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Is taxation theft?

Debate Information

No.

Governments have a legal process for collecting taxes. It isn’t criminal and therefore is not theft.

The counter to this may be that people reject the authority of the state and any moral basis for collecting taxes.

However it is the authority of the state that also defines what is legal. If government are not a valid authority then there is no legal basis for decrying anything as theft as there is no authority to declare anything as legal or illegal.

Either way the real argument of “Taxation = theft” really amounts to “I don’t like taxes”, to which the rebuttal is “Yeah, I don’t care what you like or dislike”.
Plaffelvohfen



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  • @Ampersand
    Governments have a legal process for collecting taxes. It isn’t criminal and therefore is not theft. This is a lie. Those who govern have a legal burden to ensure a more perfect union with justice to assure that taxations do not become theft or punishment without representation in a court of law.

    Either way the real argument of “Taxation = theft” really amounts to “I don’t like taxes”, to which the rebuttal is “Yeah, I don’t care what you like or dislike”. Again, a lie. The argument of taxation is made by representation and negligence. These are United States of law and are found in all people under conditions set by themselves not others.

    Is taxation theft? 
    Possibly... The accusation can only be addressed by scrutinizing the state of the union made by taxation and those who raise the need for taxation. We have all seen tax's that are theft. We have all seen tax's which are not theft.

  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 4589 Pts   -  
    Something being legal according to the particular version of the law does not exclude it from being an offense. A law endorsing slavery would not magically reclassify "slavery" into "employment". A law allowing the ethic majority to slaughter ethnic minorities with no legal consequences would not change the fact that the act of this slaughter constitutes a murder.

    Taxation is not theft, but it is robbery. It is one person, in essence, putting a gun to another person's head and saying, "Give me a tribute, or go to jail. Go to jail without resistance, or die". The fact that the person acts on behalf of an organization calling itself "government" does not change anything. A person acting on behalf of their mafia organization while extorting money from other people is still committing an act of robbery.

    What I like or dislike does not affect what something is and is not. I do not like taxes, but I do not like many things that I believe should be legal. Taxation should not be legal, and it is a violation of fundamental human rights, just as slavery, murder or political persecution is.
    anarchist100Plaffelvohfen
  • AmpersandAmpersand 820 Pts   -  
    @MayCaesar


    Something being legal according to the particular version of the law does not exclude it from being an offense. A law endorsing slavery would not magically reclassify "slavery" into "employment".

    Agreed. I think Roman slavery is offensive because it was immoral as all slavery is immoral, but the thing is I don’t pretend that it was illegal because it was perfectly legal at the time. The issue is that many people will, as you go on to do just slightly later in your post, conflate “I don’t like something” with “This is a crime”.

    I don’t know why this happens but I would assume it’s that “I don’t want to pay taxes” comes across as somewhat petulant so people try and make out that there’s a bigger issue at play, that it’s in fact criminal. The problem there is people pay taxes daily and we know it’s not criminal.

    A law allowing the ethic majority to slaughter ethnic minorities with no legal.  consequences would not change the fact that the act of this slaughter constitutes a murder.

    By definition it would. There have been countless times in history that people have been killed in an immoral fashion. The issue people have with them is that it’s inhumane and immoral, not that the killers didn’t lobby to get the necessary legal framework changed beforehand to legalise their killing.

    Murder is specifically “the unlawful premeditated killing of one human being by another”. If historically it was legal to kill certain people then that wasn’t murder, that doesn’t change how immoral and wrong it was as the arguments against such killings aren’t rooted in “Is this legal y/n”, but rather the moral argument of whether it is ever right to treat fellow human beings like that. Do you think slavery abolitionists thought slavery was illegal? Or was the entire point that they knew it was legal and they wanted to stop it because it was immoral regardless?

    With taxation there’s really no moral outrage for most people, hence the taxation=theft argument which is simply a hyperbolic lie to try and make up for the lack of any real argument behind it.

    Taxation is not theft, but it is robbery.

    Semantic argument over whether to use theft or robbery and again completely incorrect as robbery refers to an illegal action which taxation is not.

    It is one person, in essence, putting a gun to another person's head and saying, "Give me a tribute, or go to jail. Go to jail without resistance, or die".

    What you are describing in overblown terms is the state monopoly on violence. If you reject the state monopoly on violence that’s fine, but the thing is you probably actually don’t.

    Let me check:

    Do you object to the idea that the state can make laws against murder, rape, etc and punish people for breaking these laws? 

    If so then you are consistent and can make this argument, but I think pretty much everyone on earth will disagree with you because we want the state to have the power to enforce laws and conventions.

    If not then as you don't actually object to the state acting like this, just about them doing so with taxes, so what this again boils down to is you not liking taxes and trying to make out like there's some fundamental issue at play (the state using violence to coerce people to act in certain ways) when actually that's not the issue at all. The problem again there is that the answer to "I don't like taxes" is "Suck it up" and you don't like that.

    The fact that the person acts on behalf of an organization calling itself "government" does not change anything. A person acting on behalf of their mafia organization while extorting money from other people is still committing an act of robbery.

    Actually bey very very basic logic, someone doing something that is legal makes it by definition legal. You might not like that it is legal, you may wish that it wasn't legal and you may oppose it regardless of it being legal but pretending it's not legal jut make your argument appear ridiculous. It isn't robbery. It's not theft. It's just something you don't like.

