People who earn money honestly, through their own hard work, are understandably grumpy whenever the tax season arrives. One can practically hear the collective mental scream of anguish almost everywhere: "No, no! Don't take my money!" To add insult to injury, doing the paperwork can be boring as hell.
Here in the Philippines, personal income tax can range from five to thirty-two percent. That's really, really low when you compare it to personal income tax rates in certain developed countries. According to the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Taxing Wages report, the top three countries where the average worker (single and childless) takes home less than half his salary or cost of employment in 2006 were Belgium (55.4%), Germany (52.5%) and Hungary (51%). Turkey, Poland, and France were the countries imposing the highest taxes on single-earner, dual-child married couples with average incomes. It isn't only income tax that's depressing. You also have to factor in everyday things like value-added tax, sales tax, service tax, etc. The good thing is that citizens of such countries can avail themselves of benefits and services like state-sponsored education and health care, which are funded from taxation.
Still, everyone moans and groans at the prospect of filing taxes. It's a fact of life for many people and it seems it will stay that way even if we all went riding naked on horseback in the streets (like legend says Lady Godiva did to protest against the heavy taxes levied on her husband's workers).
Hmmm. But that would be one hell of a street party, wouldn't it?