Donating to Barry

I SENT MY kilo of carne to Barry yesterday. Yes, I filed my tax return.

Actually, I did not pay Barry yesterday. I paid him last year in the form of withholding when I took some cash out of an IRA. I pegged it very well, close to perfect, because I was due a refund of just $31.

turbineI imagine Barry will use my $4,969 to fund bald-eagle-killing wind turbines in Texas. My payment was nothing compared to the $13,000-plus federal heist that Steve Cotton suffered.

My tax return is a simple affair. We live on Social Security payments and a small pension from the Hearst Corp., my final employer. I toiled there 15 years. And occasionally we take money from the IRA. It’s when we take cash from the IRA that tax sometimes is due. The SS and pension alone is official U.S. poverty.

Thank the Goddess for the internet, which makes this yearly curse easy, labor-wise. Every year since moving over the Rio Bravo 15 years back I have used TurboTax, which is the most popular tax-filing website, it appears. However, a few times TurboTax has given me headaches, so I looked at alternatives this year.

One of the most popular options is TaxAct, and that’s what I used. It is far better than TurboTax. The only glitch, a temporary one, was when I neared the end of the process. What to do with the $31 refund? TaxAct showed only two options: electronic deposit to a U.S. bank or a check in the mail.

Neither of those work for me. Due to Barry (and this is true), I no longer have a U.S. bank. It was pulled out from beneath my feet last year due to fresh legislation known as FACTA, a poorly thought-out, Democrat-sponsored and Barry-signed piece of baloney that intended to catch fat cats with offshore accounts.

What it did mostly was torment retirees and other honest U.S. citizens living outside the United States.

A check in the mail is useless too because — also due to new U.S. legislation from the Democratic Party — Mexican banks no longer cash nor accept dollar checks for deposit. Unintended consequences.

When the U.S. bank closed my account — to avoid Barry’s onerous paperwork — I also lost my two U.S. credit cards that were paid in full each month from that bank account. I still have those cards, but I cannot use them because I cannot pay them. I paid for the TaxAct service with my wife’s HSBC credit card. HSBC will not give me a credit card because I am “too old.” I guess I could drop dead at any moment, and leave an unpaid balance.

Well, back to that $31 refund. I emailed TaxAct support because I was reasonably sure the refund could be applied to next year’s tax obligation. They answered the next day, pointing me to a rather obscure corner of the process where I could do that — and I did. Then I easily e-filed. I’ll be sticking with TaxAct.

Best of all was learning with certainty that I am exempt from Barry’s chaotic socialized medicine scheme due to living outside the United States. The advantages of living in Mexico keep piling up.

* * * *

I am not a fan of the president of the United States. I was borderline horrified today to read that a recent Gallup Poll showed his popularity had risen to near 50 percent again. Freaking incredible. Why?

BarryMany of the more rabid conservatives like to say Barry is a Mohammedan or that he was not born in the United States. I do not believe those things, but I do believe Barry is absolutely inept, a true child of the 1960s. Those of you who voted for him should do penance.

Re-education camps should be established for those who voted for him twice.

One of the best, most sober descriptions of the Barry situation that I have ever read is right here.

33 thoughts on “Donating to Barry”

  1. When you reach 70-1/2 years old, you are required to reduce your IRA by a certain amount each year. Haven’t faced that yet but hubs has. The institution that is trustee for the IRA informs him of how much. Hadn’t heard of TaxAct until now which we might be able to use. Turbotax imports all investment transactions from the financial institution where they repose so until I investigate whether or not TaxAct will work for us, Turbotax it is. Many people filing this year for last year and were sucked into Obamacare are going to have a potentially rude surprise. It seems that the unemployed had to estimate this 2014’s taxable income and that was part of what determined their subsidized premiums for insurance. If taxable income was more than estimated, repayment will come due depending on the parameters for subsidies. Rude legislation, rude surprise.

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    1. Carole: Yes, I’m aware of the IRA withdrawal requirement. Already have that in hand. Be taking out more than the required anyway, so …

      ObamaCare. How did I forget that in the post? I will go back and include it. I am exempt! Boy, if I had had to cough up cash to fund that collectivist scheme from down here, I would have been apoplectic.

