February 7th, 2013
10:46 AM ET

Time to simplify the tax code

For more Last Look, watch GPS on Sundays at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. ET.

Look at this form 1040 in the video. Americans know that's the form we all fill out to file our income taxes. But this one looks different. Why? Well, because it's an antique. Sunday was the 100th anniversary of the 16th Amendment, which gave Congress the right to levy a federal personal income tax. And this was the first form for filers. When the filing deadline was March 1 instead of April 15 and the top tax rate was 6 percent on incomes over half a million dollars.

Now, the original tax act, the piece of legislation, was just 15 pages long. Today, the tax code has grown just a bit – to more than 73,000 pages with all of the rulings and regulations. Now, we can't get rates back to the 1913 levels, but can't we try to get back to something simple, straight forward and honest that would, once again, fit on 15 pages?

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Topics: Economy • GPS Show

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soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. ahmed

    3 Easy Steps to a Better Job

    February 7, 2013 at 9:54 pm | Reply
  2. hopefulspam

    let common sense prevail! How can anyone keep up with 73,000 pages of law. Time to start from square one.

    February 8, 2013 at 1:00 pm | Reply
  3. Billy

    Every polition wasd put in office by you, and you chose them by their apparent ability to do their job. But unfortunately these people are all from the high educated belief that complicated problems require complicated actions instead of realistic, common sense ones. maybe if we elected some intelligent people rather than educated ones we could get better leadership.

    February 9, 2013 at 6:36 am | Reply
  4. rightospeak

    Nothing new. It was and is the obvoius thing to do. Jimmy Carter talked about it and others, but little action. They can't even lower the volume on TV commercials blasting everybody's ears, which is also very obvious that needs change , but the people running this country serve only the oligarchs, not the people. It is by the oligarchs and for the oligarchs.So do not hold your breath . If they tried they may screw it up worse than it is.

    February 9, 2013 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  5. j. von hettlingen

    Perhaps it might never happen! No administration would muster enough courage to take on such Herculean task! They will leave it to future generations. If nothing had been done yesterday, nothing will be done tomorrow.

    February 10, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply

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