I mean, clearly, this is not an usual situation. Lots of folks don't pay their taxes - or pay them, but not quite all of them - or even have liens against them for back taxes due for 16 years.
I have to admit that I'm feeling a little silly because I, personally, am not one of those people. I pay my taxes every single year. I'm never happy about it, but I do it. It always bothers me to see how much of my pay has gone to fund programs over which I have little to no control or wars for which I didn't vote and don't support. But still, I pay my taxes.
And now I'm feeling kind of silly that I've paid everything I owed every year.
And then I ask myself, so what if someone got away with not paying their taxes? Does it mean they're not fit to run an agency in our government's administration? Just because they cheat on one thing - just because they consider themselves above the law (and, let's face it, more clever than I), does that mean they can't uphold the law and make good, honorable decisions for America?
Ummm....you bet it means all of that and more. As my grandmother used to say - "Liars lie and cheaters cheat, and they can no more change that about themselves than a zebra can change its stripes."
Is it okay if they pay their taxes now, when they (or their spouse/partner) are about to take office for the Obama administration? Does that make it okay? Were they thinking that if they didn't say anything, we wouldn't? Or was it really just so much a part of the way they live their entire lives that they actually forgot they cheat on their income taxes?
I have to admit that I liked Tom Daschle. Actually, I still do like him. And I am really, really, really sorry to see him get soooo close to that brass ring and have to let it go (again?). But I'm also forced to think that maybe he's not as smart as I thought he was.
And the last thing I'm looking at around this is Obama - with whom I remain completely and utterly enchanted and about whom I remain filled with hope for us. But what was he thinking? Surely he wasn't thinking it would be okay for a person who commits tax fraud to hold these high level public positions? Surely he meant it when he said, on MSNBC, that he knows he screwed up and that the era of responsibility doesn't mean that he won't make a mistake - it means, rather, that he'll take responsibility both for the mistake and for making sure it doesn't happen again.
And as someone who constantly makes mistakes, I was cheering for him when he made that statement, relating to him on a level that perfect people can't understand. Hey - we both screw up stuff.
I always mean it when I say it won't happen again. Surely he meant it too.