April 15: Taxes Are Theft or Dues?
|April 15, 2014||Posted by Staff under Editorials|
This 2014 excerpt of Guardian Liberty Voice, Apr 12, is by Michael Cantrell.
As radical as it may sound, taxes are legalized theft that violates the right of property.
After a person trades their most precious commodity, that of time, to an employer in exchange for dollars, the money belongs to that individual and unless the person decides to give or exchange that money for products or services that improve the quality of life, no one has the right to deprive them of it. Yet this is exactly what government does, even deducting taxes before an employee receives their paycheck.
The government exists to serve the people and protect their rights and freedoms. All of the powers the government possesses are supposed to be from the consent of the governed. What if people today have not consented to a particular law or power granted to the government in generations past? Should that activity continue to be legal? More importantly, what gives the state the right to forcibly take someone’s property and give it to someone else? Are regular citizens allowed to participate in such an activity? If someone were to hold a neighbor at gun point, steal their property, and give it away, would that not be frowned upon in modern society?
While many attempt to justify taxation by stating that the money goes to programs to help the poor, forced charity is not charity at all. And while people living in poverty is a horrible reality, high taxes on business owners destroy jobs.
Government uses threats of imprisonment and other harsh consequences to force their hand into the pockets of the people and take their property. Why do people put up with it?
Ed. Notes: “Taxes are the price we pay for civilization,” you hear said by those who get to live off others paying taxes. But what’s so civilized about war and corporate bailouts? Could ending taxes end such bad behavior?
Of course governments do some decent things. But could they fund, say, police protection with membership dues? And fund roads by charging user fees (attached to the price of fuel)? And must government provide parks or could groups like the Nature Conservancy?
Taxes, and their mirror opposite — subsidies — have inherent flaws that come with the territory:
1) they distort price,
2) they require expensive bureaucracy,
3) they overly empower the recipients, and
4) they demean the payor.
Fortunately, however evil they may be, taxes are not necessary. Whenever society as a whole wants to take a collective action that needs funding, it can charge a fee — like a gas “tax” (a fee for polluting the air) — or require dues — like a land “tax” (owed by owners for displacing every other member of society from the site one claims).
So, yes, do feel abused when taxed, but take it one step further and replace them with charges that adhere to the justice of quid pro quo.