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Okay, maybe that’s a little strong.  But stay with me here, this is not an April Fools joke, honest.

Tax Day is coming up.  I just filed my 2013 income tax return. And it got me thinking about taxes and federal and state budgets and stuff, and that I am privileged to live in this country, and that it costs money to be a great country, so here goes nothing.

The popular wisdom says that no one likes paying taxes.  In fact, it would seem that everyone (over at Fox anyway) thinks that the gummint is stealing us all blind.  We would all be better off (so they say) if the gummint took its hands out of our pants and gave us back all that hard-earned money.  Just stopped taking, taking, taking, and started giving it all back.  Wouldn’t we all be better off?

Well, actually we wouldn’t.  

So, let’s start with what taxes we actually paid

I am going to use 2010 as an example, since those numbers are pretty easy to find – and I will assume I was an average family of 4 people living in a blue state (California), which I actually was.  It’s easy to break out similar numbers for other states or family situations.  If you want to see the numbers in more detail, all federal numbers come from this document and the state numbers come from here.

In 2010, the federal budget was $3.46 trillion.  According to Wikipedia, there were 308,745,538 people in the US in 2010, so that means the federal budget represented $11,500 for every man, woman, and child in the US.  That’s how much it cost to keep the country running for one year, and someone had to pay for it, and we did, for the most part.  OK, we borrowed some of it (the deficit part, more in a sec), but we did pay a big chunk of it.  

And that’s just the federal government.  In California, our state budget was $120 billion in 2010.  There were 37,253,956 Californians in 2010, so the state spent $3220 for every person in the state.  That’s what it cost to support the state government in 2010.  And again, we paid most of it.

My average household had 4 members in 2010.  So putting these numbers together, it would seem that the typical family of 4 in California personally ponied up $58,900 to support the federal and state governments.  Sounds pretty outrageous, doesn’t it?  Are you stomping your feet yet, complaining about how expensive our damn gummint is?  

Well, I actually don’t remember writing a check to the government for $58,900 in 2010, I’m pretty sure I would have noticed, so let’s take a closer at how those funds break out.

The federal government took in $899B in personal income tax receipts in 2010 or $2900 per person.  The state of California took in $49.6B, which boils down to $1330 per person.  So a typical family of four paid $17,000 in federal and CA income tax (if you lived somewhere else, your rate was different, probably smaller, but the numbers are pretty easy to check).

A lot of the federal and state revenues are from corporate income taxes.  The 2010 federal budget shows income from corporate taxes of $191B, or $620 per capita.  In CA, the state took in $8.8B or $235 per capita from corporate taxes.  Of course, as Americans and Californians, we paid those taxes as well.  Contrary to what Mitt Romney tried to convince us, those corporate taxes came from corporate profits, which came about because those corporations were successful in selling their products to their customers, the American consumers – us.  So yeah, we paid those taxes too, buried in the prices we paid for our purchases throughout the year.

The feds also collected $812B in Social Security and Medicare taxes in 2010, or about $2630 per person.  In addition, CA took in $32.1B in sales tax, or $860 per person.  And there were lots of other smaller fees and taxes (estate taxes, taxes on gasoline, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.) that contributed to the totals.

So, why did we need to borrow all that money?

OK, so the federal and state governments didn’t actually raise as much money as they spent.  The federal deficit was $1.3 trillion that year, or $4200 per person.  And the CA deficit was about $6.3B, representing $170 per person.  So as is the wont of politicians everywhere, they spent more than they were willing to raise by taxing their constituents, reducing the amount we actually paid by $17,500 for my average family of four, bringing our family’s total tax payment (federal and state) to $41,400.  

So that's $41,400 in state and federal taxes for a typical California family in 2010.  If you paid more than that amount, congratulations, you were very well compensated in 2010, your mother must be proud.  If you paid less, congratulations again – all the benefits of life in these United States were subsidized for you by the rest of us.

So, what did we get in return?

So what did I get in return for paying all this tax money, and why am I so happy to have provided it?  Well, I am very proud to say that my taxes went to support all the following.

I helped pay for construction and maintenance of the infrastructure (roads, bridges, airports, train stations) that provided the means of transportation for 100 percent of the nation’s products and people.  Yes, I am proud to provide that support, even though much of that infrastructure is now aging and damaged, so clearly more is needed.

I helped pay for the public school teachers who provided my kids with an outstanding education and helped them get into very good colleges, for which I will always be grateful.  And yes, I recognize that my kids had opportunities that many public schools can't offer, so I understand that more, not less, needs to be done.

I helped pay for the fire fighters who controlled the brush fires that threatened homes in California, and who worked daily to keep people safe in every town in America.

I paid for the police officers and courts who maintained a lawful and orderly society for the rest of us.  And yes, I am grateful, even though I was once or twice on the receiving end of their blind administration of that justice.

I helped pay for the National Park service and for maintaining the spectacular wilderness areas that I love to hike and camp in.

I helped send Social Security checks to millions of elderly and disabled Americans, and I helped pay their medical bills and prescription costs as well, as I fully expect the next generation will do for me should I need a little help someday.

I helped pay the men and women who made up our armed services, and who so honorably carried out their mission to protect and serve the rest of us.  Yes, I am proud to have provided that support, and will gladly work to pay for their support after they leave the service, even though I may not agree with the politicians who so frequently sent them on such horribly misguided missions.

I paid to build and launch the very costly GPS satellites that fly over us every day and make a real contribution to our ability to navigate this planet safely and comfortably.

I paid to support all the 503(c) organizations like the Metropolitan Opera, LA County Museum of Art, NEA, NPR, and Planned Parenthood, either through direct grants, or by paying more in taxes so that they didn’t have to.

