In a recent TED Talk (listen here TED’s ‘Explicitly Partisan’ Talk, Briefly Barred From Its Site, Now Everywhere) Nick Hanauer presented an “idea he thought was worth spreading — that rich people like him should be paying more in taxes.”
If you agree with Nick, then great. But if you are rich and you don’t agree with Nick, well you have lots of other options in a global society. You can move your business and jobs and wealth more freely now than ever before in the history of the world. If you consider the decisions that are made today by the people and companies who can best afford to enact tax avoidance strategies, you will find that it’s not as simple as just taxing rich people more. Nick may have identified a problem but is woefully short on “solution”.
Personally I would like to hear Nick give his next Ted talk on explaining why the FairTax is the answer. The FairTax is a progressive tax, where the poor pay no tax and it actually taxes wealth not just income. The FairTax expands the tax base to non-US citizens who visit (legally or illegally). The FairTax closes loopholes, diminishing lobbyist influence. It improves our competitiveness in the world by removing embedded taxes in the costs of products “made inAmerica” that we export. It would bring trillions of dollars in capital currently held off shore due to our current tax system. The FairTax would provide consumers with their entire paycheck (not a paycheck after deductions) fueling the spending life cycle Nick says is the key driver to job creation.
We already have the highest corporate tax in the world. And it’s hurting, not helping. This imple mindedness of “tax the rich” may make for great headlines but that’s it. You can certainly continue to add pages to the tax code, which happens today at more than a change per day so not even the experts on tax law can keep up – providing the political class their power and K street their wealth. But what have you solved?
Bottom line: if we were to scrap the tax code and start from scratch to develop a smart and elegant solution to tax ourselves today – it wouldn’t include a tax on income and would look a lot like the current FairTax Act H.R. 25 (the most researched piece of legislation on capital hill today). Nick, study up.
Here is a fix for Congress (do you think your representative will vote for this?)
*Congressional Reform Act of 201_*
1. No Tenure / No Pension.
A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.
2. Congress (past, present & future) participates in Social Security.
All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people. It may not be used for any other purpose.
3. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.
4. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.
5. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.
6. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.
7. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void.
The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves. Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators, so ours should serve their limited term, then go home and back to work. http://goooh.com
8. Term limits for congress.
There are a number of iterations on term limits being proposed but eight years should be the max. http://www.termlimits.org/
9. Politicians can’t become lobbyist once they leave office. http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=7387331n&tag=contentMain;contentBody
In the article “The Price of Taxing the Rich” there is not one mention of the FairTax as the solution since under the FairTax plan we don’t tax income. Why?
The solution is so obvious yet the political class stands in the way of progress. We are going to have to vote out all politicians from both parties who have served more than two terms and replace them with citizen representatives who will pass term limits and the FairTax. Otherwise we as a nation are doomed.
In a recent article, Social Security needs to be fixed – So just do it, a few points stood out.
#1. A Social Security fix “boils down to some combination of benefit reductions and revenue increases.” When politicians talk of revenue increase they are talking about increasing social security taxes. How can we bring awareness to the fact that a better solution is not higher taxes but taxing more people (from illegal aliens to foreign visitors)? Let’s say that’s another 50 million people paying into the system, that sounds like a good, viable, alternative solution for fixing Social Security. That is the FairTax approach.
#2. “The administration will oppose any measures that privatize or weaken Social Security.” Does it oppose raiding the social security lockbox and spending money specifically collected from Social Security taxes on other things? Doing so weakens Social Security. If we had all the money ever collected from Social Security taxes (and not yet paid out in benefits) in a savings account right now, we wouldn’t be talking about this issue.
#3. “Imagine what could get done if those who profess to care so much about Social Security worked together on a plan to save it.” Imagine all the people, marching on DC demanding the FairTax plan be passed. That’s a revolution worth fighting for. The future of our free society is at stake.
Give the FairTax Act a Fair Hearing – Advertiser-Tribune
Imagine a United States without the Internal Revenue Service. Imagine not paying federal income tax. Imagine not paying a payroll tax for Social Security and Medicare.
