April 20, 2016
I’ll start with a confession.
Based on the returns I’ve just prepared for 2015, my tax bill for the year amounts to exactly $0.00.
In fact, for the second year in a row, I legitimately owe zero tax. And I’m damn proud of that.
(And no, it’s not from any illegal tricks. I’ll explain how I did it later.)
Not a shred of my efforts goes to help finance bombs, wars, debt, and utterly useless waste.
April is the month where hundreds of millions of people all over the world, including the United States and Canada, file their annual tax returns.
And it raises an important question: what are you really paying for?
Occasionally I hear from friends in very high-tax places (like Norway) who tell me that they enjoy paying taxes, or at least, that they don’t mind very much.
And this may be true in a few countries where people feel like they’re receiving benefits like healthcare, education, a well-funded pension, etc.
But what tangible benefits do you receive in exchange for your federal tax dollars in the Land of the Free?
You pay for a hopelessly unfunded Social Security program that’s tantamount to a Ponzi scheme.
Even by the government’s own numbers, Social Security has no chance of existing, at least in its present form, by the time most taxpayers reach the age of eligibility.
So you’ll pay for your entire working life into a program that won’t be there for you. I’d hardly call this a benefit.
Aside from bankrupt entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare, taxpayers also fund plenty of bombs and war.
Military spending is the next biggest line item in the US federal budget at roughly $600 billion, though it often balloons far beyond that figure through clever accounting tricks.
If you’re ready to jump to the conclusion that being a major superpower requires a massive military budget, I won’t bother arguing.
But I hope we can agree that it makes sense to spend funds wisely.
As it turns out, this isn’t happening. In 2013 the US Defense Department got caught blatantly cooking the books in order to conceal epic levels of fraud, waste, and incompetence to the tune of trillions of dollars.
This absurd level of waste is very much the case across all of government, whether it was the infamous $2 billion spent on the Obamacare website, or the $856,000 spent to train mountain lions to run on treadmills, or the $1 billion the military spent to destroy $16 billion worth of perfectly good ammunition.
After military spending, the next budget item is INTEREST on the DEBT.
According to the Treasury Department’s Bureau of Public Debt, last year the government spent over $400 billion on interest!
Again, this is hardly a benefit.
Of course, people always point to things like roads and think this is somehow a benefit of paying taxes.
Maybe so. But the Highway Trust Fund that is supposed to build and maintain the roads is flat broke, due to be insolvent in less than 60 days.
So much for the roads.
It’s also easy for some people to think that, if we all pitched in a bit more and paid more tax, these huge fiscal imbalances would be eliminated.
What total nonsense. The institution of government has an uninterrupted track record of wasting taxpayer funds.
If everyone paid more tax, they’d simply find creative ways to waste more money.
Just look at the data: nearly every year the government’s tax revenue goes UP. And yet, so does federal spending!
If you look at the big picture, it’s clear that, at best, you are writing a check that goes into a fiscal black hole.
More realistically, your funds are being squandered on waste and war. It’s pathetic.
And this problem isn’t resolved by having everyone pay more.
If you really want to do something about it, the best method is to starve the beast.
And that’s a big part of being a Sovereign Man: taking legal steps to legitimately reduce what you owe.
Note: this has nothing to do with the ‘Sovereign Citizen’ movement that advocates not paying tax by simply ceasing to file a tax return.
Even if you feel legally and morally right about not filing a tax return, never forget that taxes in the Land of the Free are collected at the point of a gun.
So if you don’t file, you could easily wind up wearing a Day-Glo orange jumpsuit in a Federal Prison Camp. It’s not worth it.
There are dozens if not hundreds of perfectly legitimate ways to reduce what you owe.
For example, anyone can set up and maximize retirement contributions to an IRA or 401(k), thus reducing what you owe in taxes.
In my case, because I live abroad, the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion and Foreign Housing Exclusion have helped reduce my own tax bill down to zero.
The best part is that I get to choose how to spend my own money.
Last year I used my tax savings to help a wounded veteran who had been abandoned by the federal government.
He lost his leg on patrol in Afghanistan, but the government wouldn’t pay for the experimental surgery he needed to start walking again. I was able to help.
I’m already looking for the next person I can help with this year’s tax savings.
The standard narrative we are told by the government and their lapdog media is that tax avoidance is something that self-centered rich assholes do so that they can buy more Ferraris.
This is complete propaganda.
Taking legal steps to reduce what you owe is all about ensuring that your labor goes to the causes that YOU believe in, rather than funding spy agencies and bombing raids on children’s hospitals.
This sense of independence is what being a Sovereign Man is all about.