Tuesday, January 27, 2009

That'll be another pint of blood please

This week, former President Bill Clinton was in town to scold college students about public service. He told them, "I don’t think it’s good enough anymore to define your citizenship by being a good, honest worker and a taxpayer and someone who votes."

Seems like a perfectly apt definition of citizenship to me. But what the hell do I know, right? I'm just a selfish taxpayer and voter.

Jim did our taxes, at least the federal part, this week. After seeing that bottom line, he can't bear to finish the state taxes. I feel like we've been bled dry and we don't even make that much money. This year, we are getting back half of what we've gotten back in the past. While I don't like the idea of using government withholding as a savings plan, it has worked for us. Breaking even with the feds at years end should be the goal, but I don't have the brain power to devote to figuring out the W-4s. (I'd rather use my brain power to bitch about it on my blog!) That said, we know someone who is getting back more than he even put in. This person's take equals our input. And interestingly enough, under the new children's health plan Congress voted through this month, Jim and I qualify for free health care for our children. We wouldn't dream of using it. We pay for our own insurance through Jim's employer, thank you very much. So, in the end, we support ourselves and others who make just a little bit less than us. Why should we shoulder all this? How do I get off this merry-go-round? Do I have to find a cabin in Montana? Maybe I should move to Iceland or Belgium - their governments have collapsed. Maybe something more reasonable will arise from the ruin ...

As people who are good, honest workers, taxpayers and voters, I take severe umbrage at Clinton's assessment. Clinton advocates an increase in public service. Our president wants to make government service cool again. My question: How much more public service can the private sector and the taxpayer support? Do these well-meaning (and well-heeled on our backs, I might add) politicians realize that there will be a tipping point?

That tipping point is when Atlas finally shrugs and says "Enough is enough."

Pardon my caustic ranting ... I'm six days past due and very cranky.

1 comment:

Hi, My name is: Tim said...

What?!? You can't quote Ayn Rand and then apologize for ranting. I think that paradox would rip a chasm into the space time continuum which will surely destroy civilization as we know it. The rant is more than warranted.