Some bits and pieces from here and there:
- Taxpatriate satyagrahi Jeff Knaebel has a new (to me, anyway) website, Gandhi Swaraj Padyatra to accompany his thousand-kilometer padyatra (a sort of walking pilgrimage) to promote Gandhi’s philosophies.
- The Obama administration is floating the idea of trying to require people to convert some of their 401(k) and IRA plans into annuities. The publicly-stated theory behind this is that it would make retirement income more durable and predictible, and avoid the problems for retirees caused by stock-market collapses. Some folks suspect there’s more to it — that the government is hoping to force people to invest their retirement savings in government bonds as a way of keeping the deficit-spending catastrophe limping along. Some versions of the plan being floated by lawmakers would eliminate tax-deferred retirement accounts and replace them with a mandatory, parallel Social Security system with individual accounts that would be invested in special government bonds.
- The Philadelphia Daily News carried an obituary for long-time tax resister George Willoughby. “The Willoughbys were also tax-resisters, withholding their federal taxes to protest their use for military purposes. The IRS tapped their bank accounts to pay the taxes, but when the accounts ran dry, agents seized their 1966 Volkswagen. Friends, brandishing balloons, party horns, cookies and lemonade, invaded the IRS office in Chester and bought the car back for $900.”
- From the looks of it, tax resistance is the national pasttime in Argentina. This time, it’s shopkeepers in San Juan, who have announced a tax resistance campaign to protest the fact that the street vendors who compete with them for customers are untaxed. The mayor says it’s all a bluff, and that in fact the shopkeepers frequently divert goods to the street vendors in an attempt to evade taxes. The shopkeepers are paying their taxes into a fund that they say they will only relinquish to the government when it begins to crack down on street vendors.