The Federal Excise Tax, which was enacted in 1898, amounts to about $3 per month for the average say, $100 / month phone bill. Heavy phone users might pay $100 or more per year. Yep, this was actually to pay for the Spanish-American War, and we've all been paying for "it" since 1898.
Fortunately, once this ludicrous tax started getting some legs in the press, no one could really defend it and the tax has indeed finally come to an end. We're even being offered refunds:
You are to claim the refund on the 2006 tax form that you file in 2007.
You can opt for a standard refund of $30 (if you have one exemption), $40 (if you have two), $50 (if you have three) or $60 (if you have more). This option requires no documentation from you.
If you have (or want to go through the trouble of procuring) your telephone bill statements from March 2003 to July 2006, you can get a refund based on amounts you were actually charged. In most cases, this can amount to a lot more than the standard refund -- perhaps as much as $100 to $300 for many of us. You need to fill out IRS Form 8913 for this.
Let's see, I'll get out my "Fawlty Math" calculator. 2006 minus 1898 is 108 years, times $36 a year, times 200 million Americans.... equals a $50 refund. Yep, works out PERFECTLY!
Folks, this completely, utterly idiotic example is just the tip of the iceberg. I have never liked US taxes. I've never gotten along well with Uncle Sam, and I don't like him any better now. Trust me, he can make your life miserable if you aren't careful.
The reason we have this incredible waste is that Americans put their elected representatives (Republican, Democrat, and Lieberman) into Congress and then go promptly to sleep, completely oblivious to the greedy abuse of power that ensues. Congress taxes, Congress spends, and it spends more than it gets, but who cares! It's kinda like:
"And it's 1, 2, 3 what are we taxin' for?
Who cares, I don't give a damn
Next stop is la-la land."
What happened to the "Contract With America"? The Republicans conveniently forgot about it, and that's why the stupid morons got booted out in the last election. No, I think the Iraq war midterm election thing was just a cover for plain bad governance. The American People are smart enough to realize we are going to be in Iraq for a very long time. Look, we still have 40,000 troops in Japan, and 30,000 in Korea after 60 and 50 years respectively. But, wars as a percentage of GDP are small compared to the reallyreallydumb stuff that Congress spends money on.
Democrats want things to be "more fair" by increasing the percentage of tax the rich pay, and that's total BS. If I make $2 million a year and you make $200 thousand, and both our tax rates are 20 percent, then I ALREADY pay ten times as much in taxes as you do, and there is no reason to increase my tax rate to 40%. Close the loopholes the rich use, and you can even lower all tax rates across the board.
What we NEED to do is lower the tax rates for EVERYBODY, WAKE UP, and stop letting Congress throw money down the fyookin' TOILET! Taxes SUCK. We don't need them, at least not the way it's set up now.
Maybe we could get the Chairman of the Federal Lubrication Board, Alan Greasepan, to fix things up?