Tag Archives: VAT

Real Income Tax Reform Is Not About Inventing a Better Mouse Trap

The Border Adjustment Tax (BAT) proposed by Congress is intended to change how business income is taxed giving it features of a Value-Added-Tax (VAT), a cash-flow tax, and a consumption tax. The idea is to make the corporate income tax function as a quasi-VAT and less as an income tax on the earnings of U.S. producers. Clearly, violative of free trade principles affecting the U.S., the practice should be made the subject for U.S. trade re-negotiation, a challenge fully backed by the new Administration. This is a fair trade problem, not a problem about income taxation. The BAT “solution” makes for new problems. On several fronts, a BAT for the U.S. is likely to make matters worse. The driving force behind the BAT is the expectation that it will generate considerable tax revenue… Continue reading

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An Enemy of Income Tax Reform: The “Business Transfer Tax” (a/k/a “Business Activity Tax” and “Business Flat Tax”)

The “Business-Transfer Tax” in all its forms is a proposal for a dual-tax system, to have a value-added tax built upon a rejiggered income tax. This second tax comes disguised as income-tax reform with the VAT label avoided. Sad to say this ill-conceived proposal amounts to a cover-up and remedy for the failure of U.S. trade negotiators to insist that VAT nations abide by the principles of free trade. But, two wrongs don’t make a right. As an enemy of real income-tax reform, it would make the income tax even more disjointed and difficult to unscramble into a simple, tax-neutral, low-rate income tax. Continue reading

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Finding the Road to Real Income Tax Reform

As a tax reform proposal, the FreedomTax is revolutionary. It’s more than just a proposal to clean up a tax mess. It would overturn and junk the two pillars of the establishment’s system of taxation, replacing that system in its entirety with a true income tax. This new tax would be a 10% flat tax on all income, taxing all income the same so that all income would bear its fair share of the income tax burden. The FreedomTax would dethrone the IRS, transforming it into a mere ministerial agency charged with the benign task of administering a greatly simplified income tax and tax-neutral much like the motor-vehicle fuel tax. Continue reading

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The Fair Tax — “Be Careful What You Wish For”

A new agency would be created to administer and oversee the Fair Tax, the Sales Tax Bureau (“STB”). It would be vested with audit and collection powers similar to those of the IRS, as would the state sales-tax authorities working with the STB to run the system. The Fair Tax bills introduced in Congress contain provisions to establish a toll-free telephone violation-reporting system and create a rewards program for private parties who assist the STB authorities in discovering or prosecuting Fair Tax evaders. Continue reading

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