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Why aren't taxes theft?

Freedomaniac
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11/28/2009 12:31:33 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Now this may just be my completely insane Libertarian Extremism talking but..I think they are.

You say the government need money to work?

Yes, of coarse it does.

But have you been so indoctrinated by society that you naturally come to the conclusion that such money must be forcibly taken?

Yes, you have.

Now that you ponder are you considering the likelihood of me being in the right?

But yet holding your ground because of coarse you KNOW there is no other alternative?

Well, there is.

You need incentive.

Incentive for what?

For willingly donating to the government.

Willingly donating to the government! That's preposterous! No one in there right mind would do that!

Unless there was incentive.

Ok, fine, what incentive?

Order.

Huh?

Let me explain. Imagine no large federal government, only very many, very small local governments. And on this local level is where taxes are both collected and spent. Your government needs the money to keep you safe from both domestic and foreign threats. If you give the money, those things are provided for and you directly see the effects of your contribution due to the size of the nation. If you do not provide money for the services your nation will soon be viciously ravenged apart from all angles. Sound like an incentive to you?

Uuuuuuh..well...

What say you?!
I am a moosepotomus, here me quack! *Grr, ruff, moo*

I am my own God and the free market is my Jesus.

http://freedomaniac.wordpress.com...
comoncents
Posts: 5,647
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11/28/2009 12:51:12 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
constitution of the United States clearly allows taxation. Article I, Section 8, states:
"The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States."
And the 16th Amendment 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."
Danielle
Posts: 21,330
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11/28/2009 1:08:05 AM
Posted: 7 years ago

Let me explain. Imagine no large federal government, only very many, very small local governments. And on this local level is where taxes are both collected and spent. Your government needs the money to keep you safe from both domestic and foreign threats. If you give the money, those things are provided for and you directly see the effects of your contribution due to the size of the nation. If you do not provide money for the services your nation will soon be viciously ravenged apart from all angles. Sound like an incentive to you?

Uuuuuuh..well...

What say you?!

Let's be clear that you are one of many over-represented Libertarians on this site (I used to be one of them) so this is obviously nothing new. That said, welcome to DDO and kudos on your first forum topic post :) As far as what say I...

You lost me completely as far as what happens if we choose not to pay taxes (We're ravenged apart from all angles? What?). If you're implying that we can either choose to pay taxes or suffer the consequences, then that is no different than the system we have now, correct? So I'm assuming that what you're advocating for are no taxes and small government. I'm okay with small government, but no taxes? Nah. You need taxes not only for public roads but for law enforcement and the judicial system and process in general.

As far as taxes being theft, how so? Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes, therefore you're choosing to pay or not pay them. Our resident Objectivist (Ragnar) says that unless someone is physically forcing you to do something, then you're choosing to go along with that standard. Don't like it? Change the law. Can't change the law? Deal with it. There are plenty of laws that I'd like to change and can't. Keep trying - that's all we can do.

So back to taxes. Well, 54% of our federal taxes are spent on the military [http://www.warresisters.org...] and I doubt a local militia would be able to protect you or prepare you for terrorist attacks, nuclear war, etc. Therefore if you're implying that we should have small local armies to protect us then you're being very unrealistic and entirely insufficient in terms of adequate protection.

Moving on, they say 5% goes to physical resources... whatever that is (environment stuff?) I do think that we can do without most of the 30% being spent on HR though except for social security and the FDA. Also I don't think politicians should be paid, so the 11% general government expenses should be cut down too... but keep in mind these things go to paying for stuff like the FBI, CIA, Secret Service, etc.

So basically, before I continue, you should probably explain yourself further, Freedomaniac, and maybe we can even debate about something :)
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comoncents
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11/28/2009 1:10:02 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 12:51:12 AM, comoncents wrote:
constitution of the United States clearly allows taxation. Article I, Section 8, states:
"The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes, duties, imposts and excises, to pay the debts and provide for the common defense and general welfare of the United States."
And the 16th Amendment 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."

The Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution was not properly ratified or it is unconstitutional generally, or that being forced to file an income tax return violates the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination.
I like having a state tax and not income tax.
Danielle
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11/28/2009 1:25:56 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 1:19:58 AM, comoncents wrote:
I say we have state taxes and abolish individual federal income tax.

If that happened, then you wouldn't receive any money from your work in the military.
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comoncents
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11/28/2009 1:27:28 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 1:25:56 AM, theLwerd wrote:
At 11/28/2009 1:19:58 AM, comoncents wrote:
I say we have state taxes and abolish individual federal income tax.

If that happened, then you wouldn't receive any money from your work in the military.

