From the August 2009 issue of Investment Advisor • Subscribe!

A New Kind of Taxpayer Advocacy

More On Tax Planning

from The Advisor's Professional Library
  • Selected Provisions of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 The experts of Tax Facts have produced this comprehensive analysis of selected provisions of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the Act) to provide the most up-to-date information to our subscribers. This supplement analyzes important changes to the tax code with emphasis on how these developments impact Tax Facts’ major areas of focus: Employee Benefits, Insurance, and Investments.
  • Charitable Giving Charitable giving can reduce your clients’ tax liabilities. However, the general and verification rules for the deduction of charitable gifts must be understood in order to take full tax advantage of such gifts.

As a multitude of groups (see lead news story)--are making their voices heard in Washington, a smaller organization is just getting started in its advocacy efforts. The Institute of Mass Affluent Studies ( is meant to advocate for the mass affluent segment of American society, that segment of the population that the Institute argues in its "Premise" is the one that "provides economic leadership as a highly productive and essential component of the nation's financial resiliency and health. As a distinct economic group, this segment leads society in entrepreneurship, job creation, wealth generation, tax revenues, and charitable gifting." Yet unlike the poor and middle-class, and the wealthy, the Institute argues that this group has not received sufficient political consideration equal to its economic clout, nor has it been sufficiently studied. Moreover, the group argues that the mass affluent's "financial strength and leadership role has been damaged by the economic crisis and will be more so in the future with proposed disproportionate tax policy at all levels."

That's what the Institute hopes to redress through its "Advocacy Through Fact" approach. The Institute's president, Alec Farley, says the effort is "critical to preserve our economic engine," and using a boating analogy, argues "it is the sail of the mass affluent that needs wind for the U.S. economy to begin to make headway."

Mitch Politzer, president of Spectrem Consulting and formerly of Ameritas, says the issue "is becoming more prominent than ever," citing moves by the Administration on everything from an initiative to tax employee benefits to increased taxes for healthcare reform. Politzer says the Institute is not a lobbying group, but instead "wants to advocate fact" to get its point across, "by ferreting out facts and publishing them."

Reprints Discuss this story