No seriously. I realize it is a legally prosecutable obligation, and therefore an act of avoiding steep penalties and public embarrassment at any future confirmation hearings.
But in spite of the uproar over the GOP's "Tax Day Tea Parties," we do have constitutionally elected representation for the first time in almost a decade. Well, the representation is at half strength in Minnesota (thanks Norm), but it is representation nonetheless.
Each year, Joe and I pay our taxes with a little nod to the Pell Grants that got us through college and a great deal of hope for the future of our country; hope for better public transit, a protected environment, and responsive emergency services at the very least.
Now, with two little girls, we are depending on the current administration to improve the nature of health care, public education, higher education, and, of course, win the pirate war.
I spent the morning wistfully listening to the bird songs outside while busily entertaining my sick girls. We spent a good deal of time at the kitchen sink, inspired by the egg-dying last week to mix colors in different cups. It was like magic...
Blue plus yellow? Green!
Red plus yellow? Orange!
Blue plus yellow plus green plus red plus orange? Drinkable! ... Oh wait...
I'm running a preschool for them constantly, and I don't want these gains to be lost when they start public school in a year or two (yikes!). So I pay my taxes... I stay informed... and I hope.
I do have some compassion for the disenfranchised GOP. I was much less hopeful paying taxes under the Bush administration. I still had hope... and, yes Bidden, a sense of patriotic duty. But it was anemic. The expectations were low (and consistently unmet).
Today though, the expectations are high, and the potential for a spike in my cynicism and a sharp turn to the libertarian party a few years down the road is real.
But for now we hope... We work, in our varied ways... We earn... We pay our taxes...
It sounds like my sentiments are in line with most Americans, according to Joan Walsh's post on Salon.com today:
Just in time for this day of massive protest, Gallup released a poll showing that 61 percent of Americans believe the income taxes they paid this year are "fair," and more Americans now say the amount they pay is "just right" than "too high" -- one of the most pro-tax outcomes since Gallup began polling on this question in 1956. Great timing, Tea Partiers! Way to have your fingers on the nation's pulse.