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An Even More Confusing Presentation of the Two-Income Trap and Taxes:

In my first post on the "two-income trap" and in my Wall Street Journal column, I took note of the peculiar way in which the authors presented their data, which led them to overlook the crucial role of the rise in tax liabilities between the two periods and the impact that has on the average family's household finances. When the Warren & Tyagi compare the average family of the 1970s to the 2000s, they present the data on all expenses (mortgage, cars, health insurance) in terms of the change in the actual dollar expenditures between the two periods. The rise in the tax burden, however, is incongruously presented in terms of the percentage of household income dedicated to paying all taxes (federal, state, and local). Thus, the authors state that the percentage of household income paid in taxes increases from "24 percent" of household income to "33 percent" of household income.

As I noted, the difficulty with presenting the data in this manner is that it obscures the underlying dynamic of what is happening in the example. Adding the second worker increases household income by 75 percent--this is actually a greater increase than the expenditures on mortgage, automobiles, and health insurance, all of which increase by less than the income growth of 75 percent. The problem is that total tax obligations over this period increase from about $9000 to about $22,000--an increase of about 140 percent. Thus, assuming that the authors' argument is theoretically sound (a proposition open to question) it seems clear that the increase in tax obligations is the driving dynamic in their example.

Nonetheless, the authors apparently even confused themselves, as they completely ignore this massive growth in the tax burden on the household budget, even though use the actual dollar values in calculating the "fixed costs" portion of the average family budget. Apparently this idiosyncratic presentation style confused most readers as well, as even though the book was reviewed and featured in a large number of mainstream media outlets, it appears that none of those commentators observed the growth in the tax burden either. A list of reviews of the book, with links, is available here.

Fortunately, the authors presented all of the raw figures necessary to convert the percentages to actual dollar values, which made it possible to figure out that the importance of the growth in the tax burden.

Now I see that in May 2007, Professor Warren provided testimony before the United States Senate Finance Committee on the same topic. At the hearing, Professor Warren presents all of the data in the book in a different format--but the end result is that she actually presents the data on taxes in an even more confusing and idiosyncratic style than in the book, making it even more difficult to understand the underlying dynamic.

In her Senate testimony, Professor Warren no longer actually presents the actual dollar values for the changes in expenditures between the two periods. Instead, she presents the data for everything but taxes in terms of the percentage change in the amount expended by the household on various categories of the household budget. So, for instance, she reports that the average family now spends "32% less" on clothing, "18% less" on food, "52% less" on appliances, etc., than the family of a generation ago. They also spend "76% more" on mortgage payments, "74% more on health care" and "52% more" on automobiles than in the past (the data here is apparently updated from the presentation in the book). She also notes that families are spending more on electronics, such as DVD players, televisions, and computers. As before, she then recalibrates all of these percentages into a figure for "fixed costs" and "discretionary expenditures" that actually uses the actual dollar values, rather than these percentages. Moreover, she never indicates what percentage of the household budget each of these categories comprise, so it is difficult to figure out what impact these percentage changes in isolation have on the overall household budget.

But here's where it gets confusing. For each of these other expenditures, she present the percentage change in the actual amount of money the household actually pays for each of these obligations. If a similar measure were used for taxes, as noted above, it would indicate a massive increase of about 140% in tax obligations over the relevant period, which would make clear that this increase dwarfs the increase in every other expenditure.

But for the presentation in the change in taxes alone--Professor Warren presents the change in the "average tax rate"--the percentage change in the percentage of household income dedicated to paying taxes. So, under this approach, because tax obligations increase from 24% of household income to 33% of household income--and increase of 9 percentage points--she reports the change in "the average tax rate" between the two periods as being 25%. But had she applied the same methodology to taxes as she does to every other expenditures--i.e., the growth in actual household expenditures on various categories of goods and services, rather than the percentage change in the percentage of the household budget dedicated to a particular category of expenditures--the "apples to apples" comparison in the have been about 140%, not 25%.

If she applied to the other categories of expenditures the same methodology she applied to taxes (the percentage change in the percentage of the budget dedicated to those expenditures), then each would have actually declined or stayed approximately the same as a percentage of household income than previously, so they would be either zero or negative, while taxes would have increased by 25%. Instead, she presents a true apples to oranges comparison with absolutely no resemblance to one other for purposes of comparison.