    What I like or dislike does not affect what something is and is not. I do not like taxes, but I do not like many things that I believe should be legal. 

    Exactly! So stop claiming it's robbery or theft when it's just something you dislike.

    Also a big flaw in your argument is that you don't actually have any property. What's that, you say? Your house and furniture and clothes and objects are your property. Oh, sorry about the confusion, those are mine. I've decided they're mine and me and my buddies are going to come and take them. Oh, what's that, you don't like that What a shame! If only the state had a monopoly on force and could set down laws about how and why people in society act towards each other and our legal rights and obligation! Unfortunately you've rejected them and you can't pick and choose.

    I of course don't believe the above, but it highlights the contradictions in your argument. You invoke the authority of the government when it suits you, but reject it when it doesn't suit you. Unfortunately that's logically inconsistent and it is a binary situation. The government is either an authority or it is not. It can't exist in a state of quantum flux where it's only authoritative when it suits you.

     Taxation should not be legal, and it is a violation of fundamental human rights, just as slavery, murder or political persecution is.

    Slavery is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 4: "No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms."

    Murder is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 3: "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person."

    Political persecution is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 2: "Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status" with other articles potentially being relevant depending n the nature of the persecution.

    Taxation is not a violation of fundamental human rights. The closest that the UDHR comes is article 17 which states is: "No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property." Of course, that means that consistent and clear rationales for deprivation of property are not violations of human rights.

    Again, this is a case of you trying to make something extreme when it's very basic and ordinary. It's not like something has to be a human rights violation to be illegal. Countries can outlaw or legalise smoking for instance. It's not to do with human rights, it's just what those countries decide is legal.

    Just be open and honest and say "Taxes are perfectly legal but I don't like them".



    PlaffelvohfenOakTownA
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 4589 Pts   -   edited June 20
    @Ampersand

    I do not pretend that taxation is illegal either; it is legal in all current legal systems. It is still an offense, however, and a violation of fundamental human rights.

    If your definition of "murder" is "an act of killing that is illegal in a given system of law", then yes, a law allowing the ethnic majority to slaughter ethnic minority would not permit murder. Only then the concept loses its meaning, as it literally becomes whatever one declares it to be. This is not how human language works, however; words have meanings.
    The fact that most people are okay with certain laws changes absolutely nothing with respect to the moral evaluation of those laws, let alone the definition of terms. Taxation is not theft, but it is robbery, and even if 100% of humans approve of taxation, it will still remain robbery by definition.

    "Theft" and "robbery" are very different concepts irrespective of what is legal and what is not. "Theft" implies a certain covertness of the action in question; a police officer quietly taking your wallet out of your pocket without you noticing would be an act of theft. Taxation does not work this way, and the government is very open about collecting people's property - and threatening them with violence if they do not comply with the collectors' demands. There is some indirect covertness to it, as the way certain taxes are structured makes it very difficult for the common people to realize that they are even paying them (corporate tax or tariffs are like that) - but, again, the government is very open about existence of this taxes, if not about their exact consequences.

    I reject monopoly of anyone on anything that is not their property. Which is why I think state a mafia organization and do not consider it morally legitimate in principle. That said, there are certainly gradations of the tyranny of state, and I am much more okay with existence of some states than other states. My moral evaluation and classification of a state as an institution does not change, however.
    Provided a state does exist, it can function in different ways, just like any mafia organization can. Some mafia organizations mostly tend to their own business, and they provide certain services to the people living in areas controlled by them - those are analogous to more benevolent governments. Other organizations go on killing sprees and tyrannize everyone on the lands run by them - those are analogous to more authoritarian states.
    All that said, a monopoly on violence is not the end of the world in itself. How this monopoly is used can be. Just as a Medieval king pillaging his subjects relentlessly was highly undesirable, so is modern state pillaging its subjects relentlessly.

    Something can only be legal or illegal according to a specific system of law. I am not interested in debating what is legal or illegal according to any particular system of law; I am interesting in debating what should and should not be legal in a proper system of law.

    It is not "just something I dislike". I dislike many things, as I said, that I think should be legal. Taxation should not, and it is robbery by definition as I see it, regardless of whether it is outlawed in any particular system of justice or not. The government is the robber here, and the robber does not get to say, "I reject your definition of a robber, so I am not a robber".
    As for what constitutes property, who decides it and how, that is a completely different discussion entirely. It can be decided through the government, but, again, I am not interested in the technical details of how it is decided in the current systems. Just like with other related terms, property rights can be violated, and the government, or my neighbor, or someone else may steal my property - even if the act of stealing is covered up by law.
    What suits me personally has nothing to do with my reasoning. What would suit me personally best is if I was able to take whatever I want whenever I want, and no one could ever take anything that I claim to be mine. I do not advocate for such a system. And I have not invoked the authority of the government anywhere in my argument; I am very consistent in my opposition to the institution. If the government does exist, then there are certain things that it should do and certain things that it should not, and only in that context do I acknowledge its authority - but it is conditional on the assumption that the government should exist in the first place, which I do not hold.

