Thursday, February 10, 2011


I wanted to set down some thoughts about taxes. Gonna be a lot of talk about taxes com’in soon and I want to try and get it thought out.

We all pay taxes and fees. It has to be that way. Except for a very few self sufficient individuals living in rural or near wilderness areas we all use government services. Just by living in the country you benefit from the funding of the armed services. Water, sewer, roads, schools, law enforcement, education are things that we all use, or derive benefit from and they’re paid for by a slew of local, state, and federal taxes. We have to buy tax stickers for our car windows, and plates for the bumpers. We pay an excise tax for the gasoline and other petroleum products that we use. We pay taxes to put tags on our pets. We just pay a lot of money in taxes, or at least that’s the way it seems.

The federal tax system was supposed to be simple (the more you make, the more you pay) but if it ever was, it’s far from that now. It’s been shot full of holes and tied in loops to reflect the desires of our elected officials and their “special” friends. The full code is over 17,000 pages long and so complex that federal monetary and tax officials seem incapable of following all of the rules. It’s been common knowledge that the federal tax code is FUBAR for as many years as I can remember. The instructions for the 1040EZ, the simplest form, are forty pages long, for the 1040, one hundred and five.

You won’t find a single elected official that will defend the tax system and yet it remains unchanged and the tax code grows in length and complexity every single year. How can it be that a system without defenders or a supporting constituency can continue to exist in a representative democracy?

I don’t have anything near an answer for that question, but I do think the question itself speaks to the dangerous nature of government programs. No one ever envisioned the mess that the current tax system is. It started out simple enough but then at some point turned Meta stable. For many decades it has grown as it careens about with politicians using it for their own benefit, completely indifferent to the original purpose, and without any thought as to what the purpose should even be.

And this brings me to The Affordable Healthcare Act. ObamaCare if you will. The danger is perhaps not easy to see, but if something as simple as a graduated income tax can become complex beyond comprehension and more resistant to change than the hardest metal what will come of a health care system that at its inception created no fewer than 160 new agencies and boards. One requiring many thousands of pages of cross connected regulation that no one has even the most remote chance of understanding. What defense can we possibly have from an entity like that?

But that’s just what an average guy thinks.