Monday, February 23, 2009

Taxing My Patience

     I don't know if you know this, Company, but if you watch the right TV channels or you listen to the right radio stations at the right time you will end up hearing tons and tons of commercials for law and accounting firms that offer to settle your massive tax debt with the IRS for what I can only assume is a substantial fee.  The one that I see the most is Roni Lynn Deutsch, who must be making a pile because with each year that passes she actually manages to look more healthy, fit, and tan.  I assume that this is because she is taking longer and more luxurious vacations in more exotic places each year.  But I could be wrong.  In her credit she at least gets a new commercial every time tax season rolls around, so I don't have to watch the same lame one that I had to watch last year.  Anyway, every commercial is pretty much the same thing: Oh my, we had gigantic drowning tax debt that was ruining our lives, and whatever company settled our debt for pennies on the dollar.  We owed $640,000 and we ended up paying only $20,000.  I have so many problems with this that it makes me want to start shaking until I fall over.
     I think that the bulk of my problems have to do with just how one goes about accumulating that kind of debt with the IRS.  I mean, I haven't been around this world all that long, and I am certainly no accountant.  I mean, the one year I did my own taxes I ended up owing to the state and that's NEVER happened before.  But anyway, despite all that, I have been a working member of society for many years now and taxes always seemed pretty simple to me.  You make money, you give some of it to the government so they can, you know build roads and buy uniforms for national park rangers and whatnot.  If you have a mortgage payment of a business expense you can write it off and get less taxes.  Seems pretty simple to me.  It seems like a pretty direct relationship to me: you tell them about yourself, they tell you how much to pay, and then you pay that much.
     Is any of this registering with you, Company?  I mean, here's the deal:  You have to make a concerted effort to rack up a quarter of a million dollars in IRS tax debt.  And you have to have scratch to do it.  Because you can't pay more in taxes than you gain.  So if you owe ten, twenty, even fifty thousand dollars to the IRS and you need to call Roni Lynn Deutsch that means that over a course of time you've gained at least that much in money or property.  And if you making that kind of income I would hope that you have an accountant or a lawyer working for you or that you are a competent person when it comes to money.  So to me that says that you were probably doing what you were doing on purpose.  In which case I am stunned that the IRS would let you off with a slap on the wrist.  Because, for all the shit he pulled, the only thing they ever got Al Capone for was tax evasion.  So they should get you, too.  Maybe old Al should have called Roni.

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