(originally launched into cyberspace on 01/28/2003)
Dear List Subscriber,
I just looked over the "opinion" by judge Conner in the injunction case
against Thurston Bell. I'll do a point-by-point rebuttal soon, but there
was a different issue about psychology/propaganda which it illustrates well.
At least 95% of the form letters, press releases, or other attempts to
refute the 861 evidence, both by government officials and private sector tax
professionals, are nothing more than "cut and paste" quotations from what
someone ELSE said. Someone makes an assertion, and no matter how provably
wrong it is, or how little support in the law there is for it, the
intellectually lazy status quo proponents (government and otherwise) just
parrot the same line, as if quoting someone ELSE making a mistake qualifies
as an authoritative rebuttal.
The history of the government's attempts to refute the 861 evidence looks
less like an explanation, and more like a rumor: the Tax Court makes some
lame accusation that the issue is "frivolous" (as in the Aiello case). The
Tax Court then quotes ITSELF making that accusation, as if that proves
something. (On one case it was even a Tax Court "judge" quoting one of his
OWN prior assertions as an authority.) Then the Tax Court quotes itself a
few more times. Then IRS form letters start to quote the Tax Court
accusation (while failing to mention that the IRS does NOT consider Tax
Court rulings to be binding). Then the DOJ writes "press releases" that
parrot it. Then Congressmen send out form letters parroting it. And so on
and so on. It's a long parade of intellectally-lazy "quoters," with
each claim relying on the one before, and the first one relying on NOTHING.
(A former federal prosecutor, Terry Croghan, enlightened me to this tendency
of officials to want to just find someone ELSE to quote, rather than putting
in the effort to come up with some substantive response on their own.)
However, in the brief that the DOJ filed a while back in this case (on which
they based their request for a preliminary injunction), they apparently did
a little homework of their own. (Very little.) Someone looked up Section
861 (imagine that), but didn't bother looking into it, or learning the scope
and purpose of those sections. The DOJ then argued something that the IRS
Chief Counsel is very careful NOT to argue: that Section 861 shows the
domestic income of most Americans to be taxable.
To be fair, that's an easy mistake to make when looking at Section 861 by
itself (without bothering to decipher the related regulations, or looking up
the history of the section). The following link shows the flaw in the claim
that 861(a)(3) means that MY income (and yours) is taxable: http://www.taxableincome.net/debate/otherside/assert7.html
As I said, I only just looked over judge Conner's "opinion" in the Bell
case, and he took the intellectually lazy, legally negligent approach of
basically quoting the DOJ's mistake as if it were gospel. A main focus of
his claim that the 861 evidence is "frivolous" is 861(a)(3), and the related
regulations at 1.861-4. The above link shows how wrong he was (and my
rebuttal to his "opinion" will do it more thoroughly), but the point here is
the LAZINESS of the judge.
I saw, with my own eyes, Thurston Bell hand a copy of "Theft By Deception"
to the judge. I heard, with my own ears, the judge say he would review it.
Many of you who have seen the video, in particular Step Six ("Intent To
Deceive"), will know that judge "Conner" either LIED when he said he would
watch it, has a really bad memory, or is a dishonest criminal. (I won't
bother to guess which at the moment.) He had--and still has--abundant
evidence proving that 861(a)(3) is NOT saying that the wages of all
Americans are taxable. And he ignored it all, or never looked at it.
Again, as far as I know, IRS Chief Counsel has NEVER argued that 861(a)(3)
is about the income of the average American. They know better. But when
some ignorant DOJ lawyer quotes it, because he didn't do his homework, our
supposedly-independent judicial "public servants" then just "cut and paste"
the DOJ SCREW-UP, and sign off on it. "Judge" Conner did not "judge"
anything. My five-year-old could have done what he did: cut out something
someone else wrote, paste in on another page, and put his name under it.
