Rushville Republican

Columns

April 24, 2013

Messer: Broken tax code hurts families and job creators

RUSHVILLE — Citizens all across our country recently participated in a 100-year-old American tradition: paying taxes. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the modern income tax.

In 1913, instructions for the 1040 form were just one page. Today, instructions are 189 pages, along with dozens of additional forms. The tax code itself is a whopping 3.9 million words long. Most taxpayers would agree this is not a change for the better.  

Simply put, our tax system has become a nightmare. It is too complex, too costly and riddled with too many special interest loopholes.

Over 90 percent of American households and small businesses use a tax preparer or tax software to help them prepare and file their taxes. When it is all said and done, Americans spend over $160 billion and about 6 billion hours a year trying to comply with the tax code.

Without question, our current tax code is hurting our country. In a time of record deficits, experts estimate that the complexity of our tax code contributes to an underpayment of $400 billion annually in taxes rightfully owed. All the while, families and business owners spend hundreds of billions of dollars more each year for record keeping and accounting services needed to comply with thousands of new regulations.

Our families and small businesses deserve a tax code that is simple and fair and free of loopholes. We need a tax code that will not allow some to game the system while others are left footing the bill. Instead, they should be able to sit down and do their own taxes, and they shouldn’t have to wonder if their neighbor has a better accountant and is getting a better deal.

But there is another reason for cleaning up our broken tax code—strengthening our economy. Currently, America has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world and the cost of complying with our tax code gives other countries a competitive advantage in attracting jobs. We need a tax system that encourages businesses, both small and large, to invest, hire and create jobs right here in America.

Not only is the tax code too complex but our taxes are too high. The Tax Foundation estimates that every dollar each American worker earns this year from Jan. 1 to April 18 will go toward paying their tax bills. In other words, the first three and a half months that you work this year will go toward paying for government.

That’s not fair, and we must do better. By making the tax code simpler and fairer, we can lower tax rates so families can save more, so employers can hire and invest more, and so that there are more jobs and higher wages for workers.

 

1
Text Only
Columns
  • We are still the United States It seems to me that America has in the past had an idea of destiny, one that started at Concord and continues to today. A great experiment was begun with the shot heard around the world. It continued on through the remainder of the Revolution and spa

    April 22, 2014

  • Mail Tales: Of postcards and wishing where you were This week we're going to explore the exciting world of Deltiology. I know that "Deltiology" sounds vaguely scientific, which means some of you are probably worrying that this is another one of my sneaky attempts to foist upon you a poorly researched,

    April 22, 2014

  • An important election this year I wonder if anyone has to be reminded that we're in another election year. The current election season is often referred to as an "off-year" election because it's not a year in which we vote for a president. This will be, nevertheless, one of the mos

    April 22, 2014

  • In a perpetual comma I misplace a lot of things: keys wallet gloves the dog's leash. Recently I misplaced something that may not seem very important unless you read that last sentence carefully. Then you will realize that believe it or not I can't find my comma. Yes it's

    April 22, 2014

  • Crate art Paper labels from 1880-1930, collectively referred to as "Crate Art", are a unique form of American Folk Art. Originally designed to be glued to the ends of wooden crates to identify produce during shipping, the graphically attractive labels are stil

    April 22, 2014

  • This column will self-destruct in 5 seconds I've become completely infatuated over the past few weeks with a gift I received a few Christmases ago. It was a completely unexpected gift from one of my big brothers: a set of "Mission: Impossible" DVDs. No, not home videos of me begging my kids to

    April 15, 2014

  • Don't sweat the small things There are a few things in life that really get under my skin, one of which is complaining. Yes, I complain sometimes, but it doesn't last too long at all before I put myself in check. There was a story this week that really touched my heart and like

    April 15, 2014

  • The timeless beauty of wicker No matter what the day may bring, I can leave it all behind when I take my evening walk. Strolling through our historic neighborhood on Indy's south side is a multifaceted treat. It is good for my heart, it erases the cares of the day and it affords

    April 15, 2014

  • Self deposit box I love where I bank. It's a branch inside of a big supermarket. I can make a modest withdrawal and then go and blow every last penny in the cookie aisle. The tellers at the window appreciate me. They know about my obsession with round numbers and und

    April 15, 2014

  • Change can be done here In previous columns I've suggested that one of the factors holding this community back is the relatively poor image many of us have of our town. The point, as some may recall, was made by several people who live in other communities who said Rushvill

    April 15, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.