Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Facing the bogeyman

Yesterday I decided to deal with one of my nightmares: the IRS. I still owe back taxes from 2001-2002 when the Internet crashed. While I was working, over the last five years, I was paying on a monthly installment plan. But this month there was no way that I could pay the fee. Not if I wanted to feed the cats and have food for myself. Since when did the IRS become a priority over my survival? I asked myself. Up until that point it hadn't occurred to me that I could call them and discuss the fact that I couldn't pay. It was time to face the bogeyman.

So with a knot in my stomach, I called the IRS phone number. There was a 15-minute wait, which made the knot even worse. Finally I heard a live voice asking if he could help me. I explained my situation. His first response, in a tone meant to engender fear, was, "You don't want to have a lean, do you?" I had to laugh to myself. A lean on what? I don't own a house. My car is old and not worth much. I don't have a paycheck coming in. Sorry, IRS. You can't scare me. And there was such a freedom in that realization.

I wound up getting a two-month deferment, just in case things work out and I can actually continue my payments to them. But if my financial situation doesn't improve, then I guess I'll have to call the IRS up again--but there will be no fear in that. It seems to me that the powers that be are blowing it. In order to control the population you have to keep people afraid. In order to keep people afraid they have to buy into the insane rules that, let's face it, are not for own good. So we are presented with bogeymen--like bankruptcy (been there, wasn't a big deal), lower credit scores (doesn't matter if you never intend to get a loan), not being able to get a credit card (now that's a blessing. I've given all of mine up)--to keep us obeying the rules. To keep us in line. To keep us in the herd. Bahhhhh. Bahhhhh. This sheep is not following the herd into the slaughter house.

So the good news, as our economy goes downhill and people lose their homes, their jobs, their money, is that we are being freed from illusions so that we can discover what really matters: family, friends, community, love, peace, freedom, joy...

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