Taxation honesty

EDITOR, The Tribune.

We live in a funny country. We are so immune to irony that even our news reporters don’t call it out when a man accused by the Department of Customs of underpaying duties can appear in the newspaper calling for more consequences for fiscal irresponsibility among civil servants and elected officials. That the failure to pay one’s taxes is one of the more common issues impeding fiscal performance seems not to occur to many of us.

Of course, the issue that Robert Myers and his fellow self-styled “governance reformers” always seem to skirt, avoid or miss is that, in a country that collects a mere 18 percent of GDP in revenues annually (the world average is upward of 30 percent, even in such socialist beacons as Thatcherite Britain and Reagan’s USA), “fiscal woes” are inevitable if you expect normal outcomes in terms of national development. To blame all of our fiscal pressures on supposed wastage or theft is therefore either dishonest or ignorant (not to mention hypocritical, in this case!).

Until the highest income groups begin contributing their fair share to the national treasury (via taxes on personal and corporate income), we will always have unnecessary difficulty running this country in line with the legitimate expectations of its people. And we will continue having one of the most unequal societies in the region. Mr Myers’ ‘governance reformers’ would do well to concentrate their minds on finding solutions to that. They won’t.

ANDREW ALLEN

Nassau,

July 6, 2018.

Comments

DWW says...

Mr. Allen needs to sharpen his pencil. where does his 18% come from? seems like that would be much higher. In comparing us to USA keep in mind that 10% of GDP goes towards the military. removing this factor shows the USA tas taxes to run the country equivalent to 20% which is on par with the Bahamas no? and in the US you can get your mail delivered. we can't even get mail in the Bahamas. answer me that please.

Posted 12 July 2018, 8:16 a.m. Suggest removal

DWW says...

And since we are on teh subject. equating a $10,000 tax dodge to a $3,000,000 bogus government contract is a bit of a stretch. one is tax avoidance, the other i outright theft from gov't. All them MPs is be dodging the taxman. no property tax, no BEC bill, free water, need i go on? Mr. Allen shoudl go sit small and rethink what he just wrote.

Posted 12 July 2018, 8:25 a.m. Suggest removal

joeblow says...

Personal income tax is not the solution and is unnecessary, especially in this country.

There are currently seven US states that do not pay income tax on wages! The key is to simply spend less than you make while finding industrious ways to make more!

Posted 12 July 2018, 9:23 a.m. Suggest removal

Porcupine says...

You mean state income taxes, not federal income taxes.
Everyone there pays that, except the rich.

Posted 15 July 2018, 3:37 p.m. Suggest removal

Well_mudda_take_sic says...

I am firmly of the view that all property throughout the Bahamas owned by Bahamians that was designated/zoned as residential at the time it was acquired by the current owner should be exempt from real property tax up to a maximum of three (3) acres, no matter where the property is located and no matter whether or not it is developed or owner occupied, . All other property should be subject to real property tax. Such a policy is vital given that we are a small nation with a very limited amount of land available for the Bahamian people.

Posted 16 July 2018, 1:37 p.m. Suggest removal

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