Should tax policy be “fair”?

Discussion in 'Politics' started by BillyV, Dec 5, 2011.

  1. BillyV
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    BillyV Antidisestablishmentarian

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    I hear a lot these days about asking people and companies to pay their “fair share” in taxes. While I’m not sure what a “fair share” is (it seems that everyone believes they are paying a “fair share” or more of their own income already), I wonder if that should be the deciding factor. Should tax policy be “fair,” or should it focus more on what is best for the country?

    We have a determinable tax base from which to draw these revenues, so let’s assume that expected revenue, without difficult to support GDP changes based upon certain plans, remains the same. How would you divide the taxpaying “pie” between the various income levels? We could conclude that it was the most beneficial to reduce the levels paid by the lower income levels, in order to spur consumption. Lower income households would tend to immediately spend those additional dollars on things they either want or need. Of course, since many of the products that are purchased by this group are made in China, it may not spur our economy to the extent you would think, and it would most certainly reduce the country’s saving rate and dollars available for investment, but there is a case to be made that it would increase economic activity, at least in the short term. If instead you reduce the levels paid by the upper income levels, those additional dollars will likely not be immediately spent, but invested in (hopefully) some productive endeavor. Again, some (probably fairly sizeable) percentage of those funds would also find their way to China as investments in plant or equipment, or in purchases of business assets. However, the savings rate of the country and the total pool of private capital would increase, theoretically spurring business investment. Setting aside what is “fair”, which do you think provides the best chance for long-term growth and prosperity? Is there an optimum level where consumers have enough to spend and the pool of capital is adequate?
     
  2. Full-Auto
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    Full-Auto Gold Member

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    It should be based on equality. No special interests. For those of unfortunate circumstance a debate can ensue as to what portion of everyone's income should be exempt.
     
  3. blastoff
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    blastoff Undocumented Reg. User

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    Absolutely it should be fair. Lower ours and let's get the deadbeats who pay nothing to start kicking something in. End the free lunch!
     
  4. dblack
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    dblack Gold Member

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    It should be fair, yes, but everyone seems to have different definition of what is fair. Mostly that means, the other guy should be paying more.

    In my view, the most important change we need to make with tax policy is to end the practice of using it to implement social policy. Tax policy should be about funding necessary government services - not manipulating society toward various ends.
     
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  5. Steelplate
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    Steelplate Bluesman

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    I actually agree with you auto... The tax burden on a millionaire ought to be exactly the same as on a pauper. Factoring in Cost of living in the "Aristocratic States of America" is essential to finding what that burden is.... after all... if you are taking in an income of $1M/year, 100K(10%) still leaves a hell of a lot of money to live on. But if you are a family of four trying to live on $30K...$3k is damned near life or death.
     
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  6. novasteve
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    novasteve Gold Member Supporting Member

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    "fair" is lib code for "as much as I think you should pay" To them, paying already the vast majority of the taxes, while 47% pay zero income tax, isn't "fair" enough for the libs.
     
  7. novasteve
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    novasteve Gold Member Supporting Member

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    To libs "fair" means "enough" or "more"
     
  8. BillyV
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    BillyV Antidisestablishmentarian

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    Agreed, but that assumes that we want to be "fair." Based upon what is best for the country, is it your opinion that the $3,000 in the hands of the consumer is more valuable than the $3,000 would be in savings and investment? On what basis do you believe that?
     
  9. Steelplate
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    Steelplate Bluesman

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    Well... with that $3k, perhaps that family can afford to spend on a frivolity or two... a washer and dryer, an Xbox... or (gasp) a family vacation. That type of spending IS an investment. That type of spending is what keeps our economy rolling. You can't have a Capitalistic, Consumer driven economy and then hamstring the majority of the people who are supposed to spend.

    If anything, we should be making it easier on the working class in the form of Wages and benefits...then tax rates wouldn't be an issue...they could AFFORD them.
     
  10. Si modo
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    Si modo Diamond Member

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    Fair means what the Founders meant; no one is above the law.

    (That also means no one is below the law.)

    And, it means that all are equal in opportunity. That does not mean the government makes us equal. That is a fool's task.
     

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