I've been sleep deprived for a couple weeks now, and some of this may not be thought out that well. Given that the USA will be over $8 trillion in debt soon (discussed here), I think that many of us can agree that there needs to be an increase in government revenue. As much as any administration promises, I don't believe that any administration has managed to shrink the federal government (please correct me if I'm wrong). One thought that was actually brought up by some co-workers and friends at lunch one day would be to implement a "War Tax" to finance the operations in Iraq. Two benefits that I can see are the fact that wars would no longer be a drain on the federal government allowing us to reduce deficits. It would also help to show taxpayers the monetary costs of war. It may seem cold, and I really hate to say it, but there are many people who don't have any friends or relatives in the military and since taxes have actually been cut it seems as though the war is more or less free since it has very little direct impact on their daily lives. (Please do not read this wrong it is not my intention to offend anyone) Why couldn't such a system be applied to the rest of our taxes? My suggestion would be to set up our current tax system into two categories (there would be more but Social Security and Medicare are already pulled out of our checks). The two categories would be Operational Costs and Debt Payments. This would in effect create four "pockets" that our taxes go into. In order for this to work we would have to have true isolation between the pockets, a deficit in one pocket would result in increases for the next year to cover the difference, and a surplus would result in a reduction. As an added informative feature the budget information should be available via a website with the url on your tax return so when you look at your return and see $x,xxx.xx for any given pocket you can go and see where the money goes (this might create some better informed tax payers which could truly result in smaller government over time as unnecessary programs are questioned by more and more voters). Of course this would also require some sort of balanced budget stipulation to require deficits to be funded in the next fiscal year. It would also be nice if it would cause the government to be more forthright about how much any given bill will really cost, i.e. bill h.r. 2021 to keep courts from hearing "under God" Pledge of Allegiance cases would raise your Operational Cost taxes by $xxx.xx per year. Feel free to call me an idiot and show me why this wouldn't work but I think it could be a beneficial reform that might actually result in better informed voters as people truly start to look at where their tax dollars end up going. I realize that all of the information is available somewhere but it is not the easiest to find and of course the search will discourage a lot of people. By making it available on your tax return I think people would be more willing to look at the information when they look at their bill and wonder where their money went. I also believe that with the debt and wars broken out into separate categories more people might be willing to suffer tax hikes in order to reduce the debt, assure that our troops are well equipped, and be successful in our military endeavors. Edit : In my rambling I completely neglected the purpose for this thread. I wanted to see what kind of ideas other members have for tax reform and of course given the nature of the forum the debate on why particular ideas will/won't work.