Non-fatcat billionaire Warren Buffett announced last week that he is contributing an additional $3 billion of Berkshire Hathaway stock to charitable trusts set up for his children. Stock transferred to such trusts avoids gift and estate taxes.
At the 55% marginal estate tax rate favored by his close personal friend Barack H. Obama, the gift means $1.65 billion less in federal tax revenue. I eagerly await the condemnations from the usual quarters over Buffett’s unwillingness to pay his “fair share,” though I suspect the class warfare critics will keep quiet. It’s OK when Warren does it; it’s for the children.