Friday, March 20, 2009

What Aaron Russo Missed

In my previous post I linked, Aaron Russo's film: America: Freedom to Fascism.

Well, I did eventually make the trip to Wikipedia to get the Cliff Note's version on American tax laws and a link in the article led me to the bit on tax protesters. While I remain skeptical of the legality, the information on Wikipedia definitely makes a strong assertion that we are required to pay federal income taxes (note my word choice). After my spring semester ends, this is something I'd definitely like to look further into as Russo's film does not cited specific court cases, as I recall.

However, that is a bit off topic for this post. Russo's film, along with other tax protesters, miss the bigger issue in regards to the federal tax code. A popular argument against the requirement is that the 16th amendment was never properly ratified, Wikipedia disputes this claim.

The 16th amendment is objectionable, not because of claims against its ratification but because of its constitutionality. But, like Jay Leno said, "Let's just give our Constitution to the Afghans, we're not using it."

We all remember studying the Boston Tea Party and what it stood against: Taxation without Representation. Because of this strong belief when drafting the Constitution our Founding Fathers included taxation laws in the document. Most importantly (paraphrased), that taxes will be apportioned based on population of the states.

I feel that it is own these grounds that one should protest the 16th amendment; as unconstitutional in-and-of itself.

Granted this argument does not give wiggle room around tax requirements (the IRS can be quite ruthless).

The constitutionality of the 16th amendment was a key element overlooked in the film. However, I imagine if Aaron Russo was still alive, there would be an America: Freedom to Fascism Part II in which this would have been discussed.

Hopefully someone else will, since I own neither a video camera nor mad editing skills.

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