Taxes Are Involuntary

This post title could probably win an award for the most obvious statement of the year. However, I don’t think that enough people realize the implications involved in these three little words: taxes are involuntary.

If taxes are taken from us against our will, the social contract is null and void. A contract cannot be legally binding if one party is violently coerced into participating. This may seem a bit over the top, but unfortunately its the truth. If any person refuses to pay their taxes they’ll end up in jail. The taxes will be taken from them anyways and late fees and penalties will be charged to boot.

The idea of the consent of the governed is bunk. Its a myth. Any person who doesn’t consent will be punished. Almost everybody understands this. Nobody wants to go to jail. We pay our taxes without making a big deal out of it. The perception is that taxes are paid voluntarily. That perception is false.

I feel compelled to write this post now because I filed and paid my taxes last week. As an independent, self-employed, accountant I have to pay all of my own payroll taxes and no federal income taxes are withheld from my checks. On tax day, the full brunt of taxation is laid bear to me. Fortunately, I am a diligent saver and I had the money on hand. Unfortunately, sending my hard earned money to federal government was still pretty painful.

May I ask a simple minded question? Why should I be forced to participate in social security and medicare? When money is sent to the federal government for social security, the money gets put in an account with your name on it. Then, almost immediately, the money is taken out of your account and lent to the United States treasury. The treasury uses that money to pay its innumerable other bills. Your social security money goes toward the bridges to nowhere. The wars. Welfare. Interest on previous debt. And yes, it goes towards paying for other people’s social security.

But wait? Why should it go towards paying for other people’s social security? Haven’t they already paid in? Weren’t they already taxed for their retirement? Yes, they were. But the money was spent on other things. Now you need to be taxed too. In other words, taxes must be levied twice to pay for a single person’s social security.

As I insist on paying my own way, I find it morally reprehensible that somebody will be taxed in the future for my social security. In order to maintain a clean conscience, I’ll have to renounce social security in the future. When looked at in that light, its clear that my social security payments are taken from me without any corresponding benefit.

Wouldn’t it be better if we could just get a bill from the government like any other service provider? If we want to keep the service, we pay the bill. If not, they cut off our governmental services. Heck, if that were the case, I might just subscribe. The only problem is that I’m not sure what services they provide that I’m not already paying for.

I pay my rent for our condo. I pay a water bill for water. I pay an internet bill for internet. We pay the food bill for groceries. We pay the cell phone bill for cell phones. We pay sales taxes for the local police and roads. We pay a bunch of taxes on gas for interstate highways. I pay student loans for my education. Everything is taken care of. What are the feds actually doing for me?

I mentioned above that I am a self employed accountant. I intentionally don’t do tax work. However, I have studied the tax code and am more familiar with it than I’d like to be. At one point, it seemed like a good idea to get into tax work. The pay is high. There is never a shortage of work.

So, I took and passed a very challenging exam to qualify my self for tax work. I had a certification to represent clients in tax court and in front of the IRS. I landed a couple of clients and was starting to do taxes for them when I realized that I truly hated what I was doing. Navigating the tax code is tremendously difficult and unrewarding. I stopped doing that and focus now on real live accounting, debits and credits.

The reason I mention this at all is to point out an unfortunate consequence of the United States tax system. Tons of time and energy are wasted on complying with the tax code. Tax accountants are some of the most brilliant people I’ve ever met. The amount of knowledge that is required is astounding. The tax code is some 77,000 pages long and it changes every year.

There is a whole class of potential scientists, inventors, teachers, and innovators that are doing taxes instead of fulfilling their potential. We see then that instead of providing services, the government is actually preventing new and exciting services from even coming in to existence. And we are paying for it!

Its a bad system. Why can’t we all just spend our own money as we see fit? I don’ think that humans are stupid. We can decide for ourselves how to allocate our own resources.

I would certainly pay for road and police services. Why can’t the road authority and the police company send me a bill just like all of my other service providers do?

Likewise for the politicians. Why can’t they send me a bill for political services rendered? You know why. Because it would go straight into the garbage with all  of the other useless service offers that nobody wants.

Since I have no recourse, and going to jail won’t keep the tax collectors from going into my account and taking my money anyways, let me say on the record that I do not consent. Federal taxes are not a good value and I’d like to cancel my subscription.

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2 Responses to Taxes Are Involuntary

  1. hazencage says:

    actually tax’s are voluntary because you can leave the social contract and enter a new one.

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