Agorist Proposes Tax Resister Insurance

At FSK’s Guide to Reality the proprietor engages with my post from about the economic irrationality of taxpayer compliance.

“What is really needed,” says FSK, “is an agorist IRS insurance program. That way, you can be reimbursed for fines, penalties, and even jail time if you get busted for tax evasion.” Something like the War Tax Resisters Penalty Fund but more inclusive both in what sort of resisters may apply and which sorts of penalties they can seek reimbursement for. , I mentioned the Breton Association in France, which “proposed, in the first place, to refuse to pay any illegal tax, and in the second place to raise by contribution a common fund for indemnifying any subscriber, whose property or person might suffer by reason of his refusal.”

The members subscribed each ten francs. In the event of any tax being imposed without the consent of the Chambers, or with the consent of a Chamber of Deputies created by any illegal alteration of the existing law, payment of the tax was to be refused, and the money subscribed was to be employed in defending and indemnifying the persons who should so refuse, and to prosecute all who might be concerned in the imposing, or the levying of such illegal taxes.

This was considered so dangerous that the government prosecuted newspapers who dared to print the Breton Association’s manifesto.

Here’s another data point for the debate over why people irrationally (from a purely economic point of view) pay their taxes:

[W]e use a computational modeling approach to examine the long-standing social issue of tax compliance. Specifically, we design an agent-based model — the Networked Agent–Based Compliance Model (NACSM) — where taxpayers not only exist within localized social networks, but also possess heterogeneous characteristics such as perceptions about the likelihood of audit and apprehension. When making compliance decisions, agents in our model factor in their neighbors’ compliance strategy payoffs. We find that for a given enforcement regime, a world with limited knowledge of neighbor payoffs appears to lead to higher levels of aggregate compliance than when agents are aware of neighbor strategy payoffs and factor these into their individual compliance decisions.