I admit, I try not to bring politics into work. And I have a number of friends with whom I don't share political beliefs. But I've had two people complaining about tax things today, and I'm finding it funny which I'm having an easier time with.
My best friend, growing up, her family was quite conservative, in the traditional sense of the word. Her older brother has been bitching and moaning for a few days straight about his taxes, and this morning made a comment about how he's always paid his bills on time, not like those welfare moms. Despite the momentary restraint I had to exhibit in not making a snarky comment about him being lucky to have never NEEDED support like that, he's actually the one I'm not having issues with - I find it easy enough to tune him out. I know we'll never agree, and so I can set that aside.
My co-worker, on the other hand, is a Republican, and a Catholic, but has often professed that she doesn't always agree with either her party or her church. When Obama was elected, she wasn't excited, but she was hopeful, and (aside from comments about loving Palin because she "says stupid things and makes me laugh") wasn't really a fan of either candidate. But today, right off, she started on about how grateful she was that Obama would only be in office for another 3 years, and then we'd get somebody else, because this tax reform is killing her. It's was a hard argument; it actually involved money going to her daughter, which would understandably make somebody upset. But it became clear that she had some real and significant misunderstandings about a)how taxes work, b)how scholarships work, c)how trust funds work and d)what tax reform has actually been instituted by Obama.
Long story short: she's getting screwed by the fact that she and her husband chose the wrong financial accounts to put their daughters' money in, given the time frame and use that they had for it, and the tax laws that were instituted under the Shrub.
She was obviously quite upset, and very much taken aback by my stating that I have no problem with trust funds being taxed, and that I very much agree with the idea that people who make and have more should pay more into the system, and that as I've gone up in the food chain, while I'm not precisely gleeful about having more taken out of my paycheck, I understand the good it goes to, and the fact that it goes, in addition to supporting the structure of our country, to programs that will help kids who were in situations like me. That, if it weren't for a system where there was enough money, I likely wouldn't be sitting at this desk next to her.
It ended with her saying that it was her kids' money, and that nothing was going to make her happy about that - tax her if they like, but don't tax her kids (keeping aside the fact that this conversation was regarding her 18 year old daughter, which is kind of the point - she's not a kid anymore).
I've since done some research, and consulted a few people who Know More About These Things Than I Do, but I think it's pretty obvious that bringing it up again would only make things worse. I do like her, and I really don't have a problem with differing views - I just wish she had straight facts, and was able to understand that, while we may never agree on the idea of what is taxable and what isn't, it also isn't right to pin all her upset on the current administration.
So instead, I post about it here.