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Economists Born with Silver Spoons Shouldn’t Talk Out of the Other Side of Their Mouths

Speaking to a real estate forum sponsored by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Mark Zandi — the Analytics Chief Economist for Moody’s — made the argument that limiting mortgage interest and property tax deductions for homeowners was a good way to cut the deficit.
He went on to argue that the real estate sector has received more support than another other industry, and it was “time to give back.”
Haven’t homeowners already given back through lost property values, short sale nightmares, and outright foreclosures?
The ability to deduct mortgage interest has been with us since the inception of income tax in 1894.
The ability to deduct property tax as well as state income tax (or sales tax in states that don’t have income tax) goes to the core of the concept known as ‘double taxation’. Double taxation occurs when income that has already been paid out in the form of other taxes should not be recognized as income and should not be taxed.
Removing the ability to deduct mortgage interest and property taxes will simply destroy what little is left of the real estate market.
I’m just wondering if Mr. Zandi needs a new silver spoon ... more

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