Listening to the grousing in thedoctors' dining room at the hospital,you'd think the mostgrievous wrong done to our professionwas the imposition of income taxes.The area of personal economic activitythat warrants the most passion andeffort is the avoidance of taxes—notthe evasion of taxes, because that finedistinction, we are told, defines theborder of illegal activity.
Although this country was initiatedon the principle of "no taxation withoutrepresentation," many Americans, doctorsincluded, aren't too happy abouttaxation with representation, either.Often, they forget about the high cost ofthe things we like and therefore take forgranted the many services that only thegovernment can provide. Instead, wefocus on the things we don't like and donot want to pay for, instead of focusingon the way we can minimize our incometax obligation. And the media is full ofthe conflicts that occur in our democracyas we contend over the "whats" andthe "hows" of our communal spending.We acknowledge that governing ourselvesis a messy business, but seeing itdone, especially with the waste and foolishnessthat goes along with such affairs,is tough to watch. That's one of the reasonswhy we like our local congressionalrepresentative who obtains what theycan for our local interest, but we disdainthe legislative bodies that actually haveto hammer out the compromises.
Look at the Bright Side
Coupled with all of this is the factthat the income tax system itself iscomplicated, expensive, and, dependingupon whose ox is being gored atthe moment, unfair. No wonder wegripe about paying and feel like we'refighting an uphill battle.
Okay, so that touches upon some ofthe reasons why we don't like taxesand why we are in denial about meetingthem head-on. The good news isthat recent research confirms that peoplewith a positive attitude have a hugecompetitive advantage—in this case,maxing-out the money you can savethrough tax planning. And make nomistake, for those doctors who cheerup and take action instead of just complaining,you can pay yourself a bundlefor your tax planning efforts.
Worth the Read
Physician's Money Digest
You can start today by reading thisissue of ,focusing on end-of-year how-tos. Shiftgears, take what you can, and run withit. Call your CPA. They might beshocked to hear from you at this timeof year, especially with a positiveapproach, but it's all good. With themoney you save, you can do somethingfun—it would be on Uncle Sam. Andyou'll be smiling the next time youhear a tax-oriented grouse fest in thedoctors' dining room.