Public Citizen has released an analysis of the new trade deal with Canada and Mexico, but contrary to early news reports stating that the hated "investor-state dispute settlement" system remains intact (which I apologize for having relied upon), Public Citizen finds that the USMCA would terminate the ISDS system between the U.S. and Canada (though not until three years after the deal gets ratified) and narrow the scope of the ISDS system between the U.S. and Mexico. I won't lie to you, that's a big deal -- all ISDS systems do is nullify our laws and exact bailouts from taxpayers. But the deal also needs stronger labor and clean air/clean water enforcement mechanisms, and must scrap welfare handouts for big pharma corporations. So Public Citizen helps you tell your Congressfolk how they can improve the USMCA trade deal. Don't let anyone tell you that you should just "let the negotiators work." The negotiators work for us, after all.
Meanwhile, our IRS is proposing changing a federal charitable deduction so that the rich won't be able to take so much advantage of it. Long story short: in some states, when folks donate to private school voucher programs, they're able to turn a profit on those deductions by claiming both state and federal tax credits, such that (for example) an Alabama resident could collect over $67,000 in deductions on $50,000 in donations. That kinda flies in the face of the whole definition of charity, doesn't it? The IRS's proposal could be stronger -- you and I don't get to simply deduct our charitable donations from our tax bill, but the IRS proposal would still allow someone to get 100% of their private school donations back. Our IRS is still taking public comments on their proposal, but only until Friday; you can click here to leave a comment.