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Topic: Income Tax, Matches 2 quotes.



Liberty and Christianity

Liberty, like Christianity, has been tried but never wholly adopted. It isn’t that these ways of life have been found wanting. It is that they have been found difficult and rejected by many. ... To the extent that government takes sides among the citizens-plundering some for the “benefit” of others, granting special privileges-to that extent has government become incapable of performing its legitimate function of protecting the life and livelihood of all citizens equally. It is a self-evident fact that no person or agency can protect the honest fruits of one’s labor while at the same time forcibly taking the fruits of one’s labor. In short, the more government acts aggressively, the less it can act protectively or defensively.

The history of government’s acting aggressively coincides with the history of government. Is there a single instance where government has been limited to the defense of creative energy and its uninhibited exchange? Even in America in 1789—the nearest known approach to strict limitation—slavery and tariffs were acknowledged as appropriate aggressive acts of government. The principle of aggression, once admitted, had either to be denied and destroyed or approved and expanded. While Negro slavery was later denied and destroyed, the principle of government aggression was not stamped out. Some of the aggressive seed remained in embryonic stage; and by 1900, governmental actions were taken which led to the development of the embryo. By 1913 this perverse principle was so thoroughly established that we inscribed on our American banner—proclaimed and adopted as national policy—the Marxian ideal. This Marxian ideal, the Sixteenth Amendment—the progressive income tax—legalized a new slavery in lieu of the Negro slavery earlier disposed of.”

Source: Leonard E. Read
Government—An Ideal Concept, p76-77

Topics: Christianity; Income Tax; Liberty



In his memoirs, Arthur Crock, the former Washington Bureau Chief of the New York Times, said, “The United States merits the distinction of having discarded its past and its meaning in one of the briefest spans in modern history.” Why don’t we look at those other nations that chose the path of government intervention before us? The British parliament has been debating what to do about the steel industry. It’s nationalized, it’s theirs, it’s losing $20 million a week. In all the debate, no one on either side has suggested the most common sense, logical answer. Put it back out where it was in the private sector in private ownership where it wasn’t losing $20 million a week. Sweden has long been held up to view as proof that socialism will work. In 1976 the Swedes went to the polls and voted against Karl Marx. They voted out the Swedish Prime Minister. Probably the straw that broke the camel’s back was a change in the income tax rates. At $33,000 of earnings in Sweden, the tax rate is 102%. We’ve had enough of sideline kibitzers telling us this system, which they themselves have thrown out of sync with their social tinkering, can only be saved by more of the same until we have a total government planning and management of our lives. What I’ve really been trying to say, I suppose, is that government has legitimate functions, which it should perform, and it performs well. Our problem is when government goes outside its proper province and attempts to do those things which belong in private hands — that’s when we get in trouble.

Source: Ronald Reagan
1978 Automotive Age Western Dealers Conference

Topics: Central Planning; Income Tax

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