Monday, July 16, 2012

Becoming the Republican Party Flag Bearer: What Mitt Romney must know about his Taxation Information?

Keywords or Terms: Mitt Romney; Politicians; Tax Obligations; Internal Revenue Service; Accountants; Lawyers; Tax Cuts; Social Security Payments; National Public Radio; Wars; Heroes; Off-shore Accounts; and Trusts

Despite all the calls from well meaning Republicans close to Mitt Romney’s campaign team and the somewhat scanty calls from Democrats for the presumptive Republican nominee to release his taxation obligation or information for more than the one year he has made available, the millionaire investment broker and stalwart patron of the Mormon faith, has refused to release these information. The politician seems to believe that his taxation information is no one’s business; or that, the information is likely to put him at a disadvantage if the public becomes aware of this information with respect to his ambition for the White House.

You wonder why the rich and privileged among us, always acquire wealth and attempt to shield the size of that wealth, or information regarding how they amassed the wealth from the tax man and probably the public. This narrow, myopic way of looking at taxation obligation is one reason why many Americans are calling for the review and replacement of current tax code. America’s taxation system has not only failed the nation, it has turned Americans into crooks, ready to shield whatever information that would put them at a disadvantage from the Internal Revenue Service. To the average American, the taxation system is fraught with problems. Many Americans who could actually be paying into the nation’s kitty, or who could see their taxation obligation as a question of patriotism, perceive the system as unfair to them or their ambition. Rather than seeing their tax obligation as a necessity to meet current national expenditure obligation, or a way to pay their fair share of the national revenue or tax obligation, they often seek the protection of accountants and lawyers to cover up or take advantage of whatever loop holes are found in our laws. They seek not only to hide taxation obligation information from the tax man; they exploit our laws to prevent them from paying their fair share in taxes.

I’ve never met a rich politician who voluntarily wants to pay his complete tax obligation. Mitt Romney is not an exception and this is why his refusal to release his 2011 tax papers, or more than one year’s tax record, is hardly a surprise. There was a time in this country, just before the second world war, when Americans not only volunteered their hard earned money to buy war bonds on top of paying their yearly taxes on time and deferring consumption of luxury items so that old glory may shine as it does on many porches; now, we have top politicians attempting to hide information on their tax obligations. There was a time in this country, when well meaning patriotic Americans left very lucrative jobs in the private sector to work or serve in government jobs, so that the weak, the oppressed, and the captives in places as Europe, Asia and Africa, may find their voices and dignities within their borders. Such patriotism are probably absent today or long gone from many politicians; especially among some extreme right wing Republicans, seeking to rule over us as President or lawmakers. How do you explain this?

The answer lies in part, with the difficulty that is perceived around the tax code and what essentially constitutes one’s obligation to our nation and neighbors. While conceptually, many well meaning Americans like Warren Buffet and others like him, put the country first and are willing to pay more of their wealth in taxes to save old glory in time of need, there are others like Mitt Romney, whose first agenda, is to ensure that not a nickel more will they pay to the nation’s treasury than required by law. The ‘me-me’ first and the rest could go to hell culture, has so much percolated to the depth of their being, it has drawn them to ephemeral lingo of ‘no more new taxes’. Their lingo, or prejudice, has so much blinded their sense of nationhood and patriotism; they have turned down common sense reasoning regarding national political issues. Their choice is to sing loudly about why they are no longer willing to pay more in taxes and why the nation should cut her coat according to her size. The mantra of this group, many who has hijacked the Republican Party, though their leaders continue to deny it, is to push more off the welfare roll, allow more to die on the streets out of homelessness and lack of health care insurance, and protect their own kitty bank. They will rather undercut social security payments to widows, orphans and the elderly, than welcome a fair pay in taxes. This is what Mitt Romney embodies and effectively will represent in the coming general election. Whether people in this group deserve to rule over us as president and or political leaders, is better left to voters to determine in November.

There are two things that I know, I would never do: vote for any American, who does not put the interest of this nation first in his consideration for any office; or offer my vote to a party that is probably full of politicians who consider our tax obligation a game. Neither will I warm up to a party or group of persons who hardly seeks negotiations and compromises in their deliberation of national issues. This is a nation, where we send nineteen year olds out of the safety and comfort of their homes and bosoms of their nurturing mothers to die for our freedom; this is a nation, where in the past decade, we have been bringing home caskets of loyal, dutiful and forbearing Americans, who have never considered their personal interest first, before volunteering to go to war and die for us. It is also a nation, where a few rich ones, are busy working, day and night, to take advantage of the tax code, get military deferments for their children, and prevent making good on their tax obligation at all costs, just because they can do so. What type of politician seeks to defer his tax obligation(s), while the nation is spending about 10 million dollars a minute to fight wars initiated by men in the category of his wealth?

