Tax season is in full swing and the deadline for submitting your portion is fast approaching. This year the deadline for filing your federal taxes has been extended by three days to April 18. (In case you were wondering why, it is in observance of Emancipation Day in the District of Columbia.) Your state taxes however, may still due by April 15. Check with your state government office for your exact deadline.
The history of taxes and taxation take us back to our colonial days and part of the reason for our succession from Great Britain. The beginning purposes of federal taxes in the United States though were to fund our war effort in the American Civil War. Today besides funding war efforts, taxes pay for a wide variety of expenses and programs. Not surprising though, most of us really don’t know where our tax dollars go within the federal budget.
We thought you might be curious. Take a peek:
|Net interest Payments||6.6%|
|Law Enforcement & Homeland Security||2.4%|
|Health (not Medicare or Medicaid)||2.0%|
|Management of Federal Employees & Buildings||1.4%|
|Environmental Protection & Natural Resources||1.0%|
|Space & Science||0.7%|
|Housing & Community Planning||0.6%|
|Workplace Safety & Rights||0.5%|
|Diplomacy & Embassies||0.4%|
|Internal Revenue Service (IRS)||0.4%|
|Statistics & Weather||0.3%|
|Trade & Economic Development||0.3%|
|Arts & Culture||0.1%|
|District of Columbia||<0.1%|
|Bailouts, Currency & Financial Regulation||-3.7%|
If you would like to know how this specifically applies to you. Visit: thirdway.org/taxreceipt. You can enter the amount of your federal taxes paid in 2010 to see exactly how much went to each category. You can also review each category for a sub-list of what is included in each one and how those areas are divided.
Incidentally, as of January of this year our national debt was $14,025,215,218,709 of which every American has a share of $48,382. Unfortunately, that amount is $5,768 more than it was in 2009.
If this information concerns you, get involved! You can easily find out who your elected officials are and how to contact them by visiting: congress.org and simply entering your zip code under the “Get Involved” section.