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Peter you are asking essentially is is possible for a tax system to be corrupted. Yes it can be.

But if we started with a VAT of X%, on everything or a graduated income tax system in which all income regardless of source was taxed at whatever the rate structure was - we would be better off than we are now in my view.

In my view, the only people who benefit for the current system are tax accounts, lobbyists, politicians who get paid off and other crooks.

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