Labor Day

Well, I’ll be laboring this Labor Day on my taxes again.  The ultimate deadline looms ahead in two weeks, and there is no more wiggle room to play.

I can’t help but think that a better way for the government to collect any taxes would be a sales tax. Pay as we go; pay as we purchase. Simple. Efficient. Everybody pays who participates in our economy.

Every wage-earner keeps 100 percent of their earned wages, too.  We choose to save or spend.  What’s right about that?

First, if we save more, we are more solvent, each of us.  Likely, we save in banks. Banks with more money to lend — especially community banks — lend to local businesses who grow their businesses.  And if that “rainy day” comes, we have reserves to weather the storm.

If we save more, we are voting with our dollars: Congress has to do a good job, or we will save our money, spend less, and slow down the economy as a result. We could “vote” with our spending/saving habits.  Congress would have no choice but to pay attention and listen to the voice of the people… right in the pocketbook of the government.

If we had more money, we would need less government assistance, easing the tax burden all around.  Smaller, more efficient government would be a boon for all of us.  And maybe even require less time in Washington for Congress, so that they could also live and work at jobs like the rest of us, at least part-time.  That would make them more understanding and responsive to the actual needs of their local people, and to the nation collectively.

If we spend more, we are saying Congress is on the right track. We rev up the economy with our purchases, which also fill up the government coffers with tax revenue.  Good times would equal more for all entities.  And, if government salted away a portion of the revenue for repaying the national debt and/or a “rainy day,” the whole country could relax more.

The question of who collects the sales tax is simple: turn the I.R.S. into a sales-tax collection agency.  So simple, so non-intrusive, less costly.

Well, that’s it for me on this Labor Day. The taxes I do have to account for stare at me.  I better get cracking.

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