Today, the National Public Radio in Seattle announced that another American hero died in Afghanistan over the weekend, just 25 years old, leaving behind a wife and two children, one of them, an infant boy. Then I asked myself, is it the same nation, where Mitt Romney, with a silver spoon in his mouth by virtue of birth, was able to get a deferment, so he can go to a junket in France for his religion? A nation where the presumptive Republican flag bearer is refusing to pay his tax on time, or is withholding information regarding his tax obligation, while the nation is bleeding millions for Republican induced wars?  Talk about class warfare: why should any Joe Six Packs or Wendy Wine Cooler and their children of voting age choose to vote for Governor Mitt Romney in November? First, his children are never going to wear this nation’s military uniform just like their father. Second, he is not willing to subscribe to a health care system whose foundation was largely built on what he implemented in the State of Massachusetts, while a governor. Third, he is full of so many inconsistencies in his utterances; you wonder where he really stands on any issue of relevance in the nations politics. Whenever you hear that anyone, be it a politician or ordinary taxpayer, is shielding information from the IRS or deferring payments of his obligation because of any reason, less judicious, you must be circumspect of the individual’s character and intentions. If that individual is a millionaire politician, who has an ambition to become the President of this nation, who is constantly clamoring to cut taxes, while refusing to meet his own current tax obligation, you must ask yourself, what are his intentions and what is in it for him?

To push your thinking, Republicans and their 2012 flag bearer are so much concerned about the nation’s deficit, however, they are unwilling to pay more in taxes; rather, they would cut taxes, so we can continue to dig a hole for ourselves as a nation. The tax laws and codes are known to be deficient; and for several years, the Republicans have not made the re-write of our tax codes a priority, except paying it a lip service. In the past decade, we have accumulated huge debts by going to two wars without a plan to pay for the wars in the first place. Yet, the mission of the Republican’s flag bearer for the 2012 general elections is to reduce or eliminate taxes; money that the nation needs to pay down debts. Mitt Romney is leading the band wagon of those who have refused to pay their taxes on time or withholding information on what their tax obligation is. Rudimentary Economics tells me, when you keep spending money on wars, withholding your taxes or cutting taxes for the rich and powerful, you are not contributing money to the treasury. Without money in United States Treasury, we are more likely to default in our debts or go bankrupt; and or, get foreclosed by our creditors. If those who can afford to pay taxes are refusing to pay them on time or hiding their money in foreign off-shore accounts, how is the nation going to meet its short-term or long-term financial obligations.

So, the American voters must ask why can’t we pay more in taxes in the short-run and cut down our spending. Why can’t the rich among us, who can afford to pay their taxes, pay it on time, so we can estimate how much more we will need to pay down our nation’s debts? Yes, our tax codes may be out of whack, but the rich who are withholding information on their tax obligation, who are refusing to pay on time, who are siphoning their money away in secrete off-shore bank accounts, are hardly of any help here Think about it: The Republican Governor who wants to become our President is blatantly refusing to pay his taxes on time and withholding information regarding his current tax obligation to Uncle Sam! This hardly seems patriotic; and, it will be insensible to vote for this person. If the entire behavior of the presumptive Republican flag bearer is similar or can be construed as tax-dodging, the voters must be circumspect in casting their votes, when it is decision time! There is hardly any other way to define Mitt Romney’s choice to file his tax late or refuse to release more than one year’s tax obligations. The truth is: Americans like an upfront, upright and honest person as their leader, even if the truth hurts, especially on information about their tax obligations.

For now, keen observers of the American political system will like to remind the presumptive Republican flag bearer, the longer he continues to withhold information regarding his 2011 tax obligation, the more Americans will be interested in its content and the more they will be suspicious of the content when finally released. This is the reality that he will have to face when time comes. He has built so much interest in the content that undoubtedly, his 2011 tax filling will receive the attention of many forensic tax accountants, especially, with the acrimony around his release of tax information; and, the fact that he probably holds foreign off-shore accounts, in a binding trust and more!
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