The Wealthy Romney’s are Just “So Charitable!” You’ve no doubt heard Ann Romney toot her own horn about how wonderful she and Mitt are for their “charitable donations,” which it turns out means donating to their own tribe, or church. But it isn’t exactly a donation per se. Like the rest of the 1%, Mittens uses the charitable remainder trust, which primarily serves Mitt and Ann themselves until they die, when what is left of the trust they have been draining, goes to the “charity,” their church. It is not that a church which has one of the steepest tithes in America is hurting for money, you understand. But the taxes Mitt avoids eventually comes out of our hides in either higher taxes for us, or loss of important government services and programs.
The charitable remainder trust is legal, but it is Exhibit A in the games the rich can play while pretending to be such wonderful benefactors. You see, as this Bloomberg article explains, they pretty much rent the church’s tax deductible status, pay no capital gains on gains within the trust, so the trust can grow even more.
In other words, they get a regular pay check from the trust on which to live. At the same time the trust can grow untaxed, much like tax-deferred IRAs. (Speaking of which, Mittens has also appears to have abused the rules for IRAs putting far more into one than is allowed. But I digress.) The “charity” gets the trust after both Romney’s die.
But there here is often little of the trust actually going to the charity. Meanwhile, you and I pick up the tab because Mitt doesn’t pay much in taxes at all. He pays none on the trust payments he gets. There are other similar tax avoidance schemes used by the Romney’s with respect to their charitable donations. And none of this discussion includes the taxes avoided by his offshoring money in the Cayman’s, Bermuda, Switzerland and other countries. I have said it before, some patriot (snark). Now we can say, some charitable donor (snark).