Below is an excerpt from Steve Forbes 2014 article “Make it flat”. Perhaps it’s now the time to listen. His proposal first came into prominence when he ran for President in 1996 and warned of the strain on the nation’s economy if the national debt continued to increase. He was shot down from both sides because, well you know, his forte is finances so he must be looking out for the rich. But his point was the debt had risen from about 1 trillion in 1980 to a little over 5 trillion in 16 years.

Those were the good old days. We’re past 18 trillion now and climbing. But why his argument makes sense now is that the IRS is having its own difficulties. Besides, the tax code is too lengthy, we have too many taxes, no one can figure it out without a CPA or three and finally, its just time. The world is becoming very complicated and the country needs ‘simple’. Imagine what it would be like to really measure the success of our elected officials – with one number. If the tax percentage goes up, they better have an explanation (a real one, not it’s the other parties’ fault). If that number goes down, keep them in office. How does Steve’s suggestion sound to you?

-Mark Schuster, Partner


The federal tax code is beyond redemption. We should kill it and institute a flat tax. My flat-tax proposal calls for a 17% tax rate for all, with generous deductions for individuals and families ( a family of four would owe no federal income tax on their first $46,000). And that’s it—no tax on savings and no death tax. The federal corporate tax rate would be dropped to 17%, and capital investments would be expensed immediately. There are other worthy variations of the flat tax.

Let’s not repeat the mistake of 1986 and pass a reform bill that runs hundreds of pages. Junk the federal income tax code and start over!