Almost everybody hates the IRS. Even regular everyday government bureaucrats outside the Treasury department don't like the IRS. People have been proposing ways to get rid of it for a long time now. Two such proposals are the Fair Tax and the Flat Tax. The proponents of each blithely assert that their plan would allow abolition of the IRS. Color me unconvinced. The IRS is here to stay.
Yet the suspicion lingers that the current system of taxation may have subtle imperfections. Many people pay no income tax at all, and some non-payers even get money back in a system of pure wealth transference.
The Flat Tax proposals have been around the longest. There is a certain neatness to the idea of one flat rate, no deductions. Simple. Easily understood. Sounds like this: "thud".
The Fair Tax is a national sales tax. Right away, I'm suspicious of the words "Fair" and "Tax" put together, especially since the name is used to hide what the thing really is.
They call it "fair" because everyone would get a "prebate" based on the cost of living, presumably tied to ZIP code. The potential for waste, fraud, and abuse in that plan is truly mind boggling. And once people start demonstrating that they can't make their prebate check last out the month, we'll see a new loan sharking industry that will make "payday loan" thieves look like kids extorting lunch money.
The Fair Tax would give the politicians even more control over the economy. The ink would not be dry on the shiny new Fair Tax (which will be fair, since it's right there in the name "Fair Tax") before they'll start declaring some things luxuries, some things necessities, and some things harmful. They'll punish or reward with little tweaks to the tax rate whichever products they decide that day are good or bad. It would have the effect of making campaign contributions part of the cost of selling a product. That's fair, isn't it?
Fairly Flat Tax:
So here's my plan. Abolish the Federal Government.
In case that doesn't work for everyone, here's my other plan:
- Give each ZIP Code a multiplier for the minimum cost of living nearby. OK, don't let your eyes glaze over.
- Calculate business income and personal income separately.
- Get rid of all personal deductions except for cost of living and dependent deductions, which will be multiplied by the cost of living in your area.
- No tax for any income up to the cost of living, a flat rate above that.
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