Where Do Your Tax Dollars Go?


This post is courtesy of Jeff Davidoff and our friends at the ONE Campaign. Jeff serves as ONE’s Chief Marketing Officer, overseeing the organization’s global marketing, branding, online action and creative product development.

March Madness? How about tax madness? Ah, tax season. Whether it’s money you owe, or a refund coming your way, I’m sure you know how much it is. But if you’re like most us of, you likely don’t know where your tax dollars actually go. Think about it. Do you know how your tax dollars are spent? Don’t be discouraged, neither did I.

There’s so much talk in the news about social security, Medicare and foreign assistance spending. It got us wondering how much we contribute to each and now there is a new way to find out.

We’re launching our new Interactive Tax Tool that shows you where your tax dollars go. Enter your household income and you’ll see your tax money break down into eight categories — national defense, social security, health, unemployment, Medicare, interest on US debt, foreign assistance and other. It’s not exact — it assumes you file as a single without exemptions — but you get the picture.

Click here to check out ONE’s Interactive Tax Tool

Most importantly, ONE’s tax tool reveals how only a small fraction of the US budget has already dramatically improved the lives of the poorest people on the planet, and how you personally have contributed to that effort. Together, Americans have helped put 5 million people on AIDS medication, halved malaria deaths in 11 African countries and saved the lives of 15 million children. Pretty amazing stuff.

Time and again, research has shown us that when people see how much good is being done for so little, their opinions on foreign assistance change. As a matter of fact, there’s no single message that effectively changes more skeptics into believers than the living proof of what has been accomplished for so little. The problem is, not enough people have seen this proof. That’s where you come in.

I’m asking you to not only check out the Tax Tool yourself, but to share it with your friends and ask them to share it with their friends too. Because the more people who see the proof that foreign aid is working, the more people will stand up to protect it.


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Danuta Watola
Danuta W4 years ago

Thank you for posting.

Cyan Dickirs
Cyan Dickirs4 years ago

Government spending is inherently wasteful and recessionary. So called programs for the poor outside of the US do more harm than good and fail most times to reach the people. Food rots in government warehouses or is junk to begin with. All the good is done by charitable giving and spending, through churches, individuals banding together, etc. The most change and benefit is through volunteers and basics, like clean water (the purifiers are cheap) the guy who made cheap wheelchairs using available parts in the cultures and donated scrap bicycles. There is a company that makes "campstoves" that are cheap, burn cleanly and use scraps that are saving lives in African countries (Biolite) They have donated thousands of them and will take donations to defray the shipping costs of more.
The increase in taxes and reduction in deductions for charitable giving will only hurt the programs and individuals who are making a difference.
The author is trying to justify and defend the indefensible. She has not a clue as to the real costs in government, the waste and corruption. The government publishes this figures by law, but there is a lot that no one can figure out because there are too many fingers in the pie and too much contradiction and overlap from sources. Less than 1/10th of 1% goes anywhere good. The rest is SS, medicare, defense spending and administration, only that is not defined anywhere. What a crock!

Valerie A.
Valerie A5 years ago


Alison Arnold
Alison A5 years ago

Thanks for posting.

Elizabeth O.
.5 years ago

Thanks for posting.

Danny M.
Danny M5 years ago


Patricia Geraldes

Thanks for the article.

Margaret M.
Marge F5 years ago

Thank-you for sharing an interesting article.

Reggie Thomas
Reggie Thomas5 years ago

Interesting read.It these are good parts where our Tax Dollars Go,what about the bad?I'm sure our Tax Dollars go to bad programs as well.(o_O)

tammy B.
tammy B5 years ago

passing on