Ron Paul Says Taxation Is ‘Immoral’ And ‘Theft’ (VIDEO)

On Sunday morning during an appearance on Meet The Press, Ron Paul told host David Gregory that he believes “taxation is immoral” and that it is “theft.” Under a President Paul, the tax code as we know it would be abolished along with the 16th Amendment and replaced with all sorts of taxes such as highway taxes, gas taxes, and user fees. Here’s the transcript:

MR. GREGORY:  Let me, let me ask you about the role of government.  You’ve said about taxation, in a way that doesn’t minces (sic) words, the following: “Taxation is immoral,” you told the Libertarian Party News.  Would you scrap the tax code altogether?

REP. PAUL:  That would be a pretty good idea, a pretty good start.  I, I can qualify it if I’m allowed.  Taxation is theft when you take money from one group to give it to, to another, when you, when you transfer the wealth.  Now, taxation could be accomplished with user fees and, you know, highway fees and gasoline taxes and import taxes. But the income tax is based on the assumption that the government owns you, owns all of your income and provides the conditions on which they allow you to keep a certain percentage.  That, to me, is immoral, and the founders didn’t like it.  That’s why the Constitution had to be amended in 1913.

Here’s the video:

Basically, Ron Paul wants to take America back to the days prior to 1913 when the United States government had trouble raising funds and the financial system was unorganized. Paul is being a little shifty too when he talks about what the Founding Fathers believed. It’s true that the Founders weren’t crazy about direct taxes, but those same Founders gave Congress the power to tax and gave the American people the power to change the Constitution as they saw fit. Before 1913, financial recessions were common and the government had no power to do anything about it. The government often didn’t have the funding to do anything at all. It couldn’t provide for the general welfare or the common defense. Taxes were notoriously difficult to administer because they had to be apportioned or divided amongst the states based on the census. So something had to be done. The answer was the 16th amendment.

The income tax has an interesting history. During the Civil War, Republican President Abraham Lincoln passed an income tax in 1861 and a graduated income tax in 1862. During the years between the Civil War and 1909, both political parties proposed passing an income tax. It was one thing both parties could agree on. In 1909, the ball really began to roll. Republican President William Howard Taft proposed an income tax on corporations. In Congress, an income tax amendment to the Constitution was first proposed by Republican Senator Norris Brown of Nebraska. He submitted two proposals. The amendment proposal finally accepted was Senate Joint Resolution No. 40, introduced by Republican Senator Nelson W. Aldrich of Rhode Island, the Senate majority leader and Finance Committee Chairman.

The 61st Congress in 1909 had a decidedly Republican majority. Republicans controlled both houses with 60 seats in the Senate, and 219 in the House and they promptly used that majority with the help of many Democrats to pass the resolution proposing the 16th Amendment and promptly sent it to the states for ratification.

We all know that the amendment succeeded. But which states approved of it the most? Surprisingly, the South and West strongly approved while the Northeast did not. You read that right. The current Republican stronghold was the region that supported the income tax the most, even Paul’s home state of Texas. In fact, Texas was one of the first ten states to ratify the amendment. Here is the list of the 36 required states (out of 48) that ratified the amendment.

1. Alabama (August 10, 1909)
2. Kentucky (February 8, 1910)
3. South Carolina (February 19, 1910)
4. Illinois (March 1, 1910)
5. Mississippi (March 7, 1910)
6. Oklahoma (March 10, 1910)
7. Maryland (April 8, 1910)
8. Georgia (August 3, 1910)
9. Texas (August 16, 1910)
10. Ohio (January 19, 1911)
11. Idaho (January 20, 1911)
12. Oregon (January 23, 1911)
13. Washington (January 26, 1911)
14. Montana (January 27, 1911)
15. Indiana (January 30, 1911)
16. California (January 31, 1911)
17. Nevada (January 31, 1911)
18. South Dakota (February 1, 1911)
19. Nebraska (February 9, 1911)
20. North Carolina (February 11, 1911)
21. Colorado (February 15, 1911)
22. North Dakota (February 17, 1911)
23. Michigan (February 23, 1911)
24. Iowa (February 24, 1911)
25. Kansas (March 2, 1911)
26. Missouri (March 16, 1911)
27. Maine (March 31, 1911)
28. Tennessee (April 7, 1911)
29. Arkansas (April 22, 1911), after having previously rejected the amendment
30. Wisconsin (May 16, 1911)
31. New York (July 12, 1911)
32. Arizona (April 3, 1912)
33. Minnesota (June 11, 1912)
34. Louisiana (June 28, 1912)
35. West Virginia (January 31, 1913)
36. Delaware (February 3, 1913)

Most of the other states ratified the amendment shortly thereafter. Passing an amendment is no small feat. It takes a nation to do it. What Ron Paul wants to do is reverse a decision made by the entire nation. This isn’t just some minor law that he wants to get rid of. It’s obvious why the Republicans target the 16th Amendment these days. They simply do not know American history. Republicans think that since the 16th Amendment was ratified during Woodrow Wilson’s Presidency in 1913, that the amendment must be something a liberal came up with, therefore it must be destroyed. It’s not quite that easy. The fact is, Republicans controlled the White House in 1909 when Congress passed the amendment resolution. After that, it was in the hands of the states. Even if Wilson had lost the election in 1912, the 16th Amendment would have passed anyway. Plus, all three presidential candidates in 1912 supported the income tax, as did a great majority of Americans, even conservative Americans.

Abolishing the 16th Amendment is just Paul’s way of abolishing corporate tax rates and lowering taxes on the wealthy to nearly nothing. This would be one sure-fire way to make a zero percent tax rate permanent for Corporate America. The current tax code would work just fine if we were to actually close loopholes and raise top rates. The income tax is not theft nor is it immoral. Funding the government so that it can adequately care for the people is not wrong on any level. Our government and the American people knew that in 1909. Ron Paul is just a corporate shill fighting for an extreme agenda that seeks to destroy everything about America. And we would be stupid to elect him or any other Republican to any high office.

Edited by Wendy Gittleson