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Uncle Sam spoils dream trip to space

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posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 08:37 AM
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Brian Emmett's childhood fantasy came true when he won a free trip to outer space.

But the 31-year-old was crushed when he had to cancel his reservation because of Uncle Sam.

Emmett won his ticket to the stars in a 2005 sweepstakes by Oracle Corp., in which he answered a series of online questions on Java computer code.



www.cnn.com...


Then reality hit. After some number-crunching, Emmett realized he would have to report the $138,000 galactic joy ride as income and owe $25,000 in taxes.

Unwilling to sink into debt, the software consultant from the San Francisco Bay area gave up his seat.




This is a shame... I love the idea of going into space and hope that some day I might get a chance.

I wish he hadn't given his seat up already, maybe we could have organized an ATS sponsored fund raiser to help pay the taxes, so that he could go into space and then come here for an interview about his trip?

would have been cool.




posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 08:47 AM
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thats quite cheap, i thought those rides were like millions of dollars. shame for him to miss out on it, it would have been an amasing experiecne, one that most of us on this planet will never see.

i wonder how much did he consider about going into debt for it, alright it may have been a big debt, but i wonder if he came close to deciding yes.



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 08:54 AM
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Uncle Sam wrecks damn near everything he touches. This is really nothing new, thus, Land of the Free, Home of the Permit.

I feel sorry for this guy. He came so close and had to choose between his dream and the almighty dollar. It's getting pretty bloody irritating.

F the US Government.



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 08:56 AM
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Originally posted by andy1033
i wonder how much did he consider about going into debt for it, alright it may have been a big debt, but i wonder if he came close to deciding yes.



The taxes would have been $25,000 .... I think that I would have to have gone in debt for that....



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:02 AM
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Originally posted by elevatedone

Originally posted by andy1033
i wonder how much did he consider about going into debt for it, alright it may have been a big debt, but i wonder if he came close to deciding yes.



The taxes would have been $25,000 .... I think that I would have to have gone in debt for that....



we do not know what his circumstances are etc...

but he will always look back and wonder what he missed out on.



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:05 AM
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Originally posted by elevatedone...The taxes would have been $25,000 .... I think that I would have to have gone in debt for that...

Twenty-five thousand dollars is a lot of money to some people, and not everyone is keen on being up to their eyeballs in debt. I'm one of those people.

I would do the same thing this guy did. I'd be upset about it for quite a while, but one must think long-range. That's the problem with a lot of people in the US. They don't think very far into the future and it gets them in trouble, usually in the area of personal finance.

Edited to Add: I give the guy a lot of credit (NPI) for knowing his limitations. It's an admirable trait, particularly in this day and age.

[edit on 1/29/2007 by Landis]



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:05 AM
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yeah... I'm not saying he should have gone in debt... just that if given the chance, I would have...



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:13 AM
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Wth, you have to pay taxes on trips or items you win in the US?
So if you win a 500k$ car in a contest like this you goto pay income tax on that too?

WTH?!

And then I got people in the US laughing at me because I pay around 40% income tax here in belgium, eventhough I usually end up getting a 2000€ tax return too.

You guys are getting robbed! This is rediculous.



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:27 AM
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Originally posted by thematrix
Wth, you have to pay taxes on trips or items you win in the US?
So if you win a 500k$ car in a contest like this you goto pay income tax on that too?



Yes, you pay on Prizes.... trips, cars, lottery winnings, whatever it may be... over a certain dollar amount I believe, I don't know how much that is though...



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:29 AM
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Originally posted by thematrix...You guys are getting robbed! This is rediculous...

You've got that right. We pay taxes on just about everything. We even pay taxes on taxes, which I think you Euros call VAT.

Life in the US is all about how badly the government can rape you and your checkbook while still keeping a smile on your face.

In my opinion, the US Government is one of the most corrupt institutions on the planet.

[edit on 1/29/2007 by Landis]



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 11:32 AM
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Originally posted by thematrix
Wth, you have to pay taxes on trips or items you win in the US?
So if you win a 500k$ car in a contest like this you goto pay income tax on that too?

WTH?!

And then I got people in the US laughing at me because I pay around 40% income tax here in belgium, eventhough I usually end up getting a 2000€ tax return too.

