[LETTERS] Capital gains tax break unfairRegarding “Good riddance to unfair tax” [Editorial, March 17]: There is no doubt that some changes need to be made to overcome Korea’s economic crisis. However, I wonder if the recent tax cut for multiple-home owners is really good for most individuals and for our economy.
Recent radical changes in the tax system are only for the wealthy, not for the common people. Just like before the Roh Moo-hyun administration, the wealthy are going to start buying houses again not to live there, but to earn money. On the other hand, the average citizen cannot even imagine buying one comfortable place to live without worries of frequent moving due to skyrocketing housing values. These escalating values are caused by lowering taxes on capital gains from selling multiple houses.
Another more serious side effect is the high possibility of worsening budgets. Today, as the economy staggers, policy makers are proposing a revised supplementary budget at a level without parallel in history to enliven our economy.
The government cannot generate enough money to make up for the expanded spending by cutting capital gains tax for owners of multiple homes. Worse, lately I have seen more police crackdowns than ever on relatively trivial infractions such as illegal parking or jaywalking. This is totally targeting the average citizen rather than the wealthy. This also means the government is trying to make up for a lot of taxes that the wealthy could have paid on their capital gains. This is not a reasonable alternative.
This radical movement has created many side effects. The Lee government’s recent tax cuts are imposing the same tax rate on those who own only one house and those who own several. This is unfair from the point of view of ordinary people. Even though it is called a “tool” to revitalize our economy, it cannot be welcomed if [the property tax] isn’t changed step-by-step by seeking public opinion and considering public sentiment.
Yuk Seung-hee, teacher