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JoY
03-21-2009, 08:23 AM
I wanted to hear your opinions on flat tax, a system with a constant tax rate. everyone would pay the same percentage on taxes over their income. if the tax rate is 10%, someone who makes 15 bucks per hour pays 1,50 dollar on taxes & someone who makes 150 bucks per hour pays the same amount in tenfold.

Al Coholic
03-21-2009, 10:23 AM
I think it'll never happen, and even if it did, it's unsustainable. Politicians always want to give out tax breaks, and the public would demand them on some level as well.

That aside I think it's unfair. I think the wealthy ought to pay more, a lot more. I think the poor shouldn't pay any, and the middle class deserve a break. Should there be a flat tax it'd have to be supplemented with a lot of welfare spending, healthcare/unemployment/disability benefits, the works. And a lot of public works projects in order to be fair. I don't think it'd work out though...and I think it'd lengthen the gap between rich and poor to disgusting proportions.

wheelchairman
03-21-2009, 10:41 AM
If there were a flat tax, increased welfare spending and public projects would be unfeasible.

I think a flat tax is an irresponsible idea for as long as the welfare state is worried how it's going to pay those people going into retirement in the coming decades.

bighead384
03-21-2009, 01:58 PM
In America, I think the top 10% have gained 10.5% more of the wealth then they had in 1979. It would probably be a lot worse than that if we didn't have a progressive income tax rate.

Al Coholic
03-21-2009, 03:05 PM
If there were a flat tax, increased welfare spending and public projects would be unfeasible.

I think a flat tax is an irresponsible idea for as long as the welfare state is worried how it's going to pay those people going into retirement in the coming decades.

I was basing that on a flat tax actually being more prosperous for society. Like, say that bullshit argument that breaks for the investment class and an increase of capital into the market somehow leads to such an increase in profits that the government takes in more/as much revenue....

...bullshit I know...

bighead384
03-21-2009, 03:31 PM
There's an extremely low amount of people on this BBS that are conservative (hmmm, wonder why...), which kind of hurts this sort of conversation.

Al Coholic
03-24-2009, 12:00 AM
I think this is a good idea,,,,

......Why?

Al Coholic
03-24-2009, 10:30 AM
Well, you said a flat tax was a good idea. Now you're saying a progressive tax rate is where it's at. I think you misunderstood?

Jesus
03-24-2009, 04:30 PM
Well a bunch of eastern European countries already have a flat tax (more or less). Reading reports from a couple years ago by neo-liberals and libertarians is pretty funny. They claim that one of the biggest reasons for the economic growth of these countries was the flat tax. Right now most of those countries are in the shitter. So obviously a problem of confusing correlation and causation.

The typical argument in favor of a flat tax is that it's easy to administer and that it is thus something developing countries have to adopt because they usually lack a well functioning administration. This obviously ignores the fact that a government that isn't able to collect it's taxes properly, will also be in trouble regulating it's market economy. Neo-libs usually ignore that argument by saying market regulation isn't necessary, there are no externalities, no asymmetric information, no corruption etc. Basic efficient market hypothesis. That sort of reasoning turned out great...

Anyway another problem with a flat tax is that it usually leads to a low tax rate because of political economic reasons. A high flat tax rate would be opposed by both the wealthy and the poor. So you end up with a low one. This leads to an absence of a welfare state because there isn't any funding for it. Neolibs generally don't regard this as a problem, because nothing good comes out of it. They obviously ignore public goods, because a lack of welfare state and a culture that promotes a flat tax generally leads towards a society in which it's every man for himself, lack of trust etc. This undermines general public goods like trust which have both positive economic consequences (in the form of easier contracts etc) as well as an increase in happiness.
Besides public goods they also ignore another function of a welfare state, namely automatic stabilization of the economy. Thus when people loose their jobs they still get benefits which they can spend to keep the economy going, they can still go to hospital etc. life pretty much goes on. Without a welfare state this automatic stabilization is non existent and you end up with a downward spiral.

The only argument left is just the obvious one of "I shouldn't pay more than anyone else". Which you obviously don't have to, you just have to earn less =p.

wheelchairman
03-26-2009, 06:02 AM
Femme bonjour...?

teehee