I haven't done a "Reader Mail" post in awhile. I get more comments now, making it harder. Most of my blogging is done via my cellphone. My lousy envTouch cellphone doesn't support advanced editing.
I can't compose a "Reader Mail" post on my cellphone, so I don't do it.
There were some posts recently that had some interesting comments. In this post, I discuss "Is The Quatloos Website Run By The State?".
My post was mentioned on the quatloos forum. It's been awhile since I tried debating hardcore Statists. I don't normally bother because it's hopeless. I'll address the points they raised. I don't expect to convince diehard Statists. There may be some people like me who read quatloos out of morbid curiosity, even though quatloos is disgusting and offensive. It's interesting to see how the enemy thinks. It's also interesting to see a collection of "people who were unfairly the victim of State violence". A good agorist can learn from their failures. I won't convince hardcore Statists, but there may be some more openminded lurkers. I'm not going to convince the hardcore quatloos regulars, but I might convince some other people who read that forum.
I'm not going to waste time creating a quatloos forum account and debating them there. It's pointless to debate Statists in a forum they control.
I'm not going to convince someone who has dedicated their life to evil. However, other people are appreciating my work.
I noticed that it's sometimes easier to convince people in person, than in an Internet forum. It's an advantage when you can use body language. (For this reason, my risk of being falsely charged with a crime might not be that high. The judge, police, and prosecutor would realize that they're evil, when they saw my body language. However, State thugs learn to desensitize themselves, to the emotions of their "customers".)
I don't understand why Marc Stevens tried debating them on their website. It's frustration and wasted energy for no useful purpose.
Regarding Marc Stevens, the "sovereign citizen" argument might work in traffic court. The judge is confused or doesn't want the headache of arguing with someone who's pointing out that the emperor is naked. The "sovereign citizen" argument almost definitely won't work in a Federal income tax trial.
This post by Franklin Sanders had an interesting bit. (That's an interesting story.)
At its depths, evil is not noble or grand. It's merely a silly, spoiled child, flicking boogers at his betters.None of the quatloos comments were more sophisticated than flinging boogers at me. I'm comfortable enough with the truth, that it doesn't bother me.
The dangerous part is that, if I'm falsely charged with a crime, the judge will have the same perspective as the quatloos regulars. Via biased jury selection, the judge and prosecutor probably will arrange for most jurors to be Statists.
Debating a hardcore Statist degenerates into
FSK: You're being illogical.At this point, it's just a flamewar and a name-calling contest.
Statist: You're being illogical.
It's merely debating axioms. My axioms are "The Non-Aggression Principle" and "Stealing is wrong when individuals do it. Stealing is wrong when small groups of people do it." and "Individual property rights are legitimate and valid." and "I own my own body and property and labor. Nobody else has a claim against my labor greater than my own."
The Statist axioms are "There's nothing wrong with the current taxation system, as written and enforced." and "If you disobey the will of the State/majority, then violence should be used against you." and "The current laws and legal system are a very good approximation of natural law."
I propose "Non-Aggression Principle" as the replacement for "Social Contract". "You consent to the current form of government based on where you were born." makes as much sense as "divine right of kings".
For example, under "Social Contract" theory, Saddam Hussein did nothing illegal. In Iraq, the "Social Contract" said "Saddam Hussein is absolute dictator." By not fleeing the country, the Iraqis consented. Similarly, by not fleeing Nazi Germany, the Jews consented to being murdered.
That's the reasoning Statists are using when they say "If you don't like taxes in the USA, then leave." Why should I be forced to leave? The criminals who steal from me should be forced to leave.
Unfortunately, there's no unoccupied space that I can move to with like-minded people, to form a free society. All land is claimed by a government. The world has been parceled out by several criminal gangs, colluding to enslave everyone else.
One nice idea is for libertarian-minded people to move to the same area and secede, either individually or as a group. Some people in New Hampshire are trying this, but they aren't that advanced yet. "Move to New Hampshire and secede!" seems more attractive than "Move to Somalia and try to start a market anarchist society!"
My viewpoint does not require that violence be used against people who disagree with me. The Statist viewpoint requires that violence be used against those who break the rules, even if they aren't hurting anyone. The rules are made by a handful of insiders. With a representative democracy, individual voters have no real influence.
A Statist confuses "breaking the arbitrary rules" with "real crime". I'm in favor of stopping real crime. I'm against enforcing non-crime, especially "victimless" crimes. (Here a Statist would say "Tax evasion isn't a victimless crime. You're stealing from the government." Of course, that assumes that the State's claim against my labor and property is valid. It's amusing to see terms like "tax loss" in tax evasion trials, because those terms assume that the government has a valid claim to my property.)
I won't use violence against those who disagree with me, or advocate for violence against those who disagree with me. However, I might use violence to defend myself and my property. Unfortunately, that isn't practical when you're outnumbered.
Almost everyone in the world is a Statist. That's a serious problem! However, most of them were never properly educated. If you're fed lies your whole life, you learn that being insane is "normal".
Here's where quatloos goes from disgusting to outright evil.
If you refuse to pay tribute to your masters, violence should be used against you. When the police kidnap/kill you, we're going to cheer them on!The quatloos website isn't merely discussing "tax protesters". They're actively advocating for evil.
If you're a small business owner in the productive sector of the economy, you almost definitely have a lot of hostility towards the IRS. I suspect that most of the quatloos users work in the parasite sector of the economy.
Here's some specific points they raised (paraphrased):
Tax protesters are criminals. It isn't immoral to celebrate the conviction of a criminal.This is the core disagreement. If you assume that the taxation system is legitimate, then "tax protesters" are criminals.
Celebrating a "tax protester" conviction is nothing like celebrating the death of a policeman.
The taxation system is one big extortion racket. That makes "tax protesters" heroes instead of criminals.
