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Did you know that Income tax is a 'temporary measure?'

  • 26-04-2021 2:13am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 237 ✭✭ RulesOfNature


    You can google this right now. In most (I want to say all but I haven't been able to research every country's tax law) western nations Income tax is by law only a temporary measure that was brought upon during times of war. Yes there is technically always war but the laws signed when income tax was initiated states that they were to expire AFTER that specific war ended.

    Here are a few examples, and Ireland is in there too:

    USA: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Revenue_Act_of_1861
    What happened: Abe Lincoln imposed a 4% temporary income tax to fund the civil war. After the war ended the legislators convinced the public that in order to rebuild infrastructure and industrialize parts of the south to wean them off slavery they need to keep this tax for the next few years at least. They never stopped this temporary measure and instead increased it every year to an effective 20%-40% depending on the state.

    UK: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Income_Tax_Act_1842
    What happened: There was no real justification for this in terms of ideological appeal, unless you're a fan of British imperialism. By the time the Crimean war started it was pretty much set it stone. The UK had to fund its overseas imperialist interests, and by WW1 it was never going to disappear. It was 2.9%, which again went up and up every year to an effective 20-45%.

    Canada: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Income_tax_in_Canada
    What Happened: WW1 happened. Heres a direct paste from the Wiki page: Wartime expenses forced the Tories to re-consider their options and in 1918, the wartime government under Sir Robert Borden, imposed a "temporary" income tax to cover expenses. Despite the new tax the Canadian government ran up considerable debts during the war and were unable to forgo income tax revenue after the war ended. With the election of the Liberal government of Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King, much of the National Policy was dismantled and income tax has remained in place ever since.

    Ireland: http://www.budget.gov.ie/Budgets/2015/Documents/EY_Historical_Dev_International_Context_Irish_%20Corporation_Tax.pdf

    What Happened: While still a subject of the crown, an income tax rate of 10% (Notice how its higher than the British tax, despite the nation being abjectly poor) was imposed in Ireland to fund the Napoleonic war. Read the tax of 1842 above for what happens after next. After WW1 Britain let go of its Imperialist ambitions, and in a stunning act Ireland adopts the British taxation system, despite effectively not having the need to recoup after a World War it did not participate in. As usual the tax rates inched every year by half a percent or so to where it is now, up to 40%.

    What am I trying to say with all this information? Not much. I haven't researched every country but so far its been the exact same pattern: Justify taxation with a war, then rejustify keeping it to rebuild destroyed infrastructure CAUSED by the war, then increase it by half a percent every year that way it seems reasonable and not out of line. With every generation seeing an increase of 5-10% it doesnt seem too much to the average person. But the problem is the fiat system is inflationary by design - by decreasing the purchasing power of your money every year you are thus motivated to work and be productive to acquire more money, and to purchase assets to hedge against inflation. Taxes is how fiat controls inflation, which necessitates increasing it every year.

    Mind you these taxes were imposed before the fiat system was codified. It might be worth noting that the fiat system, at least according to a few economists ( https://www.jstor.org/stable/41486019 ) exists to permanently intertwine taxes with all aspects of society from the smallest purchase of chocolate to travel, to marriage etc. This intertwining makes it possible to include everyone into a market economy and thus every bit of labor and productivity contributes to the macroeconomic structure of the nation.This way the entire population is participating, but the downside is this means income taxes are now irremovable without fundamentally dismantling society.

    It is entirely possible that in a generation or so there will be income taxes in the range of 80-90%. It sounds insane now but try telling the average person from the 1850s that their temporary 4% income tax will be a permanent 40% in 2 generations. Its not that out of line. Its the same pattern.

    In a related sense, I've also found out that “Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program” – Milton Friedman.

    Remember in the past 20 years what other 'Temporary Measures' have become permanent? In the wider world there is Homeland Security, Guantanamo Bay, Invasive Surveillance, War in the Middle East. These temporary measures became permanent because it allows the ruling class to effectively impose laws (in some cases break those laws) to increase effective policing, or continue to profit from various industries that are propped up by war.

