Monday, October 20, 2008

Time for an US-PAC

My family and I have always been mindful of our expenses. Like most people, we've occasionally splurged on a vacation or other expensive toy/ pastime, but on average, we've been pretty good. We live below our means.

A recent flight to Houston gave me a couple of hours to ponder business and family expenses, and look for ways to save some more money. I looked at that list again this morning, and was appalled!! You see, my biggest expense is taxes! Next to the tax line in my calculations, I had placed a little 'x', meaning ignore it. Ignore it!! There's nothing I can do about it anyway!!

In a year that has seen many businesses fail, my own business has also been running very lean. In a year that I will barely pay myself, my biggest expense is taxes!! Now I know that some of you will say, "That's why you should vote for McCain (or Obama)." But the taxes I'm talking about are from the State of New York!! Specifically, my property taxes, but there are so many other taxes here they must have hired a whole consultancy of creative accountants to come up with these. In a year that the New York state budget is hemorrhaging money, there is still a state employee handing me a toll-ticket for the Throughway instead of a handy, automated ticket dispenser.

The truth is, it doesn't matter who we send to Albany or Washington, DC. I hate to be apathetic, but the reality is, the spending is so ingrained into the system, that nothing but a wholesale reboot will change things.

So if voting won't do it, how about we form an US-PAC. Let's form a political action committee and buy our own slate of talking heads. Let's start a website, post questions, vote for a consensus, gather small contributions from many, and then buy a candidate to represent us. (Ok, so I also mourn the loss of the Republic, and this is something of a pure numbers/ pure democracy format, but it will get things started.)

Let's start with something we can all agree on such as "simplify the tax code to allow all income tax filings to be done on 2 pages or less. Eliminate tax loopholes and set a tax rate which will be published and easily known to all." It doesn't matter if it's progressive, flat, whatever, just that it's known and understandable. That's a first step -- we can argue the form of it later.

What do you think? (Obviously, I'm being cynical about "buying" a candidate, but you know what I mean. If PACs didn't work, they wouldn't exist, or be so well funded.)

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