Jailed "tax protesters" are POWs in the war against the State.
There are lessons to be learned from the "tax protesters".
Most importantly, don't expect a fair trial in a government court. "Tax protesters" persist with "frivolous arguments" because they falsely believe that they can make the judge understand their viewpoint. "Tax protesters" start making crazy-sounding arguments, because they can't believe that the State "justice" system is completely totally unfair.
The rantings of a judge are just as crazy as the "tax protester". The difference is that the violence of the State backs the judge. The judge uses fancy legal language to reassure himself that he's doing the right thing.
Imagine if you were falsely charged with a crime. Police assault your home and business with a no-knock raid. There's an unfair trial that takes months/years and you're convicted. The judge bars you from explaining your side of the story to the jury. Your "lawyer" is advocating for your imprisonment. Your "lawyer" is arguing legal technicalities rather than "WTF? This is unfair!" After awhile, you'd start rambling like an idiot.
By the time you're in State court, you've already lost. Even if acquitted, you don't get reimbursed for the time and expense and stress of a trial. Even if acquitted in a criminal trial, the IRS can pursue a separate civil trial. The State prosecutor has practically unlimited resources, once he's decided you're a criminal.
Another lesson from "tax protesters" is "Don't incorporate your business." If your business is incorporated, you're intentionally entering IRS jurisdiction.
If you get paid on a 1099 or W-2, declare the income on your tax return and pay the tax. Anytime you deal with a corporation, you're SOL for tax evasion, because there's a W-2 or 1099.
It's better to start a business that interacts directly with customers and they pay you in cash. Then, it's very difficult to prove that you avoided taxes.
Another lesson is "Use gold and silver as money instead of FRNs." If you use paper money, you have a "laundering problem". If you put $100k cash under your mattress, you're going to be ripped off by inflation. If you put 100 ounces of gold under your mattress, you're protected from theft via inflation. There still is the risk that someone will seize your gold, either regular criminals or criminals wearing badges and uniforms.
If you use paper money, you pay the "inflation tax" even if you avoid income taxes. This leads to "The IRS is in collusion with the Federal Reserve and banksters." Income taxes must be paid whenever you work. Income taxes must be paid in Federal Reserve Notes. The IRS prevents people from boycotting the Federal Reserve and using other forms of money.
Also, "interest payments on the national debt" is one of the biggest Federal government expenses. This money/wealth is funneled directly to the banksters.
Here's another important lesson. You should not use the State banking system *AT ALL*. The IRS can seize your bank records. Based on your bank records, they can calculate tax owed. If you walk into a State-licensed bank, you should treat it as walking into an IRS office. Via the ironically-named "Bank Secrecy Act", your bank has an obligation to report suspicious transactions to the IRS. If you do a large transaction or multiple aggregate small transactions, the bank has an obligation to report it to the IRS. Cash deposits are reported.
You can't use *ANY* State-affiliated banking services. For example, Ed and Elaine Brown got caught because they used Post Office money orders. They needed money orders to pay their mortgage. Their customers paid them in cash. The Post Office clerk turned them in to the IRS.
However, Ed Brown may have been singled out for special scrutiny, because he was the leader of an anti-government militia.
If you have an all-cash business, you should consider declaring some income and file a reasonable-looking tax return. Arrange for some customers to pay by check, and report that income. You can have more-trusted customers pay in cash, and less-trusted customers pay by check and you report the transaction.
Continuing the example of Ed and Elaine Brown, they should have declared enough income to pay their mortgage, enough to pay the tax, and a little more to make it look reasonable.
It seems that "not reporting all your income" is less serious than "failing to file a tax return". Then, your defense can be "The IRS has the burden of proof, that you didn't declare all your income."
Suppose you're audited, and the IRS agent asks "Did you declare all your income?" and you answer "Yes." Now, you're guilty of "lying to a Federal agent", if the IRS agent can prove you didn't declare all your income. Don't talk to the police!
I noticed a State interrogation trick. Ask a bunch of easy questions like "Where did you go to school?" This lulls the victim into the habit of answering. Then, you ask the questions you want to ask.
In medieval times, the king's tax collector would look at your home and arbitrarily decide how much tax you owed. In the present, an IRS agent will look at your home and your car, and decide if you aren't reporting all your income. Things haven't really changed. However, you don't have to live in the most expensive home you can afford. You don't have to buy the most expensive car you can afford.
If you declare some income, you can do stuff like pay your mortgage, buy things via credit card, or qualify for a mortgage in the first place. (I was amused by the story of the guy who applied for a mortgage and got busted by the IRS. Without his knowledge, the banker gave him a "liar loan", lying about his income. He stupidly signed the form without checking it. Later, the IRS pursued him for tax evasion, based on the difference on the mortgage application and his tax return. He decided it was cheaper to pay the difference rather than fight it and lose anyway.)
The "tax protesters" failed miserably in court. There are important lessons. Don't fight the State in a State court. Don't fight evil according to evil's rules. Once an IRS agent decides to pursue you, you might be better off settling. If you aren't a high-profile "tax protester", you might be able to settle. Then, the IRS agent can declare it as a "victory" in his official statistics.
FSK doesn't like the Liberty Dollar. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.I'm amused by the backhanded compliment.
One point I make repeatedly is "Even if you don't like some stuff I write about, that doesn't invalidate all the other things I say."
I only half-agree with quatloos on this issue. I agree with "The Liberty Dollar is disgusting and offensive." I disagree with "Bernard von NotHaus belongs in jail." However, I expect he will be convicted.
A Statist says "Everything I don't like ought to be illegal."
You're an idiot if you pay $20 for (at the time) $12 of silver. Generic silver rounds are superior to Liberty Dollars.