    UDHR is not an ultimate say on what is a human right and what is not; it is just a political document professing certain views. You also fail to see the contradictions in your argument when referencing its articles. For example, article 3, which says "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.", when interpreted literally, means that any act of killing is illegal, hence a murder. But you earlier said that a law allowing the ethnic majority to slaughter ethnic minorities would not permit murder, because it would make the related act of killing not a murder. Which one is it? This is not the only contradiction in your arguments, but this is the most glaring one.

    Yes, "taxes are perfectly legal [in any of the existing systems], but I do not like them". This is not an incorrect statement.
    PlaffelvohfenJohn_C_87
  • @Ampersand
    Agreed. I think Roman slavery is offensive because it was immoral as all slavery is immoral, but the thing is I don’t pretend that it was illegal because it was perfectly legal at the time. The issue is that many people will, as you go on to do just slightly later in your post, conflate “I don’t like something” with “This is a crime”.

    Slavery was unconstitutional, slavery is not illegal and is still in use by American Congress in America. No one simply calls it out and by fact some minority groups may deny or not know it even still exists. The difference is Congress enslaves all Americans along with other citizens of nations they are not a military undertaking an offsetting to cost of war slavery to congress is an additional punishment to crime upon conviction. Which is of great concern when legislators believe law is absolute and not a second Amendment arm raided to bear against the people as a weapon.         

    Just be open and honest and say "Taxes are perfectly legal but I don't like them".

    That is not honest. Taxes are only legal when held in a proper state of the union with justice by those who collect them.

    Do you object to the idea that the state can make laws against murder, rape, etc and punish people for breaking these laws? 

    It is degrees of murder not just murder while a woman is not raped it is truthfully something legally different, she has been a victim of a sexual assault as attempted murder not rape. There are many laws which have significant imperfect states of the union with established justice

    Slavery is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 4: "No one shall be held in slavery or servitude; slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms.

    Slavery was a violation of a Consitutional right and never contained to believe as human right has done anthing better is B.S. Slavery is an internation human right left unproven by international courts as they are unable to prove slavery in a court with any consistancy to deture it use.

    Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slavery, which reads: “‘Slavery’
    means, as defined in the Slavery Convention of 1926, the status or condition of a person
    over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised, and
    ‘slave’ means a person in such condition or status.”7 Further, under the Rome Statute,
    “enslavement” is deemed a crime against humanity under Article 7(1)(c), and defined at
    Article 7(2)(c) as: “the exercise of any or all of the powers attaching to the right of
    ownership over a person and includes the exercise of such power in the course of
    trafficking in persons, in particular women and children.”8 What remains common to each
    of these definitions is the phrase: “the powers attaching to the right of ownership.” The
    notion of ownership thus appears to be the sine qua non of slavery in international law – yet
    this is not an accurate reading of that phrase.

    (PDF) The Definition of Slavery in International Law (researchgate.net)

    sine qua non : something absolutely indispensable or essential
    Sine qua non Definition & Meaning - Merriam-Webster

    Murder is a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 3: "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person."
    Again, the state of the union made by Human rights using the word murder is a fallacy as all that must occur is that a murder be cescribed by law as a accident. 

     “the powers attaching to the right of ownership.” 

    This is a negligent state of the union made with established justice not all things owned are always abused at a physical mor mental level. It is not that slavery can be criminalized at all, it is the treatment of slave which can be held in a united state of law and the law is enforceable by explanation and proof. There must be a truth that can be held as a self-evident truth in order to create a connection to established justice. Without it you have what the world has done with slavery B.S. their way through politics and established injustice.


  • AmpersandAmpersand 820 Pts   -  
    @MayCaesar

    I do not pretend that taxation is illegal either; it is legal in all current legal systems.

    Yet you refer to it as robbery and the state as the mafia for instituting it. Those are both descriptions of illegal activity. Taxation is not illegal therefore your descriptions are accurate and at best simply misleading attempts to pad an argument and at worst outright lying.

    It is still an offense, however, and a violation of fundamental human rights.

    Show me the internationally agreed bill of human rights that states taxation is a violation of human rights. You can't, it doesn't exist. It isn't an offence or a violation of fundamental human rights. Once again what you mean is "I don't like taxes" and you're making absurd hyperbolic claims about "fundamental human rights" because there's no real argument to your position and you think highlighting. 

    If your definition of "murder" is "an act of killing that is illegal in a given system of law", then yes, a law allowing the ethnic majority to slaughter ethnic minority would not permit murder. Only then the concept loses its meaning, as it literally becomes whatever one declares it to be. This is not how human language works, however; words have meanings.

    That's not my definition, it's THE definition:

    https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/murder -  The crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murder - Murder is the unlawful killing of another human without justification or valid excuse, especially the unlawful killing of another human with malice aforethought.

    https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/murder - The crime of intentionally killing a person.

    All definitions of murder include the fact that it needs to be an unlawful/criminal act. Killing someone in a legal manner is not murder. It could be tragic. It could be horrific. It could be a travesty that is morally on par with murder, but it is not murder. I can easily condemn horrific acts of slaughter that are not murder because it's not whether they are unlawful or not that matters to be when I do so. In fact if they're lawful that's worse in a way because it shows a systematic problem with people being killed!

    On the other hand because taxation is so ordinary and boring, you falsely state that it is robbery and done by a 'mafia' because you want to encourage false outrage even though you are making false claims to do so.

    All definitions of robbery, theft, etc specify that it specifically only refers to illegal actions.

