Archive for January, 2012

A MODERN CRUSADE

Nothing can overcome the will of the American people. This was proven at the start of our country’s existence and has continued up through today. This is an important facet to our national character that is vital to our fight to establish the FairTax. During my efforts to do so I have had the pleasure of talking to hundreds of people, including some United States congressmen.  Aside from a few frequently asked questions, some of which I have endeavored to answer here, the main comment I have heard is that this is a great plan just impossible to implement. This comment is never regarding the mechanisms that will be put in place but the political difficulties involved in replacing the entire tax code with one that serves the people and not politicians. I fully understand how disheartening this view can be on any volunteer. It is difficult for us to hear that our spare time, money, and effort are spent in an effort that some call impossible. Before you lose heart, do realize that this backlash is expected when you account for just what the FairTax removes from our current system.

Aside from over 70,000 pages of complicated tax code our current system houses entrenched interests that seek to buy their own advantages while excluding everyone else. This can most easily be quantified when looking at the expenses of business in regards to lobbying changes in the tax code. It should be no surprise that businesses spend millions of dollars every year to carve out new exemptions and exceptions in the tax code that specifically address their needs while excluding others. These special interest loopholes are erased with the FairTax. That investment will be jealously guarded in the form of more money and lobbyist influence. An example of the audacity of lobbyists comes from a former member of the Senate. Chris Dodd, now with Hollywood’s MPAA, told his former colleagues that if they did not vote how he was suggesting they should, all Hollywood money would disappear from this election. Quite a threat when $4.1 million have already made its way to the President’s campaign. This outside influence quashes the ability for citizens to have any meaningful access to their representatives. A significant reason for this collusion is the complexity of the current tax code. The advantages enjoyed by these few groups have been bought with time and copious amounts of cash; they will not fade away easily. As daunting as this challenge may sound it is not insurmountable. Votes are always more precious to representatives than cash… if those votes may be shown to be in jeopardy. This will take numbers. Numbers are easy. Any candidate at the local level knows how to pass around petitions. Some are even online now.  Another great way to meet other grassroots activists is FairTax Nation. This requires a little effort but can be achieved. As I have seen from my experiences, people are inclined to support this idea when it is brought to their attention. It is the only reason I created this website and attempt to illuminate different facets of this marvelous plan on a weekly basis. So pass this blog along, tell your friends about the FairTax, enlighten your coworkers. If we are to make a statement to Congress then we should at least be able to talk to our neighbors. It might be difficult to believe that a plan exists to reverse this tide of government control, but trust me; people are more than willing to listen.

Another barrier we face in our struggle are the politicians that seek to utilize the tax code for their own personal use. This is merely another instance that places our Federal government in the position of picking winners and losers. However, a little more deviously, this sort of manipulation is often used in forming our tax code into a behavior modification system. There seems to be no argument against this idea. In fact the government seems very proud of its ability to modify behavior using the tax code. For those that did not click the link I would ask you to reconsider, it leads to the IRS website and an area that houses lesson plans for teachers. This particular lesson, lesson 1 of Theme 5, studies how taxes influence behavior. Take a look through the worksheets, it is not a college essay, it is designed for young children and is a shining example of the morbid obesity of government. The entire lesson plan covers areas including why one should pay taxes, the responsibilities of the taxpayer and how to measure fairness. Is it fair to have half of the population not pay any taxes, is it fair for Americans today to suffer under an income tax system that was declared unconstitutional in 1895 before the passage of an amendment to make it so, is it fair to punish success with an increased tax rate that serves to send our money overseas, is it fair to punish families with an asinine marriage penalty, is it fair to retax income when it is invested, collected as social security, or passed on to family members after death? No. There is a method to measure fairness before the congress today and it is not found in the bloated IRS teacher lesson plans, nor is it found in the congressional ability to tweak a 70,000 plus page code to play societal engineer. It is found in a bill, developed in the private sector, that frees the American citizen from the overbearing burden of the complexities of our current code. It frees us from an agency that attempts to instill our kids its own values, change our actions, and still has the power to audit us at the end of the day. It erases the stigma that surrounds April 15 and allows industry to create jobs instead of comply with an impossibly complex tax code that serves the wants of a few at the expense of the rest.

