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Tyler Cowen on the VAT

Tyler Cowen seems sympathetic to the idea of imposing a national sales tax (VAT) in his post Is there a case for a VAT? But as I noted in Say No To Tax Reform,

Calls for tax reform of a distraction (no offense, my naive, youthful advocacy of a national sales tax). For good material on this see: Rockwell, The Tax Reform Racket; Rockwell, Diversions; Rothbard, The Consumption Tax: A Critique; and The Fair Tax Fraud and Flat Tax Folly by Laurence Vance. In Power and Market, Rothbard lays out a taxonomy of the methods utilized by the state to confiscate private property and how each tax uniquely distorts the free market.

As Rockwell writes in The Tax Reform Racket:“

Is there a need to reform taxes? Most certainly. Always and everywhere. You can always make a strong case against all forms of taxation and all tax codes and all mechanisms by which a privileged elite attempts to extract wealth from the population. And this is always the first step in any tax reform: get the public seething about the tax code, and do it by way of preparation for step two, which is the proposed replacement system.

Of course, this is the stage at which you need to hold onto your wallet.

Further selected quotes in Say No To Tax Reform.

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