News & Analysis
Occupy Wall Street Sees Merit in Current Tax System?
Tax Day Doesn't Belong to the Tea Party Anymore ... Over the past several years, few annual occasions have been more symbolic of the direction of political discussion in our country than Tax Day. This year, the IRS due date bears witness to the impact of the Occupy movement in American politics. Back in 2009 and 2010, Tax Day protests were a high-water mark for the Tea Party; they were the mass actions that really put the right-wing movement on the map. But by 2011, as I wrote at the time, that was already changing. The Tea Party still had plenty to be happy about: it was coming off of midterm elections that gave Republicans control of the House, with a rabidly reactionary class of congressional freshmen. And through the summer the supposed imperative to cut back government spending—never mind the country's ongoing crisis of joblessness—would dominate Washington debate. – Dissent
Dominant Social Theme: The US tax system would be more tolerable if only everyone paid their fair share ...
Free-Market Analysis: This article from Dissent magazine was also carried by Truthout, which is a leading alternative media news source, though one that focuses on an apparently leftist interpretation of modern events.
The point the article makes is an interesting one and once more confirms our belief that the Occupy Wall Street movement is becoming a kind of anti-Tea Party movement. The Tea Party movement itself was in its original formula a populist expression of disgust with the way the US is headed.
The deepening economic recession (depression?), unemployment, endless war on terror and a political establishment that was continually more intrusive rather than less all helped trigger a spontaneous outburst of frustration. The campaign of Libertarian Congressman Ron Paul provided a focal point (and unifying force) for the initial movement.
It still exists, though it has been to a considerable extent co-opted by a political establishment that has tried to push the movement toward the profile of the GOP's pro-war "patriotism" perspective.
The Occupy movement itself, we have long been aware, is also a sort of establishment effort to co-opt the populist – and libertarian – feeling that gave rise to the Tea Party. Along with others, we've traced the money trail back to people like George Soros.
Soros, one of the world's richest men, is also a globalist who works with the dynastic banking families that are apparently trying to create world government. It is not in the interest of the elites to have anti-government social untrest, especially in a powerful country like America.
As a result, the powere elite that apparently wants to rule the world strikes back with false flag social movements intended to co-opt the real ones. Occupy Wall Street, with its emphasis on using mainstream government solutions (the current mad legal system, for instance) and enveloped in anti-market sentiments generally, is more along the lines of a "controlled" protest movement.
This doesn't mean that everyone who participates in the movement is co-opted or insincere, but at the very top the "leaders" probably have diverging agendas. They are perhaps co-opted. The powers-that-be seek out these movements and cultivate them because the power elite NEEDS government. It expands via mercantilism, passing laws that advantage its interests at the expense of others'.
Chief among the mercantilist entities that the elites have encouraged are its private/public central banks. These provide the treasury for the elites' efforts to build world government. It is this central banking trove that funds wars, buys governments and helps the elites pay to traduce movements such as the Tea Party, while setting up faux-movements such as Occupy Wall Street. Here's some more from the article:
By Tax Day 2011, a shift had started. Tea Party leading light Glenn Beck was on his way out at Fox News, having been the subject of a boycott from the left. A group called US Uncut, modeled on a British counterpart, was getting great press by going after corporate tax cheats and businesses that had managed to avoid taxes altogether. (GE, in particular, was having a very bad PR month.) Protests taking place that April were as likely to be against draconian social service cuts as against "big government" tyranny.
All of this presaged the emergence of the Occupy movement in the fall, which went much, much further in shifting the debate. As New York Times columnist Paul Krugman commented on the transformation:
[S]ix weeks ago, before [Occupy Wall Street] started, we were basically having an insane national discussion. Here we were with 14 million people unemployed, and with the government able to borrow at the lowest interest rates in history and with enormous increase in inequality—with a few people at the very top prospering immensely, and most people having made no headway, even before the crisis hit.
And yet—what were we talking about? Deficits, austerity, 'Let's cut Medicare and Social Security.' And the whole issue of, 'What about jobs? What about doing something for the vast majority of Americans?' was completely ruled out of the discussion. And now some of us —you know, I tried to write about it, other people have tried to write about—but somehow, that was not making a dent in the conversation.
