The two unavoidable facts of life. The misery of this head ‘n chest cold I’ve suffered the last few days had me wondering if the former was nigh. So I set myself to the other unavoidable fact. I discovered I did a very poor job of tax planning this year. Ordinarily we could rely on a tax refund, a few hundred bucks, sometimes more. This year – spank! The amount we owe to the feds should be enough to pay for our own warhead – our names etched lightly on the tip of the ordnance: “Courtesy of the Nibbe family. Enjoy!” A sturdy expression of participatory democracy, a direct connection between the means and the end. In that spirit I have suggested that the 1040 include check boxes for the taxpayer to indicate where (or where not) she wants her tax dollars spent. Like the United Way does. My guess is that this would put an end to The War on Drugs lickety-split. And I imagine a great deal of other government profligacy as well. Instead, we have no idea, or more correctly no direct say, in how our tax dollars are spent. Supposedly, all the money is placed in a big pot of munificence to be later doled out by benevolent-minded folks who swore to protect and serve TheAmericanPeople®. I’m sure that happens to a limited extent. Increasingly, much of it now goes to pay interest on a debt incurred by having to borrow to pay for ever more profligacy past promises and obligations. Before too much longer we (my bride & I) will, ourselves, become obligations.
One consolation of the first inevitable fact of life is that it brings a merciful end to the second.