Have you ever taken a moment to consider all the taxes you pay throughout your life? Many of these are hidden as fees or ‘buying costs’ that many don’t recognize as taxes, but nonetheless they are sneaking hard-earned money out of your pocket.
- Federal income tax – The federal government gets a slice of your paycheck right off the top.
- Social security tax – Another 7.5% of your paycheck; your employer pays another 7.5%, unless you’re self-employed in which case you pay the entire 15%. That’s in addition to state and federal income tax.
- Property tax – Even after your mortgage is paid you still don’t own your home. You’ll continue to be taxed on it until the day you die, and if you fail to pay your taxes, you loose your property. Who really owns your home?
- Driver’s license renewal fee – Hidden as a fee, this is really a tax.
- Telephone tax – Have you ever read a cell phone bill and noticed the federal government has a charge on your bill?
- Alcohol tax – This is in addition to sales tax. It is widely rumored and believed that this is why moonshine was outlawed by the government. Since moonshine is homemade it incurs no tax and is therefore a lost opportunity for income for the government.
- Gasoline tax – State, federal and local taxes don’t help gas prices stay affordable.
- Inheritance tax – When Grandma passes on and leaves you her belongings, the government wants their share, too. Nevermind that your grandmother paid property tax on her house, sales tax on other belongs and income tax before she even bought any possessions that were taxed yet again. Did somebody say “triple taxed”?
- Hunting & fishing licenses – If you wish to hunt or fish, even on your own property, you must pay a tax to the government that authorizes you.
- Kid tax – If your youngster earns or is given money, you must report it to the IRS so they can have their share of your child’s newspaper or grass-mowing allowance. (Form 8615)
- Dog tax – Certain localities require you to obtain a permit to own a dog. Of course, that incurs a fee, aka a tax.
These are just a handful of taxes Americans pay everyday – here’s a list of 97. Crazy, ridiculous, unfair or just plain amusing taxes aren’t a new thing, although America seems to have a special collection of these entertaining taxes. Entertaining, that is, until it’s time to actually pay them.
Absurd taxes have affected the world for centuries. Did you know England taxed wallpaper, bricks, fireplaces and windows in the 1600, 1700 and 1800’s? Considering that the IRS currently offers tax rebates for buying a new home or installing shutters, this might sound surprising that basic home needs were taxed in England so long ago. However, these taxes were supposed to be fair and bring in income for specific reasons – such as to support the Royal household. Not surprisingly, these taxes often didn’t sit well with the British people and they circumvented them by bricking up windows to evade the window tax or making bricks larger so the tax percentage was smaller on your home.