The bottleneck at the Port of San Juan has one cause: government. The Commonwealth’s attempt to tax anything that moves (and tax it more than once) has driven up prices, encouraged evasion and now left food and other materials on the docks waiting for a computer program to be fixed.
This does nothing to help anyone and in the end, I doubt it really helps the bottom line of Puerto Rico’s budget and debt woes.
Time to fix it.
Puerto Rico needs to simplify its tax code: I recommend 3 taxes; income, corporate and sales. That’s it. All other taxes should be repealed. Next I recommend that all three be charged at the exact same percentage. For example, if the sales tax is 6.6 percent, then the tax on payroll income and bonuses would also be 6.6 percent and so would the corporate tax.
The reason for tying these together is to make it harder for government to hide new taxes. If they go up for one, they go up for all. If they go down for one, they go down for all.
The next step is to eliminate all deductions on personal income and eliminate the need for filing income tax returns for individual. How much money would be saved if a million people didn’t have to file a piece of paper every April 15th, pay for accountants and tax preparers and then pay again for people to review and audit them in government?
This simple flat tax would make it easier to track revenue, easier to pay taxes, easier to collect them and they would not interfere with free trade. This would also require some discipline on the part of law makers which has been sorely lacking in the last 5 decades.
I am a firm believer that government should be limited and streamlined. Less government is better government. Fewer laws, fewer taxes mean fewer opportunities for government to shoot us all in the foot, or to let our food rot on docks.