There is a lot of confusion around taxes in the US, especially around federal income taxes. Many taxpayers are unaware that every year around 50% of taxes goes towards warfare and increased militarism worldwide. And in the wars since 9/11 about half of those tax monies go towards private contractors.
Then there is the fear that ranks taxes right up there with death. There seems to be an outsized fear of the IRS and the perceived reach that they possess. Some of the fear could also be related to a reluctance of squarely looking at what our taxes fund and don’t fund.
A major uniting factor for war tax resisters is a willingness to witness and resist the destruction caused by US militarism as it ripples around the world. One of the great strengths of the NWTRCC network is the collective knowledge and sharing current information. NWTRCC’s website spans a wide expanse of questions and quandaries related to making informed decisions regarding where our tax money goes. And still if you can’t find it there there are counselors throughout the country to assist with your questions.
Another great resource to stay abreast of annual changes to the tax system is information provided by the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Local communities often provide training for people who are able to assist people on the low end of the economic spectrum to provide tax information. There is also a wealth of online resources of training videos as well as interactive websites.
The ‘Fog of War’ is said to depend upon elements of fear and confusion. Military verbiage, jargon and acronyms are meant to sanitize the business of killing. Funding the war machine requires confusion to distract taxpayers from the simple fact that most of our tax money goes to militarism; draining resources from necessary human needs.
At this time of the year, many war tax resisters are starting to plan for collective tax day actions to raise awareness of these issues. The G.I. Joe animated cartoon series in the 1980s would always end with “Now I know. And knowing is half the battle.” I wonder what the saying of the war tax resister would be?
Post by Chrissy Kirchhoefer