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Thread: Is There Such Thing As A Moral Tax?

  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Legend1104 View Post
    I believe that, in an ideal world, a governmental system is set up with the strict purpose of protecting our life, liberty, and property.
    If people ever arrived at the point where this is achievable, you won't need to use violence to fund defense services.

    Whenever it exceeds these stipulations, then the taxation is theft and immoral.
    Taxation is always theft. This is proven by the simple fact that it is funded through force. If it was voluntary, force would not be required.

    It is true that State apologists maintain that taxation is "really" voluntary; one simple but instructive refutation of this claim is to ponder what would happen if the government were to abolish taxation, and to confine itself to simple requests for voluntary contributions. Does anyone really believe that anything comparable to the current vast revenues of the State would continue to pour into its coffers?- Murray Rothbard

    It should never be expanded to build roads, infrustructure, welfare, social security, and all of the other junk. If they want roads then they either need to start a business to do it, or have a local government provide for it (talking about roads, infrustructure, and schools, not the other stuff).
    If you get enough people to accept this, then it would be proof that an overwhelming majority of people have had a profound revelation. What I mean is, if most people accept the pure minarchist position, then there need not be any fear of criminal voluntary defense agencies, etc. Any corrupt defense service could not last in a society full of minarchist libertarians.

    To say that 95% of the population is liberty oriented enough to achieve the voluntarization of roads, schools, social security, etc., but then claim that these very same people are too evil or ignorant to produce voluntary defense services, is a contradiction.

    Another point: in my view, we are about as likely to achieve minarchy as we are to achieve anarchy. I.e., both are remote possibilities. What is striking is that almost every criticism of "impracticality" that minarchist hurl at anarchy is also true of minarchy itself. Both are exceedingly unlikely. Both require massive changes in views among millions of people. Both rest on presumptions that most people simply don't care much about.- Stephan Kinsella

    If people don't like that system then (like John Locke advocated) they have the right to move somewhere else.
    This neglects the question of who legitimately owns the property in the first place. If I homestead a piece of land, and then someone arbitrarily declares me under their jurisdiction, it would be absurd to call it justice that I move if I don't want to be apart of their system. Or if someone arbitrarily claims jurisdiction to land they have not legitimately acquired, then any use of violence to enforce this claim is nothing more than a criminal act.

    Quote Originally Posted by Krugerrand View Post
    I'd like to see voluntary taxes.
    This is a contradiction.

    And here is Ron Paul on taxes and private defense:

    The government is incapable of doing what it's suppose to do. A job like the provision of security is something best left to private institutions. - Ron Paul, Liberty Defined page 70

    We might reflect on how we achieve security in our everyday lives. We have locks on our doors, provided by private manufacturers. We use privately provided alarm systems. We depend on the idea that others are going to drive safely, and the incentive to do so comes from a private system of insurance. Some people own and carry guns for security. Their efforts help everyone by deterring criminality. Commercial establishments such as banks and jewelry stores hire private security guards. Malls and subdivisions have their own security apparatus. - Ron Paul, Liberty Defined pages 254-255

    If we reflect on how security works in the real world, we discover a huge and important role for private enterprise, and we find that the vast government apparatus of "national security" does not keep us safe so much as threaten our liberties by regarding the entire citizenry as a threat. Private security does not threaten our civil liberties, but government-provided security does. - Ron Paul, Liberty Defined pages 254-255

    A free society, valued by the people, would be adequately defend by volunteers, without age, sex, or any other restrictions. - Ron Paul, Liberty Defined page 51

    If we as a nation continue to believe that that paying for civilization through taxation is a wise purchase and the only way to achieve civilization, we are doomed.- Ron Paul, Liberty Defined, Page 284 (Ron Paul has also repeatedly said elsewhere that taxation is theft )



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  3. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by truelies View Post
    Personally, I would tax heavily Capital being used only for financial speculation, with a similar tax on holders of Land to the extent that increases in the Land's value come not from the labour of the owner but from the interactions of society as a whole. Perhaps a small tax on incomes and sales to build/maintain/operate facilities of value to the community as a whole- roads, schools and the like. Then too there is the sovereign power of the community to issue currency as required for the common good. A State stripped of the 'bread & circuses' and elective war functions is neither expensive nor immoral.
    Looks like i have a fellow geoist on the boards. :-)

    I'm sure you've heard the Milton Friedman quote: "In my opinion the least bad tax is the property tax on the unimproved value of land, the Henry George argument of many, many years ago."

