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U.S. Federal Income Tax

Subjugation by taxation

The Purpose of the Class of Direct Taxation

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   The only section of the U.S. Constitution that actually authorizes Congress to make laws enacting and imposing taxes is Article 1, Section 8. 

U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 8

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

        This section also tells Congress that any Duty, Impost or Excise shall be geographically uniform.  This is the class of taxes commonly referred to as the "indirect" class of taxes.

U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 2

Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.
(The 14th Amendment converted the three fifths accounting so that the whole number of persons in each state should be counted.)

        Direct Taxes shall be apportioned.  We are told once.

U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 9

No Capitation, or other direct, Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census or Enumeration herein before directed to be taken.

        Direct Taxes shall be apportioned according to the Census.  We are told twice.

        This rule in regard to Direct Taxes is so important, the founders put it in the Constitution TWICE. 

Direct Taxes shall be apportioned.

Brushaber v. Union Pacific R. Co., 240 U.S. 1 (1916)

The court, fully recognizing in the passage which we have previously quoted the allembracing character of the two great classifications, including, on the one hand, direct taxes subject to apportionment, and on the other, excises, duties, and imposts subject to uniformity, held the law to be unconstitutional in substance for these reasons:
    Concluding that the classification of direct was adopted for the purpose of rendering it impossible to burden by taxation accumulations of property, real or personal, except subject to the regulation of apportionment, it was held that the duty existed to fix what was a direct tax in the constitutional sense so as to accomplish this purpose contemplated by the Constitution.

        The class of direct taxes insures that real property (real estate) and personal property (personal estate) can only be taxed subject to the rule of apportionment.

Pollock v. Farmer’s Loan & Trust Co., 157 U.S. 429 (1895)

Nothing can be clearer than that what the constitution intended to guard against was the exercise by the general government of the power of directly taxing persons and property within any state through a majority made up from the other states.

It is true that the effect of requiring direct taxes to be apportioned among the states in proportion to their population is necessarily that the amount of taxes on the individual taxpayer in a state having the taxable subject-matter to a larger extent in proportion to its population than another state has, would be less than in such other state; but this inequality must be held to have been contemplated, and was manifestly designed to operate to restrain the exercise of the power of direct taxation to extraordinary emergencies, and to prevent an attack upon accumulated property by mere force of numbers.

        The purpose of the rule of apportionment is to protect property from attacks by majorities in other states.  The purpose of the rule of apportionment is to "restrain the exercise of the power of direct taxation to extraordinary emergencies".

        The "inequality" contemplated is shown in the example on the next page.

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