Welcome to Rye Country Day's Economic Blog. Here you will find perspectives by students taking Economics at Rye Country Day School. It is meant to be a forum where students can openly express their ideas and take positions on relevant economic issues. I urge everyone to participate in presenting their own ideas in an open manner so that we can all learn from each other. Regardless of whether you are currently taking Economics, everyone is invited and encouraged to comment on articles and get involved. Feel free to e-mail me, Alex Osborne at alexander_osborne@rcds.rye.ny.us , with comments or suggestions.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Featured Entry - Rethinking Taxes

Taxes, ugh. Every year people are forced to give away their hard-earned money to the government so that politicians can decide where the money can be most beneficial to society. American citizens are losing their incentive to work since a huge amount of their paychecks are being seized by the government. Although taxes serve a positive purpose to society, they also destroy the moral and purchasing power of the American people. Seeking a compromise between the American people’s incetive to work and the government’s need to improve the nation’s problems, I had the idea that Americans could receive a tax reduction if they accomplished a certain number of community service hours. At each tax bracket or level, a citizen must do a certain amount of hours of community service to get a tax deduction on their taxes. In considering political fiscal policy, democrats would welcome this idea because it is concerned about helping the little guy and improving society while republicans would like the idea because of the tax breaks. All the while, the American people will be enthusiastic about the idea because they can see a direct effect of their tax payments (community service) and they will have more money to spend on goods. The American economy will boom because of the increase in consumer demand because of the rise in purchasing power. Even though one may be against giving the government this much power in society, I would say it also lessens the power of the government by giving it a smaller payroll to spend recklessly Tax reductions from community service hours allows people to help their country without giving away their salary. With this system, people have a choice. In addition, community service work now creates two incentives, self-satisfaction and additional capital. The American people are using the resource of time more efficiently than they used the resource of money when paying taxes. With the tax reductions through social actions, people choose how to allocate their resources more efficiently.

-Sam Cross


Riddhima said...

But Sam, don't you think taxes also create jobs? Not that the community service idea isn't great...But tax money eventually flows into the citizens' pockets anyways. For instance some of our tax dollars is used to pay the guy who helps clean I-95 daily. So really, taxes bring on the multiplier effect and help the economy as well as society. But ofcourse, reducing taxes is not an all around bad idea.

philip said...

Ah, another attack on taxes, I love it. First of all, though I like the 'community service' aspect, let me point a few things out that would be flawed with that plan.

1. Who says what community service is, and who will check on that? If its simply a form people have to fill out saying that they did some good deeds... well then I hate to tell you, but people will fill it out no matter what. If its something more in-depth, then the government will need to hire people to check up on these 'community service' projects. Those people will need to be paid and where will their salaries come from? Taxes?

2. If implemented, this would be another scheme that would benifit the upper class to an absurd degree. The rich have, on the whole, far more time to spend doing 'community service' or anything else than the middle class or the poor.

Sam, I agree with you in principal, I think it would be fantastic if people did more for their country in the way of community service. We would be a much better and stronger country if that happened, but the idea of it being run or controlled by the government would cost so much money that taxes would have to be raised before they are lowered.

Americans need to realize that their tax dollars are necessary and that, in relation to other developed countries, our individual income tax rates are on the lower side of average. I could give you any number of reasons why taxes should be raised rather than lowered, but now is not the time or the place.