A Case for Secession – Taxation

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We will begin
with the area that was one of the primary motivations for the colonists
to declare their independence from Great Britain – Taxes. Suffice
it so say that the amount of taxes England sought to impose upon
those Americans do not hold a candle to the taxes we already pay
our imperial national government today. All governments require
taxes to perform their functions and we all grudgingly admit the
necessity of paying them. Our government has taken upon itself a
myriad of functions it was never designed to perform and has therefore
required large amounts of money. It is not the purpose of this section
to debate the legitimate functions of government. Instead we will
concern ourselves primarily with the morality and justice of taxing
particular areas of human endeavor and for general purpose those
taxes are utilized.

Thomas Jefferson
stated that “government should not take from the mouth of labor
the bread it has earned.” All governments require money to
operate. Obviously, the smaller the government, the less it will
require. Consider, however, where the government gets this money.
Again, obviously, it taxes its citizens and it is right to do so.
Governments are a form of voluntary organization among free people
to accomplish ends they are not able to do as individuals. Because
these individuals have contracted together in such a fashion, there
is the expectation that they will support their creation. However,
the people retain the rights they received from their creator under
the contract and the government has no right to infringe upon those
rights. When it does, we consider it tyrannical.

Back to taxes.
An individual should be able to provide for his basic necessities
– food, clothing and shelter, without having to pay a fee to
the government to be allowed to do so. If I am not free to purchase
food without paying a tax, I am a mere servant to a government that
will allow me the privilege of eating only if I pay a fee. If I
can live on my property only as long as I continue to pay a tax,
the property is not mine, I merely rent it from the government.
Consider also the exercise of our rights to speech, worship and
protection. If the government taxes and regulates these activities
they are no longer rights but privileges granted by government that
can be limited or revoked at any time.

Let us consider
another area of taxation. An individual should be able to contract
with another for the free exchange of goods and labor. If I exchange
my labor for the goods or the medium of exchange (money) that provide
my basic necessities, the government should not tax that exchange.
We refer to such taxes as income taxes. But our ability to utilize
our labor, physical or intellectual, to provide for our necessities
is a fundamental right. If the government requires a fee for our
labor, working is now a privilege that can only be exercised as
long as the tax is paid. Consider what happens if the tax is not
paid. One ends up in prison and the privilege for gainful employment
is over. The point of all of this is that the government does not
have the right to tax the exercise of our fundamental rights. If
it does we are no longer free people and our rights are no longer
rights but privileges that are dependent upon the whims of those
in power.

There is no
question that government at all levels in these United States believes
it has the right to tax and regulate our rights to life, liberty,
property and even our pursuit of happiness. Let us consider first
what most people think of when they hear the word “tax”
– income tax. Legally or illegally, government at all levels
collects tax on our labor even though that free exchange of labor
for goods should not be subject to a tax. Through intimidation and
perpetuation of misconception, the government has duped us into
willingly complying with its demands. The so-called “tax freedom
day” is now pushing six months. That means we work for the
government six months out of the year. That means that for those
six months we gain no benefit from the fruits of our labor, it goes
to inept politicians and is consumed by a wasteful bureaucracy whose
sole purpose is to find more ways to tax and regulate our lives.
In some states the people still believe that the government does
not have the right to our labor for free and those people should
not be subject to a immoral tax imposed upon them by the national
government.

If the income
tax is immoral on the grounds it violates our fundamental rights,
the Social Security tax is immoral on the same grounds that makes
Bernie Madoff one of the most reviled men in America. Here is another
area where the national government lies to us and perpetuates misconceptions.
The common belief is that we pay into social security and there
is a government account with our name on it where those funds are
accumulating until we retire. Most people know that there is not
actually money in the so-called “trust fund,” it is just
a bunch of government IOUs because the money really went right into
the general fund. The reality is, there was never a trust fund and
social security was not set up to be anything more than a pay-as-you-go
program. People working today have their money confiscated by the
government and it is given to those who are no longer working. Like
a ponzi scheme, it works rather well when lots of people are paying
in a few are taking money out. However, that time is at an end.
Now, instead of a sixteen to one ratio, it will soon be two to one.
It is unsustainable and immoral. It is immoral because the government
has no right to take my money and give it to someone else for any
reason. It is no different than if a thug came and stole my wallet
and gave it to a homeless person. The homeless person may need help
and I may be inclined to give it but is still thievery if a third
party forces me to do so against my will. It is also immoral because
it makes people dependent upon a government that will not be able
to live up to its promises. When those who are nearing retirement
or are recently retired have their benefits cut because there is
no longer enough money coming in, they will find themselves in dire
straights. It is immoral because it destroys the family unit, taking
the responsibility children have for their aging parents and placing
it upon the government. It is immoral because it disincentives personal
responsibility and creates dependency, which is the enemy of liberty.
We should not be forced to be part of a reckless scheme that is
bankrupting the country morally and financially, a scheme that puts
those in the private sector in jail.

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the rest of the article

December
8, 2009

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