Tax and Defiance – Short Sighted Protester, Joe Stack
NY Daily News: Facebook pulls plug on Tax-icide tribute to Joseph Stack, pilot who crashed plane into Austin office
AND Kamakazi pilot Joe Stack, who crashed plane into Austin building, hailed by anti-government groups
St Petersburg Times: Texas case is extreme example of how Americans hate the IRS
Austin American Statesman: Was attack an act of terrorism, rage or spectacle murder?
Richmark Sentinal: Joe Stack birth of the non-aligned, individual suicide bombers?
LA Times: Man who crashed plane into Austin IRS building part of decades-long line of tax protesters
Joe Stack’s suicide screed chafes and exposes a raw wound this country does not know what to do with.
Anti Defamation League: Tax Protest Movement – Extremism
WIKI: Tax resistance
Rational WIKI: Tax Protestor
Tax protester is a general category to describe anyone who does not believe they are required to pay various taxes. The most commonly disputed tax (in the US) is the income tax. In the United States, tax protesters tend to be largely middle-class conservatives with a libertarian bent. The term “tax protester,” while the preferred nomenclature, is somewhat misleading. In more common parlance they might be called tax deniers. Individuals who protest taxes for one reason or another, while not denying the government’s right to tax, are called tax resisters.
Tax protesters use pseudolaw and follow many of the same methods as creationists and other denialists in advocating their ideas, including: cherry picking data, pseudohistory, quote mining, and deception. There is actually a strong link between tax protesting and creationist movements, as well as the birthers, militia movement and some white supremacy groups. In November 2006 Kent Hovind, an infamous peddler of creationism, was sentenced to 10 years in jail for not paying income tax . Many people have made a lot of money selling various schemes for avoiding having to pay taxes. Thousands of videos, books and conferences are offered every year that promise to cure you of a tax burden for a price. One example is that of Irwin Schiff and his site paynoincometax.com who was sentenced to jail in 2005 for his activities . Not a single argument ever presented by a tax protester has ever been accepted by a court of law as valid.
Tax protesters should be distinguished from tax resisters, who do not deny the government’s right to levy taxes, but refuse to pay as a matter of principle, due to their opposition to specific government policies (opposition to public schooling or defense spending are common tropes). Such protesters are rather less likely to espouse right-libertarian politics; some are, indeed, extreme liberals. Tax resistance is a form of civil disobedience, at least when such people are willing to go to jail for the principle. One example of a tax resister is Henry David Thoreau, who refused to pay his poll tax because it supported the Mexican War, which he considered an immoral land grab.
Taxation in the United States is a complex system which may involve payment to many different levels of government and many methods of taxation. United States taxation includes local government, possibly including one or more of municipal, township, district and county governments. It also includes regional entities such as school and utility, and transit districts as well as including state and federal government.
Yes, the tax system has malfunctioned terribly. Yes, when we vote for congress, our representatives decide how those taxes are spent. No, we don’t always get what we vote for!
How are we supposed to fix that? Not by flying planes into buildings or ambushing federal employees.
Votes are cast for groomed personalities and key words, then those same voters disengage to complain about who they elected. Voters have become irresponsible puppets of marketing campaigns. Marketers decide who to elect and proceed to mesmerize target voting groups. These same marketers, bought and paid for by big business interests, also decide what words their candidate will have to say to get elected by each target group.
Holding elected officials accountable for their promises is the most difficult task to accomplish, why? because the Washington political machine is alien to anything the voter can identify with. Politicians must sell their soul to other politicians and fund raisers to keep promises made to their constituents. There are myriads of theories about how to fix the mess made of an idealistic democracy. But, killing the messenger is not an option. Paying attention to who you elect is the first step to changing the laws IRS must enforce!
The list of things that income tax supports is endless. There are services Americans cannot live without and of course, things most Americans would rather do without. That is where the responsibility of the American steps in. Too many Americans cannot think that far ahead to understand that the services they take for granted are paid for by Income Tax. This big and unwieldy country has myriads of responsibilities for it’s citizens that are very costly. War is one of the more questionable costs, but a secure homeland is unquestionable. Taxes pay for everyday services including :
Corporation for National and Community Service
Department of Agriculture
Department of Commerce
Department of Defense
Department of Education
Department of Energy
Department of Health and Human Services
Department of Homeland Security
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Department of the Interior
Department of Justice
Department of Labor
Social Security Administration
Department of State and Other International Programs
Department of Transportation
Department of Treasury
Department of Veterans Affairs
Environmental Protection Agency
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
National Intelligence Program
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Income Tax is Public money that is managed by our elected politicians, who also design the rules for how to use that money.
The American Voter is where the ultimate responsibility lies. If the American voter cannot recognize they are complicit in creating a monster taxation system, they can throw tantrums but not take lives!
The roots of IRS go back to the Civil War when President Lincoln and Congress, in 1862, created the position of commissioner of Internal Revenue and enacted an income tax to pay war expenses. The income tax was repealed 10 years later. Congress revived the income tax in 1894, but the Supreme Court ruled it unconstitutional the following year.
In 1913, Wyoming ratified the 16th Amendment, providing the three-quarter majority of states necessary to amend the Constitution. The 16th Amendment gave Congress the authority to enact an income tax. That same year, the first Form 1040 appeared after Congress levied a 1 percent tax on net personal incomes above $3,000 with a 6 percent surtax on incomes of more than $500,000.
In 1918, during World War I, the top rate of the income tax rose to 77 percent to help finance the war effort. It dropped sharply in the post-war years, down to 24 percent in 1929, and rose again during the Depression. During World War II, Congress introduced payroll withholding and quarterly tax payments.
- 1913 Form 1040 (PDF 126KB, 4 pages, including instructions)
A New Name
In the 50s, the agency was reorganized to replace a patronage system with career, professional employees. The Bureau of Internal Revenue name was changed to the Internal Revenue Service. Only the IRS commissioner and chief counsel are selected by the president and confirmed by the Senate.