Saturday, May 17, 2008

Lying about a 'fair tax'

Advocates for the so called 'Fair Tax' say it will result in everyone receiving 100 percent of their paycheck.

FairTaxTheTruth It wasn't true when former libertarian Neil Boortz published his first best-seller on 'The Fair Tax Book'; it wasn't true when he published his much revised mega best-seller paperback edition on the 'Fair Tax,' and it still isn't true now that he's published his follow up, called Fair Tax: The Truth: Answering the Critics.

As one of those critics points out, the critics aren't answered, and truth is utterly at odds with the claims of the  'Fair Tax' enthusiasts -- as can be seen in Boortz's new book itself:

    The book ... is intended to be a sequel to The FairTax Book, published in 2005, that offers "eye-opening new insights not covered in the original book."
   
Boortz is right. There are some eye-opening new insights unique to this sequel. Like the disclosure that you might "owe more in taxes in the first year of a FairTax system than you do today." Or the admission that "the FairTax could be even more progressive than our current system." Or the confession that the "implementation of the FairTax doesn't mean complete annihilation of the IRS."  Or the proposal that "a procedure should be set up in the Treasury Department to collect taxes on Internet and catalog sales, remitting the state and local governments' share to them."

Fair Tax: The truth is there is no such thing as a fair tax.  Never was.  Never can be.

UPDATE: Now online is an article from that same Fair Tax critic, from the May 12 issue of The New American: "Is Making Taxes 'Fair' the Answer?" Says author Laurence Vance, "This comprehensive article on the problems with the FairTax is not based on a Boortz book, although I think I mentioned him once or twice."  It concludes:

Since it is a tax-reform proposal instead of a tax-reduction proposal, the FairTax merely changes the way that taxes are collected. It is an incremental step toward neither lower tax rates nor lower taxes. And it is certainly not a plan to return the size, scope, and cost of the federal government to its proper constitutional authority. With President Bush’s proposed new budget topping $3 trillion and the national debt fast approaching $10 trillion, the need of the hour is clearly to rein in government spending, not change the way the government raises its revenue. FairTax proponents have the proverbial cart before the horse. Their energy is misdirected. As Congressman Ron Paul has remarked on several occasions: “The real issue is total spending by government, not tax reform.”

The income tax should be repealed, not replaced. The IRS should be abolished, not given a new name. Tax reform should result in revenue reduction, not revenue neutrality. Because the FairTax falls far short of these goals, it should not be considered a “fair” tax. It should therefore be rejected by all Americans who favor a return to the limited government of the Founders.

Who in all honesty could disagree?

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29 Comments:

Blogger Comrade MOT said...

I dont know if you have adressed this issue before, but how would a libertarianz government fund Police, Defence, Courts, prisons etc?

A libertarian society would still need a small government, to ensure legislation relating to 'common law' protecting freedoms and the services mentioned above was optimal.

5/17/2008 10:50:00 am  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

Why do you assume we require Prisons and a Defence force?

The Defence Force will not be getting involved in a War (as evidenced by not being sent to Fiji 18 months ago) it is therefore unnecessary and should be abolished.

Prisons are a complete waste of time and money serving no purpose whatsoever except to teach incompetent criminals how to be better criminals, and as recruitment grounds for gangs.

5/17/2008 01:21:00 pm  
Anonymous hanso said...

What if there is a war Elijah? You know Japan got quite close to us in WW2.

As for the comment on prisons, do you suggest capial punishment for every single crime?

As someone who has agreed with every single comment of yours so far, I am shocked by your post.

Please don't tell me you're an anarchist...

5/17/2008 02:20:00 pm  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

Hanso...I think suggesting there is going to be a War is getting slightly paranoid.

Were we ever going to get involved in a War it would have been in Fiji last year to liberate the population from criminals.

Despite all the noise our Government made they did not send troops, which proved the point we would never do so (cannot get much closer to home than Fiji) and therefore the $1.5 billion per year spent on defence is a waste of money.

With regards to prisons, yes, I think they are a complete waste of time and money; and contribute to the level of crime in NZ.

I am all for 'punishment' but not through the avenue of prisons.

One of the best punishments, curiously, is actually Home Detention with strict conditions.

