Podcast #4: Talking with Shane Claiborne

war tax talk podcast logoShane Claiborne is a Christian author and speaker, founder of the Simple Way community in Philadelphia, and war tax resister. In 2011, he announced his war tax resistance in articles that ran on major secular and Christian websites like Huffington Post and Christianity Today. In this interview, learn the surprising way the IRS responded to his resistance (a lesson for all low-income filers!) and more about the ideals that led Shane to live on a low income and to resist and redirect war taxes.

Listen to Talking with Shane Claiborne.

Subscribe to the podcast feed by adding http://feeds.feedburner.com/WarTaxTalkPodcast to your RSS reader. We are also now on iTunes as War Tax Talk. Send suggestions for podcast/Google Hangout topics or promotion ideas to wartaxresister at nwtrcc dot org.

Listen to other audio interviews with war tax resisters.

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New Video: Letters from War Tax Resisters

Hear three letters from war tax resisters to the IRS, family members, and the local newspaper. [closed captioning available]

This year, as for many decades before, thousands of people around the country are refusing to pay some or all of their federal income taxes as a protest and/or an act of conscientious objection against the 45% of the federal budget that pays for war. We call on all people who desire peace to consider starting war tax resistance.

Margaret says, “I cannot in good conscience send [the IRS] any money which would be used for training, arming or sending military forces to participate in war.” Ari says, “As I calculate my total taxes “owed” I like to dream about how the money will be used. Instead of paying for drones or bombs I am paying to ensure that everyone has access to basic needs and the tools needed to succeed in our community.”

Do you want to learn more? Check out NWTRCC’s resource pages: What is WTR?, How to Resist, Redirection, and Consequences. To get in depth, read our Practical War Tax Resistance series, contact a war tax resistance group or counselor, or contact our office (nwtrcc at nwtrcc dot org • PO Box 150553, Brooklyn, NY 11215‒0553 • (718) 768‒3420 • (800) 269‒7464).

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Pi Day 2015: Getting Our Peace of the Pie

For math lovers, 3-14-15 holds special significance. It’s the annual Pi Day, but not just any Pi Day: “In the year 2015, Pi Day will have special significance on 3/14/15 at 9:26:53 a.m. and p.m., with the date and time representing the first 10 digits of π. That same second will also contain a precise instant corresponding to all of the digits of π.” (Wikipedia)

We peace activists have our own significant — in this case — “pie.” That’s the    pie chart that shows how the federal government spends U.S. income tax dollars and the shocking priority on war represented by the pie. War Resisters WRL-FY2016-pie-chartLeague began producing a pie chart in 1977 for the first edition of the Guide to War Tax Resistance. Since then WRL has produced a flyer every year, both to help war tax resisters and potential resisters determine their level of resistance and as a tool for public outreach.

With Pi Day falling a month before tax day, it’s an excellent time to get hold of some flyers and head out to the streets. You can download the flyer or order bulk quantities from WRL.

If you don’t feel like leafleting, there are other ways to participate in “pie” day and “pie” actions between now and Tax Day, April 15:

Asheville, NC pie chart banner with Judy Conrad and Clare HanrahanThe weather is getting warmer. Make a banner, grab a friend, and hang out in a park or at a busy intersection for a while like Judy and Clare did in Asheville, North Carolina.  Or Human Pie Charthow about a human pie chart to attract attention to your leafleting? That group was on the mall in Washington, DC, while others leafleted the pie chart nearby.

Like food? Have a pie potluck, like the Peace and Palo Alto Friends peace pie partySocial Action Committee of the Palo Alto Friends Meeting did a while back. They served homemade pies — lemon custard, banana cream, apple, blueberry, pumpkin, and others — that were aHow to cut a federal budget piell sliced with a template following WRL’s pie chart. As pie eaters requested a slice, they were asked to identify their favorite government program or priority. If they were unhappy with a small slice, they were asked if they’d like to take a portion out of the military budget.

OPizza Party for Peace on Tax Dayr, what better day for a Pizza Party for Peace than tax day? The folks at Richmond Peace Education Center had their party right in front of the post office on tax day.

Be sure to have a stack of our pie chart cards at all your events.

World War I Pie Chart - 1915-1919Pi Day brings to mind some fun actions, but a more somber commemoration is the ongoing attention to the centenary of World War I, the war to end all wars…. And yes, this connects to pies, because activist Ed Hedemann researched military spending back then and came up with a 1919 pie chart. He also looked back to 1915, before the U.S. geared up for war — that’s the tiny little circle on top of the bigger pie pictured here. The federal budget exploded as the U.S. entered the war, and so did the government’s demand for more revenue. Follow the link above or on the pie graphic to read his full analysis and see larger version so the 1919 pie.

—Post by Ruth Benn

Code Pink activist with Occu-PieP.S. I forgot about Occu-Pie!

Other groups with “where your income taxes go” analysis include:

National Priorities Project – click on “Where Your Tax Dollars Went”

Friends Committee on National Legislation – look for the “Where Do Our Income Taxes Go” factsheet link

To help answer questions about confusing federal budget breakdowns among peace groups, see Pies, Graphs, and Income Taxes.




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