At one of the Republican primary debates, a few weeks ago, a citizen from the audience asked (roughly), “How much of every dollar that I earn should the government take, and how much should I keep?” The candidate to whom the question was directed talked all around the issue of taxes, but didn’t answer the question until the next day, when the answer was (roughly) “You should keep all that you earn.”
This is silly pandering to selfish fools. And this question distinguishes Libertarians from Anarchists.
If a government has no income, that government will fall, creating a vacuum, which will be filled by some other political body. Who would seize power? Most likely someone intending to profit from it — thugs, gangs or a foreign power. Thus, anyone seriously seeking to abolish all taxation is seeking the abolition of the government, and the likely installation of a successor tyranny. The abolition of taxation does not perpetuate an environment free of fraud and force. Some government is needed to continue an environment free of fraud and force. Some taxation is needed to continue a government to continue an environment free of fraud or force.
Unfortunately, the extreme of the Libertarian position, Anarchy, produces a result contradictory to Liberty.
Thus the delayed answer was a pandering from a fraudulent “libertarian” to appeal to fraudulent “libertarians”.
Given that taxation of some sort is necessary to preserve any society or culture, what taxation is fair? Get what you pay for; pay for what you get. What do we get from our government? We get protection to earn a living and to enjoy our wealth. Someone living under a bridge, begging for breakfast, does the same whether in the U.S.A., China or Somalia. They are at similar risks. Someone running an honest business has their honesty protected in the U.S.A., somewhat in China, and nearly ignored in Somalia. The government of the U.S.A. enforces honesty on you and those you do business with, whether your business is an industry powerhouse, and entrepreneurship, or earning a wage working for someone else. Yes, protection of every transaction is what you get from the government, so every transaction is a measure of what should be paid. Further, someone can sit safely at home or move throughout the land, and enjoy an accumulated wealth even without continuing income. One without wealth gains no such benefit equally from any political system or body. Get what you pay for; pay for what you get.
We do have a problem with unfair taxation. But the solution is to do it right, not to do it wrong different.