As tax documents fill our mailboxes in the U.S., we explore the individual tax regimes around the world
Politicians for centuries have used taxation as a primary incentive to garner greater public influence. But the current surge in populism, particularly across Europe, revives age-old grievances from taxpayers. Since the onset of the financial crisis, European politicians, particularly in countries facing severe stress, have been forced to pursue fiscal consolidation efforts through a combination of higher taxes and lower spending, referred to as “austerity”.
The IRS has estimated that only 84% of taxes owed are paid every year; the revenue shortfall to the U.S. government is about $400 billion annually, or almost 3% of gross domestic product. With yearly deficits skyrocketing to more than $1 trillion, some recovery of back taxes would be very much welcome. For those who owe, it will be a bad day when the IRS arrives on the doorstep. But it will be a good day for the rest of us.
This article highlights how…
- Throughout history, taxes have been the subject of popular discontent
- High tax burdens have drawn fire in several European countries
- In the U.S., good economic growth did not offset the loss of tax revenue from the 2017 tax act
- The IRS deserves more resources and support