The revenue collected by the IRS on individual wages doesn't pay $1 of the expense of running the federal government (military). Federal income tax does not pay for the fbi, cia etc, those are all paid out of the defense budget.

Roads and transit systems are paid for by tax on gasoline and excise taxes on imports and exports.
Schools, fire depts and police are paid for by state level property taxes and sales and excise taxes.

Your federal income tax pays the interest on the federal reserve and funds the IRS.

Thats what i thought, i maybe wrong, let me check.
Freedomaniac
Posts: 365
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11/28/2009 1:59:47 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
To comoncents:

Uum, what the constitution says is of no relevance to this argument.

I'm not saying if it's legal. I'm saying it's right.
I am a moosepotomus, here me quack! *Grr, ruff, moo*

I am my own God and the free market is my Jesus.

http://freedomaniac.wordpress.com...
comoncents
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11/28/2009 2:12:32 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 1:59:47 AM, Freedomaniac wrote:
To comoncents:

Uum, what the constitution says is of no relevance to this argument.

I'm not saying if it's legal. I'm saying it's right.

Gotcha, but i think i answered a solution in getting rid of individual fed income tax.

Still, theft implies a breaking of the law.
Therefore my original statement is true and relevant.
comoncents
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11/28/2009 2:20:46 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 1:59:47 AM, Freedomaniac wrote:
To comoncents:

Uum, what the constitution says is of no relevance to this argument.

I'm not saying if it's legal. I'm saying it's right.

No need to be a cocky saint of a blotch, theft implies a breaking of the law.
Therefore my original statement is true and relevant.
And you are wrong in your cocky statement.

Incase you forgot what you wrote, it is above your opening statement.
Still need further help. Here is what you said,

"Why aren't taxes theft?"

Therefore my original statement is true and relevant.
mattrodstrom
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11/28/2009 7:01:17 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
I think something like a sales tax is fairly non-coercive, you can choose to buy, or not.

I can see something like an income tax being coercive in that if you choose not to pay not only will the government do its best to get your money any way it can but it will also likely throw you in jail.

Ideally I'd like to see the sales tax replace the income tax though I'm not too sure it's the most feasible means of taking peoples money : ), and if not I guess not completely.

I'd like to see all the stupid write-offs (expenses and charities) and loopholes to the system we do have closed, this way the system in general can be scaled back a bit, to where we can see what we can do with it.
"He who does not know how to put his will into things at least puts a meaning into them: that is, he believes there is a will in them already."

Metaphysics:
"The science.. which deals with the fundamental errors of mankind - but as if they were the fundamental truths."
Chrysippus
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11/28/2009 8:14:08 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 12:31:33 AM, Freedomaniac wrote:
Now this may just be my completely insane Libertarian Extremism talking but..I think they are.

You say the government need money to work?


No; force the bureaucrats to work for free, preferably at gunpoint. :P

But have you been so indoctrinated by society that you naturally come to the conclusion that such money must be forcibly taken?


No. But the only times in all of history that non-coercive methods of supporting the government worked was with small independent groups of people (city-states) or Theocracies. Neither one are acceptable options for America...

Now that you ponder are you considering the likelihood of me being in the right?

But yet holding your ground because of coarse you KNOW there is no other alternative?

Well, there is.


Well, of course! There are always alternatives. Whether people choose to even consider them is another matter.

A brief list of alternatives to involuntary taxation:
1) No government, and therefore no taxes. Only works for a little while, history tells us.

2) Mind-control government. It's not involuntary if you WANT to pay taxes :P
2b) Theocracy. The gods told you to pay taxes, not the government. The feds can only put you in jail; Osirus can strip your soul away and use it for carpet.

3) Sacrifice the rich. A short purge, and their wealth supports the government for awhile. Not a permanent solution, and you tend to lose some of your brightest minds this way; just ask the Nazis.

4) Plunder everyone. Worked for the Vikings, for a couple of generations. They still have a bad name, though; this route ruins your reputation.

5) Die. Volia, no more taxes.

For you, at least. Government still taxes your survivors, your property, and your cold dead corpse.

There is a sixth option.

6) Kill everyone. No people, no government, no taxes.

I doubt I need to point out the problem with that line of thinking.

Still, these are all possible alternatives to forced taxation. The question: is the cure worse that the sickness?

You need incentive.


OK; Incentive for what?


For willingly donating to the government.


Problem is, I'd be one of only a few that would donate freely. Far too easy just to let other people pay.


Unless there was incentive.


Yes, yes; we know.


Order.


Oops. Wrong word.

