Sunday, November 11, 2007

Taxes…The Beatles were right again!
What do the Beatles and Maryland’s current special legislative session have in common?

As a Beatles’ fan for more than 40 years, it never ceased to amaze me how much insight into life these young men from Liverpool showed in some of their songs. Remember how the song “Eleanor Rigby” so eloquently expressed the haunting pain of loneliness?

Well, they knew much about government and taxes as well. Here are the lyrics written by George Harrison in angry response to the abusive taxes in Great Britain all those years ago.
Let me tell you How it will be.
There's one for you,Nineteen for me, '
Cause I'm the taxman.
Yeah, I'm the taxman.
Should five percent Appear too small,
Be thankful I don't Take it all.
'Cause I'm the taxman.
Yeah, I'm the taxman. I
f you drive a car,I'll tax the street.
If you drive to city,I'll tax your seat.
If you get too cold,I'll tax the heat.I
f you take a walk,I'll tax your feet.
'Cause I'm the taxman.
Yeah, I'm the taxman.
Don't ask me what I want it for,
If you don't want to pay some more.
'Cause I'm the taxman.
Yeah, I'm the taxman.
And my advice to Those who die.
Declare the pennies On your eyes.
'Cause I'm the taxman.
Yeah, I'm the taxman,
And you're working for no one but me.
This brings me to the current special session of Maryland’s legislature. This session was called because of the “crisis” of a huge budget deficit of $1.6 billion facing the state next year.
[These things are always portrayed as crises, which demand urgent drastic measures. Were there no accountants around when the legislature passed all these spending bills to warn them they were spending more money than the state would take in?]
Now we are told drastic measures are needed. What is their creative response to this “crisis?” More taxes! Income taxes are going up, sales tax is going up, car titling tax is going up, and cigarette tax is going up. [Here’s my prediction for the not-to-distant future: when people stop smoking in large numbers, another budget crisis will cause the desperate search for new taxes to replace lost income from cigarette tax.]
Harrison perfectly caught the attitude of politicians and taxes: “don’t ask me what I want it for if you don’t want to pay some more…you’re working for no one but me.” Enough is enough.
Even though Maryland is effectively a one-party state, I urge you to take a hard look at the candidates you vote to send to Annapolis. If we send enough political leaders with a heart to serve the people, maybe we can change the attitude of the Taxman.

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