    Wish he pushed this further in his career with his widespread influence. However, I disagree with him on land "tax" being evil at all. It is simply repaying the community what the landholder owes.
    http://www.cooperativeindividualism.org/
    http://www.wealthandwant.com/
    http://freeliberal.com/

  4. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by Krugerrand View Post
    I'd like to see voluntary taxes. That said, I see degrees of evil in different forms of taxes. (Much like I see theft of food by a starving person less reprehensible than some other forms of theft.)
    I like the idea of user fees. Government programs should be more like insurance. Sign up for the program and pay the fee if you want the benefits.



    Evil #1 - Inheritance tax. The state has no business taking anything from somebody's estate. Let's say my Great Uncle Ned had a fabulously valuable painting worth millions of dollars. Because I was always his favorite, he willed it to me. Now, I have no money to pay the taxes on it and must sell it - because the state believes it should own a part of it.
    Agreed. The state has no rightful claim to inheritance of capital imo.

    Evil #2 - Property tax. If it's mine, you can't charge me for it anymore. Now let's say a beautiful piece of land has been in the family for 15 generations. We've grown apples there and make a few dollars selling (FDA approved pasteurized) apple cider. (sorry I wouldn't want to upset the FDA) As the years have gone by, the new shopping districts and town houses have made the neighborhood especially popular. The value of the land has increased so much, that the taxes on the property are such that I can't afford to own it anymore. I must sell my land to pay the property tax.
    I vehemently oppose property taxes as they are now. Improvements (fixed and not fixed) on land should not be taxed. I support a land value tax that does not tax improvements, personal property, and buildings. However, it does take into consideration location. Therefore, something like a shopping district or town houses down the street could affect the land value.

    However, while the land value tax would increase, revenue for your business would naturally increase as well.
    Last edited by redbluepill; 08-08-2011 at 01:28 PM.
    http://www.cooperativeindividualism.org/
    http://www.wealthandwant.com/
    http://freeliberal.com/

  5. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    Taxation is always theft. This is proven by the simple fact that it is funded through force. If it was voluntary, force would not be required.
    I disagree. I believe it is a service fee. Force should only be used if there is a refusal to pay after services have been rendered. It is the same with any business. If I get service in a resturant, and then I run out without paying, then I have just refused to pay after services have been rendered. The business now has the right to go to the government and have them use force to regain what has been stolen. That is one of the legitimate functions of government (protection of property). The only difference is that in the case with the government, it carries out it's own use of force to regain what has been stolen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    This neglects the question of who legitimately owns the property in the first place. If I homestead a piece of land, and then someone arbitrarily declares me under their jurisdiction, it would be absurd to call it justice that I move if I don't want to be apart of their system. Or if someone arbitrarily claims jurisdiction to land they have not legitimately acquired, then any use of violence to enforce this claim is nothing more than a criminal act.
    I didn't neglect it, I just didn't address it. It is true that if you own land that is on the outskirts of a society, or land that is owned before the government is established, then it would be absurd to force them to move or to have arbitrary jurisdiction placed over them, but that is not what I am saying. If the land is on the outskirts, then it would not endanger the survival of the government or of the rights of others because you do not have to participate in their government. You can live outside of it. Furthermore, if you own land before the government is established, then they have no right to surround you with government that you don't accept. This is similar to what should have happened to Native Americans. although, if you gain or purchase land inside of an established system after the fact, then you must abide by the laws of that land, as long as they don't violate your basic rights. Except for inheritance of land, everyone living in a society chooses to gain land in that society. They must consciously choose to abid by those rules and laws. If they inherit land, then the only way they can choose to live inside of that land without abiding by the laws is if their ancestors had made that choice before the government was established. Once again the Native Americans make a good example.
    Last edited by Legend1104; 08-08-2011 at 07:33 PM.
    I am more and more convinced that man is a dangerous creature and that power, whether vested in many or a few, is ever grasping, and like the grave, cries, 'Give, give.'