To give an example, were [you] confined to your house 23 1/2 hours per day, 7 days per week for the next 5 years on Home Detention you would go up the wall very quickly, and it would be a 'genuine' punishment...and I suggest that were such sentences handed out they would quickly become 'feared' by criminals, because of the resulting utter boredom, in contrast to a rather 'social' atmosphere of a prison.

(Try spending the next week without leaving your house and you will see what I mean)

5/17/2008 02:33:00 pm  
Blogger Comrade MOT said...

"Prisoners" on home detention can just have their homies round for piss-ups if they get bored. What if they don't have a home?

Enforcing home D still costs.(even if not as much as prison)

Libertarianz party supports a defence force if you read their web site.

5/17/2008 03:46:00 pm  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

What on Earth is a "homies"?

5/17/2008 04:35:00 pm  
Anonymous hanso said...

"Were we ever going to get involved in a War it would have been in Fiji last year to liberate the population from criminals."

I see your logic Elijah. However if New Zealand were ever to become a country so libertarian that it would not collect tax, I imagine it might also have a foreign policy more aggressive to dictatorships.

On the subject of prisons, as well as echoing Comrade's objections, the punished would have access to alot more resources than he would at a prison.

Your comments about prisons being social seems quite naïve. Although there are some prisoners that relish the prison enviroment, many people dread the idea of sharing a room with a knowen serial killer.

Comorade Mot

I imagine a libertarian government could survive on gifts and investments . I do not object to the government owning buisnesses, provided they do not establish monopolies (which they usualy do).

5/17/2008 04:38:00 pm  
Blogger Comrade MOT said...

From wiktionary (its black american slang that has spread - I think)

homie (plural homies)

1. (slang) A friend; somebody one often hangs out with.

That's Chad, he's my homie.

5/17/2008 06:00:00 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Aha, I see that PC hasn't made a comment to Elijah's stupid comment about not having a defense force and also not having prisons. Is Elijah a professional stage comedian or simply daft?

5/17/2008 07:14:00 pm  
Blogger Blair said...

I imagine in a libertarian society:

1) The only government we would need would be a parliament and a judiciary. Parliament would meet once a year to appoint judges, set their salaries, and revise criminal and civil law.

2) The judiciary would be self-funding, as criminals would be punished only by being taxed. Violent criminals would be given preventative home detention.

It may be that a criminal's "home", as determined by the Court, would be a prison, but this would only become necessary in the rare case of them not being shot by the law abiding while in the process of committing their crime.

3) We don't need government-funded armed forces. Costa Rica gets by fine without them. Private miltias, with some safeguarding regulation, would be legal in a libertarian society. In an emergency, the government could commandeer them, and other external forces by the raising of a temporary income tax, which was, until the 20th Century, how all combat was funded.

5/17/2008 09:07:00 pm  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

Got it in one, Blair (for once)

5/17/2008 09:38:00 pm  
Anonymous LGM said...

Interesting discussion.

What about this? Criminals get slavery or else starve slowly. An alternative for the real evil ones is permanent banishment and exile. There are some real useful places for the purpose.

Defense Force is a voluntary militia. That's simple enough and previously discussed many times. Pretty much everything to be said on this has been already.

Regarding defense, a corespondant mentioned that were it known that any govt functionary or politician within a regime that intiated agression would become a target for ritual slaughter, many may think twice beofre sending others to do their filthy work.

I thought to pass that one on for comment. I think he'd be interested to hear what others thought as well.

L

5/17/2008 09:55:00 pm  
Anonymous hanso said...

"The only government we would need would be a parliament and a judiciary. Parliament would meet once a year to appoint judges, set their salaries, and revise criminal and civil law."

I hope you missed out police by accident.

"The judiciary would be self-funding, as criminals would be punished only by being taxed. Violent criminals would be given preventative home detention."

You have not answered Comrade's and my objections. Surely you do not think a raged psychopath could be as safely kept in his own home as he could in a prison?

"Costa Rica gets by fine without them."

New Zealand is not Costa Rica. Besides, with Hugo Chavez brooding in the south, they might soon like to reconsider their policy.

"What about this? Criminals get slavery or else starve slowly. An alternative for the real evil ones is permanent banishment and exile."

Now this is getting somewhere. However there are few countries which would routinely accept dangerous criminals, and the cost of bribing them would outweigh the prison cost.

Personaly I like the government described in "The Constitution of New Freeland". It is set out to be small, strong, and effective at protecting the rights of Citizens, whether from each other, or from governments overseas.