And then a group of people started camping out in Zuccotti Park, and all of a sudden the conversation has changed significantly towards being about the right things. It's kind of a miracle. This year, if you say "Tax Day" and "social movement," the Tea Party isn't necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. And if you go looking for a protest, you'll likely find folks protesting against the tax evaders of the top 1 percent. As one example, members of Stand Up Chicago have been delivering faux tax bills to corporations including Boeing, Exelon, and Bank of America.
We can see from this text that taxes are being positioned within the context of such outlets as something that corporations should pay MORE of. There is no emphasis on the insanity of the current tax system as it is applied in the Western world.
No, the rhetoric of Occupy Wall Street is increasingly one of plain, old class warfare. The issue of taxes themselves are seemingly not to be discussed, only that some people (corporations) are getting away with paying less than their "fair share."
This is good rhetoric but in the era of what we call the Internet Reformation, many people are increasingly informed about the Way the World Really Works. This is especially true when it comes to central banking.
The tension between those who want to pay FEWER taxes and those who want corporations to pay their "fair share" is not going away any time. Occupy Wall Street is just sharpening the focus of the divide.
There really isn't much of a need for taxes in an era of unbridled fiat money. The government – via central banking – can print as much as is necessary to fund its operations and more. Yes, inflation is a tax – but so is an income tax.
It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the income tax is more of a methodology of government control than a necessity. And, if so, that puts Occupy Wall Street on the side of a facility that is basically a weapon of authoritarian levies.
The US government in particular is pursuing tax policies that are increasingly Draconian and restrictive. Occupy Wall Street's architects are seemingly trying to reconfigure the larger conversation so that it focuses on corporate tax-dodging. But is this really the issue? In our view, it is one reason that the movement is controversial, even within the context of the alternative media.
Conclusion: The elites, we can see in hindsight, apparently helped build a worldwide countercultural movement in the 1960s. But it is a good deal harder to manipulate people today. This is a challenge for those backing Occupy Wall Street as they get ready to re-ignite the movement as spring comes and protests expand once more.
Posted by Bischoff on 04/19/12 05:53 PM
Blade: "Governing elite get in by fraud, lies and backroom deals. Want some names? Obama comes to mind."
Bischoff: Ok, let's stay with Obama. Last I checked, he was elected with 52% of the vote. That is after all the apparent voter fraud had been discounted.
Are you shifting blame, or if you didn't vote for Obama, are you afraid to blame your fellow citizens for installing the Obama administration... ??? Obama didn't get into office by fraud, lies and backroom deals. He got into office by the power of a clueless electorate. So, let's agree to cut the crap about fraud and lies. Caveat emptor applies to elections the same way it applies to purchases.
Next, let's take what you call money power. You say, "They can make the numbers in the electronic accounts as big as they want, and no law of physics or man can stop them."
That statement clearly shows that you do not understand how currency is created today. If it wasn't for the 16th and 17th Amendment, a central bank as we have had it since 1935 wouldn't be possible. Who is responsible for the ratification of the 16th and 17th Amendments... ??? The state legislatures are responsible. However, the states would never have thrown away their voice in the U.S. Congress, if the people had strongly objected.
So, if the government can create irredeemable currency against government debt, and use its own "independent" agency in the form of the FED to distribute it through the banking system, it is something that the people seem to accept and approve, unless they are dumbed down to have lost all understanding of money matters.
When voters realize that they elected a totally clueless, egomaniacal sycophant by falling for the slogan "hope and change", they shouldn't be surprised when they get change without hope. It's easy to call it fraud. I call it stupidity to listen to mindless propaganda, but I do understand that it is hard to blame oneself for being clueless.
... and of course, when voters finally realize that voting for politicians who promise to give them stuff for which they are later forced to pay, with compounded interest added, through taxes or through inflation, it is easier to scream "foul", instead of facing the fact that the bums could have been thrown out.