In fact, this confusion leads to a misreporting of the data in Figure 3 of her testimony, which is labeled "Median Family Spending by Category, Percent Change, 1972-2005." She does in fact reporting the percent change in "family spending" for each of the other categories, she does not do so for taxes. But what is reported for taxes quite plainly is not the percent change in spending on taxes--it is the percent change in the percentage of the household budget dedicated to paying taxes, a completely different and unrelated number.

I don't know why all of this is presented in the way it is, but it doesn't make any sense to me. Presumably Professor Warren understands that the data she reports for taxes is not based on the same methodology as for all expenditures. And I assume that she is aware that the change in the "median family spending" on the category of taxes is actually about 140%, not 25%, such that the number reported in her Figure 3 is incorrect. More fundamentally, I don't understand why it is thought useful to put any expenditure in terms of the percentage change in the percentage of the household budget dedicated to a given category expenditure. And if that is useful, why would it be useful only for reporting taxes but not for any other category of expenditures?

Perhaps there is some logical reason why it makes sense to present the data in this peculiar and heterogeneous fashion. But if so, it is not obvious to me. As a result, it makes even more difficult to understand what is going on than even the original presentation, which already seemed to have been confusing to most readers (and perhaps even the authors themselves). I just don't understand why this one obligation--taxes--is consistently presented in a unique fashion that invariably makes it more difficult to understand what is going on with that expenditure from the household budget and thus to understand how the change in the tax burden compares to the changes in the burdens of other expenditures. And in fact, it seems likely that the average Senate Finance Committee member or staffer would be likely to look at this presentation and be misled into concluding that the increase in the tax burden is a relatively small part of the overall change in the household financial burden, when in fact it is the largest change.

Furthermore, unlike the previous presentation of the data, where one could at least replicate what was going based on the information provided (however obscurely), in this iteration the actual dollar values expended on various budget items are never presented, nor are the percentages of the household budget dedicated to certain expenditure categories (which would allow one to back out those values from the total income figures which are presented). In fact, from what I can tell, Professor Warren never even presents in her testimony the 24% and 33% figures for the percentage of the family budget dedicated to taxes, which I had to infer from her book that was where her new 25% figure of the percentage change in the percentage of income dedicated to tax payments is coming from. As a result, it is unclear in her testimony exactly how much the tax obligations rise, but the underlying expenditures on taxes seem to be basically the same as the original data on this score.

By suggesting that the increase in household expenditures on taxes is only 25%, rather than its actual increase in value of about 140%--Professor Warren's testimony unfortunately leaves the Senate with the impression that the growth in tax obligations is much smaller than the growth in categories such as mortgage and health care expenses, when in fact the growth in taxes is much, much larger and more important. Whatever the rationale for reporting the data in this fashion it appears to have once again confused the logical policy recommendations that follow. Professor Warren recommends five types of policy responses to her version of the "two-income trap," that range from the affordability of health care and college education, to improvements in education and public schools, and a novel proposal for government "safety regulation for credit products." All of these may or may not be sensible ideas, but they seem like they'd have a relatively minor impact on this particular problem when compared to the elephant in the room--taxes. This is especially so given that government at all levels could do something about the tax burden much more easily, with greater direct impact, and with fewer unintended consequences than trying to address these more difficult social problems.

Because Professor Warren either does not recognize or for some reason simply chose not to report the massive contribution of increased taxes to the overall household budget crunch, none of her policy recommendations address the dramatically increased tax burden, which as we have seen, is the underlying factor driving the whole two-income (tax) trap. Moreover, it goes without saying that if the average tax burden had increased at the same rate as income during this period (75% instead of 140%), then this would provide a huge amount of money for savings, for college, to pay for a home, or to pay for the other household expenses she enumerates. Or, at least, tax reform seems like it is worthwhile to at least consider in this context.

