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Correlation between U.S. Income Tax and Government Spending and National Debt

Although the 16th Amendment to the Constitution was passed by Congress on July 12, 1909, it took 1,302 days before it was ratified on February 3, 1913. The rational for legislating a tax on income was that it was clear that at the time that the nation’s solvency was in jeopardy, and that an income tax was necessary to maintain a balanced budget and avoid the United States from being a debtor nation, thus preserving our sovereignty.

However, although our national spending, as a percentage of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), remained relatively stable for some time (even after we repaid monies we borrowed to fund our support of World War I, following World War II our national mentality changed and rather than managing a surplus budget, it became the “norm” to spend more on government sponsored programs paid for through the issuance of debt instruments so long the increased income taxes imposed on U.S. persons (both individuals and business) was sufficient to manage that debt.  

Over the past forty years, however, our elected representatives and officials were like “kids in a candy store” and began to practice what some believe to be fiscal irresponsibility. Spending increased dramatically and so did our debt level. Some of the debt was magically hidden through the use of “temporary” fund transfers from what was intended to be special purpose funds (which can only be utilized for the specific purpose for which the fund was created) such as Social Security. Regardless that much attention was given to the fact that statistically the Social Security fund would not be sufficient to meet the demands of future retirees, our fiscal managers (those elected officials and representatives who we elected to serve and protect us) continued to borrow and spend until the national debt level, which had increased to $10 Trillion dollars by the turn of the 21st century, jumped dramatically to nearly $17 Trillion only 13 years later by the year 2013.  

Repeatedly over the past several years Congress and the President have haggled over the fact that we are heading for a fiscal cliff and without increasing the debt ceiling the government would shut down. Spending had gotten out of control and we were borrowing “from Peter to pay Paul”.  

There was once a joke that showed an income tax return, printed back in the 1950s) that said “How much did you make? Send it in”. Now if that were the new tax, and everyone paid everything they earned in taxes, there still would not be enough to pay our national debt. And even if we did, we-the people would have to borrow money to pay our state and local tax liability. 

As Pogo said, “We have faced the enemy, and the enemy is us”. We, the people to whom these elected sovereignty have sworn to serve and protect, have taken us to the fringe of fiscal disaster through reckless and irresponsible spending and debt. 

Now I would like to share with you something said by a member of Senator Ron Paul’s forum. It reads “The preamble to the bill of rights states that "In order to prevent the abuse and misconstruction of power, further restrictive clauses must be added".

The ninth amendment which reads "The enumeration of certain rights shall not be construed to disparage others retained by the people." What this means is that given that the Bill of Rights are restrictive clauses of the government, the restrictive clauses listed are not the only restrictive clauses.

So the 16th amendment does give Congress the power to collect taxes from whatever source derived HOWEVER it does is prohibited under the ninth amendment to collect taxes for political gestures such as that everyone should "pay their fair share", tax for no reason, tax for unconstitutional spending, tax for unconstitutional debt, or tax for wasteful spending.

The Bill of Rights also limits the judicial branch in that upholding the following the abuse of taxing powers is also an abuse of judicial power.” 

I want you to write to your Congressional Representative and to the President of the United States and remind them of their responsibilities, and that we-the people have elected them to office to serve and protect the common welfare of the people of the United States, and that it is we-the people who can decide to fire them come the next election.


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