Wouldn’t this be the most opportune time to push through a new, non-income-based tax reform… and eliminate the IRS entirely or alter their purpose and make them a collection agency for a national, retail sales tax?

The I.R.S. under scrutiny and investigation today is like looking at an iceberg from the surface of the ocean.  More abuse and potential for harm will be found below what is visible today.

But the whole situation begs other questions:  Why does the I.R.S. exist at all?  Why does America tax its people based on income?  Is any income tax even needed?

Imagine the I.R.S. as an agency for collecting a sales tax — specifically a national, retail sales tax — instead of income taxes.  Imagine that every time you or your neighbor purchased whatever they desired, aside from food and shelter, they contributed to America’s well-being by paying a simple, painless sales tax.

ALL Democrats, ALL Republicans and all other party members would pay the tax.  Congressional leaders and Presidents-elect would pay the tax.  No one would be exempt, and no loopholes would exist.

ALL wage-earners and productive members of our society would keep 100% of what they earn in their paychecks.  They would be able to determine and decide better what to keep in savings for future expenses, and what to spend.

ALL wealthy individuals would contribute without exception, because purchases would trigger the tax.  Wealthy corporations would also pay the tax on all retail purchases, yet they would market to a public that had more discretionary income to buy their goods and services.

In fact, anyone traveling inside America would also pay the tax on purchases: criminals, tourists, visitors… all purchases trigger the sales tax.  Every time. And why not? America has shelled out more foreign aid to more countries over more time than any other nation in history.

It is time that ALL Americans pay a national, retail sales tax — and NO income tax — for the benefit of all of America.

The time for a bright idea in tax reform, a reformed I.R.S., is now.

© Ron Kule, 2010,2012. All Rights Reserved.  Any copy, reproduction or unauthorized use of these contents without written permission of the copyright owner,  is a violation of all applicable copyright laws.  Permission may be obtained through KuleBooksLLC@gmail.com.


Dad Died. Farewell, Dad.

A great whooshing, sucking sound roared into my ears and filled my head.  An emissary of the family just informed me that Dad has died.

We siblings, the eight of us, knew this day was coming but not exactly when. He died at 6:45 A.M. on Sunday, May 5, Cinco de Mayo… Margaritas annually from now on!

Dad had been sick. The gangrene in his left foot was spreading, the result of a chafing, rubbing piece of his left moccasin that went undetected until it was too late. Such a small thing to take down a giant of a man.

Adding insult to injury for him and to the rest of us, the doctors said, “He’s no longer a ‘qualified candidate for surgery’.” My brother, also an M.D., concurred. Dad’s fate was sealed.

As if he was running for office, I thought, while I grabbed the morphine that he might need for the pain from the outstretched hand of the hospice attendant.

That’s not good enough, not for my Dad! I thought as the initial numbness wore off and I confronted emotions that commingled with my intelligence. What the hell… ?

But I had seen the black toe, which looked like a charred ember, half-knowing in that moment that Dad would have no way out from this other than death. I postulated an easy exit for him, knowing that he was not his body and that he would find another lifetime quickly, whether he knew it or not.

One wonders how his parent will die; now I knew.  It was like a body-slam but a quiet one. The fatality of the prognosis was numbing: this was it. Lights Out for Dad had raised its inevitable head and shown itself for all who looked.

We had been down this road before when Mom died. Her death was by cancer, and she just plain wore out from fighting it for years; fighting for life, fighting illness; fighting from the husband who was not the same fun-loving man she married over 50 years ago. She stopped fighting, gave up and died. Mom died before Dad did, and he always regretted that.

1944: Dad on the left, my future Mom, her Mom and her brother

1944: Dad on the left, my future Mom, her Mom and her brother

In the end, we all simply give up the last of our dreams in order to pass away from the current lifetime and move into the next one, knowingly or not; remembering or not.

My sister — the one that each of us turns to for information about other family members when we’re interested — informed me that Dad is gone.  Though we had prepared ourselves for this phone call, thinking we had done enough for this moment’s arrival, we cried anyway.

“You only get one father each lifetime,” I told her as I hugged her, letting the vacuum of his departure draw both of us into mixed emotions. She heard me say it, but her belief, that you only go around once, clashed with my understanding that we live many lifetimes.

Anyway, of course, we cried. And we’ll cry at the funeral, despite what our heads — mere minds over matter — tell us.  In the end, the heart rules and measures the depth of its consolation in teardrops.

No matter how we go on from here, Dad has finally left the building.

The funeral Mass is Saturday, 72 hours away.

I need a nap.