You see, people only want other people to be kept in line. We chafe against the restrictions on our own actions; but when someone else is cutting loose we say, "There ought to be a law..."

Order means restrictions. Most people don't want there to be an increase of order as far as regards themselves; why would they pay willingly to have people tell them what not to do?


Let me explain. Imagine no large federal government, only very many, very small local governments. And on this local level is where taxes are both collected and spent. Your government needs the money to keep you safe from both domestic and foreign threats. If you give the money, those things are provided for and you directly see the effects of your contribution due to the size of the nation. If you do not provide money for the services your nation will soon be viciously ravenged apart from all angles. Sound like an incentive to you?


I'm imagining...

Sounds like this: No large federal government = nothing to hold all those tiny little governments together = chaos. Lots of fracturing; internecine strife; no big brother to arbitrate.

One of two things happen:
(1) USA permanently divides into thousands of city-states, possibly grouped into a few large weak confederations or alliances. In order to protect themselves from the immediate attempts at "annexation," taxes would become involuntary again "just for the duration of the war."

(2) The federal government is re-instated, as people found living without the federal programs and the security of the armed forces to be intolerable.

This isn't 1600's Switzerland, old boy; there are far too many people for your suggestion to be practical.
Cavete mea inexorabilis legiones mimus!
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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11/28/2009 11:10:52 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
As a libertarian against taxes, I find your plan impractical, Freedomaniac. Defense has huge economies of scale, and local governments historically tend to hate your freedom more than federal ones other things equal. Basically, if we implement it

A. You still have a free rider problem, just not as big.
and
B. Your local gunmint gets conquered by some country that didn't implement it.

Somehow, I think my usual plan of a government that provides next to no services to nonpayers (i.e. no response to 911 calls, no little signs on your house that say your 911 calls get responded to, and no it won't help you if your neighbors say it's your home being invaded, or if your neighbors lie and it shows up at the scene in which case it fines your neighbors..., no enforcement of contracts or other ability to engage in a civil suit... You get the idea and what naturally happens and what criminals are likely to do) is far more effective. National defense, paid for out of the law enforcement user fee, along with maybe enforcement of an anti-slavery law, are the "free samples" that will show people it is worthwhile to pay for the rest of government, and are pretty worthless unless you pay the government to prevent your neighbor from murdering you without consequence. This plan-- unlike yours-- allows a government to preserve sufficient scale to actually be able to engage in national defense, without the evils of the government coercing people to pay, as long as it punishes as fraud against it any attempt to fake proof of having purchased protection.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Ragnar_Rahl
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11/28/2009 11:15:25 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes,
Actually, this isn't true. If, in fact, you fail to pay taxes, and the government catches wind of this-- the government sends men with guns, who will shoot if you attempt to resist them physically forcing you into handcuffs and into a courtroom. There may occasionally be a few more steps in between-- but this is always the endgame if you don't surrender to those steps.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:19:27 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:15:25 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes,
Actually, this isn't true. If, in fact, you fail to pay taxes, and the government catches wind of this-- the government sends men with guns, who will shoot if you attempt to resist them physically forcing you into handcuffs and into a courtroom. There may occasionally be a few more steps in between-- but this is always the endgame if you don't surrender to those steps.

So they shoot at you for attempting to resist arrest. Not failure to pay taxes.
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Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:20:25 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Also they can't shoot you only for resisting arrest. It'd have to be for you taking measures of violence against them. Incidentally, anybody can shoot you (legally) for that.
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Ragnar_Rahl
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11/28/2009 11:20:47 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:19:27 AM, theLwerd wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:15:25 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes,
Actually, this isn't true. If, in fact, you fail to pay taxes, and the government catches wind of this-- the government sends men with guns, who will shoot if you attempt to resist them physically forcing you into handcuffs and into a courtroom. There may occasionally be a few more steps in between-- but this is always the endgame if you don't surrender to those steps.

So they shoot at you for attempting to resist arrest. Not failure to pay taxes.
They take you to jail for failure to pay taxes. Kidnapping is not morally superior to murder.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Ragnar_Rahl
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11/28/2009 11:23:37 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:20:25 AM, theLwerd wrote:
Also they can't shoot you only for resisting arrest. It'd have to be for you taking measures of violence against them. Incidentally, anybody can shoot you (legally) for that.

No, only the government can shoot you for violently defending yourself against violence (Which, make no mistake, forcing someone to the ground, putting tight metal cuffs on their wrists, and confining them, is a violent act, which one can legally resist anytime someone other than an agent of the government attempts it without personally observing you doing something else violent first).
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:29:51 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:20:47 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:19:27 AM, theLwerd wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:15:25 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes,
Actually, this isn't true. If, in fact, you fail to pay taxes, and the government catches wind of this-- the government sends men with guns, who will shoot if you attempt to resist them physically forcing you into handcuffs and into a courtroom. There may occasionally be a few more steps in between-- but this is always the endgame if you don't surrender to those steps.

