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Why Philanthropy MattersHow the Wealthy Give, and What It Means for Our Economic Well-Being$
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Zoltan J. Acs

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780691148625

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691148625.001.0001

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Changing the Tax Laws

Changing the Tax Laws

(p.200) Epilogue Changing the Tax Laws
Why Philanthropy Matters

Zoltan J. Acs

Princeton University Press

This epilogue discusses two issues and how to deal with them: the indiscriminate use of income for personal consumption and the use of wealth for maintaining a class structure. Robert Frank suggests that the way to deal with indiscriminate use of income for personal consumption is to institute a progressive consumption tax. A progressive consumption tax has been supported by both the Right and the Left. Even Milton Friedman suggested in a 1943 article that a progressive consumption tax is the best way to reduce conspicuous consumption and encourage investment. With respect to the use of wealth to maintain a class structure, the epilogue explains why we need an estate tax. It argues that the estate tax is important for sustaining philanthropy, which has been wedded to promoting opportunity creation and innovation throughout American history.

Keywords:   income, personal consumption, wealth, class structure, Robert Frank, consumption tax, estate tax, philanthropy, opportunity creation, innovation

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