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Keep poor folk in mind in tax decisions

IN the last few months of the previous administration, there was a mounting call for tax reform focused on the need for more equitable tax rates. Under current rates which have not been revised since 1997, a rich man whose income is mostly from stock dividends pays 10 percent, while a salaried employee pays 32 percent. The 32 percent tax rate was fixed some two decades ago on the high salaries earned by top executives. Today, because of inflation, this top rate applies to salaries of ordinary employees.

Last June after President Duterte won the election, Archbishop Socrates Villegas, president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP), was confronted by very harsh words for the Church by the new President, who called it a “most hypocritical institution.” Archbishop Socrates chose to invoke “the silence of Jesus before the arrogance of Pilate.”

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