The tax season is over. If you do your taxes yourself, you know how incredibly stupid, complicated and convoluted the system is.
The Canadian tax code is far simpler than its US equivalent, but it still displays all the statist distortions.
A slew of breaks, rules, allowances, deductions, exemptions and conditions, all somehow suggesting special attention of our benevolent big brother.
Mineral exploration tax credit; Apprenticeship job creation tax credit, adoption expenses, home buyers’ amount, children’s fitness amount, tuition, education and textbook amounts and I could go on for pages. Most of these will not be applicable to most of us at any time, but when they do, they supposed to make us feel special. People tend to be more tolerant toward the system as a whole as long as they can believe that something special has been done for them, that their particular condition is given some consideration.
Nobody likes taxes, but collectively, it seems that we fall for this primitive manipulation. While libertarians keep challenging the legitimacy of taxation as a principle, the state keeps bribing the majority into acquiescence.
The tax codes are the result of complex processes. None of their provisions are designed specifically to deceive yet the result is one colossal deception. Part of the general deception of the state promising to all of us that the money it takes out of our right pocket will be less than what they put into the left one. That somehow we will all benefit from giving the state money and power, that we will be better of delegating our decisions to it.
The tax code is just a tool. Wouldn’t the world be a better place if we simplified it? If we got rid of its manipulative provisions? If we changed it to flat and simple? Wouldn’t a ‘naked’ tax be the best argument against the system? More convincing then the shrieking power tantrums shouting “taxation is theft?
The state is not just power. The state is also a fraud.
Anything that shrinks the state is a good idea. Flat tax, simple tax, transparent tax could all take us a step closer to freedom. Anything that exposes the fraud will gain support for freedom. On the top of it, any simplification of the system would have immediate economic benefits.
I would love to live in a world with no taxes. The question is not the goal, but the way to get there. The question is not whether the state is bad, evil, coercive or fraudulent, but how to convince enough people that it is all of the above.
The state will not disappear on its own. If it collapses, it will be replaced by tyranny, not freedom. The only way to freedom is through changing minds. Through slowly liberating them and the system with it.
The only way free society can be more than just a utopian dream is if we start seeing it as a direction.
As the journey of a thousand miles that begins with one step.