    Abigail Adams

  6. #35

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    I don't think aggressive use of force is ever moral.

    And although "sin taxes" and other such things wouldn't affect me much personally, I think any amount of aggression condoned by society will inevitably grow and lead to things that would affect me.

    Because of this, I think the only society that could preserve liberty for long would be one where everything is voluntary and there is absolutely no place for aggressive government to take root and grow.
    "Truth will win in the end. We just don't know when the end is. So we have to persevere." ― Carol Paul


  7. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by Legend1104 View Post
    I disagree. I believe it is a service fee. Force should only be used if there is a refusal to pay after services have been rendered. It is the same with any business.
    Except no one forces you in to the restaurant, uses force to prevent competition, or charges you for a meal you didn't ask for.

    A service fee is voluntary. You are forced to pay taxes whether or not you use the services funded by them.

    If I get service in a resturant, and then I run out without paying, then I have just refused to pay after services have been rendered.
    I assume you are talking about voluntarily going in to a restaurant. But a more accurate example would be if I mowed your lawn without you asking and demanded (at gun point if necessary) that you pay me however much money I wanted. I would of course justify my demand because refusing to pay me would be refusing to pay after a service (mowing your lawn) has been rendered.

    Also, I would use violence to prevent any voluntary agreements you might make to hire someone else to mow your lawn.

  8. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    Except no one forces you in to the restaurant, uses force to prevent competition, or charges you for a meal you didn't ask for.

    A service fee is voluntary. You are forced to pay taxes whether or not you use the services funded by them.



    I assume you are talking about voluntarily going in to a restaurant. But a more accurate example would be if I mowed your lawn without you asking and demanded (at gun point if necessary) that you pay me however much money I wanted. I would of course justify my demand because refusing to pay me would be refusing to pay after a service (mowing your lawn) has been rendered.

    Also, I would use violence to prevent any voluntary agreements you might make to hire someone else to mow your lawn.
    FTW.
    Quote Originally Posted by Torchbearer
    what works can never be discussed online. there is only one language the government understands, and until the people start speaking it by the magazine full... things will remain the same.
    Hear/buy my music here "government is the enemy of liberty"-RPEphesians 6:12 (KJV)//I sell stuff here go buy nao!

  9. #38

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    Except no one forces you in to the restaurant, uses force to prevent competition, or charges you for a meal you didn't ask for.

    A service fee is voluntary. You are forced to pay taxes whether or not you use the services funded by them.



    I assume you are talking about voluntarily going in to a restaurant. But a more accurate example would be if I mowed your lawn without you asking and demanded (at gun point if necessary) that you pay me however much money I wanted. I would of course justify my demand because refusing to pay me would be refusing to pay after a service (mowing your lawn) has been rendered.

    Also, I would use violence to prevent any voluntary agreements you might make to hire someone else to mow your lawn.
    You completely ignored everything I said. I have already stated that it is not against your will. The entire last section of my post addressed the fact that by choicing to be in the system then you subject yourself to its laws. You left that section out and then proceeded to only address the beginning. That defeats the point of the entire post. You can't ignore my premise just because you disagree with it and act like it doesn't exist simply because it strenghtens your argument. Therefore, I will simply repost the entire last section of my original post:


