The Big Picture

I’ve always been a “big picture” kinda guy. I would rather read a general overview of history than a detailed analysis of the Battle of the Bulge. I would prefer reading a concise, insightful summary of human nature rather than the most in-depth study of child development. I would prefer watching a Discovery Channel program on The Big Bang than one on the solar system. For me, the Big Picture is just more fun to think about than the little stuff. Continue reading

Flat Tax–Not so fast

This morning, Presidential candidate, Dr. Ben Carson, defended his proposal for a flat-rate income tax. This is certainly a move in the right direction and far better than the current byzantine personal income tax code. I would, however, much prefer replacing the current income tax with a national sales tax. For two reasons. One, it makes everyone a taxpayer. Right now, only about 50% of us pay any income taxes, while the rest of us skate. Under a national sales tax, even a kid who buys a pack of gum at a convenience store is a taxpayer. True, a sales tax is regressive. We could remedy that by exempting food and clothing. Secondly, the income tax return itself is a perverse invasion of privacy. It reveals nearly everything about us to the government—our names, the names of our spouses and children, where we live, what we do for a living, our investments, the real estate we own, where our kids go to school and day-care, how much and to whom we donate to charity, and on and on. Continue reading