Ready to Kiss Charitable Deductions Goodbye?

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No more federal tax deductions for mortgage interest?

No more federal tax deductions for charitable contributions?

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Should the federal government instead provide a 15 percent tax credit for charitable contributions?

Is there any way the creative community can sign on to this — if it meant eliminating the structural deficit?

The comments on the aforementioned article in the Chronicle of Philanthropy are extremely provocative. For example:

…The admirable American philanthropic sector which makes up for the services NOT provided by the government will crumble. What possible sense does it make to equalize the % impact of the charitable deduction across income levels? Lower income people can understandably not afford to give as much to charity, and this will not change that. It will simply reduce the incentive for large donors to give the already substantial sums they provide. Surely this will not pass…

And:

This is the worst idea I ever heard. While charities and non profits get money from the government…. not every body that could ‘take up’ the gift aid option, does…. Why? Because they have to tick a box, they have to do something extra in the beurocracy and people just don’t do it.. Also, if everybody ticked the box to take advance off gift aid the government would have to give the charities like ¬£800 million more funds. (it may not be that high but it is likely near that.) The charities can also begin to lobby for ‘more’ of the money as they have done here in Britain…. It’s $15 of the $100 today, tomorrow they will want more and pretty soon the charities are having more of a relationship with Government than they are with the Donor. This is a disaster waiting to happen.

And:

… I don’t think the people making these decisions have a clue how very desperate some of the non-profits are right now —- we are waiting on every donation received in the mail in order to ensure that we are able to deliver quality services to the families and children we serve so they can have a better life—let alone maintain the bare minimum that they are holding onto right now! Now the government is going to make it difficult for donors to continue to help —- very sad, very bad idea all around……

A random Google scan, however, shows not everyone is automatically against the idea. Examples are here and here.

Does the mortgage deduction save you from an economic sinkhole?

Does receiving a deduction for charitable donations make you a better citizen?

Are you willing to part with either or both of those to save the nation (presuming you agree with the premise that, in the economic sense, the nation must be saved)?

As artists, as a creative economy, what should we be willing to give up or sacrifice or live without? Anything?

Let’s discuss.