Tax rates in the U.S. were much higher in the 1940s and 1950s, but it didn’t result in the government collecting more tax revenue as a % of GDP. The tax code isn’t 60,000 pages because the corrupt politicians want to collect more taxes. It is 60,000 pages because our politicians have been bought off by special interests to give them tax breaks. The tax code will never be simplified because politicians would lose power. No matter what happens, the government will never collect tax receipts much more than 20% of GDP.
“No matter what the tax rates have been, in postwar America tax revenues have remained at about 19.5% of GDP.” – William Kurt Hauser