Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Would the GOP really embrace a so-called "Fair Tax"?


Yesterday, Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas (not Kansas) ruffled some feathers in his candidacy announcement speech.  He talked about the dire threats of EMP and cyberterror in the same sentence, practically, as gay marriage and the demonization of Christianity (and not just by Islam). 
  
But he is also credited with promoting the Fair Consumption tax (or Fair Tax”, here, mentioned in a Washington Post editorial Wednesday morning here.
  
A Fair Consumption Tax would tax income after income you have saved is taken out.  Income you take out of savings would be put back in.  Tim Worstall explains the process in an article in Forbes in March 2014, link here  and notes the support of “progressive” business leaders like Bill Gates. It seems that we have some elements of that concept today, with tax-deferred 401(k)’s and IRA’s.
     
It’s a fair question, how this applies to retirees (me), who are in a “spend” mode.  It’s too bad that after about age 60 many find it hard to make a living without turning to hucksterism – and promoting superficial consumption by others.
  
I can remember, though, radical thought, back in the early 1970s, like from the Peoples Party of New Jersey, that the only “fair tax” is a “single tax” and that had to be an income tax.  I would wonder, why not an accumulated wealth tax, if you’re really in the mood for revolutionary expropriation?
   
On the other hand, Larry Browne’s mantra with the Libertarian Party back in the 1990s was, “end the income tax and replace it with nothing.”

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