Yes, there is plenty of fraud involving Solyndra, the GM and Chrysler bail out, etc., but that fraud would never have been possible, if the fiat money system had not been tolerated by the people. The trouble is that by now, the people have been so dumbed down, they wouldn't know a wooden nickel from a real nickel.
As to "Fractional Reserve Fraud". You seem to have no understanding about the difference between "Fractional Reserve Lending" or "Cash Account Banking", what the DB calls "Free Banking", and the "Fractional Reserve Requirements" set by the Fed central bank.
Fed fractional reserve requirements have absolutely nothing to do with fractional reserve lending. To perpetuate the myth that the Fed central banks can loan out ten times more money for any deposits they hold, totally neglects the fact that no one in his right mind borrows money unless he means to employ it. A little bit of thought ought to bring you to the conclusion that your statement "So in effect you loan what is not yours, which is pretty dishonest" makes really no sense when you consider that any of the irredeemable Federal Reserve Notes lent out are really monetized debt. Pure and simple, they are debt obligations. Who loans out debt... ???You can only engage in fractional reserve lending against positive assets, such as gold or silver, etc.
What you write about the internet indicates to me that you are quite familiar with servers, protocols, encryption, etc. If you are in the field of devising systems to protect against the reach of the government to control the content of the internet, I hope and wish that you do all you can do to have the government keep their hands off the internet.
Posted by BladeMcCool on 04/19/12 10:40 AM
Governing elite get in by fraud, lies and backroom deals. Want some names? Obama comes to mind.
Money power? No it is not subject to the law of physics. They can make the numbers in the electronic accounts as big as they want and no law of physics or man can stop them.
Fractional Resreve Fraud? Issuing more claims than what you have on hand is pretty much outright fraud. At best its plainly scammy, as your customers can not all claim their property at once. So in effect you loan what is not yours, which is pretty dishonest.
The internet will remain free as long as TCP/IP is a thing. Because we can always code a solution. For example there are like 5 different projects right now aiming at alternative DNS systems so their stupid little DNS takedowns will stop working pretty soon. Oh yeah, and theres that other pesky little open source project, the one about the thing with 21 million tokens, that little public ledger idea with cryptographically signed title tranfers shared publicly. That thing that literally if not stopped has the power to obviate the entire banking sector including central banks. ... doesnt need to be named here.
Posted by Agent Weebley on 04/19/12 10:35 AM
You said: "I absolutely agree that we must be diligent in our effort to keep the internet "free". The best way to do that is to communicate with words and concepts that are clearly defined, rather than with slogans of dubious meanings."
Oh my God, you are so right arm there, Mr B . . . f . . . fer sure, fer sure . . . gag me with a spoon on that dubeyus comment!
Click to view link
Posted by Bischoff on 04/19/12 08:17 AM
"Governing elite"... ??? How does this governing elite come about... ??? Are there any names... ??? How does the governing elite operate... ???
"Money Power"... ??? What is it... ??? How do you quantify it... ??? Is it subject to any laws of physics, or is it just an imaginary concept... ???
"Fractional reserve fraud"... ??? I didn't know that "legal tender" protection had been lifted from the Federal Reserve Note. Since I am sure that it hasn't, can you tell me about the "fractional reserve fraud" to which you refer.
"As the Reformation moves forward we must be diligent; because the Elites will get increasing agile in their attacks on the 1st Amendment."
I absolutely agree that we must be diligent in our effort to keep the internet "free". The best way to do that is to communicate with words and concepts that are clearly defined, rather than with slogans of dubious meanings.
Posted by budwood on 04/19/12 12:49 AM
Yes, I too believe that Bischoff's comments adds much good information to these discussions. And, certainly, having these discussions is a great service provided by the Daily Bell. My complements to all involved.
Posted by kktemecula on 04/19/12 12:18 AM
Taxes are certainly a volatile subject during mid-April every year. However, we must understand why both the left and right are so consumed by it. Sure, we pay the taxes with money but take the money equation out and the real reason is revealed. That is; tax policy by government allows a vehicle with which to conduct social engineering. To the extent that wealth is confiscated through taxation by the governing elites, Money Power can continue to tighten its grip. And like lemmings we write that check or watch it taken from us weekly.
