The libertarian on-line magazine Liberty For All has
war tax resister Karl Meyer.
The author spends some time during the course of the profile talking about the
different perspectives of “progressive” activists and “libertarian” ones,
trying to bridge the gap and wondering what each can learn from the other.
After pooh-poohing the Peace Tax Fund proposals, I got to thinking of what
sorts of compromises would satisfy me and buy me off.
If a government representative, let’s call him Clyde, came to me and said “how
about this: why don’t you pay us all the tax you owe us, but we’ll make sure
to spend your tax money on something nice like a cure for cancer or
something” — that wouldn’t fool me.
But what if Clyde said “instead of paying your tax money to the
everybody else, we’re gonna let you pay your tax money directly to Amnesty
International instead — just fill out your tax forms like everybody else, but
when it comes to writing the check, write it to them, not us.”
Well, I think I’d shake Clyde’s hand and say “it’s a deal!” I don’t really
appreciate being forced to give to charity or having the government tell me
how much to give, but this would be such an improvement over the current
situation that I’d be tempted to declare a truce.
What if Clyde told me that the government was going to set up a brand new
cabinet-level Liberty & Peace Department designed to keep the rest of the
government in check, fight unconstitutional laws and figure out ways to
downsize the military, and that this new department was going to be funded by
people who checked off a box on their tax forms redirecting the whole of their
tax payments into that department. Sure I’d be cynical about a government
bureaucracy designed to curb government excess, but still… could I resist the