The Liberty Dollar was a multi-level marketing scam. The silver cost $12. They were sold to associates for $18 and to the general public for $20.
Suppose your investment choices were:
- a money market checking account
- Liberty Dollars, paying $20 when spot silver was $12
- generic silver rounds
I advocate using generic gold and silver rounds, valued at the spot price. Lots of "alternate currency" promoters like NotHaus promote crazy things. This gives all people who promote free market money a bad name.
FSK made a mistake in another post. Therefore, everything FSK writes is wrong.This is typical Statist thinking. If someone makes one mistake, that automatically discredits everything they say.
At one time, there was a court injunction banning "The Wind Done Gone". It's shameful that occurred. I even did write "(was actually published)". There was a settlement before all the appeals were exhausted.
The correct answer is "'intellectual property' is not property". The idea of owning a song or book or idea is as silly as the idea that government owns my labor and my property.
This post is wrong. I'm ridiculing it. I'm not giving specific details of why FSK is wrong.Again, this is typical Statist logic. They claim I'm wrong but provide no details.
The point of that post was "consumer confidence matters" is a symptom of "The economy is one big scam!" If you're running a scam, it's important to keep the suckers clueless. If your business is sound, it matters less what people think.
Pro-State trolls claim to have refuted my analysis of the Compound Interest Paradox and the Black-Scholes Formula. Some people say "You're wrong. I'm not going to bother explaining why." I haven't seen any logically coherent counter-arguments.
Tax protesters lose because they are wrong. It isn't because the court system is unfair.If you define "wrong" as "what a Federal judge would say", then "tax protesters" are wrong.
One lawyer wrote "For almost every legal dispute, you can make a convincing argument for X and a convincing argument for not X. Ultimately, the reputation of the lawyer matters more than whatever points you're making."
If you read the Constitution and tax law one way, you will conclude "The taxation system as enforced is 100% valid." If you read it another way, you'll conclude "The government has way overstepped its proper limits." The only opinion that really matter is what a Federal judge says.
Due to political reasons, a judge will almost always rule in favor of the prosecutor, in a tax evasion trial, especially one involving a "tax protester". If you can't see the conflict of interest, you're completely clueless.
The law doesn't explicitly directly say "All your labor belongs to the government. The slaves have to get permission from the government whenever they work, via taxes and reporting requirements." It's implied based on the way it's enforced, the way it's advertised, and the way court decisions stack up.
Suppose you make a logical argument and the judge rules against you. That's too bad for you. The judge has a monopoly. His decisions are final.
My favorite "tax protester" argument is "If I have to get permission from the government whenever I work, then I'm not really free. I'm a slave." Direct taxes are 50%. It's worse if you add indirect taxes and hidden taxes. The other arguments are interesting, but sort of miss the real point, which is "All taxation is theft!"
The Constitution allows for taxes. The people who wrote the Constitution were infallible gods!Thomas Jefferson is dead. You have no idea what he would say, if he were alive today. I can't ask Thomas Jefferson "What do you think of the current Federal government?" Maybe Thomas Jefferson would have been saying "OK, everybody! It's time to revolt!"
(Thomas Jefferson neither wrote nor signed the Constitution. He was not present at the "Constitutional Convention".)
The Constitution was written by a bunch of lawyers. That's one strike against it already. They weren't just any lawyers. They were politically connected lawyers. They were insiders and they represented insiders.
There is no provision for direct popular ratification of the Constitution. The Constitution and amendments only have to be ratified by state legislatures.
Even if 51% or 75% or 99.99% of the people would vote for the Constitution as written and enforced, they don't have the right to steal via taxes from the people who would vote "no". However, if 99.99% of the people believe they have the moral obligation to steal from you via taxes, you have a serious problem.
The people who wrote the Constitution were only formally authorized to patch the Articles of Confederation. Instead, they came up with a strong central government.
Suppose I got together with 1000 other "market anarchists"/voluntaryists, and we had a "Constitutional Convention". Would you recognize our work as valid? Would you advocate using violence to force us to support the other Constitution? You probably would say "No. Don't be silly. A group of people can't just get together and write a Constitution and expect everyone else to recognize it." Why should I care about what a bunch of insider lawyers wrote more than 200 years ago?
The Constitution was written by a bunch of insider layers, looking to consolidate and expand their power. It's like a banking reform law was written by bank lobbyists. It's like a copyright law written by media corporation lobbyists. It's like a healthcare reform law written by lobbyists from drug corporations, insurance corporations, and the AMA.
That's the problem with government. Insiders write laws that suit their own interests. The Constitution was written by insiders to suit their interests.
Of course, a government that respected the original Constitution would be better than the current Constitution. I'm referring to the way it was originally written and enforced.
At the time the Constitution was written, there were no government licensing requirements for lawyers. A judge couldn't threaten to disbar a lawyer for saying something he didn't like. If you wanted to hire me to be your lawyer because I'm a good public speaker, that would be legal.
At the time the Constitution was written, judges explicitly reminded juries of their nullification power and responsibility.
At the time the Constitution was written, trials only took a week or two.
At the time the Constitution was written, it was the custom to argue both facts and law in front of the jury. If you disagreed with the prosecutor's interpretation of the law, you made that argument in front of the jury. Now, judges rule on the law beforehand and present the law to the jury as a settled, non-controversial issue.
At the time the Constitution was written, the government's taxation power was carefully limited. This would eliminate all debate about income taxes.
A Supreme Court judge said "The Bill of Rights was only added as a concession to the Anti-Federalist faction. They didn't really mean it. If they thought they could get away with it, they wouldn't have included it. We shouldn't take the Bill of Rights too seriously."
