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Song Parodies -> "Darn It! Levying Me! (US Income Tax)"

Original Song Title:

"Sonnet 73"

Original Performer:

William Shakespeare

Parody Song Title:

"Darn It! Levying Me! (US Income Tax)"

Parody Written by:

Fiddlegirl and Tommy Turtle

The Lyrics

As TT always says every year when faced with the tax forms, "Sonnet a b*tch!"

This time of year, how graced are we! Behold--
I bellow, heave; not fun. Curse, fume, harangue
'Til dawn. I browse receipts, review the code [1]
Sleep ruined: up quite late: complete this thang [2]
Indeed, I see the sunrise first each day
And curse the ones that madeth IRS
Which line by line each cent doth take away
To “share the wealth”, and steal up all the rest
And feed the feast of Goldman; "Sachs", acquire
These sons of asses, from us, booty, pry
On my death-bed? Estate tax: ne'er expire [3]
We're doomed by that which passed by churlish lie [4]
Pi**ed now, and peeved: Let’s vote out this whole throng
And send to Hell this tax that grieves: So long! [5]
OS (Original Sonnet)

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou see'st the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death's second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see'st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie
As the death-bed whereon it must expire,
Consum'd with that which it was nourish'd by.
This thou perceiv'st, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

[1] The US Internal Revenue Tax Code, which according to various counts is somewhere between 3 million and 8 million words long. That's about ten times the length of the Judeo-Christian Bible, a hundred times the length of the Koran (Qu'ran), and almost as long as a Joe Biden speech (and makes about as much sense).

[2] "thang" = Fiddlegirlish for "thing"

[3] Even after you expire, the taxes don't.

[4] The first peacetime income tax in the US was proposed by Democrats (shocked -- we're *shocked*, we tell you!) in Congress in 1894. The next year, the US Supreme Court ruled that the tax was unconstitutional, because it was. Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution, which specifies Congress's power to tax, requires that, "Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States". In other words, you can't tax different people at different rates.

In addition, the Constitution specifically limited Congress' ability to impose direct taxes, by requiring Congress to distribute direct taxes in proportion to each state's census population. In other words, each state would be taxed according to its population, and each state would then be charged with raising the required revenue from its citizens. If this seems odd today, please note that the name of the country is *not* the United "People" Of America, it's the United "States" Of America. Why did we forget this?

A Constitutional Amendment was therefore required to satisfy the power-lust of Congress. To get the Amendment to pass, it was promised that it would always be a "soak the rich" tax, and that the middle class would hardly be affected. (Is it us, or is there an echo in here? -- that promise sounds awfully similar to some things said recently.)

The rate was 1% (*One* percent) on incomes up to $20,000, which in today's terms is about $433,000, thereby meeting that promise. The maximum rate was 7% on incomes over $500,000, which is well over $10 million in today's inflated dollars. With the promise that it would always be that way, the amendment was passed in 1913 -- oddly enough, this was the same year that the Federal Reserve was established. (See the link.)

The present *minimum* rate of 10% on the lowest-bracket taxpayers is greater than that applied to the ultra-wealthy when the tax began. The Government's batting average in keeping such promises: .000. For example, you're still paying an excise tax on vehicle tires that was supposed to be only for the duration of World War II. Didn't they sign some kind of treaty in 1946? -- but you're still paying that tax 64 years later. Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose. (The more things change, the more they stay the same.)

Please keep this in mind when hearing the present promises about the tax burden or cost of any new proposal -- like, say, Government health care?

[5] In both meanings: The tax code is "so long" (see [1] ), and "so long" = "good-bye!"

Believe it or not, the concept and most of the first draft were by the non-economist, FG. Surprised?

© 2010 Fiddlegirl and Tommy Turtle. All rights reserved. E-mail:

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Voting Results

Pacing: 4.5
How Funny: 4.5
Overall Rating: 4.5

Total Votes: 8

Voting Breakdown

The following represent how many people voted for each category.

    Pacing How Funny Overall Rating
 1   1
 2   0
 3   0
 4   0
 5   7

User Comments

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Old Man Ribber - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
Taxing! (Sonnet-a-b* A simplified tax code or flat tax would cause massive the I.R.S. ;D
Mark Scotti - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
'oh, wat empty, this new tax, wallet makes..."!!! Here's $555 to catch up.
Phil Nelson - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
555 Tacks
Hmmm - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
Who gave both FG's/TT's parodies ones? Does Riddlegirl work for the IRS or something?
Fiddlegirl - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
Thanks to OMR, Mark Scotti, and Phil Nelson! And, Hmmm, now let's be fair. 1 may be all he/she had left after the IRS got their hands in it! ;)
Tommy Turtle - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
Old Man Ribber: LOL @ one-worder and at the killer ending! Then maybe those peeps could actually do something constructive? Thanks as always!