    I wonder what temporary measures right now will become permanent too?


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Comments

  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 315 ✭✭ coinop


    Just like the M1 motorway toll was temporary.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,115 ✭✭✭ con747


    Just like life, it's a temporary measure.


  • Registered Users Posts: 78,148 ✭✭✭✭ Victor


    My, do I foresee this thread as:

    !. A fountain of novel discovery or
    2. The rehashing of misguided anecdote and rumours bordering on conspiracy theory material that appeals to bargain basement libertarians?

    "despite effectively not having the need to recoup after a World War it did not participate in." - the country was at war 1914-23, whether it liked it or not. More than 50,000 dead and the country trashed. You also fail to mention that taxes fell after independence and nuances like the Irish Boundary Commission.
    coinop wrote: »
    Just like the M1 motorway toll was temporary.
    Who said this? People down the pub engaging in wishful thinking?


  • Registered Users Posts: 357 ✭✭ Normal One


    Isn't life just a temporary blip on the journey.


  • Registered Users Posts: 25,620 ✭✭✭✭ Wanderer78


    I avoid income tax now, I just became extremely wealthy, job done


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,202 ✭✭✭ MayoSalmon


    Income taxation is pure theft.


  • Registered Users Posts: 25,620 ✭✭✭✭ Wanderer78


    MayoSalmon wrote:
    Income taxation is pure theft.

    Any alternatives to running our country and servicing our debts?


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,677 ✭✭✭ 3DataModem


    All taxation is theft, but it is theft in service of the social contract.

    We want roads, hospitals, schools, and social welfare for the less fortunate, medicine for the sick and dying, and wheelchairs for the disabled. We want to ensure that what property we have is secure (police/military), and that we have recourse when someone does us wrong (courts), and we want to make sure that people beyond their working age can have their basic living needs met (pensions).

    As a society we have agreed tacitly to maintain this "theft under duress" system because life will generally be better for all if we do so. There's horrible waste, and horrible inefficiencies (especially in democracies) but most people generally accept this system has enough fairness and enough benefit to be sustainable, and is better than chaos.

    If you are interested in where Irish tax goes, take a look: https://img2.thejournal.ie/inline/1721503/original/?width=630&version=1721503


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,202 ✭✭✭ MayoSalmon


    Wanderer78 wrote: »
    Any alternatives to running our country and servicing our debts?

    Everything but income taxation is okay as at least there is "some" consent involved there...stop thieving the wallet of the worker


  • Registered Users Posts: 25,620 ✭✭✭✭ Wanderer78


    3DataModem wrote:
    As a society we have agreed tacitly to maintain this "theft under duress" system because life will generally be better for all if we do so. There's horrible waste, and horrible inefficiencies (especially in democracies) but most people generally accept this system has enough fairness and enough benefit to be sustainable, and is better than chaos.

    So it's not really theft at all, it's an automatic sign up upon arrival, and virtually impossible to opt out, ever. Do we really have democracy, is what we have, truly democratic, and is what we have truly fair?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 25,620 ✭✭✭✭ Wanderer78


    MayoSalmon wrote:
    Everything but income taxation is okay as at least there is "some" consent involved there...stop thieving the wallet of the worker

    As others have pointed out, how do you propose we create and run the critical services and infrastructure we need, if income tax does not exist, and please explain how this is theft?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,894 ✭✭✭ Former Former Former


    You can always opt out of paying tax to the state. Just go live somewhere else. Please.


  • Registered Users Posts: 25,620 ✭✭✭✭ Wanderer78


    You can always opt out of paying tax. Just go live somewhere else. Please.

    Where?


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Home & Garden Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators Posts: 20,751 CMod ✭✭✭✭ Pawwed Rig


    At least they got rid of USC like they promised




    oh wait


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,202 ✭✭✭ MayoSalmon


    Wanderer78 wrote: »
    As others have pointed out, how do you propose we create and run the critical services and infrastructure we need, if income tax does not exist, and please explain how this is theft?

