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A Postscript to Congressman Linder’s Article on the FAIR Tax by Karen Walby, Ph.D

In a recent FAIRtax Friday article by John Linder, he commented that “If we had been under the FAIRtax in 2012, 10 percent of all corporations in America would have collected 89 percent of all the taxes on goods.  These are big corporations with totally computerized ordering and sales systems. It would be difficult for them to help you cheat even if they were inclined to do so.”

I thought you would like to view the data behind that statement since it is key to appreciating how the FAIRtax will improve compliance and reduce tax evasion.

The IRS has a Corporation Statistics Program which produces estimates of the various line items on the U.S. Corporation Income Tax Return (Forms 1120 and 1120-S).  The data presented below are based on a sample of the actual returns of all active corporations for the 2012 tax year.

The IRS classifies corporation tax returns by the size of business receipts.  In the table below we have consolidated the data for both C and S corporations* that are in the Wholesale and Retail Trade industry.  Since the FAIRtax does not tax sales to businesses, it must be noted that the IRS does not report data separately for retailers and wholesalers. This is not surprising since there are many wholesalers who also sell at retail:  many building supply and hardware stores sell both to construction subcontractors as well as to “do-it-yourselfers.”  However, these data should still be representative of the percentage of retail sales done by large businesses.

The table shows the number of corporate tax returns and the business receipts (sales) for each business size category.

There are 5.2 million corporations engaging the Wholesale and Retail Trade industry with combined sales of $14.6 trillion.  Ten percent are corporations with greater than $2.5 million in annual sales.  These Top Ten percent account for sales of $12.9 trillion.  That’s 89% of total sales in the Wholesale and Retail Trade industry.  Clearly the large corporations dominate the Wholesale and Retail Trade industry.  These corporations are going to accurately report their sales and the sales taxes collected on them.

Graph
We also want to note that there was a typo in Linder’s same article.  Thanks to the reader who pointed it out.  [We do read your comments.]  The article referred to a “74,000-word code.”  That should have read “74,000-page code.”  That number includes all the IRS code, regulations, and IRS rulings.  But the typo begged the question:  Just how many words are there in the tax code?  TEN MILLION.

The Tax Foundation recently calculated the number of words in the income tax code and regulations (excluding legal rulings) to be more than 10 million.  The King James Version of the Bible has only 783,137.  And in contemporary literature, the very popular seven volume series of Harry Potter novels amounts to only 1,084,170 words.   It is no wonder that the code is incomprehensible, even to tax experts.  It takes no less than wizardry to understand it!

ABOUT KAREN WALBY, PH.D.

Karen Walby, Ph.D., is the Director of Research Americans For Fair Taxation

Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations and the FairTax by Rep. Dave Brat (VA-7)

Adam Smith, the father of economics, published An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations nearly 240 years ago[i]. Soon after, an extraordinary flourishing of innovation and human well-being took off and transformed the globe. According to economist Deirdre McCloskey, the average American today is roughly 30 to 100 times better off than our ancestors in 1800[ii], the point when humanity began to escape crushing poverty. Notwithstanding modern prosperity, however, human nature hasn’t changed much. Smith’s insights remain relevant.

The Wealth of Nations considers taxation in Book V, Chapter 2: “Of the Sources of the General or Public Revenue of the Society.” In the prior chapter, “Of the Expenses of the Sovereign or Commonwealth,” he describes the primary functions of the national government. Some—like defense—need to be paid for by general revenue, while others—like transportation infrastructure—can be built and maintained with fees paid by users.

Revenue policy should fund the necessary expenses of the government. Not to benefit this or that industry. Not to advance social objectives. Certainly not to suppress political speech.

Smith set out four goals for evaluating tax options. First, tax contributions should be proportionate to abilities. Second, the rules should be certain and not arbitrary. Third, taxes should be levied when and how its payment is most convenient. Fourth, collection should minimize administrative overhead.

He then evaluated possible tax bases using those principles: rents of land and houses, profits, wealth, wages, head taxes, and consumption. He concluded that the ideal tax bases are residential property and consumption, particularly on luxury goods.