    I didn't neglect it, I just didn't address it. It is true that if you own land that is on the outskirts of a society, or land that is owned before the government is established, then it would be absurd to force them to move or to have arbitrary jurisdiction placed over them, but that is not what I am saying. If the land is on the outskirts, then it would not endanger the survival of the government or of the rights of others because you do not have to participate in their government. You can live outside of it. Furthermore, if you own land before the government is established, then they have no right to surround you with government that you don't accept. This is similar to what should have happened to Native Americans. although, if you gain or purchase land inside of an established system after the fact, then you must abide by the laws of that land, as long as they don't violate your basic rights. Except for inheritance of land, everyone living in a society chooses to gain land in that society. They must consciously choose to abid by those rules and laws. If they inherit land, then the only way they can choose to live inside of that land without abiding by the laws is if their ancestors had made that choice before the government was established. Once again the Native Americans make a good example.
    Quote Originally Posted by heavenlyboy34 View Post
    FTW.
    FTF (for the fail)
    Last edited by Legend1104; 08-09-2011 at 12:48 AM.
    I am more and more convinced that man is a dangerous creature and that power, whether vested in many or a few, is ever grasping, and like the grave, cries, 'Give, give.'

    Abigail Adams

  10. #39

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    Quote Originally Posted by Legend1104 View Post
    You completely ignored everything I said.
    What I said equally applies to that last paragraph because

    by choicing to be in the system then you subject yourself to its laws.
    Fails to establish who owns the property that you are occupying, and you cannot legitimately claim authority over something that you do not own (like me mowing your lawn). If I find an abandoned piece of land that falls within an invisible jurisdiction of some "system", and homestead it (build a house, etc.), then any claim the "system" makes over my legitimately acquired property is completely arbitrary.

    It is true that if you own land that is on the outskirts of a society, or land that is owned before the government is established, then it would be absurd to force them to move or to have arbitrary jurisdiction placed over them, but that is not what I am saying.
    It would be absurd to say that an establishment of a group of individuals is a non-arbitrary way to claim ownership of un-owned resources. How does this group non-arbitrarily own any of the land it claims under it's jurisdiction without first establishing ownership of all of the actual property?

    if you gain or purchase land inside of an established system after the fact, then you must abide by the laws of that land, as long as they don't violate your basic rights.
    Again, this claim is absolutely arbitrary for any land that has not been legitimately acquired by someone. An individual cannot point to a piece of land and just declare "I own such and such land". This principle does not change when applied to a group of individuals.

    If one person may not own property simply by a declaration, what is the criterion that needs to be fulfilled before this principle changes? When it is two people, five people, one hundred people, one million people? Of course, any such cut off point is completely arbitrary. If an individual cannot legitimately claim property by verbal declaration alone, neither can a group of individuals.

    I would also be interested if there are any services you can think of that you are bound to without written consent. Without agreeing to a contract, I cannot think of any other service provider that you voluntarily pay for where you are not allowed to quit doing business with in the future if you choose so.

    If someone sold me service X once with no conditions on future sell of service, and then tried to use violence to forcibly "provide" this service to me in the future, it could not logically claimed to be voluntary.

    The simple fact that you cannot decline the services that the government provides under it's arbitrary jurisdiction, is irrefutable evidence that is it not voluntary. Can you think of any other supposed voluntary service that you are forced to accept?

  11. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    What I said equally applies to that last paragraph because



    Fails to establish who owns the property that you are occupying, and you cannot legitimately claim authority over something that you do not own (like me mowing your lawn). If I find an abandoned piece of land that falls within an invisible jurisdiction of some "system", and homestead it (build a house, etc.), then any claim the "system" makes over my legitimately acquired property is completely arbitrary.



    It would be absurd to say that an establishment of a group of individuals is a non-arbitrary way to claim ownership of un-owned resources. How does this group non-arbitrarily own any of the land it claims under it's jurisdiction without first establishing ownership of all of the actual property?



    Again, this claim is absolutely arbitrary for any land that has not been legitimately acquired by someone. An individual cannot point to a piece of land and just declare "I own such and such land". This principle does not change when applied to a group of individuals.

