Interesting Article

4 of a kind

Repeated violations of forum rule 1.16 - troll
Mar 11, 2009
New York
A very interesting column.. COMPLETELY NEUTRAL
Be sure to Read the Poem at the end.

Charley Reese's final column for the Orlando Sentinel...
He has been a journalist for 49 years.
He is retiring and this is HIS LAST COLUMN.

Be sure to read the Tax List at the end.

This is about as clear and easy to understand as it can be. The article below is completely neutral, neither anti-republican or democrat. Charlie Reese, a retired reporter for the Orlando Sentinel, has hit the nail directly on the head, defining clearly who it is that in the final analysis must assume responsibility for the judgments made that impact each one of us every day. It's a short but good read. Worth the time. Worth remembering!

545 vs. 300,000,000 People
-By Charlie Reese

Politicians are the only people in the world who create problems and then campaign against them.

Have you ever wondered, if both the Democrats and the Republicans are against deficits, WHY do we have deficits?

Have you ever wondered, if all the politicians are against inflation and high taxes, WHY do we have inflation and high taxes?

You and I don't propose a federal budget. The President does.

You and I don't have the Constitutional authority to vote on appropriations. The House of Representatives does.

You and I don't write the tax code, Congress does.

You and I don't set fiscal policy, Congress does.

You and I don't control monetary policy, the Federal Reserve Bank does.

One hundred senators, 435 congressmen, one President, and nine Supreme Court justices equates to 545 human beings out of the 300 million are directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country.

I excluded the members of the Federal Reserve Board because that problem was created by the Congress. In 1913, Congress delegated its Constitutional duty to provide a sound currency to a federally chartered, but private, central bank.

I excluded all the special interests and lobbyists for a sound reason. They have no legal authority. They have no ability to coerce a senator, a congressman, or a President to do one cotton-picking thing. I don't care if they offer a politician $1 million dollars in cash. The politician has the power to accept or reject it. No matter what the lobbyist promises, it is the legislator's responsibility to determine how he votes.

Those 545 human beings spend much of their energy convincing you that what they did is not their fault. They cooperate in this common con regardless of party.

What separates a politician from a normal human being is an excessive amount of gall. No normal human being would have the gall of a Speaker, who stood up and criticized the President for creating deficits. The President can only propose a budget. He cannot force the Congress to accept it.

The Constitution, which is the supreme law of the land, gives sole responsibility to the House of Representatives for originating and approving appropriations and taxes. Who is the speaker of the House? John Boehner. He is the leader of the majority party. He and fellow House members, not the President, can approve any budget they want. If the President vetoes it, they can pass it over his veto if they agree to.

It seems inconceivable to me that a nation of 300 million cannot replace 545 people who stand convicted -- by present facts -- of incompetence and irresponsibility. I can't think of a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 545 people. When you fully grasp the plain truth that 545 people exercise the power of the federal government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist.

If the tax code is unfair, it's because they want it unfair.

If the budget is in the red, it's because they want it in the red.

If the Army & Marines are in Iraq and Afghanistan it's because they want them in Iraq and Afghanistan ...

If they do not receive social security but are on an elite retirement plan not available to the people, it's because they want it that way.

There are no insoluble government problems.

Do not let these 545 people shift the blame to bureaucrats, whom they hire and whose jobs they can abolish; to lobbyists, whose gifts and advice they can reject; to regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power. Above all, do not let them con you into the belief that there exists disembodied mystical forces like "the economy," "inflation," or "politics" that prevent them from doing what they take an oath to do.

Those 545 people, and they alone, are responsible.

They, and they alone, have the power.

They, and they alone, should be held accountable by the people who are their bosses.

Provided the voters have the gumption to manage their own employees...

We should vote all of them out of office and clean up their mess!

Charlie Reese is a former columnist of the Orlando Sentinel Newspaper.

