Thoughtful Thursday – The Tax Man Cometh

It’s that time of year most of us dread – Tax Day! So for today, some interesting facts about taxes.

In 1861, Congress passed the “first” tax on personal income to fund the costs of the Civil War. When the war ended, the tax was repealed. (For a history of the U.S. tax system, you can read this article on Tax History at the Treasury Department.) To cope with the costs of World War I, the personal income tax was brought back and it was all downhill from there.

According to Rasmussen Reports, 61% of Americans believe cutting taxes will help the economy and 66% think that Americans are overtaxed.

Kiplinger analyzed tax burdens and reports that, “the top 1% (of Americans) pay 39.89% of all federal individual income taxes. The bottom 50% of earners pay just 2.99% of those taxes.” The top 10% (those earning more than $108905 or more) bear 71% of the tax burden (also from Kiplingers).

41% of New Yorkers did not pay federal taxes last year reports the NY Post. Now this is depressing not because they did not pay taxes, but because in a state with the world’s financial center – New York City – there should be more prosperity.

The Tax Foundation did its annual calculations and indicated that most Americans will work over three months, from January 1 to April 9 before they have earned enough money to pay this year’s taxes. In New Jersey, we get to work an additional 16 days — until April 25 — to pay all those taxes. Thanks, Corzine!

So what’s the average person supposed to do?

As the old saying goes, there are two things in life you cannot avoid — Death and Taxes. Ask Al Capone. Tax evasion did him in!

But on that note, wasn’t it John Kennedy who said:

“As they say on my own Cape Cod, a rising tide lifts all the boats. And a partnership, by definition, serves both partners, without domination or unfair advantage.”
1963 J. F. Kennedy Address 25 June in Public Papers of Presidents of U.S. (1964) 519 from Answers.com

Hmmm . . . maybe the Tax Man should Cometh a little less? Or at least leave some change in our pockets? LOL! Since that seems unlikely in the near future, how about taking advantage of some of these Tax Day Freebies being offered to take the sting out of things? Click on this link to find out how to get free and/or reduced specials at Starbucks, Maggie Moos, Cinnabon, McCormick & Schmicks and others.

Al Capone Mug Shot taken by the Department of Justice when Al went to Alcatraz for a 10 year term for Tax Evasion
Al Capone Mug Shot from Dept of Justice

4 thoughts on “Thoughtful Thursday – The Tax Man Cometh”

  1. I have attained the age where I am not required to pay taxes. I have no taxable income. I am happy for that but would rather have more income and pay some taxes. Life would be better.

  2. A group of senior citizens is eating out tonight – Italian – it’s all we can afford at this time. In fact, What’s His Name says that I must order spaghetti because it is the least expensive!

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