Facing an IRS Levy with Fun and Fearlessness

(The following piece was originally published in NWTRCC’s More Than a Paycheck bimonthly newsletter in June 2002. For more information on how to deal with an IRS levy, consult our Practical War Tax Resistance #3: How to Resist Collection, or Make the Most of Collection When It Occurs.) by Thad W. Crouch It was April 10th and I hadn’t slept the night before. I had tossed and turned as I struggled with my conscience and my tax return. The question wasn’t whether or not to pay. I had laid that question to rest four years ago. The question was whether or not to be public about my war tax resistance. On one hand, while such a witness might be very […]

Affordable Care Act As War Tax Redirection

(This article appeared in the June/July 2014 edition of More than a Paycheck, NWTRCC’s bimonthly newsletter, but several links have been added.) By Robert G. Randall II Several of you have written about your own experiences with the Affordable Care Act (ACA, I call it Obamasurance rather than Obamacare, because, other than the free preventive care included in each policy, it really is not care; it’s only an opportunity to wrestle with an insurance company over who will pay for what care; that’s better than nothing, but we all know that real care will only come with some kind of single-payer or socialized medical system.) Because my wife and I have had a good experience with ACA, I think I […]

War Resistance Beyond the Rally

We’re holding our second Google Hangout on June 4 at 9 AM Pacific, noon Eastern. Hear from panelists from the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee and two of its affiliates, the Center on Con­science and War and the Nation­al Cam­paign for a Peace Tax Fund, about their ap­proaches to war resis­tance that go be­yond the anti­war march and rally to indi­vidual and col­lective ac­tions to re­sist war. Q&A will fol­low. RSVP on Google Plus. If you don’t have Google Plus, you can watch it live on YouTube.  

The Health Care Conundrum

Within the war tax resistance network we’ve been following Obamacare for a while, but a tax day article in the New York Times added to my own concerns/suspicions/disgust about the new health care law, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known at Obamacare. The article, “Tax Preparers’ New Role: Health-Coverage Advisers,” makes obvious the connection that war tax resisters have been concerned about: the central role of the IRS. Provisions of the law such as the requirement to have health coverage and the management of the subsidies are written into the tax code. Next year’s tax forms will have new lines to track this information. Now it’s not “death and taxes” but “health and taxes,” among other issues. “It’s a […]

Economic Disobedience and War Tax Resistance: Reportback from Eugene Event

I was invited down to Eugene, OR to speak about war tax resistance and economic disobedience at a panel last night, hosted by Eugene’s First Methodist Church and organized by Community Alliance of Lane County (CALC), Eugene-Springfield Solidarity Network (ESSN)/Jobs with Justice, Taxes for Peace Not War, and Women’s Action for New Directions (WAND). What a great evening! We had an attendance of 30-40 folks. After a performance by Plaedo, a local poet, I delivered the “keynote” speech on what economic disobedience is, how war tax resistance is economic disobedience, why it’s so important to live in accordance with your conscience and political beliefs, and a little bit about how NWTRCC uses social media. I quoted a bit from David […]

WRL Pie Chart — Escape from Responsibility?

A Distraction from Direct Action? Since the 1970s the War Resisters League’s annual Federal Tax Pie Chart has been a very effective vehicle to channel outrage and protest, by radicals and liberals alike, against U.S. wars and military spending. However, I’ve recently come to realize that all too often the pie chart (as well as similar analyses from FCNL, AFSC, National Priorities Project, and even the OMB) has been used as a means to avoid taking action or, at least, direct action. Having these obscene specific dollar figures and percentages readily displayed can be seductive (even mesmerizing): billions of dollars going to this or that imperialist war or horrible weapons system. Though this can spur people to lobby Congress or the President, generate letters to the editor, and even provide […]

Bringing War Home

When we talk about war tax resistance and why we do it, we tend to focus on the Pentagon and its warmongering abroad. Recently I was doing research for the back of the WRL pie chart and the true horror of weapons of war-come-home really hit me. Doesn’t this picture say it all? The police department in a little Florida town (pop. 5,350) is equipped with an 18-ton Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle, designed for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The military doesn’t know what to do with its war surplus (how about beating them into plowshares?) so lucky us! This largesse is in part thanks to the Department of Homeland Security, a “second defense department,” and just […]

7 Weeks Until #TaxDay !

Tax Day, April 15, is in just seven short weeks. Every year, NWTRCC network affiliates take action to bring attention to the United States’ military budget and to the tactic of war tax resistance (here’s last year’s Tax Day report). Common actions include distributing the War Resisters League’s federal budget pie chart, conducting penny polls, holding events to draw attention to war tax resistance, publicly redistributing resisted war taxes, and protesting at IRS offices. Don’t feel restricted to those types of activities though! If you’re not connected with a local war tax resistance group, check out our list of affiliates or start your own. If you don’t know any other resisters in your area, tabling or handing out flyers only […]

Ways to Deal with the IRS

While it would be great if we could have conversations with the DoD or Pentagon directly, for many war tax resisters our primary government contact is with the IRS. Beginning with the choice of whether or not to file an income tax return for Tax Day, our choice of resistance tactics can affect the type of attention we get from the IRS. Living on a low income may greatly reduce the possibility of IRS contact, for example. For those who do resist filing and/or payment of taxes, however, some resisters don’t hear at all from the IRS for years and years, while others are frequently contacted and collected on (and most find themselves somewhere inbetween these extremes) Those of us […]

99 Tactics of Successful Tax Resistance Campaigns

“The heart of any tax resistance campaign is the resisters themselves. A successful campaign does what it can to encourage, support, and sustain these resisters and to facilitate their resistance.” -David Gross, 99 Tactics of Successful Tax Resistance Campaigns NWTRCC network member David Gross has been working for several months on a book about tactics of tax resistance campaigns, and that book is finally published (free sample chapter available). Jason Rawn has done a couple of workshops based on material from David’s book, including most recently at the November NWTRCC conference in NYC. 99 Tactics details numerous examples of historical and modern tax resistance, with many examples from war tax resistance campaigns, and includes worksheets and other practical process materials […]

Watch Out for Tax “Help” Scams

There are lots of ’em. Many fly-by-night companies comb the public records for tax liens and then by mail or telephone offer to “help with your debt.” Some do their best to masquerade as the IRS, with official looking mailings or official sounding names. A call came recently to a war tax resister in New York from a man who said he was an agent from the “Investigation Bureau of the IRS.” The call sounded suspicious from the start (like from an overseas call center; the man began every sentence with an emphatic “Sir”), and the resister asked what state the man was calling from. When he answered “San Francisco” (the 51st state?), the resister asked what football team plays […]

Practical Reminders for War Tax Resistance at the End of the Tax Year

It’s time to take stock of your current war tax resistance strategy and prepare for any changes you want to make in the New Year. Are you new to the concept of war tax resistance, and not sure how to get started? Read this list of small ways to start WTR, and see which one(s) you can adopt! You can also contact a war tax resistance counselor in your area to talk through your choices. Are you a Don’t Owe Nothin’ style war tax resister, who takes legal tax deductions to get your income below a taxable level? Then don’t forget to take advantage of opportunities to contribute to education, health savings, or retirement funds, or to make charitable contributions. […]