What does Adam Smith have to do with the FairTax? Everything. Setting aside property taxes—a state and local issue—consider how his principles relate to a consumption tax like the FairTax.

Is it proportionate to abilities? Yes. Those who earn more also consume more, thus contributing proportionately more to the general revenue. Savings—which our current tax system discourages but the FairTax would not—provide no current consumption benefits. They are deferred consumption, which in the meantime enables others to borrow to finance education, infrastructure, factories, and much more while also reducing the trade deficit.

Is the FairTax certain and not arbitrary? Yes. Everyone pays the same, known rate on consumption.

Is it convenient to pay? Yes. Merchants include the tax in the prices of final goods and services, which consumers pay all at once. Businesses simply remit the revenue to the government from time to time.

The FairTax also minimizes administrative overhead. The U.S. has around six million businesses.[iii] Not all would collect revenue under the FairTax, since many don’t sell directly to consumers. Current tax law requires the processing of six million business returns, 150 million individual and household tax returns[iv] (some overlap), and various trust, foundation, and other returns that are processed today, all under a complex, burdensome, and unFairTax code.

A broad-based consumption tax like the FairTax has other benefits. It eliminates the bureaucratic discretion that enabled the illegal and corrupt targeting of political speech, as the Richmond Tea Party experienced first-hand. Less taxation on productive activities yields greater physical and human capital investment by businesses and individuals, which makes workers more productive, boosting their compensation and standards of living while also increasing returns to saving.

It eliminates a major source of favor trading between Congress and big businesses. The concentrated interests of businesses associations create enormous pressure for Congress to provide tax preferences. The FairTax dramatically reduces the ability of political insiders to manipulate the tax system.

After nearly a decade of poor economic performance, we need comprehensive, pro-growth, simplifying tax reform like the FairTax. That’s why I’m a proud cosponsor of H.R. 25. To fully restore the American Dream, however, we must also pursue major regulatory and spending reforms.

We can have even more of the market-tested innovations that improve our lives and that would have astounded Adam Smith and our ancestors. Smart policy reforms—like the FairTax—can clear the path.

[i] http://www.econlib.org/library/Smith/smWN.html

[ii] https://www.aei.org/publication/perhaps-the-most-powerful-defense-of-market-capitalism-you-will-ever-read/

[iii] http://www.census.gov/content/dam/Census/library/publications/2015/econ/g12-susb.pdf, Appendix Table 1, pp. 7.

[iv] https://www.irs.gov/uac/SOI-Tax-Stats—Individual-Statistical-Tables-by-Size-of-Adjusted-Gross-Income, “All Returns: Selected Income and Tax Items: 2013”

ABOUT CONGRESSMAN DAVE BRAT

Congressman Dave Brat represents Virginia’s 7th congressional district, serving since 2014 when he won a special election. Brat is a member of the House Budget Committee, Education and the Workforce Committee, and Small Business Committee. He has a Ph.D. in economics, formerly was a professor of economics and chairman of the economics department at Randolph Macon College, and previously worked for the World Bank and Arthur Andersen.

EDITORS NOTE: To learn more about the FairTax please click here.

IRS: Legally Blind…Literally!

“One should judge a man mainly from his depravities. Virtues can be faked. Depravities are real.” – Klaus Kinski

The last two years have once again provided the American people with great illumination into the arrogant, deceitful and nefarious ways in which the IRS treats the hardworking citizens who pay their tab. Hardly a day, week or month has gone by without a new revelation that left most of us dropping our jaws further and further and further.

In fact, there has been so much lawlessness that people became almost immune to the escalating nature of their egregious conduct. This week’s vile and disgusting revelation: the agency had a legally blind individual conducting the inspection of Lois Lerner’s hard drive. Yes, you read that right – the IRS used a blind employee to inspect Lerner’s hard drive.

Political appointees who play cat and mouse with Congressional investigators are something we’ve come to expect. But for a federal agency like the IRS to engage a blind employee as a pawn in a political chess match is best described in terms of moral depravity.

It’s yet another reason Congress must pass the FairTax Plan as soon as possible.

