Lawful resistance an option for dejected taxpayers
Taxpayers are increasingly worried they may be financing a corrupt system through tax payments, writes Patricia Williams
On the first day of the 2016 Tax Indaba, South African Revenue Service (SARS) commissioner Tom Moyane called for "tax morality", bringing to mind the well-known saying, "be careful what you wish for". Fast-forward to today, and "tax morality" has a very different meaning. More and more, taxpayers are asking themselves if they can, in good conscience, pay taxes in the same manner as they have done in the past. Larissa-Margareta Batrancea of the Babes-Bolyai University in Romania and others in a 2012 paper entitled Understanding the Determinants of Tax Compliance Behaviour as a Prerequisite for Increasing Public Levies argue that politics determines the morality of taxpayers. "The structure of a tax system can hinder taxpayers’ willingness to comply, if they perceive the system as being too bureaucratic, with a high tax burden and a high number of taxes. In the same vein, an inefficient fiscal policy mirrored in squandering of public funds and low quality of public goods makes taxpaye...