I was all set to write a fiery post about the idea of “re-distributing the wealth in America” but on this side of the workday I’m too tired to get angry enough to write the post I had in mind. The post was going to be inspired by this post on Brazen Careerist. I read it this morning and was quite steamed up but procrastinated the writing of it until later and now here we are.
The reason I got so steamed up is, I suppose, because of taxes. I hate them, as I’m sure many of you do. I am so confused about why a portion of my paycheck is taken out every month to pay for social security when I know that I will never see a dime of that ever again. I can’t fathom why I work three months out of every year just to pay taxes. Moreover, I am appalled to realize that I could earn nearly as much collecting unemployment and welfare as I could working full time.
What a messed up world!
These are all long-standing issues, but the one that tipped me over the edge was reading about the idea of re-distributing wealth. That is, taxing the rich more than the poor and spreading the love around.
The overwhelming question that pops into my head is: How is that fair? Why is it fair that the people who have sacrificed years in school, training, and working their way to success have to pay exponentially more than people who spent no time in school, have few skills, and barely earn enough to pay their bills? Since when is success a liability and an obligation to pay for the lifestyle of others?
Truly, I feel like people in my generation have gotten a bit of a raw deal. We have emerged into adulthood in a time when things are priced not based on what people can afford but on what they can finance. Our tuition is high, our cost of living is high, and our wages are comparatively low.
I get it, it sucks. I’m right there with you.
However, I don’t want the government to try to swoop in and save me like I’m a damsel in a fairy tale. I’m a big girl and I’ll do it on my own without your tax breaks, education incentives, and rebates.
I’ll work two jobs (maybe even three!) and live well below my income level. I’ll put money into my savings account and put the rest toward debt. I’ll eventually scrape my way out of this pit (the student loan pit) and I don’t need the government to tax the life out of my poor neighbors who have worked for forty years to achieve their success to do it.
I feel like people my own age have an overwhelming feeling of entitlement, like they’re owed an easy life. In my (admittedly few) 23 years of life, however, one thing has become abundantly clear: The government doesn’t owe you the America Dream. You owe it to yourself.
The idea of taxing the rich disproportionately to the poor is essentially penalizing success. You reward the poor by taking away less of their income, providing them with subsidized programs, and giving them handouts. You do this at the expense of the people who have worked hard for their money.
Where, then, is the impetus for working hard and contributing? What is there to stop you from giving up and succumbing to the lure of a system that provides a crutch to the poor by handicapping the successful?