Monday, March 2, 2009

Co-Dependency and The American Taxpayer

Americans, according to the IRS, are some of the most compliant people in the world when it comes to paying taxes. According to a 2008 Gallup survey sponsored by the IRS Oversight Board, "72 percent of citizens said they 'completely agree' that it is every American’s civic duty to pay their fair share of taxes, and 89 percent – the most ever – said it is “not at all” acceptable to cheat even a little. The most recent IRS review of compliance found that, in tax year 2001, an estimated 86 percent of taxes owed were collected." When it comes to taxes, more Americans than ever say, ‘Pay up’, The Christian Science Monitor

What an amazing finding. Americans, beaten, robbed, raped and lied to, still feel that it is their civic duty to pay for their fair share of the abuse, and that to cheat in funding that abuse would be totally unacceptable to their sense of fairness. If this doesn't sound like a dangerous co-dependency situation, I don't know what would.

To verify this diagnosis, let's see what Wikipedia has to say about co-dependency:

"The co-dependent is a person who perpetuates the alcohol or drug dependence of someone close to them in a way that hampers recovery. This can be done through direct control over the dependent or by making excuses for their dysfunctional behavior or relieving them of the consequences of the dependence. In an act called enabling, this can have negative social and health consequences for both parties."

If we just substitute the phrase "who perpetuates the alcohol or drug dependence" with "who pays taxes" I think we can be sure that we found the source of our national psychosis.

Today, this co-dependency has taken off to stratospheric heights as American's are making excuses for the massive debt spending that Obama and his Goldmen Sach's financial advisors are proposing. Today, they believe that America can spend itself to salvation, a sentiment that has long been contrarian to good-'ol fashioned economic conservation, and common sense.

Because of this willingness to enable and make excuses for bad government policy, we see the continuation of the spurious War on Terror and its destruction to Iraqi, Afghani, and American's psychological and physical well-being; the increasing militarization of the state based on the Great Lie of the century – 9/11 (which most Americans are loathe to contemplate); the rigging of the financial system leading to the inevitable bailout of the banks; and, the allowance of a preposterously high federal deficit, that if not forgiven through jubilee or the "odious debt" doctrine, will surely enslave ourselves and our children's children for perpetuity. Does paying for this sound sane to you?

Sanity, however, is a relative state of mind for those who can justify the follies and foibles of the failed state; they will call you irresponsible and crazy when you mention your intent to not pay taxes to finance these delusional fantasies and crimes. Alas, you will be labeled a bad citizen and blamed for the sorry condition of the state because of your unwillingness to pay to play. You are deemed a pariah to their ordered state of mind. Shame on you.

This indignation by the obedient taxpayer gets more pronounced when the crime of tax evasion is committed by the people who want to be their shepherds, people like Timothy Geithner, Tom Daschle, and Nancy Killefer – Obama's cabinet picks for Treasury Secretary, Health and Social Services Secretary and Office of Management and Budget. The taxpayer asks, "Why should the political elite get to play by a different set of rules than I? And, why are these powerful people only called out when they are running for office and it's politically expedient for them to do so." Life is unfair and they plead for the IRS to go after these fraudsters in a vain attempt restore their abiding sense of American propriety.

The problem is, the American state has never been about fairness, no matter how flowery or egalitarian the language of our founding documents. When Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence that "all men are created equal," he meant all white, land-owning men, not his hundreds of slaves, or his concubine, Sally Hemings.

Today the American people, like Sally Hemings, are captive to a system that takes from them their labor, their pride, and their freedom. However, that captivity has always been reinforced in their minds. When Hemings had a chance to escape her bondage and live as free person in France, she concluded that living the life as a pampered slave was better than having to fend for herself in a new land, with a new culture, and new system of government. Her conscious probably tugged at her some, but just like the taxpayer today, her co-dependency on her master's largesse, and society's acceptance of the flawed, unjust system, enabled the system to survive much longer than it should have.

Today, the flogging and the chains may be gone, but in essence the American people are still slaves. How can they call themselves anything but? They obediently send their kids off to kill and subdue other people in countries that they know nothing about; they willingly pay for the phosphorus and cluster bombs that burn and dismember Palestinian and Iraqi kids; they submit to their and their children's debt bondage by playing the rigging of the system deficit/credit game. The chains on their minds are still there.

Americans need serious help if they want to kick the codependency habit. They will need to cut the umbilical cord and learn to walk, talk, and think on their own if they are going to rid themselves of this destructive problem. Some of the things they must to to do so is get rid of the debt-interest-based financial system that is enslaving them. They need to demand a substantial cut in the military budget that now exceeds 50 percent of tax expenditures, and, most importantly, they have to demand a real independent 9/11 Truth commission to look into the crime of 9/11 (and prosecute those responsible). This is unarguably the most important issue of our time. This is the fulcrum issue of the War on Terror, which is still brought up by the politicos and pundits as the reason we are in Afghanistan and Iraq. We need to remind ourselves that Obama is still fighting this war based on this event. Without examining and holding accountable those involved we are never going to fix this dysfunctional state and our codependent nature.

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Art above by Sudden Impact Studios

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent. That's why everyone is speechless. They are embarrassed at how they must look to the rest of the world.

Anonymous said...

Our taxes are already withheld so there is no choice. In other countries there may not be any withholding. Without compulsory withholding we may not be as compliant as the poll suggest.

Kelly Thomas said...

Great post. I was in the middle of writing something similar, but I think I will just link to your post instead!

Anonymous said...

Very good article, and sadly very true. My problem is the same as many Americans face right now in regards to taxes. I recognize the chains of taxation wrapped all around me and want to escape but honestly don't know how. Do I go to my employer and tell them I am going tax exempt since they won't let me work 'under the table'? Or perhaps I continue to file but deduct every penny I spend during the year, since every penny spend is work related (I eat AND sleep EXCLUSIVLEY to maintain my health for work after all).

Many are willing to stand and peacefully fight if we knew we weren't alone and had a realistic plan.

Anonymous said...

Yes, compulsory withholding by companies is one way the IRS gets their money, however, you can put the maximum amount of exemptions to get around this and then not pay when they send you a notice.

My advice is to send a protest letter to them. Let them know that you think paying them is illegal. Send it as well to your congressperson to voice your protest over how taxes are being used. I wrote an essay on why I think it is illegal to pay, and I think it is as valid an argument. See Tax Resistance - The Moral and Legal Defense

Quite frankly, the IRS can be quite intimidating, and the tax courts have given them a right to put liens on your accounts and seize your assets. Tax protesting is never easy. Here's advice from Susan Quinlan, a Bay Area organizer for the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee:

Screw the IRS: A Step-By-Step Primer

Tax resistance begins by controlling your income. This means one of two things -- getting paid under the table or, for most of us, managing your income withholding. Strictly speaking, the allowances you claim on your W-4 form are used to increase the amount of money you can take home to care for dependents, or can be used to offset some refund you know you'll be getting come tax time. Because you don't have to identify your dependents on your W-4, and your employer can't ask you about the reasons behind your allowances, tax resisters can use these allowances to decrease the taxes they're paying."

War Tax Resistance Made Simple

http://www.alternet.org/story/15593

muebles torrejon de ardoz said...

It can't work as a matter of fact, that is what I consider.