MD the quality of eliminating taxes

From: Wim Nusselder (
Date: Thu Apr 24 2003 - 22:35:28 BST

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    Dear Platt,

    You wrote 24 Apr 2003 11:14:50 -0400:
    'I'm all for eliminating taxes. I never heard a liberal say that.'

    Then I must be liberal by American standards (even though the political
    parties that call themselves 'liberal' in the Netherlands do so to refer to
    relative 'freedom from government intervention'). 'Liberal' in the
    Netherlands stands for right-wing. Being a member of the Green-Left party, I
    support a democratical government (financed by taxes) that leaves enough
    freedom for the market to create the wealth we need, but limits greed and
    over-exploitation of the environment that would result in social instability
    and ecological disaster. (Proper democracy -as in the Netherlands- doesn't
    create 'mob-rule', as you called it recently, but space for decision-making
    on the basis of rational balancing of interests.)

    A lot of good things would be impossible when taxes were eliminated: things
    which the market cannot organize, only very inefficiently or at the cost of
    too glaring injustices. Every Dutch party (including the liberal ones)
    agrees that a considerable government role -and thus taxes- are required for
    at least defence, police, administration of justice, maintaining good
    international relations, education, health care and guaranteeing development
    aid at a minimum level of 0,7% of GNP (agreed on by all donor countries some
    30 years ago, but only attained by 5 countries).

    You have often quoted with approval:
    'The instrument of conversation between society and biology has always been
    a policeman or a soldier and his gun.' ('Lila' chapter 24)
    How should this policeman and this soldier and his gun be financed according
    to you, if not with taxes????
    And the war against Iraq, which you supported??

    In the Netherlands anyone who would propose eliminating taxes would not be
    taken serious. Can you plase explain why I should take you serious when you

    With friendly greetings,


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