I am especially proud that I helped pay to support the unemployed factory workers, the chronically ill and disabled Americans, the wounded veterans, and the many other people fallen on hard times, who might not otherwise have been able to put food on their tables for their families.

Not to mention the libraries, parks, airport security, marriage and death certificates, passport services, foreign service employees, university research programs, and all the sundry other services that our federal and state governments routinely provided that made America and the world a safer, more comfortable, and yeah, a better place.

Of course I also helped pay to service the debt that was incurred by my and my parents’ generations, and is likely to need servicing long into the foreseeable future.  I take pride as well as a personal responsibility for helping to pay down that debt.

And yes, I helped pay for the new health care law that now provides subsidized health insurance to people who cannot otherwise afford it (well maybe I didn’t in 2010, but I am proud to be providing it now). [Note: I have just learned that the ACA subsidies were funded by a special tax on those citizens with AGI over $250,000, so I guess I didn't help fund those subsidies, but I would have been proud if I had - and if YOU did, congratulations, your mother must be REALLY proud.]

A Republican friend once challenged my patriotism based on my political views, which is silly on its face but consistent in the Republican mind.  I told him that not only do I consider the USA to be the greatest country in the world, but unlike him, I am willing to pay what it costs to keep it that way.

Does that mean that I think tax money has never been wasted, or that costly mistakes have never been made?  Of course not - if I ran the country, a lot of our tax money would be spent differently, but then there would be people who would legitimately disagree with my choices (even though they would be wrong).  I totally agree that there is not enough accountability to justify all our government spending, and that programs that waste our money should be cut.  But I certainly disagree with the Republicans about which programs those are and what criteria we should use to decide.

Seriously, if it weren’t for the taxes we pay, and the government services we receive in return, there would be nothing worthwhile in this country to spend the rest of our income on.  I am always surprised when people don't get that.  So even if you don’t like paying taxes, maybe you should lighten up, take a deep breath, and be proud, I mean really proud, of the invaluable contribution you’ve just made to the American way of life.

Sat Apr 05, 2014 at 11:02 AM PT: Update:  A lot of commenters have been focused on the abuse and misuse of our tax dollars for the many documentable excursions into actions that are not in the best interests of our citizens, whether influenced by money or stupidity or hubris or whatever.  I have been letting the comments slide, but now I want to take a minute to clarify my diary.  

Of course, I agree, our tax dollars are not always spent wisely - yes I agree that our military is too big, that money influences politics unduly, that wars have been fought to protect corporate interests, that  our government has done a lot of reprehensible things, as so many of you have pointed out.  Our policies are only as good as the politicians we elect.  So my advice, again, is to suck it up, be thankful for the really outstanding accomplishments that our tax dollars do pay for, and fight like hell to get money out of politics, to put fairness back into the electoral process, and to find and elect the brightest and most progressive candidates that we can find.  Sure we lose a lot of those battles, but we occasionally win a few too.  I listed a few of the things that my tax dollars pay for that I am proud of - there are many more.  Tax Day is hard enough, let's stay focused on the positive.

Originally posted to liberaldad2 on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 09:28 PM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Actually, by April 15th, everyone has already paid (8+ / 0-)

      the majority, if not all,  of whatever taxes might be owed for the previous year. The date is just for the submission of forms, and a small percentage in a check to make up the difference if taxes are still owed. Or, one is filing for an extension to track down paperwork from various incomes before submitting all the forms. Payroll deduction was instituted the second year of the income tax, after the utter failure the first year of attempting to collect all income taxes owed all at once.

      Radarlady, being pedantic, just because she can be

    •  Yes, I do pay my taxes with a smile... (11+ / 0-)

      as I know that they are being used (in most cases) to help everybody in my community.  

      "Death is the winner in any war." - Nightwish/Imaginareum/Song of myself.

      by doingbusinessas on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 08:44:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Neither is mass surveillance. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      penelope pnortney

      That shit costs big bucks.

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

      When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

      by Words In Action on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 09:28:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Tell you what, Pilgrim (0+ / 0-)

        My tax dollars will pay for propping up the National Security State, death droning Pakistani wedding parties, and torturing mental patients.

        Your tax dollars will pay for lollipops and kitties for all the good little boys and girls.

        Would that make you happy?

        o caminho d'ouro, uma pinga de mel: Parati

        by tarkangi on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 10:10:36 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  unicorns and ponies (0+ / 0-)

          u forgot the unicorns and ponies, your old straw man standbys.

          And I'm not surprised you're so cavalier about supporting surveillance, war crime drone usage or torture. All the rage among Third Way "democrats"

          Trust, but verify. - Reagan
          Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

          When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

          by Words In Action on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 10:36:39 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I club baby harp seals for relaxation (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            It relieves the frustrations that build up in a long day at the factory, firing union workers and replacing them with widows and orphans.

            At night I have my lackeys boil illegal immigrants alive, and I drift off into neverland to their sweet, sweet cries of agony.

            o caminho d'ouro, uma pinga de mel: Parati

            by tarkangi on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 10:59:53 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm sure you do. (0+ / 0-)

              No doubt you think you earned it.

              Trust, but verify. - Reagan
              Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

              When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

              by Words In Action on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 11:25:05 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Indubitably (4+ / 0-)

                I earned every penny that I have and most of the pennies that you have.  Nobody ever gave me a hand out or a hand up: I built the car that I drive on the asphalt I lay down every summer from the house that I built with my own hands to the town that I put up in anticipation of the railroad.  Anyone too weak and stupid to make it on his own, he deserves everything he doesn't get.

                o caminho d'ouro, uma pinga de mel: Parati

                by tarkangi on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 01:16:49 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

    •  Top Comment (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tarkangi, janmtairy

      You'll see it in tonights Top Comments diary.

