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Abstract

The Revenue Act of 1942 marks important changes in the substantive law. Most of these changes have been obscured by the publicity accorded the higher rates and other features that distinguish it as the first great taxing measure borne out of the travail of the present conflict. Yet it is remarkable that despite the urgency of the need for war revenues, time and effort should have been expended by Congressional committees and Treasury officials in working out with care and thought revisions that constitute a notable contribution to the clarification and restatement of the substantive law of federal taxation. Important segments of the Internal Revenue Code have been repaired, overhauled and serviced. Moreover, not all the changes are directed toward the tightening of the tax statutes and the further closing of loopholes. To be sure, some of the revisions are explained by such a purpose. But others are designed to clarify and still others to redress elements of unfairness and injustice in the earlier law. Many of the changes have long been needed, and it is anomalous that we should have waited to attend to them until caught in the war's vortex.

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