View Poll Results: What is the most important goal of tax collection?

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  • Collect necessary revenue in such a way as to maximize growth

    11 68.75%
  • Collect necesssary revenue in such a way as to incentivize positive behaviors

    3 18.75%
  • Collect revenue in such a way as to redistribute wealth

    2 12.50%
  • Collect revenue in such a way as to minimize wage disparity

    0 0%
  • Collect Revenue from certain groups and not from others

    0 0%
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Thread: What is the purpose of taxation?

  1. #41
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    I voted for:

    Collect necesssary revenue in such a way as to incentivize positive behaviors
    The basic economic logic of a tax code is pretty simple. Ideally, we want to tax things that we want people to do less of, and reduce taxes on things we want people to do more of. I'm not talking about hundreds of itemized deductions for various good deeds in the tax code...that's a horrible system. But I think this logic should apply more to the things we tax in the first place. Corporate taxes and sales taxes are especially bad, because they reduce demand even more during a recession in which we have a severe lack of demand. I'm much more receptive to income taxes and land/wealth taxes, because they don't really discourage positive behaviors (at least not to the same extent as corporate and sales taxes do). I also think we need to increase the gasoline tax fairly substantially.

    And beyond that, we should primarily be taxing the people from whom the government can generate the most revenue for the least harm (i.e. the wealthy).
    Last edited by Kandahar; 10-17-11 at 02:29 PM.
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  2. #42
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    So the state can collect money to fund social programs, the military/police, and to fund the state in necessary means..


  3. #43
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    Because the government is not taking money from the rich and giving it to those at lower levels. The government is taxing the rich more to fund the government because they derive the most benefit from the services provided by the government.
    So you're claiming that it is the wealthy who benefit more from such programs as food stamps, and other similar welfare programs? Or are you going to claim that those who do benefit most from these programs are paying their fair share of taxes to support them?
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  4. #44
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by SmokeAndMirrors View Post
    None of the above.

    The first and foremost purpose of taxation is to pay for the services, functions, and operations that the society have deemed important.
    I'd argue that that lines up with the goal of promoting growth. Can't have good growth if people are afraid for their safety or health, for example.

  5. #45
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Blaylock View Post
    So you're claiming that it is the wealthy who benefit more from such programs as food stamps, and other similar welfare programs? Or are you going to claim that those who do benefit most from these programs are paying their fair share of taxes to support them?
    No, I am saying the wealthy derive more benefit from the courts,schools, jails, Interstate system, Internet system, banks too big to fail, oil subsidies, big farm subsidies, optional wars, bloated military, tax cuts, airports, etc, etc, etc. All the government services and infrastructure that enables the the rich to grow their wealth while the middle class gets poorer.
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  6. #46
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    None of those answers make any sense. I think you should look at what your taxes pay for, then come back and rewrite the question.

  7. #47
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    I voted for:



    The basic economic logic of a tax code is pretty simple. Ideally, we want to tax things that we want people to do less of, and reduce taxes on things we want people to do more of. I'm not talking about hundreds of itemized deductions for various good deeds in the tax code...that's a horrible system. But I think this logic should apply more to the things we tax in the first place. Corporate taxes and sales taxes are especially bad, because they reduce demand even more during a recession in which we have a severe lack of demand. I'm much more receptive to income taxes and land/wealth taxes, because they don't really discourage positive behaviors (at least not to the same extent as corporate and sales taxes do). I also think we need to increase the gasoline tax fairly substantially.

    And beyond that, we should primarily be taxing the people from whom the government can generate the most revenue for the least harm (i.e. the wealthy).
    the problem with your "From each according to their ability" bit is while its politically favorable to tell the masses they won't be taxed enough to pay for what they want, what that attitude causes is the mess we are in today

    most of america doesn't pay their fair share and thus they have no incentive to reign in government spending



  8. #48
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    No, I am saying the wealthy derive more benefit from the courts,schools, jails, Interstate system, Internet system, banks too big to fail, oil subsidies, big farm subsidies, optional wars, bloated military, tax cuts, airports, etc, etc, etc. All the government services and infrastructure that enables the the rich to grow their wealth while the middle class gets poorer.
    that is a lie based on your opinion

    the poor use the jail system far more than the rich and the poor make up the majority of crime victims.


    the rest of your claim is pure and utter BS. if there were no government there would be no middle class per se and the poor would be groveling in the dirt like they did in feudal societies



  9. #49
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    There isn't really an answer to that question... It serves many purposes. Obviously the primary purpose is paying for things we as a society decide to spend on. Many other purposes fall in the category of incentivizing or decentivizing various actions. For example, we tax smoking more heavily than other products because of the extra costs it creates for society and we tax healthy food less than other products because we want to make preparing healthy meals at home a more attractive option than feeding your family at McDonalds. Adjustments to tax policy often serve economic goals. For example, we might decrease taxes on the middle class to increase consumer spending or decrease taxes on the rich to increase investment. Or we might make the tax scheme more progressive to counter balance an expanding rich poor gap or make it more regressive to increase the incentives to seek promotions.

    The constitution gives a similarly broad answer- to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States.

    So, there are many purposes. Asking that "the" purpose is for taxation is like asking somebody to tell you the one thing duct tape can be used for.
    Last edited by teamosil; 10-21-11 at 12:13 AM.

  10. #50
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    Re: What is the purpose of taxation?

    Quote Originally Posted by TurtleDude View Post

    the poor use the jail system far more than the rich and the poor make up the majority of crime victims.
    The jails provide protection for the rich and their property.

    Don't believe me, just ask some criminals if they have a need for jails.
    Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children. ~ Ancient American Indian Proverb

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