More generally, I still don't really understand why this data is presented in such a heterogeneous and confusing manner, especially when it consistently leads to confusion about what it actually demonstrates. Furthermore, this confusion results in policy recommendations that don't seem to follow from what the data actually show. It seems like it would be more effective to just pick a uniform presentation format and use that for all of the numbers, thereby permitting a more transparent comparison among them.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. Robert Frank Falls For the Two-Income Trap:
  2. An Even More Confusing Presentation of the Two-Income Trap and Taxes:
  3. The Two-Income Tax Trap:
  4. Evaluating The Two-Income Trap Hypothesis:
Ted Frank (www):
An uncharitable observer would suggest a more obvious reason for the shift in metrics and lack of transparency. Indeed, the Occam's Razor explanation for the presentation suggests that Zywicki is remarkably generous to Warren in this post.
8.20.2007 11:17am
happylee:
It reminds me of a recent conversation with a European professional who works hours that would make a NYC associate blush. He noted how over 50% of his income goes to taxes. But, you see, it's okay because he gets "free" medical care, education and excellent public transportation. To some taxes are not and cannot be the problem; they can only be a solution.

As an aside, note how those items with the least gov't interference, relatively speaking, go down in cost, eg, food and clothing, while areas with massive gov't manipulation, eg, healtcare (60% socialized) and mortgages (a mix between gov't policies making land and home construction far more expensive coupled with gov't policies encouraging easy credit) go up in cost. The obvious conclusion will not be drawn by anyone of consequence. (Imagine, if you will, the gov't inteferes with clothing the way it does with healtcare...we'd all be wearing crappy overpriced clothes that doesn't fit right.)
8.20.2007 11:51am
flim flam:
Exactly what I was thinking, Ted.

Zywicki must have clenched his teeth and struggled mightily not to give in to the temptation to state the obvious--Warren is hiding the ball.
8.20.2007 11:52am
cathyf:
As a member of a dual-income 2-children family, I wonder if something more complicated is going on. Which is that the effect of the structure of the tax rate is to make it uneconomic for a low-wage second-earner parent to work (because of the cost of day care) while maintaining the substantial childcare subsidies built into the tax code for single parents. I've certainly had that conversation with young mothers over the years -- once you figure in the extra costs of working (which includes the high tax rate), a minimum wage job leaves a family with a couple of pre-schoolers with no more money than if mom stays home and takes care of the kids herself.

If you shift the tax burden away from the second-earner -- in other words put the marginal tax rate of the first and second earners closer together -- that means you shift it to the first earner in the family. For 2-earner families, this is a wash, but for single-earner families it means a tax increase. A tax increase which, at the margin, will force the families with one working and one stay at home parent to send the SAH parent back to work when they would prefer not to. I'm not sure that's a social policy that should be encouraged...
8.20.2007 11:52am
Marc :
perhaps the saddest part of this analysis is that few of the congressmen to which it was presented would be able or even inclined to spot the chicanery.
8.20.2007 12:06pm
DWAnderson:
One rationale for presenting the tax statistics as Warren has is that taxes are the only expense that is a function of income. If your income rises, you would expect your taxes to rise, but would not necessarily expect other categories of household expenses to rise. Thus, the 25% growth in tax rate cited is useful for showing how much of an effect bracket creep has had. This may not be the most useful measure of the affect of the tax burden, and may be underemphasized, but I think this is probably the rationale.
8.20.2007 12:18pm
Lonely Capitalist (mail):
More generally, I still don't really understand why this data is presented in such a heterogeneous and confusing manner, especially when it consistently leads to confusion about what it actually demonstrates.

Because the pro-tax, big government left doesn't want people to realize the truth.

This is the beauty of the Internet, and how it will bring down the left, by pointing out the truth whenever it lies and distorts reality.
8.20.2007 12:23pm
Joe Bingham (mail):
This false naivete is kind-hearted, but maybe not useful. I'm not sure everyone's (a) willing to wade through all that or (b) able to draw the conclusion that the study's authors deliberately present misleading information to avoid the obvious policy implications.
8.20.2007 1:31pm
guest:
I'd be more apt to share your outrage if you weren't engaging in distortion yourself. The 140% has two components: changes in tax rates over time and a jump -- I suspect a rather large jump -- in the tax bracket, whose effect has nothing to do with time. I guess it would be too taxing (ahem) for an expert in these matters, such as yourself, to present a truly clear analysis of the authors' argument...
8.20.2007 3:35pm
Archit (www):
Lonely Capitalist, Joe Bingham et al: care to comment on where the taxes are going? People derive value from a cleaner environment and a well-maintained public infrastructure. Increased education expenditures drive down the cost of skilled labor. The military makes the country safer. So, what are the obvious policy implications? what does the data demonstrate?
8.20.2007 3:59pm
Archit (www):
Prof. Zywicki thinks that (from the earlier post on The Two-Income Trap):
[I]t would seem to follow that one logical policy implication of this analysis would be to support a lower and flatter marginal tax rate. This would reduce the household tax burden and increase available discretionary income.


