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Tax Reform Books - A Bibliography

The massive IRS system and tax reform have been topics of discussion each election cycle. Here is a brief bibliography of various books addressing income taxes.

Tax Trivia (or not-so-Trivial): It takes the average worker until mid April to earn enough money to pay their taxes. After "Tax Freedom Day" the money you work for actually belongs to you. Many, including the Tax Foundation, a nonpartisan, nonprofit policy research group, advocate tax simplification. These books represent varied views on tax reform.

Taxing Ourselves : A Citizen's Guide to the Debate over Taxes, by Joel Slemrod & Jon Bakija
For many people the current tax system is overwhelming and incomprehensible. We are inundated with propaganda and pieces of information for all sides of the tax reform debate. Slemrod and Bakija do the nearly impossible--They present the current tax system in language that non-accountants can understand. They also present various tax reform plans with even handedness.

Death by a Thousand Cuts : The Fight over Taxing Inherited Wealth, by Michael J. Graetz & Ian Shapiro
This is less a book on the how-tos of inheritance tax, than the working of politics. Graetz and Shapiro are upfront in their support of the "death tax." They present an entertaining tale of how briefly the inheritance tax will be suspended in 2010.

Crisis in Tax Administration, by Henry J. Aaron & Joel Slemrod (Editors)
The chapters in this volume evaluate the capacity of authorities to enforce the tax laws in a modern, global economy and examine the implications of failing to do so. Specific aspects of tax law, including tax shelters, issues relating to small businesses, tax software, role of tax preparers, and the objectives of tax simplification are examined in detail.

Flat Tax Revolution : Using a Postcard to Abolish the IRS, by Steve Forbes
A book from the man who was bold enough to bring tax reform to presidential debate and host Saturday Night Live. Forbes spells out his vision of a Flat Tax plan. He explains how the benefits would be shared and improve the American economy. Included is a discussion of tax credits for low income families. This book is written specifically for those unfamiliar with tax jargon.

The Fair Tax Book, by Neal Boortz & John Linder
This book argues for a simple consumption tax, rather than the current matrix of tax codes. Boortz (a Libertarian talk show host) and Linder (R-Congressman) argue that a consumption tax will enable the repeal of the income tax, imbeded taxes in goods, and provide the same amount of income to the Federal government. Lower income citizens would be covered via a monthly check or credit. All citizens would have basic items available tax free. Included are FAQs about the plan and responses to negative arguments.


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