Clear your diary and set aside ten minutes to read this. It is a detailed ASI report on the introduction of a flat tax and makes for very interesting and compelling reading. Whatever you think about the idea, it is set to be a big issue for Britain and the EU to face up to in the coming years, especially with the near revolution that seems to be sweeping Eastern Europe about it.
The ASI proposals would lift ten million of the poorest tax payers out of paying income tax, with a flat rate of 22% for everybody else. The rich would pay a greater proportion of tax in relation to the poorest tax payers than is the case at the moment.
Yes there are problems to be overcome - most notably in selling the short-term reduction in revenues and finding where the money would come from (though Gershon and James are good starts for this). The country isn't ready for it yet, as they need to see the impact of New Labour played out, or see a moral case, made for a smaller state, on the grounds of principles and effectiveness. However, as we see an ever more bloated state in the coming Blair/Brown years the battle is there to be fought and won. Certainly it is more compelling than the tinkering proposed on the Tory benches and would involve only a slightly greater amount of savings than currently outlined. The proposal's principle is certainly worthwhile and its practicalities certainly offer food for thought.