The Capitalist Infidel has just read a letter to the
Propaganda Straits Times Forum Gossip Coloumn asking for estate duties to be increased. The Capitalist Infidel thinks that Mr Goh should take Economics lessons and that the Editor of the Straits Times should have his head checked for letting such a letter to be published.
Mr Goh felt that the rich are getting richer and that it was unfair for their children to get a headstart because of it. After The Capitalist Infidel stopped laughing, he remembered that this has been posted on the national Propaganda broadsheet. Apparently, after censorship of the good arguments, the Editor felt that this was one of the few letters worth publishing. This is proof that only the dim survive their censorship.
Allow The Capitalist Infidel to display his superiority. Estate tax involves taxing the money you leave your children after you pass away. Increasing it means that the government takes more of it when you pass away. Why the government would stop you passing money to your children is beyond The Capitalist Infidel.
Passing money to your children is taxless before you die, but after that, it is something to be discouraged. This gives an incentive for parents to transfer their possessions before they die, when they still need it. And the government wonders why the elderly are giving their properties away and ending up with children abandoning their parents. The children are wrong, but the government just gives them an added excuse, they are an accessory.
And yes, it may be unfair for the children of the rich to have a handout the others do not recieve. What Mr Goh left out was that they also recieve better healthcare, more attention with regards to education, a nicer house to live in when they were kids and the luxury to not worry about money. In fact, I cannot offer you an exhaustive list because there are too many advantages. Come to think of it, that’s what people get money for, so that they and their families will get to live in better conditions. Take this away and the most productive people will move out of Singapore.
Mr Goh’s logic is flawed. Grossly flawed. He feels that we should remove the advantages people have so that things can be fair. Should we stop the smartest kids from going to school to level the playing field? It’s not fair that the hardworking kids should get better grades either. Everyone should get the same grades in school. How’s that for fairness Mr Goh?
To top it all off, estate duties also encourage the rich to send their money out of Singapore, where it cannot be taxed. Very smart Mr Goh, capital flight will solve all the problems we have regarding fairness.
His letter is as follows:
Increase, not scrap, estate duty
I UNDERSTAND there are people lobbying to abolish estate duty. According to the Government, the estate duty collected had not been significant. The passing of wealth from one generation to another creates a grossly unfair headstart for the wealthy few. In a civil society, it is the duty of the Government, as a matter of principle, to tax such estates to ensure that the future generation’s less fortunate have a fairer chance to seek space for themselves.
Tax policy should thus be finetuned to be more effective in collecting more estate duty as the rich are getting richer. The world’s two richest men, Mr Bill Gates and Mr Warren Buffett, are strongly against bequeathing great wealth to the next generation. Let us heed their views.
Goh Hock Tee