NO TO THE 1040 and YES TO THE FLAT TAX

This past week millions of Americans paid their taxes, so that porkers like Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer can have his subsidies.  Not that Schumer is alone, or that only Democrats are guilty.

While Senator Schumer was busy of thinking of new ways to tax us, and even more outrageous forms of spending, Americans were spending an average of ten hours to fill out the long 1040 Form with all the silly schedules.  Those lucky enough to be able to use Form 1040-EZ were only spending 6 hours on average to do their taxes.

It is intriguing that even as they are busy shifting resources from the private to the public sector, on the theory that Americans are too stupid to spend their own money wisely, Senators and Representatives are busy assuring us that they are just like us.  They can’t fill out their own tax forms either!  Former Senator Orrin G. Hatch of Utah made a major point of that, doubting that any members of Congress can manage the tax form their meddling has created.

Given the complexity of the tax forms, it is hard to believe that the Internal Revenue Service doesn’t intentionally make the tax form progressively more complicated year after year.  After all, the more complex it is, the more chance there is that the hapless taxpayer ill make an error.  Logically, an error will be either in the government’s favor, of in favor of the taxpayer.  If it is in the government’s favor (as apparently millions of those errors are), government gets more money.  If the error is in favor of the taxpayer, that taxpayer will be caught and forced to pay the difference, with penalties and interest, meaning the government gets more money.

The millions of Americans who just filed their tax forms are still weeks away from Tax Freedom Day, the day they can finally start working for themselves, and not for the IRS.  And the IRS has the nerve to take out commercials saying that if you make less than $32,000 a year you may not have to pay taxes.  Maybe not, but in order to find that out, you have an 800-page instruction book to go through.

There is a way out of all this, of course.  It is called the Flat Tax, and the Association of Concerned Taxpayers seizes this occasion to renew its call on Congress to sunset the existing tax code as of 2020, and use the intervening time to construct a simple, fair, flat tax on consumed income.  We’ll even supply the postcards that can be used to file a tax return using such a system.

How much did you make?

How much did you invest and save?

What is 15% (or better yet, 10%) of the difference.

That’s your tax owed.

Enjoy the nine hours and fifty minutes you just saved over the old system.