According to the Tax Foundation, "Tax Freedom Day" will take place on April 9 this year. They say this means on that day Americans will have earned only enough money to pay off their total tax bill for 2010. By these statistics Americans work 99 days -- or 26.89 percent -- of the year for the government while having the remainder of the year to pay for all necessities. If it helps any, apparently in Great Britain "Tax Freedom Day" doesn't come until May 30.
Let me get this straight...
In order to run the government the feds need us to pay them some enigmatic amount of money based more-or-less on how much of this money stuff we had pass through our hands the previous year.
Every time this money thing passes from one hand to another the another is supposed to dutifully report the amount so that the government can get their fair but indecipherable share.
And, why exactly to corporations not want to make more profit because they'd pay more taxes?
As a society we have learned to spend and not try to keep any of this money, even though the receiver must pay part in taxes. If put in a box the government punishes us by printing more money than it has money. If carefully invested the government punishes us by taking "their share".
In order to collect their share of our money the feds (and state and county and city) set up innumerable and money-consuming bureaucracies -- any one of which might just cost as much to maintain as taxes collected.
If you and I agree to exchange, say, my brilliant writing skill for your apple pie, we each have a "value" which, technically and legally, is also income, maybe. The duty dutifully due cannot be paid in writing skill or apple pie, but in mere money.
If I have U.S. Bonds the interest gained cannot be taxed by the Great State of Indiana (which might actually need it); but I do pay tax to the federal government on money they paid me. This after I agree to pay a "tax" of accepting lower interest.
In like manner, federal employees generally work for less money (e.g. President Obama's new Chief-of-Staff took a huge pay cut), but they still pay taxes on what they get. As someone asked, are they really paying taxes or just taking a further cut in pay?
Just incidentally, The Great State of Indiana seems to have both a billion-dollar reserve and massive debt (to the federal government of all people).
In all of this we have to use the cash money the federal government prints and issues; they can't just use some of it themselves and leave us alone. Better yet, let us print our own and they can just keep theirs!
We hear tell the "value" of the dollar is kept "up" or "falls" depending on what the markets dictate, unless one government or another does this-or-that to control their currency's "value". This seems to mean we shouldn't go to Europe next summer, but drug-war ridden Mexico is fine. Think I'll stay home and count what little is left of my numbers on paper.
David L. Lewis is an observer of and sometimes commentator on life who may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.