This week's contemplations were sparked by a couple different liberty-oriented newsletters which I read regularly. In one the author says that not paying taxes is downright stupid, no matter the moral or supposedly legal grounds for tax avoidance. In the other newsletter the author points out that the evil of the Federal Reserve isn't that it's private; it's that the Fed has a government-granted monopoly on what is legal tender in the US, i.e. the Fed is a corporatist collusion of private interest with state violence.
Let's start with the taxes. Taxes are a subtle form of slavery. I like to think that if I'd have been a white person in the US during the days of African slavery, I would have vigorously denounced the laws supporting involuntary human bondage as well as the practice of extracting labor from human beings by force. I also like to think that I would have been very active in helping slaves to escape their bondage. Breaking immoral laws is the only moral choice. I like to think that I'm combating the continuing slavery of taxation. At the same time I don't want to go to jail. And the US government is very touchy both about the serfs not paying taxes and encouraging other serfs not to pay taxes. So let me just point out the following…
The taxes you pay do not buy the services you think they buy. They don't finance the infrastructure as the government apologists claim. They don't even pay for the wars and welfare that libertarians despise. The federal government spends many times the income it receives in taxes each year on mass murder, social meddling and engineering, and the socialist roads and other public works. So how do they pay for all that stuff? They simply borrow it. They borrow the money from other countries, from their own citizens and from the Federal Reserve. The tax money the federal government steals from its citizen cows just about covers the interest on the all the borrowed money that actually fuels the government's spending.
It's amazing that the US has been allowed to keep on borrowing more and more for this long. I'd be less surprised at creditors lending more money to a man who earns $40,000 per year who is on the hook for $4 million while needing $400,000 per year to maintain his lifestyle. At some point the only entity willing to lend to the federal government will be the US central bank, the Federal Reserve. This brings me to the other point I mentioned at the beginning. The Federal Reserve is indeed a private consortium of banks whom the government gives monopoly on what's legally recognized as money (i.e. the Federal Reserve is not really "federal" or a "reserve" but a goverment-licensed monopolist money creator). The Federal Reserve collects interest on the money it creates and lends to the federal government. A few hard money advocates point out that it's in the interest of this private, government-enabled cartel to keep the dollar game going. After all, the dollar is this private company's "product" and they want to make sure there's still a demand for it.
It's in the politicians' interest, however, to debase the currency endlessly to fund the wars and welfare that taxes simply cannot cover. At some point I wonder if Congress won't simply nationalize the Federal Reserve and erase the government's obligations to the Fed while creating new money to pay off the other creditors, including foreign nations and Americans who own Treasuries. It would be a return to the system that allowed the Continental and the Greenback. That is to say it would be a system that allowed for complete debasement of the legally-backed currency. The government could do away with the complication of a private central bank. It could simply say, "We have the guns so instead of using those guns to enforce your monopoly, we'll just take over your monopoly."
Or the Federal Reserve could simply play ball without being officially nationalized. The central bank could simply erase the Treasuries on its balance sheet and create new money to monetize the debts the government owes to other entities.
Either way, to answer the question: "Why do we pay taxes when the government just borrows and the Fed just prints?" It's a matter of psychology. The income tax and the IRS are psychological tools to make control of the sheep easier, to keep them as productive as possible while voluntarily letting their masters use them as collateral. Tax collection doesn't actually fund anything. It just reminds the populace that the they don't really own anything, especially not the fruits of their labor. The government, at least in the US (numerous other more civilized places they don't have exortion, i.e. income tax) allows them to keep a portion of their income. Enough to keep them productive, but not enough to allow most of them to accumulate meaningful wealth (the kind of capital accumulation that actual free market capitalism requires to provide everything better than the state could). It's just enough to keep them working hard yet remain docile.
It turns out that slaves are far more productive when they think they are free. Allow them to keep a certain amount of the wealth they create, and they will let the illusion of freedom envelope them. The US government is the most successful parasite in history for this reason. It had the good fortune to be attached to the freest, most productive society ever, the one that came closer than any other to the anarchist, capitalist ideal. The US government parasite got it figured out pretty quickly: Hide the ownership in taxes and the owned will happily work themselves till death while the owner reaps the benefits. The productivity of its citizen cows is the collateral against which the US government then borrows. Taxation is a much gentler manifestation of the master's whip. But even though it's a milder form of slavery with the threat of kidnapping at gunpoint as opposed to casual, punctuated violence, it's still slavery.
