What is your position on a flat tax?

I am curious as to your position on an annual 10% flat tax on wealth for all households and businesses. Understanding that it would never happen in a capitalist environment, would it not generate enough revenue to equitably fund our government?

Official response from submitted

In the US today, only certain forms of wealth are subject to a property tax (chiefly land, homes, buildings etc..."real property"). Other forms (e.g. stocks, bonds) have no tax on their property value but only on the income they generate, if any. So if you mean that adding a 10% tax to those latter forms of property (often called "intangible" property) would generate a vast revenue for the federal government with which to solve all sorts of social problems, that is correct. Would the wealth owning businesses and individuals seek and likely find ways to evade and then overturn such a tax? Likely as that has been the history of so many tax initiatives over the history of capitalism. The problem, in short, is the system. Reforming capitalism has been a long running way to delay confrontation with the needs and possibilities to go beyond capitalism, to do better than capitalism.

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  • Richard Wolff
    responded with submitted 2017-03-18 15:13:44 -0400
  • Kelly Parks
    published this page in Ask Prof. Wolff 2017-03-14 13:37:22 -0400