Some War Tax Resistance News in Brief

Some war tax resistance news in brief:

  • At War Tax Talk, Erica Weiland reflects on the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Japanese cities. Excerpt:

    Nuclear weapons really keep the war economy going since their very presence requires a constant readiness for war, not to mention maintenance and supervision. Over the next ten years, the U.S. is estimated to spend about $348 billion on nuclear weapons. Why work for a nuclear-free world but pay for those weapons yourself?

  • Members of the U.S. Agape community were at Walden Pond to commemorate the anniversary. Suzanne Shanley remarked:

    We join with peacemakers throughout the world in mourning and repentance for this unspeakable act of deliberate slaughter of a civilian population, our sisters and brothers in Japan. , Agape members walked with friends from the Buddhist Peace Pagoda through Walden Pond, commemorating the Anniversary among the crowd on the beach as the spirit of Thoreau’s refusal to pay a poll tax for war, inspired and sustained us.

  • One variant of the “peace tax” idea would allow taxpayers who are conscientious objectors to redirect the portion of their federal taxes that pays for armaments and militaries to a new government-run Peace Institute that is designed to promote national security and international stability through nonviolent means. Sounds pretty good, until you realize that we already have a government-funded United States Institute of Peace, chartered to promote international peace through nonviolent conflict resolution

    But its chairman, Stephen Hadley, is a relentless hawk whose advocacy for greater military intervention often dovetails closely with the interests of Raytheon, a major defense contractor that pays him handsomely as a member of its board of directors.

    Hadley, formerly George W. Bush’s national security advisor, was appointed to the Institute of Peace by President Obama, recipient of the similarly ironic Nobel Peace Prize. “Peace Tax” payers may one day be able to pool their funds with Lockheed Martin, which made a $1 million grant to the Institute in .

The following newspaper article (found in the Amarillo [Texas] Globe-Times) concerns a tax resistance statement issued by the New York Yearly Meeting of the Society of Friends (Quakers):

Quakers Urged Not To Pay Taxes

 — Quakers in the New York area have been encouraged to refuse to pay taxes or hold jobs that contribute to the war effort in Viet Nam.

The Society of Friends office here made public a “message to Friends on Viet Nam,” a document approved at an annual meeting at Lake George, N.Y.

The document promised financial aid through special committees if Quakers changed jobs or refused to pay taxes in protest against the war.

The regional group also approved a letter to President Johnson urging him to “bring hope to the world by breaking the vicious circle” in Viet Nam and to use “every imaginative and creative method to immediately end the war.”

“We are confident that if you take such positive steps, you will have the overwhelming thanks of mankind,” the letter said.

In addition, the 72 Friends “meetings,” or congregations in New York, North New Jersey, and southern Connecticut were called upon to “support acts of conscience by setting up committees for sufferings.”

In Washington, the Internal Revenue Service said it has the power to attach bank accounts or place liens against property to the extent of unpaid taxes owed by a citizen.

A spokesman said in some cases persons who refuse to pay their taxes for one reason or another place money in an account for IRS to seize.

An employe can’t stop his employer from withholding taxes from his pay check, IRS said.