Hanso

5/18/2008 08:29:00 am  
Anonymous NotYour Business said...

You've got your problem with libertarian party activists right here.

They insist in undermining what credibility you and your party accruen -- they hitch up their pants, take a deep breath, and march resolutely into the cauldron of complete stupidity.

Tell us what Rand thought of libertarians and anarchists again.

5/18/2008 09:44:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's accrue

5/18/2008 09:46:00 am  
Blogger Blair said...

I missed out police on purpose! There's no need for them. A libertarian society will give all citizens the same rights that police have now, including the right to protect their person and property, and the right to arrest and swiftly bring alleged criminals before a magistrate.

Why do you need an authoritarian government bureaucracy that does what citizens should and would be doing themselves? And does it badly I might add.

Surely you do not think a raged psychopath could be as safely kept in his own home as he could in a prison?

It depends. In an armed society it would be unusual for such a person to be captured alive instead of shot. It would then fall to the Judge to determine what would keep the public safest.

5/18/2008 10:13:00 am  
Blogger libertyscott said...

"A libertarian society will give all citizens the same rights that police have now"

So pray tell how I will carry out the investigation of a murder, with a private detective agency? Which has access to the database of people with past convictions managed by whom? The agency will go to a judge to get a search warrant of a suspect's home presumably.

What's to stop this "citizens' policing" becoming rank and corrupt? People with criminal intent buy security forces and then can run their own theft and people trafficking racket, and somehow the victims have to buy another set of security forces to fight it out.

I'd happily pay voluntarily for Police. Partly because my insurance policies would cost less if I do so, but also because I want a professional law enforcement organisation that I (and those I love who are far less capable of self defence) can call upon, and can forensically investigate a scene.

I'll also pay for defence in NZ (as well as the UK as I am here). I don't want NZ bludging off of Australia deterring the risk of an Islamist Indonesia or Malaysia. Those advocating unarmed neutrality are extremely naive. Feel free to exit relationships with western allies, and watch your own territorial waters become the pillaging grounds for many others.

5/18/2008 10:52:00 am  
Anonymous hanso said...

Liberty Scott sums my point up.

"A libertarian society will give all citizens the same rights that police have now, including the right to protect their person and property, and the right to arrest and swiftly bring alleged criminals before a magistrate."

Utter idiocy. The part about the right to protect their person and property, that I can agree with. However your following statement give a clear demonstration of the split between libertarians and anarchists.

You assume citizens have a "responsibility" to defend each other. They do not. In your "libertarian" society, people have only as much security in their property and person as they have in combat skills, (or in money to hire people with combat skills).

A libertarian society provides an objective system of defence against force and fraud, which GARRUNTEES your safety, no matter your financial position. Those who believe that legitimite government services should be privatised, forget that it is only through the ability to be secure that private property can exist in the first place.

A true libertarian country WOULD allow private security and milita companies (these would be the only types of companies regulatable by the government) but they would also ensure a free, voluntairily funded, alternative.

Hanso

5/18/2008 11:37:00 am  
Blogger Comrade MOT said...

Yes, I mean what If some crack pot decides that he thinks Ive solen something of his, they He may arrest me and detain me. The magistrate may let me off the next day, but it's I bit rotten isn't it? Then my friends may try to arrest him for wrongful imprisonment, then there could be chaos.

I do agree with the right to self defense of course. But I think that the ability to use forensics and other specialist capabilities to investigate crime shouldn't be dependent on people's ability to pay. Also with private companies their is always a risk of bias by who is funding them.

If I got a warrant to arrest some guy for murder or something, then went to his house with my chums, and the guy fought, back, how could people tell who was the bad guy and who was not? I may get shot by someone who thinks I'm robbing the place.

5/18/2008 03:46:00 pm  
Blogger Blair said...

So pray tell how I will carry out the investigation of a murder, with a private detective agency?

Yes, but you could probably buy insurance that would cover that. It's likely that the insurance company would have their own investigative unit.

Which has access to the database of people with past convictions managed by whom?

Managed by the Justice Department. Convictions will be public record for anyone to access.

What's to stop this "citizens' policing" becoming rank and corrupt?

Capitalism and a strong judiciary. Corruption is bad for business.

I'd happily pay voluntarily for Police.

Well that's the idea. All citizens will have equal powers, so if you don't want to use them yourself, you can hire a professional.

