The latest news on the tax resistance beat:
- Lindsey Britt, at Waging Nonviolence, looks at the up-and-coming generation of young American war tax resisters.
- The IRS is getting desperate. It is trying to process millions of stimulus payments, implement a bunch of hastily-crafted tax law changes, and cope with a delayed tax filing season, all with a workforce that was decimated by budget cuts and then sent home to avoid infection. Now it’s begging its employees to come back to the office and offering them bonus pay, but telling them to bring their own protective equipment — even sending them information on how to create their own facemasks from old T-shirts.
- Restaurant owners in the Marche region of Italy, suffering under CoViD-lockdown closures, have launched a tax strike. “We are going on a tax strike because we can’t pay because our businesses are closed forcibly,” wrote Lucio Pompili, one of the pioneers of the strike. The strike launches this week, and aims to refuse all taxes through the end of the year.
- A similar movement is sweeping Argentina. A viral video, featuring small business-owners complaining that they cannot survive if 60% of their earnings are swept up by the government and their businesses are locked down, has touched a nerve, and the #RebeliónFiscal has spread like wildfire.
- The Catalan independence movement has relaunched a federal tax resistance campaign. Former Catalan president Carles Puigdemont has asked Catalonians to redirect the portion of their federal taxes that would otherwise go to support the Spanish monarchy, giving that money instead to the “Republican Fund for Solidarity Action” which will devote the funds to CoViD-19 relief efforts. The campaign is organized via the #ProuMonarquia site.
- I’m used to seeing on-again/off-again tax strikes in the Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Now the tactic seems to have spread to Ituri. Though a local government committee denounced the idea, a more grassroots group has insisted on withholding taxes until the government takes steps to improve security in the region.
- In France, fire and satirical art have been the weapons of choice in recent attacks on automated traffic ticket cameras, while in Germany, a tractor was used to pry such a machine from its moorings.