Liberal sneering at your money: Tax rebate & the growth of government
Liberals are sneering at President George W. Bush’s tax rebate. Imagine…returning income to the taxpayer! From their pink parlors they poke fun at this money like it was some sort of national joke. Liberals in Congress are blaming the rebate, with malice of forethought, for the whittling down of the beloved budget surplus they were planning on scarfing up like a blue plate special when Congress reconvenes in September. Shouldn’t government, like the rest of us, tighten its belt during a recession? Unthinkable! Liberals consider government growth as sacrosanct. When did this growth begin to outpace that of the productive private sector and what started the government on this road toward becoming the largest industry the world has ever known?
It all got started on February 3, 1913, when the Wyoming legislature ratified the Sixteenth Amendment, the last of the thirty six states required for ratification, which authorized our Federal government to directly tax the income of the productive citizen. The graduated income tax, an idea articulated in the Communist Manifesto, had been explicitly unconstitutional up until that date. Article I of the Constitution states that: “direct taxes shall be apportioned among the several States…No capitation or other direct tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census.” Until that date, the government was funded primarily by tariffs on trade and a few excise taxes on whiskey and other commodities. The Sixteenth Amendment would be the first time in 43 years that the Constitution would be altered.
The graduated income tax would extract higher taxes from the earner relative to his income. This Marxist idea, one of the planks of the Manifesto, empowers the government to transfer the “surplus capital” of the achieving wealth creator to itself in the name of “the people.” The confiscation allows for the development of a rich and powerful ruling elite, which, in turn, pays off a growing number of clients who then have a direct interest in perpetrating the gravy train. The transfer also serves to effect a gradual erosion of private ownership.
A previous attempt by the government to implement the income tax, 1894-1895, was struck down by the Supreme Court as unconstitutional. Justice Stephen Field wrote an opinion that speaks for itself: “The present assault on capital is but the beginning. It will be but a stepping stone to others, larger and more sweeping, till our political contests will become a war of the poor against the rich; a war constantly growing in intensity and bitterness. If the Court sanctions the power of discriminating taxation, and nullifies the uniformity mandate of the Constitution, it will mark the hour when the sure decadence of our government will commence.”
President Woodrow Wilson would euphemistically call this new power to tax “The New Freedom.” The same Orwellian tactic is employed today when, for example, the Kennedy Library gives it’s “Profile in Courage” award to a politician, such as former New Jersey Governor James Florio, for having the “courage” to raise taxes. The term “freedom” actually described the loss of freedom that resulted in direct taxation. Likewise the use of the term “courage” by the Kennedy’s to describe taxes. Politicians, like the Kennedy’s want our government to demonstrate greater “courage.”
The Sixteenth Amendment would completely transform the nature of our government and how we view its role. The founding fathers debated, at the Constitutional Convention of 1788-1789, whether or not the National government should be a Republic or a Democracy. They chose the republican form of limited government with the mode of production residing with the productive sovereign citizen. The Sixteenth Amendment would turn our form of government into a Democracy, with the government taking control over the mode of production and, as such, the wealth of the nation.