Churches should pay taxes?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by G51989, Apr 8, 2014.

  1. G51989 macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #1
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friend...cost-of-religious-tax-exemptions-71000000000/

    I thought this might be an interesting topic, should religious organizations pay taxes? I am kind of torn on this one.

    On one hand, you have the church's and chairtys based out of church's that actually do lots of good, and I do understand that.

    On the other hand, you have many of these organizations with owners or pastors living in mansions. That bring in millions of dollars. Donate to political causes, ( that right there should mean they pay taxes ),

    I am unsure of where to stand on it.

    Perhaps a good fix would be to audit religious organizations, and figure out which ones are actually charities and eligible for the non profit status, and figure out which ones are just powerhouse profit centers for their owners. Televangelists and Mega-church's come to mind. The Catholic church would be a toughie.

    The reason I say this, is because there is a large " Mega Church ", that is near my hometown, I will not mention its name. But I just noticed it last time I went home to visit, some of my old friends told me how great it was ( I am a huge atheist by the way ), but to shut them up, I went.

    The membership is something like 35,000ish. You go into this place, there is a Starbucks style cafe, big rock show, they bring in tons of money, dont do any charible work.

    " Pastor " has 3 Lexus's, a mansion, summer house on the gulf, and a jet.

    And he pays no taxes!

    Talk about takers ;)
     
  2. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #2
    Yes, tax them like any other business because that's all they are. Money spent for charitable purposes can be deducted like everyone else.

    Joel Osteen takes in over half a million in donations on a weekend and doesn't pay a dime in taxes. I'd like to see someone defend that.
     
  3. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #3
    What taxes in particular do you think they should pay?
     
  4. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #4
    Income taxes on all of the money they fleece from their congregants, because all they're doing is selling a product.

    If they spend their money on charitable purposes, they can claim a deduction if they have adequate proof, just like everyone else.
     
  5. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #5
    money was already taxed, should beggars on the street pay taxes on donations received?

    I should be free to give away my money that was already taxed when I earned it as I see fit.

    ----------

    what product is being sold? :confused::confused:
     
  6. lannister80 macrumors 6502

    lannister80

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    #6
    A service: providing warm fuzzies.

    If you go see a Fortune Teller or Medium or Psychic or whatever, I assume you have to pay tax on said transaction, right?
     
  7. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #7
    If I buy an iPad with my money (that was already taxed), Apple has to pay taxes on their profit from the iPad sale, even though that money was already taxed.

    The beggar on the street isn't making enough money to even owe taxes at the end of the year. If a church only brings in $3,000 in yearly donations, they shouldn't have to pay taxes either. If they're bringing in millions, then they should pay taxes just like anyone else.

    False hope. To quote the great George Carlin, religion is the biggest bull **** story ever told.
     
  8. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #8
    The pastor pays taxes on his/her salary. Now granted the don't pay property taxes but that is a local issue. I imagine some larger churches have positive incomes but most of your average churches spend everything they take in.
     
  9. Sydde macrumors 68020

    Sydde

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    #9
    How about property taxes? And how about open books, so that everyone can see what they own and where their money goes. If this here downtown parking lot belongs to a church that pisses me off, I would rather walk five blocks than let them have my dollar.
     
  10. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #10
    I'm sure the Government would be putting beggars on the "tax" list if they could quantify how much money they make per year. Of course, I doubt many beggars make enough to actually have to pay income tax, but whatever.
     
  11. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #11
    You underestimate the wages of a good beggar.

    You got that one right.
     
  12. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #12
    so BOTH of you would support paying taxes on political donations?
     
  13. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #13
    I would like to see some evidence on that assertion that churches are spending all their money.
     
  14. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #14
    Add my name to that list. Though I'd rather we just have all elections be funded by federal dollars to begin with, so there's that.
     
  15. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #15
    we agree on something :)
     
  16. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #16
    I'd rather see federal funding of elections and donations done away with.
     
  17. jkcerda macrumors 6502

    jkcerda

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    #17
    same here. but at this point would you support taxing YOUR political donations
     
  18. G51989 thread starter macrumors 68030

    G51989

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    #18
    Yes, very high taxes. I would even support removing private money from politics all together.
     
  19. Southern Dad macrumors 65816

    Southern Dad

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    #19
    That would take a lot of work. I'm sure the mega churches are making money but I've seen a rash of churches closing and merging in the past few years due to money problems.
     
  20. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #20
    Wouldn't bother me one bit.
     
  21. sonicrobby macrumors 68020

    sonicrobby

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    #21
    If they influence the judgement on our politicians, then yes. I believe they should pay taxes. It seems like the want to keep the state out of religion but no problem having religion affect the state.
     
  22. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

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    #22
    Yes they should. The Mormon churches would be a good example of a church making plenty of cash ;)
     
  23. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #23
    That likely comes from there being far too many churches in some areas. I live in a town of about 6.6k people and we have about 12 or so churches.
     
  24. Menel macrumors 603

    Menel

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    #24
    Services and labor are generally not taxed. E.g. a mechanic. If you need a new waterpump.

    $100 in parts + tax
    $120 in labor, no tax
     
  25. Michael Goff macrumors G3

    Michael Goff

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    #25
    The income from said service is taxed, though.
     

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