- Vladislav Shabanov
- Russian Federation
Should citizens pay taxes by themselves?
In Russia, the taxation law obliges an employer to pay taxes on behalf of every employee. For example, if you have monthly salary amounted to 100000 rubles, you are paid 87000 and other 13000 your company will pay to the state later, without any action from your side.
On the one hand, it's very useful, because a person, who has only one full-time job can completely forget about income statements. Furthermore, the practice is very comfortable for the state which can focus on legal entities who obviously have less chances to hide assets than individuals. All entities' workers are charged every month, simultaneously, in one transaction. Hence, this is very cost-effective method both for the people and for the state.
On the other hand, the routine hides under the hood the whole idea about the state and its expenses. Only several percent of the citizens understand how the state collects the money, and how it spends it. The others leave this matter completely outside their consciousness. When a philistine reads in a newspaper about
billions theft from the state treasury, he scarcely realizes that a bit of that money was stolen from his own wallet.
The worst thing for our society is that the government can increase taxes without any risk to lose votes, because only entrepreneurs, who clearly are small population group, understand what's happened. For instance, this year all Russian companies have started to pay more taxes on every ruble of their employees' salaries without any awareness from the personnel. The companies simply have
lost some fraction of their net income.
For me, this is bad practice, because it corrupts both the state and the citizens. The former can do whatever they want with minimal care about effectiveness while the latter live in nonchalance never worrying about common, nobody's money.
What do you think about it?
Can someone from the US recount, what do average Americans feel when they spend their time to pay taxes?