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The Optimal Taxation Of Height: A Case Study Of Utilitarian Income Redistribution

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Executive Summary

The standard Utilitarian framework for tax analysis answers this question in the affirmative. This paper can be interpreted in one of two ways. One interpretation is that personal attributes correlated with wages should be considered more widely for determining taxes. Alternatively, if policies such as a height tax are rejected, then the standard Utilitarian framework must fail to capture intuitive notions of distributive justice. Some readers can take it as a small, quirky contribution aimed to clarify the literature on optimal income taxation. Others can take it as a broader effort to challenge that entire literature.

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