It was repealed in 1873.
An Income Tax was attempted in 1894, but the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional in Pollock v Farmers’ Loan .
Justice Stephen J. Field concurred:
The income tax law under consideration…is class legislation.
Whenever a distinction is made in the burdens a law imposes or in the benefits it confers on any citizens by reason of their birth, or wealth, or religion, it is class legislation, and leads inevitably to oppression and abuses…
Justice Field continued, “It is the same in essential character as that of the English income statute of 1691, which taxed Protestants at a certain rate, Catholics, as a class, at double the rate of Protestants, and Jews at another and separate rate.”
With World War I threatening, Democrat President Woodrow Wilson thought reducing Tariff Taxes on imports between countries would ease tensions and bring world peace.
Wilson proposed replacing reduced Tariff revenue with an Income Tax on the very wealthy, passed in 1913 with the 16th Amendment.
Originally a one percent tax on the top one percent richest people, the income tax was a ‘soak-the-rich’ tax intended for industrialists Rockefeller, Carnegie, Vanderbilt, Astor, Fisk, Flagler, Gould, Harriman, Mellon, J.P. Morgan, and Schwab.
These industrialists avoided the Income Tax by transferring assets into tax-free charitable and educational foundations, such as the Rockefeller Foundation and Carnegie Foundation.
This tax-free category had previously been for churches, which provided social welfare by founding hospitals, medical clinics, orphanages, schools, and soup kitchens where they cared for orphans, widows, maimed soldiers, prisoners, unwed mothers, widows, shut-ins, homeless, juvenile delinquents, and immigrants.
Churches also helped maintain a virtuous populace which reduced crime, child abuse, derelicts, and other social ills, which otherwise are immense financial burdens on state budgets.
In 1942, with World War II, Democrat President Franklin Roosevelt increased and expanded the Federal Income Tax with “the greatest tax bill in American history,” and instituted paycheck withholding.
John F. Kennedy stated, April 20, 1961, “In meeting the demands of war finance, the individual income tax moved from a selective tax imposed on the wealthy to the means by which the great majority of our citizens participate in paying.”
Beardsley Ruml, chairman of Macy’s Department Store, became director of the New York Federal Reserve Bank, where he promoted the idea of withholding taxes from people’s paychecks.
Kennedy explained, April 20, 1961, “Withholding…on wages and salaries (was)… introduced during the war when the income tax was extended to millions of new taxpayers.”
Businesses gradually became subject to:
-Higher Wages & Benefits;
-More Governmental Bureaucracy;
-More Environmental Restrictions; and
-Political Favoritism toward some companies over others.
Many businesses faced the alternative of going out of business or going out of the country.
As jobs were outsourced to stay competitive, patriotic attachments diminished, giving rise to financial globalists.
Kennedy noticed, February 6, 1961, “I have asked the secretary of the treasury to report on whether present tax laws may be stimulating in undue amounts the flow of American capital to the industrial countries abroad.”
Kennedy told Congress, April 20, 1961, “In those countries where income taxes are lower than in the United States, the ability to defer the payment of U.S. tax by retaining income in the subsidiary companies provides a tax advantage for companies operating through overseas subsidiaries that is not available to companies operating solely in the United States.”
To remedy this, Democrat President Kennedy proposed a stimulus plan of lowering taxes across the board,
as he stated September 18, 1963:
A tax cut means higher family income and higher business profits and a balanced Federal budget.
Every taxpayer and his family will have more money left over after taxes for a new car, a new home, new conveniences, education, and investment.
Every businessman can keep a higher percentage of his profits in his cash register or put it to work expanding or improving his business, and as the national income grows, the Federal Government will ultimately end up with more revenues.
Kennedy stated, January 17, 1963, “Lower rates of taxation will stimulate economic activity and so raise the levels of personal and corporate income as to yield within a few years an increased – not a reduced – flow of revenues to the federal government.”
Kennedy stated, November 20, 1962,:
It is a paradoxical truth that tax rates are too high and tax revenues are too low and the soundest way to raise the revenues in the long run is to cut the rates now…
Cutting taxes now is not to incur a budget deficit, but to achieve the more prosperous, expanding economy which can bring a budget surplus.
Kennedy stated in his Annual Message, January 21, 1963:
In today’s economy, fiscal prudence and responsibility call for tax reduction even if it temporarily enlarges the Federal deficit – why reducing taxes is the best way open to us to increase revenues…
It is no contradiction – the most important single thing we can do to stimulate investment in today’s economy is to raise consumption by major reduction of individual income tax rates.
JFK mentioned in his Message to Congress on Tax Reduction, January 24, 1963, “Our tax system still siphons out of the private economy too large a share of personal and business purchasing power and reduces the incentive for risk, investment and effort — thereby aborting our recoveries and stifling our national growth rate.”
Whereas Kennedy wanted to reduce taxes to stimulate the economy, an economist, John Maynard Keynes, proposed stimulating the economy by going in debt.
Keynes reasoned that if the government went in debt spending money in the private sector to create jobs, those jobs would pay taxes and pay off the debt.
Unfortunately, politicians were tempted to continually increase debt in order to funnel money to their districts and constituencies to help them get reelected, hoping the next Congress would be responsible and pay it off.
The Keynesian debt-stimulated economy has resulted in an unsustainable $17 trillion national debt.
On the other side of the world, taxes were used by Soviet Communist Vladimir Lenin to intentionally eliminate business owners, called ‘bourgeoisie,’ so they could not threaten his centralized government:
The way to crush the bourgeoisie is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation.
After the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, communist labor and community organizers infiltrated other countries, including the United States, where they formed tax-free educational foundations to agitate for political change and a world-wide workers’ revolution.
This resulted in the federal government responding by limiting what tax-free organizations could do politically.
In the style of Democrat President Kennedy, Republican President Ronald Reagan stated in 1988:
I believe God did give mankind unlimited gifts to invent, produce and create.
And for that reason it would be wrong for governments to devise a tax structure that suppresses those gifts.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.