LP.org: Income tax anniversary is another day that will live in infamy

Posted at LP.org:

All persons are entitled to keep the fruits of their labor. We call for the repeal of the income tax, the abolishment of the Internal Revenue Service and all federal programs and services not required under the U.S. Constitution.

Oct. 3 is the anniversary of the costliest law ever enacted upon American taxpayers. On that day in 1913, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Revenue Act of 1913, the first post–Civil War income tax. Once constitutional objections to an income tax were eliminated by the 16th Amendment, Congress wasted little time in passing one. The tax started out at 1–2 percent for most middle-income people and topped out at 7 percent for inflation-adjusted incomes of $11,010,700.

“What’s interesting is that the income tax was passed in conjunction with a lowering of tariffs from 40 percent to 25 percent,” said Libertarian National Committee Chair Nicholas Sarwark, who is also currently a Phoenix mayoral candidate. “Today, income tax rates range from 10 percent all the way to 37 percent — and that’s after the 2017 tax reductions. To add insult to injury, the Trump administration, acting with little participation from Congress, is bringing back tariffs that are nearly as high as they were before we had an income tax.”

The U.S. unemployment rate in 1913 was 4.3 percent, and there was essentially no inflation because of the gold standard. Per capita economic output was the highest in the world. The streets were paved. Cities were electrified and had fresh water and modern sewerage systems. We had inter-city rail service. We had the world’s largest industrial sector. Immigration was mostly open, except for unfortunate xenophobic restrictions on Chinese and Japanese immigrants. Hundreds of thousands of immigrants, mostly from Europe, arrived every year. The average person could live large. All this was possible even though the federal government spent only about 3 percent of Gross Domestic Product, including a tiny deficit. State and local governments did not spend much more.

Today, after 105 years of government growth, the unemployment rate average over the last five years is about 5.2 percent. Today, according to the World Bank, the United States ranks eighth in GDP per capita behind Luxembourg, Switzerland, Macao, Norway, Iceland, Qatar, and Ireland. Our infrastructure is deteriorating. We rank second to China in industrial production. We’ve choked off most immigration. And now, according to the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal, federal taxes amount to 25.1 percent of GDP. At the same time, federal spending has increased to 41.6 percent of GDP, producing year after year of vast deficits both on and off the books.

“A 13-fold increase in per capita federal spending has benefited government bureaucrats and crony capitalist insiders in the defense, intelligence, education, and medical care industries,” Sarwark said. “It hasn’t done much for the common person.”

The approximately 800 Libertarians running for local, state, and federal office this year will all work to reduce the size and scope of government at all levels.

16 thoughts on “LP.org: Income tax anniversary is another day that will live in infamy

  1. DJ

    AD: Don’t cite the Heritage Foundation. They’ve gone full Trump flunky.

    Me: Knowledge isn’t biased in its origin. If the info is accurate what does the source have to do with it?
    Oh, never mind- my bad. I forgot the tactic of attack the messenger. My apology.

  2. Anthony Dlugos

    “If the info is accurate what does the source have to do with it?’

    Should I go all the way back to politics 101?

    Of course the source matters. There are 10,000 district attorneys past and present that don’t put people of questionable character on the stand regardless of the veracity of his/her information.

  3. Anthony Dlugos

    I should add that I just read a request for donations letter that I got from Heritage earlier this week.

    Heritage used to be a decent organization, albeit conservative, but generally pro-immigrant and pro-free trade.

    This sad request for donations was ham-handed Trump blather more in keeping with the most unctuous political organizations. Build the wall, secure the border, protect american manufacturing with tariffs, etc. etc, etc.

  4. paulie Post author

    Yeah, they and the rest of the conservative movement devolving to that movement’s original authoritarian roots. Past time for libertarians to cut any and all ties completely. It’s like a boat anchor on libertarianism, and it’s dragging us down to the bottom, at an accelerating pace.

  5. Anthony Dlugos

    Just to clarify, its not the worse thing in the world to cite Heritage on government spending relative to GDP, mainly because the facts of that matter are not really in dispute, even by liberals.

    But citing Heritage leaves open a line of attack because of it being a Trump flunky organization. Cite Cato, or the CBO, or some liberal-leaning organization that has the same facts on government spending

  6. DJ

    AD: Of course the source matters. There are 10,000 district attorneys past and present that don’t put people of questionable character on the stand regardless of the veracity of his/her information.

    Me: I didn’t realize this is a court- the questionable character, IMNSHO, is one who attacks the messenger vs the message. Knowledge isn’t biased in its origin- the bias is in the presenter, in this case, you, because- Trump.

  7. DJ

    paulie: I wouldn’t waste time trying to explain that or anything else to DJ. YMMV, of course.

    Me: Pussy. can’t handle opposing views.

  8. DJ

    AD: But citing Heritage leaves open a line of attack because of it being a Trump flunky organization. Cite Cato, or the CBO, or some liberal-leaning organization that has the same facts on government spending

    Me: LOL- yeah, liberals have so much credibility- LOL

  9. DJ

    Liberal cedibility-

    Matt DeFouw was taken aback when his son, a high school student, texted him a picture of an assignment that had been given to his class. The 10th-grade students at Valleyview Secondary School in Kamloops, a city in British Columbia, Canada, were supposed to be learning about differing views in partisan politics — but instead, they seemed to be getting schooled on the biased political stance of the person who had prepared the lesson.

    DeFouw took to his Facebook page on Monday to post his son’s assignment, writing “I cannot let this slide. It must be exposed, discussed, and then expediently rectified.” Explaining the image, he said his son whited out his answers and wrote the teacher-provided answers in their place.

    https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/father-calls-sons-political-spectrum-assignment-pushing-political-agenda-onto-students-1984-esque-propaganda-163552305.html

  10. Anthony Dlugos

    “I didn’t realize this is a court- the questionable character, IMNSHO, is one who attacks the messenger vs the message. Knowledge isn’t biased in its origin- the bias is in the presenter, in this case, you, because- Trump.”

    Again, I don’t know far back into basic politics I have to go with you.

    There is a reason “the court of public opinion” is regularly referred to in political discussion. Going after the source of material in a public policy debate is a tried and true tactic. It works. You can undermine a case for a position…sometimes a legit case, as with government spending…by going after the source of the material used.

    However, I think you are more than aware of this, as your post of October 4, 2018 at 14:02 proves. There, you imply an attack on liberal outlets due to the source itself, regardless of the material.

    Thus, my guess is that you understand what I am arguing, but just don’t have a problem with citing the Trump flunky organization Heritage specifically BECAUSE you prefer such an attachment.

  11. paulie Post author

    Again, I don’t know far back into basic politics I have to go with you.

    Infinitely far, as far as I can tell.

  12. Anthony Dlugos

    well, to reiterate, I give DJ more credit than to think he doesn’t know how selecting your sources sends an additional message, over and above the message itself.

    you can be sure that if the LP cited ThinkProgress or the Huff Post, he wouldn’t be so…objective, regardless of the underlying data.

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