Monday, January 28, 2008

Death and taxes

In an overwhelming majority... 2 to 1... it was concluded that I should merge my two blogs to one so if you do not want to read my mild semi-political interjection in this post... Thank you for stopping by and we'll see you on the next post.

Now, for the rest of you, I'd like to talk taxes for a moment.

I recently (December) looked at a pay-stub (LES as it is called in the military) for the first time this year, and realized, OH CRAP!!! Since moving here, I have not paid a dime in Federal income taxes (yes, I still paid FICA and the rest... but no income taxes.) All I wound up paying was a little over $100 back in January and part of February. "This is going to hurt", I thought.

Reluctantly I went ahead and did my taxes so at the very least, I could see how much I owe and can save up before they're due, Right?

So I collect the paperwork, go from website to website getting all of the necessary documentation... I bring up good ol' H&R Block... and I go through the routine. All the time I'm thinking, "This is gonna hurt, this is gonna hurt, this is gonna hurt, ..."


They're going to GIVE me $3,593?!?!?!??!?!

VA is going to "give" me $236?!?!?!?!?
NC is "giving" me another $19?!?!?!?!?

Ok... reassess my math here... I paid VA $996.92... I paid NC $70.00... I paid the Fed $103.14.

$996.92-$236=$760.92 paid to VA
$70.00-$19=$51 paid to NC

Ok... so I'm right there. I paid. I contributed... Maybe not as much as others paid, but these states got compensated in some small way for the services they provide (roads, law enforcement, etc.) to me as the resident. They may have mis-spent it, but that's the topic for another post.


Ok... time for a disclaimer.

Most of my check is tax free. I get housing, food, medical, dental... all of that is paid for by you, through Uncle Sam since I'm in the military. I also get to contribute pre-tax monies to my TSP. It's all part of the package.

But then the Federal Government looks at my taxable income and says, "WHOA, this guy's impoverished! Let's help him out."

I live in a nice home (at least I think it's nice). I have three cars. I bought and sold two boats (sailboat and kayak) this year. We're not "loaded" but we do well enough that we didn't have to declare bankruptcy when our schmuck of a landlord ran off causing us over $5,000 in damages. We tightened our belts and carried on. We're doing what I like to call, OK.

Here's the dilemma. I don't want other people's money. I like to think that I can provide for my family well enough on my salary and benefit package. We're not hungry. We're not wanting for a roof over our heads. We're not wanting for someone to take pity on us.

However, I'm forced to file my taxes without lying. I cannot file a fraudulent claim and therefore, I must get this 'return' (read: payout). To make matters worse, now they're talking of more money in the Spring to include a possible "Yay-you're-able-to-make-babies-bonus" of $300 per kid under 17 years of age!

What the hell is going on here?!?

If you got shafted by the Govvies this year and have a suggestion of how we allocate your portion of our government handout, let me know.

This is absurd. There's just no other way to say it.


I'm sorry the government stole your money and gave it to me?

What the Sam-Heck am I supposed to do with this?

Aargh. I'm going to go eat dinner.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Things to do with the money:

1) Invest in precious metals. Gold and silver coins make interesting conversation pieces as well as convenient hedges against inflation.

2) I don't have to get shot at or carry a pack or be deployed overseas months at a time in my job, so I, for one, vote that you enjoy the money. (Or, at least, enjoy saving it.) You earned every cent of it, bro!

I love you, man.

-- Todderino