There's a lot of discussion on sound money here. I'm pretty sure that you're all barking up the wrong tree. Well...maybe not the wrong tree...but you're definitely not barking up the tree with the most cats in it. The sound money tree has at most 1 senile squirrel...while the tax choice tree has at least 10 cats. Aren't our lives too short to spend barking up the tree that doesn't have the most cats in it?
It's for sure that the tax choice tree has the most cats. Don't take my word for it though. Here are three fairly recent articles on tax choice.
1. This one was written by a libertarian...
Why Mandatory Taxes Are Bad -- And How The Government Should Fix Them (But Probably Won't)
2. This one was written by a liberal...
No Tax Increase Without Recompense
3. This one was written by a scientist...
American Governance: Allowing Taxpayers to Decide How Their Own Tax Payments Should Be Spent
A libertarian, a liberal and a scientist all agree that taxpayers should be allowed to directly allocate their taxes. This is why advocating tax choice will give us the most bang for our buck. The thing is though...when a libertarian or a liberal believe in tax choice...they then become pragmatarians.
Don't get me wrong though...the idea of tax choice has a huge obstacle before it can be implemented. That obstacle is economic ignorance. For example...consider the first comment on the article written by the libertarian. Good thing we have pretty much all the tools we need to combat economic ignorance...The Concepts of Libertarian Economics.
Here's my reply to the comment...
1. If taxpayers have to pay taxes anyways...then why would a truly necessary war be a hard sell? If the danger really IS clear and present...then why would taxpayers not consider the safety of their family and friends to be a priority? That's not even close to plausible. Once we allow taxpayers to decide for themselves whether war should be a spending priority...other countries will follow suit...and it's extremely unlikely that offensive wars will ever be a priority for enough taxpayers. The opportunity costs of offensive wars will always be too high. In other words, people will always have better things to spend their money on.
2. According to Mises, "the capitalist society is a democracy in which every penny represents a ballot paper." Every time you spend a dollar you're voting for how our society's scarce resources should be used. Why is it "fair" for a poor person's single drop in the public sector to outweigh their entire ocean of votes in the private sector? Every day they vote for the people who provide them with food, shelter, clothing, entertainment... so why should all these votes be completely disregarded in the public sector? Actions speak louder than words. By preventing taxpayers from spending their taxes in the public sector...you're effectively silencing the voices of poor people. There's nothing even vaguely fair about that. How they want our society's limited resources to be used absolutely has to matter. If it doesn't matter...then society's limited resources will not be adequately used for their benefit. That's the complete opposite of fair.
And if you think you know better than poor people themselves what their priorities should be...then use your own taxes to indicate exactly how much you care about their "true" priorities. If you do in fact value whatever public goods they need to thrive...then I'm sure you'll have no problem sacrificing your own priorities to pay for their "actual" priorities.
"Only where we ourselves are responsible for our own interests and are free to sacrifice them has our decision moral value. We are neither entitled to be unselfish at someone else's expense nor is there any merit in being unselfish if we have no choice. The members of a society who in all respects are made to do the good thing have no title to praise." - Hayek
3. Again, you spend a few hours per year voting...but you spend the rest of your time voting with your wallet. Why does it benefit anybody for us to disregard your true priorities? How does it benefit society when half our nation's revenue is misallocated? Without our spending decisions...there's absolutely no accurate feedback to guide how public organizations use our society's limited resources.
4. Whether or not something is a public good should be decided by voters. If enough voters decide that saving whales should be a public good...then so be it. If you disagree then nobody would force you to give your taxes to the EPA. Just like if environmentalists disagreed that funding another war is necessary...then nobody would force them to give their taxes to the DoD. If we can't learn to tolerate each other's values...then it's doubtful we'll be able to persuade the people in the Middle East to tolerate our values.
5. Directly allocating taxes would be optional. Congress would still be there. So what would it mean if doing congress's job is a bigger priority for you than doing your own job? If a doctor truly is a life saver...then why would you hesitate allowing people to decide for themselves whether they put their lives in his hands?