How to Piss Off the Tax Man and Spread Liberty
That sucking sound in the background of daily life? That’s money being inhaled out of the economy and filling the pockets of cronies.
Today, in response, we’re going to show you a clever and simple way to fight back in your day-to-day life. And, to boot, spread the message of liberty and freedom in the process.
First, let’s get a little riled up about the ridiculousness of it all.
Every year, Americans spend more than 7 billion hours of their precious lives and four trillion dollars to get robbed blind so bureaucrats can turn productive dollars into mindlessly destructive ones. And then, of course, they throw scraps at those who are barely scraping by and consider themselves heroes.
And those who see the racket for what it is, of course, won’t rock the boat too hard. Why, who in their right minds would wants to die in prison like Irwin Schiff?
And then, on April 16, we all wake up and just keep on throwing money in the fire. Some of us even end up having to pay taxes for past actions. Small business owner Chris Hughes, for example, was recently told he would have to pay a 40% excise tax for his vape business, Fat Cat Vapor Shop. Worse, the tax is retroactive. According to his own estimates, the tax will cost him $40,000.
“I just can’t afford that,” Hughes told Bob Dick of FEE.org. “This tax is forcing me to close my business. I’ve had customers come in crying because of the news that I’m shutting my doors. This is wrong. This is just unfair.”
Alas, even after Hughes pays the mafia, shutters his doors, and moves on, his experience with taxes won’t end there. Then, he’ll be subject to a seemingly endless list of taxes. Which include, but aren’t limited to (I’ve put in bold the especially ridiculous ones)…
Accounts Receivable Tax… Accounting and Tax Preparation (cost to taxpayers $300 billion)… Accumulated Earnings Tax… Accumulation Distribution of Trusts… Activity Fee (Dumping Permit Fee)… Air Tax (PA coin-operated vacuums)… Aircraft Jet Fuel Tax… Aircraft Excise Tax… Alcohol Fuels Tax… Alcoholic Beverage Tax… Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT)… Ambulance Services (Air Ambulance Services, SD)… Ammunition Tax… Amusement Tax (MA, VA, MD)… Animal Slaughter Tax (WI, others, Per Animal)… Annual Custodial Fees (Ira Accounts)… Ballast Water Management Fee (Marine Invasive Species)… Biodiesel Fuel Tax… Blueberry Tax (Maine)… Bribe Taxes (Pay If You Dare)… Brothel licensing fees… Building Permit Tax… Capital Gains Tax… California Interstate User Diesel Fuel Tax… California Redemption Value (Can and Bottle Tax)… CDL License Tax… Charter Boat Captain License… Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Fee… Cigarette Tax… Cigarette Tax Stamp (Acts) (Distributors)… Compressed Natural Gas Tax… Commercial Activity Tax (OH – for Service Providers)… Corporate Income Tax… Court Fines (Indirect Taxes)… County Property Tax… Disposable Diapers Tax (Wisconsin)… Disposal Fee (Any Landfill Dumping)… Dog License Tax… Duck Hunting Tax Stamp (PA, others)… Electronic Waste Recycling Fee (E-Waste)… Emergency Telephone User Surcharge… Environmental Fee (CA – HazMat Fees)… Estate Tax (Death Tax, to be reinstated)… Excise Taxes… Facility Fee (CA – HazMat Fees)… FDIC tax (insurance premium on bank deposits)… Federal Income Tax… Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA)… Fiduciary Income Tax (Estates and Trusts)… Fishing License Tax… Flush Tax (MD Tax For Producing Wastewater)… Food License Tax… Fountain Soda Drink Tax (Chicago – 9%)… Franchise Tax… Fresh Fruit (CA, if Purchased From A Vending Machine)… Fuel Gross Receipts Tax (Retail/Distributor)… Fuel Permit Tax… Fur Clothing Tax (MN)… Garbage Tax… Gasoline Tax (475 Cents Per Gallon)… Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax… Generator Fee (Recycled Waste Fee)…Gift Tax… Gross Receipts Tax… Habitat Stamp (Hunting/Fishing in some states)… Hamburger Tax… Hazardous Substances Fees: Generator, Facility, Disposal… Highway Access Fee… Household Employment Taxes… Hunting License Tax… Illegal Drug Possession (North Carolina)… Individual Income Tax… Inheritance Tax… Insect Control Hazardous Materials License… Insurance Premium Tax… Intangible Tax (Leases Of Govt. Owned Real