Like many with a just cause ours is ignored by Washington D.C. That is why it requires citizen action, it necessitates your involvement. The heroes of our movement are found in comment boards correcting the untruths found ever-present in statements by politicians or reports in the media. They are found speaking to politically active groups and even in Congress itself, Congressman Rob Woodall-GA in particular. This undertaking is a relative new one but has made impressive strides in the past decade. That speaks heavily to the heart of our volunteers and to the validity of our idea. There are ways to help. Some do not feel up to speaking out in front of groups or manning a booth. For those not eager to get out and rub elbows there is a rather elegant solution. It is called $5 for FairTax. One reason I donate is because the $5 a month is given to the FairTax organization and directed right back to my state and district. This allows for the purchase of materials to support FairTax activists in my own backyard. Our fight can be made a little easier with every donation. This fight will be won with individual effort, not owed to a person or a party. In the tradition of our forefathers we are standing up for the principle of human liberty and standing against an aggressively expanding centralized authority. We do not seek to
divide the 99 from the 1. We are not promising more for some while taking more from a few. Our belief is in liberty and the expansion of it to every citizen of the United States. This is more than a discussion of proper tax rates and the level of loopholes allowed. This is an ideological crusade against the diminishing rights of the people at the behest of an ever growing state. This is a reaffirmation of the liberty fought for by our founders. Our recent history has seen both parties expand government and its power. Our immediate future, if left unaltered, shows a continuation of this activity. When the ship is this far off course it demands something more than increased election turnout. It requires more than a blast fax. It requires more than an email. It requires a stand. The citizen is the basis for this country’s political authority. Consent of the governed is necessary for our government to retain control. It is time for those same citizens to speak. We are not beholden to the political machinations of Washington, they are beholden to us and us alone. This is a call for a crusade. One of words and ideas that will shake the foundation of our current political establishment. We must start with the oppressive tax structure.  It now acts as the foremost enforcer of the government’s will against the people. Once the current tax structure is dismantled the people can begin their work on institutionalizing liberty rather than power.

The power in Washington derives from the consent of the governed. The might of this country comes not from the halls of Congress but from the conscience of the people. Therefore the ultimate power in this country and the reason for its many accomplishments is the voice of the people. That is why it is so often under assault by centralized authority. Those of us advocating for a FairTax are well aware of the obstacles that must be overcome in order to see our dreams come to fruition. There are entrenched interests that are dead set against the idea of extensive tax reform and it will take a concerted effort by the grassroots activists to overcome. The concerted will of the American people has been called upon in the past to end the conflicts that spread across the world. It is now time to focus that immense power inwardly. Thomas Paine wrote, “We have in our power to begin the world over again.” They did and now it is up to us to continue the work. Starting now.

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TEA PARTY

Human civilization can be considered unique for the tradition of passing along important information down from generation to generation. More recently we have passed down debt but further back in our history it was stories. We know these stories today, the mythology of Ancient Greece, the heroism and hubris of Beowulf, or the lessons of Aesop. These stories are timeless because their themes are recurring. We can find other examples in our own history of recurrence. It is important to recognize these patterns because it is irrevocable true that history repeats itself. It is political common knowledge that the upcoming election is of substantial historical significance. One with a relatively short term memory can recall such statements in 2008, 2004, and 2000. That does not make it less true, however, it does beg for more historical perspective.

Our founders created a three branch government with a series of checks and balances for a reason. The thought was if the federal government was busy fighting within itself then it would be less likely to usurp power from the states and citizenry. Alas, like Julius Caesar, before it the lure of the sirens song of power was too strong for our government to resist over time. Even though our history is short there are a myriad of examples of improper expanse of government at the expense of the people.

Our founding rightly deserves praise for groundbreaking work in the field of liberty however; we did not get it 100% right. The existence of slavery was a mar on an otherwise perfect record. This odd chord was perfectly questioned by Abigail Adams in a letter to her husband written March 31, 1776 in which she doubted the Virginians had a passion for liberty because they had been used to depriving their fellow creatures of freedom.  This unfortunate point was hammered home in the 1857 Dred Scott decision. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney delivered the opinion in the 7-2 decision. Within it he described how descendants of slaves were not considered citizens because their ancestors were considered personal property. It took a Civil War, three Constitutional Amendments, and the Brown v. Board of Education decision to finally declare black Americans as equal citizens in their own right. One would reasonably believe that our country would learn this valuable and hard earned lesson. The road to equality was paved with blood and sweat through a 167 year effort. It seems unconscionable that we would now have an underclass in our society. There is an unrepresented and unheard of minority whose most basic rights are ignored on a daily basis. The unborn. Merely 19 short years after the Brown decision our Supreme Court classified another segment of the population as property. The Roe decision was not swayed by a nebulous “right to choose” but by an “emanation of a penumbra” right to privacy. By referring again to human life as no more important than a desk lamp our Court has overseen 50 million children having their right to life ignored.

