Riposte From Down Under
Published on: February 3, 2010
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  • One area where I would like to see more cross border cooperation is in international tax enforcement. Free trade in a lopsided world causes tremendous inequities in the developed economies and hurts the living standards to ordinary workers.

    The only fair and efficient way to address this problem — assuming we want to keep the advantages of free trade — is with a graduated consumption tax (think IRAs with no limit on annual contributions and no penalties for early withdrawals.

    Unfortunately to adminsister such a tax system means an end to unregistered bank and brokerage accounts around the world, which would require the close cooperation of all our major allies in Europe and Asia.

    Keep in mind however that these countries have the same interest we do in collecting their taxes and protecting their citizens’ standards of living.

    Also, transparency in the international banking system would make it much harder for international criminal cartels and terrorist organizations to operate.

    Where the benefits are clear and widespread, international cooperation has a chance I think. In our new global economy we need an international banking system to match.

    Think of the way regional and state banks gave way to national ones during the 19th and 20th centuries as national economies grew. They were all part of one organic development.

  • Tom Grey

    Here’s a different idea for reducing global warming / CO2 emissions.
    Have all gov’ts agree to a percentage of their gov’t tax revenue be generated by a net tax on CO2 emissions.

    I actually don’t know how much the US gas tax contributes to the Federal Budget (maybe 1%?), but it could be targeted at 1% more, each year — with a tax rebate given first, and then the tax slowly added (every Sat?) so Sun sees a 1 cent a gallon higher price until the Fed. gov’t collects 1% more of its revenue thru gas taxes.

    And percentage of revenue is ‘fair’ to all countries — developed and non-developed all have taxes.

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