View Full Version : Warren Buffett speaks when it hits his wallet

07-19-2011, 05:59 AM
I have a buddy that is a pilot for NetJets and we talked a while back when Obama was demonizing corporate jets. It seems Obama was doing his best to put these people out of business. Not specifically my buddy, but corporate jet pilots all over. Anyways, today I saw this video and thought it was about time Buffett acted a bit more "middle of the road".

Warren Buffett... (http://mrctv.org/videos/warren-buffett-not-fan-obama%E2%80%99s-corporate-jet-rhetoric)

He is in no way bashing Obama (which the reporter kind of seems headed) but he is laying it out there in plain terms that class warfare is not the way to do business (Democrat's favorite tool) and that it is important for the every day voter to actually understand how the taxes work and what is right and wrong.

I also like the fact that Buffett is honest about the taxes he/his company will pay/not pay. $7 billion dollar deduction this year (or close to it minus some exemptions). /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif My business right offs always made me happy but I never scored one like that. /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif

Back to my buddy...man what a great job it is to work for Buffett. As I understand it he is a very straightforward boss. No fluff, just do you job and you will be compensated accordingly. In the flying industry, as a pilot, there is no more sought after job. It was funny to see all the airline pilots faun over my buddy when he had on his coat. When he has to fly commercial to get back home, he is always upgraded and generally gets a visit from the pilot to "chat" during the flight. United even upgraded me to their business class (the plane did not have first class) just because I was with my NetJet buddy and we could sit together. /forums/images/%%GRAEMLIN_URL%%/smile.gif The airlines used to be the great jobs, UPS/Fedex have always been a good gig, but flying NetJets is what they all desire...


07-19-2011, 07:00 AM
There are some industries, especially those supporting conspicuous consumption of the very rich, that we would just be better off without. With old people starving and young people without shoes, a wise dictator would redistribute resources to where they are most needed. Everyone say, 'Amen' and go on about your business.

07-20-2011, 04:03 PM
This is odd from a man who thinks the estate tax ought to be brought back into force as much as before or more.

That would cost him (well, his beneficial heirs) a ton more money than whatever minimal benefit keeping the tax deductibility of corporate jets. Although maybe I've put my finger right on the answer, there?

07-21-2011, 07:41 AM
While it is easy to see the sarcasm, I think you are missing Buffet's point. He is stepping away from the extremes of his private life stating matter of factly that he pays gross amounts of taxes on his personal consumption of the jets. His main point really is that he disagrees that private jets are for the rich only. Buffett owns NetJets which provides corporate jets to the rich for personal use, but also to corporations for business use. His contention is that corporate jets are no different than any other type of transportation used in any other business.


07-22-2011, 02:44 PM
The use of private jets is exclusively for rich people. Personally rich, or rich corporations.

Non-rich people, and struggling corporations' employees, do not fly around on private jets.

Newt Gingrich's most recent FEC financial filing showed that he was in debt for his campaign $1 million dollars, fully half of that, $500,000, spent on private charter jets.

I've recently flown on two chartered flights for business purposes. Because of the commercial flights' limitations, we'd have had to pay for a hotel stay if we didn't, which helped make the higher price more bearable. One flight was a King Air turbo-prop, the other some newer executive jet.

The costs were very high, mainly for convenience and luxury, and I wouldn't repeat such chartering without an extremely important reason.

We wouldn't find the use of a luxury mega-yacht a reasonable deduction, even if it was used to take some executives to some business meeting. (That probably IS a deduction now, btw, however unreasonable it is.)

I guess the business purpose makes the travel deductible, but the luxury and extreme personal convenience side of the payment ought not to be. Maybe cap travel deductions at the price of a 1st class airplane ticket, and whatever hotel costs are saved?