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  2. Maybe, just maybe, if GW and his Republican congress hadn’t spent a fortune destroying the Middle East (and in the process creating a long-run, severe drain on the Treasury), hadn’t reduced tax rates to well below his excessive rate of spending, and had policed the banking system so we didn’t have a financial crisis and severe recession, the subsequent congresses and administration wouldn’t be desperate for revenue in any way they could get it.

    I’m not blaming Bush for FATCA, but seriously? Obama’s that bad? He’s following a total disaster, a man who throughout his career nearly destroyed everything he touched, including America. And his Republican congress didn’t check him one bit.

    By comparison, Obama is small potatoes.

    Kim G
    Boston, MA
    Where due to the ridiculous electoral college, winner-take-all system, it doesn’t matter how I voted.

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    1. Kim: We’ll have to agree to disagree on just about everything you wrote.

      Since you voted twice for Barry, I will have to direct you to the line going into the re-education camps. Do forgive.

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    2. I believe that Bush tried to call attention to the bank loans issue via the house of rep. The chairman of the banking committee was Barney Frank. It was Mr. Frank’s opinion that there were no problems with loans and declined to investigate.

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      1. Patzman: The Democratic Party was up to its ears in the fault swamp of the economic crisis. What you say about Barney Frank is true.

        A book published last month, Hidden in Plain Sight: What Really Caused the World’s Worst Financial Crisis and Why It Could Happen Again…

        http://cd.pl/uvd

        … contends the crisis was caused by government housing policies, particularly those pushed by the Democratic Party.

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  3. Sadly, the U.S. voters made a bad mistake. Then they doubled downed on it. About half of the people pay no income tax. They say they pay income tax, but then they file and get it back. Some even get the earned income tax credit.

    The situation will get worse because the segment of society wanting something from the government is growing while that paying the taxes is shrinking. We are running out of the wealthy to tax. Savings accounts and IRAs are probably the next things to be seized to be replaced with something like a national bond program. This has happened in other countries. And we know that nothing is as all enduring as a bad idea.

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  4. OK, I’ll take the bait. Every word Kim wrote was true. I find it amazing that you are usually a rational person. If, as you write Barry is inept, how would you describe the rich former drunk that drove this country, the middle east and most of the western world into a ditch? I’m not saying he was bad for everybody, the super rich have done rather nicely.

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    1. Francisco: Your take on things, like Kim’s, is that of Obama people. It is all the rage on university campuses, especially the hoity-toity ones where contrary opinions are shouted down; de Blasio’s New York; Madison, Wisconsin; San Francisco, California; most of the State of Oregon; the zonked stoners in the Occupy Camps; the mainstream media with special emphasis on The New York Times, MSNBC and CNN; the NAACP, Black Caucus, NOW, ACLU, the eternally “victimized;” and let’s not overlook high-profile folks like George Clooney, Michael Moore, Sean Penn, Whoopi Goldberg and their Show Biz ilk.

      I, on the other hand, hold a view that is 180 degrees in the other direction.

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  5. We are all entitled to our personal opinions and the right to express those opinions. Sometimes we do not understand the viewpoints of others, and sometimes they do not understand our positions.

    My opinion is similar to that of Rudy Guiliani’s. I am afraid Mr. Obama grew up in a different era with different ideas.

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    1. Señor Gill: Any opinion, crazy as it may be, is welcome here as long as it’s stated calmly. Yes, we are entitled to express our opinions in the Land of the Free. That is one of the many bones I have to pick with Barry fans, the more strident of whom, usually on university campuses, will shout you down if you disagree with them, literally. This has become quite common. Conservatives, on the other hand, with very few nut-case exceptions, are not guilty of this. It is one of our major differences. We may not agree with contrary opinions, but we normally leave them in peace.

      I don’t think Barry’s problem is that he grew up in a different era. His era, the flower children of the 1960s, was not far behind mine. We overlapped. His ideas and mine (and yours) are polar opposites. His problem is that he personifies 1960s notions, which are wishy-washy, un-American*, and accompanied by the chords of Kumbaya and the aroma of patchouli. Believe it. Don’t let the suit fool you. It’s why he won’t utter “Islamic terrorist.” These people are historically uninformed and unrealistic, to put it mildly.

      And very dangerous in the Oval Office.

      * They’ve yet to recover from the Vietnam War.

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  6. Interestingly, FATCA allows the U.S. attorney general to waive prosecution for unreported foreign accounts. I imagine this is for when Hillary Clinton gets caught with undisclosed Swiss accounts. If the fat-thighed Clinton does get elected I am afraid Christina Kirchner will be reincarnated North of the Rio Grande. She will make Barry look like the hapless Affirmative Action candidate that he is.