    I reject monopoly of anyone on anything that is not their property.

    You're dodging the question. Do you approve of the state monopoly of violence being applied to stop people committing murder, rape etc and punishing people who do commit these acts? If not then the core of your argument here isn't applicable because you're happy with the big mean state wielding all this terrifying power, but only when it suits you.

    Something can only be legal or illegal according to a specific system of law. I am not interested in debating what is legal or illegal according to any particular system of law; I am interesting in debating what should and should not be legal in a proper system of law.

    Then stop making illegality the core piece of your argument and claiming taxation is robbery and any government who uses it is the mafia. It's not theft. It's not robbery. The government isn't the mafia. You just don't like paying taxes.

    It is not "just something I dislike". I dislike many things, as I said, that I think should be legal. Taxation should not, and it is robbery by definition as I see it, regardless of whether it is outlawed in any particular system of justice or not. The government is the robber here, and the robber does not get to say, "I reject your definition of a robber, so I am not a robber".

    The 'As I see it' in 'robbery by definition as I see it' is doing a lot of heavy lifting here because by all the actual definitions whether an action out outlawed is what defines something as robbery.

    The definition of robbery requires on it being illegal. Taking something you are legally owed is not robbery.  

    Also very very poor circular reasoning here as you're essentially saying: "The government are robbers"  - > "Robbers don't get to decide the law" -> "As the government are robbers the law doesn't count" -> "Therefore the government are robbers" -> Repeat. You're starting from the premise that you're meant to be trying to prove and just going round in a circle. 

    By your logic pretty much anyone taking anything ever can be robbery as long as someone doesn't like it. It makes a mockery of the English language, all because you can't argue your position on it's actual merits.

    And I have not invoked the authority of the government anywhere in my argument; I am very consistent in my opposition to the institution. If the government does exist, then there are certain things that it should do and certain things that it should not, and only in that context do I acknowledge its authority - but it is conditional on the assumption that the government should exist in the first place, which I do not hold.

    Au contraire, you have stated that you have property. There is no magical series of natural laws which grants you that property. In another place and another time you may have been a indebted servant who was only leasing your property on your feudal lord's estate in return for your service.

    The protections you and your property receive are only enforced and recognised due to the state you are trying to ignore. You are simultaneously trying to enjoy the benefits of the state's authority while simultaneously rejecting it when it suits you.

    UDHR is not an ultimate say on what is a human right and what is not; it is just a political document professing certain views. You also fail to see the contradictions in your argument when referencing its articles. For example, article 3, which says "Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.", when interpreted literally, means that any act of killing is illegal, hence a murder. But you earlier said that a law allowing the ethnic majority to slaughter ethnic minorities would not permit murder, because it would make the related act of killing not a murder. Which one is it? This is not the only contradiction in your arguments, but this is the most glaring one.

    I'll agree that the UDHR is not necessarily the be all and end all of human rights, but it is an internationally agreed document that has become a foundational aspect of international law with recognised standing and a real impact on people's lives. Your definition of human rights seems to be "Whatever I, a random internet poster, feels is important". I trust you can see why I and society as a whole recognise the former and not the latter?

    If you want to present a moral rationale for why people should care if you have you pay tax to the extent that it should actually be a human right then feel free, but simply saying that something is a human right doesn't make it a human right.

    Also Act 3 of the UDHR does not mean that any act of killing is illegal, simply that it is illegal without a good reason that impacts fundamental rights. Different rights can often come into conflict, e.g. when a criminal is found guilty of a crime you have to balance their right to liberty versus the right to security of the people that they threaten or damage with your crimes. This is how despite a universal right to liberty people can be imprisoned. The most common example of killings being legal is warfare and self-defence.

    Also modern international law is why I specifically talked about the past tense of "There have been countless times in history" to refer to crimes that have been committed historically. Laws aren't retroactive so Genghis Khan isn't going to be posthumously found guilty of genocide, etc. If a state passed a law saying that killing x ethnic/religious group/social group is fine then although this would be legal at a state level it would be illegal at a international level. We're still talking about something being illegal due to laws, just a different level of laws, so I don't really soo how it impacts your argument in anyway.
    John_C_87
  • @Ampersand
    I do not pretend that taxation is illegal either; it is legal in all current legal systems.
    Taxation is legal in all current legal systems it is not otherwise tax lawers would all be out of work....
  • Show me the internationally agreed bill of human rights that states taxation is a violation of human rights.

    A Human Right has no direct verbal connection by its definition to law unlike Constitutional Right a use of lethal force is a basic Human Right along with other crimes. Almost all human crimes are in some way a basic a human right that statement is so misdirected it is almost tragic.


  • If you want to present a moral rationale for why people should care if you have you pay tax to the extent that it should actually be a human right then feel free, but simply saying that something is a human right doesn't make it a human right.

    By the same sense saying something is lawful does not mean it was proven as lawful. The issue is a human right does not meet a minimum of describing a state as lawful it is not bound by legal precedent only human interpretation.

