I consider the Income Tax unconstitutional, perhaps legal, but legal and constitutional seem to be two different animals, neither with a good enough definition as to be meaningful as relates to taxation. No people are free who MUST render earnings to a government under threat of imprisonment and confiscation. Free is not the proper descriptor. Oppressed is the proper descriptor. It seems America is only CLAIMING TO BE THE LAND OF THE FREE, title stolen from the days it WAS free. All of our military who have died to “protect freedom” have died in vain because there hasn’t been freedom – the idea of freedom was a charade, a canard, a spoof sold to decent Americans under false pretenses. I think our government officials owe the taxpayers a HUGE apology and a LOT of help paying for the irresponsible debts it has foisted off onto the taxpayer.
I find it interesting that our country was founded upon freedom from oppression, and shortly after the victims becoming the ones in charge, oppression once again raised it’s head. Any government will always want and need more than it is accustomed to having. Even the people who fought against England’s taxes, as soon as possible after winning that war, proceeded to find ways to oppress Americans in their own country, in effect turning it into the very thing they had fought to eliminate.
“The first income tax suggested in the United States was during the War of 1812. The idea for the tax was based on the British Tax Act of 1798. The British tax law applied progressive rates to income.” (Wikipedia)
“In order to help pay for its war effort in the American Civil War, Congress imposed its first personal income tax in 1861. It was part of the Revenue Act of 1861 (3% of all incomes over US $800). This tax was repealed and replaced by another income tax in 1862.” (Wikipedia)
“In 1894, Democrats in Congress passed the Wilson-Gorman tariff, which imposed the first peacetime income tax. The rate was 2% on income over $4000, which meant fewer than 10% of households would pay any. The purpose of the income tax was to make up for revenue that would be lost by tariff reductions.
In 1895 the United States Supreme Court, in its ruling in Pollock v. Farmers’ Loan & Trust Co., held a tax based on receipts from the use of property to be unconstitutional. The Court held that taxes on rents from real estate, on interest income from personal property and other income from personal property (which includes dividend income) were treated as direct taxes on property, and therefore had to be apportioned (divided among the states based on their populations). Since apportionment of income taxes is impractical, this had the effect of prohibiting a federal tax on income from property. However, the Court affirmed that the Constitution did not deny Congress the power to impose a tax on real and personal property, and it affirmed that such would be a direct tax. Due to the political difficulties of taxing individual wages without taxing income from property, a federal income tax was impractical from the time of the Pollock decision until the time of ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment (below).
Ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment
Main article: Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution
Amendment XVI in the National Archives
In response, Congress proposed the Sixteenth Amendment (ratified by the requisite number of states 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.
The Supreme Court in Brushaber v. Union Pacific Railroad, 240 U.S. 1 (1916), indicated that the amendment did not expand the federal government’s existing power to tax income (meaning profit or gain from any source) but rather removed the possibility of classifying an income tax as a direct tax on the basis of the source of the income. The Amendment removed the need for the income tax to be apportioned among the states on the basis of population. Income taxes are required, however, to abide by the law of geographical uniformity.
Some tax protesters and others opposed to income taxes cite what they contend is evidence that the Sixteenth Amendment was never properly ratified, based in large part on materials sold by William J. Benson. In December 2007, Benson’s “Defense Reliance Package” containing his non-ratification argument which he offered for sale on the Internet, was ruled by a federal court to be a “fraud perpetrated by Benson” that had “caused needless confusion and a waste of the customers’ and the IRS’ time and resources.” The court stated: “Benson has failed to point to evidence that would create a genuinely disputed fact regarding whether the Sixteenth Amendment was properly ratified or whether United States Citizens are legally obligated to pay federal taxes.””(Wikipedia)
I also find it disgusting, weak, and opportunistic. Taxation under force of law MAY be constitutional, but I will never believe it is. It matters not to me who did or did not approve it. I believe taxation to be unconstitutional and exceedingly oppressive. King George of England could not have done a better job of oppressing than have our founder’s offspring. And almost every succeeding Administration has done its share of stiffing Americans who pay the horrendous taxes for the waste that our politicians specialize in. If that is not a sad commentary, I cannot fathom a sadder one.
I believe we have some, no, I believe we have many people within our government who should be indicted and tried in a court of law. There have been bribes given and bribes accepted. There have been scams. There have been thefts. There have been lies to the electorate. There have been attempts to divide various factions of the electorate.There has been behavior unbecoming a US official. No citizen is allowed the leeway that our officials have claimed as their own. So……why haven’t these people been indicted already? Is it because within our government, no one can trust that he will be safe in doing so? Or is it that there are none with enough honesty to make accusations stick? Exactly WHY have our courts and Congress and the Presidency become so deaf to the citizens? Is it because they are not required to answer to us? Or is it merely that citizens have NO WAY of regaining lost liberties in a peaceful and legal fashion now that our ballot boxes being so totally corrupted – and allowed to remain by our elected officials? In an honest court, if one can be found, there are few politicians who could avoid a life sentence behind bars, and none who could provide restitution for all the harm he has done.