Sunday, December 18, 2022

Dear Civil Servant

I write this letter to you in the hope that you share my vision for a happier and more cooperative world.  You can see that this is my goal at if you're interested in the same thing.  I own that website.

When I filed my first tax return, it seems that I made an "election" as described at 26 CFR 1.6013-6.  I was born in the state of California, and therefore a citizen of the United States of America. I very recently came to understand that, relative to the District of Columbia ("United States" as defined at 26 USC 7701(a)(9)-(10)), I was a non-resident alien individual and not liable for the income tax except in a few cases. I did not understand that I was abandoning that status by filing the form and electing to be treated as a resident of the "United States". My citizenship in the United States of America does NOT make me liable for the income tax.  I have to choose that, and I did, but without being fully informed, and so I feel I have been defrauded.

However, at 26 CFR 1.6013-6(b)4 the Commissioner has the opportunity to correct for the misunderstanding: "An election under this section may be terminated by the Commissioner if it is determined that either spouse has failed to keep adequate records." Your IDR strongly suggests that Congress' intent in that section in the CFR was to address situations just like the one we currently have, so it certainly seems like the right thing to do.  Please let me know if the Commissioner is considering terminating my election for inadequate records as a sign of good faith in our relationship.  If not, then I will follow the instructions in section (b)(1)(iv) to revoke it on my own as 26 USC 6013(g)(4)(A) describes.

Many people feel that if citizens of the fifty states found a way to avoid paying any federal tax, the federal government would be bankrupt and therefore unable to provide whatever services they find valuable.  This is an inordinate amount of pessimism.  People willingly pay for what they want all the time.  If those who did not want federal government services stopped paying, they would end up having more money to pay to those who do, and willingly pay it, and likely more often than once or four times a year. The net result, mainly because everyone would be more respectful of each others' values and choices, but also because the velocity of money would increase, would be positive for everyone.  There would be less control, more freedom, more cooperation, and more joy for nearly everyone.  A few people would suffer from that loss of control but if we consider what kinds of situations give rise to such people, we may find that their decreased means is a welcome change.  In fact, they may also ultimately benefit from a situation that forces them to have more respect for the choices and values of others.

It is my dream to help more people see things as I have described them, and raise the probability of that world coming to be.  That can continue with you just by sharing this letter with other civil servants.  Thank you for letting me share it with you.

Dave Scotese.

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Suffering From Ignorance

So I am facing a painful moral dilemma.  The "easy" way out, because I am confident in my ability to earn money, is to pay the extortionists (the IRS).  The problem is that this choice supports the killing of innocents, and the propagandizing of young people, and the exploitation of a lot of people.  These are all things done by the U.S. government, and outside of the control of the people paying for them, sort of. Nevertheless, I don't see a way out of it.

The founding fathers allowed for a federation of states and a federal government to propose standards and rules for those states so that if they chose to agree with them, the union would work well together.  The federal government would receive land and responsibilities from the states which it could use to raise revenue.  Of course, this makes for a more effective federal government.  Because the Constitution that created it barred direct taxes that were not apportioned and indirect taxes that were not uniform, the federal government was left with the same means of raising revenue that anyone with stuff has: the ability to grant privileges in exchange for revenue.  Thus, the income tax was born, and requires anyone using privilege granted by the federal government to remit a portion of their earnings to that government.:

"The income tax... an excise tax with respect to certain activities and privileges which is measured by reference to the income which they produce. The income is not the subject of the tax; it is the basis for determining the amount of tax."
Former Treasury Department legislative draftsman F. Morse Hubbard in testimony before Congress in 1943

If the federal government does something you don't like, then you can stop using the privilege it granted you (see (b)(1)) and earn your living some other way.  It's an elegant system.

Nowadays, propaganda regularly reinforces the misunderstanding that earning money itself, either through work or by selling something for more than you paid to buy it, is a privilege granted by the federal government, only not using those words.  The words of the propaganda claim that you owe the federal government a cut of any money you make, whether or not you use any privilege from it to do so.  This is all to get you to file your very first tax return, which has ramifications. That has led to a federal government far bigger than necessary or healthy.

To be blunt, my understanding is that our governments often help to create problems because too many people rely on government to solve the problems, and so government (and all the grift and corruption that goes along with it) becomes more desirable and valuable to its victims.  Providing it with the universal reward (money) which it can then use to intensify its efforts, is a recipe for disaster.  I do what I can to avoid pushing it in that direction.

Instead, I do my best to push in the opposite direction.  I encourage people to become less dependent on government, and to avoid paying taxes wherever they can.  This challenges those in the government who really believe in socialism, that all should be equally shared regardless of effort or skill.  I do love sharing, but I recognize that forcing people to share (which is essentially what taxation boils down to) is a horrible thing to do and has the opposite effect from choosing to share.  You can build care and kindness into a relationship by sharing, or you can build resentment and bitterness by forcing others to share.  I'm being forced to share, because I prefer to lose the money rather than ... upset people who love me, cause myself stress and worry by fighting back, and risk imprisonment.