Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Why do West Virginia drivers insist on riding up your bumper on two lane roads, following closely enough that you can see the bugs in their grills in your rear view mirror? One person told me it was because they wanted to show you what they were going to have for lunch. Another told me the drivers were probably independent suppliers for local McDonald’s franchises. I don’t know who to believe.
So here we are on Tax Day and I feel sort of lost, because we broke a long standing tradition. Normally it’s a race to the Post Office to beat the midnight mailing deadline, but this year we filed early. I’m going to miss the adrenaline rush.
While millions of Americans dread tax season and April 15th in particular, if you’re Dick Cheney you have a big smile on your face. Last year the V.P. pulled in a tax refund in the neighborhood of $22 million. The advice I’d give to Mr. Cheney is to increase the number of exemptions he’s claiming on his W4, in order to reduce the amount of Federal withholding tax taken out of his bi-weekly pay check. Obviously the White House Payroll office is taking out way too much money.
And lets congratulate all the folks at Turbo Tax as they celebrate the company’s 147th anniversary of assisting people in finding every loophole and deduction written into the Federal Tax Codes. This year’s special software edition has a glowing testimony from, you guessed it, Vice President Dick Cheney.
Turbo Tax, in case you weren’t aware, was the brain child of Iowa farmer Elmer Dunedorf, who founded the company in an empty grain silo in 1861 following Congressional passage of the Revenue Act of 1861. The company saw further expansion in 1862 when reform measures introduced a 3 per cent tax on incomes up to $10,000, and a 5 per cent rate for incomes over that amount. Luckily for the little guy, anyone making less than $600 was exempt from paying taxes. Elmer, who by the way is Vice President Dick Cheney’s third cousin twice removed, was one of the few people who actually built a better mousetrap and people have been beating their way to Elmer’s silo ever since.