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US president Donald Trump's proposal on tax cuts was short on details and hastily arranged to land during his first 100 days in office; it would result in a dramatic increase in the federal budget deficit. If approved by Congress—a long shot at this point—his plan would slash corporate tax rates and eliminate taxes that mostly affect the wealthy.
Mr. Trump’s skeletal outline of a tax package, unveiled at the White House in a single-page statement filled with bullet points, was less a plan than a wish list. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Gary D. Cohn, the director of Mr. Trump’s National Economic Council, laid out the bare bones to reporters, part of a mad dash toward the administration’s 100th day on Saturday that has included the resurrection of a health care bill and near-daily signings of executive orders.
But they offered none of the standard accouterments of such rollouts, such as detailed charts showing the cost of each provision, phase-in periods, the impacts of the proposals on people and testimonials on the program’s potential benefits.
The proposal envisions slashing the tax rate paid by businesses large and small to 15 percent. The number of individual income tax brackets would shrink from seven to three — 10, 25 and 35 percent — easing the tax burden on most Americans, including the president, although aides did not offer the income ranges for each bracket.
Individual tax rates currently have a ceiling of 39.6 percent and a floor of 10 percent. Most Americans pay taxes somewhere between the two.
The president would eliminate the estate tax and alternative minimum tax, a parallel system that primarily hits wealthier people by effectively limiting the deductions and other benefits available to them — both moves that would richly benefit Mr. Trump. Little is known of Mr. Trump’s tax burden, but one of the small nuggets revealed in the partial release of a 2005 tax return this year was that he paid $31 million under the alternative minimum tax that year.
Donald Trump summoned all 100 senators for a briefing on North Korea, but despite all the recent muscle-flexing from each side, senior officials say that the threat of an imminent clash has been overstated.
Pope Francis delivered a surprise pre-recorded message to the TED2017 Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, last night, urging attendees to focus on technological innovation that allows for "more equality and social inclusion." The Pope reportedly received a standing ovation from the audience, who were also there to hear from 2017 TED Prize winner Dr. Raj Panjabi. (He plans to use the $1 million prize to aid community health workers in remote or underserved areas.) The Pope's video message has also been uploaded to TED's website, where it has received over 400,000 views so far. In a blog post, TED's international curator Bruno Giussani discusses the process of putting together the Pope's appearance.
Writer/director M. Night Shyamalan revealed on Twitter that his next film will be a follow-up to both "Unbreakable" and "Split." The new film, "Glass," will feature Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, James McAvoy, and Anya Taylor-Joy, reprising their roles from the previous 2 movies. Apparently, the plot will concern Willis' everyman superhero David Dunn facing off in "a series of escalating encounters" against McAvoy as "The Beast." "Split" was a surprise hit for Shyamalan earlier this year, bringing in $275 million worldwide on a $9 million. "Glass" will hit theaters on Jan.
Google co-founder Sergey Brin is reportedly working on an airship inside of NASA’s Ames Research Center. When questioned about the ship, Brin said he did not “have anything to say” about the topic at the moment. People who are familiar with the project point to his general fascination with aircraft. It is unclear if the airship is part of a larger Google strategy or simply a hobby.
Former President Barack Obama reportedly received $400,000 for agreeing t...