A Conservative, Collegiate Manifesto

Disclaimer: I’m angry. This blog would probably be much better filtered and thought out if I had taken time to calm down and think things over, but as a result it would have been less raw, and thus less real. Please take this for what it is, a very angry rant about what is wrong with our government and some ways we need to fix it.

Today, I filed my tax return. The reasons I did so so late are not important, however I filed an extension and thus followed the proper procedures. For the first time, I had to pay the government money. I actually made less money this year than last, but because I had not taken enough out for taxes already, I had to send in a (digital) check.

Here’s the problem. I’m a college student. I made less than five thousand dollars last year, and barely more than four of that came from wages that I “earned.” The rest, five thousand and change, came from two sources: 1.) A job I do for my college to earn scholarship (a long and annoying story in itself) and 2.) Scholarship I earned as a high school student, and have continued to earn in College, which exceeds tuition and goes towards room and board.

Here are the issues with those two sources: First, the “scholarship job” doesn’t actually pay me, it “pays me” through the scholarship I already earned.  Second, the fact that scholarship towards room and board is taxable short of a punishment for academic success; to argue any differently is to argue falsely.

Here’s why I’m angry. Right now, America needs some academic success. In a country which is continuing to sink deeper and deeper towards economic depression.  People need to be encouraged to go through higher education and get degrees that will help stimulate our economy.

Instead, I’m being told that I’m not doing my part. Instead, I’m being told that I need to give a little extra. Instead, I’m being told: “not quite enough.”

The amount of tax I paid is $200. I have no problem saying that because, hey, it’s all of our money now! The amount of tax I paid is literally nothing to the federal government. I hate using the word literally in a non-literal context, but here I am not. The United States probably spends $200 every nano-second or so. It sounds hyperbolic, but it simply isn’t.

$200 in my life, however, is enormous. $200 in my life is about half of what I’ll probably have to pay for textbooks in the coming semester. $200 is two phone payments. Living a life where I’m mostly confined to making money during the summer, right now $200 is a whole lot of money to me.

Here’s my point. The fact of the matter is that what was once a country which encouraged individualism, hard work, and success has become a country which breeds laziness, submission, and dependence.  The government pays people who don’t work; pays people who have too many kids and can’t support them; pays people who make bad decisions, but it takes money from me.

This is why we absolutely must remove President Obama from office. I’m not saying that paying taxes is wrong. I’m not even saying that I shouldn’t have to pay taxes. I am, however, saying that it is wrong to punish me financially for trying so hard to succeed, whereas others are supported for their failures.

I’m not blaming President Obama. I’m not saying that he made these tax codes happen. I’m sure these tax codes existed long before he was in office, and even if they didn’t, he didn’t craft them himself. I’m saying that President Obama would see no problem with my story. If I told the President this story, if President Obama read this blog, he would say: “you’re just doing your part and giving a little to make life better for all of us.” That’s wrong. Everyone else can make life better for them. It’s what I’m trying to do for me. And the fact   of the matter is that the government doesn’t make it any easier for them to succeed by supporting their failures than it does for me by taking the money I’ve earned. 

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