Recent Tax Resistance Links of Note

Some links that have slid past my browser viewport in recent days:

  • The Syracuse Post-Standard digs into its archives for a look back at a tax protest highway blockade on the Onondaga Nation.
  • One tally of Spanish war tax resisters says that last year about 500 people redirected €57,500 to 88 alternative projects, the most popular of which was Stop Mare Mortum, which assists international migrants and refugees.
  • Kirk Johnson at the New York Times looks at counties in southwest Oregon where popular anti-tax sentiment has grown to the point where citizens have been able to largely defund their local governments through the ballot box.
  • Peter J. Reilly assesses the new IRS policy of deputizing private debt companies to pursue delinquent taxpayers, and he concludes: “You Should Just Hang Up On IRS Collection Calls, Legitimate Or Not.” This is for two reasons: 1) there are still a lot of scammers out there impersonating the IRS who try to fool people into paying them money, and it may not be easy for the average Joe to distinguish “legitimate” collection calls from scammers; and 2) the “legitimate” private debt collection agencies can’t negotiate or adjudicate the amount of your debt, nor can they seize the money from you. All they can do is badger you about it. So your best bet is just to stonewall them, ignore them, and wait patiently for the statute of limitations to run out on your debt.
  • Laura Saunders, in the Wall Street Journal, notes that many online sellers and workers in the gig economy fall into an income-reporting shadow:

    A loophole is helping gig-economy workers, online sellers and home-sharing hosts cheat on their taxes.

    Under a law enacted in and later clarified by the Internal Revenue Service, many online-platform businesses that connect buyers and sellers and take credit-card payments, such as Airbnb, TaskRabbit, Etsy and ride-sharing firms, fall into a special category.

    These businesses have to report a provider’s income to the IRS only if that person earns more than $20,000 and has more than 200 transactions. In that case, the company sends both the provider and IRS a Form 1099-K listing gross income.

    By contrast, freelance workers who don’t use such platforms often face a much stiffer reporting threshold of $600 for Form 1099-MISC. For example, if a hardware store pays a plumber $750 directly for work done, the store is supposed to send both the IRS and the plumber a 1099-MISC listing that amount.

  • Here’s another example of the Greek “Won’t Pay” movement reconnecting the power at a home where the power was shut off for failure to pay the utility bill. The Greek government has hiked its monopoly’s utility charges in recent years as a sort of hidden tax.
  • Norm Lowry, at NWTRCC’s blog, shares his experiences talking with other inmates at State Correctional Institution Dallas about war tax resistance.
  • The political philosophy is a little sophomoric and pedantic, but the message is encouraging: Will Wilkinson at Vox writes: It may be time to disobey the commander in chief: With his assault on the rule of law, President Trump has undermined his legitimacy.
  • Larry Bassett, a long-time war tax resister who, because of an inheritance, engaged in an unusually-large tax refusal this year, is now also the focus of a documentary-in-progress: The Pacifist.
  • Marco Mori advocates a low-risk tax resistance strategy for Italians that seems to involve withholding taxes as long as possible, putting up with the civil penalties and interest, and only paying at the last minute before your case becomes a criminal matter. I don’t know Italian, so have to piece things together from Google Translate.
  • The shit-stirrers and would-be provocateurs at 4chan’s “/pol/” forum (which stands for “politically incorrect,” but is largely just puerile racist caricatures), struck upon the idea of trying to invent a #NoTaxForBlacks (or #NoTaxFromBlacks) movement. They would do this by means of a variety of more-or-less plausible-looking meme images, crowdsourced by the /pol/glodytes. Ostensible Black Americans (fake Twitter accounts with names like “Tyrone Johnson”) would post these, saying they were refusing to pay taxes based on roughly the same sort of grievances that have motivated #BlackLivesMatter. The way this was supposed to play out so as to titillate the 4chan crowd was that unsophisticated black people would go along with the ruse and refuse to pay tax, this would give the government an excuse to cut welfare and to arrest more black people for tax evasion, ergo much lulz for 4chan.