Letters to the Editor for Sept. 28, 2010

‘Fair Tax’ is a better way to compete

I recently heard ads that criticized a candidate for wanting to eliminate corporate income tax, and I looked into the proposed changes at FairTax.org.

The TV ads left out most of the story; individual income tax and Social Security tax would be completely eliminated and replaced by a consumption tax. The Fair Tax is revenue-neutral; it is progressive due to a “prebate” paid to citizens and legal residents. You are not taxed on anything that you earn or save, but only on what you consume.

Creating jobs and investing in production will not be taxed. Exports will be less expensive and more competitive, and imports will be taxed at the retail price. The Fair Tax is the best approach that I have seen for helping the U.S. compete in world markets and create jobs at home.

We, the consumers, already pay for corporate income taxes in the form of higher prices for all goods that we buy, spending our income that has already been taxed and Social Security deducted as well. Our employers paid matching Social Security and Medicare payments. Even those who receive Social Security payments are taxed again.

Our tax code is so complicated that even the current Secretary of the Treasury said that he couldn’t figure out his personal taxes. The tax code also penalizes companies that bring profits home from abroad, raises costs of our exports, and effectively subsidizes sending jobs overseas.

In my career as an engineer, I have often seen the effects of decisions made to avoid taxes. Companies outsource work offshore rather than invest locally. Equipment is leased, not bought, to avoid a capital outlay. Manufacturing partners are sought in countries that encourage investment. Our current tax system only contributes to the loss of jobs in the U.S.

The Fair Tax will help to level the playing field and allow us to export more and produce more domestically. The Fair Tax proposal will reduce the cost of our exports, and allow overseas profits to come home and be invested without a penalty. This will bring job growth and investment back to the US.

It encourages saving and investing, because you are not taxed until you consume. Because of competition, prices will drop because current prices reflect the income taxes at all levels of production. The change will eliminate the annual ordeal of filing tax returns. The effort now devoted to sheltering income from tax can be redirected to investing and creating income. The effort devoted to muddling through 65,000 pages of tax code will be better used to grow the economy.

The Fair Tax will simplify our lives and increase domestic investment. It will take the brakes off our economy, and allow small businesses to invest locally without a tax penalty. It is revenue-neutral, and deliberately progressive. It will remove loopholes that have been carved out by lobbyists and politicians over the years. No wonder some of those in government oppose it and revile it. We need a Fair Tax!

Donald Sutton, Camas

Rivers listens to constituents

Ann Rivers would be an outstanding state representative for the 18th district.

She is a business owner who opposed tax increases. Rivers has a good understanding of the key issues facing our state. She believes that state government should live within its means. Rivers listens to constituents and is not afraid to reach across party lines to work on key issues.

As a member of the Camas City Council, I look forward to working with Ann Rivers in Olympia.

Steve Hogan, Camas

Please review our community guidelines