Friday, February 03, 2006


Is Bastiat for Tariffs?

I recieved a disturbing email today from someone at the Mises Institute. It included quotes from Frederic Bastiat, outlining his approval of tariffs to fund government services. For details, please see my post on the SPELBINDER.

In a word, yes. Bastiat is "for" tariffs.

The biggest problems (in my opinion) with the ones he suggests are the market distortions created by taxing different goods at different rates.

Bastiat's no anarchist: he has to support some form of taxation. So, what kind is best?

When I'm not living in an anarcho-Capitalist dream world, I suggest a (infinitessimally small) tax on consumed income. Other ideas?
If there must be taxation, what about court fees? Obviously that prices out some court assistance to the poor, but that is the problem for all taxation.

Consumed income actually seems to be a pretty good one.

What about George Smith's land tax?
Lotteries, man... lotteries.

Just kidding. I think we should just have a Chris tax, you know, simply tax very heavily everyone named Chris. Most of the people I know named Chris are fully capable of supporting the rest of us non-Chris people.

I'm very close to taking this idea on my campaign for President in 2008. Let me know if I should make any adjustments.
Just did a search of blogger blogs for "fair tax" and came across a real nugget of joy...
Bortz is all over the fair tax stuff right now, has a new book out about it, etc. I listen to him until he starts bashing imigrants and getting super hawkinsh, then I'm gone.

Court fees, again! The only justifiable source of LEGAL, let's not say government, income. There is no coercive confiscation of wealth, there is no opportunity for government expansion, and assuming the courts are independant, there is free competition among various courts. People of similar creeds could appeal to specialized courts, and those of differing creeds could take their cases to an agreed upon third party. Really, setting creed-specific laws aside, there are only two laws: Do all you have agreed to do. and, Do not encroach on other persons or their property.

Can anyone think of a law that does not fit into a sub-category of these two?
I think there might very well be enough individuals named Chris in the United States to make that feasible. However, you know as soon as they put that in to place, they will expand it to all the variations of Chris - like Christopher, Christine, Kris, Christian, Christiana and so on. We have to expect them to continue to expand the base.
Mises Institute on Fair Tax:
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