Tuesday, April 09, 2002

Rich Man, Poor Man - I've been filling out my 2001 income tax returns for the past two nights, a task I have grown to dread over the years. The good news is that Jenny and I have a combined income in the top 5% of all taxpayers. The bad news is that liberals say we are now "rich", which supposedly justifies the fact that the federal, state and local governments currently take away over 40% of our income. The funny thing is, I don't feel "rich".

In March 2000, Jenny and I bought a house in Oakland that we could afford on my salary alone. I wanted to give Jenny the option to stay at home once we had children. We live in neighborhood that is nearly 90% minority, an equal mix of black, Hispanic and Asian residents. The few remaining white residents are either couples without children or crazed Ted Kaczynski-like hermits that haven't cut their lawns or painted their houses in 30 years. Earlier this year, car thieves stole three cars from our block, including our next-door neighbor's Acura. Last year, I left a garden hose on our front porch overnight and someone stole it. Don't get me wrong--we love our house and the tax break it provides us. But in two years, I haven't seen any other "rich" people living here in my neighborhood. Not a limousine liberal in sight. I also haven't found the person who stole my garden hose.


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