letters | tax reform on the table

Poor could bear brunt of proposed changes

I enjoy John E. Sununu’s metaphor for the nerve to tackle tax reform — skiing down Tuckerman Ravine (“Tax reform: Ski it if you dare,” Op-ed, March 3). I also applaud Representative David Camp for putting specific proposals on the table. As an experienced tax preparer, I support simplicity. However, Camp proposes to add even more phase-outs and limits to tax savings, the most complex elements of the tax code. If one accepts that reductions in benefits are the same as a tax, then his proposal is worrisome.

Poor people pay much higher marginal rates than the rich once benefit caps and phase-outs are considered. Caps and phase-outs create nearly insurmountable barriers to upward mobility. I am a so-called compassionate conservative, but I do not want to see the social safety net frayed.


I’d like to see personal exemptions and the standard deduction replaced with $4,368 of food stamps for each citizen. In the 10 percent tax bracket, that’s equivalent to a $43,680 deduction, and in the 40 percent bracket, a $10,920 deduction.

A so-called citizens’ dividend, combined with a flat tax, would be progressive, simple to administer, reward work, and protect the unlucky. Now that’s a pro-growth tax code.

William E. Carlson


Loading comments...
Real journalists. Real journalism. Subscribe to The Boston Globe today.
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to Globe.com for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com