What you do with this article now that you have read it... is up to you.
This might be funny if it weren't so true.
Be sure to read all the way to the end:

Tax his land,
Tax his bed,
Tax the table,
At which he's fed.

Tax his tractor,
Tax his mule,
Teach him taxes
Are the rule.

Tax his work,
Tax his pay,
He works for
peanuts anyway!

Tax his cow,
Tax his goat,
Tax his pants,
Tax his coat.

Tax his ties,
Tax his shirt,
Tax his work,
Tax his dirt.

Tax his tobacco,
Tax his drink,
Tax him if he
Tries to think.

Tax his cigars,
Tax his beers,
If he cries
Tax his tears.

Tax his car,
Tax his gas,
Find other ways
To tax his ass.

Tax all he has
Then let him know
That you won't be done
Till he has no dough.

When he screams and hollers;
Then tax him some more,
Tax him till
He's good and sore.

Then tax his coffin,
Tax his grave,
Tax the sod in
Which he's laid...

Put these words
Upon his tomb,
'Taxes drove me
to my doom...'

When he's gone,
Do not relax,
Its time to apply
The inheritance tax.

Accounts Receivable Tax
Building Permit Tax
CDL license Tax
Cigarette Tax
Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Excise Taxes
Federal Income Tax
Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Gasoline Tax (currently 44.75 cents per gallon)
Gross Receipts Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inheritance Tax
Inventory Tax
IRS Interest Charges IRS Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Liquor Tax
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Personal Property Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service Charge Tax
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
Sales Tax
School Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)
Telephone Federal Excise Tax
Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax
Telephone Federal, State and Local Surcharge Taxes
Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Charges Tax
Telephone State and Local Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax

Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago, & our nation was the most prosperous in the world.
We had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids.

What in the heck happened? Can you spell 'politicians?'

I hope this goes around THE USA at least 545 times!!! YOU can help it get there!!!



RIP Brian
Feb 22, 2001
I think there's a lot of wisdom in what he writes concerning politicians...and the tax poem helps to illustrate how deep governments dig into citizens' pockets these days!


Is That Better?
Mar 6, 2007
somewhere on the planet
I have never been able to get past one serious fact. These 545 people that run the country are "Our Employees".

We struggle to pay every new tax, we struggle to afford basic needs, like a home (whether rented or paid for), we work very hard to afford health insurance (although more and more people are having to give it up due to out of control health care costs), and yet our society seems to forget one important fact.

These 545 people are living better than most of the rest of us, they earn much more than the average citizen, they have a better health care than a lot of our citizens. And on and on.

And, like so many others, I have no clue how to "fix" the problem.

These 545 people that run the country are "Our Employees". sigh


Ueber Meister
Jan 30, 2007
Texas, USA
It would be a wonderful thing if we could figure out how to get rid of these 'employees' and hire some new ones with some common sense and one ounce of integrity.

Being one of the 545 is the best job in the world. You get lots of money, perks etc and have to answer to no one. And when you decide that you don't want to act like you're working, you can retire and still get paid by the gov. and make big bucks on the lecture circuit. What a way to make a living!

And I have been given the privilege of watching a once great nation slide right down the crapper! Now how cool it that!


RIP Brian
Feb 22, 2001
The discipline and controls on most politicians don't seem adequate to the task, and my perception is that keeping these power-hungry big spenders in check is mainly the responsibility of their peers...perhaps with exceptions that end up before the courts.

On the ancient principle of "who guards the guards themselves" (Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?) that would not seem the best way. And the bigger majority a political party has, the greater its arrogance appears to become.

The greatest respect for the taxpayer really only surfaces when the proverbial has already hit the fan...or an election approaches!

An independent judiciary and a critical and alert media at least help in making politicians a little more wary, and hopefully conscious of their responsibilities to their constituents rather than the party whip.

In some countries there is also an independent body appointed under the constitution which without fear or favour investigates and exposes bad government, ordering redress. That takes enormous courage on the part of the leader of such a body and true integrity to remain impervious to pressure from governments who may want to cover up their mistakes.

