The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective


Income taxes, oh well…

Hey everyone – its income tax time!  Hooray! 

Actually, our 2011 Income Tax return filing deadline is April 17th this year instead of the traditional April 15th.  Is that because of ObamaNomics?  Oh well.  

Does it ever seem to you that no matter how you complete your income tax return; no matter how much outside, expert advice you leverage; no matter what plans you put in place to lessen your tax impact next year, you still seem to be funding everything?  Are our elected officials standing on the sideline cheering as our tax returns are coming in?  Oh well. 

On the one hand, I greatly dislike the immense level of government spending that takes place today at the federal, state, county, city and even master association level.  The media reminds us of the tremendous waste that seems to occur every day; every where.  And during this election year?  Indescribable.  Oh well. 

On the other hand, when there is a natural disaster; when we hear of a scientific breakthrough funded by a government grant; or when we simply have a friend of family member in need and they receive financial or medical support from a social services program, we are happy we live in America, true? 

Income tax time is one point during the year when we get to add it all up.  Sometimes we like the resulting sum; other times we don’t.  And talk about “new math”! 

The Income Tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf has.

                             Will Rogers 

Question:  If I work from a home office; and my dog barks when the FedEx driver arrives; does she qualify as my receptionist – and can I write-off the cost of her dog food?  No?  Oh well. 

All in all, 2011 was a very good year for us. How about you?  I suppose it depends on how we measure “good”.  Filing income taxes forces us to look at our W-2; our 401k; our IRA; along with our mortgage interest; real estate taxes; and all of those other numbers the IRS wants us to know (and report).  That’s one way to measure “good” (or some years, not so good).  

When we look in the mirror, often much of our financial (and related income tax) pains are self-inflicted: 

More and more these days I find myself pondering on how to reconcile my net income with my gross habits.                                 

John Kirk Nelson

When we heard growing up that money isn’t everything, do we have the same perspective about it as adults?  Hopefully so.  Our top line income, even when reduced by taxes, still can be more than enough for a man that is easily contented.  Unfortunately, the itch of discontent sometimes influences us to spend more than our means.  

It’s not what we make that counts; it’s what we save.  Years ago this was called “net worth”.  Today, “line of credit” seems to have replaced the concept of having net worth.  And like our federal government, line of credit means “debt”; and debt is not the same as net worth.  Oh well. 

We are looking forward to 2012 – this will be our best year ever!  And we can stay in control of how we define “best” by following the guidance of the world renowned author and poet, Robert Lewis Stevenson: 

Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.                                 

And no – the seeds are not tax deductible.  Oh well. 


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