TAXES AND DAMN TAXES

April 3, 2012

I only met one person who didn’t complain about taxes. His name was Larry Santos and  he paid cheerfully and was grateful that he could afford to pay taxes. From a poor,  immigrant family from Portugal, where the King was known to skin his sheep rather than shear them, (in his parents generation) he believed the philosophy that taxation without representation was oppression and tax tyranny gave birth to the American Revolution and a mighty nation.

Idealism is admirable, but he would probably be cursing with the rest of us if he was alive today. I honk every time I see a bumper sticker that says:   “Throw The Bums Out.”  My philosophy exactly. Throw them out and let us start over. And I know right where to throw them:

I grumble about  paying my taxes, not as much about paying them as  preparing for them.  I have them professionally done, but the difficult process to gather and get all the varied information together plagues me. I’m numbers challenged, which is part of the travail. Today I look to the headlines, philosophers and pundits about  taxation:

In the headlines on my email this morning:

Subsidized Senators Reject Call to End Big Oil Tax Breaks

The 47 Senators (43 Republicans and 4 Democrats) who voted against procedural hearing to bring the bill to the table have received over $23.5 million in career contributions from Big Oil. As for the 51 Senators who voted for the bill? They have received a paltry-by-comparison $5.8 million.   Source:   Gas 2.0 (http://s.tt/18G25)  I’m sure the 51 are feeling righteous.  Doncha just love it?  Toss them too.
“Taxes are the sinews of the state.”  Cicero
(More likely the ropes to hang the middle class.)
“Millions for defense; not a penny for tribute.”   C.C. Pinckney.
“Taxes are indeed heavy, and if those laid by government were the only ones we might discharge them easily. …more grievous we are taxed twice by idleness, three times as much by pride, four times as much by folly. ”   Franklin
(He was a better inventor than philosopher.
“What a benefit would the government render  to itself…if it would tax whiskey and rum almost to the point of prohibition. Tobacco and opium have broad backs and will cheerfully carry the load of armies.”   Emerson
Hah!  It doesn’t pay for OUR armies.
“Vices make very good patriots.  He (the king) got five millions from the love of brandy, what virtue could pay so much?”  Bonaparte
“As the general rule in a constitutional state…heaviness in taxation is the price of liberty, and in despotic states, you give away liberty for the lightness of taxation.”   Montesquieu
“To tax the community to the advantage of a class is not protection, it is plunder.”   Benjamin Disraeli
True enough.
‘”Anybody has the right to evade taxes if he can get away with it. No citizen has a moral obligation to assist in maintaining the government. If congress insists on making stupid mistakes and passing foolish tax laws, millionaires should not be condemned for taking advantage of them.”  Pierpont Morgan    (He belongs with the people in government he paid off .)
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