Here's the take home message kids:
"...Americans [in 2002] will work longer to pay for government
(117 days) than they will for food, clothing, and shelter combined (106 days),
write J. Scott Moody and David Hoffman in their report. " Only in the
last decade have taxes exceeded spending on these basic necessities...."
Washington Bulletin: National Review's Internet Update for
April 26, 2002
By John J. Miller, NR national political reporter
Happy Tax Freedom Day
And many happy returns.
You probably thought you were done paying your taxes nearly two weeks
ago, on April 15--but you really wonít be done until tomorrow.
Thatís because Saturday, April 27 is Tax Freedom Day. This is the day
ìwhen Americans will finally have earned enough money to pay off their
total tax bill for the year,î according to the Tax Foundation, which
calculates Tax Freedom Day annually. April 27 is the 117th day of 2002.
This marks progress over last year, when Tax Freedom Day came on April
29, and also the second year in a row thereís been an improvement. In
2000, Tax Freedom Day fell on May 1, the latest date ever.
The recession and the Bush tax cut explain the improvement. If neither
had occurred, the < http://www.taxfoundation.org/ > Tax Foundation says
this yearís Tax Freedom Day would have fallen on May 4. If Al Gore had
been elected, there still would have been a recession but there would
not have been a tax cut--and Tax Freedom Day would have fallen on May 1.
Much remains undone. At the start of Bill Clintonís presidency, Tax
Freedom Day arrived on April 20--exactly where it was all the way back
in 1969. This may be the real Clinton legacy: In the span of eight
years, he managed to rob Americans of a whole week of their economic
lives every year for the foreseeable future.
ìAmericans [in 2002] will work longer to pay for government (117 days)
than they will for food, clothing, and shelter combined (106 days),î
write J. Scott Moody and David Hoffman in their report. ìOnly in the
last decade have taxes exceeded spending on these basic necessities. In
fact, Americans will work longer to afford federal taxes alone (80 days)
than on any other major budget item.î
Hereís how Moody and Hoffman explain their methodology: ìAll income
thatís officially called income by the government is counted, and
everything the government considers a tax is counted. Taxes at all
levels of government are included, whether levied by Uncle Sam or state
and local governments.î
This means that personal Tax Freedom Days will differ, with place of
residence accounting for much of the variation. Yesterday, for instance,
was Tax Freedom Day in Arizona, Delaware, Nebraska, New Hampshire, and
Ohio. Sunday is Tax Freedom Day in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
Alaskaís Tax Freedom Day is the first in the nation, on April 8. The
suffering citizens of Connecticut are last to throw off the yoke of
government, on May 14. Only 13 states have Tax Freedom Days that fall
after the national average, but theyíre some of the biggest: California
(April 29), New York (May 6), and Illinois (April 29).
Assuming the economy recovers from recession and there are no further
tax cuts, the national Tax Freedom Day will resume its march into May.
ìThe current tax cuts have just about played themselves out,î says
Moody. ìIn a growing economy, we need a tax cut every year just to keep
bracket creep in check.î
In other words, a prosperous economy bumps people into higher tax
brackets, meaning they surrender a greater share of their income to
government. Moody says it would take a tax cut of about $25 billion each
year just to stop Tax Freedom Day from slipping to later in the year.
ìIn the absence of a double-dip recession, weíll need more cuts and
deeper cuts to continue seeing the improvement of the last two years,î