Basic flat tax description, by an excellent writer.William
I agree. We need to simplify the tax rules. When I first read this book and heard Forbes speak about it I was all for it. Now that I have had some time to read some of the reviews of it and of the Fair Tax I am beginning to question both the Flat Tax and Fair Tax plans. I have always questioned the idea of taxing only consumption. We already know that sales taxes affect the way we buy. I believe the actions to avoid taxes would only increase if the Fair Tax was applied, especially as we are becoming more and more a global economy. So, I still believe that we require a tax on income and not mainly consumption. Again, leaning back to the Flat Tax. What really is Forbes discussing as a Flat Tax? In my mind his idea of a Flat Tax is really a scrapping of the current system with all of its exemptions and rules and rewriting it. Well, that is a great idea. The problem as many have pointed out is that the complexity of the tax codes comes from determining what is actually income. What I think Forbes is trying to say is that he wants to make a more general rule about what we call income. Sounds good to me. My concerns are that this plan will not actually give everyone a tax break. I understand his point that with a lower tax bracket there will be fewer people that feel the need to avert the system, but I am not convinced that that will outweigh the drop in the percentage paid by those who currently abide by the system. I also worry that this will not eliminate the need for the IRS. Someone has to police and monitor all of that money. No matter how few the number of rules there still has to be someone checking that they are followed. Yet, I am still on board, I just think that Forbes is making the Flat Tax sound better then it ever can be. I have another suggestion that I believe would simplify our paying and collecting of taxes. What if the IRS created a website/software that allowed us to calculate our taxes? This may be coming from my computer science side, but think about it. It would give us one single location to determine our correct tax amount that followed the tax code. It would already have all of the data already collected by the IRS that was sent in by our employers and financial institutions. So, really a lot of the calculations would already be completed. We would just have to enter in any other income, deductions, or credits into the system. Sure we would have to worry about the possibility for tampering with the system and determine how those without access would file, but I think it could definitely save me time I spend on my taxes. Yes, it would get a fight from any number of tax preparation companies, but they are going to get hurt by any good change in the tax code anyway.Dan Starr
Steve Forbes presents. Compelling case for a flat tax nd case studies around he world were it is working. Our tax code is he result of politicians creating loopholes for big corporations in order to get "donations" for re-election. The flat tax wold take that graft away from the politicians. Good for America, if we could just find some representatives that have the integrity to do what is right for the Country!Vicki
In light of the IRS being the enforcement arm of the Government for Obamacare, the flat tax is looking better and better.Stefani
Oh, please, please, please, can we have a flat tax?! It's time to stop using the tax code as a means of punishment and reward, turning it into some convoluted, serpentine monster. Let's keep it simple, and see the prosperity blossom.Jarrett Ray
Having just finished paying taxes and being annoyed by the complexity I picked up this book to see if tax simplification was both possible and economically viable. As Forbes points out, numerous other countries have embraced the Flat Tax and as a result their GDP has increased. Forbes presents a well organized argument in favor of tax simplification through a Flat Tax that would be a boon for reducing health care costs, encouraging investment, reducing compliance costs of filing your tax returns, and cutting taxes while also taking lower income people off the tax rolls. The Flat Tax beats the Fair Tax (consumption based) in spades. The Fair Tax means a new, high cost bureaucracy to implement it and enforce it, the market for new homes would be destroyed, and taxes on the internet would stifle what is now a tax free zone. At under around 150 pages long it is a short read and well worth it.Risa
This book made me want to join Steve Forbes' band of revolutionaries. It's a quick and easy read, and quite accessible.