I smell a Hegelian dialectic with Banksters filching middle class wealth through fractional reserve fraud and money printing and CONgress digging into our other pocket as we are marched to the alter of World Government. The only weapon we posses is a free Internet. As the Reformation moves forward we must be diligent; because the Elites will get increasing agile in their attacks on the 1st Amendment.
Posted by W Gary Johnson on 04/18/12 11:33 PM
The reason you don't see Tax Day protests like you used to is because too many people e-file. I remember the circus atmosphere outside our main post office, with direct marketers handing out samples and coupons and protesters of every stripe handing out flyers. Especially the War Resisters League, which would always have something showing how much of our money goes for weapons. This year, there were no tv trucks, no free samples of anything and no War Resisters League. There were lines of last minute filers, to be sure. But the lines were probably shorter than you would find waiting to go through security at some airports.
Posted by Bischoff on 04/18/12 08:54 PM
LOL... ."like the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz."
The Wizard of Oz is all about the kind of money we have... ..
Heard of the yellow brick road... .????
Posted by Abu Aardvark on 04/18/12 07:00 PM
DB: "in the era of what we call the Internet Reformation, many people are increasingly informed about the Way the World Really Works. This is especially true when it comes to central banking."
US author-activist Naomi Wolf seems to acknowledge this process of late. In a recent, chilling analysis of by now regular tools "to control the masses" - US style - she wrote, "Why is this happening? I used to think the push was just led by those who profited from endless war and surveillance - but now I see the struggle as larger. As one internet advocate said to me: "There is a race against time: they realise the internet is a tool of empowerment that will work against their interests, and they need to race to turn it into a tool of control."
Click to view link
Reply from The Daily Bell
Posted by Bischoff on 04/18/12 06:49 PM
I fully believe the description of your experience is true. However, what you describe is the nature of popular discourse.
If the discourse takes place in a small assembly on the local level, where people know each other from daily personal contact, the decision made by such a group will always be superior to any decision made as the result of mass propaganda.
Certain interests are always ready to achieve concensus by bombarding people with propaganda to appeal to their emotions. When that happens, it becomes doubly important to stay cool, and to let reason and logic prevail. This can be done in small tea party assemblies. It cannot be done in mass assemblies of the OWS movement.
Posted by Libertarian Jerry on 04/18/12 06:38 PM
The Income Tax serves many purposes. The most important ones are to gather personal financial information on American citizens,to control the standard of living of the Middle Classes and their inheritors,to collect the interest on the debts owed to Bond holders and to control,to a limited extent,inflation. In today's day and age,as your article implies,Fiat Currency rules the roost. The government,through its privately owned Central Banks,can print all the money it needs and more. In the end its all about power. The real people in power,the people behind the curtain,gain and keep their power with the ability to create money out of thin air. Take away that money creation power and the elite globalists will melt away like the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz.
Reply from The Daily Bell
Amen, brother. Begins and ends with monopoly central banking ...
Posted by Bischoff on 04/18/12 06:32 PM
N: "Thanks for the post Mr. Bischoff. I always look foreward to your teachings."
B: Thank you for your nice comment.
The sad part is that we as a people have failed to be vigilent about the politicians upholding their oaths to follow the provisions of the U.S. Constitution.
No matter what anyone believes, the U.S. Constitution is as relevant to today's government, as it was to the U.S. government established in 1789. The U.S. Constitution is based on natural law and establsihed to guard against the detriments and excesses of basic human nature. Nothing has changed, either in natural law, nor in human nature since the U.S. Constitution was written 225 years ago.
It took decades upon decades for the people to lose their understanding about the personal liberty and the security of private property the U.S. Constitution was meant to guarantee for them.
Jefferson once said, "for a society to be ignorant and to be free, is something that never was or ever will be."
If any of us ever want to be helpful in the cause to return to the intent of the original Constitution, it is to talk about the 16th and 17th Amendments, and the damage these two amendments caused the original intent of this remarkable document. People today, especially young people, are very disillusioned with the two political parties interpreting, presenting and applying the provision of the original Constitution.
