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I happily pay my taxes, as my part of the expense of government.

That's wonderful that so many of you are "happy to pay taxes" and "proud to pay taxes." The thing is, I could be just as happy for half the money.

By being prudent now, I can fill the 22% federal bracket with Roth IRA conversions. Later, when I'm drawing social security, by living off the Roth money and "just enough" regular IRA money, my social security will be subjected to 50% of it being taxed and maybe even (some of it) 0%. If I just shrug my shoulders and proudly pony up whatever Turbo Tax says I owe without doing any of this planning, my IRA withdrawals *may* be at 22% in the future, but it's looking like the tax brackets will revert to higher levels about the time I hit FRA. If I do no Roth conversions now, I'll pay that (potentially higher) rate PLUS 85% of my SS will be taxed at that same marginal rate.

So, I fully recognize that Uncle Sam will get his chance to take his cut, and I don't begrudge the IRA money being taxed because it got me a tax deduction plus grew tax deferred for decades. But, playing by the rules that are in place, I can improve my position legally. Well, the rules may change, so I'm hedging rather than leveraging that all the decisions made right now will turn out to be optimum.
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