Taxes. Just the mere mention of that word makes the working man cringe. After slaving away for hours each day, he comes home with a salary that has been greatly reduced by withholding taxes. He buys food for his family and every single item of food he buys is also subjected to tax. Next thing you know, he’ll also be paying taxes for the air he breathes.
Though we dread it like a plague, taxes are much needed by the government to fund its social programs. These are used to provide health services to the underprivileged, to build more public schools and classrooms, to ensure our safety and to build roads and bridges. But are the taxes we pay really working for us? Yes, we do see construction workers wielding tools equipped with Delafield hydraulic hose to repair deteriorating roads. And yes, there are government hospitals providing free health care services to indigents. Public schools are being built and the old ones being improved. Unfortunately, these government services are still wanting of better quality and better service.
Of course, we can blame this on government officials who have vested interests and squander government funds that would have otherwise been used to improve the social programs of the government. But then, taxpayers, even the regular Juan, may also have a hand at this. The BIR estimates that as much as P42.1 billion is unpaid by suspected tax dodgers. These include not only wealthy businessmen but also other professionals and entrepreneurs. That’s P42.1 billion that could be used to build more classrooms and provide more medicines for the poor.
Now, before you ask whether your taxes are working for you, better make sure that you are paying your taxes.