National Affairs: The Ears of Texas

Tax reformers are about as popular in Texas as temperance preachers at a liquor dealers' convention. The trouble with tax reformers, as Texans see it: they often point accusing fingers at the hefty 27½% tax deduction that the Federal Government grants to oil and gas producers as a "depletion allowance." The oil and gas depletion allowance, widest and most famous of tax loopholes, costs the U.S. Treasury on the order of $1 billion a year, and much of that sum stays in Texas. Accordingly, Texas' own Senator Lyndon B. Johnson had to do some tall explaining about the Democratic...

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