Jim Terry
Chaos and complexity: That’s how politicians control us
By Jim Terry
April 9, 2024

The two worst times of the year for most Americans are the day they receive their property appraisal notices for taxation purposes and April 15, when income tax filings are due. The property tax and the income tax are the most inefficient forms of taxation man has devised. Both are the most costly form of tax to administer; both require a vast amount of energy-they are government jobs programs; and both systems provide politicians great control over the people they are supposed to represent.

In January 2023, Representative Buddy Carter (R)-Ga., filed a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives to repeal the income tax and abolish the Internal Revenue Service. Carter told Fox News, “Armed, unelected bureaucrats should not have more power over your paycheck than you do.” Carter’s bill would replace the income tax with a national sales tax in the range of 20%-23%. The day Carter filed the bill, it was referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means. It has not been heard from since.

Democrats and many Republicans in Congress are opposed to the bill which would also end the estate tax, gift tax and payroll tax. A White House deputy press flack told Fox News, "President Biden adamantly opposes House Republicans’ plans to force an unprecedented tax hike onto middle-class families in exchange for yet more tax welfare for the rich and big corporations."

The claim that big corporations will benefit under a national sales tax is questionable since only in theory do corporations pay taxes. Taxes corporations may owe are factored into the cost of their goods or services and, therefore, passed along to customers. As for the middle class, the IRS statistics for 2020 on who pays the federal income tax, show that the top 50% of taxpayers-those with adjusted gross income of $42,184 or more paid 97.68% of all income tax collected by IRS in that year.

Below, are some issues to consider regarding each form of tax.

The 2022-2023 IRS tax tables indicate the income bracket for single filers ($41,776-$89,075) , pays a 22% income tax rate: a base tax of $4,807.50 is imposed with an additional tax of 22% on any amount over $41,775 up to the $89,075 cap for that bracket. In this case, an individual who earns $89,075 will pay a total tax of $15,213.28.

The same tax table for tax filers who are married and filing jointly has the 22% bracket fixed at the income range of $83,551-$178,150. The underlying tax is $9,615 plus 22% of any amount above $83,550 to the $178,150 cap.

If the married couple filing jointly has the same income as the single filer in the illustration above, $89,075, they would pay $10,830.50 in income tax.

These illustrations show how manipulative and complex the current income tax system is compared to a simple sales tax applied to all purchases.

IRS statistical data for tax year 2020 indicate: 164,358,792 tax returns were filed; total adjusted gross income for all filings was $12.59 trillion. The U.S. Census of 2020 reported the US population was 331,449,281. Thus, about 49.5% of the U.S. population reported income to the IRS.

The total expenditure for goods and services in the United States in 2020 was $14 Trillion. A 23% tax rate would bring in to the federal treasury $3.2 trillion. In 2020, the federal government took in $1.6 trillion in income taxes.

Why would anyone be opposed to repealing the income tax and replacing it with a national sales tax? Our current income tax has been with us since 1913, although it has undergone many changes and almost yearly Congressional updates. The income tax has become our favorite old pair of boots. As they have become worn, we have adapted to them. Most people don’t like change. While we say that our gut tells us we would like to repeal the income tax and abolish the IRS, our heart cautions us that we don’t like to step into the unknown. Abolishing one form of taxation we have had for more than one hundred years and replacing it with a new form is that leap into the unknown.

Politicians, however, see it differently. They know how easy it is to control the populous with the income tax. They can control behavior- reward their political friends and punish their political enemies through the current tax system. That’s why most politicians don’t want change.

I’m ready for change. I’m ready to be unshackled from a tax system used by politicians to engineer society in their vision. I’m ready to finally tell the politicians this is our country, not theirs.

© Jim Terry


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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Jim Terry

Jim Terry has worked in Republican grassroots politics for 40 years. Terry was an administrative assistant to a Republican elected official in Dallas for twenty years. In 1996, he ran for and was elected to Justice Court 2 in Dallas County where he served eight years. Contact Jim at tr4guy62@yahoo.com


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