Tax Evasion, Tax Misery and Ethics: Comparative Studies of Korea, Japan and China
Robert W. McGee
Fayetteville State University
The ethics of tax evasion has been discussed sporadically in the theological and philosophical literature for at least 500 years. Martin Crowe wrote a doctoral thesis that reviewed much of that literature in 1944. The debate revolved around about 15 issues. Over the centuries, three main views evolved on the topic. But the public finance literature has paid scant attention to this issue, perhaps because of the belief that tax evasion is always unethical.
This paper examines the tax evasion ethics data for Korea, Japan and China that was gathered as part of a much larger study on human beliefs and values. Country comparisons were made as well as comparisons based on gender, age, education, religion and marital status to determine whether views on tax evasion differ based on those demographics. Comparisons are then made to tax evasion studies conducted in western countries that examine responses on the basis of gender. The results of these comparisons show that the findings in the present study confirm the findings of some other studies but conflict with those of some other studies.
The present study also examines the data for the most recent Tax Misery Index figures for Korea, Japan, the People's Republic of China, Hong Kong and Taiwan as well as the most recent Index of Economic Freedom data for these countries.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 47
Keywords: tax evasion, ethics, tax misery, Korea, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan
JEL Classification: D6, E62, J16, J14, J1, K34, K42, M14, O53, P35working papers series
Date posted: June 22, 2007
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