Home
In this issue
April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review April 10, 2006 / 12 Nissan, 5766

Taxing quotations

By Tom Purcell


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I found something on the IRS Web site I never expected to see: quotations from great minds on taxes.

The first two agitated me:

"Taxes are what we pay for civilized society.'' — Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., U.S. Supreme Court justice

"The power of taxing people and their property is essential to the very existence of government.'' — James Madison, U.S. president

Hey, fellows, I don't mind paying taxes for a civilized society. It's paying for the uncivilized part that grates on me. And I'm happy for the existence of our government, but, goodness, why does its existence have to be so big?

Here is a telling quotation from Frederick the Great, an 18th-century Prussian king:

"No government can exist without taxation. This money must necessarily be levied on the people; and the grand art consists of levying so as not to oppress.''

Yes, Freddy, levying without oppressing is a grand art — much the way it is an art for a loan shark, while collecting interest, to break all five fingers without harming the wrist.

Two of our thinkers, in their effort to be profound, end up sounding absurd:

"Like mothers, taxes are often misunderstood, but seldom forgotten.'' — Lord Bramwell, 19th century English jurist

"To tax and to please, no more than to love and to be wise, is not given to men." — Edmund Burke, 18th century Irish political philosopher and British statesman

Hey, Brammy, my dear sweet mother may be misunderstood and I'll never forget her, but I don't remember the government ever bringing me milk and cookies after clearing out my bank account.

And if somebody can explain to me what the heck Burke is trying to say, the first beer is on me.

Three of our thinkers make great sense, though:

"The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax." — Albert Einstein

"Taxation WITH representation ain't so hot, either." — Gerald Barzan, humorist

A tax loophole is "something that benefits the other guy. If it benefits you, it is tax reform.'' — Russell B. Long, U.S. senator

Ah, now we're getting to the thick of it. Our tax code is the hardest thing in the world to understand. It was made that way because our representatives, seeking favor and dough, slipped in gobs of loopholes for their buddies.

Our government calls this "tax reform," and it is the reason our tax code now runs, according to the Cato Institute, 61,000 pages in length and takes the average American nearly 30 hours to comply with.

One quotation made me sad:

"Next to being shot at and missed, nothing is really quite as satisfying as an income tax refund." — F.J. Raymond, humorist

Well, F.J., next to being shot at and hit, nothing is quite as unpleasant as the sizable checks I've had to write every year since I became self-employed in 1993.

The concept of taxes agitates me so much, particularly this week as I am buried in a pile of receipts, that I was drawn to the more humorous quotations:

"I am proud to be paying taxes in the United States. The only thing is - I could be just as proud for half the money." — Arthur Godfrey

"People who complain about taxes can be divided into two classes: men and women." — Unknown

"The income tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf." — Will Rogers

The IRS is quick to point out that it in no way endorses any of these quotations. I don't fault it for being cautious. Enforcing our incomprehensible laws, rules and regulations is the hardest job in the world. The IRS is often blamed for the mess that Congress made.

Still, I'm sure the IRS wants to keep a distance from this:

"Where there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income." — Plato

Well, then. I guess tax woes have been around for a while.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on JWR Contributor Tom Purcell's column, by clicking here. To visit his web site, click here.


ARCHIVES

© 2006, Tom Purcell

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles