It is that time of year again my friends. The time we all seem to feel, put’s us in a position of claiming we would rather have a root canal. Time consuming, invasion of our privacy and the most convoluted approach one can dream up for feeding the beast. What roils me most, is that it usually approximates the blessed Easter season. A damper on a beautiful time indeed. The feds seem to have more confidential information about me than my Priest and perhaps my lovely wife.
I have yet to meet someone who enjoys this. The estimates are that to comply with the existing tax system requires approximately as much time and productivity as to the manufacture of every moving vehicle in the United States annually. In simpler terms, the man hours consumed by more than one state the size of Ohio working for one full year. How is that for productivity? An abject failure. Ross Perot at least had one thing right. Send in a postcard with your gross wages. Then send in a check for 10% of these wages. Five minutes tops. Then we can get back to building airplanes and Easter egg hunts. I am in.
And the costs of compliance approximate $400 billion annually. I am sure we can all find better usage of these funds. Who is at fault? Well without a doubt it is our Congress of the last 100 years. When they realized they can dispense favors to certain groups in exchange for cash, the race was on. We pay the price for their avarice annually. Remember, when taxes began implementation 100 years ago, the top rate was 2% and only charged to the wealthy. How times have changed. I after all, am by no means wealthy. Yet I pay more tax each year then General Electric. A centi billion dollar generator of wealth. Go figure. I suppose it helps when the CEO Jeff Immelt, works for President Obama on his jobs programs. Hey Mr. President, I am free and willing to take Jeff’s position on the committee. I bet I can be more successful than he. It was worth a try. As you must know Sir, Mr. Immelt has exported some 70,000 jobs overseas as CEO of GE.But that is another matter.
I could almost accept the bill due, if it did not require so much time to comply and push paper hidden in a shoe box. As well as expense as it is costly to complete the forms properly so as to stay out of jail. Where is the ACLU when we need them. Privacy rights? Is that not your cause celeb? Now I remember. They also receive funds from the beast. Never mind.
The old economic axiom goes and I paraphrase, “If you want less of something, tax it more. If you want more of something, tax it less”. Russia is a prime example of this axiom as is most of Europe. Europe taxes the hell out of its people. Yet the people do not cough it up as they should. Witness Greece, the country of my forefathers. Almost half the nation does not bother to comply with the beast. Perhaps one of many reasons they are in the current state of financial turmoil. Back to the Bear. They learned early in their quest for freedom that confiscatory taxes lead to non compliance and a giant hole in revenues. Around 1995, they decided to go the way of Hong Kong and Singapore, two wildly successful low tax countries who continue to thrive and attract financial liquidity. They implemented a flat 15% tax. Lo and behold, compliance as well as revenue shot through the roof. Here, we turn people in to criminals. Either through evasion or political bribery. The system must change and if we had the political stones to do so, this economic engine would boom.
But that is not what this is about. It is all about political power and cronyism. We all pay far too high a price. The rich and the middle class bear the brunt. And I detest class warfare. I am for equality in the eyes of the law for all. But corporate classes, they live in a different realm. They are the biggest teet suckers and most rewarded. Witness offshore funds which some estimates take them to $5 trillion potentially and shielded from taxation. How the f.. do they get away with it? You and I can’t follow their path. Oh, that is right. I don’t have millions to donate to a campaign. Simple answer. Many rich corporations can park money overseas and evade tax. We can’t.
There is no one on the planet who understands the 90,000 odd pages of the tax code. Why do we need so many pages? We don’t. Obviously many are hurt and fewer actually benefit from this monstrosity. I have been hearing of reform for 40 years. Yet each year the complexity increases. No balls in D.C.! Just plenty of blame to go around and scapegoats made and a fat cat Congress worthy of not much more than extorting money. Useless tools they be.
In the end, it doesn’t really matter. It will never change unfortunately and pity that. The politicians will not allow it so. Heaven forbid, they yield power to those whom they work for ie.. US. The real bosses who seem to be in an eternal slumber. I pray for the next generation as should you all.
Article first published as <a href=’http://technorati.com/politics/article/the-dreaded-april-15th-deadline-approaches/’>The Dreaded April 15th Deadline Approaches!</a> on Technorati.