Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Can the incidence of tax fraud be as high in general as it is among political appointees?

From Timothy Geithner to Tom Daschle, and now Nancy Killefer, the incidence of tax fraud seems unusually high. I would not dream of hiding income, yet, it seems to be common. Is this the American way, and I just missed the memo? Sadly, I believe that most Americans report their income honestly and see payment of taxes as civic duty. When among those who do not are those who seek to lead the nation, I am disappointed.

1 comment:

Jonathan said...

It would be interesting to know (a) how many report honestly, and (b) how many regard themselves as honour-bound to do so.

I would guess the first number is higher than the second. A certain proportion of people probably report honestly because doing otherwise takes more mental effort and may get them into trouble.

But the financial incentive not to report honestly is significant, and not everyone regards taxation as moral.