operation of the tax code. The taxes are not legally payable yet as a function of the tax code and may never be actually paid if the changes in asset values are not “recognized” for tax purposes. However it’s important to note that the 11% or 6% differences are not exactly chump change either. 5.9% of the pre-tax earnings total of $38.2 billion reported over those three years represents $2.2 billion in arguably “underpaid” tax and the 11.1% differential would represent $4.25 billion “underpaid” tax. If Berkshire were an “evil” oil company these figures would likely be spun this way. “