    Consumption tax is okay to levy..just told you that.

    It's theft by its very nature... government have no right to take a portion of my income...like why would they. Furthermore if I withold the threat of force aka prison time is real.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,511 ✭✭✭ whippet


    MayoSalmon wrote: »
    Everything but income taxation is okay as at least there is "some" consent involved there...stop thieving the wallet of the worker

    Who’s wallet should be used to pay ?

    The Freemen on the Land theory is that taxation is voluntary and you have the right to just refuse to pay. All from the same line of ‘consent’ ... but as we all know these arguments have been debunked time abs time again .. but nevertheless a few people get sucked in to believing it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 656 ✭✭✭ hurleronditch



    It is entirely possible that in a generation or so there will be income taxes in the range of 80-90%. It sounds insane now but try telling the average person from the 1850s that their temporary 4% income tax will be a permanent 40% in 2 generations. Its not that out of line. Its the same pattern.

    How to you put this comment in the context of income taxes being 65% or so in the 1980s?

    It’s not a linear upward progression from 4% to the current 40+%, it’s been jumping around but consistently in the 40% range for almost 30 years at this stage, so there’s zero evidence of this pattern heading for 80-90%.

    I don’t love paying the tax that I do, but I completely understand it is a necessary evil. The only reform I would propose is a more American style system with lower income taxes and higher property taxes. The country has a massive problem with housing within a commutable distance of Dublin City in particular, with a huge amount of housing stock almost empty within a half an hours drive of O’Connell street, with 3 and 4 bed houses lived in by one or two elderly people, holding on to large houses for the one time a year the kids come back at Christmas. Skewing the tax regime to encourage them to move elsewhere and rewarding the working young with bower income tax will benefit all. The problem is it needs somewhere established for the older people to move to, the US is much better set up for this with condo living arrangements, do we turn Wexford into our Florida and move the greys brigade down there to well structured apartment and assisted living set ups?


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 891 sebdavis


    I don’t have a problem with tax, if I pay tax then I get access to hospital, roads etc

    I do have a problem with social welfare and all that is dragged along with it, giving people the ability to be a career unemployed is and never was a good system.

    Year on year providing a pay raise while people who actually work are struggling is what has seriously gone wrong

    Child benefit? If you can’t afford to have children don’t have them. Why do you need a paid for having children?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,202 ✭✭✭ MayoSalmon


    sebdavis wrote: »
    I don’t have a problem with tax, if I pay tax then I get access to hospital, roads etc

    I do have a problem with social welfare and all that is dragged along with it, giving people the ability to be a career unemployed is and never was a good system.

    Year on year providing a pay raise while people who actually work are struggling is what has seriously gone wrong

    Child benefit? If you can’t afford to have children don’t have them. Why do you need a paid for having children?

    You can have access to all those things without tax... you think if we didnt have tax society would just decide well the government won't build these things so I guess we don't want roads, schools, hospitals now...lol


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,973 ✭✭✭ Allinall


    MayoSalmon wrote: »
    Consumption tax is okay to levy..just told you that.

    It's theft by its very nature... government have no right to take a portion of my income...like why would they. Furthermore if I withold the threat of force aka prison time is real.

    Government do have a right to take a portion of income.

    We, as a collective give them that right.

    We, also as a collective, deny any individual from opting out of the collective.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,314 ✭✭✭ paw patrol


    Pawwed Rig wrote: »
    At least they got rid of USC like they promised




    oh wait

    PRSI was for 2 years in the 1970s too.

    I see a pattern here...


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,378 ✭✭✭ DubInMeath


    Always amusing to see the libertarian and NP economists embarrassing themselves


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Music Moderators, Regional East Moderators, Regional Midlands Moderators, Regional Midwest Moderators, Regional Abroad Moderators, Regional North Mods, Regional West Moderators, Regional South East Moderators, Regional North East Moderators, Regional North West Moderators, Regional South Moderators Posts: 7,941 CMod ✭✭✭✭ Gaspode


    All I can say is so what, temporary measures regularly become permanent. My dad told my mum he'd only put it in for a second, and well here I am.