The FairTax is the only tax reform/replacement plan that disbands, defunds and eliminates the IRS. The flat tax doesn’t, the proposed income tax reforms don’t and neither do the other plans bantered about by various Members of Congress. Nope – they have to pass the genuine article, the real deal, the one and only FairTax Plan.

Peggy Green-Ernst to lead AFFT government relations

This is why I am so pleased to announce the FairTax campaign’s newest secret weapon for getting the FairTax passed. Enter Texas FairTax supporter, Peggy Green-Ernst, who has joined AFFT as our new Director of Government Relations. In this role Peggy will be directing AFFT’s federal and state government relations and lobbying activities, and will be expanding the FairTax Memorial initiative that was first initiated by the Florida FairTax team.

Peggy hails from the great state of Texas where she serves as the volunteer legislative director for the Texas FairTax organization. Her professional and political career encompassed the corporate, business, academic and nonprofit sectors, where she was:

  • Executive Director of the Housing Roundtable
  • Director of Government Relations for the National Gypsum Company
  • Commissioner, Texas National Research Laboratory Commission (appointed by then-Texas Governor Ann Richards)

Peggy is a seasoned political strategist who excels in coalition building, policy analysis, political action committee (PAC) administration and media management. She’s smart, engaging and politically savvy.

A Texan by birth, Peggy spent her formative years enjoying an international education while supporting her father’s military career. She graduated from Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, TX with a master’s degree in business administration.

Peggy will be joining AFFT Chairman and President Steve Hayes in Washington in a few weeks and has already begun to aggressively book meetings with cosponsors, cosponsor prospects and other influencers. It’s going to be a great week in Washington when Peggy comes to town. I can’t wait to hear all about it!

Got Purpose?

“Light yourself on fire with passion and people will come from miles to watch you burn.” – John Wesley

In my prior professional career, one of the jobs I enjoyed the most was serving the company’s executive leadership as a 360°, leadership feedback coach. 360° feedback is a human resources tool in which employees and leaders receive confidential, anonymous performance feedback from direct reports, peers and management via a competency management tool incorporating the company’s preferred management competencies and leadership behaviors.

The feedback is then shared with the employee during a two and a half to three hour confidential coaching session. Coaching preparation is intense and includes analyzing and aligning both numerical and graphical data with unvarnished, sometimes brutal, written commentary.

Occasionally, I would prepare a report that portrayed an extraordinary leader. The more I analyzed the person the more excited I became to meet them. And when I finally came face-to-face with the individual behind the numbers and graphs, it didn’t take long to understand why the executive was revered as a powerhouse leader.

Time after time, what separated the truly superb leader from the good or even great leader was passion and purpose.

Powerhouse leaders have a passion for what they do, a passion for leading people and a clearly defined sense of purpose for who they are and where they are going. These are truly remarkable people. I saw that kind of passion and purpose this week in a young man who came to my home to prepare his company’s moving estimate. In the course of gathering information he shared that he was of Cuban descent and spoke about the loss of freedom he experienced in his early years while living in his native country. I wish you could have seen the intensity of expression when he described the freedom he gained when coming to America. He then asked me what I did. I told him about the FairTax®. He immediately got it, and quickly commented on how important it is that America understands the lost freedom inherent in taxing income. He then began to tell me about a book – and he insisted I read it. He also told me about the author’s freedom project and why it had ignited in him such an extraordinary passion; so much so that he committed to donating $100 per paycheck to buy more and more books so he could give them to people that he meets through his work.

Folks, that’s the power of passion! It’s a power so strong that it drove this young man to make a huge financial commitment for an advocacy project that he uniquely understands – individual freedom. 

Imagine what could happen to the FairTax campaign if this movement experienced an explosion of passion and purpose – passion for accelerating the pace of the campaign’s progress, passion for driving a new awakening about what it means to have freedom from the tyranny of income taxation and the IRS, and passion for being a nation that has the courage to enact a tax plan that is fair and simple for all taxpayers – regardless of income, family size, marital status or political persuasion.

