Last week, the Associated Press reported that 47 percent of U.S. households will pay no federal income tax for 2009. This week, Gallup released a poll showing 45 percent of Americans say the amount of federal income taxes they pay is “about right.” When I see those two numbers, I’m reminded of the old Saturday Night Live skit, with Dana Carvey’s “Church Lady” saying, “How conveeeenient.”

Vice President Biden famously said paying taxes is patriotic – and to an extent he is right. Gallup refers to the poll results as the most positive view of income taxes in 60 years and also credits a sense of patriotism in the country. While I’m not part of either group referenced above, I speculate that if I were in the first group, I would also be in the second group.

Most Americans believe in paying their fair share and have a sense of patriotism, but how do you define fair and patriotic?

For a review of the articles, please see the following links:

AP: Nearly half of US households escape fed income tax

Gallup: Views of Income Taxes Among Most Positive Since 1956