Letter to the Editor - Springfield Union News

I submitted this letter some time ago to the Springfield (MA) Union-News and it got top billing that day with little editorial changes.
There is a special holiday which, like Easter, does not occur the same day each year. Unlike Easter it is not marked on our calenders. "Tax Freedom Day" usually occurs in May or June; the day that most working Americans could start taking their whole paycheck home if all taxes were to be paid in a lump sum. Financial experts call this the day which most working Americans finally start working for themselves instead of Uncle Sam.

But after that day how much more is lost indirectly due to government mandates? A few weeks ago New England Telephone customers were told of a rate increase. On that same form customers were being advised of special discounts. Recently I received news from Western Mass Electric Company of a rate increase. Once again there was a note that customers who receive SSI, AFDC, Refugee Resettlement or other subsidies as such may receive a 35% discount on their bill.

I ask myself, why do I work?? Almost $1 out of every $4 I earn goes directly (payroll deductions) to the government which requires utility companies to honor other people's money at a higher value than mine! I figure I must earn almost $80 pre-tax dollars to pay my $60 electric bill while others, consuming the same amount, will pay less than $40.

It upsets me to know that once again I am required to further dig deeper into my pocket to pay someone else's tab. After paying taxes on earning (income), spending (sales taxes) and having (excise and property taxes) I find that what is left still does not stand up to the power of the unearned dollar.