  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 4589 Pts   -  
    @Ampersand

    Once again, what is "legal" depends on the particular legal system, and there is no objective standard by which one can choose which of the myriad of systems out there is to be chosen. "Crime" is a different concept; "crimes against humanity", for instance, can be legalized in certain systems. If you do not like these terms, then replace them with "illegitimate action", "offense", "violation"... Whatever you want to call it, you understand what I mean by these words.
    Your argument seems to be centered around the presumption that the government is the ultimate authority on what is legal and what is not. I do not accept this presumption. For that matter, if this presumption is taken to its logical end, then you will have to conclude that none of the current governments is legitimate; for instance, the US government is not legitimate, because it overtook the British government on its territory, which is the ultimate authority - but that government, in turn, had overtaken the one preceding it, and so on. The only way to make this work in your philosophical framework is to allow the legitimacy to shift from one government to another based on some other factors, and if those factors can be disputed (and they can), then, again, the concept of legitimacy is up to individual subjective interpretation.

    "Fundamental human rights" are exactly fundamental because they do not depend on any documents. Governments can agree on something and sign some treaties; but just as they cannot proclaim that 2+2=5 and make it true, they cannot proclaim that taxation is not a violation of fundamental human rights and make it true.
    What those fundamental human rights are, where they come from and why they are not just what I want them to be, is a separate philosophical discussion.

    I am not sure what you mean by taxation being "ordinary and boring". To me, it certainly is not. I view the government taxing me same way as you view (I presume) someone breaking into your home and taking away your stuff. As far as moral classification goes, Yakuza and the Japanese government fall under the same category in my eyes: mafia. The difference between mafia and an odd criminal is that the former is organized and claims some legitimacy, while the latter acts on their own volition without any agreements with others.

    You are drawing a false dichotomy here. No, in the absolute sense, I am do not approve of the state monopoly on violence being used to prevent murder, et cetera. In the relative sense, if it has this monopoly on violence, then it using it to prevent murder, theft and otherwise protect human rights is among the least offensive ways to use it, so I approve of it in the sense that it could be much worse. It is kind of like a guy who beats his wife every day: if he stops doing that and merely yells at her every day, but does not employ physical violence, then I approve of it compared to the alternative - but I still resent the guy.
    And again, it has nothing to do with what suits me personally. You would do well to stop prescribing views to me which I directly denounce; it is not a proper debating strategy.

    I am not making "illegality" the core of my argument; you are confused here. You started claiming that I was talking about legality a while ago, which I never was.

    No, the government is a robber by definition of robbery. This "circular argument" is something you just made up; I never made it.

    What is property and what is not is not determined by the government. The government can make subjective claims about it, but it cannot decide what 2+2 equals to. My attributions to "property" do not involve the governmental authority at all, and in every country that I know there is property that the government does not recognize as such.
    And you are right, property protections are largely enforced by the state. It does not mean that they have to be enforced by the state; the fact that they are is unfortunate. Yet, again, as I said earlier, if the government is to exist at all, then protecting fundamental human rights (property rights being their subset) is among its primary duties. Do I enjoy the "benefits" of this? I fail to see how there are benefits here, when private institutions left alone would defend my property rights much better than the government ever could.
    Your argument is typical for socialistic-minded people. They will say, "Hey, you are getting subsidized healthcare by the government! How does it feel, to be so hypocritical?" - not hearing that, first, I have never asked for these subsidies, and second, that these subsidies came as part of a package deal which hurts me far more than benefits me. Do you think that I should give up all the "benefits", while still incurring all the costs? Now, if your precious government gave me a choice to opt out of the system, that is to both lose the "benefits" and the responsibilities - and also allowed for the market to provide me with the services that I want in circumvention of the government - then I would take the deal momentarily. But no, first these authoritarians issue millions laws that make me barely able to move, then give me some "benefits" and say, "Bow to us for our generosity!" No, my friend, just no.

    Nothing is "internationally agreed" upon, as long as there is a single person in the world disagreeing with it. As for my definition of human rights, it stems from more than just my personal preference, and it would require a deep philosophical discussion to explore it thoroughly. There is no philosophy in politics though; there is just a gun.
    I do not see anything in Act 3 mentioning "good reason". And if rights can come into conflict (they clearly cannot, otherwise they are not "rights", but I will let it slide), then the ways to resolve the conflict must be prescribed, just as in all legitimate private contracts it is always stated what happens if one of the sides violates the contract.
    And once again, my argument is not about legality of things. It is about the nature of things. "Legality" is very subjective and depends on a particular legal framework; "nature" of things is objective. If I drop an apple, it falls down; you can come up with many interpretations of what is happening, which would be a scientific framework - but, in the end, the apple falls down, and that is a fundamental fact that is completely independent of the framework.
    PlaffelvohfenJohn_C_87
  • AmpersandAmpersand 820 Pts   -  
    @MayCaesar

    Once again, what is "legal" depends on the particular legal system, and there is no objective standard by which one can choose which of the myriad of systems out there is to be chosen.

    Ridiculous. If a crime is committed in New York then it uses the New York legal system (assuming a state crime) not the German legal system or the Tongan legal system or the 9th century Byzantine legal system. 

    "Crime" is a different concept; "crimes against humanity", for instance, can be legalized in certain systems. If you do not like these terms, then replace them with "illegitimate action", "offense", "violation"... Whatever you want to call it, you understand what I mean by these words.

    Crimes against humanity is not a codified list of crimes. Also if crimes against humanity not crimes then they’re not crimes against humanity in the first place.