Have you found your FairTax purpose – your FairTax passion? As Bishop T.D. Jakes said, “If you can’t figure out your purpose, figure out your passion.  For your passion will lead you right into your purpose.” Is your purpose in serving as a grassroots volunteer – maybe telling people you meet about the FairTax, sharing Facebook posts, supporting local education efforts or joining Glen Terrell’s letters to the editor team? Is your passion seeing the FairTax campaign gain new cosponsors in Congress or in recruiting new AFFT 1040 Club members? Whatever your FairTax passion, whatever your FairTax purpose, bring it on! If you don’t know, I challenge you to jump in with both feet and begin exploring different opportunities.

You may be amazed at what happens next.

The FairTax Deserves An Up or Down Vote by U.S. Senator Jerry Moran (KS)

Congress and the American people are ready to have a conversation about comprehensive tax reform, and now more than ever there is the opportunity to replace our deeply flawed tax system with a commonsense system that is simpler and more growth-oriented.

Senator Moran Discusses FairTax Legislation on U.S. Senate Floor:

Many of my colleagues suggest that tax reform should be achieved by creating a fairer, more balanced system with lower rates and a broader base – I couldn’t agree more. But, I am also convinced we must think bigger if we are to capitalize on this opportunity for economic growth and new prosperity.

Senator Jerry Moran (KS).

I am proud to join my colleague, Senator David Perdue of Georgia, in introducing the

Fair Tax Act of 2015. As a longtime proponent of the FairTax®, it is a privilege to lead this effort in Congress following the retirement of Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia from the U.S. Senate. Thanks also to the thousands of FairTax advocates, grassroots volunteers and Americans For Fair Taxation leadership for your steadfast support of this legislation.

The FairTax is a significant step in the direction of individual freedom, a fundamental concept of our nation’s founding. By eliminating the withholding of federal income taxes and social security taxes from paychecks, it would allow Americans to keep the entirety of their income and put individuals in charge of their own finances rather than the government or, more specifically, the Internal Revenue Service.

All Americans have the right to assume that the IRS, which exercises great authority over the taxpayers of this country, is operating in a neutral, fair and appropriate manner. Unfortunately, we now know that the IRS under the Obama Administration has failed in those basic tenets. To quote one of my colleagues from across the aisle, the IRS has done “permanent damage” to its reputation and legacy through the political targeting of conservative nonprofit groups. Rendered obsolete by the FairTax, the IRS would become a thing of the past.

The benefits of the FairTax are immediate and obvious. This year, Americans will likely work 100 days or longer to earn enough to pay their share of federal, state and local taxes. Americans will then spend billions of hours preparing their tax returns this spring.

A 2013 study by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University estimates that Americans spend between $300 billion and $1 trillion each year attempting to comply with the 70,000+ page tax code. There is no reason why paying taxes should be so confusing and complicated. The burden this process places on individuals and small businesses must be relieved.

But the problems with our current tax code go deeper than the complexities of paperwork, and the FairTax gets to the very root of those problems. Loaded with thousands of loopholes, exceptions, exemptions, credits, deductions, you name it – our tax code grossly manipulates the decision-making of businesses in our country.

By some estimates, U.S. companies are currently holding more than $2 trillion overseas. We can only speculate how much foreign investment continues to sit on the sidelines when it could be brought to America to create jobs and stimulate economic growth. For international businesses looking to relocate to the United States, the FairTax would be welcome news.

With the FairTax, Americans would no longer be punished for working hard to make money to support their families. All Americans, regardless of economic status, would be on equal footing and achieve greater freedom.

Overhauling the American tax system is not an easy undertaking, but the economic need for a leaner and fairer tax code has never been greater. It should be common sense: a simplified tax code will help boost the economy. With no tax on savings or investment, there will be more jobs and greater productivity.

The FairTax deserves to be heard in a committee setting, debated, and given an up or down vote. Americans know that when our economy is strong they can provide for their families, and see their children and grandchildren pursue the American Dream. The FairTax is a commonsense step toward restoring that dream.

So Long 113th Congress – Hello 114th

“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language. And next year’s words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning.” – T.S. Eliot

On Tuesday, Rep. Paul Ryan (WI-1) succeeded Rep. Dave Camp (MI-4) as the new Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means. This powerful committee oversees the nation’s tax legislation and Ryan has already signaled that major tax reform is going to be a high priority.

