- - Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Culture challenge of the week: Tax tyranny

Anxious and somber faces greet me as I step into the crowded waiting room. A sense of dread fills the air.

Men and women sit silently, clutching folders and envelopes, stacks of papers and piles of files. The fear in the air is so thick you can almost cut it with a knife. I join the morbid group as I slump into the nearest empty chair and wait for my turn to see THE ACCOUNTANT!

It’s tax time, and even though we go through the same depressing ritual year after year, it just doesn’t get any easier. If I think about it too long, I get really ticked off.

I’m angry that I am forced to hand over so many of my hard-earned dollars to a nameless, faceless bureaucracy where much of it is wasted; frustrated that someone else chooses who gets my money; and upset that I work hundreds of hours each year to pay for stuff I don’t want, don’t need and often find disgusting.

And to make matters worse — just like all those people sitting in all those waiting rooms across the country — I can’t even figure out how to figure out how much I owe the beast!

The system is so complex that I actually have to pay someone else to calculate it for me, and hope and pray that the accountant is educated about the intricacies of the tax code to get it right. Every time I see one of those advertisements by accounting firms claiming that they can pretty-much guarantee they will find errors in some other accountant’s rendering of my tax return, I get upset all over again. And not because I think they are lying, but because I know that it is true. The tax labyrinth is too complicated.

And the real kicker? When April 15 rolls around, the reality is that I have not yet made enough money this year to pay for the taxes I will have to pay next year. And most likely, neither have you.

Yep, that’s right. When you add up all the federal, state and local taxes, the average tax-paying American has to fork over, you must work all of January, all of February, all of March and nearly all of April just to pay your tax bill. That means you won’t make one penny to go toward feeding your family until around May.

Oh, and if I haven’t depressed you enough already, think about this: Even with all the taxes that decent, hard-working Americans like you pay, our nation is sinking deeper and deeper into debt so quickly that, unless the crazed spending is stopped, our entire economy will eventually collapse.

How to save your family: Become active in the tea party movement

You can’t count on Democrats to help you and your family, and you can’t count on all Republicans either. You have to start casting your vote for fiscal conservatives if we ever hope to end the madness.

And you’ve got to do more than just vote. You need to work hard to get decent, honest Americans to run for office who will help starve the beast that is our government. And you need to get involved now before the 2014 elections.

You can shrug your shoulders in despair, return to work tomorrow to continue paying your tax bill, and march blindly and helplessly into the great spending abyss as most Democrats and Republican RINOs suck more of your dollars and life away; or you can rise up and try to do something about it.

I’m proud to work alongside various groups in the tea party movement because I refuse to go silently into that dark night. And when I get discouraged, I just look in the faces of my three 20-something kids and know that if I quit, their freedom and financial futures are pretty much doomed.

The “tea party” is a general term that describes various grassroots gatherings composed of people just like you who want lower taxes, limited government and more freedom. They are in every state, and some are more organized than others. I work with several of them, but each one is doing a great job changing politics as usual in Washington. Many of these groups have “tea party” in their names (like Tea Party Patriots or Tea Party Express). Others (like FreedomWorks or Americans for Prosperity) do not because they work to support the local tea party activists in addition to having their own network of policy experts and boots on the ground.

The Democrats are desperately trying to discredit tea party activists and so is the establishment wing of the Republican Party. Why? These strange bedfellows have two things in common that they will guard at any cost — the flow of cash through their hands and the power to decide what happens to all of us.

But don’t let them fool you. Don’t let them disparage decent Americans who have had enough, who are speaking up, demanding better for their families and working hard to stop the madness.

Don’t something and let those who practice tax tyranny keep winning by default.

Remember, that dreaded waiting room will be waiting for you again next year. And when you head off to work tomorrow, every penny you earn will still go to The Man.

Haven’t you had enough?

• Rebecca Hagelin can be reached at rebecca@howtosaveyourfamily.com.

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