Delivered January 18, 2013 as the keynote address at a conference cosponsored by Pepperdine Law School and Tax Analysts.
The 1986 Tax Reform Act gave our income tax a
good cleansing, but its ink had hardly dried before
Congress started adding new tax breaks and raising
rates. A replay is simply inadequate now to address
our current economic and fiscal challenges. A dramatic
reform that uses a goods and services tax to
reduce our nation’s reliance on income taxation is
the only path forward that will, once again, embrace
both virtue and justice and enhance economic
growth without abandoning tax equity. We now
need a major overhaul of our nation’s tax system,
not just another oil change and lubrication.