And now I understand WHY David Cay Johnston--propagandist for the New York
Times--changed his tune recently. He is now doing a "cut and paste" from
judge Conner's screw-up (which was a cut-and-paste from the DOJ's screw-up).
This is intellectual laziness at its finest, and David Cay Johnston is the
best example. I QUOTED to him the history of Section 861. I showed him
that the predecessor statute (Section 217 of the Revenue Act of 1921)
obviously was NOT saying that "compensation for services performed in the
United States" was taxable for EVERYONE. I walked him through the changes
over time, where 217 became Section 119, which then became the current 861
and following. I showed him how the regulations show that the scope of the
law had NOT changed, and how the GENERAL wording of Section 861 STILL only
shows domestic income (including compensation for services performed in the
U.S.) to be taxable when derived from CERTAIN ACTIVITIES (activities which
must of us are NOT engaged in).
Then, I asked a couple really simple questions (though these are
1) Did he agree that in 1921, Section 217 was NOT saying that MY
"compensation for services performed within the United States" was taxable?
(Anyone with basic reading comprehension would have to agree.)
2) Had the scope of the section CHANGED since then, to suddenly include ALL
"compensation for services performed in the United States"? (And if so,
when?) I gave him numerous citations showing that the scope has NOT
changed, despite the fact that the STATUTE of 861 alone and out of context
now gives an incorrect impression.
Those two simple steps demolish his reliance on 861(a)(3)... and judge
Conner's reliance on 861(a)(3)... and the DOJ reliance on 861(a)(3).
So what was Mr. Johnston's response? He didn't answer either question. He
didn't even try. Instead, he referred to all the CITATIONS OF LAW as
"irrelevant minutia," and then proceeded to parrot the various accusations
of how the issue is "frivolous," "absurd," "stupid," etc.
It seems that the debating skills of both the media and the government (ALL
THREE BRANCHES) consists of "whisper down the lane." The DOJ wrote a legal
brief that made numerous major mistakes. Here is my rebuttal to that brief,
which I handed to Evan Davis (DOJ attorney) myself: http://www.taxableincome.net/debate/attempts/dojrebuttal.html
Did they rebut it? Nope. Did they have any response? Nope. Did they
CORRECT their glaring screw-up about 861(a)(3)? Nope. They stuck to their
story, regardless of how provably bogus it was.
And then what happened? Then a lazy "judge" who had a copy of "Theft By
Deception" in his possession (and thus had conclusive proof that the DOJ had
screwed up) repeated the screw-up in his "opinion." Then a lazy "reporter,"
who had access to the video, and my rebuttal to the DOJ brief, and the
explanation of 861(a)(3) (linked to above), and a CUSTOM EXPLANATION TO HIM
PERSONALLY, and half a dozen other things proving that the DOJ AND THE JUDGE
HAD SCREWED UP, just parroted the same screw-up again. (It appears that Mr.
Johnston prefers the "rulings" of mere mortals who have gavels and robes, to
This is what we are up against. These people don't THINK; they parrot.
They can spout the words, but they know nothing of the SUBSTANCE. (The many
who have tried to get a substantive conversation out of David Cay Johnston
know what I mean.) They spout the line of the last parrot who spouted it.
If you try to address something that the previous parrot did not address,
they fall apart. Just like an African Gray (parrot), they can do a
monologue which sounds sort of like they understand what they are saying.
But you'd have an easier time getting a rational DISCUSSION of the issue out
of your furniture, than you would out of these "reporters" and "judges."
This is how most people think... or DON'T think. They have BELIEFS, and
they are scared to death of questioning them. They have monologues to
justify their beliefs, but react irrationally and often viciously when you
show them EVIDENCE that doesn't fit their beliefs. They are comfortable
parroting what their fellow believers say, but they freak out when there is
a substantive, logical challenge to their beliefs. They react with
accusations, insults, threats, etc.
The good news is that that NEVER holds the truth off forever.
"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed, second it is
violently opposed, and third, it is accepted as self-evident." (Arthur