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Fun on Friday: What Have You Done for Me Mr. Taxman?

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I have to confess, I’m not really feeling particularly fun this Friday. This past week was tax week.

And taxes aren’t fun.

A lot of you might not even realize that tax day was July 15. The government pushed the date back from April 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic. So, we got a little reprieve in the spring. But as they say, nothing is certain but death and taxes. The grim reaper and the taxman always cometh eventually.

But if you got a refund, you probably went ahead and filed so you could get that nice check from Uncle Sam. I did not get a refund. Therefore, I put off filing until the last minute. That means I had to write a big fat check to the IRS on Wednesday. My sour mood has persisted throughout the week.

I keep thinking about all of the things I could have done with that money. I could have put a nice payment down on a new car. I could have upgraded my hockey gear. I could have taken a nice trip to the Caribbean. I can just see myself sitting on a sandy beach with an umbrella drink listening to reggae music.

Speaking of reggae music – that’s something that is fun. You can write the darkest lyrics imaginable, set them to a reggae beat and viola – you have a happy upbeat song. You can be be-bopping along to a reggae song and suddenly realize you’re singing about genocide in Rowanda. It’s kinda weird.

Here’s a real-life example – a reggae song about taxes. It’s by Lucky Dube and it’s called “Tax Man.” The lyrics are pretty poignant too. You can read them at the end of the post.

Basically, he asks the question, “What have you done for me, Mr. Taxman?”

Well, if you ask me – not a damn thing.

OK, so we get roads. But if you’ve driven through Ohio lately, you’ll quickly come to the conclusion that if that’s the best case to be made for taxes, the whole argument falls apart. Seriously, it’s amusing to me that some people think roads are the crowning achievement of government – as if without a bunch of politicians, nobody would be able to figure out how to lay a ribbon of concrete from point A to point B.

Some people go as far as to claim that taxation is the price we pay to live in a “civilized” society. But given the fact that the vast majority of our tax dollars fund weapons to break things and kill people, I kind of question that notion as well.

On the plus side, we do get Donald Trump’s Twitter account. At least that provides some entertainment.

Seriously though – nobody likes taxes. Even progressives who sing the glories of taxation do everything they can to avoid paying them. I’m always amused when billionaires like Warren Buffet and Ray Dalio start yammering about raising taxes on the rich. They do realize nobody is stopping them from paying more, right? I mean, you can make a voluntary donation to the US Treasury Seriously. There’s a link for that. I’m not going to bother to hunt it down right now because I’m pretty sure you aren’t going to run out and donate to the IRS.

Anyway, as my mother-in-law often says, “It is what it is.” Whether we like it or not, the taxman cometh. The best we can do is try to minimize his take as much as possible.

There is some good news on that front. You can avoid IRS reporting requirements on precious metals, even on large-scale purchases. You just have to know the rules. SchiffGold’s Guide to Tax-Free Gold and Silver Buying provides the information you need to navigate the complex world of IRS reporting. You can download it free RIGHT HERE.
In the meantime, enjoy a little reggae music and have a good weekend!

I pay my gardener to clean up my garden
I pay my doctor to check out da other ting
I pay my lawyer to fight for my rights
And I pay my bodyguard to guard my body
There’s only one man I pay
But I don’t know what I’m paying for
I’m talking about the taxman
I’m talking about the taxman
I’m talking about the taxman
What have you done for me lately
Mr Taxman
What have you done for me lately
Mr Taxman
What have you done for me lately
Mr Taxman
What have you done for me lately
Mr Taxman
You take from the rich, take from the poor
You even take from me, can’t understand it now
I pay for the police to, err…I don’t know why
‘Cause if my dollar was good enough
There wouldn’t be so much crime in the streets
They tell me you’re a fat man
And you always take and never give
What have you done for me lately
Mr Taxman

Fun on Friday is a weekly SchiffGold feature. We dig up some of the off-the-wall and off-beat stories relating to precious metals and share them with you – with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Click here to read other posts in this series.

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About The Author

Michael Maharrey is the managing editor of the SchiffGold blog, and the host of the Friday Gold Wrap Podcast and It's Your Dime interview series.
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