Here’s something you don’t see every day: an acknowledgment by a credible source usually not associated with the “liberal media” (Rupert Murdoch’s the WSJ) reporting that repeal of the estate tax is not a free ride, there are consequences: taxes will be shifted from a wealthier segment of the U.S. population to a less wealthy segment of the U.S. population. As reported by the WSJ in Why No Estate Tax Could Be a Killer:

Congress shocked everyone by letting the estate tax lapse on Jan. 1.

Now, here is the real stunner: For many, the lapse actually will raise taxes.

Under last year’s law, estates up to $3.5 million, or $7 million for married couples, were exempt from federal tax. This year that law has been replaced by a fiendishly complex levy raising taxes on the assets of those with little as $1.3 million. It will affect the heirs of at least 50,000 U.S. taxpayers who die this year, whereas the old law affected only about 15,000 estates a year, according to the Tax Policy Center.

The new system is far worse for many people who have assets between $1.3 million and $3.5 million,” says veteran estate lawyer Ronald Aucutt, of McGuire Woods.

The linked-to article does a good job of walking readers through a simple hypothetical demonstrating how differently this year’s and last year’s regimes treat the same asset held by two fictional widows: Ms. Bentley has total assets of $20 million, while Ms. Subaru’s total is $2 million. Guess who is paying more taxes this year?