Property)… Integrated Waste Management Fee… Interstate User Diesel Fuel Tax… Inventory Tax… IRA Rollover Tax (a transfer of IRA money)… IRA Early Withdrawal Tax… IRS Interest Charges… IRS Penalties (Tax On Top Of Tax)… Jock Tax (income earned by athletes in some states)… Kerosene, Distillate, & Stove Oil Taxes… Kiddie Tax (Child’s Earned Interest Form 8615)… Land Gains and Real Estate Withholding… Lead Poisoning Prevention Fee (Occupational)… Lease Severance Tax… Library Tax… Liquid Natural Gas Tax… Liquid Petroleum Gas Tax… Liquor Tax… Litigation Tax (TN Imposes Varies With the Offense)… LLC/PLLC Corporate Registration Tax… Local Income Tax… Lodging Taxes… Lump-Sum Distributions… Luxury Taxes… Make-Up Tax (Ohio, applying in a salon is taxable)… Marriage License Tax… Meal Tax… Medicare Tax… Mello-Roos Taxes (Special Taxes and Assessments)… Migratory Waterfowl Stamp (addition to hunting license)… Minnow Dealers License (Retail – For One Shop)… Minnow Dealers License (Distributor – For One+ Shops)… Mobile Home Ad Valorem Taxes… Motor Fuel Tax (For Suppliers)… Motor Vehicle Tax… Music and Dramatic Performing Rights Tax… Nudity Tax (Utah)… Nursery Registration (Buying and selling plants)... Occupancy Inspection Fees… Occupation Taxes and Fees (Various Professional Fees)… Oil and Gas Assessment Tax… Oil Spill Response, Prevention, and Administration Fee… Parking Space Taxes… Pass-Through Withholding… Pay-Phone Calls Tax (Indiana)… Percolation Test Fee… Personal Property Tax… Personal Holding Company (undistributed earnings)… Pest Control License… Petroleum Business Tax… Playing Card Tax (Al)… Pole Tax (TX — A $5 Cover Charge On Strip Clubs)… Profit from Illegal Drug Dealing… Property Tax… Property Transfer Tax (DE, ownership transfer between parties)… Prostitution Tax (NV – Prostitute Work Permits)… Poultry Registered Premises License (Sales License)… Rain Water Tax (Runoff after a Storm)… Rat Control Fee (CA)… Real Estate Tax… Recreational Vehicle Tax… Refrigerator and Freezer Recycling Fees… Regional Transit Taxing Authority (Trains)… Road Usage Tax… Room Tax (Hotel Rooms)… Sales Tax (State)… Sales Tax (City)… Sales And Use Tax (Sellers Permit)… School Tax… Service Charge Tax… Self Employment Tax… Septic And Drain Field Inspection Fees… Sex Sales Tax (UT, when nude people perform services)… Sewer & Water Tax… Social Security Tax… Sparkler and Novelties Tax (WV Sellers of Sparklers, etc)… Special Assessment Tax (Not Ad Valorem)… State Documentary Stamp Tax on Notes (FL RE Tax)… State Franchise Tax… State Income Tax… State Park Fees… State Unemployment Tax (SUTA)… Straight Vegetable Oil (SVO) Fuel Tax… Stud Fees (Kentucky’s Thoroughbred Sex Tax)… Tangible Personal Property Tax… Tattoo Tax (AR Tax On Tattoos)… Telephone 911 Service Tax (some states)… Telephone Federal Excise Tax… Telephone Federal Universal Service Fee Tax… Telephone Federal Surcharge Taxes… Telephone State Surcharge Taxes… Telephone Local Surcharge Taxes… Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax… Telephone Recurring Charges Tax… Telephone Universal Access Tax… Telephone Non-Recurring Charges Tax… Telephone State Usage Charge Tax… Telephone Local Usage Charge Tax… Tire Recycling Fee…Tobacco Tax (Cigar, Pipe, Consumer Tax)… Tobacco Tax (Cigar, Pipe, Dealer Tax)… Toll Road Taxes… Toll Bridge Taxes… Toll Tunnel Taxes… Tourism or Concession License Fee… Traffic Fines (Indirect Taxation)… Transportable Treatment Unit Fee (Small Facility)… Trailer Registration Tax… Trout Stamp (Addendum To Fish License)… Use Taxes (On Out-Of-State Purchases)… Utility Taxes… Unemployment Tax… Underground Storage Tank Maintenance Fee… Underpayment of Estimated Tax (Form 2210)… Unreported Tip Income (Social Security and Medicare Tax)… Vehicle License… Vehicle Recovery Tax (CO, to find stolen cars)… Vehicle Registration Tax… Vehicle Sales Tax… Wagering Tax (Tax on Gambling Winnings)… Waste Vegetable Oil (WVO) Fuel Tax… Water Rights Fee… Watercraft Registration Tax… Waterfowl Stamp Tax… Well Permit Tax… Wiring Inspection Fees… Workers Compensation Tax….
[Catches breath… catches breath… catches breath]
Obviously, taxation is on my mind.
I am, after all, in California — where you can’t fart into the wind without some bureaucrap wanting to tax you for it.