When interviewed by the Washington Examiner in September, Ryan indicated his focus would be pro-growth legislation and moving away from static scoring if he became Chairman of Ways and Means.

This is game changing for the FairTax because static scoring is the traditional scoring methodology for proposed tax legislation that estimates revenue generation, but it does not reflect the impact a piece of legislation may have on economic growth or recession.

Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch went so far as to label static scoring as a “downright dumb and intellectually dishonest” methodology.

To illustrate Hatch’s point, Dailer Caller’s Rachael Stolzfoos pointed out, “Under the CBO and JCT’s current “static” scoring system, an income tax rate increase from 30 percent to 100 percent would give the government a 70 percent increase in tax revenue — an analysis which leaves out the obvious fact that few people would be willing to work at all if 100 percent of their paycheck went to the federal government.”

Given the way that HR 25 has been previously scored by the JCT (Joint Committee on Taxation), we wholeheartedly agree with Chairman elect Ryan that it is long past time that Congress use dynamic scoring when evaluating tax reform legislation.

Ryan also indicated he likes “specifics” and wants “ideas” that “people are willing to fight for,” even “if they don’t go all the way.” That’s great news for the FairTax.

H.R. 25 / S. 122, The FairTax Act, is the most specific, most detailed most researched of any tax reform plan before Congress. And for 15 years the American people have stood behind and fought for its’ passage. And our fight continues today.

We congratulate Chairman-elect Ryan and look forward to working with him in the coming months. And, we thank outgoing Chairman Dave Camp for his efforts towards getting a first ever, Ways and Means vote on H.R. 25.

Save serious time and cash at FairTaxRewards.org

If you were going to shop online, please sign up for and use FairTaxRewards.com. There is no cost to sign up and it is simple to use. You can use this mega mall to get Black Friday and Cyber Monday bargains at over 2,500 of America’s favorite retailers including Walmart, Best Buy, Target, Kohl’s, PetSmart, Macy’s, 1-800 Flowers and Old Navy – and lots of local retailers too!

And your FairTaxRewards.com mega mall gives you exclusive access to daily deals and coupons that provide significant savings along withCashBack earnings for you and a payment to the FairTax campaign on everything you buy. So, this year relax, register and let the savings fly!

The FairTax – the best gift of all

The FairTax is the only tax replacement plan that will generate jobs, stimulate the economy and eliminate the IRS. That’s a gift worth giving! So why not buy an AFFT membership for everyone on your shopping list. For as little as $5 per person, you can sponsor someone for AFFT membership. Just click here or go to FairTax.org and click on the membership button.

Finally, next Thursday is Thanksgiving. Erma Bombeck once said, “Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-time takes twelve minutes. This is not coincidence.”

Happy Thanksgiving and happy half time!

Two Blockbuster IRS Annoucements

Yesterday, in a blockbuster announcement, Thomas Kane, Deputy Assistant Chief Counsel for the IRS, wrote in a sworn lawsuit declaration that former IRS senior manager Lois Lerner’s now infamous BlackBerry was “removed or wiped clean of any sensitive or proprietary information and removed as scrap for disposal in June 2012.”

The magnitude of lies, deceit and corruption is incredible isn’t it? But that’s how it is when an out-of-control bureaucracy does the political bidding of Congress.

Thankfully, the FairTax® will eliminate the IRS and replace the income tax code with a simple and fair national sales tax. For the first time in 200 years, the American people will have independence from oppressive income taxation.

Much like when Gandhi sought independence for India and Pakistan and when asked about his non-violent protest in support of that goal he said, “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.”

For years, Washington’s elites have ignored, laughed and even fought the FairTax Plan. But as the IRS targeting investigation has unfolded, the laughing has all but stopped and the FairTax is being talked about more and more as a viable alternative to the current tax code.

More importantly, “experts” are openly discussing it as the only tax reform plan that can eliminate a completely corrupt and out-of-control IRS. 

