“Tithe Tax” – A Tax Reform Proposal – by Art Helms
The 16th Amendment (the income tax amendment) passed into law in 1913. By any common understanding, this amendment is an obvious violation of the “Apportionment” and “Enumeration” clauses of Article I, Section 2, of the Constitution. Congress now had virtually unlimited power to “lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.” Congress now had freedom to reinterpret the “Spending” and “Uniformity” clauses of Article I, Section 8, as they saw fit.
The Federal Reserve Act, also passed by Congress in 1913, allowed Congress freedom to reinterpret the “Borrowing” clause of Article I, Section 8. With these two new powers in the hands of Congress, and the Federal Reserve System, “Reason” exited.
With the passage of these two bills into law, Congressman Charles A. Lindbergh Sr. warned “From now on, depressions will be scientifically created.”
The 16th Amendment, implemented, fits exactly with the 2nd of 10 planks of the Communist Manifesto “A heavy progressive or graduated income tax.“. The Federal Reserve System fits with the 5th tenet “Centralization of credit in the hands of the state, by means of a national bank with state capital and an exclusive monopoly.”
“No taxation without representation” was the rallying cry of the United States Revolutionary war. The phrase, “taxation without representation is tyranny”, coined by James Otis, of that era, best represents the dissent of our Colonial ancestors.
The Atlantic Ocean separated them from their representative government. Today, with our representative government with us on the same continent, we are still hearing that sentiment. The problem was not then, nor is it now, distance or geological barrier. Oppressive taxation with representation is still tyranny.
At the Federal level, massive taxing, spending, and borrowing caused our national public debt to reach an “unsustainable” 12.8 trillion dollars in 2009. That year, there were over 67,000 pages in our US Tax Code. This year; 2013, there are just under 74,000 pages in the federal tax codes. By the end of 2014, the gross US federal government debt is expected to be over 18 trillion dollars. From the Wall Street Journal to National Public Radio, everyone is saying, “We Still Need a Simpler Tax Code.”
Albert Einstein, who died back in the 1950s, said that filing tax forms “. . . is too difficult for a mathematician. It takes a philosopher.” Today, filing tax forms has stumped even the philosophers.
At state and local levels, our representatives tax us with State Income Tax, Sales and Use Tax, Franchise Tax, Property Tax, Poll Tax, Land Value Tax, Estate Tax, Inheritance Tax, Gift Tax, Ad Valorem Tax, and ad infinitum tax.
G.K. Chesterton, in his 1928 review of the book, The Open Conspiracy, by H.G. Wells, said “. . . the real difficulty of representative government is how to make it representative, even in the smallest of small nationalities, even in the nearest parish council.”
Chesterton had the key. Make government representative “even in the nearest parish council.”
To that end, it would behoove Americans to rise up and demand that all American government entities cooperate together to: (1.) establish local level, locally accountable, and locally elected tax authorities — one for each county of every state; (2.) set an immediate, and permanent income tax ceiling of 10% for all individual and corporate taxpayers; (3.) with the exception of tariffs on foreign goods and services, phase out, over a period of 3 years, all other local, state, and federal tax forms and systems; (4.) require that a common, permanently fixed, 10% of the locally collected taxes be paid to each of their respective states’ single tax authority; and (5.) require a common, permanently fixed, 10% of each state’s collected taxes be paid to a single federal tax authority.
It will be said that this “Tithe Tax” system is oversimplified. No, what we have now is overcomplicated.
The means of accomplishing this mandate on our government entities would be a huge complication, of course! But this system, putting our elected representatives on fixed incomes, could be the best way to force them to drastically cut spending and borrowing. Can we not all agree that a “Back to the Basics” reorganization of our out-of-control governments would set us back on course? Surely, we can agree that all of our politicians need to learn the basic principle of “Living Within Your Means.”
Probably the greatest benefit to this system of taxation would be that wealth would be redistributed back into the hands of those who earn it.
Please don’t give me your millions of reasons as to why this concept will not work. Instead, why not scratch your head, and come up with how and why it could work? Wouldn’t it be better to work toward salvaging the American idea, rather than to watch it die?