Making the tax more progressive is a more logical conclusion. Same government expenditures with a decreased burden on the median families who have less discretionary income than they did in the 70s. Unless we start identifying which government expenditures will be cut and the effects of those cuts on the population in question.
8.20.2007 4:10pm
Ken Arromdee:
The 140% has two components: changes in tax rates over time and a jump -- I suspect a rather large jump -- in the tax bracket, whose effect has nothing to do with time.

Bracket creep is an effect of time--inflation automatically pushing people into higher tax brackets even though they aren't really making any more money in terms of buying power.
8.20.2007 5:20pm
guest:
Bracket creep is an effect of time

True, so Prof. Zywicki would have the that additional burden of breaking out as well. Again, not too much to expect from an "expert". Also, in making the case for a flatter tax system, he'd have to analyze what would have happened to the 1970s family if taxes had been made more regressive and the wife had not gone to work. Again, clear, honest analysis, the lack of which he deplores, is missing.
8.20.2007 5:47pm
DeezRightWingNutz:
Brackets (and standard deductions and personal exemptions) have been adjusted annually for inflation for some time.
8.20.2007 5:49pm
lucia (mail) (www):
I don't understand why the numbers are presented in a table and only discussed in a narrative. Tables tend to make apples to oranges comparisons obvious.

You could make two four row tables.

Row 1 or table 1 has categories.
Row 2 shows $ spent in 1970
Row 3 shows $ spent now.
Row 4 shows % change.

Then make table two with row 2&3 now showing the expenditures as % of total family income. Row 4 shows the cahnge in the % expenditure.

Sned me the numbers and I'll help you with the html. :)
8.20.2007 6:06pm
michael (mail) (www):
Your article on the two income trap hypothesis explains how the American family is stretched. The review also shows that, because of inflation, where the money is going is obscured. I think the anxiety and insecurity in the face of having more possessions but also fewer options seems, and is, contradictory leading to a tendency to seek security in 'our group' with which we are more naturally empathetic. The Mexican laborer, about who one finds innumerable complaints as to their cost, is hypothesized as a cause though their effect on social costs is I don't think so clear. But, 'something has clearly happened,' and they are blamed.
8.20.2007 6:11pm
Tony Tutins (mail):
lucia, I think a couple of pie charts ("Then" and "Now") would be even better, because it forces you to define everything the same -- if you try to mix apples and oranges, it won't add up to 100% of the income. Another benefit is the viewer can eyeball the percent of income going to each expense. Label each wedge with the percentage of income and the actual dollar amount.
8.20.2007 6:25pm
Guest 17 (mail):
Todd your exaggerated professional pseudo-courtesy does a disservice to the truth. You know darned well why Warren is doing what she's doing, and you've already had your membership ticket into the club punched, so why don't you just say that the emperor has no clothes already? You can issue a "this is must my opinion" disclaimer if you like, but come on....
8.20.2007 7:12pm
Guest 17 (mail):
Or a "this is JUST my opinion" disclaimer, if you prefer...
8.20.2007 7:13pm
American Psikhushka (mail) (www):
guest-

I'd be more apt to share your outrage if you weren't engaging in distortion yourself. The 140% has two components: changes in tax rates over time and a jump -- I suspect a rather large jump -- in the tax bracket, whose effect has nothing to do with time. I guess it would be too taxing (ahem) for an expert in these matters, such as yourself, to present a truly clear analysis of the authors' argument...

You admitted that much of the changes in tax brackets over time were due to inflation. The effects of inflation are cumulative over time and inflation is really a hidden tax, so I don't know how this is supposed to help your argument. It tends to make the tax picture look even bleeker, since taxpayers are paying even more dollars when their buying power is actually decreasing.

