I think that we’d end up with a healthier economy if we’d simplify the tax code to just one law.
It should simply be:
For any sale by an American (or American Company), the local government gets X percent, the state government gets X percent, and the federal government gets X percent.
That way the burden of taxes is only on the seller. Income and property (and all other forms of) taxes would go away.
If we wanted to protect our industries, we could still use tariffs for foreign sales, so people wouldn’t be encouraged to just buy foreign.
We’d need a force of people (maybe just use the IRS income tax force) to monitor businesses, and leave it up to individuals to be honest (or audited). The biggest sellers would be easiest to monitor, and would bring in the most tax revenue.
This would encourage saving money because keeping money wouldn’t be taxed. No one would loose their farms or houses from taxes any more. It would encourage bartering (though, if that caught on too much, especially between corporations, maybe bartering would be taxed, too). Giving money would not be taxed because whenever that gift was spent, it would then be taxed.
It would take adjusting to create new routes for money to arrive at the programs currently funded by taxes, but after that was ironed out once, it would be a cleaner, easier to monitor system.