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Filed my taxes yesterday

And no matter how many times I’ve filed them (I’m old so a lot), and no matter how sophisticated and whizbang the tax software gets, I always get a bad feeling when I’m done, that I haven’t done them correctly.

It could have something to do with my lifelong fear of any number greater than a single digit, I suppose.

Mostly that bad feeling is to no avail and everything works out fine. At least the feds haven’t come down on me yet.

But this time that bad feeling was spot on because seconds, seriously, mere seconds, after submitting my return I got an email from the tax filing service stating that my return had been rejected by the IRS.

The rejection turned out to be for a silly, easy to fix reason, but the experience left me wondering, if the IRS already knows the math, why do we have to bother to solve for the solution…

I mean, why in this whizbang day and age do I even have to do my taxes?

Is it really just so I have some skin in the game, as the silly mostly right-leaning politicians like to say?

Okay, I can understand large corporations and extremely high earners having to be obliged to keep intricate records and be in close communication with the feds…

But why must a poor swine like myself? Surely, it must cost the government more money than it makes to track the anemic, trickling cash flow of someone in my tax bracket.

And while we’re on the topic, doesn’t it seem a little immoral and against the laws of nature to tax the fruits of one’s labor?

I mean, I’m not against taxes, I understand their need, but it just doesn’t seem right getting taxed/penalized for what we earn to make our living, for our efforts to be constructive citizens.

Why not tax the hell out of us for what we consume like most of the states do? I’m all for a sales/consumption tax, provided it’s not for the purchase of basic needs that people smarter than me would have to determine what would qualify as a need, basic and/or otherwise. And for sure tax the complete hell, every speck of it, out of luxury items.

Again, I’m no numbers guy and I’m not saying an income tax isn’t the best way to fund our federal needs, and I know there’s the whole thing about taxes needing to be progressive and all that, I’m just saying an income tax just seems such an unnatural, immoral way to fund our societal needs, that’s all I’m saying.


Until next year.*

*Sure hope I don’t end up getting audited for this. And speaking of income, don’t forget all my books are free today! I need the reviews, yo!

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Should He Stay Or Should He Go?

Wikimedia Commons

Last year it was announced that the US Treasury Department was planning to remodel the ten-dollar bill by replacing its current male model, Alexander Hamilton, with a female model.

That was before the Broadway musical “Hamilton” became a huge success… and the play’s creator and star and Presidential First Rapper, Lin-Manuel Miranda, had subsequently become an advocate and lobbyist for keeping the Founding Father and “Good Ol’ Boys” OG on the bill.

Miranda met recently with the US Treasury Secretary and it seems that his lobbying effort on behalf of his musical muse has paid off.


So, in the somewhat spirit of the United Nation’s #HeforShe campaign, should Hamilton stay or should he go and be replaced by a female historical hero?

Alexander Hamilton was a Founding Father of the United States, chief staff aide to General George Washington, one of the most influential interpreters and promoters of the U.S. Constitution, the founder of the nation’s financial system, the founder of the Federalist Party, the world’s first voter-based political party, the Father of the United States Coast Guard, and the founder of The New York Post. As the first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton was the primary author of the economic policies of the George Washington administration. (Wikipedia)



If would be great if you could expand on your response in the comment section.

For instance: Who should the female model be? If not Hamilton, then which bill’s male model should go? If you no longer use hard currency, are you, as Kurt is, looking forward to the permanent chip implant?




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The Power of Money, the Money of Power

Chinese Currency
By: Paul. B

There is much ado in the news about China’s Wen Jiabao, the supposed People’s Premier, accumulating a massive fortune, for both himself and his extended family, while serving within the highest ranks of China’s government.

According to New York Times reporting:

Many relatives of Wen Jiabao, including his son, daughter, younger brother and brother-in-law, have become extraordinarily wealthy during his leadership, an investigation by The New York Times shows. A review of corporate and regulatory records indicates that the prime minister’s relatives — some of whom, including his wife, have a knack for aggressive deal making — have controlled assets worth at least $2.7 billion.

No one is surprised by this, right? I mean, when in history has there ever been an authoritarian, non-transparent government where its leaders — and often…well, usually…okay, you’re right, always…those close to the leaders — did not become fabulously wealthy as a result of their position within the government?

We all know the quote, Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely, so it is not news that Jiabao, or any other Chinese government senior leader, and their families and friends, have profited because of their positions.

And you know what else isn’t news? The fact that China has blocked all internet access to the New York Times, as well as to other major news outlets, such as the BBC, that are reporting on the story.

Without a doubt, Western-style democracies are far from perfect; and, without a doubt, many politicians and government officials within these supposed transparent governments have amassed huge, unknowable, amounts of cash because of their positions. Still, at least we who live in countries governed by democracies, with our right to vote and with our freedom of speech, have a semblance of a notion that we can contain the corruption. Whether it’s true or not is debatable, but having a semblance of a notion is better than having none at all.