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Author: foobar73 Big red star, 1000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 35357  
Subject: Re: Poll: tax poll epilouge Date: 1/7/2003 4:37 PM
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Doesn't it make sense, isn't it fair, isn't it logical, that the people who pay the most taxes in the first place should also be first in line for tax relief?

Your questions can't be answered without some numbers. What is the difference in income between those paying "the most taxes" and those paying less? What is the difference in taxes they pay? What is the basic level of income needed to sustain a reasonable living? What is the income needed to maintain a reasonable level of government and national infrastructure? Depending on these figures, the answer to your question may change.

To take a hypothetical example, consider a tropical island with three people on it. Suppose Person A makes $30,000 selling trinkets to tourists, while Person B and Person C make $10,000 each. "Taxes" are collected and pooled together to maintain the roads, buildings and other infrastructure on the island. A pays 50%, or $15,000, while B and C pay 50% as well, or $5,000 each. Person A clearly pays the most taxes out of the whole population, but, in some sense, taxes are fair, in that everyone pays at the same rate. If there is a reduction in taxes, it would make sense that they share the windfall equally.

However, if it costs $6,000 per person to provide them with reasonable food, shelter and clothing, then it might make more sense to tax A more heavily, so that B and C don't have to starve. B and C might instead only be made to pay $3,000 in taxes each, to allow them to continue to live on the island, while A would have to take up the slack and pay $19,000 in tax to maintain the island. Whether or not this is "fair" becomes a much more complicated issue (perhaps A uses the roads more, having a SUV whereas the others do not, and thus should pay more for road maintenance).

The questions you pose may be phrased simply, but the answers aren't clear-cut, especially without supporting numbers.
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