I’m a webmaster and programmer by trade. Part of my job duties involve administration of the company’s web server. As such, I do my absolute best to block all traffic from China.
Why? Because of the hacking that originates there. There’s not a day that goes by where some automated script isn’t attacking my server, and most of it originates in China. I’m not saying it’s state-sponsored, but on the other hand, there doesn’t seem any official effort to stop it, either. Perhaps it’s a matter of calculated indifference, which I surmise is a close cousin to plausible deniability.
Are you enjoying national tax day? Are your taxes done? Or have you committed a boo boo?
The local news has been reporting the scam for months. Clever identity thieves somehow are able to take a minimal piece of information, like a social security number, and use it to abramoff with someone else’s tax refund.
The most unbelievable part is that they are somehow able to get around the world famous tight security at the IRS.
There’s one for you, nineteen for me.
–The Beatles, Taxman
Ah. A story problem. Math will elucidate the tax bracket faced by the The Beatles. 1 + 19 = 20. So the tax rate (the 19 for the taxman) is 19/20. My calculator tells me that equals .95 aka 95 percent. Yes, The Beatles were in the 95 percent tax bracket. Says Wikipedia, “As their earnings placed them in the top tax bracket in the United Kingdom, the Beatles were liable to a 95% supertax introduced by Harold Wilson’s Labour government.”
Hearing about this scam over and over again, and how it apparently worked, I began to formulate my plan. I was going to
steal the Declaration of Independence file for Mitt Romney’s tax refund. With that I’d finally have enough money to retire, move to a beach on Zihuatanejo and hang out with Andy Dufresne and Ellis “Red” Redding.
All I had to do was get my hands on Mitt Romney’s W-2 forms. Dammit, foiled again!
Like I tried to teach my son when he was younger, there is no $20 dollar bill fairy. If you lose your money, there is no force in the universe that will say, “Tell me all about it. Here, allow me to give you some more.” It just don’t work that way. What’s gone is always gone and it always stays that way. So don’t lose that $20 dollar bill.
Meanwhile, though, apparently the IRS is in the habit of giving refunds to the wrong people. The bad people. And that got me to wondering. Is there a tax fairy?
Think of it this way: Let’s say I owe you $20. Then, for whatever reason, I give your money to Bob. Does this mean I no longer owe you a debt? I doubt you’d agree. You likely say, “I don’t care who you did what to for how many cookies. I want my $20. Guido here is about to offer some encouragement to your kneecaps.”
The simple point I’m trying to make is that the IRS being fooled by criminals should not alleviate their responsibility to give people their own money back. So you gave the money to Bob? Boo freakin’ hoo.
If not, then I suggest a new tax form. Let’s call it the 7734-PROX-EZ.
- Line 1: Amount of tax you owe.
- Line 2: Amount of money you gave Bob. (Enter amount of line 1.)
- Line 3: Amount you own the IRS: (Subtract Line 1 from Line 2.)
- Line 4: Sign full name to indicate your tax burden this year is a mulligan.
If the IRS isn’t being a tax fairy for the victims of crime then I’m sure they’ll understand.
Last, but not least, one other simple concept:
- The guy who threw a rock and smashed your window to bits? He owns the glass store.
- The guy who slashed the whitewalls on your car? He owns the tire store.
- The people who make computer viruses? The makers of your favorite anti-virus software.
- The company that makes tax filing software? They vigorously oppose efforts to make filing taxes simpler.
This is all, of course, predicted by GUNT, my Grand Unification Negativity Theory for everything.
In case that last bullet point is somehow unclear, let me say this:
It looks like there is a tax fairy after all. He just works a bit differently (more sinister and evil) than even I expected. And his name is TurboTax. I try to be negative but sometimes even I can be schooled.
Well played, TurboTax.
Tom’s Law #42
Like a boss or a customer in a restaurant, anyone paying you money to do work on their behalf believes it is their duty to make your life a living hell.
Demon clients are customers where you lose money. They are basically squeaky wheels that aren’t worth the grease to fix. (That’s not to say, however, that a fix would be having them greased.)
Consider: You and another person are customers of some product or service. You pay on time, are reasonable, and an all-around good egg. The other person, however, is slow to pay, constantly whines, excessively consumes your time and resources, and basically sucks your life away like the machine in the dungeon in The Princess Bride. Coincidentally they use the word “inconceivable” a lot.
What if you both pay the same rate? If so, then simply by being nice, you are getting ripped off. Big time. Essentially your function is subsidizing assholes.
Smart companies know this and charge demon clients more and good clients less. Generally speaking, less subsidizing that goes on the better. Subsidizing is an affront to concepts like fairness and equity.
PITA? That stands for, of course, “Pain In The Ass.”
When you combine demon and PITA into a single client? That’s where the magic happens. That’s when it’s truly something special. A singular experience worth writing home about.
For today’s self reblog I ask you to read a short story that’s only 30 words long. Thirty words! This is where we separate my true friends from the hanger-oners. What about it? Do you have the intestinal fortitude to read 30 words? I didn’t think so.
Originally posted on Shouts from the Abyss:
by Tom B. Taker
“By the Whiskers, we will be victorious,” CrookedTail hissed.
The assembled warriors cheered.
“Now go lick yourselves and rest up. We leave after Fourth Nap. Those dogs are gonna pay!”
This post is part of the BlogShorts challenge. June 2011 – 30 stories – 30 words – 30 days.
After scouring the web for news that matters, I stumbled across this “nugget” of wisdom. It was love at first bite! I’m proud to feature this post as my Reblog of the Week!
Originally posted on My Crowded Head:
Spice up your prom experience! Or, original recipe your prom experience.
Have you ever said to yourself, “Self, I wish there were more things in the world needlessly made out of chicken?”
Of course you have.
Well you’re in luck, because KFC just introduced the chicken corsage to the world for all your formal event needs.
Yum! Brands, Inc. / Via kfc.com
With your order, you’re given a $5 KFC gift certificate so that you can buy your own chicken and affix it to the corsage yourself.
Kind of takes some of the glamour away, if you ask me.
Nanz & Kraft Florists / Via nanzandkraft.com
Careful, though! It could backfire.
Yum! Brands, Inc. / Via kfc.com
Is there free will? If not, then it sucks to be you. Because, those dies that were cast are mighty damn cruel. Think about it. If there’s no free will then you have to act like this. Somebody clearly doesn’t like you.
If there is free will? Then you’ve got a hell of a lot of explaining to do.
“What happened? Why did you run over and kill those pedestrians?”
“I couldn’t see. The sun was in my eyes.”
“Uh, okay. Follow-up question: Why the fuck was your car moving?”
“I don’t know. All the other cars (that I couldn’t see) were moving, too. I had faith we were all moving together. It seemed like the thing to do.”
“Seriously. How do you expect us to allow you to continue to roam free? Shouldn’t you have been crushed upon the rocks at the bottom of the sea cliff by now? And, just curious. I have to ask. Have you reproduced yet?”
“Hey, you. What’s your story?”
“I decided to teach my 10-year-old son how to drive. A truck. Right by a river. And, for good measure, I brought all of my other sons along for the ride.”
Good plan. After all, what could possibly go wrong?
Long story short, I choose to do things like not walk in front of moving vehicles. To each their own.