After a long and frustrating day of baling hay (too wet, too dry), my husband goes to town for some beers. There he usually runs into an assortment of fellows who will invariably give him the latest shocking examples of evil government doings gleaned from somewhere in the Fat Cat News.
“The IRS is gonna charge our athletes $9000 for winning a gold medal!” a wizened fellow exclaims.
“That ain’t right. Gud dam gubmint ” grumbles a guy in a green cap as he slams his beer glass down on the bar, “Why they are fighting for us over there.”
“Get the ropes! String ’em up”, two more guys yell out as the crowd now becomes tense and restless, grumbling about lack of good swinging trees because of the gd tree huggers.
Now in most Westerns, this is the point where some level headed guy, usually goes and gets the Marshall. But what happened here is that my level headed husband says that he’s going to go and find his wife with the I Pad.
(Much grumbling and muttering about foreigners, terrorists and Californians).
Armed to the hilt with I Pad and I Phone, I stride into the saloon and take a seat at the bar. Yes, it’s Google/Bing/Duck Duck Go to the rescue.
Yes, I discovered that some guy from Yahoo! News has ferreted out a story from that fount of wisdom “The Washington Standard”, and Yaaaa! Hooo! It’s a gooder!
The story is from some guy named Chris Chase who breathlessly (well, I think it sounds breathless even though I’m reading it and not listening to it) relates that our thoughtful friends at “Americans for Tax Reform” have determined that the Olympic Committee gives out rewards for Olympic medals with the gold winner getting $25,000, silver at $15,000, and bronze at $10,000. That means that fresh young thing, high schooler Missy Franklin, will have to pay $8,986 in taxes and that Timothy Geithner himself will be there to literally take it out of her pockets, although it will have to be when she puts her warm up suit on because her swimsuit is pocket less. This Chase guy is outraged and asks why the IRS can’t make an exception for these freedom fighters just like they do for Military members in a combat zone.
Say, what? I think this guy just jumped the shark. Who would compare swimming in a pool to a combat zone ? (unless he’s confused and thinks that the swimming pool shares the same field as the folks doing the Triathlon. Come to think of it, that would be a hell of a Olympic competition and more in line with what each nation would really like to do to their rivals in other countries.) Yes, who in their right mind….Oh…wait a minute. Seems like Senator Marco Rubio said on Wednesday that he would propose a bill in the Senate to exempt our fighting fencers and bikini beach volleyball players from having to pay taxes on their winnings honorariums. But they still could deduct their swords and their bikinis/uniforms.
It’s at this point that somebody with some common sense and basic math skills raises their hand and says, “But Miss Bloemendal, I believe that with a good accountant with all those deductions, little Missy and the adorable Gabby Douglas will probably end up paying little taxes although probably still more than Mitt Romney, Barack Obama, and members of Congress including Marco Rubio.”
“Thank you, Jimmy Olson,” I say and wonder why I am now in Gotham and not in Dodge City.
As the fellows drift back to their places at the bar, funny how most of the crowd is not all that pleased about the actual facts being pointed out to them. Shoot, now what are they gonna do? Now who can they think about stringing up?
“Hey,” I say, “I think you guys are right about one thing. There is something really screwed up with our tax codes. If you want to exempt somebody because of saving lives and freedoms then what about our doctors and nurses who save lives every day? What about teachers who do battle every day with savage youngsters and viscous teens? What about the plumbers and janitors who wrestle with crap all day? What about each and every one of us who have listen to garbage from the corporate news and corrupt politicians?”
“What about bringing back tariffs? Or returning to something like the Greenbacks in the Civil War or the Continentals in the War of Independence? Print up some money but only use it to build schools and railways and bridges. Use it to fund a National health care plan. Don’t use it to make bombs or give it to people in other countries. If we are going to get all nationalistic and misty eyed about kids doing back flips on something the size of my deck railing, then spend money here. Make the money stay in the U.S.A! U.S.A! U.S.A!”
As I climbed off the soapbox, the gang just stared at me. Then somebody shouted, “Let’s hear it for the gal with I Pad. She’s brought us something to think about.”
Well, that’s my fantasy anyway. Didn’t happen. But today my husband will go in after work and let them know what the real story was. And that’s a start.