If you said corporations, you'll be surprised to learn that a mere 8% of special interest tax breaks go to corporations. So....where? The Washington Post By: Lori Montgomery September 18, 2011 1. As President Obama and congressional Republicans argue over how to rewrite the U.S. tax code, the debate has revolved around "loopholes" for corporate jets and ending "carve-outs" for well-heeled special interests. But if the goal is debt reduction, that's not where the money is. 2. Broad tax breaks granted to millions of families at all income levels dwarf the corporate giveaways. Over the past two years, largely because of these popular benefits in the federal income tax code, the government has reached a rare milestone in tax collection - it has given away nearly as much as it takes in. 3. The number of tax breaks has nearly doubled since the last major tax overhaul 25 years ago, with lawmakers adding new benefits for children, college tuition, retirement savings and investment. At the same time, some long-standing breaks have exploded in value, such as the deduction for mortgage interest and the tax-free treatment of health-insurance premiums paid by employers. 4. All told, federal taxpayers last year received $1.08 trillion in credits, deductions and other perks while paying $1.09 trillion in income taxes, according to government estimates. 5. Only about 8 percent of those benefits went to corporations. (The write-off for corporate jets equals about .03 percent of the total.) The bulk went to private households, primarily upper-middle-class families that Obama has vowed to protect from new taxes. 6. "The big money is in the middle-class subsidies," said Syracuse University economist Leonard Burman, former director of the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. "You're not going to balance the budget by eliminating ethanol credits. You have to go after things that really matter to a lot of people." 7. These tax breaks weave an invisible web of government benefits that now costs nearly as much as the Pentagon and all other federal agencies combined. But "tax expenditures," as they are known in Washington, get no routine oversight. …The congressional Joint Committee on Taxation lists more than 300 breaks, while Treasury tallies 172. 8. Edward Kleinbard, a University of Southern California law professor who served until recently as chief of staff to the Joint Committee on Taxation, says tax breaks are now the dominant instrument for creating new spending programs….In 1997, after a Republican Congress refused to increase spending for federal student loans, President Bill Clinton turned to the tax code to create a slew of higher-education credits. 9. In 2009, when Obama wanted to boost the flagging economy, he offered a massive new tax break as the centerpiece of his stimulus package. The Making Work Pay credit put about $60 billion a year in people's pockets in 2009 and 2010, including $18 billion in "refundable" payments to low-income families… 10. Georgetown University law professor John Buckley recently estimated that 95 percent of the revenue lost to tax expenditures is concentrated in 10 categories that aid families and advance popular policy goals. The "special-interest stuff," he said, such as write-offs for corporate jets, is minuscule by comparison - "unless we're all special," he said. Tax breaks pile up, grow more costly - CFED News Clips Another one of this Left-wing bumper stickers shot to hell.