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Learning to Love Form 1040 – Two Cheers for the Return-Based Mass Income Tax - Chicago Scholarship Online
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Learning to Love Form 1040: Two Cheers for the Return-Based Mass Income Tax

Lawrence Zelenak


No one likes paying taxes, much less the process of filing tax returns. For years, would-be reformers have advocated replacing the return-based mass income tax with a flat tax, federal sales tax, or some combination thereof. Congress itself has commissioned studies on the feasibility of a system of exact withholding. But might the much-maligned return-based taxation method serve an important yet overlooked civic purpose? This book argues that filing taxes can strengthen fiscal citizenship by prompting taxpayers to reflect on the contract they have with their government and the value — or perce ... More

Keywords: taxes, tax returns, reformers, income tax, flat tax, federal sales tax, congress, return-based taxation, fiscal citizenship, taxpayers

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780226018928
Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: September 2013 DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226019086.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Lawrence Zelenak, author