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Brought to you courtesy of Robert Parker for NC House.
U. S. NEEDS NATIONAL RETAIL SALES TAX by: Clark Walter 7/12/97 Hopefully, the American people will soon recognize that Constitutional Amendment XVI was an even bigger mistake than the Prohibition Amendment. The record of the past fifty years provides ample evidence that the Federal income tax has damaged our economic system more than we can possibly imagine. Here are the reasons why the income tax should be replaced with a national retail sales tax: I. The cost of collecting the Federal income tax is estimated to exceed $100 billion per year or about 13.4 percent of what is collected. II. Nobody knows how many tax dollars are uncollected simply because the income is not reported. Rough estimates are that it represents a loss of $3.25 billion tax dollars annually. III. The income tax empowers the Federal government to invade our privacy to an unjustifiable degree. IV. The income tax has empowered the government to make economic decisions which are better made by the individual citizens. V. The income tax has been misused to transfer money and power from one group of citizens to another. Society as a whole is obligated to help the needy, not one class of citizens more than another. VI. The income tax has created an environment which encourages wrongdoing. VII. The income tax has divided our society into classes. Those people who have proven their superior ability to make correct economic decisions are limited in their opportunity to do so because such large portions of their income are transferred to the government. Over taxing the wealthy only reduces the amount of capital which can be invest to create new products, jobs and services. VIII. The income tax has corrupted our political processes. It encourages political contributions, sometimes to both parties by the same donor, in order to gain favorable tax legislation and regulatory favors. The answer to reforming campaign finances and rooting out other corruption lies in removing from government its ability to favor one group or class over another. IX. The income tax levied on companies is a myth. All companies must pass on their income taxes to be paid for by the purchasers of their goods and services. X. The income tax imposes an extra burden on retirees. While an annual inflation rate of 2 percent may not seem like much, in 10 years it adds up to more than a 20% loss of purchasing power. A national sales tax will overcome most of the problems mentioned above. Most states already collect sales taxes and retailers are geared up to collect them. The states will simply transmit to Washington the sales taxes they collect, minus a small percentage to compensate them for the slight clerical work required. Since the government will no longer need information about us as individuals, all the IRS records could and should be destroyed, except for those cases which are being litigated. Cheating on sales taxes is much less likely than on income taxes and compliance costs will be greatly reduced. The only objection to a sales tax seems to be that it is regressive. A 15 percent sales tax levied on all retail goods and services, except food and drugs plus higher rates on the purchase of luxury goods would be one way to offset regressivity. Computer technology offers other ways to fine tune the tax exemptions. The more we buy the more taxes we pay. What could be more fair than that? Imagine the thrill every jobholder will experience. Every dollar that is now being withheld will be theirs to save or spend as they wish. ---------- Submitted by Clark Walter, Treasurer of The Libertarian Party of Buncombe County Published in the Asheville Citizen-Times on 7/12/97 Copyright Clark Walter. Re-published by permission of the author.
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