Fair Tax Nation

Replace All Federal Taxes on Income with the Fair Tax Act , HR 25

I Could Use Some Open Discussion From Valuable Supporters Of FairTax

I have read the FairTax books and studied them. I have read the Fair Tax Act of 2009. I feel comfortable answering questions in my personal life and on Twitter.

If the idea of "progressive" starts and ends with the prebate then that answers my concern. It doesn't satisfy the potential misconception for others that have never read the books or had FairTax explained to them. A sales tax on consumer goods and services or the exemption of tax (prebate) may be described as having progressive effects as it increases a tax burden on high end consumption or decreases a tax burden on low end consumption respectively. This should be explained to a greater extent, or enlighten me by telling me where I missed the explanation.

If you are politically motivated as I am and are conservative to boot, just the word "progressive" has a negative connotation. What we have now is progressive taxation, and I don't need to explain how bad that is. Progressive can have a negative impact if it refers to a specific political ideology, or if it refers to taxation. One word can make or break a deal, and we need every positive possible.

The opening line in explanation of the FairTax on the website states :

“including a progressive national retail sales tax”

This can be very misleading when it actually is a fixed 23% sales tax on goods and services, so the mention of progressive seems out of place.

With Obama-nomics and his unprecedented spending, how solid is the 23% when we are on the hook for a $24 trillion deficit? I have a Congressman who shows an interest, but I will not push if I cannot be convinced there is no ambiguity in the legislation or promotional media.

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Maybe you have a point, maybe you don't.

Personally, I have had a lot better success speaking with moderate to conservative democrats using the term 'progressive'. It gives them a little cover to support it. In fact, it was a good tool at my disposal that I used to defuse a liberal's only position against FairTax at CPAC last year. She is a regular commentator on MSNBC named AnnaMariaCox running around with a video camera trying to make everyone look dumb. She quickly left us alone.

Actually, FairTaxNation is designed to promote FairTax as it is currently written, not to work to some how tweak it. We tend to leave that to the brains down in Houston. Over the past few years I Have noticed that a lot of online effort is wasted time debating and rehashing the same things that was rehashed years ago. Instead, I hope that we at FTN can contribute to promoting the idea as a whole out in our communities and in Washington, DC.

I think that you may have a point and that maybe you should take this suggestion to the good folks over at FairTax.org. They are the ones who choose the terminology and they may wish take a look at your point of view.
Point well taken Jim, it is not a hill to die for.
I have to disagree with your statement that there is nothing progressive about the FairTax, I believe Chiefcook's post clearly demonstrates how it is; you seem to be hung up and bogged down on the the word "progressive". However, I'll not split hairs with you either and I don't intend to belittle your point.

I do agree with you about just dropping the "progressive" tag altogether. There has been some discussion here lately about referring to the FairTax as a "flat tax on consumption". I'm in favor of this idea because it might appeal to the many "flat taxers" out there. It could be billed as "a flat tax that costs you nothing and pays you back". Of course if the term "progressive" has to be used for whatever reason, then why don't we coin a new phrase - a "progressive flat tax".

My 3 cents
I don't wish anything I contribute to be devisive, only sharing the talking points that I have been faced with. FairTax is still the best thing out there with the expert study to back it up.
I would like to offer this possible clarification from my time as a FairTax regional coordinator and from the perspective of a technical writer and trainer with 20+ years' experience. People who self-identify politically as "progressive" often complain that the FairTax is not progressive, by which they mean that the wealthy don't pay enough. In order to have any chance at all of getting Democratic support, we either have to show them that it is indeed progressive (e.g. the weathy pay more because they buy more) or we have to re-educate them about what it really means for a tax to be progressive. I would argue that in order to persuade others to join us, we must use their language. As a technical trainer, my job may be to teach a certain procedure such as "push the blue button." If certain people think the blue button is green (for whatever reason), I change my tactic to instruct them to push the green button. I don't waste my time trying to convince them that the button is actually blue. If Dems and other FairTax opponents want something called "progressive" then we label the FairTax as such, knowing that it actually does fit their needs but they can't see it because they can't get past the labels. In general, we don't have to educate people in the Republican or other conservative camps, so using "progressive" in the description does not hurt our cause with them. Education is required on all fronts, but the uphill battle is with the Dems so we must use their language to get their support. After we get their support, we can argue about proper terminology. After they're accustomed to pushing the "green" button and enjoying the results, we can then say "by the way, that's really blue." After we pass the FairTax, we can educate people as to what "progressive" really means.
Not that it really matters that much, but I felt pretty confident in my background of 37 years in training and instructive writing, but it's today and going forward that really matters. What resonates with me especially during the grass roots "tea party" that has been so prevalent since April is "say what you mean, and mean what you say", "tell us the truth!", and "be transparent". There is no reason to offer anyone anything less, especially when a resolution to a label game can so easily be avoided by honest explanation.