Partly because my insurance policies would cost less if I do so, but also because I want a professional law enforcement organisation that I (and those I love who are far less capable of self defence) can call upon, and can forensically investigate a scene.

And what makes you think that an organisation with a profit motive would do this any less professionally than a Blue Bureaucrat?

I'll also pay for defence in NZ (as well as the UK as I am here). I don't want NZ bludging off of Australia deterring the risk of an Islamist Indonesia or Malaysia.

Me neither! Let's form a voluntary militia with likeminded folk!

Those advocating unarmed neutrality are extremely naive. Feel free to exit relationships with western allies, and watch your own territorial waters become the pillaging grounds for many others.

I am advocating neither disarming nor neutrality. Better property rights over our territorial waters would also fix the problem of defending them.

Yes, I mean what If some crack pot decides that he thinks Ive solen something of his, they He may arrest me and detain me. The magistrate may let me off the next day, but it's I bit rotten isn't it? Then my friends may try to arrest him for wrongful imprisonment, then there could be chaos.

Well it's not chaos, the Judge would rule on the arrest in one hit. If there is a case to answer, it goes to trial, if not, the person making the arrest is fined. That deters frivolous arrests.

I do agree with the right to self defense of course. But I think that the ability to use forensics and other specialist capabilities to investigate crime shouldn't be dependent on people's ability to pay. Also with private companies their is always a risk of bias by who is funding them.

LOL. Let's transpose some of that. "I do agree with the right to legal representation. But I think that the ability to seek expert legal advice shouldn't be dependent on people's ability to pay. Also with private firms there is always a risk of bias by who is funding them."

Most lawyers have a conflict of interest protocol. I don't see why insurance companies and private investigative firms would be any different.

If I got a warrant to arrest some guy for murder or something, then went to his house with my chums, and the guy fought, back, how could people tell who was the bad guy and who was not?

You answered your own question. You have a warrant. You could hire help and recoup the costs on conviction.

5/18/2008 06:34:00 pm  
Blogger libertyscott said...

Frankly if we get to the point that this is all we're arguing about by the time I retire it will be a monumental achievement. This in fact should be the parameters of political debate in a free society - how is defence and law and order to be maintained.

5/18/2008 10:29:00 pm  
Anonymous hanso said...

"Frankly if we get to the point that this is all we're arguing about by the time I retire it will be a monumental achievement. This in fact should be the parameters of political debate in a free society - how is defence and law and order to be maintained."

HELELUJIA

5/19/2008 07:39:00 am  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

I suppose you could say the point of this post by Peter is...a GST is not the answer to theft by the State.

5/19/2008 08:08:00 am  
Blogger Matt B said...

Always missing from these debates is a discussion about transactions costs, efficiency, what defines a public good and plausible alternatives in supplying them. That to me is the crux of the debate. Instead these debates are always between people who can imagine alternative ways of supplying protection and those who cannot.

Yawn.

5/19/2008 10:36:00 am  
Anonymous Elijah Lineberry said...

We spend $1.5 Billion on Defence, and $765 million on Prisons.

We have a Defence force costing billions but will not actually deploy them.

We have Prisons which are training grounds for criminals, and a soaring crime rate.

I therefore think I was right to ask what we get for our money.

5/19/2008 10:51:00 am  
Anonymous LGM said...

Elijah writes, "the point of this post by Peter is...a GST is not the answer to theft by the State."

That's right.

Further, a system based upon theft (taxation) is a system that enshrines crime right at its heart. Can't expect much of good to come from that...


LGM

5/19/2008 11:35:00 am  
Anonymous Mark.V. said...

I find it amusing the way Libertarianz tie themselves up in knots trying to work out a way to voluntarily fund a government. If a government provides a range of essential services e.g. police, judiciary, defence, it is entitled to ask for payment for providing these services. The manner this fee is paid needs to be decided.

On another matter, PC why do you describe Neal Boortz as a former libertarian? He describes himself as a libertarian on his web site.

5/20/2008 08:59:00 am  
Blogger PC said...

Mark V, you asked, "why do you describe Neal Boortz as a former libertarian? He describes himself as a libertarian on his web site."

He may call himself whatever he likes, but as long he's promoting a scheme in which taxes go up (even if only in the first year) and which calls for a crackdown on 'grey markets' then he is NOT a libertarian.

5/20/2008 10:41:00 am  
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10/29/2009 05:39:00 am  

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