All posts categorized with: Law & Philanthropy

Philanthropy and the Federal Income Tax: Should our Republic Subsidize Tocqueville’s Democracy?

The U.S. Internal Revenue Code’s charitable exemption and deduction clearly treat philanthropy favorably; the question for tax theory has always been why, and how well.

The Good, the Bad, and the Charitable

Robert Atkinson and William Dennis both critique the philanthropic tax exemption in the United States in a manner reminiscent of Augustine’s early pleas for chastity: “IRS, grant me taxation, but not yet.” Although both essays point to current problems generated by the exemption, the writers recognize that when bad policies are deeply entrenched, the exemption might serve as a coping mechanism.

Trading in Tocqueville: Philanthropy in an Era of Philanthrocapitalism, L3Cs, and Social Innovation Bonds

William Dennis opens “A Radical Reform for Nonprofit Tax Exemption: A Thought Experiment” with a compelling quote from Richard C.

Tocqueville or Austerity? Health Care and the Social Compact

Aboard the Arbella in 1630, John Winthrop composed “A Modell of Christian Charity,” outlining a social compact by which the Puritan settlers in the New World might “be all knit more nearly together in the Bond of brotherly affection.” Almost four centuries later, America’s democratic society still rests on a tacit social compact enjoining us to seek to balance and maximize individual liberty, personal responsibility, and the public good.

Second Thoughts on Tax Treatment of American Philanthropy

The essays by William Dennis and Robert Atkinson suggest possible reforms of the tax treatment of American philanthropy.