T Nation

Fair Tax?

Is the fair tax good or bad? The more I look at it I think the Fair tax is a good idea. Yet to find a real economic analysis that disputes the assumptions made by Fair tax proponents. Your thoughts please.

http://www.fairtax.org/site/PageServer

Well, I certainly think just about anything would be an improvement but realize that taxation is based upon legalized extortion. The concept of asking people to voluntarily fund the government is outside the ken of most people, especially bureaucrats in a mixed economy, who crave power.

Imagine if you could fill out a little box on a form saying you want x% to go to general spending, y% to go to the war funding, and so forth. People would then be in charge of their money, deciding how its divided up. This wouldn’t happen because of POWER. Bureaucrats always think they know best how to spend your money.

Most people actually despise freedom and the consequences of it. They WANT to be sheep; so the powers-that-be willingly shear them. Guess its justice.

I personaly love the idea of a flat tax and think that the U.S. would benefit greatly from it. One rate for everybody, sounds solid to me.

Imagine, replacing our complicated, incentive reducing system of taxation (along with 95% of the IRS, wonder how much that would save the feds) with a simple one page form.

But we all know at the end of the day that government will reject the idea for making far too much sense. Too bad really.

Here’s what happens to politicians who try to return some power to the people:

"With the stroke of a pen, Mr. Kennedy was on his way to putting the Federal Reserve Bank of New York out of business. If enough of these silver certificates were to come into circulation they would have eliminated the demand for Federal Reserve notes.

This is because the silver certificates are backed by silver and the Federal Reserve notes are not backed by anything. Executive Order 11110 could have prevented the national debt from reaching its current level, because it would have given the gevernment the ability to repay its debt without going to the Federal Reserve and being charged interest in order to create the new money. Executive Order 11110 gave the U.S. the ability to create its own money backed by silver.

After Mr. Kennedy was assassinated just five months later, no more silver certificates were issued."

http://www.john-f-kennedy.net/executiveorder11110.htm

While I like the flat tax idea, it’ll never happen. Anyone seriously putting it out there won’t last long.

The fair tax is not a Flat tax in the Flat Tax sense. Flat Tax is a tax on income. Fair Tax is a tax on consumer goods and services. The Fair Tax can NOT work in a system where other taxes are in place, and THAT is why it will never get passed. Nevermind the fact that economic prosperity would ensue as people have more money to spend and foreign bussinesses seek to relocate to the tax shelter that the US has become.

It would put all the lobbyists out of their jobs, and then Congress would have to actually DO something instead of pleasing various special interest groups with tax breaks for campaign contributions.

The current tax system holds back the economy and the American wage-earner. If there was a national referendum to replace all the tax code with the Fair Tax, I’d vote for it in a heartbeat.

-Gendou

Hell it could only improve over the current tax code. I have always like this idea, despite the fact the Boortz is peddling it like it’s his idea.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
Imagine if you could fill out a little box on a form saying you want x% to go to general spending, y% to go to the war funding, and so forth. [/quote]

I’m guessing the majority of people would put y as zero. And THAT’s why such a system will never be allowed.

Isn’t this just another scheme to soak the rich?

[quote]lixy wrote:
Headhunter wrote:
Imagine if you could fill out a little box on a form saying you want x% to go to general spending, y% to go to the war funding, and so forth.

I’m guessing the majority of people would put y as zero. And THAT’s why such a system will never be allowed.[/quote]

Absolutely. Governments want the ability to tax-and-spend w/o any accountability. They’d have to convince people to put their hard earned dollars into any endeavor otherwise.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
They’d have to convince people to put their hard earned dollars into any endeavor otherwise.
[/quote]
Imagine if the American taxpayer had the ability to force DoD to operate on HUD’s budget, for example. That would be absolute democracy.

[quote]gendou57 wrote:
The fair tax is not a Flat tax in the Flat Tax sense. Flat Tax is a tax on income. Fair Tax is a tax on consumer goods and services. The Fair Tax can NOT work in a system where other taxes are in place, and THAT is why it will never get passed. Nevermind the fact that economic prosperity would ensue as people have more money to spend and foreign bussinesses seek to relocate to the tax shelter that the US has become.

It would put all the lobbyists out of their jobs, and then Congress would have to actually DO something instead of pleasing various special interest groups with tax breaks for campaign contributions.

The current tax system holds back the economy and the American wage-earner. If there was a national referendum to replace all the tax code with the Fair Tax, I’d vote for it in a heartbeat.

-Gendou[/quote]

Good post

[quote]
gendou57 wrote:
The Truth

Zap Branigan wrote:
Good post[/quote]

Seconded.
The Fair Tax would put more than just lobbyists out of business. One of the big plusses is that it would cut out the need for the IRS almost entirely. The premise is that taxing income is illegal and should be done away with. Everyone would be allowed the same amount of spending before having to pay taxes on goods bought. You wouldn’t pay taxes on money you save, only on goods you purchase. So to answer an earlier question, no it is not a way to “soak the rich”.