Another troubling recurrence even more recent involves the government’s ability to imprison. In 1942 Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066 that authorized the internment of Japanese Americans. This executive order allowed local military commanders to designate military areas as exclusion zones from which any or all persons may be excluded. The entirety of the Pacific coast was designated as a military area and all people of Japanese ancestry were excluded. In total 110,000 Japanese people were interred. This action was backed up with a Supreme Court decision, Korematsu v. United States. Justice Hugo Black wrote the 6-3 majority opinion in 1944 saying that the need to prevent against espionage outweighed individual rights. This obviously is a very controversial opinion and ruling and has subsequently been redressed. Widely considered the father of the modern conservative movement, President Ronald Reagan, signed the Civil Liberties Act of 1988 providing $20,000 in reparations to each surviving detainee. This situation does differ from the previous example in regards to the need of reparations in as much as there existed surviving victims of the injustice and unlike slavery; Japanese internment was not considered a societal norm and was already in place. It was a new creation under the law and represented the removal of rights instead of a continued policy. It has since been a widely criticized policy not the least of which because there was not intelligence showing a growing danger of Japanese disloyalty. However, 70 years later we find ourselves in a regrettably similar situation. It is true that today we also find ourselves in a state of war. Although our troop strength is drawing down and our military budget is being slashed the need for more centralized power is still sought in the form of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act. Yet again American citizens face imprisonment without trial for an indefinite period of time. While it is written as to address the issue of American citizens abroad it also grants the US military the ability to carry out domestic anti-terrorism operations on US soil. Under the NDAA American citizens are not required to be detained in military custody, as foreign nationals are, however, the option to do so is left open to the state. We need not look too far into the past to see the state utilizing that option.

Our history is relatively short yet still full of recurring elements. “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again. There is nothing new under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 1:9. We are fooling ourselves to think that a new day by itself will bring miraculous change. This is the key fallacy of those making the argument for a flat tax. The first income tax in this country was passed in 1861 specifically to address the cost of war. Our first graduated, or progressive, income tax was passed in 1862. Government always seeks to expand its power. It is up to the people to provide the push back. This can be a daunting task for those that are isolated. No amount of strength or bravery can make the stand successful at Thermopylae or the Alamo. When you are outnumbered by that much it simply does not matter. That is why it is important to draw together this election year. Because David always beats Goliath when the playing field is level. If we can even the numbers, our courage and resolve can carry the day. Thirteen separate and distinct colonies united to defeat the largest empire of the Earth at the time. 2010 saw a grassroots wildfire take hold of our country. Recently, the leader of the Senate Democrat majority, Harry Reid, warned the Republican Party to distant itself from the “extremism” of the TEA Party in the upcoming election. Normally, in any contest, it is not advisable to take pointers from the competition. His comments are a mark of fear. The TEA Party represents the best opportunity for citizens to stand for their beliefs and join the political discussion. Our American history is marked by its people drawing a line in the sand and standing up for their own liberty. It happened in 1776 when we liberated a continent, in 1901 creating the first presidential primary giving voice to the voter, in 1920 giving all citizens the right to vote, in 1980 when 44 states had their fill of government regulation and appeasement and nominated Ronald Reagan, and in 2010 providing a historic wave election in response to unforgivable government increases.

You see, our stories are timeless because the themes are recurring. This election is the most important because it builds on the successes that came before it. It is time again to marshal our resources and take a stand for individual freedom. The FairTax is the way to reverse the slow expanse of government and reassert the rights of the individual. The TEA Party represents the ideals of our founding and is acting to implement them. Our causes are similar, our goals are the same. This year is a chance to reset the course of history and establish yet another American century. We have only to act.

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FUN FOR ALL AGES

It is odd in a country that took the time to add Article 1 Section 9.8 to our Constitution to have a tax system obsessed with dividing citizens into classes. The tax brackets are merely subdivisions of the upper, middle and lower income classes that are specifically targeted come elections season. You are treated differently if you are married or single, with children or without. But the largest difference that arises when an actual discussion takes place is the separation of age groups. To hear the moderators of the numerous Presidential debates so far one would draw the conclusion that any law has to positively affect senior citizens and negatively affect younger people or vice versa. There seems to be no law that would be beneficial to both.  Luckily possibilities exist far outside the minds of those in the media.

