Carte blanche taxation

The Post and Courier, Charleston, S.C.: President Barack Obama has consistently insisted that the wealthy should pay their “fair share” of taxes. Sounds fair enough — assuming that you can trust the Internal Revenue Service to play fair.

But how much of a person’s income — or a company’s profits — is government’s “fair share”? And how high can taxes go before they become not just unfair but unproductive in generating government revenue?

That defining debate persists. However, there should be no debate about the folly of elevating taxes on the rich to this ludicrous level, as reported last week by Reuters.

The over-the-top taxing included a 75 percent surcharge on incomes of over one million euros, fulfilling a 2012 campaign pledge from Socialist Francois Hollande in his successful run for president (of France).

Fortunately, though, France’s Constitutional Council has rightly ruled the truly confiscatory tax rates on the well-to-do to be “unfair.”

The Socialists now plan to inflict that extra bite on companies instead of individuals.

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