The IRS & the Constitution

, Irene Warren, Leave a comment

Sept. 17, 2008, marked the 221st Anniversary of the United States Constitution, a time when many reflect on America’s heritage and freedoms. However, one organization is exercising one of its First Amendment rights by filing a People’s Petition for Redress concerning the ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment this year, an action to restore order within the U.S. Constitution.

We the People Foundation for Constitutional Education, Inc. is a 501(c)( 3) organization, established November 24, 1997. They filed a People’s Petition for Redress claiming that the United States government has violated the U.S. Constitution seven times, as Bob Schulz, founder and chairman of the organization, explained.

“In July 2004, almost 2,000 Americans filed a landmark lawsuit against the U.S. Government seeking to have the federal judiciary declare—for the first time in history—the constitutional meaning of the First Amendment petition clause, including the right of the people to enforce the Right of Petition if Redress is denied,” Schulz explained, as he recited a passage from one of his statements published on his company’s website. “We the people believe the Right to Petition is, in fact, the capstone right of the Bill of Rights and that its effect is the direct exercise of popular sovereignty—the first grand right of the Founding documents that declares government is the servant of man.”

Schulz argues, as he has also indicated on his company’s website that “the right to petition is the profound, peaceful and constitutional solution that will save our Republic and restore constitutional order to our nation.”

During a recent telephone interview between Schulz and this news correspondent in August, he explained, “the only course of redress we’re seeking is to have our elected representatives answer the questions that we’ve submitted in the Petition to Redress Grievance in June 2008.” “We’ve given the government 40 days to respond to our Redress, but still no response.”

Schulz explained that the petition that he submitted to the United States Government included the following alleged violations of the Constitution: U.S. aid to Israel, illegal immigration, North American Union, the Iraq War, The Patriot Act, the Federal Reserve, and income tax fraud.

The We The People Foundation is apparently not the only group attempting to address congress about Sixteenth Amendment rights. Tax attorney Jeffrey Dickstein, of Fox Point, Wisconsin, represented Bill Benson, author of the book The Law that Never Was, for allegedly spreading the falsehood that the Sixteenth Amendment was not ratified, and that Americans are not legally required to file an income tax return.

Thus, the United States Government has sued Bill Benson for his alleged actions; however, Benson and his attorney continue to battle it out in the courts that their claim will prove true that the Sixteenth Amendment is unconstitutional, which raises a another key question: How did American citizens come to pay an income tax on labor? And, is the IRS in violation of the U.S. Constitution by imposing a labor tax on American citizens, without appropriations?

The Columbia Law Review explained tax apportionment in great detail in 1910:
“In the context of the Constitution, apportionment means that each state gets a number appropriate to its population. For example, Representatives are apportioned among the states, with the most populous getting the greater share. Direct taxes (of which there are none today) were to be charged to the states in this manner as well.”

The constitution declares, that a capitation tax is a direct tax; and both in theory and practice, a tax on land is deemed to be a direct tax… The provision was made in favor of the southern states; they possessed a large number of slaves; they had extensive tracts of territory, thinly settled, and not very productive. A majority of the states had but few slaves, and several of them a limited territory, well settled, and in a high state of cultivation. The southern states, if no provision had been introduced in the constitution, would have been wholly at the mercy of the other states. Congress in such case, might tax slaves, at discretion or arbitrarily, and land in every part of the Union, after the same rate or measure: so much a head, in the first instance, and so much an acre, in the second. To guard them against imposition, in these particulars, was the reason of introducing the clause in the constitution,” according to the Columbia Law Review and written by Supreme Court Justice William Paterson in Hylton v. US (3US 171 1796) (emphasis added).

Thus, Dickstein attempts to answer Sixteenth Amendment discrepancies from a legal standpoint; fueled with court hearings and legal documentation, he presents his argument.

The Sixteenth Amendment reads: “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states and without regard to any census or enumeration,” according to the Law Encyclopedia. Prior to 1913, there was no levy on income tax.

Dickstein explained, “In 1894 Congress passed an income tax act very similar to very similar to the current income tax law.” However, in a telephone interview with this correspondent on August 31, 2008, he explained, as his website also notes, “that law was challenged on the basis that a tax on income is a direct tax, the United States Constitution requires direct taxes to be apportioned.” Based on this fact, Dickstein confirmed that “the United States Supreme Court agreed and held the income tax act was unconstitutional in Pollock v. Farmers’ Loan & Trust Co., 157 U.S. 429, aff. Reh., 158 U.S. 601 (1895).”

Irene Warren is an intern at the American Journalism Center, a training program run by Accuracy in Media and Accuracy in Academia.


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