Monday, April 6, 2015

Had Enough Tax-Time Fun?

If you’re like me, you’ve spent many hours and a lot of money over the last few weeks accounting for every dollar you’ve dealt with over the last year. If you own a business, you’ve also done the same thing four other times during the year. I should think you’d be in the market for a better way to get things done.
When you go to buy bread or to the circus, the grocer and the venue owner don’t ask you to account for the money you don’t give them. The grocer doesn’t force you to buy mopheads or gossip magazines, and the circus master doesn’t tell you whom you may and may not invite to parties at your home.
If Auto Zone and NAPA were competing for customers for their roads, I don’t think they’d have speed traps or demand money from people who park with the driver’s side of the car next to the curb. If ADT or State Farm were my first and only line of protection against burglars and terrorists—yours might be ADS or GEICO, and chances are they’d be working with my guys on some things—I would expect them to make sure I didn’t let my three-year-old kill his mother with my shotgun. If Walmart or Lt. Uhura down the street ran the nearest school, they would get my money only if I wanted to give it to them.
And for sure none of them would make dealing with them so difficult that I’d need to hire an accountant to get me through the paperwork.

As sure as ends never justify means, such a society would be better than what we’ve got, let alone the one we’re headed for. I’m not sure how to get there from here, but there’s no point finding out as long as you’re happy to have the taxman help himself to your money, your time, and your private life.