Letter: Tax burden

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  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 4:57 p.m.

    The reason I like the flat tax is because of the ease and accuracy of collecting it, and it might be seen as a more fair tax. The progressive tax punishes the higher incomes and by being different for every individual is open to dispute.

    Consider the fact that all the outgoing money of a business operation is income to somebody. It is income to workers as wages, owners as return on their investment, the workers and owners of the suppliers, even the workers and owners in foreign countries that make goods sold in America.

    By applying the flat rate to the out going money that a business operation spends and having the business operation remit that to the government there would be no need for individuals to file returns or chance for individuals to cheat. Audit would be easy and people themselves might be able understand the accounting.

    An employee would get paid all his pay and not have be concerned with income taxes.
    Business operations could have a much more ability to forecast and stay on top of their accounting.

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    Jan. 22, 2014 12:01 p.m.

    1. I got married out of Love -- not for sex, not for taxes.
    2. Those who are fighting for gay-marriage are trying to get the same thing.
    3. Tax filing status is a moot point -- most of their taxes will go up, not down.
    4. There are a lot more reasons than taxes...

    Insurance policies,
    Hospital visitation,
    Health and Death benefits,
    Estate and Inheritance,
    Power of Attorney,
    Stocks, bonds, dispersements,

    even - dare I say it -

    Divorce?! [and legally dividing up assests].

    Just to name a few...

    FYI - I'm not fighting for gay marriage, but I support it.
    I actually wanted Civil Unions or Domestic Partneships --
    to leave the term "marriage" out of it --

    but Utah and it's Amendment 3 nixed those as even being options.

    You made your bed, now sleep in it.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 11:14 a.m.

    @Ultra Bob
    "Our government(s) should be supported by a flat rate tax applied to every kind of personal income, without exception and without deductions."

    Contrary to popular belief, deductions actually favor the poor rather than the rich (think of things like the earned income tax credit, child deductions, and especially the mortgage deduction).

    From what I get out of Bob's post is that he believes a flat tax is a more towards a more progressive tax system compared to what we currently have (which is incorrect) so logically if one wanted to shift in the direction that is more progressive, one would select Obama.

    I wouldn't mind a bit of flattening but only in exchange for expanded services. It turns out that the US is more progressive in taxation than most of Europe but in exchange for there being basically no "47%" equivalent there, they also get their universal healthcare, cheap college, and enough benefits that they get back more than they put in so it leaves them better off then paying no taxes but having to deal with paying for those things themselves.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 10:18 a.m.

    Our tax burden is ever increasing.

    You get taxed when you earn it.
    Taxed if you spend it.
    Taxed if you save it.
    Taxed if you invest it.
    Taxed if you die.
    Taxed if you give it away.
    Taxed if you open a business.
    Taxed if you hire people.
    Taxed if you buy gas to go to work.
    Taxed if you buy food for our children

    We get taxed for EVERYTHING we do now days!

    When is it going to end?


    In the immortal words of Willy Wonka (as the Oompa Loompas are rowing them towards danger and peril)...

    Yes! The danger must be growing,
    for the rowers keep on rowing.
    And they're certainly not showing...
    any signs that they are´╗┐ slowing!

    I know... a little over the top but it came to mind.


    But seriously... if we keep taxing everything, and the government keeps spending all that PLUS Trillions more borrowed from China each year... how do we expect to survive as a country?

  • Maudine SLC, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 10:18 a.m.

    So, according to the author of this letter, the only reason to get married is for tax purposes.

    What a sad view of life, love, and marriage.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 22, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    @ 10CC: The author of the letter is the one who seems to think the only reason to get married is for tax purposes. If that is the case, what is preventing her from marrying some random guy? As I stated, there are many people who do this - and there are many tax accountants and divorce attorneys who can vouch for that. (Marriage and divorce are relatively cheap if you already know how you are going to divide the property and if you don't spring for the big wedding.)

    @ Curmudgeon: If your only reason for marrying is to reduce your tax burden, lack of opportunity is greatly reduced - the only requirement is that the person you are marrying is marrying you for the same reason. Judging by the number of letters exactly like this one that the DesNews has already published, it shouldn't be hard making that connection.

    As for disability, getting married would increase your tax burden. If the only reason for marriage is to decrease the tax burden, as this author suggests, why would someone with a disability want to get married?

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 10:04 a.m.

    2 Bits:

    I tend to agree with you on this topic, but how to address the common complaints that:

    A) The tax code is too complicated, ie, "we should be able to file our taxes on a post card"

    B) The government should not be in the business of sculpting behavior - leave that up to individuals and the free market. By incentivizing people to have more children, to create tomorrows tax payers, we feed right into the "Ponzi Scheme" mentality that has doomed Social Security and Medicare.

