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Thursday, June 4, 2009


I hate working on taxes. I work myself up into a tizzy as I am afraid of making a mistake. Sometimes, my dear husband isn't as forthcoming with information as he should....

Don't get me wrong, I do not try to avoid PAYING taxes, I just put off trying to figure them out. I feel that there are things which we have to pay into if we are going to use them--and that means schools, highways, milk subsidies, and millions of other things that we all take for granted. We have been raised with them. We don't even think about them.

Heck, I didn't know about the effect of government milk subsidies until I lived in Nova Scotia for three months in 1981. At that point, when we were paying about $1.67 a gallon here, milk there was over $3.00 US a gallon.

I do feel that the tax code is a complicated mess. I read the manuals and try to figure out what they are asking. I bless Turbo-Tax. I also snarl that we should be paying equitable amounts, and it isn't fair that the wealthy, who SHOULD be able to pay their taxes can get off because they can pay the people to find the loop holes.

I know that some of my conservative friends keep on saying that there shouldn't be taxes paid to the FEDERAL government that the State and Local governments should be able to handle things directly without it being filtered down and siphoned off. However, I also had many discussions with our State representative in Connecticut. I discovered that quite often people on the state and local levels did what was politically expedient, not what was needed. In other words, they couldn't raise taxes when the Federal government stopped giving funds for things which the Federal Government required, because if they did so, they would not be re-elected.

I also feel that there should be line-item vetos and I'd love to get the add-ons to bills and other things which give pork-barrel funds out to be cut out. Some of this stuff is just absolutely ridiculous. Someone once asked me if I was in favor of a flat-tax. I haven't thought out the whole ramifications of that, but I suppose in some regards I am.

I also recall that in 1985, I was audited for my 1983 income. In 1983, I had a whole whopping gross income of $5000. About $3,500 of it was a stipend from the College of William and Mary. I had to take a day off work, drive to Hartford, pay $20 in parking fees and sit in the office until my number was called. I was furious. Even if I did have to pay taxes on the stipend (which I didn't, William and Mary just reported it strangely), it would have come to a piddling amount of maybe $100 or so. Why did the Federal Government feel the need to go after such a piddling amount? It was a waste of time and effort...and of course I couldn't take that $20 parking fee off on my next years taxes.

I know it is a complicated subject. I know I don't know enough about it to really be able to say. I was talking with a local leader about taxes and he said that he asked once why the tax codes/laws were so difficult to understand and was told that many of them were designed in such as way so that they could be interpreted differently and that some of them were to give benefits to friends. I can easily see how some politicians can accidently not pay all the taxes they were supposed fact, that is what happened to me this year.

Just after I filed the taxes for 2009, I got a letter from the IRS saying that I neglected to report our income which was reported on the 1099DIV. I went back over my files. I didn't have the 1099DIV. I don't know if my husband didn't give it to me or if it didn't come to us, so after a little research, I paid the Federal income tax and the penalty on the amount we had not paid.

That also meant that I had to re-do the taxes and amend the return to the state for 2007. I dreaded it. Things I dread, I usually put off. I tried to do it a couple of weeks ago and my head started to spin. I went back to it on Monday and was able to complete it.

I don't know about you, but the things I dread, I put off. Often, after I finally "put on my big girl panties" and deal with it, I find that it isn't as bad as I thought....but I suppose that every year, when April 15th rolls around.....or March 15 with is usually when I start, I will still break out into a sweat. The weird thing is that I don't try to hide anything.

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