(originally launched into cyberspace on 02/24/2003)
Be advised that there is a tax evasion scam now being widely promoted, which
is attempting to persuade the public that federal income taxes are
unconstitutional and need not be paid. This bogus scam is called the "861
argument" because it revolves around a gross misinterpretation of Section
861 of the Internal Revenue Code.
"This claim would be laughable if it were not hurting innocent Americans who
are seduced by the sales pitches of the scam artists promoting this scheme,"
said IRS spokesman, Edward Smith. "Section 861 quite clearly shows the
wages of most Americans to be taxable, in addition to other types of
domestic income. The 861 argument is completely baseless."
The Department of Justice has been successful in shutting down several of
those promoting this scam, but others continue to spread the claim that most
Americans are not required to pay their income taxes.
According to John Hamilton, a former IRS Commissioner, "in spite of the fact
that the claim is patently ridiculous, and the fact that many promoters of
this scam have been enjoined or imprisoned for making it, there continues to
be a handful of shameless charlattans trying to get rich from selling this
losing argument." Mr. Hamilton added, "while we'd all like our taxes to be
lower, I think it's despicable that anyone would encourage their fellow
Americans to avoid paying their fair share of what is needed to fund the
necessary government services that benefit us all."
Mr. Smith also added, "Every court which has come across this silly argument
has ruled against it, and often they have imposed fines on those raising it,
as it is frivolous and utterly baseless, and is nothing more than an attempt
to clog up the courts with tax protestor cases."
Federal officials want to make it publicly known that the "861 argument" has
no basis in law, and that those promoting it are being pursued both civilly
and criminally. The IRS encourages anyone who comes across the promoters of
this scam to report them to the IRS, and they suggest that those with
questions should consult a reputable tax professional to determine their
proper tax liabilities.
Okay... now how is your blood pressure doing? While you were reading that,
did you feel psychological discomfort (fear, anger, hopeless, etc.)? I bet
most of you did, even though it might be uncomfortable to admit it.
I wrote the fake "public notice" above, and the names and quotes are made up
(though the quotes are pretty close to things that government officials have
said). I didn't just do it to raise your blood pressure. I did it to
illustrate a few things:
Propaganda works. I knew full well that my "public notice" was full of
lies, but I bet it still had the effect on you that the feds want THEIRS to
have on you. To be blunt, most people find it very difficult and
uncomfortable to stand behind a claim or a cause when everyone around them
(especially those representing "authority") are telling them not only that
they are incorrect, but that they are stupid, dishonest, and immoral. You
cannot withstand such an attack unless you have a solid understanding of the
issue AND the spine to stand up for an unpopular truth.
Expect two MONTHS of things much like the "public notice" above, only they
will come from the government, and probably the tax preparation industry as
well. They are already gearing up their terror campaign, and it will keep
getting worse until April 15th.
This is a war of words, and since they have almost infinite resources
(having the media parrot whatever some clueless government official blurts
out), it can feel pretty hopeless. Do NOT get impatient. When you see Joe
Bureaucrat out there bashing YOU (for all your friends and neighbors to
see), it's natural to want to immediately bash back. But we can't... yet...
which can be very frustrating.
How many of YOU were swayed by my "public notice" into thinking that 861 is
wrong? There probably are a few, and those people just need to do more
homework looking into the issue. Probably the vast majority of you just got
angry, frustrated, etc. We need more people who know what YOU know, because
then they too will not be swayed (only annoyed).
How many people familiar with the 861 evidence will "unlearn" it because of
the next two months of government propaganda about it? ZERO. They may be
scared to act on it, but no one who has digested the EVIDENCE will be
disuaded by "IT'S FRIVOLOUS!!" If you understand the SUBSTANCE, nothing but
SUBSTANCE will change your mind. (And since there is no real substance on
the other side, you're in good shape.) We need more and more UNDERSTANDERS,
because they do not "defect" back under pressure.
Do not get overly anxious, angry, frustrated, etc., when the feds bombard
the public with their disinformation campaign over the next two months. We
will patiently, persistently, and unstoppably tear this fraud out by its
roots. And no amount of bureaucrat ranting will stop that.