In a Democracy, Taxation is Not Punitive

Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 of the Constitution of the United States:

The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.

Prior to the early 20th century, most federal revenue came from tariffs rather than taxes, although Congress had often imposed excise taxes on various goods. The Revenue Act of 1861 had introduced the first federal income tax, but that tax was repealed in 1872. During the late nineteenth century, various groups, including the Populist Party, favored the establishment of a progressive income tax at the federal level. These groups believed that tariffs unfairly taxed the poor, and they favored using the income tax to shift the tax burden onto wealthier individuals. 

"In 1909, during the debate over the Payne–Aldrich Tariff Act, Congress proposed the Sixteenth Amendment to the states. Though conservative Republican leaders had initially expected that the amendment would not be ratified, a coalition of Democrats, progressive Republicans, and other groups ensured that the necessary number of states ratified the amendment. Shortly after the amendment was ratified, Congress imposed a federal income tax with the Revenue Act of 1913. The Supreme Court upheld that income tax in the 1916 case of Brushaber v. Union Pacific Railroad Co., and the federal government has continued to levy an income tax since 1913."

The Sixteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States:

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.


Nowhere in the primary or rudimentary materials one might research and review on the question, does the notion that taxes are a form of punishment appear.

Nor is the idea expressed in any indirect or subtle manner...

In our system, taxation is not punishment or punitive in imposition or collection.

Taxation in a Democracy should be a manifestation of the egalitarian impulse upon which the Democratic paradigm rests.

So-called free market capitalists see taxes as a cost of doing business that should be reduced or mitigated at every turn and completely eliminated when and where possible.

Taxation is the fault line that runs between Democracy and Capitalism.

The narrative that suggests that taxing wealthy individuals and corporations is punitive is hypocritical and disingenuous at best.

At worst, the notion that taxation is punishment is an outright lie....

Views: 119

Comment by koshersalaami on February 20, 2019 at 3:21pm

I have finally figured out that the way you can tell a conservative is that they value markets over air. 

Past that, I have a question:

What egalitarian impulse? Egalitarian impulses are a liberal thing. That’s become more and more obvious.

Comment by Ron Powell on February 20, 2019 at 3:51pm

"What egalitarian impulse? "

"All men are created equal..."

"Equal Justice Under Law"

"One Man One Vote"

Democracy is predicated on the notion that the rights of any citizen are equal to the rights of all citizens...

Comment by koshersalaami on February 20, 2019 at 4:51pm

Sarcasm. I realize that’s unexpected coming from an habitual literalist like me. At this point, Republican egalitarianism has mainly turned phony

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on February 20, 2019 at 4:57pm

"In a Democracy, Taxation is Not Punitive"

Conversely, a system in which rich people and wealthy corporations make mega profits, yet pay zero tax on them is "punitive democracy".

Amazon will pay $0 in taxes on $11,200,000,000 in profit for 2018

Comment by koshersalaami on February 20, 2019 at 6:16pm

I agree with Amy

Comment by Ron Powell on February 20, 2019 at 7:10pm

There's no reason to disagree with Amy....

Her assessment is precisely what is wrong here.

It is exactly what needs to be addressed and adjusted....

Any candidate, whether he or she be Republican, Democrat, or Independent,  who doesn't express an appropriate narrative and an effective remedial plan as  the priority of reformative government, Is not fit for serious consideration.... 

Comment by Doc Vega on February 20, 2019 at 7:11pm

Confiscatory taxation also termed progressive taxes have disproportionately burdened the US citizen population and has caused economic suppression! The founding forefathers never intended unapportioned taxes against wages an\d earnings! Ron. you're wrong! The people have neem deceived! Income tax goes to the Federal Reserve a private cartel of European families who formed the original Central Bank our forefathers rebelled against! Wake up and get your shit straight! We never had income taxes until 1913 when Woodrow Wilson, an anti Semitic allowed the Federal Reserve to be resurrected and the IRS a terrorist arm of the bank to begin the fiscal enslavement of the American people! And Ron you are full of shit! And the rest of you who would willingly submit to such tyranny!

Comment by Doc Vega on February 20, 2019 at 7:15pm

Safe Bet class warfare will never solve the economic problems of the country! Corporations hire people, purchase services and products and stimulate economic activity! You are merely parroting the Communist diatribe! We do not need socialism!

Comment by Ron Powell on February 20, 2019 at 7:34pm

Vega, mindless hysteria is not a model for economic policy or a paradigm for representative democracy....

Yes, the people have been deceived by a master of bait and switch and misdirection. What Trump has done with the recent tax cut for the wealthy borders on obscene and immoral...

Comment by Safe Bet's Amy on February 20, 2019 at 9:40pm

"We do not need socialism!"

SUUUURE we don't.  Socialism, especially democratic socialism, never has and never will work in 'Murica...

well...  at least prior to 1776 anyways...

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