Mark Scotti! LOL^2! Thanks, but it'll take a lot more than that to catch up this poor schnook :)

Phil Nelson: That's enough for each member of Congress to sit on, with 20 left over for the White House and Cabinet -- perfect! (LOL^3) Thanks for v/c!

Hmmm: .... Or didn't like the "facts" ("reality") presented in the footnotes... Some people don't like facts, esp. when they go against their illusions. (LOL @ FG's generosity to the Unabomber!)

Might have been the same person who called FG a dirty name at a recent TT parody. They let any moron use the Internet these days...
AFW - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
The only good thing, I can think of, about bein' old..."ya' don't have ta' pay them dang taxes!...course ya' don't have no income, either..." Great job, you guys..or should I say, guy and gal?
Tommy Turtle - January 22, 2010 - Report this comment
AFW: Isn't it wonderful to be broke, and hence not bothered by the IRS? ;-) .... "guy and gal", although "guys" seems to have come into common usage as a collective noun for a group of either, or mixed, gender. Thanks for v/c, you guy! (or is it gal? :-)
TJC - January 23, 2010 - Report this comment
Tithing ya fives for being in the highest bracket song after song... the only bad thing is you've earned so much respect, you no longer get any deductions! Lexcellent (per usu.) from the LOL intro to the ever erudite outro
adagio - January 23, 2010 - Report this comment
TT, I looked at JB's parody as you suggested. My comment to you is on your parody of "Scott Brown".
Tommy Turtle - January 23, 2010 - Report this comment
TJC: Doesn't the Unabomb count as a deduction? Nope, we didn't think so either -- gets ignored. ;) ... 'Twas nice of you to cite the outro crediting FG, but 'twasn't all that eruditely said by moi, really .... oh, you meant the *notes*! ;-) Thanks as always for your 1,040 brilliant comments!

adagio: Already saw your comment there, and replied. Rest assured that were the LP ever to gain high office, you would not have to change any of your practices or beliefs, but you'd pay a whole lot less in taxes. Thanks for all of the follow-ups and thoughtful comments.
blackjack21 - January 23, 2010 - Report this comment
I had to read IRS publication #555 before I could understand this parody. Then I realized there were footnotes, duh! ;-)
adagio - January 23, 2010 - Report this comment
TT, who is LP?
adagio - January 24, 2010 - Report this comment
nm on LP........ remark on Scott Brown
adagio - January 24, 2010 - Report this comment
oops...I meant former remark for TT
Tommy Turtle - January 24, 2010 - Report this comment
blackjack21: But you have to refer to publications 4562, 8829, 550, etc. to understand #555 -- at least, I do, to fill out my return (sigh).... thanks for v/c, and thanks that *at last*, someone found the footnotes *useful* (shock!) :-D

adagio, replied @ Scott Brown, thanks. ("Libertarian Party",, linked in the footnotes to Scott Brown.)
Christie Marie M - January 25, 2010 - Report this comment
This kinda takes me back to last year when I was working with CompleteTax issues at Commerce Clearing House. I kind of miss working there a little. Anyways, whenever I think of IRS and taxing, I think that the IRS are a bunch of crooks, in my opinion. That's because they're always asking for more money. Well, you'll get a refund of $555.
Tommy Turtle - January 26, 2010 - Report this comment
Christie Marie M: Thanks for v/c -- can't wait for my refund check!
mAximo - February 06, 2010 - Report this comment
The 1895 Pollock decision was flawed for back-deriving income to its ultimate, rather than immediate, source. Congress didn't need the 16th Amendment to overturn it, only a law preventing any court from discriminating on the basis of source. Or it could have passed a new tax law and waited for a later court to overturn Pollock, as was to happen in the Brushaber decision, written by Chief Justice White, who also wrote the minority opinion in Pollock - READ IT & WEEP, ALL YE TAX PROTESTORS!
Tommy Turtle - February 07, 2010 - Report this comment
mAximo: Good, then you can pay mine.

More detailed reply another time -- there's a game on today.

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