Look At Hidden Taxes, Not Just Hidden Fees
By Gary M. Galles
Joe Biden talked about how he was working to protect Americans against hidden junk fees in his State of the Union address. Now he has called, as a White House press release put it, “for all agencies to reduce or eliminate hidden fees, charges and add-ons” that might “confuse or deceive” us in many markets. Similarly, in California, “A bevy of new legislation takes aim at hidden fees across several industries.”
What is proposed so closely parallels a 2017 report from President Barack Obama’s National Economic Council that it makes me ask why the problem is still around six years later if solving it is so crucially important. But even more important is to ask why there is so much rhetorical emphasis on keeping Americans from being fooled and harmed by hidden fees in markets, but none given to by far the greatest source of such abuses of Americans — government itself, via hidden taxes.