Earth Island Institute Talks Tax Resistance

The Earth Island Institute’s on-line newsletter The Edge just put out a special edition about tax resistance, featuring an statement by Julia “Butterfly” Hill on her record tax resistance, a letter from me about how tax resistance isn’t as hard as it’s made out to be, an article about a tax refuser who was taken to court by the IRS and actually won, and an article about a former IRS agent who became convinced by the constitutionalist arguments against the legality of the income tax and now works for the other team.

If the libertarians and the lefties are ever going to start working together, it will be thanks to groups like Green Scissors. “, the Green Scissors Campaign, led by Friends of the Earth, Taxpayers for Common Sense and U.S. Public Interest Research Group, has been working with Congress and the Administration to end environmentally harmful and wasteful spending. Working to breach party lines, the Green Scissors Campaign has helped cut more the $26 billion in environmental wasteful programs from the federal budget.”

Cut government spending and help the environment? What’s not to like?

The libertarian Rational Review’s “Liberty Action of the Week” is War Tax Resistance. The accompanying article gives a nice plug to The Picket Line, and a libertarian-friendly overview of the current practice of war tax resistance in the U.S.

Here’s an apology from a 13-year IRS veteran, in ’s New York Times:

It is no secret that the nation’s tax code favors the wealthy and protects big business. (An astounding 63 percent of United States corporations paid no federal income tax at all in .) The individuals and businesses I encountered during my career did not have an army of tax lawyers, certified public accountants and lobbyists to guide and protect them. Most netted less than $30,000 per year. Most operated out of rundown store fronts in tired strip malls. Most were honest people who knew my arrival was the death knell of their American dream. It should come as no surprise: the I.R.S. goes where the money’s owed, and the money is owed by the little guy.

Reason magazine has a good article, sympathetic and skeptical at the same time, about the weird constitutionalist tax protest movement:

At the conference you learn that taxing violates our natural rights; and anyway, the Constitution does not permit an unapportioned direct tax like an income tax; and if you think the 16th Amendment took care of that, well, it wasn’t properly ratified; and even if it was, it didn’t give any new taxing powers to Congress; and even if it did, the statutes and codes of the IRS as written aren’t officially U.S. law; and even if they were, they don’t define liability and income such that any normal working American owes taxes; and anyway, if you just don’t file they might never catch you.