    If one person may not own property simply by a declaration, what is the criterion that needs to be fulfilled before this principle changes? When it is two people, five people, one hundred people, one million people? Of course, any such cut off point is completely arbitrary. If an individual cannot legitimately claim property by verbal declaration alone, neither can a group of individuals.

    I would also be interested if there are any services you can think of that you are bound to without written consent. Without agreeing to a contract, I cannot think of any other service provider that you voluntarily pay for where you are not allowed to quit doing business with in the future if you choose so.

    If someone sold me service X once with no conditions on future sell of service, and then tried to use violence to forcibly "provide" this service to me in the future, it could not logically claimed to be voluntary.

    The simple fact that you cannot decline the services that the government provides under it's arbitrary jurisdiction, is irrefutable evidence that is it not voluntary. Can you think of any other supposed voluntary service that you are forced to accept?
    The fact that you cannot decline the services that the government provides is because it is impossible to decline. Let us imagine for a moment that the government did allow you the option to opt out of the system, but remain in the country. Let us say that you did not have to pay any taxes, but you no longer received police, fire, or court protection. Let us also assume for arguement that this government was limited to the function of only protecting life, liberty, and property and it did not provide school, road, water, social security, health care, or any other service. Even in that system where you refuse services, you still receive service. since you live inside of that country, you are still protected from invasions by foreign countries. There is no way to provide that to just a select group. It is either provided to everyone or no one. Furthermore, you will be still protected from insurrection or rebellion because if a mob rises up in the society and threatens the destruction of everyones property, life, or liberty, the government would provide you with service in the form of protection when it destroys this domestic force. Also, even though you may not be allowed to use court systems to seek justice for unfair treatment by individuals or businesses, the fact that the government exists and creates laws against theft or fraud, it will create a blanket protection of all members of society. Even though individual cases will still occur, that area of the world will tend to have better standards of living, treatment, and health than others without such laws.

    So you see it is impossible to live inside a society with an established government without receiving some service, and since these services are paid for by other citizens, it is a violation of their rights to take money that they pay into the system to provide for services to other individuals that don't pay.

    The nature of government is different from a typical business or service provider and the difference is a very important one.

    I will give you one last example. Imagine internet service. Let us say one individual gets internet service and uses wifi connections in their apartment. Then let us imagine the guy next door realizes that he can use his wifi because the first guy did not set up a password. Well, if that guy uses that wifi, that is considered stealing and if he is caught could get fined. The difference in that and a government is that the guy can choose to refuse to use the internet service, a person living inside of an established government cannot choose to not use some of the blanket services provided.

    I guess in the end our difference is that you would say that this guy cannot help using these blanket services and that it is immoral to force him to pay for the use of them if he didn't intend too. I simply believe that it is immoral to force others to pay for you if you don't contribute because it violates that persons rights, and I believe that is a more egregious thant the former.

    Either way I am enjoying this conversation.


    P.S.

    Fails to establish who owns the property that you are occupying, and you cannot legitimately claim authority over something that you do not own (like me mowing your lawn). If I find an abandoned piece of land that falls within an invisible jurisdiction of some "system", and homestead it (build a house, etc.), then any claim the "system" makes over my legitimately acquired property is completely arbitrary.
    Sure you can legitimately claim authority over something you don't own in certain circumstances. If your walk onto my property I have the right to force you to abid by my rules. I may not own you, but I do have authority over you because you are in my jurisdiction. I cannot force you to violate your rights, but I do have the right to impose regulations on your actions as long as you remain. The government operates much in the same way. They do not own your land, but since it is in it's jurisdiction, they can impose regulations on your actions as long as it doesn't violate your rights. Who gave it jurisdiction over your land? Whoever owned the land at the time of the governments establishment.