Meanwhile, during this election year, most members of Congress continue to operate with their usual level of arrogance; acting like they own their elected office. Yet, make no mistake; they secretly fear being ousted in any primary election when their electorate finally gets smart. Just ask former Majority Leader Eric Cantor.

The ouster numbers, however, are not currently in favor of We the People.

As the Washington Post stated in June, “Overall, voter turnout among the 25 states that have held primaries is down 18 percent from the 2010 election, according a study by the Center for the Study of the American Electorate. There were almost 123 million age-eligible voters in these primary states, but only about 18 million of them voted.” With an average of 15% of the eligible voters turning out in primary elections, an average of 40,000 voters decided the primary election.

A new initiative in the FairTax campaign aims to change that dynamic. 

We know that Members are most influenced by groups that have large numbers of paying members in their districts. Imagine the influence on just one Congressional district if AFFT had 3,000 paying members who could influence 1, 5, or 10 voters. Now we have their attention!

As a 501(c)(4), AFFT cannot directly participate in political campaigns, but we can let our supporters know if a candidate supports the FairTax Plan. And, those supporters can take that knowledge to the election booth.

Today, AFFT is announcing a new AFFT membership drive designed to increase our sphere of influence in Washington and accelerate passage of the FairTax. 

Each of you is being asked to become a paying member of AFFT. Annual membership plans begin at $5.00 and best of all, your membership payment will be divided equally between AFFT and your state FairTax organization!

Your membership will help fund greater efforts at both the local and national levels. And, in exchange for your paid membership, you will receive a credit in the FairTax.org store equal to 10% of your paid membership.

And here’s how you can multiply your membership impact and AFFT’s ability to make Congress listen. Think of 5 or 10 family members, employees or friends and sponsor them for AFFT membership! Please make sure you let these individuals know in advance that you would like to sponsor their membership so they do not hit “unsubscribe” or “spam” when we begin providing them with information on the FairTax Plan.

You will get store credit, your state will still receive their share of your membership and you will have magnified your impact!

Napoleon Hill said, “You must get involved to have an impact.”

Don’t delay – go to FairTax.org and click on “Become a Member” today.

RELATED ARTICLE: Campaigning Against Tax Inequality

Georgia FairTax® Scores A Major Victory

The media’s eyes were on the state of Georgia this week as voters went to the polls in their Republican runoff election for the U.S. Senate. The Georgia FairTax (GFFT) organization played a pivotal role in helping educate voters on where candidates stood on the FairTax® Plan.

The monumental effort began in 2012, led by volunteer GFFT state director Jim Duffie and GFFT board chairman Bill Fogarty, when the GFFT team developed and published a comprehensive non-partisan candidate scorecard for rating candidates for elective office on their support of the FairTax.

In preparation for the 2014 election, GFFT volunteers began identifying and contacting candidates from both the Republican and Democrat parties. In addition, they researched positions of candidates on tax reform, volunteering hundreds of hours to bird-dog candidates and document what they actually said about tax reform during campaign stump speeches.

The team then offered candidates from both political parties a telephonic or in-person briefing on what the FairTax is, how it differs from proposed flat and current income tax systems and if desired, how to defend it from attacks.

Thanks to the generosity of GA FairTax supporters, all candidates who accepted the GFFT FairTax briefing were given a specially prepared binder containing copies of the FairTax white papers submitted to the 2013 U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means Tax Reform Study Group. These binders were a labor of love by GFFT volunteers and left a very strong impression on candidates regarding the depth of research that has gone into the FairTax legislation.

U.S. Senate candidate David Purdue accepted GFFT’s in-person offer, and went on to request an extended briefing with Phil Hinson and other GFFT leaders to ensure he understood the details of the legislation.

Perdue then made it a point to address tax reform while on the stump, noting that he was “a fighter for the FairTax.” Purdue’s diligence in learning about and fighting for the FairTax paid off when he was declared the victor in Tuesday’s run-off election.

This outstanding team effort by the GFFT serves as a model of what can be done across the nation.

Congratulations GFFT – we are FairTax proud!

