The question of “fairness” looms large in the minds of the Democrats. “Fair share” is a favorite mantra, along with “equality” and “social justice.” A recent letter (Jan. 12) highlights this issue. Is a graduated tax a “fair” tax? Supporters say “yes, of course; those who have more should pay more.”

But why? Is there a justification for this attitude? Do the rich take more from society than the poor? In my opinion, the rich take less from society than do the poor. They live in communities with security systems and private guards; thus a smaller demand on the police. Their houses all have smoke- and carbon monoxide-detectors; thus less demand on firefighters. They send their children to private schools; thus less demand on the educational system. And they pay more for these public services through their higher taxes.

What about the “fairness” of the graduated income tax? Is it “fair” a single taxpayer should subsidize a family claiming six exemptions because they chose to have several children?

In my opinion, “regressive” flat taxes are actually “fair” taxes. Besides their impact at reducing that bloated bureaucracy of the IRS, everyone pays something, which means everyone has a responsibility to the country and a stake in its government.


Michael Goldman,


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