Sunday, November 18, 2007

All Apologies

Not just a great Nirvana song, but what I am offering to anyone who came here from the Goose's Roost or Bflo Blog (or anywhere else) and got stuck reading the last few lame posts. What can I say? My dedication has been lacking. Also, the TaxWife has had me on this crazy diet the last week that has sapped my energy. Now that I've discovered cocaine, it's all good and I'm back to bloggin'...

The Taxes Update

Of course this week's big athlete tax news was Derek Jeter's tax woes. The taxman is coming after Mr. Clutch for his position that he is a nonresident of New York State and City, despite the fact that he maintains an apartment in the city and lives here half the year. The rest of the year he apparently lives in Florida.

The law on this is not actually all that clear. The first test is whether someone spends 183 days in the state. Assuming Mr. Worst Defensive SS in the AL actually spends the offseason in Florida and given the number of days he is on the road during the season, he probably is not physically present in New York State for the required 183 days.

The state is asserting that even though he does not meet this test that New York is still his primary residence based on his affinity for the city (e.g., his business ties in New York, holidays spent in New York, and, particularly, keeping items he holds "near and dear" to him in his New York apartment). This filing from the Admin. law judge in the case is illuminating. In taxgeek parlance, New York is his "tax home".

The idea is that while he may physically spend fewer than 180 days in New York, his home in New York is a home while a house in Florida is just a house - more like an offseason rental to which he has no connection. It's an interesting theory and to be honest, I haven't dug into the black letter law in New York to know if it would be enough, but we'll follow it.

The Tax Foundation notes that this is differernt than the "Jock Tax" that taxes a portion of every athlete's income in the state in which the game is played. New York is going after endorsement income, income earned in other states, etc.

Don't Mess With Taxes has a good piece on New York revenue officials' clutch performance in past cases.

The other big tax news was the continuing saga in DC of AMT relief. After some conflicting stories (it appeared for a day that the Senate would at least vote on a bill to provide a 1 year AMT patch with limited offsets solely for popular tax extenders), this do-nothing Congress continued to do nothing. So, it's at least December before any AMT relief is passed.

NFL Picks

No commentary needed (or necessary). You should be reading the Jamboroo for a funny NFL preview column.

Chargers (+3) over JAGUARS. Yes, I know people are jumping off the Philip Rivers bandwagon and that San Diego barely held on against Indy last week despite 6 picks (like Dallas against the Bills), but that defense is still solid and I think Garrard will have some rust in his first game back in a month.

Browns (-2.5) over RAVENS. Yeah, the Ravens really really suck.

Steelers (-9.5) over JETS. I almost took the Jets, but I cannot stand them. I mean, look at this guy:

Washington (+10.5) over COWBOYS.

DOLPHINS (+10) over Eagles
. The Dolphins have played almost everyone close this year. They're the best 0-9 team I have ever seen.

Raiders (+5) over VIKINGS

Cardinals (+3) over BENGALS

Chiefs (+14.5) over COLTS
. I don't care what Dr. Z says, Peyton is not the same without all of his toys. Just like the TaxBoy. If he's surrounded by the rattle, the horse on a string, the plastic balls that make noise, he's happy. If he has just the stupid fake phone? He throws six INTs.

LIONS (+2.5) over Giants. I'm a little surprised that the Lions are getting points at home, but then again, last time I went to Vegas, I came back looking like this:

Saints (-1) over TEXANS. This is where I call BS on one of the SportsGuy's theories - that early in the season nobody knows anything about the teams and that Vegas struggles just as much as the regular gambler. O.k. First, I don't believe Vegas struggles at all, ever, as compared to the regular degenerate gambler. Second, we're in week 11 and I still can't tell if the Saints, Chargers, Panthers, Washington, Seahawks, Cardinals and about 3 other teams are going to play halfway decent football or stink it up worse than Northrax.

Packers (-9.5) over Panthers. Case in point, although with Vinny starting and Steve Smith maybe not, this should be an easy one for the Favrers.

(Which reminds me of something else annoying - some moron talking head was talking about how Favre was doing this "all himself". I'm sure that Donald Driver, Greg Jennings, Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila, Nick Barnett and Charles Woodson were all happy to hear that. This team does have the second best rushing defense and fifth best defense overall in the NFC).

Rams (-3) over NINERS

Bears (+5.5) over SEAHAWKS

Titans (+2) over BRONCOS

BILLS (+16) over Patriots
. Hell Yeah! This game being on Sunday night is great for a whole bunch of reasons. 1. I get to do work during the day and not feel guilty about watching the game (which I will be doing totally sober due to the aforementioned f*cked up diet). 2. I get to hear John Madden talk about Turducken and Buffalo Wings at the same time. 3. Now I can watch the MLS finals without missing any important NFL game action (score update: 0-0).

Bonus: I get to bust out my Marshawn Lynch "Money" t-shirt, recently purchased from 289 design, even though he won't be playing.

Score Prediction: Patriots 31, Bills 20. (Hoping for the upset though).

That's it, all. Enjoy the games.

(I notice that I missed calling the TB game. Let's just say that I did not have Atlanta. That one is going in the win column)

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