Tax resistance news in brief:
- I don’t know that there’s much to be gained from watching this sausage get made, but here is a quick sketch: The Biden administration is working on legislation billed as an “infrastructure package” that spends a bunch of money, and tries to raise that money without raising individual taxes on most Americans. One way they hope to raise the money is by boosting spending on tax enforcement (e.g. audits, collections) at the IRS and increasing the agency’s ability to snoop on bank accounts under the theory that this would mean a lot more tax money collected that is currently being left on the table. The legislation is moving forward on two fronts: an ostensibly “bipartisan” version, by which some Republicans would risk the wrath of their party to work with the Democrats in return for helping to shape the legislation, and a unipartisan version if that doesn’t work out, that would have to be rammed through via the Democrats’ razor-thin Congressional majority. However, for reasons that are a mix of fact and fantasy, the Republican base doesn’t much care for the IRS and can pretty easily be riled up to snarl at talk of embiggening it. At first, it looked like the more bipartisan-leaning Republicans would go along with it, but a conservative group has been trying to torpedo the bipartisan infrastructure deal by airing ads attacking those Republicans who looked to be going along with the IRS-boosting part of the plan. And a number of Republicans have spoken out against that part of the plan specifically. So now, that part of the plan seems to be off-the-table in the bipartisan version of the deal. I don’t know how much that matters, as the Democrats may still try to shove something like that through on their own. But they won’t have bipartisan cover to do so, so may be unable to keep their thin majority together.
- Maverick, nay, fully gonzo entrepreneur John McAfee killed himself in a jail cell while awaiting extradition to the U.S. on charges of tax evasion. He had declared his intention to refuse to pay taxes because of his objection to government policies.
- Extinction Rebellion’s “Money Rebellion” tax resistance campaign has published a sample letter that resisters can send to the tax authorities to state their demands and explain their actions.
- The on-again/off-again tax strike in South Kivu over the government’s failure to maintain transportation infrastructure appears to be on again.