As I added:
I have no desire to question the authority of a great Scottish moral philosopher but it is fair to note that Smith might be a little surprised at the scope and range of taxes to which his principles are now being applied. He would, for example, have been unfamiliar with the idea of:
Capital gains tax
Many other modern levies and charges.
Smith specifically discusses taxes upon wages, consumption taxation (thinking that that on necessaries was a bad idea, upon luxuries just fine) and even talks about the problems of taxation upon gross wages as with the employers’ part of NI. And that’s something I checked in 2 minutes with Mr. Google, my friend.
Smith also rejects taxes upon income from capital at one stage so the idea of a corporation tax is unlikely to have surprised him. Nor CGT in fact.
Where is it that Ritchie gets these ideas from?
These ideas are, of course, familiar. Adam Smith might have used the term equity rather than proportionality; otherwise these come straight from The Wealth of Nations [and date from 1776]
Cretin. Smith actually said “in proportion”. But here’s his report to the MSPs.
It’s my suggestion that these are true economic and social principles that can really underpin tax in Scotland (and elsewhere come to that) and will, as a result, guide the work of ministers, MSPs, Revenue Scotland and those concerned with Scottish economic and taxation debate more appropriately than some maxims written in 1776, however useful they might have been at the time.
Smith’s just so old hat now, needs to be replaced by me. Me that is. MEEEEE!