Does the Freedom Dividend require more taxes?

Yes, but you need to consider the cost/benefit of these taxes, and the harmful effects of the taxes.

How do you feel about the VAT?

Keep in mind that the UBI is added to your overall pay. You won’t pay more in VAT than you receive in UBI unless you spend over $10,000/month.

Notice that people who spend more money will pay more in VAT. That’s why a rich person will pay much more than a middle class person. And it’s not a wild idea: 160 countries already have a VAT or something similar. [1]

Also notice that all of Yang’s other policies will help out our country. If you’re freaking out about more taxes, I am with you. I was always against new taxes as well. But here are the points that changed my mind:

  1. The tax is a consumption tax. Income tax is one of the worst taxes from an economic perspective (it discourages working and production). So I’m glad it’s a VAT and not something else.
  2. Consumer prices have been falling for a while thanks to technology, but the gains have mostly accrued to big tech companies. Amazon, Netflix, and others paid zero in taxes last year because there’s no national VAT. Yet their market caps (stock valuations) have been rising enormously, and non-shareholders (the vast majority of Americans!) don’t benefit from that. The new tax helps to harvest the gains from innovation and technology and share that abundance with all Americans.
  3. The reason I am against taxes is that it is the government taking our money and spending it themselves. The Freedom Dividend is different. It goes directly to individuals for them to spend. It’s not the government spending it, it is people like you and me. A trickle-up economy.
  4. A big problem with existing taxes is that hundreds of billions of dollars go to welfare programs that trap people in poverty because if they gain better employment, they risk losing their benefits. So I’m glad that the Freedom Dividend helps to consolidate, and eventually eliminate, many of the existing welfare programs.

[1] How will we pay for the Freedom Dividend?

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