      There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

      by Puddytat on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 02:39:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I do taxes for a few family & friends (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tarkangi, silverfoxcruiser

      In late 2009, 2 or 3 of my "peeps" received notices from the IRS, for things they should have paid taxes on but didn't know or didn't receive the 1099.  The tax years were for 2007 mostly.  They contacted me and did the patented "how come??"  

      All of them owed the taxes but either didn't receive the info or didn't understand and give me the info.  

      I had to break the news to them that they owed taxes and interest and penalties.   This is a hard job for a tax preparer.

      Here is how i did it (all my clients are way left of center):

      Sorry, but you do owe these taxes.  But aren't you glad you are paying these taxes now (and interest and penalty) to the Obama administration and not the Bush administration when they were first due?

      All of them said that made them okay with paying the extra tax.  It's all about the presentation.

      "The next time I tell you someone from Texas should not be president of the United States, please, pay attention." Molly Ivins

      by janmtairy on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 07:19:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  liberaldad - good diary (6+ / 0-)

    Do you know what the mean and/or median family income in CA was in 2010? If so, it would be good to add to the diary.

    "let's talk about that"

    by VClib on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 10:02:39 PM PDT

    •  US Census reports median household (7+ / 0-)

      income in CA for 2008-2012 at $61400. US at $53046.

      "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

      by tardis10 on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 10:30:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Unfortunately, the median household income (10+ / 0-)

        can't be compared against my methodology.  My $41,400 tax base was determined by dividing the total fed & state taxes by the total population, then multiplying by 4.  To compare against income, I would need to determine the total income earned by all Californians, then divide by the population and multiply by four.  Total income would have to include capital gains and interest income, as well as other tax sheltered income to be fair.  Since I included Social Security taxes, I would also need to include Social Security income in the total to make a fair comparison.  Much harder to find those data, but I will try.  This method will also yield a much larger number than the median household income.

        The point I was making is that taxes represent a payment against the cost of being an American and a Californian, and that those of us who value our culture should be willing to pay for it, and that those who don't want to pay for it, can't value it all that much.  Because our tax system is progressive (mostly), those who are least able to afford to pay get a break, while those who can afford it, pay more, and should feel good about themselves for it.

        'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own. - Alexander Pope

        by liberaldad2 on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 10:58:16 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  If the data showed that the total tax burden (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tardis10, radarlady, tarkangi, ZenTrainer

          for a family of four in CA is more than the median family income you have to wonder what the historical trend lines of those two metrics looks like (and I don't have a clue) and depending on the trend lines how long that is sustainable?

          I know a surprising number of high net worth, high income, Californians who are establishing tax residence in Nevada. For anyone sitting on a very large unrealized capital gain the economics of establishing a new tax residence before selling that appreciated capital asset is really compelling. Your very nice home in Nevada is free just on state tax savings.

          "let's talk about that"

          by VClib on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 11:34:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  If there is no substance in the (0+ / 0-)

            tax maneuver you report it could be set aside by the IRS as a sham. Then the user could be liable for the taxes and penalties both to the Feds sand the state.

            If enough do that Nevada might slap and high level income tax just on the top of the line incomes.

            I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

            by samddobermann on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 11:55:59 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  sam - it's perfectly legal (0+ / 0-)

              You actually have to live in Nevada for a majority of the time for 12 months. There is no federal tax issue, in fact the feds get more of your capital gain if you live in Nevada than if you live in California where the top capital gains tax rate is 13.3%, for which you receive a federal deduction.

              If you have an unrealized capital gain of more than $1 million, and don't need to live in CA full time, the economics are significant. At the $1 million level the tax savings won't buy you a big house but you save more than $50,000 for every million dollars of recognized long term capital gains.

              "let's talk about that"

              by VClib on Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 12:56:55 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  your comment made me think of these ads (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          the heinous thing from Cadillac

          and Ford's response

          "Taxes are what we pay for civilized society, including the chance to insure" - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Compania General De Tabacos De Filipinas v. Collector of Internal Revenue, 275 U.S. 87, 100, dissenting; opinion

          by HugoDog on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 11:25:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  What do we pay for? We pay for the (3+ / 0-)

    War on Terror (Brown People) &
    War on Drugs (Minorities) &
    War on Civil Rights (all of us) &
    War on Public Schools (Minorities) &
    QE to Banks &
    Required payments to Insurance Companies &
    Some social programs.

    I think my taxes are used to make the world a worse place. This is one reason I permanently left the USA for a more benign government.

    I voted with my feet. Good Bye and Good Luck America!!

    by shann on Wed Apr 02, 2014 at 11:33:04 PM PDT

    •  More than half of discretionary spending.... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Words In Action

      goes to bombs, etc. And that doesn't even count Homeland Security (bombs for us here at home) and the VA.

      And who knows what the NSA, CIA, DIA and the FUCKYOU (super secret) cost?

      Paying all those nice folks and buying all those bombs really warms the cockles of my heart.

      •  Indeed (0+ / 0-)

        Because we are the police of the world. When bad things happen, who gets called?  The real world has a way of bursting peoples little balloon animals.

        You best believe it does

        by HangsLeft on Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 03:45:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, right (0+ / 0-)

          Like the slaughter we stopped in Syria or the way we stood up to the Russians when they took Crimea or the way we took down the heinous North Korean regime that tortures its people in unspeakable ways or...

          We're not the world's police.  In case you haven't noticed, we only bomb countries that don't have air defense, and half the time, we do it just to steal their oil, not because they represent any kind of threat.

          But you just keep that fantasy of the U.S. as the big, tough, white cowboy hat-wearing kindly police officer of the world if it makes you feel better.

          They tell me I'm pretty amusing from time to time working with 140 characters or less.

          by CharlieHipHop on Sun Apr 06, 2014 at 09:07:12 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Well some see the tax form as half empty... (5+ / 0-)

      Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature. If I had Bill Gates money, I'd buy Detroit.

      by ZenTrainer on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 10:23:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I have less issue with paying taxes, (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Elizaveta, ZenTrainer, Terry S

    and more of an issue of filling out those insufferable forms and dealing with legalese.

