Posted by: canthold | March 19, 2008

Death & Taxes

I was just about home with my dog this morning from our early walk and my neighbor was frantic about finding a dove in the street. It was clearly dying and she was clearly disturbed. I didn’t know what to do.

I had to keep my dog away so I kept my distance and – quite frankly – I was glad that it was not my cat, which is what I thought she was telling me when we first approached. My first thought was that it had been hit by a car. My neighbor’s first thought was avian flu. (My neighbor told me she was going to call the county.)

While I did nothing to help the bird (what could I do?) it has not been far from my thoughts all day. Death is a fact of life and it makes appreciating the life we live a bit more important at the reminder that it’s inevitable.

And then the other inevitable thing – taxes – has been on my mind, too. I have some quick questions about filing this year and I don’t exactly know where to turn for answers. Accountants tend to be quite busy this year and certainly can’t be expected to dole out free advice. I don’t necessarily want to pay an accountant to prepare my already prepared taxes again just to answer this question.

I believe it was Monday at about 9pm when I was on the phone to the IRS to ask away. The person believed that it was too complicated to answer herself and transferred me. After being on hold for an hour, I decided that I didn’t want to wait any longer.

There is a problem with our country when average citizens cannot prepare their own taxes. This is probably why, on principal, I don’t want to hire someone. Should we NOT reform our tax system to keep this entire niche group of workers employed? No. So why haven’t we ever simplified our tax filing in the country?

Wouldn’t it be easier if everyone paid a flat tax? Add all your income into the pot and pay a bit of that. I heard a long time ago, and don’t know if it’s true, that if everyone paid a small percentage of their income, without loopholes, the government would make more money. I DARE the politicians to fix this this ridiculous system.

I’ve also heard just recently that tax filing is the latest scam. The despicable scammers are filing returns for their victims and receiving their refund. Watch out. Someone is always out to take what’s not theirs.

And speaking again of death…today is the fifth anniversary of the war. I caught some headline that said Bush says it’s worth it. Three trillion dollars, well over 3000 American lives lost, and zero weapons of mass destruction. Yeah, sure, that’s something I’d be proud of if I were Bush.

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