We should be clear about a few things, it is easier for people to deal with situations that are awful, as long as they are familiar, than with new ideas that sound a little too good. Many misstatements have been made about the FairTax including that it is good for the poor and upper class while it is bad for the middle class and that it is unfair to seniors. A Washington Examiner piece cites a Lawrence Kotlikoff study on three families making $20,000, $70,000, and $500,000 respectively. All families representing the classes our system fixates on. His study focused on what the transition to the FairTax would do to their effective tax rates. The lower class house got an 86% cut in its average remaining lifetime tax rate, the middle class house received a 46% cut, and the upper class house received a 42% cut. Separating the American public into these three groups is not only insulting it flies in the face to what our forefathers had imagined for a society of men created equal. The FairTax does away with this “caste-through-tax” system. By removing the income tax entirely the government no longer has to focus on the incomes of Americans citizens. If it finds the examination of incomes far too intoxicating to give up after the FairTax is passed then it should then focus on the ever expanding payrolls of the bureaucracy. By removing the income tax, payroll taxes, capital gains, and corporate taxes then the effective tax rates of all Americans decrease which leads to a growth for the economy aiding everyone.

Since kick starting the economy brings a benefit to everyone I would like to peer into the effect of the FairTax on the age groups that every reform discussion pivots on. The rather reasonable sounding argument about the FairTax’s effect on seniors is that it would require retirees to pay sales taxes even though they have already paid an income tax their entire career. Removing the burden of an income tax does little for those who do not need to pay it anymore. However, to rectify the mistakes in this argument one needs to understand that we are comparing two systems of taxation. To judge the effect of a new one it is required to understand the current one. The current multi-tax system is no friend to retirees. Remember that the money available to the retired has already been taxed through the income tax and payroll taxes. If it was invested successfully then it is taxed again with capital gains, the corporate taxes add to every purchase made, any social security income is also taxed even though it was withheld forcibly in the first place. In addition to that madness, April 15 requires the complicated filing of tax papers, most likely hiring of an accountant or purchase of tax aid programs. This is a hidden tax in and of itself. If there is any money left to be willed to another it will be taxed yet again. If you want to strip away these punitive and forbidding taxes support the FairTax.

Not content merely to extoll the horrors of our current system, let’s look into how the FairTax affects seniors.  Immediately removing taxes on social security benefits and capital gains provides instant tax relief. The repeal of any and all corporate taxes serves to lower the final price of any products. The cost of the new sales tax on essential goods is covered through the prebate up to the poverty level. There is no tax on used items and no reason to keep track of expenditures throughout the year and reconcile them in April. There is no estate, or death, tax freeing Americans even more. The fact is that Americans of all ages are actively being lied to under our current system. The FairTax forces these lies out into the garish light of day. Your taxes would be simple enough to be read on a receipt and long gone are the days of meandering through 70,000 pages of code to find exemptions which you may claim. Essentially, the FairTax treats Americans the way its government should treat them, with respect. No more will the government hand out with one hand as it takes with several more. The taxes you pay can be calculated by the day on your own terms and can be tracked to the penny. Our current system obfuscates the entire process and we are told that we are better off under it than if we were to change. It is reminiscent of a passed stimulus package that was to hold the unemployment under 8%. The warnings of Washington always hold a tinge of threat. We should learn not always to heed them.

The FairTax also has something to offer the rest of the public. A huge problem threatening future generations is the unsustainable spending for social security. By the estimates off CNNUS NewsPolitifactand the Wall Street Journal by 2036 & 2037 the existing trust fund will be depleted and 2029 marks the year less than 2 workers are paying for one retiree. Without any reform social security will not be around for children born today. That is a fact. All of this analysis does not take into account the politically expedient yet short term payroll tax holiday brought to us by President “Polls-are-down”. The FairTax fixes this antiquated funding mechanism by throwing all of the money into one pot. This allows the government to fund priorities such as fulfilled promises and defense. This also serves to make the spending process in Washington far more transparent. And it does away with another Washington lie, the self-sufficiency of the social security system. One of the ways to increase the transparency of government, and thus the people’s power, is to cut away at the institutional lies that it tells.

