Reality TV faces real estate realities
44% of U.S. taxpayers could owe $0

Shark's divorce tax issues resolved;
Plus, an Oz tax mirror

Professional golfer Greg Norman, aka The Shark or Great White Shark depending upon which nickname database you consult, and his ex-wife reportedly have reached a settlement on the financial dissolution of their marriage.

U.S. Open - Day 14

Although the 25-year marriage of Norman and Laura Andrassy officially ended last year, thereby allowing the golfer to wed former tennis great Chris Evert, Norman and his ex continued to fight over post-divorce money. Specifically at issue was who would foot the tax bill for depreciation on Norman's private jet. Norman reportedly wanted his first wife to pay half of the aircraft's $16 million IRS bill.

Both the Queensland, Australia, Courier-Mail and the Palm Beach, Fla., Post (Australian Norman used to live on Jupiter Island, just north of Palm Beach; he moved to Boca Raton when he and Andrassy headed for divorce court.) report that the couple has resolved the issue. The Florida paper says Norman and Andrassy will indeed share the plane-related tax liability.

Now golf fans can completely focus on the Ryder Cup!

Oz and U.S. tax differences and similarities: In looking for Norman news, I ran across this interesting item in The Weekend Australian: Four in 10 families pay no tax. In fact, says the online newspaper:

The number of families receiving more in handouts than they pay in income tax has jumped by 276,000 over the past four years to a record 4.113 million.

Meanwhile, another group of middle-income Australians are finding they are in a higher tax bracket 

A change in the Australian tax system apparently is to blame for the increase in the no-tax numbers. Bracket creep is blamed for the higher tax bills of the others. Hmmm. Seems like those same explanations (accusations) have been used here in the United States for various tax problems.

And underscoring the fact that taxes, and politics, are the same worldwide, members of opposing parties Down Under are blaming each other.

But, notes the paper, "Both sides of politics have bought off taxpayers one bloc at a time." Sound familiar?

Also falling into the been there, done that category is The Weekend Australian's conclusion that complexity in the national tax system appears to be the main long-term dilemma for the government.


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