VITA: Retake Money from the Government to Give to the Poor

President Bush, responding to the problem of a federal budget that has grown out of control during his free-spending term in office, is planning to propose a bold new plan to dispose of a large portion of this embarrassing excess spending by launching it into space.

If you’d like to help take money back out of the government’s accounts and put it back in to people’s pockets, one way you can help is to volunteer at a free tax preparation center for potential earned-income tax credit qualifiers. Now’s the time to sign up, in time to get trained and ready for when people start arriving with their paperwork.

A lot of people who qualify for the EITC don’t apply for it — either because they don’t know about it, or because they don’t realize that they qualify, or because they get flummoxed by all of the paperwork that the IRS requires.

Tax preparation centers that give free help to low-income people who potentially qualify for the EITC can be found all over the place — do a Google search for one in your area or just keep you eyes and ears open. (Here’s the info for a volunteer training program in San Francisco.)

Daniel Gross, in Slate magazine, gives a run-down of how the payroll tax, and social security in general, has been raided to provide cover for increased government spending and cuts of more progressive taxes. This again brings up this sticky, inconvenient question of how to evade the payroll tax that this tax resister hasn’t found a good answer for yet.