Free money

One site I frequent for tech tips is Lifehacker, and I can recommend it highly for tweaking your always-changing technology landscape. There are tips both useful and not useful but still interesting galore.

If there is a political bias, it’s blessedly hard to discern. But there is sometimes cluelessness. Case in point is a post entitled Four Ways Mint Can Make Your Tax Season Easier. Mint is a mobile finance app, but that’s not the subject here. The subject is this opening paragraph:

“Last year 110 million Americans got a tax refund and the average amount was about $2,800. That’s a lot of money—so why do we still love to hate tax season?”

The author goes on, properly, to write of the insanely and unnecessarily complicated tax code. But the implication is clear: if Uncle Sam sends us a check for thousands of dollars, we ought to love paying taxes. This is high-octane cluelessness.

Here’s a basic reason we should hate paying taxes, even if we do get a refund: Those refunds were your money to start with. Money that the government has taken. It’s not a gift when it is returned to you. Lastly, it is money that you can not spend or invest, a zero interest loan to Uncle Sam.

Yes, we must pay taxes. No, we should not love having our money taken, especially when it’s more than we are legally required to pay.

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