    Legalese is complete and utter nonsense. Seriously. Whenever I see it, I just become super angry at how nonsensical it is. Words don't mean what they mean in the dictionary when it comes to legalese.

    Oh, and for those of us who live in California, we have to arbitrarily fill out some boxes for no reason with numbers that have no basis in logic.

    Just tell me how much I owe, don't make me figure it out myself.

    And that's why I end up giving H&R Block hundreds of dollars. Because it is infuriating.

    But the actual paying, that I get. And I don't have an issue with. I wouldn't mind paying MORE if we got some Medicare-for-all going on.

    Note: Anyone who says they can read or understand legalese is lying, since it is nonsense. They are just faking it. This probably includes lawyers and law-writers.

    Note 2: I'm only like 15% joking/engaging in hyperbole.

  •  Just love paying for the military to support (3+ / 0-)

    USA imperialism.

  •  It's not the amount of taxes that bothers me. (3+ / 0-)

    I would be fine with paying the amount that I pay, except for two things:

    First, the process of filling out the forms is unpleasant, time-consuming, and stressful.  (It seems to me that for most people, the government could take in electronic versions of the W2s and 1099s and so on and then send out a bill.  People would only need to fill out a form if they had other income or expenses.)

    Second, there is the issue of fairness.  If the system is fair and my fair share is more than I pay now, that's fine; I'd even be willing to pay a bit more.  Unfortunately, the system does not appear to be fair.  (For that reason, I think that tax reform and simplification should be a top priority for Democrats.)

    •  The system is not fair but if you're not looking (0+ / 0-)

      at the forms, I wonder how you would know. (Not you, you know, You.)

      I don't get why it takes people a long time to do their taxes. I'm self-employed and it takes me about an hour and a half. (Well, to be truthful it takes me about a year and an hour and a half. I just did my 2012 taxes. I am quite the procrastinator. But once I start it doesn't take me long.)

      I have a friend who is not self employed, works a regular job with taxes taken out and it took her a whole day just to get her taxes ready for H&R Block.

      I told her I thought she was doing something wrong.

      As for fair, when I do my self employment tax I hit a line that asks me to

      multiply the amount of line 4 by 13.3% if it's below $110,000. If it's above that I am to multiply it by 2.9% and add $11,450 to the result.
      I can't help but think that's backwards. I think under $110,000 and you should only have to pay 2.9%. Over that and you pay $13.3% and add $11,450.

      But you're not even going to think about that if you're not doing your own taxes and reading each line.

      Tracy B Ann - technically that is my signature. If I had Bill Gates money, I'd buy Detroit.

      by ZenTrainer on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 10:36:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The 2.9% is the Medicare tax (0+ / 0-)

        that is on all your income but it is included in the 13.3% that you pay with FICA on the part up to $110,000.

        So they ave figured FICA and Medicare up to 110k as the $11,450 and you just figure the add on part.

        I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

        by samddobermann on Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 06:09:30 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I don't mind taxes. they pay for civilization /nt (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tarkangi, LookingUp, geez53, JBL55, Tonedevil

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 05:38:41 AM PDT

    •  Of course, (0+ / 0-)

      they also pay for ripping civilization apart. With TPP, if it comes, it'll be much easier.

      Trust, but verify. - Reagan
      Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

      When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

      by Words In Action on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 09:19:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Tipped, recced AND hotlisted. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tarkangi, VPofKarma, ZenTrainer, JBL55, akmk

    Damn, I was just thinking something similar this morning.  

    This is great!

    Strength and dignity are her clothing, she rejoices at the days to come; She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the law of kindness is on her tongue.

    by loggersbrat on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 08:33:54 AM PDT

  •  We need to simplify tax forms, increase the (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GreenMother, tarkangi, samddobermann

    number of tax brackets and the level of income needed to hit them. For instance the top rate in Eisenhower's time was 91% but you had to make at least 1 million to hit it. Today the top rate is 39.6% but you hit it at roughly 400k. Perversely, the higher the income, the more likely, you use writeoffs deductions and variously other loopholes to wipe out your owed taxes. an ability that self-employed people or people who don't make a million bucks don't have. there need to be a millionaires rate and a billionaires rate, since  the richest folks in this country seems to be steadily increasing their wealth far past their ability to spend it in 5 lifetimes. simply put, any source of income whether its wages, stocks,  bonds or inheritance, is treated the same way. if your estate is 10 million or more you pay 77% as was in the case in the 70s.

    •  Its like someone decided to treat the government (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      like a giant discount store. The more you spend, the more you save?

      But it's not doing this country any favors, especially on a higher income level or a corporate one.

      "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

      by GreenMother on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 08:55:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Precisely. Corporations accounted for 7% of (5+ / 0-)

        taxes in the 50s, now they count for about 1%. the corporate tax rate used to be 50%, now its 35% and effectively about 13. we are one of the few countries who tax income made regardless if the company is in the country. this way the government recives income from foreign corporations in a way that countries that have a "terrestrial' tax code don't- ie they don't tax offshore accounts. If the Us switched to a terrestrial taxbase, a lot of money would move overseas , because we could no longer touch that money.

  •  Taxes are investments in our government (5+ / 0-)

    You've said that in other words, and I completely agree.

    If Republicans really believed that we have the greatest nation in the world, they would be willing to invest in it.  By claiming that they don't want to pay taxes, they are saying that they don't value the United States of America.  It's really that simple, and they should be held accountable for what they really think.

