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.

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