Once the Federal government is the status quo, individual rights can be gradually eroded. It's the "frog in pot of boiling water" problem. Each new bad law is only slightly worse than the one that came before. If you didn't object to the previous law, you probably wouldn't object to the new one that's slightly worse. Government has a monopoly, so it degenerates into the current mess. Insiders always want more power. Government has a monopoly, so there's no restraint. Elections are an insufficient counter-measure, to prevent government from getting too big. Elections are a fake choice between insider-screened candidates.
The Constitution contained many checks and balances. By adding checks and balances and the Bill of Rights, the more moderate Anti-Federalists were convinced to support the Constitution. Once a government is in place, its power only grows over time. Government has a monopoly. Insiders always want to consolidate and expand their power.
We don't work for the government! We swear!Is that supposed to be convincing? An undercover policeman is legally allowed to lie, if you ask him.
I said "quatloos is run by the State", and not "government". The State is not just government. It's also the various parasites and psychopaths who earn their living indirectly from the State.
For example, Lloyd Blankfien does not work for the government. He does work for the State. He earns a huge salary without producing anything useful. The corrupt government monetary system feeds Lloyd Blankfien's salary.
If you work for HBGary, you work for the State even though you aren't formally employed by the government. If you work for any business that receives funding from the government (directly or indirectly), then you're working for the State.
As another example, Ron Paul works for the government but not the State. Ron Paul is the only Congressman who sharply criticizes the Federal Reserve. That's a key anti-State viewpoint. Ron Paul says "The Constitution is a valid contract. If only politicians respected it." That is pro-State trolling.
Ron Paul wins the "least evil Congressman" award. He's one of the most freedom-minded Congressmen and mainstream media personality. He does sometimes shill for the State.
It was really suspicious that a Federal judge cited quatloos in his decision.
These websites were interesting. That person works as a spy for the State, infiltrating Internet anti-government groups and "tax protester" groups. That person allegedly is also a quatloos regular. For all I know, some of my regular commenters might be undercover police! They're tryng to befriend me and turn me in to the State, when I get more serious about agorism.
However, Brad Spangler made an interesting point. An undercover policeman who hangs out with real anarchsits, might start to realize that their arguments have merit.
[That slimeball allegedly talked to Irwin Schiff's girlfriend in an Internet forum during his most recent trial. The judge forced Irwin Shiff and his lawyer to use an "insanity defense", rather than presenting his anti-IRS arguments to the jury. Irwin Schiff's girlfriend complained that it was unfair that they were forced to use an insanity defense. That comment was turned over to the prosecutor, and presented as evidence that they weren't insane! However, Irwin Schiff probably would have been convicted anyway.
It actually is kind of impressive. After getting out of prison, Irwin Schiff earned enough income to get busted for tax evasion again. Irwin Schiff should have arranged for his customers to pay him in cash. Knowing he was already under scrutiny, he should have declared some income.]
Another interesting bit is that some quatloos regulars allegedly heavily edit Wikipedia, making sure the "income tax" laws are biased in favor of the State.
Even if you don't formally work for the government, you can still work for the State. Some quatloos regulars claim to be lawyers or accountants. A lawyer or accountant does not produce anything useful. That job only exists because of government. A lawyer or accountant is employed by the State.
If you work for a "think-tank" or a State-affiliated charity, you work for the State. They get funding from the government or various insiders. For example, ACORN gets funding from the government and insiders. The Southern Poverty Law Center is part of the State. If you get a consulting contract to spy on anti-government groups, you're working for the State.
In order to prove "We quatloos don't work for the State!", you'd have to list your job. Do you work in the productive sector of the economy or the parasite sector?
Sadly, I work in the parasite sector of the economy. I have no illusions about it. I write software for a large financial institution.
I'm working on doing something productive besides blogging. That will take some time. I'd probably have to do it agorist-style in the counter-economy. There are too many laws, regulations, and taxes that make it very hard to do productive work legally.
I'd be an idiot to quit a job that pays $25/hr after taxes for a cash job that pays $10/hr tax-free. It is very disappointing, that I'm wasting time writing meaningless software, rather than doing something useful. As long as I get paid via 1099 or W-2, I have no choice but to fill out a tax return like a good slave. I'm not going to do something stupid like fill out a zero return or any of the other "tax protester" tricks.
Comments like this one are a dead giveaway that there's ties between quatloos and the IRS.
Did I ever tell you guys about the time I walked in the conference room in a federal law enforcement office, and saw one of Famspear's poems taped up on the bulletin board?I suspect that most of the quatloos users work for the State, directly or indirectly. Some of them have ties to law enforcement. They would eagerly turn in a "tax protester" to the police, and cheer as that person's life is ruined. They receive direct or indirect payment, in exchange for turning in unruly slaves.
Experts on natural law say that "taxation is not theft".Which experts on natural law? The ones that work for the government?
Unfortunately, the academic profession has been completely captured by government. Most money for universities comes from the government or insider-funded charities.
Peer review is an excellent censorship tool. Suppose every professor in a field believes X. If someone writes a paper on "not X", then all the other professors will ridicule you. They will be angry at you for disagreeing with them.
Via peer review, it's almost impossible to write a paper that challenges the majority viewpoint.
For example, some "carbon dioxide causes global warming" propagandists bragged about corrupting the "peer review" process. They were abusing the "peer review" process to silence dissent.
Scientists who say "carbon dioxide causes global warming" get plenty of research grants. Scientists who say the opposite don't get many research grants. Eventually, all the scientists agree and dissent is impossible.
I'm offended when State propagandists say "A majority of scientists believe that carbon dioxide causes global warming." The State corrupted the scientists to get that majority. The truth is not determined by a majority vote.
Similarly, almost all philosophers, economists, and political scientists believe "Taxation is not theft!" Via peer review, dissent is practically impossible. If you're the type of person who questions the State, you'll avoid those fields.