    There are nations where no one pays taxes.  Mostly they are funded by oil revenue.  Not one of these nations is a good place to live for the average person.  In these countries only the wealthiest people have any say at all.  Interestingly, this is what Republican policies would lead us to, and they've already made serious headway in this direction.

    I'm happy that I've invested in my country and in state and local governments.  I only wish that the wealthy would pay their fair share.  They get much more out of this investment than the rest of us do, and they should pay accordingly.

    "Trust only those who doubt" Lu Xun

    by LookingUp on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 09:08:08 AM PDT

    •  Actually, fed gov spending is the investment, in (0+ / 0-)

      out economy.

      The fed gov is self funding, cuz it creates out dollars  out of thin air, and taxes remove dollars from circulation.

      States and local gov do, however, need to earn dollars, just like you and businesses.

      The US fed gov, however, doesn't need to earn dollars, it's the source of all dollars.

  •  I used to say the same thing (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    quite glibly, even (especially?) when I was paying six figures in taxes.

    Since 9/11, Climate Change and outrageous levels of concentration of wealth, not so much.

    Since the Republicans and Third Way Democrats linked arms to support trickle-down economics, de-regulation, corporate welfare, the military industrial complex, the dismantling of the bill of rights and widespread disregard for environmental crises, the government has become a big part of our problems.

    This is not to say that I don't think the government does any good or can be much more helpful, therefore ought to be pursued as a means to good ends. It's saying that at the moment it is doing a fucktonne of horrible things are harming lots of people and all life on this planet, and I'm a whole less less sanguine about supporting it than I once was.

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

    When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

    by Words In Action on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 09:27:37 AM PDT

  •  This is misleading: (0+ / 0-)
    Of course, as Americans and Californians, we paid those taxes as well.  Contrary to what Mitt Romney tried to convince us, those corporate taxes came from corporate profits, which came about because those corporations were successful in selling their products to their customers, the American consumers – us. So yeah, we paid those taxes too, buried in the prices we paid for our purchases throughout the year.
    This is like saying (assuming that nobody is self employed) that your employer is paying 100% of the taxes because your income is coming from them.
  •  I'm proud to pay my taxes - (5+ / 0-)

    happy will come when and if the bulk of those tax dollars stop going to war profiteers and their "complex" and start going to rebuild and maintain our infrastructure, education, and science.

  •  I don't like paying taxes, but I see the need (5+ / 0-)

    And I appreciate the many good things that my tax dollars go towards which benefit everyone, including myself.

    I don't like brushing my teeth.  I do it because I recognize that it is necessary to avoid a much worse outcome.

    Only children or people who have not outgrown their childishness think that they can avoid responsibilities without major negative consequences.

  •  I thought I was the only weirdo who liked it! (6+ / 0-)

    Paying taxes makes me feel like a real American citizen, the same way voting does.

    And as a middle-aged woman, I still feel a personal pride in paying my own way through life, because I remember when that was rare for my gender.

    I'd still like a refund of the money I spent on Bush's lie-based Iraq war, but am nothing but proud that I can now help poor families afford medical insurance.

    Thank God, the Bob Fosse Kid is here! - Colin Mochrie

    by gardnerhill on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 12:12:18 PM PDT

  •  I don't mind paying taxes, or didn't, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    because until the recent wave of R mania, a lot of those taxes got spent on matters which would once have been solely private, but which Our Lord calls us to do, and which Christian, and a lot of other religious, folk, have done as part of their duty, or are at least called to do so.  These calls have been part of faiths since the beginning of those religions.

    Governmental action to care for the widow(er)s and orphans, and the poor and the elderly, the foreigner away from his or her own land,  and the sick and those imprisoned (yes, yes, I appreciate the irony) is a version of what we all are called to do, and one reason the first Christians (cited here because I am one, not because they are unusual among religious in this matter) were called as part of the Acts of the Apostles, to bring in their worldly goodies so they  could be shared out among the entire community, not just their prior owners in private. The various government social programs are in my mind and have always been a way of gettting some of that work done in all sorts of places where it needs done, but where I have no idea where are, or how to get services and benefits to. I do what I do where I am, but they are a way of using my labor and what I got for it, or were when I was working and thought this then as well, to the benefit of those I would never know who should have had the right to expect help but would not have gotten anything at all save for government programs.

    Besides, I grew up on what was survivors' benefits from SS from my father, in the late fifties and early sixties, and those benefits were also there and helpful for my children when my beloved died while they were small. And I remember delivering cans from teh Holiday Can drive to embarrassed families who lived, as it turned out, better than we did when I was twelve.   So I know both sides of it.

    It is also a reason I am irate about all the R CINOs, Christians In Name Only, who keep trying to kill these programs at the same time they keep claiming they support evangelical Christian values, which in their reading apparently do not include either the Beatitudes or the Acts of the Apostles. (And Halacha has harsh words for Eric Cantor as well, and Sharia pointed words for a successor of Keith Ellison if one ever does what Cantor and the CINOs in Congress are doing.)

  •  Have just been whining about tax forms (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JBL55, hbk

    Thanks for putting a more positive spin on it. I won't whine so much. (My family thanks you ☺)

    The deeper that sorrow carves in to your being, the more joy you can contain ~ Khalil Gibran

    by SisTwo on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 12:36:50 PM PDT

  •  I don't mind paying taxes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    But if you love paying taxes, then I'd be happy to give you the gift of paying my taxes for this year!

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 01:58:24 PM PDT

  •  Please don't yell at me. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    samddobermann, tubaguy

     I'm on Social Security.

    But when I give to charity, they assure me they will send me a slip for my tax deductions.

    I wish I had taxes to deduct from.  Really.

     But, folks, I am still paying sales tax and federal tax on other things, like my long needed "new" used car, gasoline, and entertainment.  And until just now, I never give it a thought.

    Still, I'm glad I do it.

