By: Claire Cooper Black
“Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you” ~ Pericles
Pericles died in 409 BC. But this statement has to be one of the most profound statements ever made. Politics dictates about 95% of your daily life, maybe more. Everything you touch or do, is, has or will be taxed or regulated in some form or fashion.
You are probably saying to yourself, that’s not true. Stop and think about it. If you are sitting in a chair reading this column, the chair you purchased had sales tax attached to it. For that chair to be manufactured there were all kinds of taxes and regulations imposed on the manufacturing and transportation of that chair to the store where you purchased it. Not to mention the property tax which the manufacturer, the transportation company and the retail stores have to pay to run their businesses.
I’m still trying to find one thing in my life that hasn’t been taxed at some point. So far I can’t think of one. Basically, if you are breathing, you are being taxed, regulated, fined or paying a fee.
So when politicians say we aren’t being taxed enough, I just shake my head. And by shaking my head, I have paid sales tax on the shampoo to wash the hair on my head. My parents paid property taxes which paid for local schools so that I can read or understand when politicians speak about raising taxes.
Can we live without taxes? No. And I understand that. But for goodness sakes, where’s the limit?
When I ask people to name me ONE thing that hasn’t been taxed in their life I often get the response, hugging my child. You paid sales tax for bringing that child into the world. The hospital got charged taxes for medical items which helped to bring that child into the world. The medical items got regulated out the wazoo and had to charge sales tax on their products. That tax was passed on to you when you paid the hospital bill. So try again.
By not taking an interest in or having an understanding of politics, you are costing yourself more money whether you are paying an income tax or not. So when a politician brags about raising taxes and increasing government control and people actually applaud this, well, as another old saying goes, “there’s a sucker born every minute”. But I’m going to update that phrase with “there’s a taxpayer born every minute” and that makes politicians very happy!
I will add this disclaimer. The politicians I personally know don’t like paying all the taxes either!