By fixing the funding mechanism for social security the FairTax provides peace of mind to those facing a future of unpaid promises and stops it from being a drain on our economy and an addition to our debt. By generating a robust economy the FairTax provides jobs for younger generations that cannot find them now. Our current system is a multi-tax system that shows the expansive power of the 16th Amendment giving the power to tax from “whatever source derived…” It has quickly turned into a system that can tax however many times. Many candidates and other plans only call for cutting off heads to this Hydra beast forgetting that with time and special interest influence the heads grow back even meaner. The FairTax pierces the heart of this unwieldy monster and restores a future for our children that teaches the honor and power of individual responsibility.

We do not live in a society structured by classes. We are not separated by ages, race, or gender. We are an American society that values the individual and should start living up to our founding principles. We can show young men and women that the government has no right to our property, we can provide working age Americans with the opportunities that their parents had, and we can give seniors the security they have earned. It has become abundantly clear that the centralized authority that directs our tax code now is not too keen on arresting itself. That job is left up to us. A FairTax works to give us a brighter future than the one we look at now. By fixing a broken funding system for social security it answers one of the biggest financial questions of our future. It secures it for those that are already using it and provides safety to those coming up. In fourteen Presidential debates so far with many more to come, the American people have heard many questions. At least now we have an answer.

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PASS, REPEAL, REPEAT

America is unique in history as being the first country to have its citizens decide for themselves how they wished to be governed. It is good for us to remember how groundbreaking this simple idea was. The deliberations that created our American government constituted a breaking dawn of a new age. No more should people resolve themselves to be subjugated or oppressed, the signing of the Declaration and ratification of the Constitution built an alternative to totalitarianism. As our government today sprawls out before us it is difficult to imagine that the impact of the ordinary citizen could even be measured. But, somewhere deep within our complicated system of government lays the original intent of our Founders. Unfortunately most of the opportunity for citizen input still resides in the states and has been buffed away from Washington D.C with increased layers of bureaucracy. It is in this Federalism that was carefully constructed by our forefathers that our hope strongly endures. In many parts of our country the 10th Amendment is remembered and respected. It is through our states that our grassroots efforts can be especially instructive and useful.

While there is a focus on the U.S. Congress we should not be quick to dismiss the opportunities available to us at the local level. As many are left without the chance to jet off to Washington it would do us well to remember there are just as many opportunities to advocate on behalf of the FairTax here at home. The best use of our time would be in passing state resolutions. These resolutions should be simple enough to describe the state’s intent to repeal the 16th Amendment upon passage of the FairTax at the national level. I mentioned this last week however feel this could be an important weapon in our ever growing arsenal. When I was in Washington this past summer for our “Storm the Hill” event our group happened to stumble across a Pennsylvania congressman who expressed his appreciation for the FairTax however expressed equally his strong doubt that the 16th Amendment would ever be repealed. He was not the first to express such doubt and will not be the last. We could rapidly expand our number of cosponsors merely by taking away this concern. It is easy to explain that H.R. 25 has a sunset provision implemented after seven years if the amendment is not repealed. It only makes sense that a congress that passes the FairTax would take up the companion legislation that starts the repeal process. It would stand to reason that a national grassroots organization dedicated to the repeal of the IRS would see it through to the end. If worst came to worst and the seven year deadline was quickly approaching then Americans would understandably request that the system that will grow the economy and give them back more of their money not  be replaced with a confiscatory income tax again.

But these arguments do not work to sway the minds of elected officials. I can imagine that they hear stories every day and one seems just as likely as the last. Results and political pressure work far more efficiently. When approaching your state legislatures it is vitally important to remember that of the 111th Congress 269 members listed their former jobs as state and territorial legislators. Another 214 worked in public service or politics. Those that travel to Washington can be found in our state capitol. Getting our states congressmen on record reaches a brand new level of importance with this information. A number of challengers to incumbents come from these positions, and if we have done our homework the FairTax could possibly become part of the debate. Once that happens we win, the easiest way to stop the FairTax is to ignore it, but once the American people figure out that there exists a plan that would allow them to keep what they earn our numbers rise again. Edging into the national discourse will only help our cause.