There are others who agree with me. Stefan Molyneux and lewrockwell.com express strong anti-State sentiment. They both have a greater audience than me. I consider them experts in natural law, but they do make some mistakes.
I never liked the "quote experts" style of debate. I can think for myself.
Quoting Supreme Court and appeals court decisions is missing the point. That assumes their authority is legitimate. Quoting university professors is missing the point. Academics with the "wrong" viewpoint have short careers.
When you say "Natural law experts say 'Taxation is not theft!'", you're quoting experts who work indirectly for the State.
FSK's opinion is the minority. Therefore, FSK is wrong.The truth is not determined by a majority vote.
Any new and important idea is in the minority when first discovered. "All taxation is theft, no matter how it's collected and no matter what it's used for!" and "A government violence/justice/taxation/regulatory monopoly is evil and unnecessary!" are new and important ideas.
They are spreading rapidly on the Internet. It's hard to measure. Some insiders are starting to officially denounce the truth, rather than ignore it.
Yes, the vast majority disagree with me. The vast majority are brainwashed mindless zombies. In a real sense, the "zombie apocalypse" scenario is nonfiction. I do my best to survive, in a world filled with zombies.
Imagine if I had a column in a major newspaper or my own TV show. How many people would agree with me? Most people have never been exposed to the truth. They haven't even considered it.
A pro-State troll says "FSK's ideas are dangerous. He shouldn't be allowed to spread his lies in the mainstream media." If my ideas may convince people, is that evidence I'm wrong or is that evidence that I'm right?
Most people are initially hostile to the truth, because it contradicts their pro-State brainwashing. However, if you hear the same idea from multiple sources, you'll start to think "Maybe this idea has merit?"
Almost everyone is partially insane! It's obvious to me when I get on the subway and look around, just from everyone's body language. This is a very serious problem.
If everyone else believes they have the right to steal from me via taxes, then I'm pretty much SOL.
If those "tax protester" tricks worked, then rich people would use them.Consider some legal tax evasion tricks.
- charitable remainder trust
- QPRT trust (qualified personal residence trust)
- dutch sandwich
(In a "charitable remainder trust", you donate property to a trust. You draw an income from the trust. The trust's profits are tax-free. The value of the trust goes to charity when you die. The advantage is that the trust doesn't have to pay taxes on gains, similar to an IRA.
In a QPRT trust, you donate property to your children via a trust, partially avoiding estate taxes.
In "dutch sandwich", a corporation launders international profits though countries with favorable tax laws, lowering their tax bill.)
Also, most insiders are net negative taxpayers. If you're a lawyer who makes $1M per year and pays $400k in taxes, it's more realistic to say "You stole $600k via the State." rather than "You're a patriotic person who paid $400k in taxes."
As you get wealthier, your tax rate goes down. If it takes $100k in fees to set up a fancy trust, it's worth it when you're really wealthy.
Plus, if your income is equity grants or option grants, you don't owe taxes until you cash out.
This leads to the perverse example of "Warren Buffet pays a lower taxation rate than his receptionist." Also, most of Warren Buffet's wealth increase is capital gains. He doesn't owe taxes until he sells. One advantage of his charity is that he avoids taxes.
However, if the "tax protester" tricks did work, politicians would close the loophole. The law wasn't changed. Judges got stricter, regarding what evidence and arguments may be made in front of a jury. This made it easier to jail people without formally changing the law.
FSK is a whiny fake genius, who thinks he knows something everyone else is missing. All "tax protesters" talk like that.The "tax protesters" have only partially cracked their brainwashing. For some bizarre reason, they expect to get a fair trial in a State court.
Can you prove to me that I'm wrong? (By "proof", I don't mean "People with guns come to kidnap me.") I really am openminded. What if "market anarchism" really is an important and new idea? It'll be the minority when first discovered. There would be a lot of hostility, because it contradicts what everyone else is saying. There would be a lot of hostility, because many people earn their living directly or indirectly from the State.
How is it any different from hostility to Galileo, when he suggested that the Earth moves around the sun? How do you know that 20 or 50 years from now, the majority won't be saying "Humans were so stupid, when they believed that taxation is not theft. Look at all the problems that false belief caused."?
You probably can't prove to me I'm wrong any more than I could prove to a Federal judge "All taxation is theft! Government is one huge extortion racket!" Me and a Statist literally have different interpretations of reality.
Let's see who wins out. Statists can try to track and kidnap/kill/murder the people who want freedom. The people who want freedom will use every dirty trick they can to avoid capture.
One big advantage now, compared to decades ago, is that people can share information directly on the Internet and bypass State censorship. Statists can spy on me. (I'm sure I'm on a list by now.) However, they don't have the resources to kidnap/kill everyone. If I know something truly subversive and dangerous, the best thing I can do is spread the truth to as many people as I can. Then, State thugs have less to gain by silencing me.
Also, the most productive workers are the ones who are most openminded. If many of the top 1%-5% most productive workers are convinced, then it's all over for the State. I suspect that many of my regular readers are skilled software engineers, one of the few areas of the economy where a really skilled person has an advantage. Conversely, most of the quatloos regulars are experts in the parasite sector of the economy.
Unfortunately, software isn't enough to survive. Software doesn't produce food and water and shelter. I need to learn something useful besides writing software.
If you're a tax collector, you're the hero in your own mind. You aren't going to be able to see the truth, that you're really a criminal. I suspect (but can't prove) that most hardcore quatloos regulars have direct or indirect ties to the State and IRS. The quatloos regulars have a financial interest in preserving the State.
Tax protesters aren't victims. They hurt themselves.This is bully-oriented thinking. If a bully demands your lunch money and you refuse, did you "intentionally hurt yourself"?
I blame the aggressor and not the victim. The IRS is engaged in economic terrorism against productive workers.