They don't not understand that the politicians of both parties propagandize the voters to hand them authority to plunder the fruits of their own labor. It's extraordinary when you look at it in this way.
Democrats without doubt stand for big government and wealth redistrubition, and they have plenty of people to vote for them provided something is in it for them. Yet, the Republican establishment is just as much a lover of big government as any of the Democrats. IOW, party politics wins out again and again to favors the plunderer. The great mass of the voters never seem to catch on. The propaganda is so sophisticated that it takes an incredibly grounded individual to resist it. Enough of the voters are always bamboozled to vote for big government in contrast to their own best interest. When all trust in the two party system is lost, the voters start basing their decision on a politician's looks and charisma. When that happens, it is easy to see how an Adolf Hitler or a Benito Mussolini could be elected.
Is that what Washington, Knox, Green, Lafayette and Hamilton faught for in the Revolutionary War... ??? To allow a charismatic dictator to be popularly elected by the people... ???
You cannot give up on the people, however. Washington, Jefferson and Franklin never did, though they had to deal with propaganda and disinformation as to their cause as well. In the end, it was never more than 10% of the people which identified themselves as American patriots.
The state of "enlightment" of the members of the separate tea party organizations cannot be generalized. Their quality and clear goals cannot be generalized. However, each of the tea party organization needs leadership. Those of us who have a firm conviction about the need to return to the original Constitution owe it to our fellow Americans to put as much information out there as possible.
In that regard, I want to express my appreciation to The Daily Bell for providing this forum.
Posted by whatevertrevor on 04/18/12 05:34 PM
Thanks for reminding me of this meme DB.
Sometimes, some memes need repeating as we can forget and get sucked into false arguments.
The idea that taxation does not need to exist in most countries for financing public works needs to be repeated often.
It gets better though. It's not just money printing which can pay for private works. The revenue from the government's business enterprises exceeded that of its tax intake at some time in the 90s if I remember correctly.
There was a video on google video on The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) in the year 2000.
It explains that since the second world war both the US and UK governments started investing in businesses themselves. The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) includes both business intake and tax intake. The latter is public and the former is, of course, not (unless you ask for it that is hehehe).
An example link is here: Click to view link
But just google text or video "The Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR)"
Reply from The Daily Bell
Great points, thanks.
Posted by Nightcrawler on 04/18/12 05:07 PM
Thanks for the history lessons.
I've gone to a few tea partys and at first found them to be inspiring. Soon tea partiers found themselves defending absurd claims of racism. Someone didn't want the argument about the size and waste of government.
Next the Republicans courted the movement and got swept into power with their support. In the meantime, the tea party functions themselves became pro military, pro patriotic and fascist.
When they had to perform last August and stop the borrowing and spending they failed miserably.
Anyone who was awakened before has not gone to sleep. The tea party says they are working at the local level to get constitutional conservatives elected. My hope is that strategy will work.
My path has led to the Ron Paul campaign as I'm sure many others have.
I agree that the repeal of the 16th and 17th ammendments are a necessary step. Along with so much hidden history brought back to light.
TPTB appear to be hell bent on getting exchange credits completely digitalized so as to conceal the volume.
Thanks for the post Mr. Bischoff. I always look foreward to your teachings.
Reply from The Daily Bell
Trust no one.
Posted by Bischoff on 04/18/12 04:05 PM
J: "The tea party folks are scared of what is coming."
B: ..and so they should be. I agree that taxes need not be of great concern, if your ultimate mission is to return government power to the local level.
However, you fail to understand that my comments are less about taxes, but more about "money".
It is little understood that the original Federal Reserve legislation did not favor the interests of the big banks. The Republican leader Senator Aldridge held up passage of the legislation. He only relented after the 16th and 17th Amendments had been ratified. When the FRA finally passed, the states had gotten their way, and President Wilson signed it the 1913 FRA.
The big banks right away violated the original FRA. They had supported the ratification of the 16th and 17th Amendments favored by the Progressive Movement. Why... ???
The big banks resented the RBD currency creation and high gold reserve requirements of the 1913 FRA. In 1920, the FRBNY started to illegally sell government gold bonds in secondary markets. In short, they surreptiously inflated the currency.
What made it possible for them to get away with it... ??? It was the 16th Amendment. Anyone buying government bonds in a secondary market wants to know that the bonds will be able to pay the interest and return the principal. The 16th Amendment put the U.S. taxpayers up as security.
What about the 17th Amendment... ??? The founding fathers had for weeks battled over the representation of the states in the U.S. legislature during the Constitruional Convention in 1787. It finally was decided that U.S. Senators were to be "selected" by the democratically elected state legislatures. The 17th Amendment did away with the voice of the state government in Washington, and replaced it with "popularly elected" U.S. Senators no longer answerable to state governments. Senators who could be recalled by their state legislatures, because they failed to look out for the interests of the state, now had a six year secute tenure. After the ratification of the 17th Amendment, banks were the largest contributors to U.S. Senatorial campaigns. I wonder why... ???
When the 1913 FRA currency collapsed in 1933, the U.S. Senate passed the Banking Act in 1935 to create the "Federal Reserve" as an agency of the U.S. government which creates a Federal Reserve Note no longer redeemable. It is a currency that is based on "monetized" government debt.
However, such negative value currency must collapse sooner or later because the debt needed to create it is subject to compound interest. The present Federal Reserve Note is done for. To get out of this mess, the best way is to go back to the original FRA and give the franchise to create a national currency to the credit unions.
Do any of the tea party patriots you associate with understand what I just pointed out... ??? I don't think so, because the TP organization with which I associate have the same propaganda drummed into their heads as has been drummed into yours.
Yet, there is natural law, and what the TP party people will be forced to realize that it is the 16th and 17th Amendments which have perverted the ideas and intentions of the founding fathers, and that the Constitution will only reflect the original intent when the 16th and 17th Amendments are repealed.
See... .the 16th and 17th Amendment are not about "taxes". They are about "honest" money, which allows you to enjoy the fruits of your labor, and about de-monetized currency which stealthily robs you of your wealth.
I am trying as hard for the tea party people to get their head around these facts.
Posted by gabe on 04/18/12 03:18 PM
I was a Ron paul supporter in 2007-2008 and when I went to some of the early tea party events in Boston.
It was clear that there were free-market/anti-interventionist folks there... people I was familiar with and then there was a large more zombified group of FOX News type viewers and local fox news type radio folks with permits/stages adn microphones trying to re-direct the energy of the event into a pro-war standard GOP direction.
The tea party was not monolithic. There was a energized movement of anti-war, anti-fed, anti-big-government people... it was hi-jacked and smeared using methods that should be familiar to anyone who has been following political events closely in this country.
Posted by josejoe on 04/18/12 03:04 PM
no one is going to raise the tax on the 'elites'. what little taxes they pay (the super rich) isn't even for 'show'. someone in their brain trust screwed up. the so called buffet rule is a ruse for the benefit of the 'mentally shortchanged'!
Posted by Jackson on 04/18/12 02:11 PM
When the dollar collapses and the U.S. defaults on its deficit debt, there will hopefully be opportunity to repeal the 16th/17th amendments and replace government by bureaucracy with the original republic. One can only hope.
I've been involved in the sponsorship of three local tea parties and they are not about taxes. They are a demand for sound money, limited government and free enterprise. Taxes are only an issue to the extent that they relate to those key objectives. The tea party folks see the cliff we are headed over and we would like to save the country.
Posted by Jackson on 04/18/12 02:06 PM
When the dollar collapses and the U.S. defaults on its deficits, there will likely be a good opportunity to repeal the 16th/17th amendments and recover the republic from government by bureaucracy. I've been involved in three years of tea party sponsorship and the parties are not about taxes. The popular protest is a demand for sound money, limited government and free enterprise. Taxes are only an issue to the extent that they relate to those crucial objectives. The tea party folks are scared of what is coming.
Posted by jwoop66 on 04/18/12 01:07 PM
Ok. This time it worked. Lets try again...
"No, the rhetoric of Occupy Wall Street is increasingly one of plain, old class warfare."
Increasingly, my ass. This has been obvious since before the first "protester" ever hit the street.