As much as I would love to live in a utopia without taxes (and snakes as long as we’re going to think big), we live in a world where we have to pay for services we receive. So the only thing I can do to take the sting out of paying taxes, is to work to spend your dollars wisely. There are many programs where judicial cuts would reduce our deficit and spend our tax dollars more wisely.

If you can avoid paying taxes, you should. That’s just being wise with your money. If I can move to Ireland and pay as low as 12.5 percent as compared to 35 percent in the U.S., well then I’m going to enjoy some Guinness with my savings. So corporations move and we get 0 percent of 0. So I agree with dropping the tax rates on corporations to 15 percent and letting corporations return to the U.S. to do business.

Another thing that just burns me is when senior citizens whom have worked hard all of their lives and saved money for retirement are penalized on their Social Security payments. You save and pay into Social Security only to have the benefits you paid slashed for being a responsible hardworking American. If you make more than $32,000 including half of your Social Security benefits, you are taxed 50 percent on your benefits. And if you make more than $44,000, your benefits are taxed at 85 percent. So even though you paid into Social Security your entire life, it will be stripped from you because you planned for the future too well.

These are not huge incomes that are being taxed at 85 percent but relatively modest incomes. I don’t believe Americans are the government’s property, cash cows to be milked until we die. We don’t owe the government the majority of our labor for the privilege of existing. The government exists to serve us. We need a change of mindset in this country. Our elected leaders need to quit calculating just how much money they can strip from us before we give up and quit being productive. They need to start thinking about how to make the government work without us needing a high-priced tax accountant to protect our money from the government.

When I’m elected I promise to crusade for wiser spending, and lowering taxes. I won’t vote for higher taxes because we all know that Congress will spend even more. It’s time for a change in America, and that’s not going to happen if we send more establishment cronies to D.C. Republicans and Democrats argue about who is going to get the biggest piece of the pie, and neither you or I, will get a taste of that pie. We’ll be left with the empty pie pan and the dishes to wash.

So when you fill out that ballot, you need to vote Mark Wicks and tell Washington that you are done being used as a cash cow. We are Americans and we expect hard work and wise decisions to be rewarded, not punished by taxation.

Mark Wicks is the Libertarian candidate for Montana's lone U.S. House seat. 

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