    I hear both these basic positions, a lot. How to respond to them?

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 10:04 a.m.

    I agree 100% with Ultra Bob. Weird huh...

    He said, "Our government(s) should be supported by a flat rate tax applied to every kind of personal income, without exception and without deductions". And I agree 100%.

    The irony is... this is basically what Mitt Romney and Herman Cain proposed (and I'm pretty sure Bob didn't support Romeny's tax plan).

    And Barack Obama campaigned on a PROMISE to make the tax code even LESS flat. His plan was to keep all the current deduction (something you didn't like) and Increase tax RATES on some Americans (that's not flat - something you didn't like). Now Bob... why can you support Obama and not Mitt IF you really want a FLAT tax rate for all citizens, and no deductions?? Obama's plan was the exact opposite!

    And I'm pretty sure you supported Obama.


    Do you really, REALLY support a totally flat tax and no deductions? Because you voted for the opposite IF you voted for Obama.

    I think our walk should match our talk. And our votes should match our rhetoric. You must have voted for Romney if you really wanted a flat tax and no deductions.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    Jan. 22, 2014 9:17 a.m.

    Our writer, presumably, wants to protect traditional marriage by eliminating the marriage deductions. This is known as "irony."

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 9:11 a.m.

    Ultra Bob,
    I agree that marriage is "a religious thing" (not a government thing). Not because marriage only benefits churches, but because it's a commandment (for those who believe the Bible). And it's a spiritual union (not a government one). And many believe God expects it as part of his plan that we "multiply and replenish the earth".


    How does marriage only benefit churches?

    I don't pay more or less tithing because I'm married. How does my church benefit if I'm married?

    I see how the government benefits if I'm married (my wife and I produce new little workers, and tax-payers, to keep society and the government operating).


    The theory that people who marry and produce the next generation of workers and tax payers should also be punished for doing that (by having to pay MORE taxes than they would if they were single)... just makes no sense to me.

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 8:58 a.m.

    The unfair tax rules that favor married people, are the least of the problems. The real problems of the tax system is the millions of tax scams that special groups have purchased from our government to avoid paying their fair share.

    Marriage is a religious thing, it's not the governments who benefits from married people, it's the churches.

    Our government(s) should be supported by a flat rate tax applied to every kind of personal income, without exception and without deductions.

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 8:53 a.m.


    You say: "If you are a heterosexual individual it is entirely your choice to be single." That is not universally true. There are many single heterosexuals who would love to be married, but cannot marry for one reason or another (lack of opportunity, disability, etc.). They do not choose to be single.

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    Changing the tax laws is never simple, and doing so with regard to marriage would only address a fraction of the reasons why same-sex couples want to marry.

  • 2 bits Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 8:39 a.m.

    It's an American tradition to use the tax code to encourage behavior the government WANTS us to engage in, and punish behavior that doesn't benefit the government (or society) in the long run.

    So they incentiveize getting married, having children, buying a house, having a mortgage, etc.

    I don't know why they DE-incentive saving and investing. That's a puzzler to me to this day. I guess it's fall-out from the class-warfare going on in Washington for generations (and the belief that anyone who invests or makes money is evil and must be punished, or at least have their evil investment profits redirected to somebody else).

    And that's ANY income bracket (not just the 1%). Check... any interest you earn on your savings is taxed/punished.

    I think we should have a tax credit/incentive to encourage us to save, rather than a punishment.

    I just don't understand how our tax code became what it is today.

    I know a lot of it comes from politicians constantly trying to use it as a tool of social engineering, but I really don't know how it became so anti-saving/investing.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 8:17 a.m.

    Clearly the solution is to put the tax burden on poor and middle class. The rate of increase of wealth on the top 40% is far too low. They only double their wealth every other year or so.

  • 10CC Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 22, 2014 7:55 a.m.


    That's an interesting way to deal with the issue, the citizens' way to level out the tax burden. It kind of makes a mockery of marriage laws, but I'm sure some enterprising person out there could put together a website that arranges low-cost marriages and automated divorce proceedings, just for the tax benefit of millions of Americans. You may not even have to meet your "1040 spouse'.

    And who can argue with people who are just trying to lower their tax burden? In our society we look up to people who legally avoid paying taxes, it's just the prudent thing to do, everyone should do it, too.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Jan. 22, 2014 12:37 a.m.

    If you are a heterosexual individual, how is whether or not you are married beyond your control? There is absolutely nothing in current law that prevents you from changing your status. As a matter of fact, there is absolutely nothing that prevents you from marrying on the last day of every even year and divorcing on the first day of every odd year and claiming a status as married for both of those years. As a matter of fact, many tax accountants know people who do exactly that.

    If you are a heterosexual individual it is entirely your choice to be single.