    I would however point out that in just the same way that people can’t opt out of laws so that they don’t apply to them, countries can’t opt out of the international laws which restrict war crimes and other horrendous state-led crimes so despite your being very vague, no, countries can’t legalise crimes against humanity.

    Even if you were right, it would then make sense to call things crime when they are crimes and not call them crimes when they are not, e.g. drinking a beer in the US is fine but in an Islamic country where this is illegal is a crime. This isn’t rocket science, it’s literally what the words mean and it just unfortunately leaves you in a position where taxation isn’t a crime anywhere and you can’t use your hyperbolic and incorrect claims.

    Your argument seems to be centered around the presumption that the government is the ultimate authority on what is legal and what is not. I do not accept this presumption. For that matter, if this presumption is taken to its logical end, then you will have to conclude that none of the current governments is legitimate; for instance, the US government is not legitimate, because it overtook the British government on its territory, which is the ultimate authority - but that government, in turn, had overtaken the one preceding it, and so on.

    It isn’t a presumption, it’s just what those words mean. It literally defines their meaning.

    You want to appropriate them in the wrong context because it makes a petulant complaint about not wanting to pay tax seem more valid.

    Also you’re right, in historical terms the rebellion of the American colonies would have been illegal, but the US fought for independence. That does not change the fact that the US did establish independence and it’s own legal system. When you lead a successful revolution against the government because you don’t want to pay taxes, then you’ll be in a position where your complaints against the government matter and define what is legal.

    "Fundamental human rights" are exactly fundamental because they do not depend on any documents. Governments can agree on something and sign some treaties; but just as they cannot proclaim that 2+2=5 and make it true, they cannot proclaim that taxation is not a violation of fundamental human rights and make it true. What those fundamental human rights are, where they come from and why they are not just what I want them to be, is a separate philosophical discussion.

    What is the difference between

    -  a "fundamental human right" that is not recognised or codified as such and which the majority of people reject as something harmful they do not want

     and

    -  The wishes of a random internet poster?

    Absolutely nothing, which makes this not a fundamental human right at all. In fact by your definition as I hold that it is vital the people be able to coerce other to act for the good of the community, by your logic the right to democratically enact a government that can tax others is also a human right!

    Human rights isn't synonymous with your personal wishes and desires.

    You are drawing a false dichotomy here. No, in the absolute sense, I am do not approve of the state monopoly on violence being used to prevent murder, et cetera. In the relative sense, if it has this monopoly on violence, then it using it to prevent murder, theft and otherwise protect human rights is among the least offensive ways to use it, so I approve of it in the sense that it could be much worse. It is kind of like a guy who beats his wife every day: if he stops doing that and merely yells at her every day, but does not employ physical violence, then I approve of it compared to the alternative - but I still resent the guy.
    And again, it has nothing to do with what suits me personally. You would do well to stop prescribing views to me which I directly denounce; it is not a proper debating strategy.

    For the state to do this, it must be an authority that can coerce others. 

    You complain about taxation in these terms, with this being a specific quote from your post:

    'It is one person, in essence, putting a gun to another person's head and saying, "Give me a tribute, or go to jail. Go to jail without resistance, or die'

    That hyperbolic example can be applied to literally everything the state outlaws If that's how you describe taxation.

    Murder - 'It is one person, in essence, putting a gun to another person's head and saying, "Do not kill people, or go to jail. Go to jail without resistance, or die'
    Rape - 'It is one person, in essence, putting a gun to another person's head and saying, "Do not rape people, or go to jail. Go to jail without resistance, or die'

    The issue is you are only rejecting this in certain circumstances as trying to argue that the government shouldn't outlaw rape and murder isn't going to win you any arguments, but unfortunately for you this is a binary situation. The government i either an authority that can enact laws that people have to follow or it isn't.

    I am not making "illegality" the core of my argument; you are confused here. You started claiming that I was talking about legality a while ago, which I never was.


    Here's some quotes from your various posts:

    - ...Taxation is not theft, but it is robbery...

    - ...the government, or my neighbor, or someone else may steal my property - even if the act of stealing is covered up by law...

    - ...As far as moral classification goes, Yakuza and the Japanese government fall under the same category in my eyes: mafia...

    If illegality isn't the core of your argument, why can you not go a single post without making false claims that it is acting illegally? Why are you arguing so hard that you try and frame it as an abuse of human rights when it clearly isn't?

    The answer is that arguing against taxation on it's own merits is a losing proposition so you have to try and make is seem like a bigger issue than it is.

    No, the government is a robber by definition of robbery.

    No, it isn't and I've provided the actual definitions to show you this previously.

    By your own persona made-up definitions of robbery and law in your own private language perhaps, but we're talking English here.

    This "circular argument" is something you just made up; I never made it.

    It's a description of your argument. Take here:

    "The government is the robber here, and the robber does not get to say, "I reject your definition of a robber, so I am not a robber"."

    You simply presume the premise, that the government is a robber. You then use this presumption to make a claim - that the government can't enact laws legalising taxation because they are robbers and criminals can't legalise their own acts. This claim then supports your original argument.

    The reasoning goes round in a circle and only ever starts because you presume your conclusion is true with no evidence. That's what a circular reasoning is.

    See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circular_reasoning if you want to learn the basis of your logical fallacy in more details.

