Couldn't we do this with a 1% tax on the whole population?
Sure and in ten years it'll be a 10% tax on everyone. When income tax was invented, it was a 1% tax on the very wealthiest, now it's a 25-40% on the middle class. When sales tax was started in my state (1965! How on earth did the government manage to function before that??), it was 1%, today it's 8% in most places. Give the government an inch of taxation, they'll nickel and dime it up a mile.