Life Free or Die!

Well, I think Ed Brown, the notorious tax protester, is going to choose the latter option.  It’s a very well written post.  These are the kinds of people I’d honestly prefer not have guns.   They make normal gun owners look like whack jobs.  Taxes are not a reason to threaten to murder people, and whether he ends up dead or in prison, I won’t shed a tear for him.

But I will say this, his situation is an interesting study in how power works.  If you defy your governments laws, eventually men with guns will come and exert the government’s power over you.   All power comes down to that.   To those people who believe that small arms can never be effective against an oppressive government, Ed Brown’s continuing resistance to government power shows that the notion is incorrect.  If it wasn’t for being armed, he’d be in federal custody already.

I believe Mr. Brown is gravely mistaken in his belief that the government has gotten so out of control that violence is an acceptable solution.   I’m sympathetic to the idea that the government has made too many encroachments into our liberties, and that our federal government exercises power beyond its constitutional limits, but the government has done no wrong so grave that taking up arms against it, and against its agents, it warranted.

19 thoughts on “Life Free or Die!”

  1. Actually, I think I’m going to disagree with you here, Sebastian. Mr. Brown isn’t the one initiating the violence, the government is.

    I’d bet a few dollars that Mr. Brown stays to himself. That if the Feds never showed up again that no blood would ever be spilled. Mr. Brown and his family (crazy or not) would continue to live like they are and no lives would be lost.

    But it won’t happen that way. The Government assumes that some portion of Mr. Brown’s hard labor and work belongs to them. Some of it actually does as Mr. Brown has, at some point and time, taken advantage of the government’s intrusions into private life. But I would venture to say that the amount has already been paid a hundred fold.

    Here’s the thing. Some power hungry bureaucrat looks at his Excel spreadsheet and sees a number that is in the red. Said bureaucrat feels it is within his power to take that money. When the true owner of that money refuses to hand it over, that same bureaucrat will order for imprisonment, and if that is resisted, execution.

    None of this is Mr. Brown’s fault. He simply wants to be left alone. It’s like a child hitting another child for poking him. The poker is to blame, not the pokee.

    And I think the government has gone that far off track. The problem is that there is no one single, line in the sand type event to get us pissed off enough to do something about it. Ed had a line and it was crossed for him.

    We need the crazy Ed’s in the world who aren’t so tied up in their 401k’s, Hi-Def TV’s and microwave food that they can remind the government that they only operate out of force and that we, as Americans, still have the same force available to us.

    This isn’t something I want to see happen, but I’m afraid it’s going to start happening soon enough. If you leave Mr. Brown alone, there will be no bloodshed. I’m willing to bet the Feds will do no such thing.

  2. I’m not the type of libertarian that believes taxation is theft. I do think my taxes are too high, and I’m not a big fan of the income tax, but it’s all within Congress’ legitimate powers under the constitution, and there are penalties for not paying taxes. By threatening government officials, who are upholding the rule of law, he’s crossing the line. I favor a strong respect for individual liberty, but I do not favor anarchy. In order for our rights to be protected against incursion by others, we abrogate some of our rights to constitute governments, and we have to pay taxes to that government.

    I don’t bemoan a man for having a line. We all have that a line at which point a government becomes criminal enough to warrant violence against it, but I don’t think Brown’s line is anywhere near reasonable. I admit, I have to admire the man for being willing to die for his beliefs, and put his money where his mouth is, but I just can’t abide by anarchy.

    Keep in mind it was our founding fathers who were the ones to put down The Whiskey Rebellion, to enforce the federal government’s power to tax. The same folks who wrote our constitution and believed strongly in individual liberty, still understood the need for the rule of law, and the consequences of allowing people to thwart it with impunity.

  3. I think a factor that helped put down the Whiskey rebellion was that the militia was involved in stopping them, not career LEOs or bureaucrats.

    Of course, I don’t really expect a sudden militia to form, but people could hold rallies to protest his actions. Or it can be taken that people not protesting the federal government are inherently showing their acceptance of it.

    …whatever. What I just said was stupid.

  4. Robb:

    I disagree. Ed Brown was looking for a fight from the beginning. He tried to play tax loopholes that weren’t , stopped showing up at his trial, and has been calling for martyrdom since the beginning. He wants the authorities to start firing first so he can die in a blaze of glory.

    His whole argument is that there is no law for income taxation. Besides the 16th amendment, there’s US Code 26.

    He’s a nutball who believes in Zionist Illuminati Masonic conspiracies around every corner.

  5. actually the 16th amendment has never satisfied the ratification requirements as demanded in the constitution. Since that is the enabling amendment for the code you listed, it too is not technically legal.

    Ergo, regardless of yours or my willingness to pay taxes to sustain our nation, the forced taxation is not technically legal and will not be until the 16th is properly ratified. Of course, the government could claim the weight and longevity of custom as de facto ratification, but that would be a very dangerous road to go down.

  6. The 16th was properly ratified. 38 states passed it. That argument is at the point that it’s considered frivolous by every court in the nation because it has no evidence to support it.

  7. I didn’t know Mr. Brown’s history. I stand corrected.

    However, I still think it’s important for a nut case to go out with a bang here and there ;)

  8. Actually, I wasn’t aware of the guy’s full history when I blogged this. I knew a few things here and there. He’s much nuttier than I originally thought.

  9. I posted something about him way back and yes he is just that nutty.

    I,like most here, hate paying taxes and would love to see it replaced. Replaced with what,not sure,perhaps some along the lines of the flat or fair tax.

  10. Secretary of State Knox declared it ratified by 38 states, in actuality on 20 states actually legally ratified it leaving the ratification process 16 short of the necessary 36.

    Most wrongly declared states failed to follow their own state constitutions, others changed the wording (a no-no) Kentucky voted ratification but dropped the words “on income”, so then they did not ratify an income tax. When the error was corrected and a revote taken the Kentucky state Senate rejected it.Yet Knox counted it.

    go here to read more.

  11. Secretary of State Knox declared it ratified by 38 states, in actuality on 20 states actually legally ratified it leaving the ratification process 16 short of the necessary 36.

    Most wrongly declared states failed to follow their own state constitutions, others changed the wording (a no-no) Kentucky voted ratification but dropped the words “on income”, so when they did not ratify and income tax. When the error was corrected and a revote took place the Kentucky state Senate rejected it.

    go here to read more. there is lots of material on this. Knox lied and knew it. Though, this reference doesn’t state so so bluntly.

  12. wordpress would not let me post the reference. Google ratification of the 16th amendment.

  13. Sorry for the multi-post, couldn’t tell what was happening with comments.

  14. No it was not. It was declared ratified and has been in operation ever since, but it has not yet been ratified. The history is there and on multiple sources. I listed only one. There are many more, not all by the same person, not all of them wild-eyed radicals or persons with an axe to grind.

    If the process took place today it would be ratified in 3 days, because most states have their own income tax now and most base it in part on the federal. ergo, a failure to ratify today would be a huge financial blow to all levels of government. Ain’t gonna happen.

    but as it stands today and as recorded history it has never been legally ratified. Accept it.

  15. Why should I “accept it”? The argument is complete bogus. It has less support than “collective rights”. It’s all the same “evidence” that is presented over and over and is just as innacurrate each time it is presented. They may not be all as batsh*t crazy as Brown, but they all are grasping for straws or trying to scam people.

  16. Go read the ratifying legislation. I have. The states’ documents are readily available.

    Several states did NOT legally vote on the legislation. They voted on similar legislation, but, to ratify an amendment, EVERY state must vote on the SAME words. This didn’t happen.

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