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Out of sight, out of mind?

On another site, there's been a very passionate debate about the proposed small business tax increase. The issue came up again of the gigantic proportion of people who don't actually pay taxes, in that they pay them out, but get most or all back at the end of the year - the people for whom their payroll deductions are more like a Christmas Club where they're just putting money in there to save it for shopping in spring. If you asked them, most couldn't even tell you a dollar amt of how much of their check went to federal taxes each month. And they also couldn't tell you, once they get that refund, how much they didn't get back (the amount actually paid).

The idea was proposed that this automatic payroll deduction/refund cycle keeps people from actually understanding and appreciating how much of their money actually goes to the government. Instead, your federal taxes should be a monthly bill you have to pay, just like your utilities. It should involve physically making a payment, and being aware of how much that payment is as it leaves your checking acct.

Would that make people more aware? Would it make them less likely to insist people who make more than them should have to pay more, if they actually had to experience the process of writing that check the way a business owner does?

Answer Question

Asked by NotPanicking at 1:41 PM on Jul. 3, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 51 (421,174 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • Possibly. I know dh and I are painfully aware how much he pays in taxes (he's self employed). Those checks are very painful to write....

    Then again, they might just bitch more about how much they have to pay, and insist that no one else pays as much as they do. Then they would still insist that people making more than them should pay even more.

    Answer by anime_mom619 at 2:42 PM on Jul. 3, 2011

  • I agree with anime. Also, you will get a percentage of the taxpayers that will just fail to pay their tax bill, just like they fail to pay their credit card bills. I think if people could just not pay you would have more people opting to fore-go the federal tax payment. They sure would complain when they ended up with fraud charges against them though. And lets not forget when they would normally get a refund.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 4:51 PM on Jul. 3, 2011

  • I thought this question was going to be about hidin' Biden. And I doubt it would make a difference. It would just encourage the class warfare even more.

    Answer by Carpy at 7:08 PM on Jul. 3, 2011

  • I don't think they should raise taxes on small businesses, however I do think they should take away all the loopholes, tax breaks/cuts from huge corporations and give some of them to small businesses.

    Answer by meriana at 9:30 PM on Jul. 3, 2011

  • I think it would make some people more aware. I also think a lot of people would just skip paying.

    It amazes me how people will jump on the taxing bandwagon. Taxes affect the cost of goods. I recently raised prices at my dry cleaners. I printed up some cards listing the 3 things that caused tax, new tax & increase in the state's minimum wage...I also listed the names and phone #''s of our state reps. The cards were a hit..enough so that I got a call from one of the rep's staff asking me to stop giving them out.

    Answer by yourspecialkid at 10:44 AM on Jul. 4, 2011

  • I think it would definitely make people more aware of what they're paying, but i also think it would result in too many delinquent payments & that would hash out a can of worms...

    Answer by samurai_chica at 7:27 PM on Jul. 4, 2011

  • It might make them more aware but it won't change their feelings about how much those people pay

    Answer by itsmesteph11 at 1:51 AM on Jul. 5, 2011

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