Friday, November 20, 2009

My 7 year old is smarter than a Politician!

Last night working with my son on spelling words and phonograms for his test today the word "TAX" came up. Son do you know what Taxes are? He had no clue and nor should he since we have never discussed it. We went over to his allowance book and I explained that we give the government part of all the money we earn. I really should have said they confiscate it, but I figured that would be a whole other discussion on the word confiscate. Son we give the government part of everything we earn so the government has money for things like our soldiers to protect us. With his allowance I showed him instead of him getting twenty dollars last month he would have gotten fourteen dollars. Six dollars going straight to the government. The look of frustration on his face was priceless, but he actually understood it. So I decided to go on a bit further and explained that if he earns a lot of money then the government takes even more, but if he earns just a little then the government won't take very much or even none at all.
He responded to all of this by saying two things:
"Daddy I don't want to earn very much so I don't have to give it all to the government."
"Can I just send my money to the soldiers?"

How on earth do you explain our incoherent tax system to kids without being utterly embarrassed? To think of all the political directions I could have gone with this conversation, but I bit my tongue on the hopes that my son will develop his own views of our political world. One thing for sure is that even a child can recognize that the system in place does not reward success and even goes as far as to punish it. Knowing my son this topic will come up a couple hundred times this weekend and it's going to be a long weekend.


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