Fun on Friday: Your Daily Dose of Dumb
There’s a video going around on Facebook blaming Trump because tax refund amounts are lower this year. I’m telling you, this video takes dumb to a whole new level!
I’m starting to feel like an old man yelling at the clouds.
“Kids these days!”
“Turn that racket down!”
“What is she wearing??”
I guess this happens to all of us as we get older. I used to wonder why my grandfather rolled his eyes all the time. Now I know. But, really, there are legitimate reasons to believe society is hurtling toward a canyon of dumb.
You’ve probably seen the Now This videos on Facebook. These videos generally hurt my brain to begin with. As they say, “The stupid hurts.” Now This was founded by some Huffington Post people. So, it should come as no surprise that their videos are generally left of center populist drivel. But they package them to look like news. So, they are pretty popular on The Facebook.
Anyway, there’s a Now This video making the rounds right now that is absolutely moronic. It features a bunch of people whining about the fact that they didn’t get a big tax refund this year. If you want to subject yourself to the pain, you can watch it.
Of course, this is Trump’s fault. Because, you know, everything is the Bad Orange Man’s fault.
Racism? Trump’s fault. Russia? Trump’s fault. The boil on my behind? Trump’s fault.
Anyway, as the video explains, the fact that refund amounts are down this year is all Trump’s fault too. The caption on the video’s Facebook post actually says, “’We had no idea this was coming.’ — Most Americans got smaller tax refunds, thanks to Trump.”
Now, it’s true refund amounts are down this year – at least I assume this is true. I have a friend who is a tax accountant who said it’s true. I don’t really have any reason to doubt her. But if you watch the video, about a minute in, you learn that – and I quote – “Most people paid less in taxes this year.”
Let me repeat that, because this should serve as the key point of the video. Sorry for yelling. But this grinds my gears. (Says the old man yelling at the clouds.)
MOST PEOPLE GOT A TAX CUT!
So, wait, video people. You got more money last year. But you’re mad at Trump? For putting more money in your pocket? Because reasons.
This demonstrates the complete economic and financial illiteracy in America. These people don’t understand withholding. They don’t even seem to realize they had more money in their pockets last year. I mean, did they not look at their pay stubs?
And of course, they didn’t think to save any of that extra money. No. In fact, one lady on the video complained about not being able to save. So, she was counting on that refund, like she does every year.
Here’s the logic: I got a tax cut. My paycheck was bigger. But I couldn’t save the extra money even though the government “saved” it for me last year. And now I’m going to cry on a video because I expected to get the same refund I got last year. Because I can’t do math.
We have become so lazy as a society that we depend on the government for our “savings.”
It’s really sad.
Now, here’s my caveat. It is possible that folks didn’t actually see that bigger paycheck because their health insurance costs went up. Maybe health insurance ate up the tax savings. That would explain why the extra money in tax savings didn’t show up on the paystub. Now, there’s something we can blame the government for — skyrocketing healthcare expenses.
Speaking of government — withholding is one of the most brilliant things the political class ever came up with. I’m pretty convinced a large chunk of the population thinks they don’t pay taxes because they get a refund every year. (Actually, about 50 percent of the population doesn’t pay taxes, but that’s a rant for another occasion.) People actually view tax refunds as the government giving them money.
Ummmm, IT’S YOUR MONEY!!! They are just giving it back to you after using you for an interest-free loan for a year. Well-played political class.
Sorry – old man yelling again.
Anyway, I’m pretty certain tax policy would change dramatically if people actually had to write checks for their taxes. Which is the brilliance of withholding. The way the system works now, money just disappears from your paycheck before you ever see it and then – boom – Uncle Sam sends you some money and you’re fat, dumb and happy.
Like this video.
OK, I need to go take a nap now.
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Fun on Friday is a weekly SchiffGold feature. We dig up some of the off-the-wall and off-beat stories relating to precious metals and share them with you – with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Click here to read other posts in this series.
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