Taxes Suck, but Washington needs your Help

I cringe every year when I have to sit down and do our taxes. When I finish, it is like an enormous burden is lifted off my shoulders. Thank God for Turbo Tax. Frankly, I would prefer a flat tax, but as long as there are politicians running our country, I don’t see that happening. Besides, how many thousands of Federal employees would be out of a job if the IRS were shut down.

I spent the first hour trying to locate the computer files for my previouos years taxes with no success. I am not sure how Turbo Tax hides them, but once I began doing my return, Turbo Tax found them immediately and I was off and running.  Even though I have spent the last 30 years in the computer industry, I still haven’t learned to follow the prompts on the computer screen and execute the program the way it was designed to function. For some reason, I still think I am smarter than my computer…WRONG!

My wife had been bugging me to get them done assuming we would get a refund. She did work in Iraq most of last year and as long as you have spent at least  12 consecutive months in a war zone, your salary is not taxed.  So I get the shoeboxes and file boxes with all the receipts out and get to work.

I toiled for what seemed to be an eternity and got everything entered into the computer forms and I am ready to run the error check. Well, there were a few omissions and entry errors, but Turbo Tax helped me correct all of those except for one item. When doing the earned income credit form for my wife’s tax free income, I inadvertantly entered a date in Part II of Schedule 2555 instead of Part III which created an error. I went in and deleted that entry, made the appropriate entry in Part III and thought I was done. Well, it kept indicating an entry error even though I had deleted that entry. I printed the return out and there was no entry on Part II of that form so I was convinced I was done and good to go. Surprise, surprise…it still didn’t work.

Okay, I thought, I will just contact Tech Support. Guess again Leroy…ain’t happening unless you get a case number and stand on your head and gargle peanut butter. In reality, software companies like Intuit would prefer you jump though several hoops before you can have the privilege of talking to a live human. There’s the Live Community which should have all the answers, unless you have a tough question. Then there is email support…who may be able to provide an answer to your question in 72 hours.  For $29.95 you can talk to a professional. Of course, they don’t specify what type of professional you will be chatting with. I call my wife at work and she suggests maybe I could just start over and reenter everything. Not an option thank you, I told her. I know I am smarter than this machine and by God I am going to fix this problem someway somehow. Wait a minute, didn’t I already admit to not be smarter than a computer?

So I go back to the form and enter NA for the ending date in Part II, then delete it and danged if that didn’t fix it. Why or how I don’t know. All I know is that my taxes are e-filed and transmitted off into the intergalactic bit bucket in the sky. Hopefully they will reach Uncle Sam’s desk by sometime this year and they will approve our refund. And as soon as our refund comes, my wife and I will do what we can to stimulate the economy.
Well, I am off to the accupuncture clinic for some well deserved poking and prodding. And if you are reading this on one of my blog sites, check out our web site at That would make my wife even happier.


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