Visualize This: Days Spent Working to Pay Taxes

Posted to Visualize This  |  Nathan Yau

It's time for another segment of Visualize This. For new readers, this is something I've been running every now and then where I post a dataset and we all put up our own visualizations. It runs for a couple of weeks and we end up with many different views of the data, some inspiration, and we learn something in the process.

The Data

About 28.2% of the average American's income goes towards taxes, which means the first 103 days of the year is to pay for government. At the end of these 103 days - April 13 - is Tax Freedom Day. However, because of varying state-by-state tax burdens and average incomes, Tax Freedom Day varies by state. Alaska, for example, has the earliest Tax Freedom Day (March 23) because it has low state and local taxes while Connecticut is last on April 30, because of "extraordinarily high federal income taxes." For this Visualize This we're looking at the number of days each state spends paying taxes this year (2009).

Your Mission

As with previous Visualize This segments, show us your best shot at visualizing the Tax Freedom Day data in this forum thread. I've put the data in an Excel spreadsheet that you can find at the bottom of the forum post. You are welcome to incorporate any other data too if you feel that it adds to the story.

Map? Graphs? Both? Let's see what you've got. Oh, and most importantly, have fun. If you haven't registered a (free) forum account, you'll want to do that first.

DEADLINE: April 30, 2009

[Thanks, Alex]


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