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100 Million Unnecessary ReturnsA Simple, Fair, and Competitive Tax Plan for the United States$
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Michael J. Graetz

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780300122749

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300122749.001.0001

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Until the Second Child Speaks: First Principles of Responsible Reform

Until the Second Child Speaks: First Principles of Responsible Reform

(p.52) IV Until the Second Child Speaks: First Principles of Responsible Reform
100 Million Unnecessary Returns

Michael J. Graetz

Yale University Press

This chapter presents a competitive tax proposal that takes as its first principles the traditional goals of tax reform. These goals include: producing adequate revenue; promoting economic growth; increasing the international competitiveness of U.S. products, workers, and businesses; minimizing interference with private decision-making; streamlining compliance and administration; and, finally, distributing the burden of taxation fairly in accordance with the people's ability to pay. The chapter argues that any serious tax system reform in the United States must retain, as one of its first principles, the progressive structure which has been used for nearly a century. It reveals that wealth is even more unevenly distributed than income, with the wealthiest 1 percent owning about one-third of all wealth in the United States. The bottom 50 percent holds just 2.25 percent of all the wealth.

Keywords:   tax reform, revenue, economic growth, decision-making, administration, taxation

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