Rubio: On Tax Day 2014

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) on Tax Day 2014 notes, “Tax reform is critical. And it’s not just critical to take the hassle out of our lives. It’s critical for the economic future of our country. Our economy is stagnant. It’s not growing fast enough. It’s not creating enough jobs. And by the way, about 40% of the jobs that it is creating pays $16 an hour or less.”

Is reform of the tax code needed or a scraping of the entire income tax? Many are calling for either a flat tax or FairTax system.

To mark Tax Day 2014, Rubio sent out the below video addressing constituent concerns about the broken tax code system. Rubio points to the tax codes stifling effect on the economy as proof of the need for tax reform:

[youtube]http://youtu.be/RteG2ceXtk8[/youtube]

In the video, Rubio outlines various disconcerting facts about the increasingly complicated tax code and the unnecessary burdens it places on taxpayers:

  1. It takes 13 hours for the average taxpayer to file their taxes, including record keeping, planning, as well as filling out forms.
  2. Last year, Americans spent 6.1 billion hours and $168 billion complying with all their tax filing requirements.
  3. The tax code, rules and regulations now totals more than 73,000 pages, as opposed to 400 pages when it was created in 1913.
  4. Americans will pay $3 trillion in federal taxes and $1.5 trillion in state and local taxes this year.
  5. Americans must work 111 days this year to pay their federal, state and local taxes.

Rubio:

“One of the things holding back our economy is a broken tax code. We have a tax code, for example, that punishes companies for investing their profits back into their businesses, to hire more people, to give their workers raises, to expand their operations. We have a tax code that actually encourages our employers to take their business overseas. Those are some of the things we have to fix as well. So I agree with you wholeheartedly, and that’s why I hope this November we’ll have new leadership here in Washington that will move on this important item.”

RELATED STORY: Obama has Proposed 442 Tax Hikes Since Taking Office

Confirmed: The IRS Is Weaponized

It’s official! A senior member of Congress has publicly said what FairTax® supporters have known for years: The IRS is the political weapon of choice for the ruling elite!

During a recent speech to the Center for American Progress, Senator Charles Schumer (NY) called on the Executive Branch of government to bypass Congress and use the IRS to ensure that certain conservative leaning non-profits are “weakened” and their funding “curtailed”. Why?

According to numerous media reports, Schumer stated, “It is clear that we will not pass anything legislatively as long as the House of Representatives is in Republican control, but there are many things that can be done administratively by the IRS and other government agencies—we must redouble those efforts immediately.”

This should strike fear in every single citizen, regardless of political ideology. 

Congressman Schumer’s agenda is to silence the Republican majority. During the 70’s, President Nixon’s agenda was to silence the then Democratic majority. And therein lies the problem.

When the ruling class uses the IRS and the tax code to silence dissenting opinion and to control legislative agendas, all Americans lose their voice, regardless of political affiliation. And, when the means of silence is utilizing an agency that historically incorporates fear, intimidation and imprisonment as a means of enforcement, the slippery slope has begun.

It’s now pretty clear why the requested investigation of IRS abuses of conservative leaning non-profits is not going anywhere. And probably won’t.

It’s probably also why, during the 2013 tax season, nearly 20 million taxpayer calls for assistance will go unanswered. That’s right – at a time when the tax code has blown up to nearly 100,000 pages and the Obamacare regulations are in effect – good luck getting your or your preparer’s call answered. And if the IRS does answer the phone, National Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson indicated they will only answer basic questions until April — after that, you are totally on your own. Gee thanks.

Are you elderly, disabled or low income and do you use the IRS to help you prepare your return? Sorry Charlie. They don’t do that anymore either and if you write asking for assistance, don’t hold your breath for a response – only about half the letters they receive are going to get a written response.

One can only assume the IRS is too busy supporting various political agenda’s to focus on their core mission, which is “as…one of the world’s most efficient tax administrators…. To provide America’s taxpayers top quality service by helping them understand and meet their tax responsibilities and enforce the law with integrity and fairness to all.”

There is an answer to this problem.  The FairTax® Plan.

It is a simple and fair solution that is before the Committee on Ways and Means awaiting a vote. Your voice is needed now more than ever. HR 25 is a fair and simple tax replacement plan that replaces the current income tax code and abolishes the IRS.

