Dreaming the Impossible Dream: Is a Wealth Tax Now Possible in America?

33 Pages Posted: 2 Mar 2014 Last revised: 4 Mar 2014

See all articles by Richard Lavoie

Richard Lavoie

University of Akron - School of Law

Date Written: March 2, 2014


It is often thought that a direct tax on individual wealth is a political non-starter in the United States. Not only is such a tax arguably unconstitutional, but as a psychological matter it goes against the American psyche. That is, each of us hold out hope that someday we might become rich too, so we will not support any tax perceived as a “soak the rich” ploy. But has wealth inequality in the United States now reached the breaking point? Might recent public attention to the issue of economic inequality indicate that it might be possible to make a wealth tax a reality? This article will examine the utility and political viability of adopting a wealth tax in the United States.

Keywords: tax, wealth inequality

Suggested Citation

Lavoie, Richard, Dreaming the Impossible Dream: Is a Wealth Tax Now Possible in America? (March 2, 2014). U of Akron Legal Studies Research Paper No. 14-01. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2402978 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2402978

Richard Lavoie (Contact Author)

University of Akron - School of Law ( email )

150 University Ave.
Akron, OH 44325-2901
United States

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