The income tax creates a very confrontational relationship, between workers and the government. The government is trying to maximize its revenue. Workers want to protect their property from theft.
The "tax protesters" pay more in penalties than if they just paid their taxes in the first place.I don't blame the "tax proesters". I blame the government that sets ridiculously high penalties, to bully people into submission.
You don't know how many get away with it. Only the high-profile cases are mentioned.
If there's only 1% who get caught, tax rates are 50%, and the penalty is 5x the value of the tax bill, then the incentive is to evade! It's statistically favorable. I considered "tax resister insurance" as a viable counter-economic business. Of course, I'd be an idiot if I kept a written customer list.
My personal risk for tax evasion is greater than most. I'm very good at explaining why the State is evil. Therefore, it'd be a high priority to kidnap and torture me, if I get a larger audience.
That thread degenerated into a discussion of why gold and silver can't be used as money.
The free market didn't discredit the gold standard. Did the free market declare that gold ownership was illegal in 1933? Did the free market allow the Federal Reserve to print more Federal Reserve Notes than gold reserves?
A government gold standard always fails. The government prints more gold-redeemable paper than there is actual gold. The free market causes the gold price to start deviating from the "official paper price". Then, the "free market" is blamed and the gold standard ends.
Once you have more gold-redeemable paper than gold, the free market guarantees an eventual run and default. Once people realize that government paper is only partially backed, they demand metal, and the system ends. Via the "free market", gold starts trading at a premium to the State paper money. The "free market" is blamed, but the real problem is that government printed more gold-redeemable paper than they had gold.
President Roosevelt's "solution" was to declare that gold ownership was illegal. This enabled the Federal Reserve to inflate and bail out the banksters, just like the Federal Reserve is inflating now to bail out the banksters. In 1932, the Federal Reserve had a limited ability to inflate, due to the gold standard. Once there's no link between gold and the paper dollar, then the Federal Reserve and government can inflate at will.
In 1932, President Roosevelt ran on a campaign of "I'm going to preserve the gold standard!" Once inaugurated, he said "Sorry! It's an emergency! I'm going to default and declare gold ownership illegal!" President Roosevelt didn't have a campaign promise of "I'm going to make it illegal to own gold!" The slaves are SOL when a politician breaks a campaign promise.
"It's an emergency!" is an excuse for all sorts of evil. "It's an emergency!" is a great excuse for taking away people's freedom. Income tax withholding and reporting was a "temporary emergency measure" during World War II.
Currently, the Federal government issues gold and silver coins. The melt value is far greater than the face amount. They can't circulate as money based on the melt value.
Suppose the Federal government minted a 1 ounce gold coin with a face amount of "$10,000". It would circulate as money until the price of gold went over $10,000/ounce. Then, people would start hoarding them.
If politicians really wanted to allow people to use gold as money, they could mint a coin that said "one ounce gold; this coin is legal tender based on the spot price". Then, people would start using gold and silver as money again, side-by-side with Federal Reserve Notes. This is Ron Paul's "competing currencies" proposal. Politicians don't do this, because their goal is to make it easy to steal people's savings via inflation.
A government gold standard must end in default. The government and government-licensed banks are allowed to print more gold-redeemable paper than gold. This guarantees an eventual default. Even before the Federal Reserve was created, banks used their fractional reserve banking power to expand and contract the money supply, stealing lots of real wealth in the process. For example, under the National Bank Act during the Civil War, bank-issued paper money was given "legal tender" status.
In the present, people don't use gold as money because it's illegal, and not because of the "free market". The stories of Franklin Sanders and E-Gold illustrate what happens to people who try to use gold as money or make it easy for others to use gold as money.
There was another interesting thread. Someone pointed out "Federal tax trials aren't fair. The judge and prosecutor both work for the government. They're on the same team."
It was interesting to see the counter-arguments.
Judges sometimes rule against the government. Therefore, trials are fair.Suppose you were intentionally setting up a corrupt legal system. If you won 100% of the time, that would be a dead giveaway that it's corrupt. Sometimes, there's an acquittal or a judge rules against the prosecutor. That doesn't prove it's fair.
For political prisoners and high-profile "tax protesters", judges pretty consistently rule against the defendant. Sometime, less important defendants win. The prosecutor almost always wins in a high-profile case.
What are conviction rates? According to this article, 95% of defendants plea bargain. Of those who go to trial, 90% are convicted. That's an overall conviction rate of 99.5%. (.95 + .9*.05 = 0.995)
Some defendants plea bargain for tactical reasons, even if they believe they're innocent. It is offensive, that many lawyers view their job as "negotiate a favorable plea bargain", rather than going to trial and risk losing and a harsh sentence.
A pro-State troll says "A conviction rate of 99.5%! That proves that prosecutors only pursue people who are truly guilty!" That also is a symptom of a corrupt system.
On the other hand, if you aren't planning to plead out and you might be a tough defendant, then prosecutors may be less likely to pursue you. However, your life is ruined for months pending trial. There's a huge incentive to plea bargain to end the ordeal.
It's very stressful to be in jail without bail pending trial. Many defendants suddenly plea bargain, after holding out. The stress of the trial gets to them.
A criminal trial is "even if you win, you lose". If acquitted, a defendant is not reimbursed for legal expenses. If acquitted, a defendant is not reimbursed for the time and expense and stress of a trial.
In a tax trial, even if you win a criminal trial, then the IRS may pursue a separate civil trial to collect unpaid taxes. In the "IRS Tax Court", there is no jury trial. It's an administrative trial, and most "Tax Court" judges are former IRS agents. If you lose in "Tax Court", you have to pay your full tax bill, and only then you may sue the IRS to try to recover taxes. There is no "right to a jury trial" in civil income tax trials.
