Decisions, Consequences, Community

On a cold stay-in day – I just re-found Richard Murphy’s blog on Tax and Economics. This very relevant to me at the moment because yesterday and today I MADE DECISIONS.

Ali and Louis in Guangzhou

I am going to go to China again – see the grandsons that I have not seen for more than a year – and I booked it for May / June. For reasons that are about the moronic necessary usual needs for visa, and it happening to be a time when my green card is being renewed, and how applying for a visa here in USA with a British passport involves lots of moronic necessary perfectly ordinary bureaucracy, I decided to go back to UK first. Lots of counting and calculating – and I made the bookings.

One thing leads to another doesn’t it when making decisions? Maybe the Law of Unintended Consequences, applies to me more often than I want to think.

What has this to do with tax? Read on…

Anyway, if I am travelling via UK, why not visit my sisters in Ireland and my friends in Cornwall and, and, … so why not stay there a while? I made another DECISION. It is ages since I have been in Edinburgh for summer and I want to see my friends there in person not Skype . While not like BI, they do have something called summer and being 20 degrees further north they also have glorious long twilights. I will stay all summer, and not come back to BI until after Labor Day in September.

Still have not told you about tax. Read on…

Well – you may not know it – here they call it asset rich and cash poor – sitting in a one room condo that costs more than a whole flat in Edinburgh – if I am not here in the summer season, someone else should be! So I made another DECISION. While I stay away from BI this summer I will rent to some nice person who would like to stay in my condo. [It does help to have a daughter-in-law who works in real estate.]

I will get paid for not being here. I become part of the USA tax system.

Now, I am not a neo-liberal, as you might have guessed from other posts. I believe we should pay tax, it is about our society, what sort of people we want to be.


By accident, decisions made, happily flicking through links here and there, I found: Tax due is not taxpayer’s money, it is the government’s. Here are a couple of quotes:

“let me make clear that there is taxpayer’s money: it is the money they have the absolute right to enjoy after they have paid their tax. I genuinely struggle to see why some have such difficulty in understanding this glaringly obvious concept.”

That’s what I will have – this is what will help pay for my trip.

And the second quote – Oh Yes – these are Richard Murphy’s own italics:

…the reality is that it reflects something broader than that. It is our belief that we are people who live in community. But that community is not made up of those immediately known to us, as neoliberalism might, at best,  suppose. We think that  community between people known and unknown is something that is a pre-requisite for a life well lived.

Isn’t that worth saying – we live in community between people known and unknown. Tell me what you think – do you agree with Richard, and me? Do you have a pre-requisite for a life well lived ? I suddenly feel full of gratitude, people like Richard that I do not know, people in China I might meet, everyone everywhere who reaches out.

What a good day!


3 thoughts on “Decisions, Consequences, Community

  1. Well now, sounds like a plan to me !!

    What an excellent decision.

    I do hope that I will catch a glimpse of you when you are here visiting Irene and Veronica.

    Travel well, arrive safely.

    Best love,




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