TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Vatican Warns Against Higher Taxes to Address Economic Woes

L'Osservatore Romano editorial, Noah's Horizon:

During a prolonged crisis, inheritance taxes, new forms of taxation or similar alternatives reduce or wipe out resources for investments, discouraging the trust of investors, penalizing the cost of the public debt and the possibilities of its renewal at its expiration. In this context, imposing taxes on property and on income is equivalent to a suicidal anti-subsidiarity of the state to the citizen. Those who legally possess assets, on which they have paid the proper taxes, have contributed to creating wealth and, thanks precisely to these assets, continue to produce them with investments and consumption.

Further forms of taxation would not be synonymous with solidarity but only with greater public spending and, perhaps, a higher debt and more widespread poverty. High taxes penalize saving, generate distrust in the ability to stimulate recovery, hit families and prevent the formation of new ones, as well as creating uncertainty and precariousness in employment. In short, they lay the foundations for another phase of unsustainable development.

This is the situation to explain, avoiding -- to borrow Einstein's words -- deceptive simplifications. Every important action, to obtain success, must be clear in its context, in its objectives, clear in assessing the necessary resources and about their organization. Authentic global solutions to the crisis must therefore take into account what gave rise to it, its extent and the time and means required to resolve it. In other words it is necessary to reach a broader horizon. As Noah did when he raised his gaze and succeeded in going beyond himself and in saving humanity.

(Hat Tip: Edward Afield.)

Tax | Permalink

TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Vatican Warns Against Higher Taxes to Address Economic Woes:


If even the Catholic Church does not believe taxing the rich further in order to spend ourselves out of a crisis, who still does? Oh, how far have we come from the days of Liberation Theology...

Posted by: MG | Aug 30, 2011 6:56:02 AM

The College of Cardinals has elected the Tea Party candidate for Pope last time. They are planning to strike from the bible those passages about how difficult it is for a rich man to enter heaven.

Posted by: Catholic Guy | Aug 30, 2011 9:36:08 AM

This is not exactly encyclical level analysis. Much of Caritas in Veritate would contradict this say nothing of Gaudium in Spes, Progressio Populorum, Rerum Novarum, etc.

Posted by: CST Lives | Aug 30, 2011 8:26:47 PM

The Vatican's understanding of taxes and economics is astonishingly primitive.

Posted by: anon | Aug 31, 2011 12:03:36 AM

Meanwhile, world, don't use birth control, because that is not a source of human suffering at all. No way, no how. Babies. Lots of starving babies is the way to go. Yes sir.

Posted by: Matt | Aug 31, 2011 6:17:07 AM