  • Registered Users Posts: 41,355 ✭✭✭✭ SEPT 23 1989


    The Covid Solidarity Tax will be temporary as well


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 891 sebdavis


    MayoSalmon wrote: »
    You can have access to all those things without tax... you think if we didnt have tax society would just decide well the government won't build these things so I guess we don't want roads, schools, hospitals now...lol

    Magic money tree going to pay for them?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,314 ✭✭✭ paw patrol


    3DataModem wrote: »
    All taxation is theft, but it is theft in service of the social contract.

    We want roads, hospitals, schools, and social welfare for the less fortunate, medicine for the sick and dying, and wheelchairs for the disabled. We want to ensure that what property we have is secure (police/military), and that we have recourse when someone does us wrong (courts), and we want to make sure that people beyond their working age can have their basic living needs met (pensions).

    As a society we have agreed tacitly to maintain this "theft under duress" system because life will generally be better for all if we do so. There's horrible waste, and horrible inefficiencies (especially in democracies) but most people generally accept this system has enough fairness and enough benefit to be sustainable, and is better than chaos.

    If you are interested in where Irish tax goes, take a look: https://img2.thejournal.ie/inline/1721503/original/?width=630&version=1721503

    if you take a worker persons money by force (under the threat of the law/jail) then it's theft you can jazz it up with fancy words but it's pure theft.

    What would we have without it? People would gladly pay voluntary for roads/hospitals etc... and services that helped all of society.

    But that isn't what happens. We have monies side tracked in to pet projects and avenues that does society no good. The NGO sector for one.
    Millions poured into this sector to achieve what?
    The money is not only being taken by force but wasted on utter gash.
    There is no accountability and those that mess up pay no price for this unlike the private sector.

    you say
    but most people generally accept this system has enough fairness and enough benefit to be sustainable, and is better than chaos.

    You can't say there would be chaos , people would pay for proper services but I'd argue there is a mix of apathy and ignorance within the population.
    I find the political system is set up in such a way that the average working man has no access or influence unless they join a party machine.

    I email my TDs on occasion. I have never received satisfaction from any minor to international viewpoint. Party/state line continually returned.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 891 sebdavis


    paw patrol wrote: »
    if you take a worker persons money by force (under the threat of the law/jail) then it's theft you can jazz it up with fancy words but it's pure theft.

    What would we have without it? People would gladly pay voluntary for roads/hospitals etc... and services that helped all of society.

    But that isn't what happens. We have monies side tracked in to pet projects and avenues that does society no good. The NGO sector for one.
    Millions poured into this sector to achieve what?
    The money is not only being taken by force but wasted on utter gash.
    There is no accountability and those that mess up pay no price for this unlike the private sector.

    you say



    You can't say there would be chaos , people would pay for proper services but I'd argue there is a mix of apathy and ignorance within the population.
    I find the political system is set up in such a way that the average working man has no access or influence unless they join a party machine.

    I email my TDs on occasion. I have never received satisfaction from any minor to international viewpoint. Party/state line continually returned.

    Are you having a laugh? People gladly pay? Not a chance in hell, not in ireland

    You would have a few people and the rest would sit back. Then when they get sick you would have a great parade about what a lovely fellow he is, his mammy was lovely and the hospitals should threat him. Ahh gawd the poor fellow....


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,202 ✭✭✭ MayoSalmon


    sebdavis wrote: »
    Magic money tree going to pay for them?

    Same people who pay for them today will pay tomorrow...what's a magic tree got to do with it?!


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,212 ✭✭✭ The J Stands for Jay


    The Covid Solidarity Tax will be temporary as well

    What will CST be quietly changed to stand for when it doesn't disappear?


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  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    paw patrol wrote: »
    if you take a worker persons money by force (under the threat of the law/jail) then it's theft you can jazz it up with fancy words but it's pure theft.

    Actually, that would be robbery.

    So not pure theft at all


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