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Carol Shea-Porter - Where is our tax money? 

A debate has been raging about the proper role of government and the proper government use of our taxes.  The recession that began in early 2007 under the Bush Administration and then dramatically deepened after the Wall Street fiasco in October 2008 has brought many more Americans into this debate, and it is affecting the political scene.   

Republicans ran in 2010 on a tea-party platform that stated basically two positions, one being that they would never stop tax breaks for the very rich and corporations. The other was that the federal government does nothing good with our money, and it should be shrunk to the size that it “could be drowned in the bathtub,” as Grover Norquist, the founder of Americans for Tax Reform, says. (He is the one who got almost every  Republican, including both NH Representatives, to sign his "no taxes ever" oath.)  Presidential candidate Ron Paul and the tea-party congressman from New Hampshire’s First District want to abolish the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Education, and the Internal Revenue Service, which happens to be the funding source for our whole federal government.  At this point, reasonable people might look around our state and ask themselves who is right, and where is their tax money? 

Our federal tax money is all over our state, serving people, small businesses and corporations, and helping local and state government provide services. Where is that federal money?

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard has received an enormous amount of money to protect our country.  I personally had one single earmark in 2008 that was for almost $10,000,000, for a consolidated components facility that is currently under construction.  These federal tax dollars also create jobs, and these workers spend money in our local economy.  

BAE Systems is a defense contractor, and their NH plants depend almost exclusively on federal contracts. They are the largest manufacturer here, creating thousands of jobs.  GE also has federal money and they create jobs here also, along with many other defense-related businesses who receive our tax money.

Low-income citizens receive health care at Community Health Centers across the state, in places like Manchester, Somersworth, Portsmouth, and Conway. Our federal tax dollars help to fund them.  Our congressmen voted to cut funding while praising the community centers for their cost-saving services. Our tax dollars have provided equipment and building money, as well as funding for uncompensated care.

Transportation is a challenge in our state, and many rural citizens have difficulty getting to work, to the doctor, or to a store.  Our taxes have been returned to NH to help build transit in our state. There is federal money for highways here, and that also creates jobs, but our federal tax money helps people get around on buses, too.  There is now bus transportation from Conway to Wolfeboro via Ossipee, and they used stimulus money—our tax money—to buy the buses.  An assistant store manager said the buses are bringing customers to his store.  This has also created more jobs in these communities.

New Hampshire firefighters, police officers, and other first responders can provide better services to our communities because our tax dollars helped them get better equipment and better technology.  There have been federal grants and earmarks, and also stimulus money to support services and to pay salaries.  Manchester, Rochester, Dover, Portsmouth, and many smaller towns applied for and received federal help that really was our money coming back to serve us.

Education is the key to prosperity in New Hampshire, so federal investment in education helps at every level.  Our taxes come back to help our smallest and poorest citizens get a chance to succeed.  Our dollars help every community put equipment in schools, feed kids who cannot learn if they are hungry, and educate those with extra challenges.  Our tax money helps provide clean-energy buses to carry our next generation of NH leaders to and from UNH, and provides the necessary money for innovative and exciting research that will benefit our state and country.  Our taxes also help provide loans to students—a real investment in New Hampshire’s future.

We benefit when we “pool” our money.  As citizens, we have a common interest in creating and sustaining a great nation that can pay its bills and invest in its people.  Clean up duplicate efforts. Catch the cheats. Hold recipients of our money accountable. But Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. had it right when he said, “Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society.”


Former Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter represented New Hampshire’s First District from 2007-2011, she is seeking a third term in the November, 2012 election.  She wrote the proposal for and established a non-profit, social service agency, which continues to serve all ages.  She taught politics and history and is a strong supporter of Medicare and Social Security.

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Reader Comments (8)

Education is the key to prosperity if you work for the education industry, are a lobbyist for that industry, a union hack for that industry, or a pandering politician willing to repeat talking points in exchange for votes from people who proser from that industry or the unions that prosper from that industry.
January 7, 2012 | Registered CommenterEd Naile
Ohhh Caaaarollllll –
Rather than waste billions – or are we up to trillions now that your good comrade Barry took over – sending our money to Washington D. C. so they can dole it back out to the many states as the Grand Pooh-bahs see fit, why not let the good folks keep their shekels and spend them as they see fit? Maybe you could spend a bit of your free time – I hear you have lots of that now – and research how much of a take the apparatchik gets in their shakedown before the "redistribute" to a few of their favorite friends. Nothin' says charity like a good ol' fashion mugging by The Mob!
– C. dog bites Nanny's caring hand that does not feed him
January 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterC. dog
Ms. S-P, unless you are willing to take money to fund your moving to another state, or country, or planet, please keep your hands out of my pockets; let the unions continue to line yours.
January 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDagny Taggart
Ohhhhh Carooolll –
One last tidbit, taxes are the first price you pay when you lose freedom.
– C. dog
January 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterC. dog
I have the answer to that question, "Where is our tax money?" It went to Hawaii with Broke Obumbler and family. How many millions did it cost to fly the first "fambly" to Hah-vy-ee? and their plethora of staff people, logisitcs personnel, Secret Service...not to mention all those people could not be at home with their families so that the Obumblers could have a Hawaiian vacation.

Did you know, Carol SEIU-Porker, that George HW Bush and George W Bush always spent Christmases at Camp David with their extended families? In that way, Most of the White House staff, support and logistics personnel and security people could spend Christmas with their families? But ah WTF, right? its only tax money.....You are so un-smart.
January 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRick Olson
"Those who criticize the cost of Obama’s Christmas vacation don’t want you to know that George W. Bush spent at least $20 million taxpayer dollars just on flights to his ranch in Crawford.

The right wing has been outraged at the four million dollar plus price tag for Obama’s family Christmas vacation, and they constantly hold George W. Bush up as an example of how thrifty a president should be when going on vacation.

The problem is that W. wasn’t thrifty. He was the most expensive vacation president in US history. Not only did Bush spend more days on vacation than any other president, but he used Air Force One more often while on vacation than any other president. "


I guess we can all be "un-smart" sometimes, Rick.
January 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTroll
Lies? Leftist assertions with no sources....here is one...

Like I said, It went to Hawaii with Broke Obumbler and family. How many millions did it cost to fly the first "fambly" to Hah-vy-ee? and their plethora of staff people, logisitcs personnel, Secret Service...not to mention all those people could not be at home with their families so that the Obumblers could have a Hawaiian vacation.
January 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRick Olson
I'm not reading 88 pages of BS. What point are you trying to make with this link?

And why weren't you crying when GW did the same thing with his staff?
"Of the 77 total "vacation" trips the former president made to his Texas ranch while in office, nine of them — all or part of 69 days — came during his first year as president in 2001, according to Knoller."
When we all complained that he was taking way too many trips, we were told, "it's okay. It's a working vacation." So 77 times he brought his staff down to Texas for "vacation" at what astronomical cost and he gets a pass? Spare me your crocodile tears, hypocrite.
January 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTroll

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