Sometime, a defendant can be acquitted on Federal charges but convicted on state charges, as occurred with Franklin Sanders. There can be separate state and Federal trials for the same action. Does 1/2 convictions count as a "loss" for the prosecutor?
Judges have lifetime appointments. Therefore, judges are unbiased.If someone can be counted on to give the "right" verdicts, then there's no harm to giving them a lifetime appointment.
Judges, politicians, prosecutors, and journalists are drawn from the same group of people. They're all on the same team.
Most judges are former prosecutors. Most judges worked for the State their whole life. Most judges are connected to insiders.
If you're Solicitor General and then appointed to the Supreme Court, you're going to be biased on favor of the government. If you're a prosecutor and get promoted to judge, you're going to be biased in favor of the government. If you're an IRS agent and get promoted to "Tax Court" judge, you're going to be biased in favor of the IRS.
How come criminal defense lawyers are almost never appointed as judges? Almost no judges are formal criminal defense lawyers. Almost no judges have experience representing non-insiders in court. The people appointed as judges favor the State.
Prospective judges have the "right" attitude. Therefore, they can be given lifetime appointments. They can be counted on to give the right decisions.
When it comes to taxes, insiders are in nearly uniform agreement. Without taxes, insiders would have to actually work. They're not going to ruin their gravy train.
Consider the story of Roosevelt vs. the Supreme Court. Initially, the Supreme Court ruled that the New Deal was Unconstitutional. Roosevelt and Congress threatened, to "pack the court", increasing the size so Roosevelt could appoint new judges. The Supreme Court capitulated.
The court-packing farce was dropped once the Supreme Court started ruling in Roosevelt's favor. Judicial independence is a lie. In the present, Supreme Court judges have nearly uniform agreement, that government can control nearly all aspects of everyone's life.
Government isn't monolithic. Government employees don't all think the samePoliticians have only superficial minor disagreements. Democrats and Republicans have many more similarities than differences. The minor differences are heavily debated, to distract the slaves.
For key State powers, like taxation, insiders have nearly uniform agreement. Anyone who questions the scam must be crushed.
Normally, parasites and psychopaths fight with each other. If someone starts questioning the scam, then differences are set aside. It inspires cooperation among parasites and psychopaths, when an honest and intelligent person starts questioning their scam.
When confronting a "tax protester", State parasites and psychopaths put aside their differences. They cooperate to crush him. This creates a massive highly-coordinate conspiracy, to crush the victim. Prosecutors openly brag about how they coordinate the State pogrom against the victim. The victim might be charged with several different crimes simultaneously. There might be separate trials in state and Federal court. Several different State bureaucracies will simultaneously investigate the victim. The prosecutor has virtually unlimited resources, when it comes to pursing a politically-motivated target. Vague laws are strictly enforced. The victim doesn't have a chance.
Government insiders don't agree on everything. When there's a high-profile political prisoner, they cooperate to crush him.
Judges are biased because they work for the government?! That means murderers don't get a fair trial either!Actually, some murderers don't get a fair trial. This is well documented.
Consider Curtis Flowers. He is black. He was accused of murdering his white boss after getting fired.
There were many mistrials.
In one mistrial, one black juror held out for acquittal, hanging 11-1. The judge tried to prosecute the holdout juror for "contempt of court". That severely threatens juror independence, if a judge will sanction a juror for giving the "wrong" verdict.
In the last trial, the judge was very lenient, when excusing black jurors "for cause". The prosecutor used his peremptory strikes to remove the remaining black jurors.
Did Curtis Flowers get a fair trial? Even in a murder case, there's a potential for bias.
Frequently, after a murder, police and prosecutors will link an easily-convictable person to the crime, even if there's insufficient evidence. The judge rubberstamps the prosecutor, rather than saying "WTF? There's insufficient evidence."
In *EVERY* criminal trial, there's potential for bias. A criminal trial is "State vs. criminal" and not "victim vs. criminal". The prosecutor claims to represent the victim.
This is particularly true for "victimless crimes". This includes tax evasion, possession of forbidden substances, and operating a business without a State permit. There is rampant abuse in the area of "victimless crimes". The obvious corruption makes this possible.
The prosecutor and judge both work for the government. They're on the same team. This leads to "justice" instead of justice.
State courts have a monopoly. There's no accountability. If they abuse their power, the slaves are SOL. If courts are incredibly inefficient, that's too bad.
Judges are appointed by the President, rather than being elected. That makes them "independent". The Federal Reserve is also "independent". The "independent" Federal Reserve acts for banks instead of doing what's right. Similarly, "independent" judges act for insiders, rather than doing what's right.
There's lots of "due process". Therefore, courts are fair.The "due process" is "cargo cult justice" and not real justice. By going through the motions, State court workers convince themselves that they are fair. The "due process" is just a fancy self-brainwashing ritual.
However, there is one advantage of court inefficiency. It costs a *LOT* to prosecute someone and give them the illusion of a fair trial. If you're small fry, you might evade prosecution. If many people refuse to plea bargain, the State can't handle that many trials.
However, high-profile targets always get prosecuted. There's always room in jail for political prisoners.
I'm very good at explaining why the State is one big scam. If I get a wider audience and I'm a successful agorist, then State terrorists will make it a priority to kidnap and torture me.
Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Is The Quatloos Website Run By The State?":
Thats funny. Ive been on Quatloos for awhile and am none of the things that you said we all were. I am actually a single father of 3, a small business owner who loves claiming every last thing I can to get more money back for my kids and an artisan on top of all. also ex-military which somehow didnt get put in your list. I dont think theres a single person in this world that wants to and stands in line to pay taxes, but we all have to and we all, if smart, minumize the amount we pay.What type of small business? Is it in the productive sector of the economy or the parasite sector?
