One hundred eighty million Americans file income tax returns. Almost as many complain about the system, yet few understand the underlying social and economic outcomes. This book carves open the belly of the income tax for Americans who never have had the opportunity to learn about it and empowers Americans to make informed judgments about what income tax laws would be best.
John Fox explains how the laws represent the most comprehensive expression of official government values. Fox also shows how special relief provisions far exceed in sheer dollars and importance programs funded directly through the federal budget, and why these special provisions typically fail to advance tax justice or economic growth. Fox presents a compelling argument that our nation's interests would be best served by overhauling the system through reforms that eliminate all but the most essential special relief provisions, while reducing tax rates across the board. Such reforms, he argues, are far more compatible with principles of liberals and conservatives than is today's system. Part primer, part manifesto, If Americans Really Understood the Income Tax is sure to open the eyes of taxpaying Americans and earn the respect of policy experts.
If Americans Really
Understood the Income Tax
John O. Fox has engaged in the practice of law in Washington, D.C., since 1964, specializing in tax and business matters. He has been developing the arguments for this book over the past 15 years in conjunction with a course he teaches at Mt. Holyoke College entitled “Taxation and the Values of Democracy.”