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Week of: April 8, 2001

Taxpayer's Lament: Let Me Keep More*

by F.R. Duplantier

Think of all the things you could afford, if you didn't have to turn 40 percent of your income over to the government!

Of my annual earnings Uncle Sam will extract
Fully two-fifths, as a matter of fact.
That's quite a large portion, but what's got me burned:
I'll never see that much in service returned.
And who can depend in his golden old days
On the pittance that Social Security pays?

What would I do with a few extra grand?
For such a sweet surplus, here's what I've got planned.
I'll feast on filets and heave out the hash;
I'll chuck my old chinos and dress with panache.
I'll make a deposit on the decent-size house
I'd love to provide for my children and spouse.
(If we just had the money, if only we could,
We'd much rather live in a nice neighborhood.)
Uncle Sam takes too much of the money I've earned.
He must have forgotten what the British Crown learned.

Life would be rosy for the first time in years:
If I were in the black, instead of arrears.
I'd pay off the balance on each credit card:
Visa, Discover, and Montgomery Ward.
I'd pay off the note on my Chevy "Classique"
And buy me a car that's not an antique.
I'd undo the default at my old alma mater
And attend our homecoming a persona who's grata.
Of what would be left -- a handsome amount --
I'd put every cent in a savings account!

Well, not every cent -- there's so much to do
With a few grand a year, and for many years too!
I might make provision, in case of disaster,
To ensure that yours truly remains his own master.
I might purchase a policy, term or whole life,
Benefitting my children, grandchildren, and wife.
I might line up a health plan that covers things dental
(Even more comprehensive, in case I go mental).

There are other investments I'd make with each grand
If my after-tax income exceeded demand.
I'd buy stocks and bonds with my yearly rebates,
Rare books, stamps and coins, and collectible plates.
I'd invest in myself, maybe learn a new skill,
Some trade to fall back on when I'm over the hill.
I'd invest in my children, to help them excel,
And then, in my dotage, they might treat me well.

With a few extra grand, I'd no longer be penniless.
For once in my life, I could afford to be generous.
I could give to my church a sizable sum,
Or set up an annual scholarship fund.
I could sponsor a mission and some needy child,
Or save some rare species at risk in the wild.
I could hire some musicians to play in the park
Or pay pyrotechnicians to light up the dark.
I could spend my own money however I please!
Why should I scrimp to put tyrants at ease?


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