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IPFS News Link • TAXES: Federal

Abolish, Don't Reform, the Income Tax

• by Jacob G. Hornberger

If all we do is reform infringements on liberty, we have done nothing to achieve liberty. All that we have done, at best, is improve our lives as serfs. That's because reform is not freedom. Reform is reform.

Obviously, making the case for liberty to people is much more challenging than making the case for reform. Since reform leaves the infringement intact, people feel more comfortable with it because it doesn't entail a fundamental change in what they are accustomed to. Moreover, the arguments for dismantling or abolition are fundamentally different than the arguments for reform. (See my recent article "Don't Reform the IRS. Abolish It Instead.")

A good example of this phenomenon is a recent article in the American Thinker entitled "An End to Tax Withholding" by Lloyd Billingsley. In his article, Billingsley criticizes the federal withholding tax. He provides readers with an interesting history of the withholding tax. It came into existence as an emergency wartime funding measure in World War II and then became a permanent part of the government's income-tax system. He also points out that the idea, ironically enough, originated with libertarian economist Milton Friedman.