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Death tax agreement makes life easier

Death tax agreement makes life easier

By Mike Barnett

The cost of dying would have been a lot higher on Jan. 1 if Congress hadn’t stepped in at the last minute and dealt with the estate tax—commonly known as the death tax in farm country.

The certainty of what was passed into law and signed by the president beats the disastrous consequences if Congress hadn’t acted. We were looking at a $1 million exemption with an onerous 55 percent tax rate for the beginning of the New Year. That placed a bull’s eye squarely on the backs of almost every Texas farmer and rancher and would have taxed their heirs out of business.

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Keeping Our Resolutions in 2013

Keeping Our Resolutions in 2013

The following post is a reprint of The Ag Agenda written by Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation.

The New Year is upon us, which means many of you have probably made a New Year’s resolution or two. The funny thing about resolutions is that they are easier to make than to keep (I speak from experience). Come January 7, that piece of cheesecake typically wins out, while the elliptical machine is already starting to gather dust.

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Election Over–Can we work together?

Election Over–Can we work together?

By Gene Hall

President Obama has won re-election. Congratulations, Mr. President. On my Facebook page the past few days, I’ve been asking for some guidance, suggestions on how we might work together as a nation. This is the result.

Obviously some folks are still taking this hard, and winners gloat sometimes, especially in cyberspace. Fair enough, but we had better start thinking about how we can work together, and we are about out of time. I voted for the other guy, and I recognize the need for compromise. Part of that is supporting the president on some of what he wants and expecting to get something in return.

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Should death really be taxed?

Should death really be taxed?

By Glen Cope

Two things in life that often bring about the most grief are death and taxes. So when these two are combined, it makes for a cocktail of anxiety. Isn’t it enough that a family must deal with the grieving that comes from the passing of a loved one? Yet, political leaders in Washington, D.C., find it necessary to exacerbate that grief by taxing the occasion.

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Texas Farm Bureau’s time is now

Kenneth Dierschke, President, Texas Farm BureauThe following excerpt is from President Kenneth Dierschke’s address to convention delegates during TFB’s 77th annual meeting Dec. 5 in Waco.
For the Texas Farm Bureau—for the people who grow our food—this is a crucial time.

It is a time of potential danger and enormous expectations, a time of great challenge and potential reward. It is a time to harvest that which has been sown by generations of our members and leaders. 

This is Texas Farm Bureau’s time—if we have the will to make it happen.

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Tax compromise makes death a little easier

Texas Farm Bureau: Federal Estate Tax or death taxBy Gene Hall

The agreement on a tax policy compromise reached by President Obama and Congressional Republicans is good government. It’s been rare during the last two years to see the two parties reach over the great divide between them to accomplish something positive, something the country desperately needs.

First of all, raising taxes in this still fragile economy is just a bad idea. From that standpoint, it’s better for even the rich to keep, invest and spend their money and spur the economy than for Uncle Sam to take it away. 

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