As early as the 1960s, it was recognized that low-wage earners should be able to file their federal income tax returns in a simpler manner. The “short form” return was established, and it was sent out annually via US Mail with instructions.
Today is not the day! The Internal Revenue Service ceased mailing paper forms and instructions in 2010 except upon special request.
What is clear is that the IRS, as well as the New Jersey Department of the Treasury, now prefer that you download and/or file forms electronically.
The IRS strongly encourages taxpayers to use its “free-file” system, which is administered by a number of for-profit vendors. However, the catch is that an increasing number of filers’ returns are not “free.” If your income exceeds a certain threshold or you are required to file additional schedules, electronic filing may require additional fees or the purchase of a company’s software. Occasionally, this is necessitated by IRA distributions or investment income, and many of us have stock market investments. Filling out the numerous online forms becomes far from free. Last year, I paid $203.
Why, as in the past, cannot forms and a simplified booklet be mailed to senior citizen households? Is it true that everyone owns a computer and a printer?
The New Jersey Form 1040 is four pages long, longer than the federal Form 1040 SR (designed for senior citizens). The paper instruction booklets in both cases can exceed 100 pages.
All of this is necessary, even if you are not filthy rich and your tax returns indicate that you owe no tax. Then, if you need to apply separately for the state property tax rebate and/or the senior tax freeze, there will be additional filing.
Turnersville, Gerald Keer
There is little worthwhile going on at the United Nations.
I’m just curious as to where the United Nations has been during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As far as I am aware, the United Nations charter is concerned with peacekeeping.
Following World War II, the US established the 38th Parallel and the division between South and North Korea, precipitating the 1950s war that ended in a cease-fire. Since then, with the exception of minor incursions over the years, there have been no major outbreaks of fighting.
The United Nations played no role in putting an end to the North Vietnamese invasion and eventual takeover of South Vietnam — albeit with China’s support.
Despite the United Nations’ intervention in Somalia’s civil war in the 1990s, it was a shambles. United Nations forces sat in a soccer stadium during the Black Hawk Down incident, where US soldiers were killed.
The United Nations’ only action against Ukraine has been to expel Russia from the Human Rights Council, with China voting “no.” Russians have committed genocide, and yet the international body responds with meaningless rhetoric. Not just NATO members, but the entire international community, should have been more proactive and intervened when Russia amassed 100,000 troops on the Ukraine border, as Vladimir Putin made it abundantly clear that an invasion was imminent.
This has devolved into a mass murder of civilians, rather than a conventional war. Over the years, the United Nations has served no useful purpose and should be disbanded.