Fair Tax Vs. Flat Tax: Which Is Right For America?

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

In light of rampant government waste and corruption within the IRS, more Americans than ever are calling for a complete overhaul of this nation’s tax system. Among conservatives, two potential solutions – the Fair Tax and a flat-rate tax system – are often among the most popular options.

During the recent Western Conservative Conference, a showdown between the two proposed revenue systems presented the pros and cons of each plan. Former syndicated radio host Neal Boortz, co-author of two books supporting the Fair Tax, squared off against Americans for Tax Reform’s Grover Norquist, who spoke in favor of a flat tax.

In reality, there was significant common ground between the two as both expressed the impending necessity of repealing a broken tax system. The pathway to achieving that common goal, however, offers several defining differences.

Flat Tax

Norquist expressed his desire to simplify the process by installing one rate for all American taxpayers. Under a flat tax, he said, he would recommend eliminating the so-called “death tax,” along with all state income and capital gains taxes.

“We need to tax consumption,” he explained, “not investment and savings. We need to tax income at one rate at the same rate.”

He said his “first objection to the Fair Tax is its name,” adding there are only “less destructive and more destructive ways to handle it … but fairness is not a part of it.”

In the end, he insisted, his goal would be to lower the tax rate to zero.

A major reason he supports one prevailing rate is to increase public involvement in the tax system.

“They always start with ‘I’m going to tax the rich,’” Norquist noted, explaining that when individuals hear only another segment of the population will be affected by a tax hike, they stop paying attention.

He concluded that a number of states are paving the way for his plan by eliminating or reducing the income tax burden on their residents.

“There are already nine states without income tax. We want to abolish them in all 57 states,” he said, referencing Barack Obama’s infamous campaign flub regarding the number of American states.

Norquist offered a level of support for the Flat Tax, though he explained that “we are more likely to get there first and more permanently” with the flat tax system.

Fair Tax

Boortz offered a somewhat more nuanced plan with his support of the Fair Tax, a proposal that has gained traction across the nation in part due to his work on two bestselling books. He explained that the plan is basically a nationwide sales tax; however, the cost of retail goods would not actually increase.

“Every single thing you buy, whether it’s an iPhone or a toaster or a blender or weed in Colorado,” he said, “everything has an embedded tax.”

Each of those incremental taxes would be erased under the Fair Tax model.

“If we get rid of all these taxes on individuals and on businesses, then that embedded tax disappears,” he explained. The result would be an approximate 23 percent drop in retail prices, which would be replaced with the Fair Tax.

Furthermore, he said the flat tax proposal “left the IRS in place,” while the Fair Tax could would only take effect after the repeal of the 16th Amendment.

The tax code, he explained, offered a version of a flat rate in 1986. Since then, however, it has been revised 11,000 times to become the incomprehensible mess taxpayers currently face each year.

According to surveys conducted with corporations located around the world, Boortz explained that virtually all would either expand or relocate to the U.S. under a Fair Tax system that removes the tax burden American companies currently encounter.

“You would have to hide under a bed to avoid getting a good job,” he said.

While there are important differences between the two proposals, both sides generally agree that either option is infinitely more desirable than the current system.

–B. Christopher Agee

Have an idea for a story? Email us at tips@westernjournalism.com

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

"Loophole" from Obama's IRS: Protect your IRA or 401(k) with gold and silver... click here to get a NO-COST Info Guide >


  1. if fair tax brings companies back to the US I vote for that…. although the name makes me think it is not fair; like 'the affordable care act' is not affordable.

  2. 3-5% depending on how much you make., this seems to work out for me. 15 years ago I made a certain amount of money, now I make less. if the scumbags didn't take so much out of me and only took 3-5% I could make it to the end of the month. Needless to say I run out of money 2-21/2 weeks in. I am in financial meltdown. I used to be the ELITE machine shop whiz, I can machine anything within millionths .0001 on an old Bridgeport.
    I am gifted in a way, Engineering background, metallurgy, military, heat treating, security clearance projects, ect. GM material, anyway. I am now bankrupt and looking to sweep the floor maybe somewhere. Thank you Clinton's, for my new future. N.A.F.T.A HAS TO GO!!!! AND NO!! TPP PACIFIC TRADE AGREEMENT!! THIS IS OUR DOOM!!! OBAMA PACT WITH DEVIL AND THE END OF AMERICA!!! RED ALERT!!!

    • Sic Semper Tyrannis says:

      It wasn't just Bill Clinton; it was Bill Clinton in collusion with Newt Gingrich and Foley during the lameduck session of Congress in 1994 IMMEDIATELY AFTER GINGRICH BECAME SPEAKER-ELECT IN THE SO-CALLED "REPUBLICAN REVOLUTION". It still amazes me how many Conservatives do not know this about Gingrich. I guess they see him on Faux Noise laughing it up with his fellow neocon worshipers like Hannity and just give him a free pass. Maybe, it's his colorful and professorial speeches at CPAC, which has now become anything but Conservative like everything else associated with the GOP Establishment. Don't take it from me though; take it from an established Conservative icon, Phyllis Schlafly of the Eagle Forum, who blew the whistle on Newt Gingrich in 2011 when she knew this despicable NWO CFR globalist scumbag was running for President…

      As Paul Harvey would say, "Now you know the REEEESSSSTTT of the story. Good……Dayyy!"

      • MuslimLuvChrist says:

        Newt in 2016!!!

        • Sic Semper Tyrannis says:

          Did you even bother to read what Phyllis Schlafly had to say about him??? She exposes how devious he is. Even when he had just won the Speakership in the Republican Revolution, he was still devising globalist plans and passing TREASONOUS legislation to utterly destroy this nation's manufacturing capabilities and Middle class along with 28,000,000+ jobs. He and Slick Willie were birds of a feather.

  3. I’m in favor of the Fair Tax model. Eliminating the criminal IRS is the goal.

  4. Edwardkoziol says:

    Either tax is better then what we have now.Obutthole and Holder couldn't use the IRS as a weapon. Instead of bringing down the military who actually protect this country we could save money getting rid of IRS workers.

  5. Sales tax would be better, eliminate all taxes and increase the sales tax. He who buys pays, if you don't have money to buy, no tax. If you're rich and buying all kinds of extravagant toys, you pay.

  6. Sic Semper Tyrannis says:

    I support the Fair Tax because it can bring back the 28,000,000 manufacturing jobs and God only knows how many related millions of dependent ancillary jobs that BOTH political parties of Congresswhores in the DC Mafia decimated at the behest of their Wall Street and Corporate Masters. In the same breath, however, I know this is just a moot exercise in what could have been had we ever had a government and country with integrity and Christian morality. We will NEVER see this in our lifetimes. All we will continue to see is more of our own destruction. Nice thought though.

  7. MuslimLuvChrist says:

    obama and holder are using the biased, corrupt, and broken IRS to go after people who have a certain political or religious view. The average working American, poor or rich or in-between, hates and fears the IRS for good reason. The IRS is able to seize your bank account or house without a court order, able to shut down your business overnight, the IRS is the closest thing to the Gestapo America has ever had. Clearly, obama includes intimidation and thought control as part of his plan for “transforming America.”

  8. Sic Semper Tyrannis says:

    If we eliminate the current progressive tax with its gazillion pages of tax code, what will all of the countless high-paid CPA's and bean counters out there do for a living??? Like I give a damn!

Speak Your Mind