You guys are getting robbed! This is rediculous.


Any type of prize winning is taxed as ordinary income. I really don't have a problem with it for cash prizes such as lotteries, but its not something I agree with in cases such as this where a person may not easily have the means of paying it.

On the other hand, most of the time a person could sell whatever prize they won and still come out in great shape. Considering the nature of this one, it may not have been transferrable.


apc

posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 07:20 PM
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A software consultant couldn't cough up 25grand? What kind of software consultant doesn't have at least 25grand in mutual funds or money market? Is he surrounded by PS3s, and bigscreen HDTV, and the latest and greatest computer hardware or something?



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 08:07 PM
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This guy is an idiot. Why couldn't he accept the prize, then sell his spot. He surely could have got over $25k for it, which would have been some nice profit.



posted on Jan, 29 2007 @ 09:22 PM
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Originally posted by Landis
That's the problem with a lot of people in the US. They don't think very far into the future and it gets them in trouble, usually in the area of personal finance.
[edit on 1/29/2007 by Landis]


And thats why he gave up his seat huh?
Can we please not resort to anti-american generalizations here please?



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 01:30 AM
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We don't know his financial situation but enough to understand that 25 thousand dollar price tag for this free trip would have been enough to throw away a once in a life time opportunity. I do feel sorry for this man and do hope that perhaps some people do come together and bring forth funds for him to travel, hopefully like minded individuals pious enough to willingly let him share a piece of a universal dream: to see the cosmos.

Luxifero



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 02:45 AM
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Don't report it. The government will never know. I would talk to some clever tax agents. There has to be a way around this problem. And like others have pointed out there are some things about this article that just don't seem to add up. I'm not even sure why he had to pay the tax now. He may have won the contest but he hasn't received the prize yet and may never receive the prize. There is no guarantee that these private spacecrafts will work in his lifetime.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 04:10 AM
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Figures, just like always, the haves keeping the have-nots down.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 04:32 AM
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Originally posted by XphilesPhan

Originally posted by Landis
That's the problem with a lot of people in the US. They don't think very far into the future and it gets them in trouble, usually in the area of personal finance.
[edit on 1/29/2007 by Landis]


And thats why he gave up his seat huh?
Can we please not resort to anti-american generalizations here please?


What Landis says here is neither anti-American (next time capitalize it
nor a generalization. It is a fact of life everyone here is up to their eyeballs in debt, me included. And it is because we have been conditioned to use consumeristic reactive thinking.

I was talking to someone else today about how mind control is used extensively by food and beverage companies as one small example. Nuff said.



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 06:39 AM
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It's obviously income, so why shouldn't he pay taxes on it like we all have to pay on our earnings? Why is everyone jumping on the U.S. Government for enforcing the tax code? Elect congressmen/women who will change it. I'd hate to generalize, but from what I typically see on this board, I'm guessing most people here were all gun-ho for keeping the inheritance tax, and cursed any who attempted to do away with it. If I'm wrong on that I apologize. The only difference between this case and that situation is that in this instance, Oracle is still alive to deduct the $138,000 from their books and pass along the tax burden to this guy. Oracle is stingy enough to not pay for the taxes that they know (it's not like THEY can plead ignorance on tax code knowledge, with armies of accountants and tax attorneys) he will have to pay. No one is jumping on their case...why? They wrote off $138,000 as a business loss and got mega-PR out of it (and continue to with this news story) and come out smelling like a rose. What a joke.

In addition, if he would have just sold his ticket for the fair-market value, and then invested in even a low-earning U.S. Government guaranteed bond, he could have gotten back the tax money in 5 years. Evil U.S. Government indeed. Also, in 5 years the rates on these space flights will undoubtedly be lower than they are today. They might even be low enough for him to save enough off the previous price to fulfill a dream most Americans have (albeit more down-to-Earth and less news-worthy) called putting your kids through college. But he wasn't thinking about that. He wanted his toy NOW!



posted on Jan, 30 2007 @ 06:56 AM
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I will place a caveat on my last...I did not see it mentioned in the article, but if his winnings would not have taken the form of a generic 'ticket/pass' that could readily be resold, I would obviously retract my comments regarding him not selling his 'spot'. If that were the case, it would simply another strike against Oracle for not allowing him to re-sell his winnings.



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