What’s In Your Wallet?

By Linda Nidiffer

All writers in Op Ed are here to inform and acknowledge issues of importance to our communities, however these writings represent the views and opinions of the authors and not necessarily of The Advertiser.

Seriously, what is in your wallet?  I have my driver’s license, some credit cards, my insurance cards, some old receipts and of course, some money.  I don’t carry “big money” in my wallet.  My mother taught me not to do that and she taught me not to flash big money around in public because that was just asking to get mugged. “Go into a dressing room or a bathroom, and get into your big money stash and then you can pay for whatever you are buying. Never, ever reveal where you keep your big money.” I never have.  Mom kept hers in her bra so, of course, she had to go someplace private to dig out her stash!  Even so, it was good advice.

What constitutes little money from big money?  Little money is just enough to pay for incidentals like a loaf of bread or a gallon of milk.  While you are out running errands you might get hungry and want to stop for lunch and pay cash in the drive thru.  That is little money.  Big money means different things to different people.  It could be enough to pay cash for an extravagance.  The biggest example of Big Money that I can think of came when I was teaching and a colleague was wondering out loud if she should go back and lock her room.  Since none of us locked our rooms ever, I asked her why she was considering such a rash action while we were eating lunch. “Oh, well, we sold the hogs and I have $250,000 in my purse to pay off the combine after school,” she said calmly.  I nearly had a stroke!  Now that is BIG money! I worried about her getting that cash to the combine dealer the rest of the day.

Uncle Joe wants to know if you have $600 in your bank account or if you make transactions of $600 or more.  When my kids were growing up I could spend $600 at the grocery store without much effort.  Our mortgage is more than $600 and he and the IRS want to be notified about that expenditure of ours every month?  Can you imagine the cost to the government that this will require?  It boggles my imagination to think of all the extra people that will have to be on the federal payroll to keep track of my mortgage and possibly yours.  I bet the banks, credit unions, and other lending institutions are just thrilled thinking about how they can comply with this.  They are already required by law to report any transactions over $10,000 so maybe they just have to just change the parameters of their computer software.

Aunt Nancy and Uncle Joe say that this is to catch the big boys cheating on their taxes.  If that is the case audit the big boys legally and quit attempting to spy on the little boys and girls.  Quit trying to grow the government.  Quit trying to get your nose in my wallet.