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    1. Wesmouch: Chubby thighs or not, Hillary is not going to be the next president for a number of reasons. One is that she stands for nothing much and the other is that historically when a president of one party has served two full terms the next president is almost always of the other party. There have been just two exceptions to that in U.S. history. Or perhaps it was just one exception. I don’t recall clearly.

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      1. Would love to see a candid camera type photo of you and your eloquent friend Wesmouch with your own thighs exposed. It seems only fair, doesn’t it? (Notice how I managed to write this without any name calling? Believe me, it wasn’t easy …)

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        1. Loulou: Please do note that it was Wesmouch who wrote that. Not me, and I wouldn’t have. Yes, I could have edited it out, but I already had to edit out another sentence of one of his comments, so I decided to let the thighs pass on through. Wesmouch, though on my side of the political spectrum, to his everlasting credit, has a tendency to fly off the handle at times.

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        2. In defense of my fat thigh comment, I will say that I learned it from the left. As Alinsky said, “Ridicule is you most potent weapon.” In fact, if Hillary wore corduroy she is in danger of spontaneous combustion. By the way, I have great looking thighs and can wear corduroy without the aide of a fire extinguisher.

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  7. “Pity poor Mexico, so far from God and so close to the United States.” Porfirio Diaz. At least we escaped Obamacare.

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  8. There were many causes of the housing/economic crisis that exploded in 2008. One is the countless people, Democrats and Republicans, who applied for and accepted mortgage loans that they were totally unprepared for and unable to pay off from the get-go.

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    1. Loans that banks were delighted to hand out by the hundreds of thousands, then bundle and sell to the fine Wall Street firms who then peddled them to investors who thought they were buying legitimate debt that would actually be paid. Have you guys been sleeping under rocks or something?

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      1. Loulou: There were many guilty parties involved in what caused the 2008 meltdown. Some financial institutions are certainly among that number. Plenty of blame to be shared. However, I prefer to believe the snowball got rolling due to Democratic Party policies and legislation to “help the poor.” Robert Gill, in a separate comment, cities something called The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977.” Just the word “community” lets you know it was a Democrat’s brainchild, perhaps your boy Barry.

        The bottom line, however, is that constantly pointing at George W. Bush and Wall Street is incorrect. But it’s been a fantastically successful smear campaign because most people — many Republicans too, I wager — believe it. I do not.

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  9. In my opinion, the root of the real estate collapse was “The Community Reinvestment Act of 1977.” Prior to the enactment of this law, banks and savings and loans would red line certain neighborhoods they saw as risky.
    Congress perceived this as being discriminatory.
    As a result, banks and other financial organizations were forced to loan on risky property to people without the means to make the payments. If a loan was denied, ACORN or some other left wing organization would sue. Banks always lose in court.
    However, they are not in business to lose money. They promptly invented the adjustable rate mortgage and the balloon payment. Life went on.
    However, balloon payments come due, and mortgage rates get adjusted.
    So, in 2008, I woke up and half the neighborhood was in repossession. In another six months, it was just about every house in the neighborhood.
    Bill and Hillary’s poorest of the poor moved in and squatted. They moved from house to house burning houses as they went.
    We had to pack a pistol just to take garbage to the alley.
    Now the houses are held by big rental firms. They are mostly Canadian supposedly, but the people that come look at the properties are ethnic Chinese.
    We now owe more on our house than what it is worth. We can’t sell it, and we are not about to walk away from it. Sad but true.

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    1. Jeez, man, that is terrible.

      I don’t know of the Community Reinvestment Act specifically, but it sounds like an element of the book I mentioned in the other comment (which I have not read. I have just read of it). The author maintains that Democratic policies “to help the poor” had a snowball effect that in time resulted in zillions of people getting loans they could not afford. It 2008, the whole farce exploded.

      Of course, it’s much more fun for the left, and has the double plus of deflecting the blame, to point fingers at Bush and Wall Street. And being the very effective propagandists they are, they have mostly succeeded with that bogus tale.

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    1. Señor Gill: That is why the subtitle of the book I mentioned is: “… and why it can happen again.”

      As long as we endlessly focus, wrongly, on Dubya and Wall Street, we won’t have addressed the root cause of the implosion.

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