Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Does The IRS Exist?

In 1861, Congress enacted the Revenue Act of 1861.

This particular income tax was in its nature a direct tax. Direct taxes are taxes on real and personal property via means of ownership. "Taxes on real estate being indisputably direct taxes, taxes on the rents or income of real estate are equally direct taxes." Pollock v. Farmers' Loan & Trust Co., 158 U.S. 601 (1895)

On the other hand, "Duties and imposts are terms commonly applied to levies made by governments on the importation or exportation of commodities. Excises are 'taxes laid upon the manufacture, sale, or consumption of commodities within the country, upon licenses to pursue certain occupations, and upon corporate privileges.' Cooley, Const. Lim. 7th ed. 680." Flint v. Stone Tracy Co., 220 U.S. 107 (1911)

Read more on the Legislative History of the 16th Amendment.

The Revenue Act of 1862 was enacted the following year and within it, created the office of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue. This is the official name of this particular revenue collecting agency. Likewise, any official actions brought against this agency such as a lawsuit would be against the "Commissioner of Internal Revenue". For example, see Penn Mutual Indemnity Co. v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue, 32 T.C. 653 (1959)

Among other duties, the Commissioner can "recommend to the President a candidate for appointment as Chief Counsel for the Internal Revenue Service when a vacancy occurs, and recommend to the President the removal of such Chief Counsel."

Supposedly, in 1953, in Treasury Decision 6038, the name was changed to "Internal Revenue Service". This raises the question "Who made the final decision on this?" and "Did Congress authorize this particular tax collection agency to operate under this name". If this particular mystery individual, presumably an undersecretary in the Treasury Department changed the name, did he or she have such authority? Several letters to the "IRS" about these questions have yielded insufficient answers. Therefore, unless legal documentation can be provided, it is presumed that "Internal Revenue Service", "IRS" or any derivative are aliases. This is akin to a person claiming to be a police officer when they are not (perhaps they are just a desk clerk at one of the precincts) or someone going around claiming to have been "in Vietnam" when they weren't even born until 1963.

If you go to Title 31 under "Chapter 3 - Department of the Treasury", it lists a Federal Financing Bank, Fiscal Service, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network among others. No "Internal Revenue Service" is listed, yet letterhead received from this agency claims it is an agency in the Department of the Treasury.

So what happens if someone comes to your door, flashes a badge and claims to be from the "Internal Revenue Service" (as opposed to the Office of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue)? They would be operating without proper authority. Likewise, if you are harassed, threatened or your property is damaged, you would sue the particular individual in civil court or perhaps have charges pressed. You would not sue the Commissioner in U.S. District Court because this individual was not operating within the scope of employment.

This is why you need to keep the horse before the cart. The issue of how taxes are levied and how they are accessed is one issue. Only Congress has this authority. The issue of tax collection and who has the authority to collect those taxes is another issue.

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