Wednesday, February 15, 2006

1913: a year that will live in infamy (part 1)

Thomas Jefferson once concluded about destiny: "The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield and government to gain ground." When we trace the course of our country from beginning until now, and along the way, as the people lose our freedoms and liberties as time goes by, Jefferson had it exactly on the money! As we travel through time and lose our liberties along the way, like Abraham Lincoln suspending habeas corpus, printing fiat paper money, taxing incomes, and many other unconstitutional powers in order to "preserve the union" (contrary to what you may believe, Lincoln was really America's first tyrant), FDR putting the power of government on otherwise private enterprise during his "New Deal" socialist programs, and all the way to George W. Bush infringing on our rights to combat his never-ending "War on Terror", the infamous year of all was 1913. 1913 was the year that dramatically changed the way the people saw our government, and our government saw the people. Two terrible things happened in 1913: the (supposedly) ratification of the 16th Amendment and the passage of the Federal Reserve Act. Now, the Federal Reserve Act is for a later topic, so let's study the federal income tax.

Since the birth of our country in 1776 to 1913, American didn't have a federal income tax. That means, Americans were free to accumulate unlimited amounts of wealth without being forced to give any of it to the government. Americans believe they had a natural, God-given, inalienable right to choose what they want to with their wealth: spend it, save it, invest it, hoard it, give it away, or even destroy it. That is what it means to be an American. That is what it means to be free. That is what it means when Americans celebrate on Independence Day.

They could live their lives in whatever manner they choose, engage with others voluntary in economic transactions, and accumulate the fruits of their earnings, without government approval or assistance. Americans knew from history the perils of direct taxation and what it does to individual liberty. Before 1913, Americans forbade the practice. In other words, the American individual was sovereign. The American individual was supreme. The American individual works for himself and his family, not for the government. The American individual was boss, and the government was the servant.


But, in 1913, all of that changed. When the 16th Amendment was (supposedly) ratified, the roles switched between the American people and the American government. Now, the government was the master and the people was the serf. The 16th Amendment (supposedly) permitted the national government to impose income taxation on the American people. If the government is kind, it will take less. If it is mean, it will take more. But, there is no mistake about it: the government is now in control. And the servants obey, because that's what servants do.

Another reason of the 16th Amendment is the perverted way we view our government. Before 1913, the people depend on each individual selves. If person A was envious of person B, all A can do is work a little harder, and the government should get out of the way for person A to accomplish it, the way God intended it. If A truly needed help, there are many people out there who will lend a hand when someone is in trouble. But, because of the federal income tax, the government is our god; the government is our daddy; the government wants to take care of us from womb to tomb. If person A was envious of person B, now A goes to the government, and the government taxes B and gives the money to A. How immoral is that? Taxation is legalized theft, and legalized theft is theft, pure and simple. It violates God's Eighth Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Steal. And person A violates God's Tenth Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Covet. And (it gets worse), the progressive income tax (supposedly) the 16th Amendment imposed on us is the 2nd plank of the ten planks of Karl Marx' Communist Manifesto.

The irony in this is we pride ourselves in being a "nation of God-fearing Christians", as we tithe (10%) to God, while we tax 50% to Caesar (government). The amusing thing is how these Christians never tire of telling us how the Lord is the most important thing in their lives!

As the astute readers may wonder why I phrase "supposedly" in parenthesis. There are two reasons why. First, some people (including me) think the 16th Amendment was never ratified. Bill Benson, a former Illinois Department of Revenue investigator, began a research project of the ratification of the 16th Amendment in 1984. He found out that many states didn't ratify that amendment, as erroneously reported by then Secretary of State Philander Knox. Benson subsequently publish a two-volume book called The Law That Never Was.

Second, even if this amendment was ratified properly, many people get confused on what the 16th Amendment actually means. The 16th Amendment in full reads, "The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration." The "official meaning" (offered by the government) is the 16th Amendment gives Congress the ability to directly tax incomes without apportionment. The word "directly" magically appears out of nowhere! Some alert readers (like me) said the 16th Amendment means nothing. The only reason the 16th Amendment is in there is to clarify that the income tax was always an indirect tax which didn't need to be apportioned. In Gould v. Gould, the Supreme Court said, "In case of doubt [on taxes], they are construed most strongly against the government, and in favor of the citizen." In other words, my definition trumps the government's definition.

My definition is not my definition alone. In two cases, the Supreme Court agrees with my definition (Brushaber v. Union Pacific and Stanton v. Baltic Mining). Even the Secretary of the Treasury agrees with my definition (Treasury Decision 2303; scroll down to the first block quotation). As more and more people start to find out about the evil attempt of the IRS to defraud the people out of there hard-earned money, I predict the IRS as we know it will soon be abolished by these same people. When that happens, death will be the only certainty in our lives.

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