Assembled by John Sykes
By Matt Kibbe
... The U.S. tax code is one of the most underreported social inequalities of our time. It’s not just an economic issue, it’s a moral issue that boils down to a basic set of American values: Treat everyone the same as everybody else. Don’t punish success. Don’t hurt others, and don’t take their stuff.
Currently, the government violates these values “for the greater benefit of society,” giving tax breaks to incentivize certain behaviors while using tax hikes to discourage others. Small business owners that sell cigarettes or tanning sessions are discriminated against by “vice taxes” that can force stores to downsize, or close entirely. Two Americans may have the same income, but lifestyle differences (ie. whether they got married, bought a home, or gave to a charity) leave one wallet thinner than the other on Tax Day.
Picking winners and losers in the tax code is a form of social engineering, and it’s immoral at its most fundamental level. Think about it. Who gave the suits in Washington the authority to make value judgments on our lifestyle choices, and then use the tax code as a tool to encourage some decisions over others?...