    It would be absurd to say that an establishment of a group of individuals is a non-arbitrary way to claim ownership of un-owned resources. How does this group non-arbitrarily own any of the land it claims under it's jurisdiction without first establishing ownership of all of the actual property?
    Just because a government exists with jurisdiction over a plot of land, does not mean I am saying it claims ownership of it or it's resources. You are getting confused about my idea about the role of government. It, in my mind, is only legitimate if it protects peoples rights, not controls them or their property. That is the system that I am defending. It doese not own the land, it only set up a system of law and justice in that area. If one plot of land (or multiple plots) exists inside of a society where no rules of law or justice apply, then it in turn endangers their rights. Plus, if a person lives there then they are further endangered because a person lives inside of their community that is not required to abid by their rules as long as he remains in his sanctuary. He could commit a crime on his property (or outside of it then retreat back to it) and be protected from all reprisals. The people of that society have submitted the authority to punish injustice to the government. Since the government could not punish such people, then they would escape justice. This may led certain citizens to take justice into their own hand, which would upset the laws established by the system and would only seek to unravel the whole process and endanger citizens rights.
    Last edited by Legend1104; 08-09-2011 at 11:47 PM.
    I am more and more convinced that man is a dangerous creature and that power, whether vested in many or a few, is ever grasping, and like the grave, cries, 'Give, give.'

    Abigail Adams

  12. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Legend1104 View Post
    The fact that you cannot decline the services that the government provides is because it is impossible to decline.
    If it is impossible to decline then this is self-evident that it is not voluntary. If you make an agreement and then refuse to pay after the service is given, it is theft. But if you never made the agreement in the first place, then any service forcibly provided is an intrusion. Any fabrication of consent here is mythical.

    So you see it is impossible to live inside a society with an established government without receiving some service
    Even if this were true, it fails to justify the way (which is involuntarily) these services are produced. It is impossible to live in a neighborhood with an established Mafia without receiving various services, but this establishes no justification for the services the Mafia produces in the first place.

    Note that it is not being argued that certain services are not needed. If I say a violent group of criminals should not provide X, it does not mean that I think X should not be provided at all.

    it is a violation of their rights to take money that they pay into the system to provide for services to other individuals that don't pay.
    This is a circular argument. It rests on the assumption that the money that was "paid" was not stolen in the first place. If the money was stolen in the first place, this is where the violation of rights has taken place. After the initial theft, the money has already been stolen, it is not stolen "more" by someone who was not responsible for the theft but happens to "benefit" from whatever it happens to produce.

    I simply believe that it is immoral to force others to pay for you if you don't contribute because it violates that persons rights
    Again, this assumes the payment was not immoral in the first place, it assumes it was initially voluntary. It is the involuntary funding that is immoral in the first place. It cannot be immoral to try to prevent your own money from being stolen or refuse services provided by a gang of thieves simply because they are using other people's stolen money to produce various things that you never consented to.

    If your walk onto my property I have the right to force you to abid by my rules. I may not own you, but I do have authority over you because you are in my jurisdiction
    But this is not arbitrary because your ownership of the property is not arbitrary or unjust (assuming you didn't steal your house).

    but since it is in it's jurisdiction, they can impose regulations on your actions as long as it doesn't violate your rights. Who gave it jurisdiction over your land? Whoever owned the land at the time of the governments establishment.
    The jurisdiction is arbitrary if they have not homesteaded or traded for the land. If someone sells a piece of legitimately acquired property to a group of individuals calling themselves government, it is only legitimate if the funds used to purchase the land were not stolen.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wesker1982 View Post
    You cannot make a legitimate contract using stolen property. A contract is only legitimate when the agreement is on a voluntary basis with all parties. When the "State" makes a contract, it is arbitrarily binding non-voluntary participants (the victims of the legal plunder).

    So the State: 1. uses stolen property to make exchanges, and 2. it binds people to agreements who have never consented to the terms. Point one would be enough to make any property the State has acquired as illegitimate (from a libertarian viewpoint), point 2. would invalidate any contract the State makes. For any of the State's arrangements with private (rightful) owners to be regarded as legitimate, it cannot fulfill either of these criterion.

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