In fact, imagine there being no corporate income taxes, gift taxes, estate taxes, capital gains taxes, alternative minimum tax or self-employment taxes. Oh, and money earned on savings and investments would be tax-free, too.
Does that sound great? Now, imagine instead paying a 23-percent national sales tax on all purchases.
Does that sound like an even trade? That, in essence, is the FairTax plan, which aims to simplify America’s tax structure while being “revenue neutral” – raising the same amount of revenue as all those aforementioned taxes…
Fair Tax will create jobs, reduce corruption in the U.S. – The Daily Progress
I wish to add two points to the great letter in the Jan. 6 Daily Progress (“ ‘Fair tax’ should be implemented”). If we wish to make the American worker more competitive in the world economy, we need to make the cost of doing business in the U.S. cheaper and easier than in other countries.
The elimination of income tax will attract businesses from around the world. They will build and manufacture here where the world’s largest market exists. Our problem then will be finding enough workers to fill all the jobs created.
My other point concerns the game played by Congress by handing out favors such as income tax advantages. It creates corruption at all levels and needs to be removed. We need a prominent national spokesperson to start a serious discussion about replacing the income tax with the Fair Tax…
Tom Braithwaite – Fluvanna County
Fairer tax needed by Fran Fulton
The time has come to rid ourselves of this onerous income tax system. The FairTax is a compelling proposal that replaces all federal taxes with a transparent sales tax on retail purchases of new goods and services, after making allowances for the purchase of basic necessities. No exemptions or loopholes. The FairTax would take an enormous amount of power away from the politicians and elites who benefit greatly from the current system. Needless, to say there is much opposition to it that is not based on an honest assessment of the actual bill.
Take three steps back to go forward – The Commercial Appeal
The next step is to raise tax revenue. The best way to do this is to enact the “Fair Tax” and eliminate the federal income tax. This approach taxes the underground economy, whether it is from illegal aliens, drug dealers or people who barter their services. Everyone pays his or her fair share. Also, the Fair Tax would eliminate Internal Revenue Service employees for additional savings. Finally, a domestic (only) consumption tax will lower the cost of our goods on the international market. A temporary consumption surtax could also be enacted to pay off the debt. As the debt is paid off, the annual interest payment is lowered.
Tom Wheeler, Memphis, TN
Are you ready? Your taxes are due in two months. Good luck because as FairTax spokesman Denis Calabrese, said on FOX Business yesterday, “The current tax code is easy to cheat if you’re dishonest and it’s impossible to comply with if you’re honest. The IRS cannot literally tell you how to comply with its own code.”
Also consider: Our parents and grandparents have watched our nation grow, get buffeted, then come back to move forward once again. But would the past generation expect us to be dealing with the same, although ever expanding, embarrassment of a tax code today, in 2011, that started the 20th century? Would they have predicted that over 20 years after the Communist system in the USSR fell, Americans would still be submerged in a system that taxes our production? Or, that the IRS admits most citizens have to pay for tax assistance just to send their money to Washington?
Fair Tax will cure our ‘ruinous’ tax code – Alamogordo Daily News
There has been a great amount of discussion about the jobless rate, outsourcing of manufacturing jobs, lack of financing and shortages in state budgets from coast to coast. After all the back and forth, no one even mentions both the culprit and the answer to all of it… Industry is burdened with every conceivable tax our bureaucrats can dream up and they work at it constantly.
Taxing productivity and savings is counter-productive… Multiple billions are spent each year by the IRS and our tax system, stocking our treasury, when we should be using a system that is simple and painless. The Fair Tax will replace every dollar being collected by our ruinous tax code. It will remove the nightmare of the April 15 deadline, bring billions of dollars from offshore to our banks, billions that are presently hidden from the prying eyes of the IRS. It would relieve a too-heavy burden of taxes on all domestic industry and improve their competition with foreign manufacturing.
Don Omey, Alamogordo, NM