An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Getting Filthy Rich: It all starts with your bike and a dodgy tax return!


Speaking of money, charity, and bikes, we happened to be glancing at the new issue of Forbes, the annual Forbes 400 number -- so, yeah, sitting there in the waiting room before getting our teeth cleaned, roughly an analogous experience -- and it mentioned that America's second most insanely rich man, Warren Buffett, made another $6 billion last year, but he gave away $2 billion. By way of colorful anecdote giving some insight into the character of the man, the article made the following legendary and often-repeated claim:

[Warren Buffett] filed first tax return at age 13, claiming $35 deduction for bicycle.


That must have been a very interesting tax return indeed. Assuming the boy had a decent enough income to actually file a return, he probably wrote the bike off as a business expense for his newspaper route -- or maybe he was really savvy and he depreciated it. (We've depreciated many bikes in our time, but the IRS ain't interested in our sort of depreciation.)

To our knowledge, it's not possible to take a deduction for a bike, even if it's part of your work. Bike commuters can't even write off their food, the way automobile drivers can write off gas-- though one Canadian got away with it a few years ago.

3 comments:

Pinchie said...

Now if I could write off the gas I get from food, I'd be shitting in tall clover!

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