Behind Tax Policy Controversies

Behind Tax Policy Controversies

Social, Legal and Economic Foundations

By Steven Sheffrin

Anthem Critical Introductions

This book provides a short, critical introduction to controversies in tax policy. It emphasizes the many diverse underlying factors that drive tax policy debates and sheds light on traditional and newly emerging issues of tax policy.

Paperback, 250 Pages

ISBN:9781839984945

April 2023

£18.95, $27.95

  • About This Book
  • Reviews
  • Author Information
  • Series
  • Table of Contents
  • Links
  • Podcasts

About This Book

This book is designed to be a short, critical introduction to the controversies in tax policy. The main thesis of the book is that there is a deeper substructure to debates about tax policy that underlie many of the controversies. By understanding the nature of this substructure one can place the debates about tax policy into a broader perspective. The chapters in the book elucidate this underlying architecture, drawing on ideas from economics, law, philosophy, psychology, and political science.

Economic principles shape some of the foundations for the debates, particularly with regard to the question of whether income taxes should be structured with a broad base and low rates, and whether the appropriate base of taxation should be consumption or income. Legal and administrative issues provide another foundation for tax policy, as certain structural features of the tax system—the separate existence of corporations and the realization principle for income—constrain the set of feasible tax policies. To understand tax fairness, one must delve into philosophy and psychology. A key debate is whether we view taxation just through a purely distributional lens (who gets what) or must we think about notions of process and deservingness to make sense of debates on tax fairness.

The book uses these tools to shed light on these issues as well as on the most current debates. These include the appropriate goals for tax reform, the most judicious way to tax multinational corporations, our ability to tax the very wealthy, and whether the tax system has a racial subtext. 

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Author Information

Steven M. Sheffrin is a professor of economics and affiliated professor of law at Tulane University.

Series

Anthem Critical Introductions

Table of Contents

What Are Tax Policy Controversies About?; Is Broad Base, Low Rates the Right Policy for Income Taxation?; Should We Tax Income or Consumption?; How Should We Tax Multinational Corporations?; Two Competing Perspectives on Tax Fairness; Are Tax Systems Racially Biased?; How Can We Tax the Very Wealthy?; What is Missing From the Current Debates?.

Links

No Podcasts for this title.

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