• 68°

April brings dreaded tax time

The month of April brings the most dreaded day of the year.

Each spring we file our income tax returns.  Working Americans despise filing their taxes simply because our tax code is grossly unfair. 

We face a system that allows roughly half of the population to avoid paying anything. At the same time a maze of tax deductions and credits allows others to pay less than their fair share. The result of this tax structure is disproportionate and unfair taxing of the middle class to the point that the middle class has become an endangered species.

The solution to this problem, as well as several other economic issues currently facing us, is the adoption of a fair tax system. The fairest tax structure is one that impacts everyone equally while not levying taxes on anyone disproportionately.  Such a system was arguably first laid out by God in the Bible when He called for everyone to tithe at the same rate regardless of their position in society.

The reason the Bible calls for everyone to be taxed at the same rate is that everyone should benefit equally from their government. Citizens benefit equally from legitimate government services such as fire and police protection. The corporate CEO receives the same benefit from the local fire department as the woman who sells the excess from her garden at the farmers market. Common sense holds that as everyone benefits equally from legitimate government services that everyone should pay their fair share of the costs of these services.

America should adopt a flat income tax of 15 percent on all income. Our immense national debt probably makes 10 percent impractical at present. This change could realistically be phased in over 10 years.

The bottom tax rate should rise by 1.5 percent each year until it reaches 15 percent and the higher brackets should be lowered in equal increments over the same time. During the same period all deductions and credits should be eliminated. 

The implementation of a flat income tax on wages, interest, capital gains or other income of any kind would result in everyone contributing their fair share. If such a system were to replace the current tax structure the resulting investment by individuals seeking to reap the rewards of their labor would spur explosive economic growth.

The minimum wage debate would end because the principle of supply and demand would cause wages to rise dramatically in an economy fueled by the ability of the industrious to truly benefit from their labor.

Finally the problem of the national debt would be indirectly solved simply because everyone would have an interest in government spending resulting in the curtailing of government waste.

Preston Ray Garrett is an Oxford attorney and can be reached at ray@garrettfridayandgarner.com.