Thursday, February 18, 2010

Taxes? Planes? Terrorism or misguided patriotism?

In case you haven't seen it, earlier today a small plane was flown into an office building in Austin, TX. Intentionally, it would seem. Supposedly (and, of course, this is all circumstantial, but looks pretty convincing - unless the guy pulled off what another guy failed to do last year when he put his plane on autopilot and let it crash after he bailed out) the pilot set his house on fire and then hopped into his plane and flew it into an IRS building. (Note: after spending the evening working on my own return, ... nah, better not go there, eh?) Again, supposedly, he left this note on the website of a company of his.

Question is, is it terrorism? Or misguided patriotism? Lloyd Doggett (a politician from Austin) says it's "domestic terrorism." Of course, already there are fan pages popping up on Facebook. The question, really, is how to classify this act. Obviously the guy got his headlines, made people take notice (posthumously, assuming he did not bail out of the plane). But he also endangered lives - and, despite his feelings about the gov't and the IRS, I'm pretty sure that none of the people in that office had anything really to do with the issues which grieved him. They are just employees of the IRS (or, perhaps, unfortunately timed visitors). Then again, were the governors of the colonies at the time of the revolution just employees of Britain?

I do not condone his actions. I would like to do away with the confusing tax codes and perhaps move to a more sales-tax based economy (sorry, dad; but you'd still have a job, I'm sure - people will still need accountants, just not for their "income tax" since that wouldn't exist). As a friend of mine suggested, that would increase federal revenue from all the illegally obtained monies being spent on commercial goods - currently, illegally obtained monies are (obviously) not reported as income, and thus not taxed. However, if that illegally obtained money buys a Leer jet, or a Ferrari, well, that money now has been taxed. Yeah, you'd still have to have employers report your anticipated annual earnings so that the gov't could pre-bate sales tax to lower income families (i.e., they'd get a check or checks from the gov't to help offset the increased cost of things if they made below a certain income level - at least, I think that's what Fair Tax is advocating to offset the increased cost of goods for lower-income families). But why not give it a shot? I mean, Florida does just fine without any income tax; if Florida can survive without income tax, why not the rest of the USA?

Well, this didn't quite turn out to be what I'd intended when I sat down to blog this evening... guess I'm just tired from working on my taxes all evening (and I'm still not done; I don't have the interest statements from my bank, and apparently they no longer offer the ability to print them from their online account access, so I guess I'm going to have to call tomorrow to try to get at least the info and new copies sent out - speaking of which, I'm still waiting for a re-requested copy of my mortgage interest statement that I also did not receive). And I'm going to owe (federal), so it's not like I'm even getting anything out of all this work (well, looks like a state refund, but that won't offset the amount owed to Uncle Sam).

Ah, well... at least I'm employed - I guess I should be thankful for the burden of having to fill out a 1040, eh? Too bad my oldest child no longer qualifies for the child tax credit... that would have offset my tax liability quite nicely, that extra $1k credit... oh well.
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Christy said...

I don't think his actions could be called terrorism. He was taking personal revenge. There is a difference, don't you think? Of course no matter what you call it, it must be Bush's fault.

Tony M said...

"must be Bush's fault" - funny; then again, that has to be forthcoming from someone or another, doesn't it? :)

Marie said...

I read his rant. That was just sad. Where was his sense of personal responsiblity? He seemed to live a life where things happened TO him not BY him. I think that would drive anyone nuts.