Democracy is to my mind undoubtedly the best political system humanity has yet evolved, but government profligacy and excessive political interference in our lives is currently running wild and needs to be curbed imo.

Like others here, I'm not sure just how that could be achieved.

If you think about it, the public are actually presented with candidates by the major political parties and then given the opportunity to vote for their favourite. Perhaps the electorate is too busy with their lives (making money to pay more tax and health insurance LOL) to be more involved in politics - apathy certainly seems to be a factor to my eye.


Banned User - flaming
Jul 2, 2010
Term limits would go a long way in stopping this ridiculous cycle of politicians spending tax money on social programs in order to get re-elected. Without needing to worry about re-election then maybe politicians would do the common sense/common good things that need to be done to correct our direction.


You type well loads
Oct 14, 2004
United Kingdom
That list is short compared to the UK. Whilst keeping their promise not to increase income tax "new labour" introduced a load of "stealth" taxes in ONE TERM of office that is longer than the list above. No-one really knows how many exist, not even the TAXMAN!


Dormant account
Oct 25, 2010
nce post

but I'm sorry... you didn't pay your 'interesting post' tax. send your government $5 immediately or I'll have the mods delete it ;)


Forum Cheermeister
Staff member
Jun 30, 1998
The numbers are a little off since 64% of the registered voters in the States vote (out of about 200 million people registered or eligible to be registered). But yeah, 300+ million people are represented and controlled/affected by these politicians' decisions.

But we shouldn't forget about the State and local governments as well. I find these at times more effective or reflective of the wishes of the constituents. You want to ban smoking at the beach? - it's a bit easier to accomplish than getting the US to pull out of Afghanistan or whatever.

As for taxes, try living in Europe. You'll be on the next plane home :p

We even have church tax. You have to register at the local city hall; declare your religion - and this is reported to the federal government. If you belong to the big two, Catholic or Protestant, you'll be paying a monthly tax. :what:


Complaints (PAB) Manager
Staff member
Jan 20, 2004
If you belong to the big two, Catholic or Protestant, you'll be paying a monthly tax. :what:

Just out of curiosity what if your religion is "none"? No tax? Sounds good to me. :thumbsup:


Dormant account
Jul 27, 2007
/derail/ Have misplaced my "thanks" button...So THANK YOU 4 of a kind for sharing this. /derail/

@ they tax aethists? wiccans? So, doesn't this break some kind of law about separation of church and state?

I've just recently had a go around with my local Congressman concerning state disability. I've worked for over 30 years, and paid into the state disability fund, and have never collected. Now, when I've had a life altering health issue, I find out I'm not eligible to collect as I worked a total of 24 days in the last 5 months. I don't wish to "contribute" anymore cause the system f*cking sucks and doesn't help those who have faithfully paid. My Congressman's reply, "Contact an attorney who specializes in disability rejections." DUH! I haven't worked=no money to pay a lawyer! And I elected this politician, why?????

Rant over...sorry!


Newbie member
Sep 22, 2010
United Kingdom
I was discussing earlier today how mostly 'bad' people would want the powers that a politician has and so we are governed by mostly 'bad' people.

Can't see a 'thanks' button in this thread so 'thx' to OP.


Ueber Meister
Jan 30, 2007
Texas, USA

You can find a disability lawyer that will only charge you if you win you disability claim and they can only charge you a certain percentage up to $5000 if you win. Been there and done that already with my Significant Other.

If you have any questions, PM me and I will see if I can help.


Dormant account
Jan 21, 2009
somewhere else
Great article 4ofakind thank you. We'll call us 'The Country of a Thousand Kings' give or take. And aside from some other possibly fun ways to rid ourselves of these self appointed creeps, greasemonkey's term limits suggestion is probably the only way to put an end to it peacefully and without the mess of tar and feathers of course. :thumbsup: