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The Case For A Border Adjustable Tax System

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Stephen Moore
Stephen Moore is an American economic writer and policy analyst. He is a distinguished visiting fellow at The Heritage Foundation and author of "Who's the Fairest of Them All?" He founded and served as president of the Club for Growth from 1999 to 2004. Moore is a former member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board.
  • Phil_will1

    What Mr. Moore is advocating is a border adjustable income tax – something that the WTO has already ruled to be impermissable. It is fairly certain that the WTO will levy heavy fines and penalties against any country attempting such a discriminatory scheme.

    The operative word here is “discriminatory”. Unlike this proposal, the FairTax would transfer our entire federal tax burden into a border adjustable form in a manner that could easily be defended to both our trading partners and the WTO. For example, we could point out that we are not discriminating against foreign produced goods; rather, we are taxing them the exact same way that we tax our own goods.

    It would appear that the Trump administration is trying to achieve some of the economic benefits of the FairTax without actually passing the FairTax. I say “some of” because they are only reducing the corporate tax rate to 15%, which is nowhere near as good as eliminating the corporate income tax entirely.

  • Robert E. Roark

    I read Mr. Moore’s advocacy of a border adjustable income tax. I wondered as I read how Mr. Moore could be so positive about a consumption tax on trade goods and yet not apply these benefits to our income tax system. Then I saw the post by Phil_will1 and agree completely with his conclusion. So I write to simply say “Amen” to his comment and urge Mr. Moore to see these benefits and seek to promote them to the incoming administration.