Dear Crabby, Why Do We Pay Taxes?

Dear Crabby,

I know we’re getting close to the deadline, but I just started getting my taxes ready to file. My son asked why adults have to file them and I told him we’d ask you since you know everything. So… why do we have to pay income taxes?

Tina Tariff

Dear Ms. Tariff,

My dad always said the only two certainties in life are death and taxes. And boy, do taxes sure feel DearCrabbylike death sometimes. Especially if you end up having to pay—ouch! Hey, did you know taxes are actually due April 18 this year? So all you people racing to get them done by Friday can breathe… a little. And if you live in Maine and Massachusetts, yours aren’t due until April 19. As for why we have to pay them, well our taxes basically fund the government’s budget and pays for things like roads, schools, libraries, police and fire protection, and other special programs like welfare and social security. Pretty basic stuff. What I’m far more interested in is the Panama Papers situation, which I’m just glad someone had the sense not to call the whole stupid thing ‘Taxgate.’ Why must every scandal have ‘gate’ added to the end? The only appropriate ‘gate’ was Watergate because that was the name of the building that was broken into! That makes sense in my book. Just adding the word willy-nilly to every event doesn’t make it more newsworthy. And in case you’re wondering why it’s called the Panama Papers, it’s because the law firm, Mossack Fonseca, is located in Panama. See? Makes sense. This whole Panama mess was recently uncovered when some leaked documents saying a bunch of politicians and other Richie-riches have been using Mossack Fonseca for over 40 years to evade taxes and launder money. Turns out, the best place to do that is the British Virgin Islands, followed by Panama and the Bahamas. And people thought they were just good vacation spots! So, if it looks like you may not be able to file your taxes in time, I know of a law firm that can help you avoid paying them for years.

Hope my answer helps and good luck!
Dear Crabby

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Stuck in a rut? Need some biased advice from a crabby old baby-boomer? Read regularly by thousands and loved by some, Dear Crabby answers questions weekly to life's challenges. Send him a note at

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