Chuck Collins

Chuck Collins is a senior scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies where he co-edits, and author of the new book, Born on Third Base: A One Percenter Makes the Case for Tackling Inequality, Bringing Wealth Home, and Committing to the Common Good

Recent Articles

A Lost Opportunity to Help Small Business

For Main Street small businesses, the benefits of the Tax Act are peanuts. Nearly half of all the savings go to people making over $1 million a year.

AP Photo/Keith Srakocic Where's My Tax Cut? Despite the claims about small business, the Tax Act is heavily tilted toward large corporations. This article appears in the Summer 2018 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . T he small-business community is all too familiar with being used as a prop for tax cuts for the wealthy. From estate tax repeal to the corporate income tax cuts, “helping small business” is the go-to fig leaf for Republican tax-slashers. “It is a tried and true tradition of big business to say they are doing something to help small business when just helping themselves,” says Frank Knapp, president and CEOof the South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce and co-chair of Businesses for Responsible Tax Reform. “Small businesses are one of the most appreciated institutions in the nation, in contrast to big business.” Small-business advocates like to point out that they are the real job-creators in the U.S. economy, having created nearly two-...

How to Restore Taxes on Inheritances

With the estate tax further weakened, is it time to pivot to an inheritance tax?

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File Since 2000, a growing number of wealthy U.S. nationals have deployed the offshore system and complex trusts to dodge estate levies and other taxes, including by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, fashion designer Ralph Lauren, DISH Network Chairman Charles Ergen, and 84 current and former partners from Goldman Sachs, including CEO Lloyd Blankfein (pictured, above). This article appears in the Summer 2018 issue of The American Prospect magazine. Subscribe here . A s part of the 2017 tax bill, Congress came within a whisker of abolishing the estate tax. In the end, Congress weakened the century-old levy on inherited wealth paid exclusively by multi-millionaires and billionaires. The estate tax was one of the substantive negotiating points of the joint tax conference committee that reconciled the differences between House and Senate versions in December 2017. House Republicans, fulfilling a decades-old aspiration, voted along party lines to abolish the tax...

Hillary Clinton Channels Her Inner Teddy Roosevelt

Clinton’s announcement to expand the federal estate tax on the wealthy is a bold step towards addressing today’s skyrocketing inequality.

AP Photo/Matt Rourke
AP Photo/Matt Rourke Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a campaign stop at the Frontline Outreach Center in Orlando, Florida, Wednesday, September 21, 2016. H illary Clinton’s proposal to strengthen the federal estate tax is the best idea yet to reverse our national drift toward extreme wealth inequality. Clinton proposes an expansion of the federal estate tax, our nation’s only levy on the transfer of accumulated wealth of multimillionaires and billionaires. The tax falls on fewer than two out of 1,000 estates, yet puts a brake on concentrated wealth, encourages charitable giving, and raises substantial revenue from those most able to pay. Her plan would generate $260 billion over ten years, exclusively from multimillionaires and billionaires, that she plans to use for investments in expanding opportunity, such as reducing college debt, simplifying small business taxes and expanding the child tax credit. The estate tax, which celebrates its 100th...

Bernie, Pope Francis, and the Moral Economy

A lay person’s primer on Catholic social teaching. 

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP Images
Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call/AP Images Senator Bernie Sanders speaks during a rally with striking federal workers at the Lutheran Church of the Reformation on East Capitol Street NE, September 22, 2015. The event was organized on the day Pope Francis, who is an advocate for low income workers, arrived in Washington. B ernie Sanders is on his way to the Vatican, with high hopes of a meeting with Pope Francis. Wouldn’t you love to be a fly on the wall during that conversation? I imagine them bonding over the moral economy and their shared concern about the idolatry of money. Between them stands a rich tradition of Jewish and Christian teachings on economic life. Sanders will be addressing the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences about the “moral economy.” But it’s no secret he’d love an audience with the pontiff. “It’s something I would be very proud to see happen,” Mr. Sanders told The Washington Post about the prospect of meeting Pope Francis. “I believe that the pope has been an...