No more unanswered IRS calls or mail, or worrying about how to prepare your tax return – there are no tax returns with the FairTax Plan. Under the FairTax your federal tax is paid each and every time you purchase new goods and services – at the cash register. And with the unique FairTax “Prebate”, your essential goods and services are always tax-free.

Don’t allow your voice to be silenced by a tax code that only allows the political agenda of the day. Contact your Representatives today, tomorrow and the next day. Call their Washington office. Call their district office.

And when Members of Congress are willing to stand tall for the FairTax, like Congressman Ander Crenshaw (FL-4) who recently released this message stating his continued support for the FairTax, take time to thank them for their support.

As Winston Churchill said, “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”

Finally, political commentator and former Washington Post editorialist Mark Shields lamented this week about the slow progress of tax reform in Congress.

Exposing Tax Filing Costs

As part of National Taxpayer Burden Month, Watchdog Wire is presenting a series of interviews, columns and videos dealing with the current progressive income tax system. The current income tax was created 100 years ago with the passage of the Sixteen Amendment to the US Constitution.

As part of our National Tax Burden Month activities we are highlighting a series of videos produced by Kerry Bowers, the State Director for Nevada FairTax. For 13 years Bowers lived in Florida, the last 4 as the Panhandle Director for the Florida FairTax Educational Association.

According to the Fair Tax website:

The FairTax is a national sales tax that treats every person equally and allows American businesses to thrive, while generating the same tax revenue as the current four-million-word-plus word tax code. Under the FairTax, every person living in the United States pays a sales tax on purchases of new goods and services, excluding necessities due to the prebate. The FairTax rate after necessities is 23% and equal to the lowest current income tax bracket (15%) combined with employee payroll taxes (7.65%), both of which will be eliminated.

Bowers support to FFTEA and AFFT has been through legislative expertise specific to HR 25/S 122, computer presentations, and video productions. The following is a video presentation exposing the true tax filing costs born by every taxpayer.

To video more video presentations by Kerry Bowers go to his YouTube Channel.

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Disclaimer: The author is on the Board of Directors of the Florida FairTax Educational Association

FairTax Proponents Seeking Support from Florida Rep. Vern Buchanan (CD-16)

In an email to supporters Mark Gupton, Managing Director for Florida FairTax Educational Assn., Inc., states, “In conjunction with the National FairTax Strategic Planning Committee, Americans for Fair Taxation and the FairTax Strategic Advisory Team, FFTEA will support their action by devoting a considerable amount of time, effort and resources towards a District Targeting Plan for Florida Congressional District 16.”

Rep. Vern Buchanan represents FL CD-16.

Rep. Buchanan is the only Florida member of Congress to serve on the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over tax policy, international trade, health care and Social Security. Florida FairTax wants Rep. Buchanan to become a co-sponsor of HR 25 – Fair Tax Act of 2009.

It is generally believed that a tax reform plan will advance out of the House Ways & Means Committee during 2013.

“Tax related issues will be in two stages: 1. Dealing with the so called fiscal cliff and debt limit problems sometime in early 2013. 2. Followed by moving a tax reform plan from the W & M Committee to the entire House of Representatives for an eventual floor vote. We have received indications through various channels that FairTax will be on the agenda as one of the choices for the W & M Committee to hear. Chairman Camp is committed, more so than any previous Chairman, to having FairTax receive a vote. This is a major step forward and one for which we have the best chance of advancing FairTax,” notes Gupton.

Florida delegation members co-sponsoring HR 25 are:  Jeff Miller (R – 01), Ander Crenshaw (R – 04), John L. Mica (R – 07), Bill Posey (R – 08), Richard Nugent (R-11), Gus M. Bilirakis (R – 12) and Dennis Ross (R – 15). Florida makes up 13% of the co-sponsors.

Mr. Jim Hoey has agreed to accept a leadership role in FL-16 by becoming the Florida FairTax Congressional District Director. In addition, Florida FairTax has established a home page just for FL CD-16 which may be viewed by clicking here.