Say you have two tax brackets:
20% for those making $25K-49K
30% for those making $50K+

Say there is total inflation of 50% ("modest" 5% per year) over a period of 10years so that everyone making $25K at the beginning of period is now making $50K at the end of period. Everyone in the group has crept up a bracket with no real change in buying power. But at the same time their taxes have increased by 50%, with the corresponding drop in buying power. Are we flubbing the analysis by stating they are getting ripped off?
8.20.2007 7:20pm
American Psikhushka (mail) (www):
Correction: Should be "bleaker" in the first paragraph above.
8.20.2007 7:23pm
kevincure (mail) (www):
Well...50% inflation on 25K means that 37500 is the equivalent real buying power. Also 50% inflation implies quite a bit lower than 5% annual inflation: at 4.05%, you'd move an inflation index from 100 to 100*e^(.0405*10)=150.

That said, I agree with you in that there's really no difference between bracket creep and an increase in tax rates across the board.
8.20.2007 8:51pm
Lev:

Bracket creep is an effect of time--inflation automatically pushing people into higher tax brackets even though they aren't really making any more money in terms of buying power.


Ronald Reagan - tax rate brackets indexed to inflation.

let me repeat that

RONALD REAGAN - TAX RATE BRACKETS INDEXED TO INFLATION

Additionally, as compared to the 1970's

Ronald Reagan - marginal tax rate percentages reduced.

let me repeat that

ADDITIONALLY, AS COMPARED TO THE 1970'S

RONALD REAGAN - MARGINAL TAX RATE PERCENTAGES REDUCED



Additionally, the article describing the authors' testimony before Congress has precious little about taxes being a burden at all, as opposed to health care emergencies, revolving credit card debt, McMansion debt, child daycare and more.

It does not support what Zywicki is trying to make of it regarding taxes.

The authors refer to this from the tax foundation. Maybe it will help Zywicki's attempted case, but I doubt it.

Time to close comments again.
8.21.2007 1:08am
American Psikhushka (mail) (www):
kevincure-

Yes, my off the cuff example does have some mistakes. Thanks for the correction.
8.21.2007 2:58am
American Psikhushka (mail) (www):
Lev-

Ronald Reagan - tax rate brackets indexed to inflation.

let me repeat that

RONALD REAGAN - TAX RATE BRACKETS INDEXED TO INFLATION


Sheesh, I'd hate to see what would happen when you're under some real adversity, and not just posting on a message board.

That said, with inflation indexing the government defines the inflation figure. Let's just put it charitably and say that the government has a tendency to be a little optimistic with the numbers they define and estimate in many cases. Why don't we go back to a backed currency, then we won't have to worry about inflation at all?

Time to close comments again.

Yes, sometimes an unsavory element drifts in. I only went to a state law school, but if you talk slowly and use small words sometimes I can follow what's going on.
8.21.2007 3:06am
Robert Lutton:
American Psikhushka:
"Say you have two tax brackets:
20% for those making $25K-49K
30% for those making $50K+

Say there is total inflation of 50% ("modest" 5% per year) over a period of 10years so that everyone making $25K at the beginning of period is now making $50K at the end of period. Everyone in the group has crept up a bracket with no real change in buying power. But at the same time their taxes have increased by 50%, with the corresponding drop in buying power. Are we flubbing the analysis by stating they are getting ripped off?"

You don't understand.

You should do your own taxes at least once so that you understand how the system works. In your example each person pays exactly the same percentage of taxes when they make 25k or 50k (20%). The way that brackets work is that you pay more on the part of the income in the next bracket.

In your example, if someone made 60k they would pay 20% on the first 50k and then 30% on the part that is over 50k or in total .2 x 50k=10k +.3 x 10k= 3k for a total of 13k
8.21.2007 12:08pm
Simon Oliver Lockwood (mail):
During the relatively high inflation of the 1970s tax rates were not indexed for inflation. (This was done in the 1981 tax cuts) This was the genesis of "bracket creep" that affected the middle class. In addition, the inflation affected housing values which likely increased property tax assessments.
8.21.2007 12:41pm
DeezRightWingNutz:

In addition, the inflation affected housing values which likely increased property tax assessments.


... and the dollars with which those taxes were paid.

While I don't like an income tax, period, why can't we:

1) get rid of all deductions, standard and itemized
2) up personal and dependancy exemptions substantially
3) have one tax rate

There -- no two income (tax) trap, no marraige penalty (although this still would allow for a potential marraige benefit).

I still prefer a consumption tax of some sort.
8.21.2007 1:17pm
Jam:
As a member of a dual-income 2-children family, I wonder if something more complicated is going on. Which is that the effect of the structure of the tax rate is to make it uneconomic for a low-wage second-earner parent to work (because of the cost of day care) while maintaining the substantial childcare subsidies built into the tax code for single parents.