    I've paid at least a third of my gross income for various taxes etc through my lifetime, also no complaint.

    •  I would not dream of yelling (0+ / 0-)

      at you.  I am sorry if my diary made you feel bad.  I am truly thrilled that the Social Security taxes I pay help you in some small way.  I expect I may be in your shoes some day, maybe soon, and that the safety net will be there for me too.

      'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own. - Alexander Pope

      by liberaldad2 on Sun Apr 06, 2014 at 04:33:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  That isn't all you paid for (0+ / 0-)

    You paid for billions in bail-outs to banks who then illegally foreclosed on thousands of families, making them homeless.

    You paid for continued aggression in Afghanistan and Iraq and god knows what other places where the official word is "We're not there". (Many of those illegal foreclosures were military families. Nice, huh? Fighting for your country overseas and the bank your taxes helped save tosses your family out on the street - illegally.)

    You paid for increased militarization in the War on Drugs that puts thousands of victim less offenders into private prisons and gives them a permanent felony record that employers use to deny them work after they are released, insuring recidivism.

    That War on Drugs has lead to an increased militarization of the police forces across the country. Reports of police brutality are escalating and more people have been killed by the police than by terrorists since the "War on Terror" began.

    You paid for TSA - an agency that has yet to foil a single terrorist plot but whose members have molested and brutalized passengers and been accused of petty theft of personal electronic items.

    And all the things you are proud of paying taxes to support (Planned Parenthood, libraries, the arts, etc) are all being targeted for elimination while Rand Paul and his posse ensure that tax cuts for the wealthy remain intact and ensure that the income gap widens.

    Oh - and our infrastructure is crumbling because our taxes are going to other things than rebuilding bridges and roads.

    Your taxes are being abused. We don't need to pay more. We need to stop the rampant abuse by our leaders by getting rid of them.

    •  Everyone's own congressman is just great - it's (0+ / 0-)

      everyone else's congressman who needs to be voted out.  Everyone's own senator is great, but everyone else's senator needs to be voted out.

      When we all agree that ALL our senators and congressmen need to be voted out, some of us will cheat and vote for our own congressman or senator anyway.

      And if we DO vote out all our current senators and congressmen, we'll have utter chaos on Capitol Hill because none of the newcomers will have the slightest idea how to govern.

  •  Its all real simple: taxes = civilization... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    penelope pnortney

    No taxes no infrastructure no advanced civilization to speak of. There is a base cost to high civilization that is built into the system. Could Walmarts open in some third world country? They need ports and roads and railroads and trade agreements and police and power, etc...

    Thats what the wealthy like the Waltons and the Kochs don't get, that the entire infrastructure that allows them to operate and generate wealth was created primarily through tax dollars.  They have taken from the system far more than they could ever give back, but they see everyone else as the leeches.

    If all the ports in America shut down tomorrow how much would it hurt you and I? Walmart would go out of business. I use to love taxes when they went to making America greater but now they are all just funneled to the MIC and other interests and I have come to hate them. Now all I do is hedge the bets of the financial sector and feed the never satiated MIC with my tax dollars.

    When the Republicans are in power they get what they want and when the Democrats are in power they still get what they want. At what point do people finally see it is just theater? ~ Me

    by fToRrEeEsSt on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 05:49:20 PM PDT

  •  Outstanding (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Republican voters mouth talking points to avoid having to think.  Which is ironic, given how prone they are to throwing around words like "responsibility" and "patriotism".

  •  Thoughtful diary. Thanks. I do think mega-churches (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    samddobermann, tubaguy

    owning multiple land parcels and business subsidiaries should be subject to audit and pay some taxes. Why should churches be exempt from doing the same good that individuals do with their taxes?

  •  I am so sick of the "whiners" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    samddobermann, tubaguy

    going on and on about taxes.  Pay your damn taxes and shut up.  

    We are taxed at a very reasonable rate in this country and that is what a civilization is all about (you know the "provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity" part of the Constitution.)

    But no, America is all about greed, and "I don't want to pay," and "maybe someone, somewhere is getting something I'm not," and that makes them a "taker."

    I am so sick of the right wing, screw everybody but me mentality that then tries to pass itself off as "patriotism."

    If you are a patriotic American, pay your damn taxes, be thankful, and shut-up!

    Time sets all things right. Error lives but a day. Truth is eternal. - General James Longstreet

    by kbrown2225 on Thu Apr 03, 2014 at 08:57:31 PM PDT

    •  Sick of the whiners, yes... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Chi, liberaldad2

      When I was in college, studying economics and living on student loan money, I found that I really disliked hearing rich people complain about their taxes.  (Forbes magazine and the WSJ editorial page were prime offenders then, before the Fox News days.)

      That was years ago.  At this point, I'm approaching retirement.  I don't complain about my taxes, and I still don't like listening to those who do.

      No whining!

      •  Good for you (0+ / 0-)

        you get it - it makes life easier and way more pleasant to see the glass half full.  I expect we will both live longer as a result.

        'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own. - Alexander Pope

        by liberaldad2 on Sun Apr 06, 2014 at 04:23:45 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I pay my taxes (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Because I am an American, I pay my taxes. I don't avoid it. Without our tax dollars our country would be SOL. I like what my tax dollars buy for me. I'd be happier if they bought less military but I understand that the world isn't perfect. I pay my taxes on time and go on with my life.

    Millionaires and billionaires should pay higher taxes because they use more government services to get the money they earn. They may not want to admit it but they wouldn't have any money without the Federal Government.

    This is not a wild eyed radical position. Theodore Roosevelt, stated that having too much money in too few hands is, in essence, un-American and bad for the country.

    This means that these slash the taxes people are, in essence, un-American.

    Not that I would like to call them that.

    Waving the flag does not equal patriotism. Paying taxes does.

