Tax reform was going to be tax simplification. Tax returns on post cards. Right. Read this piece by John Cassidy explaining that besides its "unfairness" and "corrupt nature," [w]hat isn’t yet fully appreciated" about the Trump tax legislation
is how porous and potentially unstable the rest of the tax code will be after the bill is passed. With a corporate rate of just twenty per cent, and a big new break for proprietors of unincorporated businesses and certain types of partnerships, the new code will contain enormous incentives for tax-driven restructurings, creative accounting, and outright fraud. Every tax adviser and scammer in the country will be looking for ways to reclassify regular salary income as favored types of business income. *** Perhaps that is what Republicans want to happen. Undoubtedly, there are some in the Party who would like to see the tax base decimated, the I.R.S. crippled, and the federal government forced to slash spending on domestic programs, particularly entitlement programs. But, for anybody who believes in a properly functioning government, a rational, clearly defined tax system is essential. The Republican reform doesn’t meet that standard.
Economists across the spectrum generally are skeptical of the claim that this legislation will significantly aid the economy, and they flat-out reject the notion that the bill will pay for itself (rather than create massive deficits). But the bill does promise something: more than full employment for tax advisers, accountants, and lawyers.