It may be "stupid" not to pay into this odious immorality, but we should never stop detesting it and working toward a world without it.
Editor, The Dollar Vigilante
P.S. Just like the best way for a black slave to become free in the US was to get the hell out of slave territory via the Underground Railroad, the best way to get away from the reach of the US tax authorities (or Canadian…or French…or Chinese…or any number of thieving nations) and its taxation on worldwide income of its citizens is to get the hell away and switch membership to a friendlier tax jurisdiction. Did you know that as a citizen of either the Dominican Republic or Paraguay, you don't have to pay income tax on income earned outside of the country? Those are just two or the citizenships and passports TDV offers. Learn more here.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
Menno Troyer considers the varied definitions of freedom, and the importance in distinguishing between them.
“The fact is, freedom is NOT a condition of "society". "Public freedom" is every bit as absurd as "public rights" and "public property". There exists only one kind of freedom: Freedom of the individual. Think about it: To the extent that you – the individual – are free, you have freedom regardless of the rest of the individuals in society, or the world. Yes, freedom is always and everywhere an individual phenomenon, regardless of how many individuals in a given society enjoy it.”
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 11
In California, getting a driver’s license isn’t about the freedom of being allowed to drive, but rather the invasion of your freedoms. Slavey fills us in on how to best avoid the long arm of the intrusive state.
“All I have to say about this is make sure you’re using a PO Box as your home address (not a USPS government mailbox – a box at one of those neighborhood businesses with “PMB” mailboxes). One of the main steps on the road to de-slaving yourself is to make sure the authorities don’t know where you live. NEVER give out your home address to anyone but trusted friends and family if you can help it. Utilities end up getting it, but anyone else providing services to your home doesn’t need it.”
WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 12
Jim Karger, always provocative, confrontational, and fearless in his posts, takes a quiet moment to consider what led to his departure, his escape, his freedom from the USSA, and how his move to San Miguel de Allende has changed his life for the better.
“The important lesson for me was that while life can never be a permanent vacation, for the same reason nothing else can be permanent, it doesn't have to be spent grinding out one day after another doing something you find other than exciting and meaningful. The difficult task is not in learning to do something well, but in discovering what that something is. It may not even be one thing, but a collection of avocations that that bring one into the present, neither lamenting the past or fearing the future.”
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 13
Jeff Berwick on the latest turns in the tragedy that is the reign of Fed king Ben Bernanke.
“Yes, this is what Ben Shalom Bernanke believes and so today he walked up to the microphone and announced that he will print up new money and buy $40 billion worth of mortgage backed securities for as long as it takes to get the unemployment rate down to 7%! Considering that the true unemployment rate (not the government hedonistically adjusted propaganda numbers) is closer to 23%, he's really got his work cut out for him! Especially because the biggest obstacle to a true reduction in real unemployment is Ben Bernanke's QE3 itself.
"That's because printing up endless amounts of fiat currency units only has one real outcome… and that is the destruction of the economy as consumers, business people and entrepreneurs are all given false price signals caused by the onslaught of untraceable new money, and they therefore cannot make economic calculations to give the market what it wants properly. This is what caused the tech bubble… this is what caused the housing bubble… and this is what is likely going to cause the gold and gold stock bubble.”
FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 14
In this week’s Feedback, questions and concerns about creating oneself a self-sustainable property, and, alas, another sad tale of TSA adventures. As Jeff Berwick responds, we live in a world “where some bottom-dwelling 20-year-old kid or housewife with many more pounds of butt fat than IQ points who found their job from an advertisement on a pizza box can put on a blue uniform, write a letter on your passport and ruin your day and maybe even ruin your life.”
SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 15
The Weekend Vigilante tackles a wide array of topics, including Jeff and Gary’s opposing affections for their homelands, self-sustaining communities, and the ever-changing face of humanity. We may be closer to anarchy than you think.
Be sure to check out last week’s featured videos if you haven’t already, including Episode 40 of The Anarchast with Karl Molinet featuring TDV’s own Jeff Berwick, and Jeff’s presentation at Porcfest about living free outside of the USSA.
Don't forget, TDV is much more than a newsletter. We also offer many of the solutions to the problems we identify in the letter to help people internationalize themselves and their wealth as protection against The End Of The Monetary System As We Know It (TEOTMSAWKI). Check out all our services designed to help you gain more freedom in your life here:
This is an exciting time in our world and yours, and we are so pleased that you all keep returning to our community to join the discourse, and continue the fight for more choice, more freedom, and more life.
Thanks as always for reading or subscribing!