    Trying to influence government so that one pays lower tax rate than those who are less rich means one is not patriotic.

    That means that claiming to be more patriotic because one can spend more on politics without making sure everybody else can spend the same amount of money as you are spending is, in essence, anti-American. Theoretically we are all equal in the eyes of the law. Buying politicians is an unfair advantage.

    The problem is that the new rich do not understand that with great wealth comes great responsibility - fiscally supporting the country you live in is one of them.

  •  States and local governments are, like you, (0+ / 0-)

    businesses, and the Euro Zone, currency users, so must earn dollars.

    The Fed Gov, on the other hand, is a sovereign currency issuer.  It's the source of all dollars, and as such, doesn't need to earn dollars to fund itself.

    As the Chairman of The Fed Reserve, Merriner Eccles, noted in 1933 when we went off the gold standard, "Taxes are obsolete" for the purpose of funding the fed government.

    The fed gov creates dollars out of thin air.

    It's self funding.

    It doesn't rely upon either taxes or borrowing.

    T Bonds no longer represent borrowing, they're time deposits that earn interest, like a CD.

    Short video showing how our monetary system works:

    We don't invest in the government.

    The government is the investor, always:

    The government doesn't have a credit card, it is  the credit card:

  •  Thanks. (0+ / 0-)

    I needed this.

    I was fuming and really upset because...for the last seven years I was on disability.  I have since relinquished the disability, as I have - in SPITE of my disabling condition, been able to start my own company and make a living off of it.

    And this year, I will have to pay $1400 to the Feds and $500 to Harrisburg - ON TOP OF ALL THE MONEY I ALREADY SENT THEM ALL YEAR LONG.

    And as a result of this...and the fact that, in my industry, traditionally the first quarter is always the lowest earnings...I will be unable to pay myself any salary for March (which I would have paid myself in April)  I also had to pay myself only half-salary in March (For February)

    And all this because my taxes are going to pay for nuclear bombs and to give financial aid to countries that hate us!!

    And I was FUMING, because I would not get to pay myself, so that the IRS and Harrisburg could scoop it all up and have it NOT HELP MY FELLOW AMERICANS.

    Don't get me wrong, if my taxes ACTUALLY GO TO HELP MY FELLOW AMERICANS...I don't mind paying my share.  So thanks for reminded me of the things my taxes are paying for that DO help my fellow Americans. fellow Americans...enjoy it...and know that it was paid for on the back of my having only half-salary for one month, and NO salary for another month.  while guys like Trump and Gates and Buffett - DID NOT PAY THEIR DAMN FAIR SHARE!!  

    Do you think those guys ever missed ANY of the money they paid in?  I can tell you the taxes I paid HURT THE HELL OUT OF ME.  where's MY goddamn tax relief?  What about getting more of the money from the big boys who can actually afford it without forgoing their own salary?

  •  Paying taxes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    samddobermann, tubaguy

    For me it is rather simple.  When I write the check (if not getting a refund) I ask myself, "if I was in ….Afghanistan, Iraq, India, China, etc., would I pay $x amount to get to the USA?"

    The answer is always yes.

  •  Federal Budget: $2.5 Billion (0+ / 0-)

    The federal budget is actually about $2.5 billion a year. What people forget when they talk about the budget is that Social Security and Medicare are not government spending. They are transfer payments, and they are part of the private sector.

    Social Security and Medicare force employers to pay more of the actual costs of their labor force. They are a form of minimum wage.

    When progressives talk about the federal budget we should always remove the money that comes in as payroll taxes. That money is not part of the federal budget, per se. It's just money that the government collects on behalf of workers, to make sure they actually get it when they retire (or are disabled).

    You'll see here that about a $1 billion was raised by payroll taxes. The spending on Social Security and Medicare is higher, so some of the federal budget actually goes to support these programs. But that should not be the case. Payroll taxes should be raised to pay the total costs of these programs. (The employer part of the contribution, specifically, should be raised to balance out the increase in productivity that has gone to employers rather than employees over the last few decades.)

    ACA does some good here, because it raises more money for Medicare through increased taxes. It doesn't go far enough, but in the future the cost to the federal budget will be lessened by this.

  •  Taxes Are Not Too High; Incomes Are Too Low (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If you're having problems paying your taxes you need a higher income. Probably, you need a raise. You might even need a union.

    When people start complaining about taxes we should always reply:

    Taxes are not too high. Incomes are too low.
    See what they do with that.
    •  An Important and General Idea (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Liberal Thinking

      The particular example of this that gets my blood up is when people complain that public sector employees get decent pensions, as if that is somehow unfair to honest working people.

      I like to point out that they have accepted lower pay up front in return for a bit of security in retirement - and that it used to be that most people in decent jobs could look forward to a pension, but this benefit has been swindled away by modern corporate Human Resources practice.  In other words, the problem is not that the public sector is too generous but that the private sector is too stingy.

      Further examples abound.

      o caminho d'ouro, uma pinga de mel: Parati

      by tarkangi on Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 09:38:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  That Makes Me Angry, Too (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tarkangi, Chi

        The labor market really makes sure that public sector workers are not overpaid relative to private sector workers. If they were, people would be leaving private sector jobs to go over there. But we don't see any great movement because everyone who's looked into it knows the overall compensation is probably better on the private side.

        I've designed this saying ("taxes are not too high...") specifically to move the argument from taxes to income. Our opponents have put a lot of energy in assailing taxes. When someone attacks taxes I want the public to immediately think, "Why am I not getting a raise? Why am I underpaid?" If raising the issue of taxes results in workers wanting more money, pretty soon this constant questioning of taxes (per se) will go away because our opponents will find it too painful to raise the issue. Saying the word "taxes" will trigger the word "union" in the minds of workers.

        That will put an end to it.

