By Nathan Barton
This year, Americans will have stolen from them over $3.5 trillion in federal taxes and another $1.6 trillion in state and local taxes. That’s $5.1 trillion total — more than we spend on food, clothing and shelter combined. A staggering 31% of our income. (So calculates the Tax Foundation.)
On average (a VERY important point), that is 113 days into the year, counting holidays. In practical terms, assuming we all worked the “standard” 2000 hours per year, that means that 620 hours of our 2000 working hours (not counting vacation time), or nearly 1/3 of our “productive time” goes to support government. (And not very well – since government must borrow additional trillions to “stay afloat.” Or so the politicians say.)
It is as if we were all one-third slaves.
Of course, I am speaking of averages and in general. There are millions of Americans who pay much less in taxes. And I’m not talking about wealthy. No, there are some who don’t even pay the 4% to 10% sales tax on the food and other products they buy, because those purchases are subsidized. So many people pay much much more than 31% of their wages, salaries, and interest in taxes to the feds, the states, and every sort of imaginable local government there is. And there are other people who live as parasites on the people and businesses of this land. Not just the welfare under-class, either. The bureaucrats and the companies who feed off government are just as parasitical, although the “kinder, gentler” term to use would be symbiotes. At least as far as government is concerned, but a dollar is a dollar and a hour is a hour – whether that is used to pay a bureaucrat, a welfare-beneficiary, a politician or a company providing goods and services to government.
Some people tell us that paying taxes is NOT the same as being enslaved, but I have a hard time understanding this. If I have to give the money I earn for more than 2 out of 8 hours each working day, for which I may (or may not) receive services, but over which I have little or no control, what is the difference? Sure, the working conditions MIGHT be better, but not all dem slaves was pickin’ cotton in the field, bro.
Jesus pointed this out once, a bit subtly. After Jesus and his disciples arrived in Capernaum, the collectors of the two-drachma tax came to Peter and asked, “Doesn’t your teacher pay the temple tax?” “Yes, he does,” he replied. When Peter came into the house, Jesus was the first to speak. “What do you think, Simon?” he asked. “From whom do the kings of the earth collect duty and taxes– from their own sons or from others? “From others,” Peter answered. “Then the sons are exempt,” Jesus said to him. (Matthew 17:24 and following) Kings do not make their sons (or daughters) slaves.
It is those that they have dominion over – the power of life and death – who pay taxes. Slaves could be and were killed if they did not provide the labor that they were obligated, by their slavery, to give. And ultimately, it is the power to destroy – to imprison and kill – that supports our taxation today.
So, who are the kings and the sons of kings in the Fifty States today? Even the politicians and the bureaucrats, soldiers and contractors, pay taxes on their income: the only ones who do not seem to be the “dependents” – the welfare-recipients and the children. Are they the sovereigns here? Or are the taxes paid by the bureaucrats and politicians and the like just camouflage – after all, their money is stolen to begin with, so why should they care if they have to (officially, at least) pay part of it “back to the government?”
If “We The People” really were the powers in charge, as supposedly the Constitution makes clear, then we would not be paying 31% – or even 10% or 5% – in taxes.
The power to destroy (whether through taxes or direct force) is one more thing that government has stolen from the people – from each individual person that works. It may be concealed and the powers that be may also appear to pay taxes, and therefore be enslaved. But it is still dominion, slavery, and we can find no moral justification for it.
Mama’s Note: There’s another side to that bad coin. All tax is theft, no question, but I submit to you the idea that non-voluntary government regulations and “laws” are an even greater theft, and an even greater proof of our enslavement. Von Mises Institute has lots of information on this. Our Huge Hidden Tax: Government Regulations is a good place to start if anyone wants more information.
And then… how many of these so-called government “services” do people really want? Especially the people who actually pay for it all? I can’t think of anything. You?