It never fails. Every time I write anything about taxes I get long, rambling e-mails from tax trolls who scour the Internet looking for articles about taxes so they can contact the writers and impress them with their knowledge of the tax code.

These tax trolls usually call themselves “non-taxpayers.” They say things like: paying taxes is voluntary, the Sixteenth Amendment was not properly ratified, most Americans aren’t required to pay income tax, many Americans have gotten refunds of all the money withheld from their paychecks, and the income tax is a classical liberal tax on federal employments, offices, and privileges. Sometimes they boast that they haven’t paid taxes for 10, 15, or 20 years and the IRS hasn’t done anything about it.

Let’s review the libertarian view of taxes.

The libertarian view of taxes is not that taxes should be fair, adequate, sufficient, constitutional, uniform, flat, simple, efficient, apportioned equally, or low.

The libertarian view of taxes is not that the tax code should help the poor, benefit the middle class, and be business friendly.

The libertarian view of taxes is not that taxes should not be used for social engineering purposes and income redistribution schemes.

The libertarian view of taxes is not that the tax code should not have loopholes so that everyone pays their “fair share.”

The libertarian view of taxes is simply that taxes should not exist in the first place. There should be no tax code because taxation is theft and violates the non-aggression principle.

The libertarian view of taxes is that tax increases of any kind, tax reform that is revenue neutral, tax base broadening, tax replacement of one tax with another, and tax shifting from one group of taxpayers to another are not in the least bit desirable.

The libertarian view of taxes is that the lower the taxes the better and the greater number of deductions, credits, exemptions, and loopholes the better.

This is all much ado about nothing, says the “non-taxpayer.” Libertarians miss the point on the income tax because they are not enlightened like “non-taxpayers” are. Libertarians don’t have a proper understand of the tax code.

These “non-taxpayer” tax trolls misunderstand why libertarians pay taxes. But so do liberals and conservatives. Some might reason that, on a philosophical level, if taxation is government theft, then why do libertarians pay taxes? And on a practical level, unless someone makes a lot of money, the chances of an IRS audit are low. So why do libertarians bother to pay taxes?

There are some important reasons why libertarians pay taxes. But before looking at them, perhaps it would be beneficial to look at reasons why libertarians don’t pay taxes; that is, erroneous reasons why libertarians pay taxes.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe it is just what Americans do.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they are confused about the tax code.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe the government is entitled to them for services provided.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand that the U.S. income tax cannot tax earnings from the common, ordinary occupations of life.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe paying taxes is the right thing to do.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe taxes in the United States are lower than they are in other countries.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe the Sixteenth Amendment was properly ratified.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe taxes are the price we pay for civilization.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe taxes are a necessary evil.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe the tax code requires them to.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they aren’t aware that most Americans aren’t legally required to pay income tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand the tax code.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because millions of Americans are dependent on government handouts.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they are not educated tax scholars.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe the Constitution gives the government the power to tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t know how to read the tax code.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they think it is patriotic.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they haven’t yet figured out how to lay a proper factual evidentiary foundation on how not to pay the income tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand that the federal government has no constitutional power to tax the wages of ordinary Americans.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they think the government needs the money.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t believe the income tax is part of the contract involved with acceptance of a government privilege.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t know the history of the income tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they never noticed in the withholding statute in Subchapter C of the tax code that the only people subject to withholding are government employees.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they are not enlightened about the income tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe the constitutional functions of government should be funded.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t realize what an excise tax is.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they would feel guilty if they didn’t and other Americans did.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand from Title 26, Subtitle A, that most Americans aren’t engaged in engaged in ordinary occupations liable for the income tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand the difference between a privilege and a right.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand the difference between direct and indirect taxes.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they have misinterpreted the Supreme Court tax cases.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t realize that paying taxes is voluntary.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t read the tax code with the understanding of the history of the tax.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe they have engaged in an excise taxable activity.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they don’t understand that the income tax is a classical liberal tax on federal employments, offices, and privileges.

Libertarians don’t pay taxes because they believe “non taxpayers” are screwballs.

Why, then, do libertarians pay taxes?

Libertarians pay taxes so they don’t end up in a cage like Irwin Schiff.

Libertarians pay taxes so their property doesn’t get seized by the IRS.

Libertarians pay taxes so the IRS doesn’t garnish their wages.

Libertarians pay taxes so they are not ruined financially by the IRS.

Libertarians pay taxes so they don’t get killed by an IRS agent for resisting arrest.

Libertarians pay taxes for the same reason you would hand over your wallet to someone who pointed a gun in your face and said: “Give me your money or else.”

The Constitution, the Sixteenth Amendment, Supreme Court decisions, tax court rulings, and the tax code have nothing to do with it.


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