    What is property and what is not is not determined by the government. The government can make subjective claims about it, but it cannot decide what 2+2 equals to.

    Do you know what you remind me of? A freeman of the land, those crazy people that believe they've found some weird loophole that means the law doesn't aply to them, and your arguments carry as much weight: 

    The government literally determines who and what is people's property and they arrest people for taking property that isn't theirs. You may not like it and you may say it is wrong, but that is the de facto state of play. Moreover, your alternative of "I, a random internet poster" is both a completely subjective claim (like you say the government's is) and also has no actual bearing on how property is actually determined in the real world so this is a losing proposition for you.

    My attributions to "property" do not involve the governmental authority at all, and in every country that I know there is property that the government does not recognize as such.

    But your attributions to "property" don't matter to anyone but yourself, so using this in a debate to try and convince other people doesn't work.

    Nothing is "internationally agreed" upon, as long as there is a single person in the world disagreeing with it. As for my definition of human rights, it stems from more than just my personal preference, and it would require a deep philosophical discussion to explore it thoroughly. There is no philosophy in politics though; there is just a gun.

    Internationally agreed upon doesn't mean 'literally every single person in the world' believes something, after all there are still flat earthers so this semantic attempts to reject my argument doesn't work. You're still trying to compare an internationally agreed document which haves become a foundational aspect of law with the preferences of a random internet posted. Regardless of how much you try and argue over semantics of what 'internationaly agreed upon' means, the comparison is still ludicrous and your opinion will never be given as much weight as the UCHR.

    If you can make a moral or philosophical argument for why taxation is wrong or should be a human right then I suggest you do so as at the moment you're talking up an awful lot of time making bombastic false claims about taxation being illegal or the like, which could be better spent on making moral arguments where you might conceivably be able to make a case - thought even then it would be a case of taxation being wrong NOT illegal which is the point of this debate.

    I do not see anything in Act 3 mentioning "good reason". And if rights can come into conflict (they clearly cannot, otherwise they are not "rights", but I will let it slide), then the ways to resolve the conflict must be prescribed, just as in all legitimate private contracts it is always stated what happens if one of the sides violates the contract.

    Yes, I was explaining to you how it was applied, not simply quoting from the text.

    Also rights very clearly can come into conflict, I already gave you an example. Do you dispute that people have a right to freedom or that criminals who harm others should have their freedom restricted?

    And once again, my argument is not about legality of things. It is about the nature of things. "Legality" is very subjective and depends on a particular legal framework; "nature" of things is objective. If I drop an apple, it falls down; you can come up with many interpretations of what is happening, which would be a scientific framework - but, in the end, the apple falls down, and that is a fundamental fact that is completely independent of the framework.

    Legality can be subjective in some circumstances; borderline cases. Whether taxes are legal is not subjective unless you're taking an extreme solipsistic approach that everything in the universe is technically subjective, but in that case seeing as you can't objectively prove that anything material exists you can't prove that you're taxed or that you even have property in the first place the argument quickly becomes redundant.


  • @Ampersand
    Also rights very clearly can come into conflict, I already gave you an example. Do you dispute that people have a right to freedom or that criminals who harm others should have their freedom restricted?

    Here rests the fundamental differences between Constitutional Rights and Human Rights in a Constitutional Right a group must prove that a freedom is in fact under their control to considered t be without cost. This due to the point a Constitutional Right is connected to legal precedent.

    A person has a right to exposure of freedoms while a person convicted of crime by court has a sanction placed on liberty. A quick summery is that Human Right is under the impression that a vote describes free as freedom and anything free must be prove even out of court to not have a cost to even be honestly free. This is a particular high standard of proof and is not adhered to by most, they simply say claim this is my freedom and believe it ends at that.

    Constitution-

    The fundamental law, written or unwritten, that establishes the character of a government by defining the basic principles to which a society must conform; by describing the organization of the government and regulation, distribution, and limitations on the functions of different government departments; and by prescribing the extent and manner of the exercise of its sovereign powers.

     

    Constitution legal definition of Constitution (thefreedictionary.com)

    All the above can be simplified to simply say constitution is basic principles and legal precedent as a united state.

    Different forms of taxations have become different crimes. Some forms of taxation are kickbacks while others are punishment for regulation without representation in a court, and some are just theft. These are truths that had been held self-evident by acts of legislation by legislators in which the voters have been made accomplice.

    Again the principle to rain in this abuse is to address voting by representation to the laws in which we are governed.


  • dallased25dallased25 253 Pts   -  
    I understand the need for taxes...however, I do believe that personal property taxes are immoral and should be illegal. Due to property taxes, you actually never fully own anything. Not your house, not your car, not your inventory if you have a business...nothing. The reason I say that is because even if you pay off your mortgage, you have to keep paying on the house via property taxes. If you don't pay them, the government puts a lien on your house and takes it from you by force. Same goes with your car, assets, etc. So in this specific instance, it's not really theft per se, but it is the government taxing you forever on property that was never owned by them, but that they essentially put a lien on by you simply creating or buying it. Property taxes are simply immoral. 
  • @dallased25

    There is no need for tax it is a temptation of power it is the perfect employment package...pay us, so we can do what we want. Taxation was a creation of Monarchies to raise money for War and was done away with by America the reinstated supposedly was to again pay off Wars debt. Replacing slavery which is by constitutional definition now only power of criminal conviction of crime. Many people pay tax to receive services from the payments making no excuse for the necessity to receive an amount of service for what is felt paid for.

