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Full-Text Articles in Law

When The Bough Breaks: The U.S. Tax Court's Branch Difficulties, Leandra Lederman Jan 2015

When The Bough Breaks: The U.S. Tax Court's Branch Difficulties, Leandra Lederman

Articles by Maurer Faculty

This essay highlights the confusion over which of the three branches of government (if any) is home to the U.S. Tax Court, which hears over 95% of litigated federal tax cases. This uncertainty recently resulted in a separation of powers challenge to the Tax Court. There is a pressing need for the Tax Court’s status to be resolved, to decrease its insularity and increase transparency and accountability.


The Case For Taxing (All Of) Labor Income, Consumption, Capital Income, And Wealth, David Gamage Jan 2015

The Case For Taxing (All Of) Labor Income, Consumption, Capital Income, And Wealth, David Gamage

Articles by Maurer Faculty

Perhaps the most fundamental questions in tax legal scholarship concern debates about what should be the ideal tax base or tax bases. In particular, scholars have vigorously disagreed about (1) whether the United States should follow other developed countries in supplementing its income tax with a value-added consumption tax, and (2) whether governments should seek to tax capital income and wealth or should instead seek to redesign or replace income taxes with progressive consumption taxes.

The prior economics-oriented theoretical literature on these questions has largely focused on analyzing labor supply and savings behaviors. Yet the existing empirical literature does not …


Foreword--King V. Burwell Symposium: Comments On The Commentaries (And On Some Elephants In The Room), David Gamage Jan 2015

Foreword--King V. Burwell Symposium: Comments On The Commentaries (And On Some Elephants In The Room), David Gamage

Articles by Maurer Faculty

This invited essay reviews the pieces submitted for the Pepperdine Law Review symposium on the King v. Burwell case. The thrust of this essay's response commentary is to praise the submitted essays for their excellence and insightfulness, but to suggest that the submitted essays nonetheless might benefit from focusing more on the role of the political mobilization that resulted in the King v. Burwell dispute. Ultimately, this essay suggests that what may have motivated the Supreme Court to develop and apply its new "deep economic and political significance" test in this this case may not have been anything inherent to …


Book Review. Reviving Fiscal Citizenship, Ajay K. Mehrotra Jan 2015

Book Review. Reviving Fiscal Citizenship, Ajay K. Mehrotra

Articles by Maurer Faculty

In recent years, numerous lawmakers, policy analysts, and scholars have been decrying the many defects of the present U.S. income tax system. Few have attempted to defend our return-based mass income tax. This essay reviews Learning to Love Form 1040, Lawrence Zelenak’s stirring and persuasive defense of a simplified version of our present federal income tax system. In contrast to the conventional economic critiques, Zelenak explores the underappreciated social, cultural, and political benefits of a return-based, mass income tax. Chief among these, he argues, is the existing regime’s potential to raise the tax consciousness of the average citizen and to …