I always pay my federal income taxes on time. I do not mind paying the taxes so much as I despise the way the federal government misuses our tax dollars. I do not believe that I am smarter or better than any of my fellow American citizens. However, my maternal grandfather grew up on a farm in Western Georgia and he along with his nine other brothers were poor. My grandfather, along with his nine brothers, went to college and my grandfather along with his nine brothers all obtained doctorate degrees. My grandfather’s brothers would be my great uncles. Two of my great uncles had doctorates in divinity. Three had M.D. degrees in various fields. My grandfather obtained his doctorate in Latin and foreign languages. The remaining great uncles obtained degrees in dentistry.
My mother was my grandfather’s only daughter. So it is understandable that my mother strongly encouraged me to attend college. Over time, I obtained five college and university degrees.
My second graduate degree was a degree in business administration ( MBA ). To obtain my MBA Degree, I had to take one graduate course in graduate accounting and one graduate course in federal tax law and a lot of other courses. I mention this because for the past nine years I have paid a qualified accountant to create the labyrinthine and arcane form that I must file yearly with my wife known as the 1040 Tax Form. I use an accountant because the 1040 Form has become so complex that I can not complete this form by myself in spite of having a graduate degree in business.
But federal taxes are not the only taxes that I have to pay. Today I opened a letter mailed to me by the Volusia County Taxing authority. A county tax form is relatively simple compared to the federal 1040 Form. Like the federal form, there are areas on the county tax form that I consider fair and reasonable. Also, there are areas that that are not just in my view.
Having sought public office several times and having been elected to my local city council, I learned how local taxation operates and basic rules and regulations for the preparation of city and county budgets. After reading and studying my “2019 Notice of Proposed Property Taxes and Non-Ad Valorem Assessments,” I thought about going to the county seat (DeLand) and asking for a copy of several of the Budgets that I know are questionable. After a few moments of contemplation, I decided that my days of political activism must be curtailed. When I was younger, I was glad that I had the opportunity and courage to attempt to create a better and more just government on the city, county, state and federal levels.
No, I decided that a new group of politically active individuals would work for a better and more just society. As I gaze at the political landscape in the U.S., I am amazed especially at the New Democratic Party. This new Socialist Party wishes to give full health care benefits to individuals who enter our country illegally. Also, this Socialist Party wishes to take guns from law abiding citizens while ignoring the increasing murder rates of young minority citizens in many of our largest cities where law abiding citizens are prohibited from owning a gun.
The world is amazingly different from when I turned 21 and registered as a Democrat. Today, as an independent, I am pleased to learn that recent college graduates who seem unable to get a real job have all the answers to all of the world’s problems. I bet that about 40% of the recent college graduates can even read on about the eighth grade level and maybe half of those can understand calculus or other areas of mathematics.
R. Van Conoley