The big story of the week thus far is the New York Times report which finally made Donald Trump’s income tax returns public after the president has spent years bucking convention by not disclosing them. And one of the items from that report that many people have honed in on is Trump’s $70,000 write-off for personal hair-styling expenses while he was on “The Apprentice,” which “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert” lampooned to begin Monday’s episode.
“The Late Show” begins each episode with a little skit of sorts from Colbert and his staff — often taking the form of a fake commercial. This skit was one of those, a fake ad for a barber shop that will help you cheat on your taxes with bogus deductions.
You can watch the bit below, or on Twitter.
— A Late Show (@colbertlateshow) September 29, 2020
The fake ad is for a barber shop called Shady Cuts, and it was narrated by Colbert staff writer Brian Stack. It’s a barber shop to help you commit tax fraud! This is how the narration for the fake commercial went, in case you’re unable to watch it for yourself:
“Are you tired of getting haircuts that don’t line your pockets with tens of thousands of dollars? Then come on in to Shady Cuts, where we’ll lower your ears, and your federal taxes! Come in today for one or our specials: the Fraud Fade, the Em-buzz-ler, the Deducti-bowl cut, the I ‘Dread’ Paying What I Owe, and the Mullet-Me-Pay-Less — business in the front, bankrupt in the back. So come on in to Shady Cuts today. We cut it right off so you can claim a write-off. Warning: there are limits to what we can hide.”
As Stack read that last sentence, we see a video of the wind exposing Trump’s comb-over as he tried to walk up the steps to Air Force One.
For those not familiar with tax write-offs and personal business expenses, the idea is that you’re spending money that you have to spend in order to do your job, and thus lowering your taxable income. So when I worked as a freelance writer, I could write off, say, a new computer as a business expense because I need a computer for work. So if I paid $1,000 for the computer, then I would claim it as a business expense and my taxable income would decrease by $1,000.