Monday, April 17, 2006

Tax THIS

Why am I posting at 3:23 a.m.? Because we JUST finished filing our Federal Income Tax Return. That's right, we wait until the very last day possible. Plus it's been a tough few weeks for us, lots of stress that I might or might not talk about later in the week. Alex has had to have a medication change and adjustment (those of us who live with The Beast that is bipolar disorder just looooooove the blooming springtime and ever-loving Daylight Savings Time--read this DRIPPING with sarcasm and hostility) that has got us both all out of whack with our schedules and had us missing work, so we're UP at all hours anyway, and just happened to realize at around 1:00 a.m. that, uh, taxes are due.

And here's the thing--we have to PAY. I just don't get it. We earn almost exactly what is the median income for married couples in the United States, and we have a child, considerable and ongoing medical expenses, mortgage interest, and other deductibles, we withhold the maximum from our salaries, make charitable donations, and still we PAY. It kills me. I look at the thousands of dollars of our money the government has already taken (keeping US from drawing interest on it during the year), and just shake my head in wonderment that at the end, they actually get MORE.

If I felt like everyone paid their fair share, I wouldn't be nearly this bothered by the whole thing. And I'm not talking about low-income families and people who utilize social programs to get by, but the opposite: CEOs of Fortune 500 companies...the top 2% or whatever it is. Bring on the consumption tax.* If Alan Greenspan is ready for it (and he is), so am I, dang it.

We went through it several times, and can't find any relief. We're sending the money (obviously), but submitting all our info to a professional CPA and seeing if they find something we're doing wrong, in which case we'll file a corrected return later.

And now we're all agitated, so we really can't sleep, and we have to be up in 3 hours to get ready to fulfill our end of this transaction...and we're also all sentimental about that, and a bit emotional. But tonight, our precious Miss Jacy has been bathed, fluffed, and trimmed, had her teeth cleaned and her toenails clipped and perfume applied. She's packed her little bag, including her pillow, covered in the well-worn t-shirt of the love of her life, Alex, and is ready for her long flight from Little Rock, Arkansas, all the way to the wilds of British Columbia, where we know she will be well-loved and will receive individual attention much more in line with what she deserves. *sob* It has been a LONG week, and a longer weekend.

Hopefully things will be back to normal, at least schedule and routine-wise, on Tuesday. I have lots to share, and plenty of pictures, and more soap packages going out, so thank you everyone who ordered for your patience in that regard.

*From a news report a few months ago: "Greenspan pointed out the merits of a "consumption" tax, as well as the challenges of setting up such a tax. Consumption taxes can take the form of national retail sales taxes (search) or a value-added tax, imposed on the increased value of a good or service at each stage of manufacture and distribution and ultimately passed on to the consumer.

"As you know, many economists believe that a consumption tax would be best from the perspective of promoting economic growth — particularly if one were designing a tax system from scratch — because a consumption tax is likely to encourage saving and capital formation," Greenspan said.

"However, getting from the current tax system to a consumption tax raises a challenging set of transition issues," he added."

11 comments:

  1. I love all these early morning posts. This is the fourth time today I have been able to leave the first comment at a site. I never even usually get to leave a SINGLE first comment.

    Sorry to hear about the problems with Alex's medication change. AND about having to pay Uncle Sam more money. You're right, given all those facts you listed it seems really odd that you would have to pay. Hopefully the CPA will uncover some hidden and much needed deductions.

    And I know it must be emotional to let Miss Jacy go, but I know you know that I don't think there is a better household she could be going to than CeCe's. They are all gonna have a great life together.

    Damn. This is what happens when I post first? Just sympathy and empathy and well wishes? No sarcasm or smart ass comments.

    Who am I?

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  2. Sorry to hear that you had to send Miss Jacy off to a new home but I'm sure someone/somedog equally special will come into your life.

    By the way, flat tax would not make the taxation system more fair. In fact it would probably a lot MORE people in a lot WORSE situation then they are now. If that's possible.

    Political economy is taking over my brain!

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  3. Oh, I ADORE "First-Post Mr. Fabulous!" What a prince of a guy!

    johnnydee--If Alan Greenspan's program could be implemented, it seems it would actually work out quite nicely, because things like groceries, baby supplies, medicines, gasoline, etc. that would create hardships for the working class, would be exempt from the tax--we'd only be paying tax on money SPENT. This would also greatly encourage saving, since savings would not be taxed, thereby reducing the need for public assistance programs more and more as time went on. I'll see if I can find an online version of his proposal. It impressed the heck out of me.

    And we do have plenty of dogs, which is why Jacy-girl needed a family of her "very own," that she doesn't have to share with a hoarde of ninja puppies! We'll miss her, but it's the best thing to do for her. We were pretty picky about who got her--you'll notice she's not exactly going right next door! ;-)

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  4. HORDE. That would be a HORDE of puppies. We are not yet hoarding puppies.

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  5. I hate having to pay for an administration I can't stand and a war I don't support.

    ps - guess who gets a refund, yup that's right the Cheney's! WTF?! I need their accoutant..to move to China : )

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  6. I hope this week is better for you all. I wish Alex well and that his meds get balanced out for him.

    That is terrible to have to pay Uncle Sam money. My accountant told me that I owed money this year, but thank goodness the bookkeeper at work (my mom) made a mistake on my W-2 and once corrected I did not owe. I was in a terrible state when I thought that I owed money (tears and worry).

    I'm glad you found a nice family for Jacy and I will keep her in my thoughts that her travels go well. It is always hard to part with them, but it helps when it is to a nice fmaily.

    Looking forward to my soap.

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  7. I hope Alex's medicines get all straightened out soon - I know you had a rought patch with that a while back.

    It looks like Jacy is going to a good loving home :)

    Taxes are a PITA. Mark does ours, since he's self employed. We don't owe the government or the state of NJ but I owe NY (I work in NYC, so I am taxed there). Not sure why I owe though.

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  8. There's a lot of advantages to a consumption based tax system, Belinda, but helping middle class and lower economic strata isn't one of them. The rich are the folk that fare best under such a system since they spend the smallest percentage of their income.

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  9. Your puppy is coming to live on my island! That is very exciting. I feel closer to you by so many degrees now!

    Sorry about the poopy week.

    take care!!

    xxoo

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  10. Jacy will have a great life with CeCe, and will get to grow up with the most expressive little baby I've ever laid virtual eyes on.

    Medication changes are so darned difficult. I hope your week goes better, and that life gets less stressful.

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  11. re:"Because we JUST finished filing our Federal Income Tax Return. That's right, we wait until the very last day possible. "

    Boy, do I know what you mean here. This year I swore it would be different. Nope.

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