Famous Tax Protest

Greetings, friends.

Since tax time is here, I thought it might be interesting to review one of the most famous tax protests in the history of the southwest.

Ettore “Ted” DeGrazia (1909-1982) was a famous artist whose works have been reproduced as prints, greeting cards, figurines, and dinner plates. In 1960, his painting “Los Ninos” (the Children) was chosen as a UNICEF greeting card. The card sold millions nationwide. After this, the value of DeGrazia’s work soared.

As a result, the I R S assesed his works at what they assumed to be their market value. DeGrazia accused the tax people of making him a millionaire on paper.  This would leave his heirs with huge estate taxes that they would not be able to pay.

To protest, Ted is reported to have taken 100 of his works, valued at 18 million dollars, up into the Superstition Mountains and set fire to them.

That’s definately making a statement!

I have read that there are some who think he may have stashed these paintings

,  and staged a mock burning.  Since many of his paintings are still for sale at the expansive gallery he built in the foothills of the Catalina mountains overlooking Tucson, I like to think this rumor is true.

On another note, The Arizona Daily Star reported on April 5th that the U of A law school is reducing tuition by 11% for in-state and 8% for non-resident students, in response to a 36% decrease in law school applicants since 2005.

This drops the cost to $27,288 for in-state and $42, 298 for out-of- state students. Such a deal!

The article states that one factor in decreasing enrollment is reduced job opportunities for lawyers in a slow economy. It also states that several law schools have been sued by their graduates


, on the grounds that the schools did not disclose how hard it would be to find work after graduation.

How’s that for gratitude?

But there’s a bright side to this. After all, if you’re an unemployed doctor of of jurisprudence, with school debts of 75 to 130k to pay off, what better thing to do that put yourself to work suing your alma mater?

Now that’s entrepreneurship!

Happy April 15th,


Sources; santafetradingpost.com, Arixona Daily Star 4/5/13

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