Wednesday, March 1, 2006
E. Frank Stephenson (Berry College, Department of Economics) has published An Argument for Tax Reform Based on Judeo-Christian Ethics: A Rejoinder, 36 Cumb. L. Rev. 103 (2006). Here is the opening:
In her influential 2002 Alabama Law Review article [An Argument for Tax Reform Based on Judeo-Christian Ethics, 54 Ala. L. Rev. 1 (2002), blogged here], University of Alabama law professor Susan Pace Hamill argues that Alabama's tax system is offensive to Judeo-Christian teachings because it imposes an undue burden on low-income Alabamians and because it raises insufficient revenue to adequately fund education and other public services. Although others have previously raised these concerns, Professor Hamill's treatise generated national attention and provided a major impetus for Alabama's attempted tax overhaul in 2003. Although her thesis was not without controversy, Professor Hamill's claims have not been subjected to critical scrutiny. This article provides that critique and finds that several of Professor Hamill's claims do not withstand careful analysis. In particular, available data do not support key assertions regarding the taxation of timber or the overall adequacy of school funding.