So they shoot at you for attempting to resist arrest. Not failure to pay taxes.
They take you to jail for failure to pay taxes. Kidnapping is not morally superior to murder.

Arresting isn't kidnapping if it's within the parameters of the law. And kidnapping is not morally superior to murder? Interesting. I'll debate you on that too :)
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Cody_Franklin
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11/28/2009 11:30:05 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Letting criminals have free reign over the people who don't pay "user fees" is hardly any better than allowing the government to have at those who don't pay taxes. An actual government would have the power to act to get rid of the "undesirables", whereas your protection racket would just ignore any "accidents" that occurred. How does such a "government" even have the power to make laws?
Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:31:46 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:23:37 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:

No, only the government can shoot you for violently defending yourself against violence.

No, 15 states allow you to shoot someone in self-defense.
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Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:32:28 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:30:05 AM, Cody_Franklin wrote:
Letting criminals have free reign over the people who don't pay "user fees" is hardly any better than allowing the government to have at those who don't pay taxes. An actual government would have the power to act to get rid of the "undesirables", whereas your protection racket would just ignore any "accidents" that occurred. How does such a "government" even have the power to make laws?

Exactly. In Ragnar's world, crime and criminals prevail because they can pay for it. It's silly.
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Danielle
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11/28/2009 11:33:02 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
And your plan has even more holes. Basically instead of saying that your money automatically goes to helping you in case you call 911, you're giving people the option to pay for 911 services in case of need. Considering most people would pay for that, then all you're really doing is letting them choose to pay instead of just paying (and I get it, fine). But there are so many problems and legal issues that would go along with that; for instance people lying and somehow abusing the system or working around it - you even mentioned the problem of fraud. Then there would be lawsuits, etc. And who would pay for the government lawyers and trials?

Regarding defense, you also said, "This plan-- unlike yours-- allows a government to preserve sufficient scale to actually be able to engage in national defense, without the evils of the government coercing people to pay." Well if nobody pays, then it doesn't. Or rather if not enough people pay, then it doesn't.
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Ragnar_Rahl
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11/28/2009 11:38:21 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 11/28/2009 11:29:51 AM, theLwerd wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:20:47 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:19:27 AM, theLwerd wrote:
At 11/28/2009 11:15:25 AM, Ragnar_Rahl wrote:
Nobody holds you at gun point and forces you to pay taxes,
Actually, this isn't true. If, in fact, you fail to pay taxes, and the government catches wind of this-- the government sends men with guns, who will shoot if you attempt to resist them physically forcing you into handcuffs and into a courtroom. There may occasionally be a few more steps in between-- but this is always the endgame if you don't surrender to those steps.

So they shoot at you for attempting to resist arrest. Not failure to pay taxes.
They take you to jail for failure to pay taxes. Kidnapping is not morally superior to murder.

Arresting isn't kidnapping if it's within the parameters of the law.
Equivocation. I'm referring to the act "To kidnap," not the law's self-serving redefinition thereof. If you confine someone against their will, it is kidnapping-- and either way, even if you dislike this definition, it is FORCE, which is the relevant criterion for your earlier claim that one consents to taxes. It may be justified in response to someone who commits some other act of force or fraud.

Not paying taxes is not such an act.

And kidnapping is not morally superior to murder? Interesting. I'll debate you on that too :)
Then we'll be busy after the mafia game.

Letting criminals have free reign over the people who don't pay "user fees" is hardly any better than allowing the government to have at those who don't pay taxes.
Sure it is. One leaves people to the consequences of their own actions-- (don't buy protection, don't get protection), which may or may not be bad for them depending on whether the criminals actually exist, i.e., lets people appropriately economize on such costs by their best judgment-- The other involves the government itself creating new assaults to be protected from, making the government a guilty party which should be the target of any legitimate bid for government.

whereas your protection racket would just ignore any "accidents" that occurred.
Only if they occur to those who don't pay.

How does such a "government" even have the power to make laws?
The same way a tax-collecting government government does? It just adds to the end of each prohibited act-- "Toward paying citizens."
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Cody_Franklin
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11/28/2009 11:38:23 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Another question just occurred to me: the United States dollar only works because the U.S. Government says that it works. If a person doesn't pay their user fees (putting them outside of the government and the social structure), how does their money (or any of their assets, for that matter) have any value?