From today's "The Writer's Almanac" by Garrison Keillor:
"Today is traditionally known as "Tax Day," the deadline for Americans to file their annual income tax returns. The federal income tax has been in effect since Congress ratified the 16th Amendment in 1913, which states: "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." That first year, the form was only two pages long. If the deadline has snuck up on you, don't despair: you still have a couple more days. Tax returns aren't due until April 18th this year, because the 15th falls on a Saturday, and Monday the 17th is a holiday - Emancipation Day - in Washington, D.C. If you live in Maine and Massachusetts, you get an additional day due to the observation of Patriots Day. Your taxes aren't due until Wednesday, April 19."
We all (or most of us) have seen the stickers declaring "Repeal The 18th Amendment" to eliminate Prohibition. Is it time to produce stickers imploring a repeal of the 16th Amendment? I know, I know; how would we fund this, that, and the other thing? It might be fun though.
In the little country we retired to there are no personal income taxes. Everyone pays a 12% IVA on their purchases and it seems to work. Businesses do pay taxes on their incomes however. When we lived in New Hampshire (till 04) property taxes alone were hell to deal with. Small 2-2 on a city lot the taxes in 04 were nearly $4K !! Repeal the 16th amendment
I know two people, and I understand there are many more, who have for years refused to file or pay Federal income tax. I've forgotten some of the details of their argument, but it goes something like this:
The 16th amendment was signed into law by President (forgotten detail). This President was born in (forgotten State name). Through an oversight, this State was not formally admitted to the Union until some time in the '40's or '50's. Therefore, the President who signed the amendment was not born in the United States, and was not legitimately President, and the 16th amendment is not legitimate. Therefore, the Government has no legitimate authority to collect the taxes.
A few minutes on Google can probably fill in the blanks I've forgotten.
One of the dads in my son's Boy Scout troop was one of those folks who often repeated things like that Peter. And, he didn't pay income taxes for several years.
Then, he spent 6 months in a Federal prison in Michigan.
He pays his taxes now.
(Message edited by rustyfords on April 15, 2017)
Peter, that sounds like being on a tour, miles away from the nearest town with only one gallon of gas left in the tank, and no spare supply. One knows that "the Piper must be paid", only question is when.
The suspense of judgement day would ruin retirement for me!
One way or another they're going to get the money from you. One of the real crimes with the whole thing now is that it is so complicated that if you have anything more than a standard W-2 job, you just about have no other choice than to pay someone with advanced training to do your taxes for you. No citizen with a reasonable i.q should have to pay somebody else to calculate their obligation to the government simply because the people that write the laws decided they can endlessly butcher the tax code in order to manipulate society and buy votes for themselves by rearranging the furniture to pick the winners and losers.
Many countries (but not all) have an income tax. Of those countries the USA is The Only One in which there are paid tax preparers. We have a full time industry of tax assistants: H&R Block and the rest.
Our tax rules have become so unwieldy that many of us can no longer understand them and do need to seek help to file our taxes. Many folks feel that there is a crying need for tax law simplification and that it all should be easier to grasp, like tithing at church: 10%, done.
Canada also has paid tax preparers (H&R Block included).
The original income tax was adopted by Abraham Lincoln on August 5,1861 to help pay for the Civil War. It was later repealed in 1872.
Agreed, and let's not leave out the tax software companies that market a product as though it is the answer to simplified tax filing while at the same time have actively lobbied against simplification efforts. They're effectively using profits created by their customers to oppose what is in the best interest of their customers. The whole tax complexity lobby operates on this basis.
From taxes to insurance and beyond, as a country, we're bogged down by the administration class that is driving overhead through the roof. It's a recipe for disaster.
Oh, OK. This is not the first time that I have been wrong and, sadly, probably not the last. Bill