TAX AX: PRODUCT TRANSACTION
Benefits of 24 in 4:
Taxes, like currency, are necessary for civilization. Taxes can help solve problems. However, a mismanaged, chaotic tax system causes problems especially one that requires a mass of bookkeepers, accountants, lawyers, collectors and enforcers. Our present system consumes 6% of the Gross National product. Just what is consumed by the tax system?
Federal taxes destroy time, as many of us, struggling to complete convoluted tax returns, are reminded every April. In 1985, The Arthur D. Little Company calculated that compliance with the federal tax code--record-keeping, accountant-consulting--devoured 5.4 billion man-hours. What a grotesque waste of human industry.
Why? By "why" I mean the real reason for the the tax mess. Why? To process all the political favors that the habitual politicians enacted to attract campaign workers and contributions. We can have a real-time, unpoliticized overnight system that costs less than 1% of the GNP.
America needs two simple tax reforms. One uses dollars. The other uses what dollars symbolize: people's time. For dollar taxes, the present tax laws can be replaced by a simple product transaction tax administered by banks. When people exchange their goods or services under the economic umbrella of security, they should pay their fair share to support the umbrella.
If the umbrella costs 5% of the GNP/GDP then the product transaction tax should be 5%. The taxes will be divided among a hierarchy of units: zip, district, sub-region, region, nation and earth. The human and material resources wasted by uncountable and undecipherable exemptions would cease. A national referendum should be held to determine the national tax rate. Communities wanting more services should enact community service requirements.
Taxes will be automatically collected without any thought or time wasted by the taxpayer. Transactions going through the banking system would have the flat tax debited in the same way that banks charge a transaction fee. Non-banking trades can be reported via the telephone, e.g., Touch-Tone Manager.
The money currently spent by the IRS can be translated into a reduced workweek. Collected taxes will be divisioned (democratically apportioned) among the taxing units: zip code, town, district, subregion, region and nation. An automatic, universal tax will drastically reduce overall taxation while ensuring that all who benefit from the umbrella of economic stability pay their fair share on an on-going, painless basis.
The second form of taxes is direct taking of time. Remember, taxes are a taking of peoples' times through the symbols of their time. In many cases, it would be cheaper (cost less in time) to organize people to directly solve their problems rather than build up an insensitive, ineffective public bureaucracy through taxing in currency.
If a community wants more taxes for specific projects then they need to have special direct taxes passed by the citizens. Instead of matching grants, matching time or lifehours* should be required.
If a municipality is poor in dollars then
Requiring a self-tax through working for one's community is a better way to improve one's world than to generate an explosive situation trying to tax people in another world.
The approach of a community organizing rather than taxing its members' time for beneficial growth can be seen in the dollar-poor family that is rich in cleanliness and integrity. The family that provides for itself ends up having a richer life than one which uses the legal system to take from others. The way to get ahead is to work harder and smarter. The generated resentment of trying to tax others for self-support will create a backlash that will cost more in the long run than taxing locally.
This distant taxation is a new kind of welfare that will destroy the potential of the community lacking a strong dollar economy. As welfare has destroyed the family unit, it will destroy the community unit. Work is the salvation of both the family and the community.
In summary, we can have a 24-hour workweek with more time and money by two tax reforms. One, by implementing a product transaction tax on a national basis. Two, and by initiating community organization in which each person gives time on a regular basis, a direct tax in time rather than symbols.
Tax Ax: Product Transaction
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