Tax Time!

Old Nunnery, Isle of Iona

Well. I’ve already filed and paid my taxes for 2010 (if you haven’t done yours yet, better hurry up!). As I’ve written elsewhere you know a bit about how I feel toward megacorp tax dodgers. I’m certainly no economic expert and don’t know a flip about the U.S. tax code except to say that something is horribly wrong.

The infrastructure that my—and your—tax dollars pay for benefits the common good of our nation. Where would we be without roads, bridges, schools, parks, environmental protection, utility lines, social safety nets, and a thousand other goods that we pay for through our hard earned income?

On the whole, I only use a minute portion of these things, but I do not mind my tax dollars going to support them. That’s what taxes are for. Megacorps use these things far more than you or I do. Without safe roads, bridges, harbors, etc. megacorps would not be able to ship their goods across the country or overseas. Perhaps we should let these tax dodgers build their own infrastructure. Wouldn’t that be grand? Well, probably not, but you get my point.

On another tax note: I ran across an article today at Sojourners by Shane Clairborne, who has written a letter to the IRS about his unwillingness to have his tax dollars go toward the military budget. This is something I’ve struggled with for a very long time. 30% of our tax dollars goes to support the military. I won’t tell you what my portion of that was for 2010, but it runs into four digits. I am conflicted about sending money to support something with which I am in total disagreement. Increasingly, the way we’ve found to solve our problems is through the use of military force. I believe any use of violence against another grieves the heart of Christ. It is as if Jesus’ death on the cross has absolutely no meaning for us anymore. Shane has guts.

I wonder where mine are?

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