Monday, August 8, 2011


Well, I am sure you all are very respectful and law abiding citizens. You may curse the Government every once in a while for raising the taxes, but come April 18th, you will all be busy filing your tax returns. And if you are unlike me, then you might get it done a couple of days earlier. And I am sure you know the various nitty-gritties of optimizing your tax returns and maximizing your savings even if you are spending the same amount on a tax consultant who will probably spend 2 weeks in a year earning as much as you did in a whole year!

So, I am not here to give you any tax saving tips as I am probably less informed than you are.  And since I am a law abiding citizen too, I will not give you any tax evading tips either. But have you ever wondered where all your tax money goes? I am sure you have. Over the weekend, jobless as I was, I did some research to quench my curiosity and I came across some very creative and intriguing work done by some brilliant minds. So I thought it would be nice to bring such cool stuff to your attention.

Okay. Let me start with a basic question. how many hours do you think you worked (or slogged) for your employer today? 8? I hear some workaholics correct me! 9 is it? May be 10? Well.. not quite right! Here is why! Assume for a minute that you are making $100,000 a year and you are single. Cool assumptions, eh! That, in taxonomic terms would mean that you would pay $29,397 a year in federal taxes which is about $113 a day. Whoa!! Now if you do the math (which you probably should if you are getting paid that much), you are actually spending 2 hours and 27 minutes working for the US Government every day and funding its various departments. Well… we are all very unique Government employees. We work for the Government and pay it in return for that privilege. Okay… A minute is over by the way. Get back to reality!

Now all that math, that is certainly not my handiwork! It is derived from a brilliant TAX CLOCK designed by Fred Chasen. It has a lot more cool features. Check it out:

Okay.. now you know how much tax you pay each day. But do you know where does all the money go to? Who ends up getting the lion’s share of your hard earned money? I am not quite sure you will like what you find! Did you know that 16% of it went to your Social Security, 16% went to Medicare and 17% went to National Defense? And more importantly did you know that 10% went towards just the interest of the nation’s debt and only 3% went towards education? No wonder the debt situation is so bad!

Here is a very cool demystification of the federal taxes and Government spending which was designed by the Anil Kandangath which won the award for the best tax app in the Google Data Viz Challenge. Here.. go ahead and play with it. You will get a lot of insightful information here which will give you more perspective.

Finally if you are bored and want to have some real fun, I would recommend this one: You can get the Government drunk (if it is not already drunk with power) by filing your tax returns in beer cans. Or you can wake the Government up from its slumber by filing your tax returns in cups of Starbucks coffee. Well.. one suggestion: Don’t feed it with burgers though! It is obese enough already!

I hope that was useful. Well.. you don't have to thank me for making you a tax expert! ;) 


  1. depressing!!!!!!
    not the post - the post has nicely hand-held the reader and taken him along - but the truth!
    your curiosity!!!!!

  2. haa ha.. thank you so much Sujatha. Hope I didn't confuse you too much. ;)

    Sometimes my brain suffers from a fit of boredom and strange things like this blog post happen!

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