Sunday, February 05, 2017

Real Tax Reform - Please

I still do my own taxes, by hand, and file a paper return.  I do it primarily because I want to understand the basis for the taxes I owe.  Second, I don't want to pay the cost of a tax payer or tax preparation software.  Third, I'm pretty good at doing taxes. Full disclosure:  I worked as tax preparer for five years after retiring.

I look forward to real tax reform.

Here's my input;

  • I think doing a tax return is another example of the government wasting people's time. The government uses the tax return to accomplish too many things, including subsidizing housing, health care, education, and providing welfare.  In my opinion, the government should limit tax returns to be only about collecting taxes and use some other complicated system to administer government programs.
  • Next, I think the government ought to implement a alternative simplified tax system with perhaps three brackets and no deductions.    And let the taxpayer choose which system to use.   For reference, Hong Kong did this a while back and close to 99% of taxpayers converted to the simplified system, because there wasn't a great enough tax benefit to do the extra work.
  • Finally, the government ought to do the simplified tax return for people and let them decide if they want file their own return or just use the government issued return.

While I doubt any of my ideas will be used, now is the time to make real changes that will improve government.    Let's start good tax reform.

For more on New Beginnings, check back Sundays for a new segment.

This is not financial or tax advice advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

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