When a band of patriots gathered in Boston Harbor to dump tea overboard, the tax protest was planned to be much, much more than just a visible act of civil disobedience. The Boston tea party was crafted to strike directly at the basic instrument of the government’s well being: the crown’s revenue. This article will present practical suggestions after some discussion below. A hint of what appears below: globalization is the little guys’ friend, because it is now available to everyone.
Tea which could not be sold could not be taxed, and that was the principle reason for the protest. It was the real and threatened reduction in the crown’s revenues that really got the North government’s attention. The government had a lot of expensive operations proposed (just as the Obama administration does) and badly needed enhanced revenues to finance the government.
See Moe Lane’s post today regarding excellent suggestions for nationwide tea parties. I’d suggest we extend his ideas somewhat so that the web sites he proposes would also discuss means by which citizens and corporations can legally struggle to reduce or defer their tax payments and tax liabilities legally.
Our ability to make our voices heard by withholding our dollars will make a lot more difference in Washington than merely putting our feet in the street, although that is a requirement, too. But without a real, genuine, and severely effective tax revolt, our tea parties today will be remembered as a quaint but ineffective protest to stave off big government. Remember, this regime has already demonstrated and appalling willingness and ability to shut out dissenting voices. Mere voices simply will not be heard.
Dollars, or their absence, will be clearly felt in Washington however!
To begin the discussion, I’ll make 2 specific suggestion, that other may hopefully help develop (expert suggestions welcome!).
1. I recall from the prairie fire rebellion when I was much younger, one recommended legal dodge was to declare 99 dependents so paycheck witholdings would be minimized. For course, the difference is saved (earning interest!) until final filing for the yuear when it is remitted with the true number of dependents (after filing multiple extensions, perhaps?) If such behavior were widespread, the government would see an immediate affect on revenues.
2. The second suggestion stems from the technology that has become available since the last tax rebellion: globalization. Globalization has become the small man’s friend because globalization is impossible without electronic tools. Those electronic tools have now percolated down to everyone as their creators seek larger markets. It is perfectly legal for US Citizens to own interests in offshore trusts, corporations and businesses. An offshore business or revenue stream incurs no tax liability in the US if set up properly, and setting up such an entity properly is no big hurdle. The critical part, of course, is setting up an offshore merchant account so you can process credit card funds (most likely from a web site hosted offshore?) into an account that never touches US shores. Funds are not taxable until you repatriate them as profits (expenses you can spend, even on US soil, without tax exposure ). Some of these merchant accounts even come with a VISA or Mastercard debit card ‘attached’ so you have access to your offshore funds anywhere you can use a credit card. That’s the electronic globalization part, and no secrecy is required. Just google ‘offshore merchant account’ to learn how to get started.
If you are truly determined to survive the coming difficult times, then rather then look for a second job or plant a kitchen garden (you should probably do a kitchen garden anyway) is the idea of starting an online business. We see more and more online businesses start up and succeed owned by folks who have no technology experience because none is really needed to get started selling online. When you have a small business of your own, at first, you do not quit your ‘day job’ but you establish a revenue stream for yourself over which you have total control. We have seen many, many businesses start up that allow their owners to live off the income after only a couple of years of building their business. I will blog separately about how and why to start an online business, because it is a truly patriotic act that does create jobs and economic activity, while new businesses rarely pay taxes early in their histories.
The ‘democratization’ of ecommerce tools extends not only to globalization, but to every facet of starting an online business. Lots of web site hosting services are available for free. Many ecommerce services (not just my employer) allow you to ecommerce-enable any web site with just a few simple, easy copy/paste operations. Our firm has seen a very significant jump in new business creation and many of these entities are succeeding.
What you don’t need: secret, numbered Swiss accounts are not required unless your goal is to illegally evade taxes, and such measures are not recommended here. All legitimate protest measures can be taken legally, in the full light of day. Again, no attempts at secrecy are required. With the recent IRS settlement with UBS, and the corresponding disclosures of secret Swiss bank account information, some fears may arise that criminal prosecutions may arise if offshore accounts are established and used. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Since this administration has shown an alarming propensity to ignore or paper over unwelcome information and revenue projections, we must face them to face the truth about our determination by making them face the reality of declining revenues. When revenues to Washington falter seriously, then lawmakers may honestly be dragged kicking and screaming into facing reality. The alternative is to be led into economic slavery and bondage. Why should we foot the bill for that result?
You can and should avoid secrecy in taking all measures suggested above. Transparency is always good, not only so you can’t be accused of evasion, but also so you can share your successes with others who want to do the same. I’m sure as the rebellion progresses, a blog or forum will be established somewhere to just to discuss ‘how to’ do all this legally and tranparently. But open discussion is required to get the ‘grass fire’ to spread, and to allow the government to assess just how wide and deep the rebellion is (remember that a prairie fire can be seem coming from dozens, if not hundreds, of miles away! A bright line on a dark horizon is a clear warning to anybody [the government] in its path.)
And for those of you who find delight in wonderful little reciprocal ironies, we will be using the very tools that the Obama administration wants to promote in order to mobilize our tax rebellion: the internet infrastructure, globalization, and transparency (only in this case, it’s real transparency).
The original Boston Tea Party had a strong component that directly affected revenue for the North government. We should add that component to our own rebellion if we wish to be heard.