Today is Tax Day. Tax Day sucks. For those of us who are self-employed, it can be a stressful little dance we have to step to: the dance around making more money and having enough to give Uncle Sam, from claiming all our maximum deductions to then trying to get a loan from institutions that have no clue what we really made.
Then there’s the so-called “self-employment tax.” It’s really just the other half of the social security tax. Everyone who works pays into the system, it’s 15% of your total income, with the employer paying 7.5% and the employee paying 7.5%. If you’re self-employed, you pay the whole 15%. So, in Mass., that means I pay out 35% of my income back to Uncle Sam/Mass. I’m not complaining, in California it would be more. Their state income tax is 13%; in Mass. it’s 5%. Why we still have the moniker “Taxachusetts” is beyond me. We are about right in the middle of the pack when it comes to taxes. But, in my estimation, we are way near the top in standard of living.
Anyway, I digress. Tax Day still sucks. I don’t mind paying my fair share, I really don’t. But, somehow, it just never seems that way.
I’m delighted that I have subsidized health care and I have for several years now in this great Commonwealth, but it looks like I’ll be losing most of that this year. I have no idea why they think I’m so damned rich. Really, the years I stay home and keep my nose to the grindstone, I pay through that same nose. The years I galavant and get tsked-tsked at by my accountant, I seem to be doing okay.
It’s a delicate little dance, trying to pay enough through the year so you don’t get socked on April 15. The funny thing is, I don’t think I’ve ever gotten it right. I’ve been a freelancer since 1984…go figure. It always seems that the years they want the most are the years I’m sure I made the least. But, I guess the computer program doesn’t lie. If it’s in the computer, it’s what I made. If it isn’t in the computer, then it isn’t a legitimate business expense.
Tax Day sucks. Yes it does.
Today, I wait anxiously for the mail to come and hope there will be a few checks in there to help me pay my due to Uncle Sam. If there is, I’ll rush to the bank and then to the post office and hope the money is available in the checking account before Uncle Sam tries to collect on it.
Even my money is dancing that silly little dance we have to step to for living in this great nation of ours.
Tax Day sucks. It really does.
But I suppose that Tax Day here in the US is better than a tax-free day just about anywhere else on earth. Time to scrape together some change and see if I can treat myself to a store-bought cup of coffee when I head off to the post office later.
Hope my check doesn’t bounce. Uncle Sam won’t like that much.