Some links that have flashed by my browser in recent days:
- It takes so long to reach the IRS by phone that a company has gone into business selling places in the phone queue. That’s right. They have many lines on which they call the IRS and stay on hold, and then you call them and buy the line that has been on hold longest so you don’t have to wait so long. Somewhere, a star on Obama’s economic team is tallying this up as “innovative job creation.”
- Identity thieves have been so successful at stealing “refunds” from the IRS by filing phony tax returns by using the social security numbers of other people that the IRS started issuing a supplemental identification number — an “E-file PIN” — that taxpayers could use to prove that it really was them filing their return. Because they figured the identity thieves, having stolen one identification number, wouldn’t be able to steal the second one, I guess.
- The number of IRS employees continues to fall. The agency says it plans to shed another 2–3,000 people this year.
International Tax Resistance News
- Anjali Damania and Alyque Padamsee have started a taxpayers union and have launched a tax strike to protest government corruption in India.
Padamsee claimed that he always does everything legal and correct. He said, “I checked with lawyers. We are a group of like-minded people, and the tax paying population of this country, and they said, anyone who works together could form a union. And by law, a union is allowed to strike. We will strike by not paying tax. We plan to assemble a million people with a fee of Re 1 each, but all this is at the planning stage. We are talking with senior lawyers and will have them on board. Our main aim will be to make the government accountable. If there are any recommendations, people can contact me.”
However, it is not yet specified which tax the Tax Payers’ Union will not pay, as there are various taxes in India, and most of them are indirect tax, which one pays in form of service, or while buying products. The other important taxes which concern an individual directly, include income tax and professional tax.
In my considered opinion, corruption can be beaten if all work together. To eradicate the cancer of corruption — the “hydra-headed monster,” it is now a high time for the citizens to come together to tell their governments that they have had enough. That is the miasma of of corruption. If the same continues, taxpayers may resort to refuse to pay taxes by “non-cooperation movement.”
- Tommaso Cerno, a journalist and gay rights activist in Friuli, Italy, has made waves by announcing, in a letter published in Repubblica, a tax strike for gay rights.
- George Theofanou, who participated in the “won’t pay” protests against road tolls in Greece, has been charged €21,787.20 by the Greek tax agency for his failure to pay €427.20 in tolls. Theofanou issued a defiant letter, denouncing the “mafia” government and vowing to continue resisting.
- Farmers are the latest group to organize to protest taxes in Greece, driving their tractors to Athens, blocking highways, and attacking government buildings.
- Textile businesses in Vaishali were shuttered as the textile union launched a strike against a new tax.
War Tax Resistance
- My Waging Nonviolence article, on how the War Tax Resisters Penalty Fund is a model for civil disobedience campaigns by demonstrating how to blunt the force of government deterrents, has been picked up by Truthout and OWSNe.ws.
- The POWERevolution blog has a new post about war tax resistance.
If the government does not allow us the freedom to direct our taxes toward more enriching and sustainable funds, we will begin the process of taking that freedom for ourselves. We will discontinue paying taxes to the government, and instead redirect our money into a community fund that distributes our income in a way that serves all of us. As long as we continue paying for the current system in the form of taxes, we are complicit in the violence and corruption committed by it. By withdrawing our funding of it, we withdraw our consent of its actions.
- Bernard J. Berg recalls how he came out of the
doubtful that what he was doing deserved to be called “service”:
I too served in the Navy, just before Vietnam, helping to keep the sea lanes safe for United Fruit Co. and the Dulles brothers. I later joined the war tax resistance effort sponsored by Lehigh-Pocono Committee of Concern. Money which should have gone to the IRS to pay for our war crimes went into the fund to be used for worthy causes. But the IRS had the last laugh as it garnered my bank account and got more money for illegal wars with the fines it extracted from me.
- I just learned about the following presentation which was made at the 2013 Bitcoin Conference, and features Angela Keaton from AntiWar.com, Carla Gericke of the Free State Project, and Teresa Warmke of Fr33Aid, discussing how nonprofits can benefit from using BitCoin:
- The number of U.S. citizens who are renouncing their citizenship is climbing, continuing a dramatic trend since 2008.