Quest Means Business   « Back to Blog Main
April 15, 2009
Posted: 1920 GMT

Today is Tax Day in the US, the day when tax returns and payments have to be made by midnight tonight. It's always a hoopla. It doesn't matter how long people have had, there is that pathetic scramble to beat the deadline. It got me thinking about the whole issue of tax....There is nothing pleasant about paying taxes. And it the more we pay the less pleasant if seems. To be sure, those of us who earn more expect that we will have a greater burden. But whastever we pay, we want value for money. And today many are seriously questioning what we get for what we pay.

IN some parts of the world taxes have been traditionally high, but then there has been sterling provision of education, health care and social services. In other places, the taxes are low and you are expected to pay for everything else.

Which is the best ? that depends on where you stand politically and I make no comment about that.

What I do know is that the current mega bailouts to be paid for someday and somehow. And we will ALL be paying more in taxes in the years ahead. Whether through high sin taxes on liquor and tobacco or directly through income.

Don't be fooled dear friends. This crises is neither pain free now nor in the future. We had a very good party. The hangover will last longer.

Now then – over to you..... are YOU happy with the taxes you pay and the value you get. Here are some that came via @richardquest on twitter – add more of your own.


JonTrygveH@richardquest in norway, it's not unusual to pay 50%incometax. We ALSO have a few % fortunetax. Bad for the retired without much income!

mcsilly@richardquest I make some$ online.Don't live more than 4months in any country(=no benefits in paying taxes)! Should I pay to random country?

bizzz2bizzz@richardquest here in ESTONIA we all) pay way too much in taxes and that I don't ever feel like I get my money's worth from the federal,

mihai_1@richardquest Germany again! I'll get married next week; I'll pay 500 eur less, she'll pay 300 less on taxes. +800 on our net income! Cool

squawkbox@richardquest Countries with higher rates of tax appear to have a much better quality of life (Denmark, Sweden etc.) maybe its not so bad!

robohamster@richardquest I would pay more tax in th UK if they would renationalise our 19th Century public transport system!

winterwhitefox@richardquest I live in one of the smallest states in the USA and i pay $8,000.00 bucks a year on property taxes,no,the house/land isnt big

klaaserikzimmer@richardquest I´m German, recently moved to argentina. NOW I esteem the value I get in Germany for my taxes which actually is really good.

danmsonda@richardquest In the Netherlands, we pay our taxes happily and the services we get from government in return are just superb!

Rikki_ND@richardquest Taxes are necessary & I don't think we pay too much in taxes right now. Small price to pay for freedoms we enjoy in the US

rahulvarshneya@richardquest taxes in india, there's scope for a big reduction!

milhealth@richardquest You are kidding right? (:-)

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Filed under: Banking •Business •Quest Means Business

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remi   April 15th, 2009 7:56 pm ET

In Nigeria, the counter-logic against tax payment is why suffer double jeopardy when you are effectively functioning as a government providing your own water (by drilling a borehole), electricity (thanks to your noisy generator), etc.

Leslie Partridge   April 15th, 2009 8:04 pm ET

The taxes are going more and more to those who do not work and to the immigrants who burden the system whilst paying little or nothing into the tax man's pot. We are all getting stiffed in the long run. Change the immigration to zero population increase. Change the tax brackets to FLAT. Everyone pays same percentage. Cut out the tax supported welfare for other countries until we get our house in order.

Blond Rocker, USA   April 15th, 2009 8:37 pm ET

I paid more taxes in the past two years than I ever paid in my life and got less when I needed help most.

I sense, we in USA pay more and get less especially for health care, which is WAY out of control. The insurance carriers are having a fit – they don't want to change status quo.

POTUS says he will fix health care in USA but if he can't get out of economy bubble, we are all in for a bad sad time here.

Brings to mind when other POTUS's went into their bubbles: LBJ Bubble – Vietnam, Nixon Bubble – Watergate, Clinton Bubble (at the end of his term) – Lewinsky. Once they go in the bubble, they rarely come out to hear the true voices and needs of the people. All they have is their staff and YES men/women....Gee, he's only been POTUS 4 months and he might be headed for the bubble...poor thing, poor us...

If the economy was healthy, would he have already given the beltway bandits legislation for health care reform?

Do my cousins in France and UK pay less and get more?

And yes, the party is over, and the hangover will last a long time, so they (you) say. Don't they tax the booze now? I gave it up, so I don't know....tea for and peace, BR – "Got To Get Better In A Little While"

Barbara   April 16th, 2009 3:41 am ET

I live in San Francisco and am int eh highest tax bracket. Yes, paying taxes is painful, but I would gladly pay the percentage I'm paying now if we had better social services (especially health service) like those in many European countries.

P.S. How does one invite Richard to follow on Twitter so we can tweet directly to him?

Peter Vaz   April 16th, 2009 5:33 am ET

Mr. Quest- Why is the USA so much after income tax,road tax,open skies tax,burial tax? Are the taxi man also forced to apply brake tax....why USA is not learning a bit from India's system of taxation. The Indian expats are without fetters of "tax" as long as struggle out of country....And what a great privilege for the leaders you know? – stash all the money to the bunker in Swiss banks or if cash overflow- name it on kith or kin...taxes are evaded....and the genius idea is to distribute wealth to buy election votes!. Is this methodology applicable in USA? Is Mr. Obama planing to sign a decree to pay rest in peace tax, hell,heaven or purgatory tax? Please give us some to recover from all the taxes before the recession deadline.

Manuel Vilhena   April 16th, 2009 7:29 pm ET


In Portugal, here I have been working for 8 years, if you earn €2.000 per month, which is above average; you pay 17% for the country (government) and 11% for Social Security.



Lidia   April 18th, 2009 4:18 am ET

What did you make of all the Tea Parties? It was a huge thing, however you feel about it, don't you think? I'm curious what will come out of it.

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