While it would be difficult to find someone who actually enjoys paying taxes, most people recognize that they do serve a purpose. This fact is sometimes obscured both by the complexity of tax laws and by the inefficient ways that federal revenues are sometimes spent. In theory, higher taxes lead to more comprehensive social services.
Due to the Baby Boom between the years 1945 and 1964, there is a huge number of people in the United States who are currently approaching retirement. High taxes help to fund Social Security, a system that, according to Social Security Administrator Michael J. Astrue, is beginning to be strained by this large demographic. Society will benefit from having its elders well cared for because if they are not, they will end up putting an even greater financial strain on public resources.
A comprehensive and vibrant educational system is a cornerstone of a functional society, but it comes at a steep price. There are huge costs associated with buildings, maintenance, salaries and supplies. Nearly all of this is paid for through the public coffer, meaning the bill is footed by taxpayers. According to a report by Rasmussen, 54 percent of Americans are unwilling to pay higher taxes for education. Without a good educational system, illiteracy rates and incompetence will increase, leading to more individuals who are a drain on their society because they have no marketable skills.
An industrial society is dependent on huge, complex and expensive infrastructures, including highways, water treatment plants, electrical grids, telecommunications networks and postal delivery systems. Many of these systems are publicly owned, and those that are private are usually subsidized to some extent from the public purse. Taxes are the main source of funding for maintaining these systems. High taxes allow infrastructure to be maintained more thoroughly and repaired more quickly and efficiently when it breaks down. Lower taxes can lead to a lack of resources for maintaining infrastructure, which could conceivably lead to even greater expenses in the future when these infrastructures begin to degrade and need repair or replacement.
- Zompist: Why The Rich Should Pay More Taxes
- Rasmussen Reports: Older Americans More Supportive Of Higher Taxes To Help Social Security Than Those Who Are Younger
- The Economist: Resenting the Rich: This House Believes That the Rich Should Pay Higher Taxes
- Rasmussen Reports: Most Americans Not Willing to Pay Higher Taxes for Public Employees, Entitlement Programs
- Projo: Aging Boomers Strain Resources of Benefit Offices