        •  Exactly the right approach (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          The charts of compensation and productivity, as a function of time since 1970, they come in a variety of flavors but they all agree that GDP has doubled while compensation has stayed flat in real terms.  Which means that the 0.1% has all the income that they had in 1970, along with an additional chunk of income equal in magnitude to the entire economy of the United States in 1970.

          Try to get people to think about that.  If we had the same level of income equality as we had just forty years ago, EVERY SINGLE PERSON IN THE COUNTRY would be making twice as much money as he does today.  A retired couple on Social Security would pull down on the order a fifty thousand dollars a year, a pretty nice way to spend your Golden Years.  Burger flippers would make fifteen dollars an hour even without a mandated minimum wage.  STEM graduates would be princes of labor, earning one hundred fifty thousand dollars a year fresh out of graduate school and toping out at half a million.

          The structural reforms to make this happen would mean that the filthy rich would take it in the neck, but as that means scraping along on fifty million a year instead of a billion a year I don't think that anyone outside the circle of their chronic pity party will shed a tear for them and their anguish.

          And the crazy crazy crazy truth is that a few relatively modest changes in tax policy and financial regulation would be all that's needed to lead us into this paradise.

          The sad fact is that most people have no idea how wealthy this country is, and how badly they have been cheated.

          o caminho d'ouro, uma pinga de mel: Parati

          by tarkangi on Sat Apr 05, 2014 at 11:04:27 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  ACA Medicare tax (0+ / 0-)

    re your statement:

    I have just learned that the ACA subsidies were funded by a special tax on those citizens with AGI over $250,000
    Can you verify that this is true?  I have been trying to find a reliable source indicating that the 2 new so-called Medicare taxes introduced in the ACA are, in fact, earmarked for health-care spending.  I refer to the Net Investment Income Tax of 3.8% on investment/capital gains income, and the 0.9% Medicare Sur-tax on wages and income, each on MAGIs > $200K.

    Instead, what little I am able to find, albeit from sources of unknown veracity, indicates the opposite; i.e. that the funds generated by these provision are NOT earmarked for Medicare of health care purposes but go into the general treasury to be spent for whatever purpose Congress deems appropriate.

    Can anyone bring some clarity to this?

  •  If you love America (0+ / 0-)

    If you really like all that our country has to offer, you should see paying taxes as a Patriotic duty, not a burden. People who hate America hate paying taxes.

    •  Hummmm (0+ / 0-)

      Generally, I might agree with you...but only when my taxes are used for purposes I APPROVE OF....which means, things that ACTUALLY BENEFIT MY FELLOW AMERICANS....and not building more nukes or otherwise feeding the Pentagon and the military-industrial complex.

      As I posted above...I own my own business.  This, after seven years on disability.  I used my time on disability to obtain an education, and used my new skills to launch my business, and make it profitable, and a livable income - such that I was able to give up the disability payments - IN SPITE OF STILL HAVING MY DISABLING CONDITION.

      Now, when my taxes go to help someone like I was out...I am all in favor.  When my taxes go to improve roads, bridges, infrastructure...I am all for it.  when my taxes go to provide an actual excellent education (rather than what passes for such here in America) - I am all for it.

      When my taxes go to pay for disaster relief for people harmed by natural disasters, and when it goes to provide fire and police protection...when it goes to provide healthy nutritious meals to those who would otherwise starve, I am all in favor.

      But, everyone here please note...
      I am a self-employed person.  Thus I pay double payroll taxes.  I pay my personal share and the employer's share of my Social Security and Medicare taxes.  I pay into Unemployment Compensation...even though I can never collect it (If my business employees would get UC the owner of the business, I get nothing...even though I am paying in on myself as an employee)

      As it is now, I happen to be the sole employee of my little enterprise.  BUT...because of all the tax I have to pay on April both Washington and Harrisburg...ON TOP OF ALL THE MONEY I SENT IN ALL YEAR LONG...

      I had to pay myself only HALF-SALARY for February, and NO SALARY AT ALL for March.  How many of you would like going without your entire salary for a order to pay taxes....especially when those taxes are all too often spent on things I totally disagree with?

      I sure hope that SOME of what I am forced to do without - helps some of my fellow Americans directly...instead of feeding the Pentagon and going to countries that hate us. light of what I am having to go order to pay "my fair share" - there better not be one single Republican (or Democrat) out there who accuses ME of "hating America" or otherwise questions MY patriotism!!

      I wonder how many of these wealthy Republican bastards go without salary for a whole month in order to pay taxes, like I am having to do!

      •  Couldn't agree more (0+ / 0-)

        Why do my taxes need to go to anything I don't like.

        You best believe it does

        by HangsLeft on Fri Apr 04, 2014 at 03:52:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  In our democracy, (0+ / 0-)

          We pay taxes, then elect representatives who spend it, ideally according to our best interests.  Admittedly, it doesn't always work that way.  So we have to keep fighting to elect the best and most honest legislators and administrators who will always represent our interests and spend our tax money in the best interests of the country, and to pass laws that make that not only possible, but easy.  That is a war that is never won, only fought one battle at a time.

          'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own. - Alexander Pope

          by liberaldad2 on Sun Apr 06, 2014 at 04:45:36 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Loving taxes (0+ / 0-)

    You are most like right that loving to pay taxes is a little strong but I still agree that it is better that we can and do than we don't and hide.  I paid a little less than the average that you mentioned but I'm also over 65 and just in the average range.  So CA got almost $500 and Uncle Sam got over $2900.  I sent it out on 04/01/2014 just to have it finished and it will most likely be deducted from my checking account before 4/10 as it was last year.

    Now you and I and others of the same thought can sit back watch the other suffer just because they waited until the last minute or they kept telling themselves how much they hated paying the taxes.  "Pobrecitos!!"

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