Which is why, for the entirety of my time in California (and beyond), I’m going to heed the advice of Peter Kallman and tip in cash, while spreading the message of liberty. (And, of course, write “Taxation is Theft” on my receipts.)
Tip With Cash, Free the World
Thanks to the depredations of government, people are weighed down by bureaucratic costs in virtually every aspect of their lives. In my attempts to free myself and those I interact with on a regular basis from these fiscal chains, I try to consider the most commonplace aspects of life and how I can remove layers of violence from the most fundamentally peaceful human interactions.
This is sort of a “low-hanging fruit” strategy of liberation. Because state expropriators tend to target and monopolize the most basic human needs (water, land(shelter), security, transportation [#WWBTR]), it only makes sense that we should focus on loosening the government’s grip on these necessities. Immediately coming to mind is arguably the most important of the basic human needs: food.
Eating is not only a matter of basic sustenance, but also a paramount social activity. In many cultures and throughout history the shared meal has long stood as a profoundly humane, even spiritual and holy, experience. Today, the global restaurant industry accounts for over 2.7 trillion dollars in sales. It employs well over 65 million people. It is plausible that the sharing of food was the original division of labor that led to the dawn of civilization. Across millennia, through the rise and fall of all of mankind’s cultures, there has been no greater or more universal act of peace and hospitality.
I travel quite a bit for work. I have not spent more than three weeks in a row in a city so far this year. As such, most of my meals are eaten at restaurants, served by one of these 65 million humans gracious enough to accommodate me. It is here that I attempt to offer both economic relief as well as a quick lesson in avoiding extortion.
Every time I eat out, I generally pay with a credit card, but I am always sure to leave a generous cash gift rather than a tip on the receipt. I also always explain my reason to the server as follows:
A Gift with a Message
“Hi, can I talk to you for a second?
I want to let you know, I really appreciate your service today. So I want to give you this gift. This isn’t a tip. I always leave a cash gift, and I want to tell you why. Like I said, I greatly appreciate you and your team for serving me such a great meal today. I think everyone here did a great job. So I want to give you this, because you deserve to keep it all, and I don’t want you to share it with anyone who didn’t help you today.
Obviously I’m not talking about your restaurant’s policy on splitting it with those here who helped you out. If a bartender, busser, or other members of your team deserve a percent of this, by all means, share it with them! But what I don’t want you to do is give this to people who have already made this meal X% more expensive than it should have been (where X is the local sales tithe). To be honest, these thieves have most likely made it even more expensive than that — when you consider the many levels of stealing, from the money they’re directly and forcibly taking out of your paycheck, your employer’s payroll and profits, not to mention the amount of money they charge the owner of this place based on the property this building is on, and even the many, many levels they take a cut from in the process that got the food from the farm to this table… I think they’ve stolen enough and made this meal so much more expensive than it needed to be. So I’d like it if you kept this gift for yourself, and don’t give any more to those people who produce nothing and try to control everyone else who does.”
Now, that may seem like a lot to go through. But I didn’t start off with this entire schpiel. Originally, I used a few quick lines. And to this day, I judge it based on how they’re reacting. If immediately the person nods their head, or interrupts me and says “I never claim cash!” or something to that effect, I can usually truncate it and adjust based on the individual. But I find a version of this generally elicits quite a good response from people.
Commerce and Connection
On the one hand, about 70% of the time (as service industry people are pretty keen to this idea), the server knows what I mean immediately, and says something to the effect that they completely agree with me. This allows me to relate to the person, and hopefully help them extrapolate out, that all forms of coerced, mandatory tithing is immoral. It is a great feeling, as someone who’s constantly fighting for more freedom, to have about two-thirds of my meals result in relating to the very basic human desire to be free that we all share deep down inside.
The other 30% of the time is really the best though. The person is genuinely blown away, and tends to be incredibly grateful to me for explaining it to them. I get a lot of, “Wow, I never thought of it that way.” I LOVE this response. At this point, I get to name drop my favoriteinstitutions and websites for educating people on the nature of legitimized theft. Oftentimes they’re so interested that I’ll take my copy of the receipt and write the names of my favorite websites for this sort of information on the back of it for them to check out later.
I find that this human connection, made with someone with whom I’ve already been developing a rapport throughout the meal, is far more effective than senseless sloganeering and shouting inside joke memes at them. On the contrary, I build true human connections based on the voluntary interactions we share for mutual prosperity, and through the non-violent, community-based strategies of civil disobedience,agorism, and counter-economics. I cannot put into numbers how often a server remembers me the next time I visit their restaurant, and thanks me for showing them this new perspective. And that kind of human connection is what this whole thing called life is all about.
[Ed. note: This article originally appeared on FEE.org right here at this link.]