Taxing Ourselves: A Citizen's Guide to the Great Debate over Tax Reform

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9780262193757: Taxing Ourselves: A Citizen's Guide to the Great Debate over Tax Reform
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Who should pay taxes, how should they be collected, and how do they affect the economy? Should the income tax be tinkered with, replaced with a flat tax, or left alone? Cutting through the academic jargon and self-serving Washington-speak, Joel Slemrod and Jon Bakija bring together all of the data, analytical insight, and related material bearing on tax reform to explore the fundamental questions and choices inherent in tax policy making.
Taxing Ourselves begins with a concise overview of the U.S. tax system as it exists today, offering historical and international perspectives on taxation. It examines the criteria that should serve as guides for tax policy - fairness, the promotion of economic prosperity, and simplicity - and explores the controversies and difficulties related to each one. Crucial questions about how the burden of our tax system is actually distributed and the economic effects of taxation are addressed.
Slemrod and Bakija review the key elements of fundamental tax reform proposals, including a single rate, a clean base, and a consumption base. Finally they take a detailed look at the major alternatives for tax reform, providing concise guidelines that will make clear the choices involved in tax policy.

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About the Author:

Joel Slemrod is Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy, Professor of Economics, and Director of the Office of Tax Policy Research at the University of Michigan. Jon Bakija is a graduate student in economics, also at the University of Michigan.

Review:

"Cutting through the academic jargon, the authors ...explore the fundamental questions and choices inherent in tax policymaking."
Boston Sunday Globe
Praise for the first edition

"Taxing Ourselves is one of the best books on taxation I have ever read."
Bruce Bartlett, Wall Street Journal

"For anybody interested in tax reform, yet confused by political polemic, Taxing Ourselves is an invaluable guide to the debate."
The Economist

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Slemrod, Joel; Bakija, Jon
Published by The M.I.T. Press, Boston, Ma (1996)
ISBN 10: 0262193752 ISBN 13: 9780262193757
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