The United States Tax System

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The United States tax system has an extensive history that has transformed from a modest system to a complex taxation system over the years. From the beginning, the tax system has undergone changes due to past wars, inclusion of social programs, changes to social programs, presidential views, and economic fluctuations. Every tax year, the tax laws continue to change from the methods of the past. In the years of the 1600’s and the middle 1700’s, the English settlers were the dominant people who inhabited the eastern region of the United States, then called the thirteen colonies. They fled from England to gain freedom from the domineering church. However, they were still under the control of England’s government. Although the colonies…show more content…
The increase in taxes, especially on tea, led to development of the Boston Tea Party, whose goal was to protest the new taxes. These events eventually lead the colonies into the American Revolution in year 1775.2 Soon after the revolution, the Articles of Confederation was crafted, which gave states their individual right to tax or govern without the control of the central government.
In addition to the formulation of the Articles of Confederation, the Civil War brought more changes to America’s tax system. During the war between the confederate south and the north in 1861, a new tax developed to assist in paying for the union’s increasing costs. Congress, “… passed the Revenue Act of 1861, which restored earlier excises taxes and imposed a tax on personal incomes. The income tax was levied at 3 percent on all incomes higher than $800 a year.”1 The income tax allowed the union to decrease their debts and permitted the government to have a consistent source of income from citizens.
In addition to the Civil War, World War I and the Great Depression had a significant impact on the United States’ tax system. Before the United States’ entry in to the war, they assisted much of Europe with weapons, gunpowder, civilian necessities and financial contributions. However, after President
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