The Income Tax:
STILL THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL
by: Murray Sabrin
(Posted here by Wes Penre for
Illuminati News, April 16, 2004)
years ago Frank Chodorov's
The Income Tax: Root of All Evil was published. On every page, the case
against the income tax is made so convincingly that even the most ardent
supporters of the progressive income tax cannot ignore Chodorov's compelling
This remarkable little book is one of the best
critiques of the income tax. Chodorov, who was editor of the
Human Events, when it was more libertarian than conservative, made the case
against the income tax by focusing on the "original meaning" of America, namely
a nation where government was supposed to protect the people's property rights.
Even the Foreword to Chodorov's
The Income Tax: Root of All Evil, written by Utah governor J. Bracken Lee,
contains gems that would never be uttered by any state chief executive today,
demonstrating how contemporary government officials from both major political
parties have embraced big government. And since the publication of Chodorov's
classic most states have enacted an income tax to pay for redistributionist
For example, Lee writes:
The early American…was wary of government, especially one that was
out of his reach…He recognized the need of some sort of government, to
keep order, to protect him in the exercise of his rights…But, he wanted
it understood that the powers of that government would be clearly
defined and be limited; it could not go beyond specified limits. It was
in recognition of this fear of centralized power that the Founding
Fathers put into the Constitution-it never would have been ratified
without them-very specific restraints on the federal government.
In other matters, the early American was willing to put his faith in
home government, in a government of neighbors, in a government that one
could keep one’s eyes on and, if necessary, lay one’s hands on. For that
reason, the United States was founded as a Union of separate and
autonomous commonwealths. The states could go in for any political
experiments the folks might want to try out-even socialism, for that
matter-but the federal government had no such leeway. After all, there
were other states nearby, and if a citizen did not like the way one
state government was managing its affairs, he could move across the
border; that threat of competition would keep each state from going too
far in making changes or in intervening in the lives of the citizens.
then, kept the federal government off balance and weak. And a weak
government is the corollary of a strong people.
Governor Lee's foreword is must reading for all
American who care about the future of our country. His stirring words make the
current crop of governors sound like third rate political hacks.
Chodorov's words are no less inspiring.
In the American political tradition, which claims kinship with
Judeo-Christian morality, all is "evil" that violates the doctrine of
natural rights, as set down in the Declaration of Independence…The
American tradition rests its case squarely on the premise that the human
being is endowed with rights by his very existence; that is what makes
him human. Hence, any political action which attempts to violate these
rights violates his human-ness, and thus becomes "evil."
The Constitution of the United States
is a manmade instrument; it has no other sanction. Yet it has won
acceptance with Americans as the yardstick of political "good," because
it was conceived as a practical instrument for the prevention of
transgressions of our rights, either by the government or by citizens….
The Constitution, then, is
held in high esteem only because of the high esteem Americans put upon
the doctrine of natural rights. Any law, political practice, or even
amendment that infringes those rights is automatically deemed
"unconstitutional." The infringement is "evil." (Emphasis in original)
With this definition of "evil" in mind, it is the purpose of this
book to show that many laws and governmental practices are impregnated
with it, and to trace this wholesale infringement of our rights to the
power acquired by the federal government in 1913 to tax our incomes-the
Sixteenth Amendment. That is the "root."…
In the case of the practices resulting from income taxation, it will
be shown that most of them are demanded or supported by large segments
of society; the government merely compounds the evil. A people who are
intent on getting something-for-nothing from government cannot cavil
over the infringement of their rights by that government; in fact, if
the price demanded for the gratuities is the relinquishment of rights,
they are not averse to paying it. There is evidence enough that this
trade is often made, and that the government is able to enter into it
because of its income-tax revenues.
Unfortunately, Chodorov's insight fifty years
ago have been validated by a succession of Republican and Democrat
administrations. If people complain about high taxes, they do not have anyone to
blame but themselves. The people have allowed the federal government to tax them
for so-called public goods, which have expanded exponentially since the income
tax was enacted in 1913.
From the New Deal to Truman's Fair Deal to
Eisenhower's big government Republican administration to the Great Society to
Nixon's big government Republicanism to Jimmy Carter's expansion of the welfare
state to Reagan's "saving" of Social Security to George Bush's welfare-warfare
state administration to Clinton's tax hikes to G.W. Bush's welfare-warfare state
polices, all the "evil" of the past seven decades was made possible because the
federal government had the power to tax incomes directly.
To be fair and balanced, the Washington
political elite has sold a bill of goods to the American people for decades,
namely, more government spending will improve the people's lives. And inasmuch
as enough Americans believe that their elected officials are working for their
best interests, federal government spending has increased to $2.3 trillion---and
The key to reversing the "mind-set" of the
American people is for tens of millions of Americans to read Frank Chodorov's
classic. When the people demand the repeal of the Sixteenth Amendment, then
April 15th will be just another day of the year instead of a symbol
of the "evil" income tax.
If you want to rid America of the institution
that is responsible for more destruction except for war, please forward
e-book to as many people as possible. We can overturn the counterrevolution
of 1913. All the American people need is the right "ammunition".
originally at EtherZone.com :
republication allowed with this notice and hyperlink intact."
Murray Sabrin is a professor of finance
at Ramapo College of New Jersey, where he is executive director of the
Center for Business and Public Policy, and the author of Tax Free 2000: The
Rebirth of American Liberty. He was the New Jersey Libertarian Party candidate
for governor in 1997 and after rejoining the GOP after 25 years, sought the
party's nomination for the United States Senate in 2000. He is vice-chairman of
the Republican Liberty Caucus.
He is a regular columnist for Ether Zone.
He can be reached at:
Published in the April 15, 2004 issue of
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Friday, April 16, 2004 03:34:11 -0700