The tax code is a means to effect social change. The solution to your problem described is above ... government run day care centers, pre-kindergardens and kindergardens. And the decreasing in size of households.

Those who control the training of the children controls the future.

'Those who have the youth on their side control the future.'
Nazi Teacher's League, Hans Schemm
8.21.2007 3:08pm
Taxman:
This whole debate is rather baseless for the simple reason that there is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY an average married couple with 2 kids is paying $22,400 in taxes.

FICA/Medicare would amount to about $5,200.

At the very most, Federal income tax would be $5,900 (67,800 - 10,300 standard deduction - 13,200 deduction for four exemptions = 44,300 taxable income, resulting in a table tax of $5,894). Note that this would be THOUSANDS less after itemizing deductions, child tax credits, and dependent care expense credits.

Assume the family lives in Wisconsin, which has higher-than-average state taxes. The most the family would pay in WI income tax would be $3,600 (67,800 - 5,226 standard deduction - 2,800 deduction for four exemptions = 59,774 taxable income, resulting in a table tax of $3,609). Again, note that this would be much less in real life due to various state deductions and credits.

Wisconsin has a 5% state sales tax. This would add $1,500 to the family's annual tax liability, with an aggressive assumption of $30,000 in state-taxable purchases.

Property taxes are also assessed in Wisconsin. This varies highly in each area, but $4,500 is a high estimate.

This amounts to a total of $20,700. I'm $1,700 short of Warren, Tyagi, and Zywicki's figures, all while using extremely unrealistic assumptions as applied to a high-tax state.

In the real world, this family is paying $13,000 to $17,000 per year in taxes, far short of what is being claimed by our thoughtful analysts.
8.21.2007 5:29pm
Aleks:
Re: Because the pro-tax, big government left doesn't want people to realize the truth.

Since taxes rates were cut, first by Reagan, then by Bush II, (and only nominally increased by Clinton) and even the infamous "marriage penealty" has supposedly been fixed, while the EITC has been implemented and continually increased, how is this claim of "140%" possible? Someone is playing sleigt-of-hand with numbers here, and I don't think it's Prof. Warren. I very much that income and payroll taxes have increased that much since the 70s; in fact income taxes have fallen at all but the higher income levels. So if there's any trith to this claim we will ahve to look at sales and property taxes instead, and in the latter especially we may find a culprit.

Re: Bracket creep is an effect of time--inflation automatically pushing people into higher tax brackets even though they aren't really making any more money in terms of buying power.

Bracket creep is no longer a feature of our income tax system; each year the bracket levels are rest per inflation. However bracket creep is a feature with regard to the AMT, whose trigger level is NOT reset by inflation.
8.21.2007 11:02pm
Lev:
American Psikhushka

On his previous two threads relating to this subject, Zywicki closed the comments after data were posted that were inconvenient to his position.
8.22.2007 12:32am
Jam:
http://www.house.gov/jec/fiscal/tx-grwth/taxpol/taxpol.htm

Some Underlying Principles of Tax Policy
by
Richard K. Vedder and Lowell E. Gallaway
Distinguished Professors of Economics,
Ohio University


High Administrative Costs

By all criteria mentioned above, there are significant problems. Looking at tax administration, the current tax code is enormously complex, with the basic tax code now exceeding thousands of pages, compared with 16 pages for the original income tax that took effect in 1913. Money magazine once asked 50 tax professionals to calculate the income tax liability for a hypothetical moderately prosperous family, and they came up with 50 different results!15 The high-end calculation of an $11,881 tax burden was about 65 percent higher than the low estimate of $7,202. Moreover, that hypothetical taxpayer would have had to pay anywhere from $201 to $2,000 for tax preparation. Not only does this demonstrate the complexity of the code, but it illustrates the substantial horizontal inequities that occur because alternative interpretations of tax law lead people of similar economic circumstance to pay widely differing amounts of tax.



Abolish the Income Tax and replace it with ... nothing.
8.22.2007 12:38pm
Zywicki (mail):
For some reason that I can figure out, Powerblogs seems to automatically close comments to my threads even when I don't tell it to. Some other people mentioned that Comments had been closed on one of the earlier threads and I can't figure out why it was saying that.
8.23.2007 7:59pm