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Supplement property taxes by adding a tax on intellectual property?

September 23, 2019
Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

Letter to the Editor:

Anne Michael is seeking more income for the schools. 11,000 dollars per student isn't enough. Maybe we could supplement property taxes by adding a tax on intellectual property. Intellectual property is a real thing. You can patent it, you can defend it in court, it is an asset.

So maybe we could gauge intellectual property via education. The smarter you are the more money you make. We could gauge education via diplomas and degrees. If you don't have a high school degree, you don't get taxed. If you have a high school degree, you should be making more money, therefore we should charge a surtax for your intellectual property-- a high school diploma. So everyone with a high school diploma would pay an extra- - let's say-- 1000 dollars. If you have a two year degree then maybe it could be 2500 dollars. If you have a four year degree then you have a true asset. You are part of an elite group. You should be some of the wealthiest people around and can afford an additional 10,000 dollars. If you are by chance one of the top 1% and you have a PhD or Masters or Doctorate or something similar, it should be upwards of 20,000 dollars.

Specialty trades and professions could have their own assessed value. Lawyers, law enforcement, welders, linemen, government employees, etc... would all get assessed with how valuable their intellectual property is and pay accordingly.

One might then argue that just because they have a degree or education they might not be making more money. Or they might argue they are still paying for it. Or they might argue that they have worked very hard to earn their intellectual property degree and it is very unfair to tax them on it. For example teachers have to have a four year degree, so they would all automatically pay in 2500 dollars.

That doesn't seem fair really, they are providing an essential service after all. Well too bad I guess. Welcome to the world of property taxes. If you want to start farming, also an essential service, you can buy 600 acres and borrow every single bit of the money to buy it, and be in debt for 30-40 years, and you will immediately have a 15-20,000 dollar property tax bill every year. That doesn't seem all that fair either.

So that's my point here. I don't expect to tax intellectual property, I don't want to raise taxes at all, but how would you like it if the government came to you and said because you have an asset to make a living off of you owe them thousands of dollars every year. It's absurd to think you should pay thousands of dollars in taxes just because you chose to invest in an education so that you can raise a family. If you think it would be unfair to tax your diploma, then now you understand why I think it is unfair to tax property.

Adam Todd




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