Greek Tax Resisters Make IMF Blink

The newsletter of Kansas City PeaceWorks includes some reflections on ’s NWTRCC national gathering, including:

  • Helen Yeoman’s “How to reduce tax payments legally — for peace” in which the tax accountant incorrectly insists that “you have only two choices — reduce your income below the taxable level or have enough deductions to do this. Either way causes you to live at the poverty level.”
  • Susan Miller & Jane Stoever’s “Civil resistance caps war resisters’ meeting” and “War tax resisters meet, link taxes to KC nuke-parts plant.”

Jerry DePyper has been trying to introduce the tactic of conscientious tax resistance to the American anti-abortion movement, but hasn’t been able to make much headway. In a new post he hears from anti-abortion movement leaders who explain their reluctance to join in such a campaign. In part, it is out of fear of jeopardizing the non-profit status of their organizations.

The clear pattern in these honest comments meshes well with what I had already come to suspect. …[P]eople might join if there were other people already doing it. Both pro-life leaders say that no recognized pro-life leader would want to risk it because of the legal issues with IRS, and they don’t want to lose their tax exempt status. So nobody wants to be first, and nobody but David Little and Jerry DePyper wants to publicly do anything until somebody else does it first: a classic Catch-22.

By prohibiting tax-exempt non-profits from engaging in political activity or confrontational activism, the government effectively buys the silence of such groups. The current progressive fad of calling for the end of constitutional protection of the rights of all incorporated groups would, if successful, worsen this.