Would you like your cocktail shaken or stirred? Would you like your taxes flat or fair?
The IRS scandal has conservatives talking about the flat tax and the fair tax a lot. From what I’ve heard lately, they don’t care too much. They just want to be able to end the IRS or at least minimize the opportunities for it to target people, like it did to conservative groups during the heat of the 2012 election cycle.
But surely it matters. They are two different types of tax. To summarize, a flat tax is based on one rate of taxation, typically taxation on income. As Dr. Carson stated at the Prayer Breakfast earlier this year, there does seem to be something fair about proportionality. Since it is government taking our money, why should it take proportionately more from some and proportionately less from others?
And there’s the fair tax. This is based on purchases of goods or services. This means that every purchase of a final product, for personal use, is taxed at the point of sale. This would also cut out the need for an IRS or at least so extensive an agency.
Both of these tax codes would be much simpler than what we now have, where you can get a deduction if you bought a solar panel, had another kid, or visited a Trader Joe’s. It’s like a bad video game, working your way through the levels to see how many goals you can accomplish.
Less Manipulation or Awards for Behaviors
A flat or fair tax would suddenly stop all rewards for certain types of behaviors our past and present representatives in Washington have wanted to encourage. Of course, when you give someone a tax break for being married, you are playing favorites, making singles (or gay couples) pay more. Whichever side of the gay marriage line you fall on, a fair or flat tax would be unquestionably proportional, without favorites.
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