Monday, February 2, 2009

The View from Ventura

We tax all the others and pass the revenue on to you

Californian Pam Pecarich, an ex-tax policy analyst, writes in the Ventura County Star: "It is not a time to cut taxes further for the well-to-do — rates are at their lowest now in three decades — or cut spending programs for those who are suffering. It is time to show us all that government can work again for all the people." That must pass for analysis in Ventura.

Pam, could you be just a little more specific? And aren't there just two possible inferences from that? 1) Leave things the way they are, and 2) raise taxes and/or spending?

Sing it, Willie: "Run that by me one more time..."

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Are you going to keep your $500 tax credit if it passes? I am. I don't like myself for it but if I'll pick up a dime off the street I'll claim 500 bucks on my 1040. What are you going to do with yours? What kind of a difference will it make in your life? Will you buy health insurance? Probably not, isn't that going to be free anyway? Donate it to a charity? Whoa, let's not get carried away here. Apply it to cover your underwithholding? Maybe, but doesn't that kind of defeat the purpose? Me? My MasterCard, probably. MC won't notice or thank me but I did promise to pay them and I guess I should. They don't take RWs.

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Nobody takes Z-Bux anymore, either. Mr. Mugabe made it official that they can take foreign currency now. No one noticed. At the end two cans of soup and a loaf of bread cost a trillion new (less the ten zeroes) Z-Bux. Saw it on CNN so it must be true.

True story: I'm in Tbilisi, as you may know. Not that long ago, when the dollar was in its previous freefall, a vendor at the flea market asked me if I could pay in anything but US dollars. Man, if I'd only had some Z-Bux then. Are Ameri-Bux going down the same drain? Some people sure don't trust them.

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