Quite frankly Mr. Bradley I've had a belly full of 'OVERSEAS CONTENGENCY OPERATION" in lieu of the "WAR ON TERROR" that it really is. Softpedalling "GLOBAL WARMING" by referring to it as "CLIMATE CHANGE" in order to glean Americans of their hard earned money by more nefarious political means. Let's not forget the latest "CONSUMER OPTION" to sugar coat the much maligned "GOVERNMENT OPTION" as part of Healthcare Reform.

I want to see FairTax replace the current method of taxation which I have been an activist against since the early 80's, and I will spare everyone with my horror stories. I want to see FairTax embraced by all who support it, but I will only represent it one way to any party or ideology, and that's straight up and let the chips fall where they may.

That's just who I am!
I love the idea of calling it a fixed tax. (The name Flat tax is already taken and no where near as good a program as Fairtax.) But no matter what it is called it will be demonized by those who don't want to loose control of Favors in Government. Fairtax is a proposal that one should not spend much time trying to make it better,(it already has a name and lots (years) of great research) but instead learn how to express it's benefits so we can counter the negatives. Continued push to educate is the only hope for Fairtax. Doug Hoffman's loss in the 23rd district of NY is not a good sign for the public being informed enough about Fairtax or that less government creates more jobs than more government. The two items I run into the most as negatives, ( I have addressed these in the past) are the inclusive and exclusive being deceptive and the argument that 23% will increase or is not enough.
David,

Was Hoffman pushing the FairTax during his campaign? If so, I was not aware of it.
One thing about this post that has impressed me, is all the input I've received. Even if nothing more comes of it, it has encouraged discussion and as far as I am concerned strengthened the FairTax understanding.

David, your point is well taken about "Fixed" in lieu of "Flat". My concern is any change in wording at this point. It would be like a football coach changing his game plan in the fourth quarter with a ten-point lead.

The FairTax books are great! They are humorous, well written, and almost flawlessly instructive by responding to critics. Someone can enlighten me with facts on this, but in neither book is there an explanation of the consumer sales tax (nor national retail sales tax as it is also defined) that mentions anything about progressive. The only reference to progressive is relative to our current method of taxation mentioned infrequently in both books.

With that said, it kind of puts me back at square one only with a different way to put it. There are individuals that express an interest in FairTax. Some that are interested don't have time and/or the desire to read the books. They rely on the web site at FairTax.org, or questions to proponents of the FairTax. I have fielded questions and listened to comments relative to the mention of the simple statement on the web site "a progressive national retail sales tax". Since I have brought this topic up I have come away with multiple interpretations of the meaning, and that is not acceptable. We need a pat answer. An answer that indicates we are all on the same page at FairTax and FairTaxNation explaining how the national retail sales tax is progressive?
Ron,

Did you read the message posted by Ken Hoagland? As you know, Ken is the national spokesperson for AFFT. I would suggest that we have heard from Houston and we have been provided the "pat" answer.
Yes Sean, I have read every response from everyone on this post. It would have been a bit irresponsible of me not to since I initiated the post. I understood everything Ken said before I responded in my last post, and you are certainly entitled to have construed that Ken's response gave us all the pat answer I was seeking.
Ron,

I'm really not trying to be antagonistic here. My last reply was simply suggesting Ken Hoagland's response represented an "official" reply from AFFT and should have provided you with that pat answer you're looking for.

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