We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata slogan of the day

I have to pay 40% tax and everything. Which I don’t agree with. I can’t vote, why should I pay to a government I don’t necessarily agree with?

- Charlotte Church, chairing BBC2′s Have I got News for You. Out of the mouths of babes and children

10 comments to Samizdata slogan of the day

  • Ghaleon

    Indeed, I suggest to anyone who didn’t support the war in the Us not to pay is taxe…

  • Ghaleon

    I agree. People should not be forced to pay for government services they do not want or agree with.

  • BigFire

    If you don’t like the taxes you paid, you have the option to vote in the government that you like to fix this problem. Ms. Church’s problem is that she doesn’t have this option. I guess she could always change her residency to Monico for tax purpose.

  • BigFire: Oh, right then. I vote for me.

    This is the central nonsense of advocating democracy as ‘empowerment’. If I vote to not be taxed and I lose because a plurality of voters want to help themselves to my money, how in the hell does that empower me? The fact is I do NOT have the option to vote in the government that I like to fix this problem, only a vote to legitimise my own robbery and express a largely meaningless preference as to whether it will be by the corporatist statists of the right or the socialist statists of the left.

    Don’t vote, you will only encourage them and give a sheen of legitimacy to armed robbery. Tyranny of the majority is still tyranny.

    And yes, if she has any brains, she will get the hell out of this dump and move to Monaco.

  • Richard A. Heddleson

    I quite agree. I suggest all Americans who disagreed with the war should not pay taxes. The IRS will know how to deal with them.

  • Gonk

    Richard Heddleson is right, just like the mafia knows how to deal with people who refuse to pay ‘protection’ money. Same thing really.

  • Most Americans don’t have any choice about paying taxes. Our employers take the money out of our paychecks and send it directly to the IRS without us ever getting a say in the matter.

  • Byna

    The point that Charlotte was making is that there are different levels of rightness. Taxation with out representation is worse than taxation with representation.

    Further arguement.
    Assumption 1: Governments are neccesary.
    Assumption 2: Governments need money.
    Assumption 3: Governments collect money via taxation.

    Every person implicity (or explicity) agrees to abide by the laws of the country they reside in. If they do not decide to abide by the rules, the government is justified in either punishing or kicking that person out. Since taxes are a fact of living on a country, each person agrees to pay taxes.

    How just a country is depends on a few factors.
    How much influence do the people have over the government?
    How many inherent rights do the people have?
    Here is the single most important check on the justness of a government:
    Are the people allowed to leave that country?

    I’m sure there are more, but that is all I can think of right now.

    In Charlotte’s case, she has not achieved full citizenship yet, so she has very little influence over the government. But she will have more. She is also allowed to leave the country, with the agreement of her parents. While she might not like the current situation, she, and others, have agreed to live according to England’s rules.

    I’m hopefull that her exposure to the extreme rates of taxation will help to push her to a more conservative/libertarian bend.

    Byna

  • Malcolm

    I’m no anarchist, but the notion that a minor, who is not permitted to leave the country without parental permission either, has agreed to taxation either because she doesn’t leave the country or because she enjoys the benefits of government is pure bull.

    This hokum was dreamed up simply in order to make the State appear to be in conformity with traditional notions of voluntary agreement as the basis of obligation. Yes, taxes have to be paid, because we need a police force etc. But don’t say that she (or I) agreed to it: our agreement was never sought, nor given, and taxes are demanded utterly irrespective of our consent.

    The minimal-State to which I subscribe at least recognises that taxation for the police etc. is a least-worst compromise. Taxation is morally wrong; but practically speaking we would be worse off without it. That fact acts to remind us that every last penny taken must be fully justified, not frittered on “civic pride” projects, showered amongst supplicants, or used for universal provision of private goods.

  • Byna: Every person implicity (or explicity) agrees to abide by the laws of the country they reside in.

    No, it is not that simple. I accept being taxed for legitimate functions of a state, which is maintaining order in its various forms (such as defence, police, courts). Anything else is not legitimate to fund with violence backed manditory appropriation, regardless of who else voted for me to pay for it. That I obey those laws, the ones backing up the state’s illegitimate functions, is purely a matter of cost/benefit analysis: when I can break them safely, then I certainly do and have no moral problem evading a law with no legitimate basis.

    If they do not decide to abide by the rules, the government is justified in either punishing or kicking that person out. Since taxes are a fact of living on a country, each person agrees to pay taxes.

    Protection rackets are a fact of living in Palermo, does than mean the people owning businesses in that town ‘agree’ to pay the local mafia? Well sure, they agree if they do not want to get men with guns coming around. That is much the same reason I have paid the taxes that I have.

    If I paint your house because you have contracted with me to do so and you duly pay me what I am legitimatly owed, does that mean if *I* also decide you need a new path, a new roof and a few walls moved in your house, you must pay me for that too regardless of the fact you never wanted that stuff done in the first place?

    Now what does that remind you of?