If TEAL is a Can-Do Tax, what then is a Can’t-Do Tax?

Put simply, can’t do taxes are just about every other tax system in the world, including South Africa’s present tax system.  They collect taxes from too small a sector of the economy and tax that sector too much in a too complex manner and are too costly to administer. They tax at too high a rate and financially hurt too many people and have too many tax loopholes arising from their complexity and after all is said and done they are still unable to collect sufficient taxes to satisfy the needs of their societies, which suffer as a consequence.  

These are the CAN’T DO TAXES.

How do we know whether or not a tax system consists of Can’t Do Taxes?  Most simply, it is measured by the amount of borrowings a nation has had to accumulate in order to function.  These borrowings are called the National Debt or Sovereign Debt.

Some prime examples are SA’s, the UK’s and the US’s.  South Africa’s national debt, is in the region of 40% of its GDP (408 Billion US$ or 4.1 Trillion S A Rands 2012). So do the math – The National debt round about 2013 is about R1.6 Trillion, and climbing)  Here is a really neat way of viewing the national debt.  It is South Africa’s National Debt Clock. Then take a look at the UK’s National Debt Clock and then at the US’s National Debt Clock.

Here are the world’s nations listed by Government Debt.  We are somewhere in the middle of a pretty sorry bunch.  Take comfort, at least we are not alone. Did someone say that?

Maybe some are comforted by the company they keep.  TEAL‘s view is we are all headed across the same ocean in the same leaky bucket.  The bucket of CAN’T DO TAXES.  We don’t draw any comfort from the company we keep.  We want to leave the bucket.