    Property taxation goes to education and by truth goes towards education and by todays standard goes to coaching criminal trials to intercept and help hide voter fraud in complex most likely illegal uses of law. The most ignored meaning to the 2nd Amendment is the fact it can describe taxation as an arm brought to bear as a weapon. The difference not every person has the united states constitutional right to tax others...

    There are ways to hold taxation legal and it requires United States of law held in Constitutional states of the union. Which can be a lot of work so is often neglected as it is also 


  • AmpersandAmpersand 820 Pts   -  
    @dallased25

    I understand the need for taxes...however, I do believe that personal property taxes are immoral and should be illegal. Due to property taxes, you actually never fully own anything. Not your house, not your car, not your inventory if you have a business...nothing. The reason I say that is because even if you pay off your mortgage, you have to keep paying on the house via property taxes. If you don't pay them, the government puts a lien on your house and takes it from you by force. Same goes with your car, assets, etc. So in this specific instance, it's not really theft per se, but it is the government taxing you forever on property that was never owned by them, but that they essentially put a lien on by you simply creating or buying it. Property taxes are simply immoral. 

    See, this is a take that I can disagree with strongly (I think property taxes are vital) but I can recognise that is at least cogent and based on a truthful rationale. There is no need for the over the top claims that taxation is a crime, the government is the mafia and freedom from taxation is an alienable human right.
  • @Ampersand
    See, this is a take that I can disagree with strongly (I think property taxes are vital) but I can recognise that is at least cogent and based on a truthful rationale. There is no need for the over the top claims that taxation is a crime, the government is the mafia and freedom from taxation is an alienable human right.

    The Second Amendment describes a right to Bear Arms the question Ampersand is does taxation qualify as a arm brought to bear against people?
    Can it be proven in a court of law when "someone" makes a public threat to raise cost of taxation top cause harm to people?

    There is no need for the over the top claims that taxation is a crime, the government is the mafia and freedom from taxation is an alienable human right. Over the top? Hardly. There is legal precedent as the United States of America was found on taxation without representation meaning there is plenty of reason for anyone who wishes to hold a taxation-based system in place should work diligently to ensure it is not criminally operated. What there is Ampersand is absolutely no immunity by constitutional amendment or legislation for perversion of taxation.


    Just to give a few examples, a women President is a possible crime of perjury committed by voters by the hundreds of thousands, whereas a women held as a Presadera is not being victimized by sexual discrimination and the voters had not been put in harm’s way to allocate money to back only one side of a legal battle. The same can be said about Abortion as criminal invasion of privacy making its use a malpractice of law overturning a court ruling does not change the malpractice it simple becomes a secret plan to jointly commit a crime to become part of the illegal act.



  • @Ampersand
     the government is the mafia and freedom from taxation is an alienable human right.

    How about we stick to facts that liberty from unfair, unjust, and taxation based on misrepresentation is an inalienable Constitutional Right. Misrepresentation is by legal precedent equal to non-representation and is an interpretation of legal argument before law. Any Constitutional Government is at liberty to collect a variety of taxation the liberty is not the given it is the model set to be earned and maintained.


  • bjinthirtybjinthirty 113 Pts   -  
    Ampersand said:
    No.

    Governments have a legal process for collecting taxes. It isn’t criminal and therefore is not theft.

    The counter to this may be that people reject the authority of the state and any moral basis for collecting taxes.

    However it is the authority of the state that also defines what is legal. If government are not a valid authority then there is no legal basis for decrying anything as theft as there is no authority to declare anything as legal or illegal.

    Either way the real argument of “Taxation = theft” really amounts to “I don’t like taxes”, to which the rebuttal is “Yeah, I don’t care what you like or dislike”.


    Who ever believes taxes are theft I welcome you to live in places like Somalia where government is exiguous to those who live there. There is no government infrastructure to sustain itself to cover everybody. Where there is no taxes to contribute to the GDP in place, there is trouble. It is not easy to have the annual GDP a country needs to sustain itself and everyone in it. When the system has or not reach certain areas in its territory you run the risk of crime rates spiking, rape, kidnappings, murder, genocide, and rebel groups fighting for control or sometimes even risk outside influences funded by a government like the spread of Islam against Christians and so on. In the country of Monaco you see no taxation but ultimately is a place for the rich off the french coast that is popular for gambling. They have requirements to live there which makes it exempt from being compared.

    If you feel taxation is theft then go ahead and picture yourself living in your area where there is no police buffer zone between you and safety. And you have to personally deal with any maniac who wants to get crazy with you. If you dislike this lifestyle then pay your taxes and be quiet.

  • BoganBogan 79 Pts   -  
    It is still the written law in the city of York, UK, for a British citizen to legally kill any Scot carrying a sword or a bow,
  • BarnardotBarnardot 157 Pts   -  
    @Bogan ;It is still the written law in the city of York, UK, for a British citizen to legally kill any Scot carrying a sword or a bow,

    You see dum laws like that and they don’t meen any thing like where I come from the law says that the hotels have to have a water troff out side on the street so that people can tie their horses up and get a drink. But if they really did do that then all the crack hoars  would think it’s a bath and they would drowning lol.

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