Taxing the Churches
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03-08-2013, 04:36 AM (This post was last modified: 03-08-2013 04:40 AM by Question.)
RE: Taxing the Churches
Currently it is unconstitutional. And truthfully I don't see that changing anytime soon.

But they already nose their way into our politics, hell, atheists can't even hold office in some states. So I say go ahead - you bitch you pay. I like that, put that on a T Shirt.
You bitch you pay.

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03-08-2013, 01:46 PM
RE: Taxing the Churches
(01-08-2013 02:14 PM)Bucky Ball Wrote:  However everyone and every thing should pay local property taxes. They all make use of local fire and police and infrastructure as much if not more than anyone else. Often the wealthy churches occupy VERY expensive property. THEY should be taxed, simply by virtue of where they CHOOSE to locate.

This seems very sensible. If they're using publicly-funded resources, they should have some responsibility to pay for those services. Many of the churches require special traffic control at certain times since releasing their drones after their Sunday "cerebral cleansing" is a safety hazard.

Here's another oddity: My wife (who's a believer) went to a local mega-church where they sold Starbucks and other retail foods. Most mega-churches also sell books, T-shirts and similar goods. I really don't see how this is not for-profit, so I don't understand how they cannot be taxed on retail sales, either.

I guess they could just "launder" the retail numbers, but they could also be audited and if they're found in violation, they should lose their tax-exempt status.

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03-08-2013, 09:38 PM
RE: Taxing the Churches
Churches aren't taxed and they are already deeply involved in politics and making inroads into the public sphere. Might as well squeeze them for tax money if they aren't going to lobby like any other organization.

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04-08-2013, 02:22 AM
RE: Taxing the Churches
Mega-churches gaining millions in income should be taxed, simple as that.. We can't even sell on Ebay making a few bucks without reporting to the IRS. Why should they be exempt ? Donations or not.

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04-08-2013, 06:03 AM
RE: Taxing the Churches
All donations should be income. All property taxed.
Churches are nothing more than an entertainment and counseling business that is subsidized by all.

T.H.
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04-08-2013, 10:07 AM
RE: Taxing the Churches
(01-08-2013 12:37 PM)eksyte Wrote:  If we tax churches, how can we still keep them from not having a direct say on legal issues, politics, etc.? One of the primary defenses for keeping religion out of public schools, courthouses, public parks and other related areas is that these are funded by public money, but if we start taxing churches, how can we still say these things are not funded by religion and also deny them a direct say in how they're run?

Churches are already very involved in politics.
Religious organisations donate to/run PAC's already and preachers of congressmen and presidents already have a special ear.
And what about religious people getting elected to office. Jimmy Carter, Mike Huckabee.

Taxing religions would put them on the same foot as other for-profit companies.

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06-08-2013, 03:30 PM
RE: Taxing the Churches
The biggest problem I see is that most income for churches (at least for the catholic ones) is based on donations. Therefore there is no tax associated with it. In the same way my parents aren't taxed when they give me money. Also many churches do use their hall for charitable uses such as "out of the cold". And that would probably just direct collection money away from charities to the government. In Toronto most collections go to share life where 97% of the money goes to help 71000 people. (At least according to their flyer).

Also many of the high land tax churches in Toronto are over 100 years old. People raise all when a 50 year old warehouse is to be torn down. Imagine reposesing a church. Most of them are only suitable for being churches.

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06-08-2013, 10:29 PM
RE: Taxing the Churches
(03-08-2013 04:36 AM)Question Wrote:  Currently it is unconstitutional. And truthfully I don't see that changing anytime soon.

But they already nose their way into our politics, hell, atheists can't even hold office in some states. So I say go ahead - you bitch you pay. I like that, put that on a T Shirt.
You bitch you pay.

Actually, that is not quite true. The Supreme Court upheld tax exemptions in a 1970 case out of NY. The essence of the ruling was that because the exemptions were granted to all churches they were not a government establishment of religion...which sort of misses the point. Walz v. Tax Commission of the City of New York,

There is no constitutional right to a tax exemption. Non-profit groups apply under Sec. 501 C 3 of the Internal Revenue Code and this summer's dust up with the Sec 501 c 4 applications of the various tea bagger groups is similar except they are not supposed to engage in political activity...which is exactly what they wanted to do.

Churches which engage in politics to the point of endorsing candidates are supposed to lose their tax exempt status. That said, I spent 33 years with the IRS and never heard of them going after any sort of established church. About the most I can remember is a bunch of shitheads who called themselves the Order of St. Matthew and called their homes "churches" getting busted. I'd have loved to see some archbishop led away in handcuffs.
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06-08-2013, 10:42 PM
RE: Taxing the Churches
Tax them
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07-08-2013, 01:48 AM
RE: Taxing the Churches
(06-08-2013 10:29 PM)Minimalist Wrote:  Actually, that is not quite true. The Supreme Court upheld tax exemptions in a 1970 case out of NY. The essence of the ruling was that because the exemptions were granted to all churches they were not a government establishment of religion...which sort of misses the point. Walz v. Tax Commission of the City of New York,

There is no constitutional right to a tax exemption. Non-profit groups apply under Sec. 501 C 3 of the Internal Revenue Code and this summer's dust up with the Sec 501 c 4 applications of the various tea bagger groups is similar except they are not supposed to engage in political activity...which is exactly what they wanted to do.

Churches which engage in politics to the point of endorsing candidates are supposed to lose their tax exempt status. That said, I spent 33 years with the IRS and never heard of them going after any sort of established church. About the most I can remember is a bunch of shitheads who called themselves the Order of St. Matthew and called their homes "churches" getting busted. I'd have loved to see some archbishop led away in handcuffs.

The SCOTUS decision was made on the grounds that government is not to hold any power over religious institutions, which I already established.

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