(NationalSentinel) Fair Tax: Tax day has come and gone, and the annual debate over who pays what has already begun.
This year, tax reformers will be loathe to discover, once again, that nearly half of all Americans don’t contribute anything at all to the federal Treasury. As reported by Moneyish.com:
More than four in 10 American households (44.3%) — or upwards of 76 million — didn’t pay any income tax to the federal government last year, according to data for 2016 from the Tax Policy Center. This year that number is expected to be roughly the same, at 43.9%.
Now, there are some caveats. Many in this group did not earn enough income to be taxable; most did contribute to Social Security and Medicare (66 percent); about 60 percent of the remaining group are elderly and don’t work any longer (and have paid into their government retirement benefits).
But the point is, with roughly only one-in-two Americans contributing income taxes, you can see how “the rich” and others who do earn enough to be taxed have a point when they say, “How much is ‘fair?’ How much is enough?”
What’s the answer? Some say a “fair tax,” in which all earners pay a percentage of their wages. Others say a consumption tax is more fair, taxing purchases that nearly everyone makes.
President Donald J. Trump has said he wants to do tax reform that would decrease the overall percentages earners and corporations pay; where would the lost revenue be made up? Some say in added economic activity, as happened during the Reagan years.
The answer may lie somewhere in the middle, but with a $20 trillion national debt, Congress and the White House had better find a solution quickly.