[quote]Cunnivore wrote:
So to answer an earlier question, no it is not a way to “soak the rich”.[/quote]

Sarcasm, my friend. It could work but would investments get taxed as a “purchase” or would they be considered income? Would this also include state income taxes?

Mathematically, it seems like there would be much funding that wouldn’t get done considering I pay roughly 30% plus what ever I pay in sales tax. This could be a good thing for those that would prefer a smaller government but I think we are going to have to kiss many social programs good-bye.

I just don’t think I am ready for a totally private ownership society. No more free public parks.

[quote]

gendou57 wrote:
The Truth

Zap Branigan wrote:
Good post

Cunnivore wrote:
Seconded.
The Fair Tax would put more than just lobbyists out of business. One of the big plusses is that it would cut out the need for the IRS almost entirely. The premise is that taxing income is illegal and should be done away with. Everyone would be allowed the same amount of spending before having to pay taxes on goods bought. You wouldn’t pay taxes on money you save, only on goods you purchase. So to answer an earlier question, no it is not a way to “soak the rich”.[/quote]

There’s a lot to recommend in theory, but I wouldn’t rush to make the government tax specific economic activity - it seems to me that would be a giant disincentive to purchasing goods and services within the U.S.

And the IRS wouldn’t go away – it would transform into a compliance-enforcement division that enforced its collection regime on businesses.

This may have changed in the past several years, but I’ve read that in Turkey at one point the profession with the highest reported income according to the state tax agency was that of notary because it’s the one job that requires receipts for everything. Meanwhile doctors and lawyers had reported average incomes below minimum wage.

With a national sales tax --of the size needed to come anywhere close to replacing the income tax-- people would just pay cash for everything under the counter and the black market would flourish.

From what I’ve read, the tax levied on goods would be about 23% to MATCH current tax income. The reason for this is that as people are no longer having their income withheld from them, they have more money to spend, and do. Boom, economic stimulus.

And the reason that the Fair
Tax wouldn’t lead to a loss in incentive to buy things because of a sudden price hike is because new goods are ONLY taxed when bought. How many times do you think a tax is levied on the goods you buy right now? Guess what, a tax is levied at EVERY SINGLE part of the manufacturing process. Meaning the COST of the item you’re buying? Yeah, its going down.

By estimates, the so-called “Embedded Tax” in most products averages 22% of the cost of the product. So you’re already paying a 22% tax on the product (the cost IS being handed down to you, the consumer) and you’re having your earnings withheld! You’re taxed left and right!

After removing the embedded taxes, the 23% Fair Tax means the price stays roughly the same, and you have your FULL income! Winner, everyone. Except lobbyists. Boo hoo.

-Gendou

[quote]etaco wrote:

With a national sales tax --of the size needed to come anywhere close to replacing the income tax-- people would just pay cash for everything under the counter and the black market would flourish.[/quote]

Doesn’t this already happen with wages on a broad scale?

Unfortunately, the Fair Tax will suffer the same fate as term limits for Congressmen. We all know these things are good for the country but no group with power is going to willingly surrender that power.

Besides, why do you guys think the Income Tax was even created, in 1913? To fund the government? LOL! The goal of the income tax system was to eventually make sure that wealthy people stay that way, by holding down a rising middle class.

Why was Social Security created as it was? To help old people? Yeah, right…it was designed to make a class of people dependent on government.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
Besides, why do you guys think the Income Tax was even created, in 1913? To fund the government? LOL! The goal of the income tax system was to eventually make sure that wealthy people stay that way, by holding down a rising middle class.

[/quote]

LOL! Your government is a joke!

We created an income tax system for a very specific purpose and once that is accomplished we’re abolishing our income taxes.

I’m not sure how many more years before we have our World War I effort paid in full, but it should be getting close. Suckers!

[quote]Ruggerlife wrote:
Headhunter wrote:
Besides, why do you guys think the Income Tax was even created, in 1913? To fund the government? LOL! The goal of the income tax system was to eventually make sure that wealthy people stay that way, by holding down a rising middle class.

LOL! Your government is a joke!

We created an income tax system for a very specific purpose and once that is accomplished we’re abolishing our income taxes.

I’m not sure how many more years before we have our World War I effort paid in full, but it should be getting close. Suckers![/quote]

My point was that most of us ASSUME that the purposes of something a government does is somehow benevolent, which is rarely the case. Most things in gov’t are done to increase someone’s power. Expecting bureaucrats and the IRS to reduce their power over the American people is unrealistic at best.