It's hard to criticize soldiers, due massive pro-State brainwashing. For example, did you notice the hidden advertisements for war in the Super Bowl? If you're opposed to war, you should also oppose the soldiers who fight that war.
Some soldiers are good, like Pat Tillman. Some soldiers are evil, like the ones who assassinated Pat Tillman.
One ex-soldier said "If I took my soldier oath literally, that means I'm required to go to Washington D.C. and start executing politicians."
Some soldiers were tricked into signing up. However, everyone's responsible for what they do.
I'm sympathetic to someone who was tricked into signing up for the army. If you don't understand how war is one big scam, then you are evil. If you actively advocate for war, then you are evil.
Whos feathers are you going to ruffle? All you did was call a bunch of people names and prove that you think differently than anyone else. The problem is we do it, get it over with, and people like you spend years and thousands of dollars trying not to pay at all, go to court, go to jail, and at the end of the day you still have to pay the taxes since it is the law. Do the rest of us like the law? No, like I said no sane person wants to pay tax on top of tax after you paid some taxes. Will we do it to keep from going to court and jail? Yup, I have 3 kids to support, not going to go through that crap and leave them un cared for.I don't feel bad that I called out the quatloos regulars as evil. They are evil.
If you call out people for being evil, then maybe some of them will recognize that they're doing bad things. I doubt I'll convince hardcore statists. Other people may be convinced.
Yes, I think differently from the majority of people. I definitely think differently than evil Statists. How do you know that I'm wrong? Any new and important idea is in the minority when first discovered.
It's one thing to say "I'm going along with the government taxation scam, because I'm afraid for my personal safety." It's another to say "I'm going to cheer along as those who do fight lose." The former is a reasonable tactical decision. The latter is evil.
There is no legal remedy for fixing the law. All politicians support the taxation system as written. It's impossible to get elected without lobbyist money.
The system is collapsing. "Be an obedient slave." isn't going to cut it much longer.
If you waste more than half your life via taxes, that's also being negligent to your children. If you didn't have to flush more than half your productivity down the toilet via taxes, you'd have a lot more time for your children.
It does suck that police will jail you unfairly, leaving your children without a father. Is that a reason to be a chicken? Is that a reason to fight? Do you blame the victim, or the aggressor?
Are you prepared for the collapse? Is it negligent to your children, to be unprepared?
Right now, I get paid on a W-2, so my tax resistance opportunities are zero. I'm working on that. Maybe someday, the people on quatloos can be cheering my wrongful imprisonment! I hope to avoid that. However, I'd be a coward and hypocrite if I didn't try something.
The system is collapsing. That's going to happen no matter what the IRS and other Statists do. It's over. Even if I'm wrongfully imprisoned or murdered, the collapse is coming. It can't be prevented anymore. All that's left to do is prepare.
When people like you pay taxes without resisting, that gives the police resources so they can afford to intimidate everyone else. You are partially responsible for all the evil that government does.
This leads to another counter-argument I hear from Statists.
Living in the USA, you've got it nice. Compared to most other countries, and most other times in history, living in the current USA is pretty good!Living as a slave in the USA is better than being a slave at almost any other time in history, or at any other place in the current world. I agree with that. (However, conditions in the USA are deteriorating. Some people are already fleeing for greener pastures.)
However, that doesn't justify the abuses that do occur.
"I beat my wife less than the other guy." doesn't justify doing it. "I steal less than other people." doesn't make you honest. "I treat my slave better than other masters." doesn't make you a non-slaveowner.
More than half the productivity of this country is wasted on taxes and government. Imagine if that were put to productive use instead!
Being a slave in the USA is better than most slaves at any previous time in history. That doesn't make me "not a slave".
For example, I'm a smart guy and a skilled worker. Why haven't I had more success, career wise. A pro-State troll says "It's because FSK is a pathetic loser." I realized that it's a completely corrupt system and a non-free market. As a non-insider, there's a "glass ceiling". As an employee, I'm not going to progress beyond a certain point.
I realized the correct answer "It's a completely corrupt system and a non-free market." Parasites and psychopaths feel threatened by me, because I can see through them. That limits my personal opportunities. Due to the State, it's hard for me to say "I'm starting my own competing business." I am going to try to start my own business, but due to the State, it probably will have to be agorist-style.
I'm wasting my life writing meaningless financial software, rather than doing something useful. For now, I'm responding to the non-free market signal, that I'm most valued writing meaningless software. If I do start an on-the-books business, part of the taxes I pay subsidize my larger corporate competitors.
The economic game is rigged. I'm going to refuse to play by the rules of a corrupt system.
It's definitely stupid to try to fight the State in State court. The "next generation" of "tax protesters" should work off-the-books in the counter-economy. I can learn from the failures of others. The lessons I've learned are:
- Deal completely in cash. Gold or silver are better.
- Don't incorporate your business.
- Don't use the State banking system at all. Tax collectors can use bank records to figure out how much they should steal from you.
- Report a reasonable-looking tax return. Tax collectors will do a "lifestyle audit", and automatically assume you're hiding income. If necessary, arrange for some people to pay you by cash and others by check, and report the by-check income.
- Deal with trusted partners. Try to avoid undercover police. This is hard.
- By the time you draw the attention of a prosecutor or tax collector, you've already lost. At this point, it might be better to minimize damage than fight.
- If you're very good at criticizing the State, and acting on your beliefs, the police *WILL* find a way to prosecute you. If State thugs decide to use the "full court press" against a victim, he is SOL.
It's been awhile since I debated hardcore Statists. Normally, I'm disgusted and avoid them completely. I'm not going to convince them, but other people might be interested.
The regulars on the quatloos website are *EVIL*. They are disgusting and offensive. Unfortunately, most judges, policemen, prosecutors, and insiders think like that. A Statist says that I'm evil. Let's see which philosophy wins out.