Tag Archives: taxation

Transforming National Insurance

Source: Adam Smith Institute
by Madsen Pirie

"The now-withdrawn proposal to raise National Insurance rates for self-employed people from 9% to first 10% and then 11% has achieved one positive thing. It has drawn attention to the absurdity of the dual system of income tax and national insurance. Dan Hannan's piece in the International Business Times makes the point that the retention of National Insurance is done to conceal how much tax people are paying. He says people would be very angry if they knew that in addition to their basic rate of income tax at 20%, their National Insurance payments took it to a very much higher level. He is correct, but an honest government should let people know what tax they are paying, even if it changes their readiness to submit to tax increases." (03/15/17)


Trump calls tax return release "fake news"

Source: New York Post

"President Trump called the partial release of his 2005 tax return 'fake news' — and used his own Twitter account Wednesday morning to throw shade on the reporter who broke the story and NBC News for promoting it. 'Does anybody really believe that a reporter, who nobody ever heard of, 'went to his mailbox' and found my tax returns? @NBCNews FAKE NEWS!' Trump said on Twitter. … The form shows Trump made $150 million that year and also paid $38 million taxes." (03/15/17)


Sugar, honey, honey — the weighty problem of obesity and substitution

Source: Cobden Centre
by Colin Lloyd

"In last week's Spring Budget, UK Chancellor, Philip Hammond, introduced a Sugar Tax on fizzy drinks. He confirmed that the tax would be levied in two bands: one of 18p/L for drinks with 5 grams of sugar per 100ml; and a higher band of 24p/L for those containing more than 8g per 100ml. He went on to say that it would be unlikely to raise the initially expected level of revenue because the manufacturers were reducing the level of sugar in these products already in order to avoid the tax. While this may sound like a success story in the fight against obesity it will fail due to substitution." (03/15/17)


Income tax audits plummet as IRS gang loses enforcers to budget cuts

Source: Washington Post

"As millions of Americans file their income tax returns, their chances of getting audited by the IRS have rarely been so low. The number of people audited by the IRS in 2016 year dropped for the sixth straight year, to just over 1 million. The last time so few people were audited was 2004. Since then, the U.S. has added about 30 million people. The IRS blames budget cuts as money for the agency shrunk from $12.2 billion in 2010 to $11.2 billion last year. Over that period, the agency has lost more than 17,000 employees, including nearly 7,000 enforcement agents. A little more than 80,000 people work at the IRS." [editor's note: Good news, but that's still a little more than 80,000 too many – TLK] (03/05/17)


Donald Trump, social engineer

Source: Future of Freedom Foundation
by Jacob G Hornberger

"At his daughter Ivanka's urging, President Trump is showing us his liberal or progressive side by urging Congress to enact tax-code legislation relating to childcare and paid leave. Of course, this shouldn't surprise anyone given that conservatives have, one, long supported other liberal programs, such as Social Security and Medicare, and, two, have long supported the income-tax code as a method of social engineering. Trump is providing a valuable lesson for Americans. Not only does income taxation provide government officials to seize whatever percentage of people's income they want, Trump is reminding us that it also provides a means by which government officials can provide special benefits to people or manipulate them into doing what the government wants them to do." (03/03/17)


Crossing the welfare state with the carbon tax

Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Daniel J Mitchell

"George Schultz and James Baker, two former Secretaries of State, argue for a new carbon tax in a Wall Street Journal column as part of an agenda that also makes changes to regulation and government spending. … In the plus column, there would be a tax cut and a regulatory rollback. In the minus column, there would be a new tax. So two good ideas and one bad idea, right? Sounds like a good deal in theory, even if you can't trust politicians in the real world. However, the plan that's being promoted by Schultz, Baker, Feldstein, Mankiw, etc, doesn't have two good ideas and one bad idea. They have the good regulatory reduction and the bad carbon tax, but instead of using the revenue to finance a good tax cut such as eliminating the capital gains tax or getting rid of the corporate income tax, they want to create universal handouts." (02/28/17)


How specifically the EU & US intend to tax your Bitcoin

Source: Bitcoin.com
by Wendy McElroy

"The bad news: Central bankers want private, centralized blockchains to facilitate all movement of wealth so they can skim the top. Complicit governments intend to regulate competitors, including individual wallet holders, and then collect a 'fee' in the form of taxes. The good news: Bitcoin cannot be regulated without disabling the internet or the bitcoin network, which is arguably the largest and most diverse network in the world." (02/24/17)


Taxing farts

Source: Authority!
by Timothy J Taylor

"I swear that the statist morons of this world would tax our farts if only they could find a way to count them. But they can't yet so the next best thing will be to tax all the machines and technological inventions which make our lives better. First on the statist agenda: robots. That's right. Bill Gates, the richest man in the world said recently that robots that 'steal' human jobs should pay their fair share of taxes." (02/20/17)


Republicans are already trying to raise taxes

Source: Foundation for Economic Education
by Steve Forbes

"Republicans in the House of Representatives are inadvertently setting a nasty political and economic trap for Donald Trump. Yes, it's the Republicans, not the Democrats, who are ready to administer an unnecessary black eye to the new President. That's not their intention, but it manifestly will be the result. The vehicle for this unwitting GOP punch is a new exaction called the border adjustability tax. This levy will cost American consumers at least a trillion dollars over the next ten years. Knowing how Washington politicians calculate these things, you can bet the amount will end up being considerably more." (02/15/17)


Soda taxes: Regressive and unnecessary

Source: National Center for Policy Analysis
by Thomas A Hemphill

"A soda tax internalizes the negative externalities of market activities — in this case the 'public' health costs of obesity and other diseases — by assessing at least a portion of these costs to consumers or soft drink manufacturers. Soda taxes are also flat taxes, thus regressive in nature, negatively impacting lower-income consumers." (02/14/17)