Following with the theme of not getting a damn thing done to get my stories posted, I decided I would go ahead and do my taxes today then get to the site work. That turned out to be a bad idea.
Taxes, in general, are not really that difficult. I mean really, it is just a bunch of numbers that one must throw into a form that looks much like a spreadsheet. I would think that any chimp could do their own taxes, unless they are one of the chimps who make a lot of money and are personally in charge of thousands of employees and the such -they probably go to H&R Block-. Though I really doubt that if you were to look at Bill Gates’ tax forms it would say that they were prepared by a glorified kiosk in a SEARS store. I guess that is why CPAs actually have jobs.
While doing the taxes this year I realized that entire point of them is to crush the ‘american dream’. I mean it is your goal to be successful and to have your worth appreciate annualy, yet, the more your worth appreciates the more taxes you have to pay. I am not talking about a billionaire who has to pay 250 million in taxes, because honestly if you have a Billion dollars you either inherited it or made it on a good idea followed by the labor of the lower class, I have no sympathy for you.
What occurs to me is that the whole taxing system is more of a direct inverse of the ‘american dream’. I will elaborate. If you make really good money (and I mean really good, like sports star, current musical artist, wealthy investor), they tax your earning to like 40% and that is just the Federal tax. That was the reason why there was such rejoice from investors when the Clinton Administration got the bill passed to make some long term stock sales only taxable at 28%. It is difficult for me to understand the way that actual law works (as their are a lot of resrictions and qualifications that must be met for it to be possible) but, I do understand the rejoice. If you had a million dollars in stock, then sold it and had only 600,000 dollars that would seem pretty harsh. If that same stock could qualify for the 28% rate, you would have 720,000 dollars. That is a 120,000 dollar difference, quite a hefty chunk of change.
Who else gets taxed at a rate of 40% -or hell even 28%- for federal tax? Only the very, very wealthy. I have capital gains that I had not yet paid taxes on and I did have to pay a huge amount on those gains, but that was not nearly 40%, were I to move up a couple of dozen tax brackets I may be in trouble. Though if I were in the league of the 40% payers I guess I would have so much money that I really would not give a damn. Actually, I bet I would be totally pissed off still, but my reasons would be different.
The cash cow of our society seems to be the lower class. Now, I know that the lower class is the class in the most need of support, but, if you make less annually than you get back on your taxes I think there may be a real problem. If you have a minimum wage job where I live and work a 40 hour week, you will make just a tad under 11,000 dollars in a year. That is not very much money at all. If you are that same person, and have a wife and a few children there would be no way that you could possibly support them on that income. So, the government steps in and puts them on programs like WIC, Foodstamps and Welfare. Then, they do not take any taxes out of their pay, to help them support their family. Then, when the tax time comes they are giddy with excitement to find that they will be getting over 2,000 dollars back (I use the word ‘back’ to mean that that is the amount of a ‘refund’ check that they are sent, but since they paid no taxes it is more of a gift).
I am not saying that we should just let poor people starve, or that we should kill the rich and distribute the money among the lower classes. Nor would I like to live in a Socialist economy. I just think that the money that the middle class puts into the pot should not be so easily squandered. The very, very rich are the only people that matter in Washington, the only reason that laws get passed is because of them. The very, very poor people get programs to pay for everything from their house to their food, their car, etc…
I am now going to go into speculation, with absolutely no proof to back it up, and no desire to actually research the subject. I am betting that a single woman with three children and a 12,000 dollar a year job actually makes more money than a woman with no children and a 25,000 dollar a year job. By that, I mean that through government programs giving her assistance for all the necessities, if you add up the total of all of the benefits she is getting and add them to the base 12,000, then add the tax check that she is going to get, I am pretty sure that it would be more than 25,000 per year. The woman making 25,000 a year will have to actually pay in taxes over the course of the year about 7% in that tax bracket I think.
This is going nowhere, as usual. This is exactly the reason that I hate doing taxes. It always puts me in a foul mood. Having a foul mood, and a forum where I can post anything I want without fear of repurcussion is not necessarily a good thing. That is, I bet it sure makes me sound like an ass.
It is not that I think that our tax money should not be used to help the poor, just that I would much rather see it being used for things like Passive Birth Control for single mothers who are on welfare. Programs to search out dead beat dads and force them to pay the child support that they are required to. Maybe even paying for daycare for the single mothers to go to school – even if only a trade school- to educate themselves so that they can get better jobs and become self-sufficient.
The way the tax money is being used now it is perpetuating the problem. The programs that are in place make it so that an uneducated single mother (or father for that matter) will never really have to go without food or shelter. If the money were used to offer programs to help the people better themselves, as opposed to just being hand-outs, it would do a lot to help stop the cycle -at least slow it down-. There are statistics that show that children who grow up on welfare are far more likely to end up on welfare, and that makes since, after all, that was the only way they had ever lived. Similarly, teen mothers’ children are more likely to be teen mothers themselves.
I better stop now, this is just a train wreck. Someone remind me never to do my taxes before I sit down to write anything again.