- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 11, 2013

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The Internal Revenue Service has been transformed from a neutral tax-collection agency into a politicized organization that persecutes its political enemies.

The United States is burdened with a 74,000-page, incomprehensible tax code riddled with special-interest loopholes. The code is an inefficient tax-collection mechanism and a drag on our economy.

Meanwhile, “Obamacare” is an impending train wreck. Major insurers are pulling out of the California market. Employers are cutting the part-time workweek to 29 hours and refusing to hire the 50th employee. Insurance premiums for the young will double or triple. The Department of Health and Human Services and the IRS have conceded their inability to implement Obamacare by postponing the employer mandate for a year. And yes, the IRS will have access to sensitive personal financial and medical data, which may be leaked or abused.

I propose we solve the IRS, tax code and Obamacare problems by passing two major pieces of legislation. First, we should adopt a robust flat tax, one so simple that you can calculate your taxes on a postcard. Second, we should repeal Obamacare and replace it with a health care plan that is market-driven, patient-centric and cost-effective. Such a plan would codify a series of disparate medical programs into one universal health care system with large administrative savings. To pay for it, employers could pay a payroll tax equal to 9 percent of total employee compensation but would no longer have the responsibility to provide health insurance to their employees. Employees would pay a payroll tax equal to 5 percent of their compensation.

THOMAS E. BOWER

Towson, Md.

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