Proud to pay my taxes? You bet

(This ought to bake Jon Caldara’s noodle – promoted by Colorado Pols)

On tax day, most of us stop to ponder if our taxes are a good investment.  Too often, we tend to focus on the bottom line-the one that reveals our payment. We tend to overlook why we pay taxes in America and what they buy.  Taxes fund the services that benefit the greater good.  Taxes are an investment in the communities that we all care about.  

When asked about the services taxes buy, people almost always say the same things–they appreciate parks and recreation, their children’s schools, and the safety of their neighborhoods.  They value libraries, community centers, health care and services for seniors.  Our tax dollars pay for the things we care about in our communities and make our communities the places that we love to live.  

The benefits we receive from taxes are so tightly woven into our regular activities that we fail to notice how they intersect with our daily lives.  The weather report you got this morning was likely from the National Weather Service – an agency funded by your tax dollars. The water you used in your coffee was safe to drink because of environmental regulations that were developed using your tax dollars.  The list goes on and on.  

That road you drive to work on is paid for by your tax dollars.  That same road is likely used by thousands of Coloradans each year.  We are all in it together and no one in Colorado made it without the benefit of our public services–the same roads that gets you to work also transport cattle to market, products to manufacturers and tourists across the state each day.  These are the collective investments that we should all be proud to make, I know I am.

Government detractors often claim that low income people don’t pay taxes. Not true. This convenient myth allows us to blame one  another rather than recognizing the basic truths that we all get great benefit from our public investments and as a society we are all better off when we are all better off.  

Is the distribution of taxes fair?  That’s a tough question since fairness is in the eyes of the beholder.  But we do know a few facts; we have lots of tax breaks that benefit small groups of people.  And often the beneficiaries of that special treatment are the wealthiest among us.

We should remember, however, that targeted tax breaks are enacted by the representatives that we vote into office.  If we are concerned about tax fairness we need to pay attention to the tax perspective of those we elect.  

On Tax Day we have the unique opportunity to ponder the value of our collective effort and how we all benefit from working together.  Please join us in acknowledging the value of our public investments through our #proudtopay Twitter campaign.  

14 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. ArapaGOPArapaGOP says:


    A coalition of left wing groups are gearing up today, Tax Day, to protest…in support of taxes. We say keep it up. The day of the year when virtually everyone becomes a right-wing anti-government zealot, after they realize how deep Uncle Sam is reaching into their pocket, is probably not the best day to show your undying love of taxes.

    The left wing is so out of touch with everday Americans that a tax policy analyst at the Liberal Loon’s Fiscal Policy Center wrote a Denver Post Op-Ed today saying she is “happy to pay taxes today.”

    Funny, that’s the exact same sentiment we heard yesterday at our tax advisor’s office.

    Everywhere we look people are skipping down the street, overjoyed about the government taking their hard earned money.

    Sometimes I think some liberals might be smart, and then I see stuff like this.

    • AristotleAristotle says:

      and judge the left based on that?


      • ArapaGOPArapaGOP says:

        This is America. We fought a war to pay taxes on our terms, and to never be happy about it.

        You can go door to door being “proud to pay,” I will go door to door telling voters I want them to pay as little as absolutely necessary. Who do yu think will win?

        • sxp151 says:

          The reason most people think you guys are nuts is because of things like this:

          I think you earned every dollar, you should get to keep every dollar that you earn. That’s your money, that’s not the government’s money. That’s the whole point. Barack Obama seems to think that when we earn money it belongs to him, and we’re lucky just to keep a little bit of it. I don’t think that at all. I think when people make money it’s their money.

          Most people ARE proud to pay taxes, just like they’re proud of being law-abiding citizens. Some psychopaths like breaking laws just for fun, and some sociopaths think the tax rate should be zero, but the rest of us LIKE living in society as normal people. Come over, we’re nice.

        • AristotleAristotle says:

          An oxymoron for the ages.

          And who do you mean by “we?” Unless you’re 250 years old, YOU didn’t do shit. But, for the sake of argument…

          Find me – Please, just one – quote from any Revolutionary leader that can be construed to mean that they meant to pay taxes only in the sullen fashion you describe.

          Just one.

        • raymond1 says:

          Yeah, that’s exactly what it was about. Do you have a PhD in history like failed professor Gingrich.

    • DavidThi808DavidThi808 says:

      However, as a rational person I realize that the results I want require effort. So I (unhappily) exercise regularly.

      By the same measure, yes I’d be thrilled if I paid no taxes and got all the services. But again, the services I receive for the taxes I pay – pretty good investment.

      • ParkHill says:

        Entitlements mean that I have paid in to Social Security and Medicare, the Government has protected my contributions in a “lock box”,  and when I get old, I am entitled to receive the benefits.

        Businesses get highways to move their goods, the internet to advertise goods, public universities to train up educated workers. These things are paid for by taxes.

        Just like a business owner, I pay taxes in order to receive benefits.

    • ajb says:

      Maybe you should try living there.

      Then you wouldn’t have to contribute to things like:

      Healthcare for the elderly and poor

      Retirement benefits

      National defense


      Roads and other infrastructure

      A Court system to enforce the rule of law

      Weather forecasts

      Safe food

      Safe drinking water

      Clean air

    • MADCO says:

      b) most taxpayers can’t tell you what rate they pay nor compare it to the rate their parents or neighbors pay.  

      c) instead most taxpayers can tell you whether they got a refund or not this year, and how it compared to last year.

      I know a tax payer OUTRAGED that this year he owed just under 3,000 when last year, as in prior years,  he got a 1200 refund.All the evidence he needs to know that he pays far, far too much tax.   He’s actually paying at a slightly lower rate this year.  

      He restructured his mortgage, and paid abut $15,000 less mortgage interest.  And got a smaller deduction.  $15,000 smaller deduction, $3000 higher tax bill.  A screaming deal.  But his takeaway is that his tax bill went up, damn socialists

      Tax rates are lower now then they have been in a long time.

      When is it ever appropriate to increase tax rates?

      And if you like, I’m perfectly willing to address the related, but separate questions, when is it ever appropriate to lower tax rates? When is it ever appropriate to decrease spending?

    • Duke Coxdukeco1 says:

      everyone becomes a right-wing anti-government zealot,


  2. Gilpin Guy says:

    The A-BOT is probably ashamed that he has to pay any taxes.  He is probably thinking “Oh the ignobility of supporting the greatest nation on earth” or some such traitorous thought.  What a traitor.

  3. nancycronknancycronk says:

    since joining together to sacrifice for the common good is the hallmark of a civilized society.

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