Far too often supporters of the FairTax focus on the finer details of the plan or the grand future that the liberty will provide. We should not neglect the seminal act of repealing the most expansive tax legislation in our history. While the 16th Amendment is short its verbiage is disturbing. “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several states, and without regard to any census or enumeration.” This single sentence served to revert an American Revolution fought for liberty of the individual to a French Revolution which murdered in the name of the state. In fact, support for a progressive income tax is found in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen. Our current invasive and oppressive tax code is an anathema to our Founder’s intent it should by right be repealed. It is only fortunate that today we have a workable and preferable solution to the tax code. The question should not be how a divided country can repeal an amendment it should be why has it taken us so long to reach this conclusion?

It was mentioned at ABC’s Republican Presidential debate this past Saturday that the spirit of America is going to be decided in the coming election. I believe that this competition has been going on much longer than what we see in recent presidential contests. 1913 marked a departure from the freedom sought by our Founders; there have been many other departures subsequently. The FairTax represents a return to form. The Federalism of our system is still reminiscent of the early days of our republic. It is through this system that we have the best chance of ridding ourselves at long last of an overreaching amendment that violates the heart of the American spirit. Talk to your local legislators, start a discussion and prove to Washington that the votes exist to put the American citizenry in charge of our economy. It certainly could not get any worse. The election, like the Olympics, requires a great deal of planning and training. This quadrennial event provides the public the clearest opportunity to be heard. With your help 2012 can begin to unravel the errors made so long ago. Passage of the FairTax is a powerful first leg of the journey; it immediately repeals our entire federal tax code and ends the IRS. To complete the journey to ensure our freedom we have to repeal the 16th Amendment an arduous process that requires preparation. The groundwork can and should be completed in advance to help further the cause. The people should lead the way through the states to change the nation. It is the vision that shaped our country at its founding and it the only way to “win the future.”

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Speech on Thursday, January 26

I will be giving a speech to the Boiling Point TEA Party in Keller on the 26th at 7:00. Meetings are held at The New Frontier Cowboy Church, 600 N. Main & Johnson Road, Keller, 76248 (located behind McDonnells Building Supply, Hwy 377 (N. Main) & Johnson Road. Please stop by and hear more about the FairTax!

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A NEW YEAR’S REVOLUTION

A Waterford crystal ball dropped in New York City marking the passing of one year joyfully into the next. 2011 and all of its trials are behind us. Normally the New Year brings its share of new chances and opportunities but 2012 is a special year in this regard. For those supporting the FairTax, 2012 presents an overwhelming number of opportunities to get involved and make a difference. It is no secret to even the most uninformed layman that the coming year will be a political one. The focus of course, is on the presidential election so it is easy to forget that every single congressman and one-third of the senate is up for grabs. As an example, tomorrow Iowa is holding their first in the nation caucus. The people of Iowa have an unprecedented access to the current Republican field. Some of the candidates have even made a point to travel to all of Iowa’s 99 counties. For a native Texan the idea of blanketing all of a state’s counties just seems impossible. But what it means is that American citizens will make this year an indelible impact on our candidates. Now is the time to get involved and now is the time to fight the hardest for our causes.

The elections coming this year will provide unparalleled access to our elected representatives. As they reach out to their constituents we need to show up as a unified force to promote the FairTax. Every office holder from the state to the national level should be, at least, asked about their opinion and stance on the FairTax. There are numerous resources to answer any concerns or questions you may face, six such concerns answered a few weeks ago here, and the FairTax FAQ page. Armed with this information anyone should be able to ask their Congressman for support and be able to follow up on any response. Additionally, in an aid to our cause no congressional office should be without the following information. At the end of the year popvox.com listed the top 50 bills promoted by citizens around the country. Popvox.com lets people vote on current legislation immediately giving their representatives a look at how their constituents feel on various upcoming bills. H.R. 25 was the second most supported bill in the country for 2011 and S 13 was ninth. As an aside the top bill for the year, H.R. 3035, was pulled by its sponsor and is no longer being considered. Making the FairTax the most supported legislation currently being considered. This is a nationwide poll that every elected official should be made aware of. Standing at 80% support shows that there is substantial grassroots backing for the FairTax.

While it is true that town halls are usually held every year and most members of congress enjoy hearing from their voters, 2012 is significant for this reason above all. Party conventions. Getting involved in your local party convention is an easy and unfortunately overlooked inroad. After the primary ask your local precinct chair or election judge the location for your precinct convention, after that keep pushing to go further to state and onward. This year both parties will have national conventions where the FairTax can really make some strides. Never underestimate the power and appeal of the volunteer. The FairTax will need institutional support since it will require a national movement involving two thirds of congress and three fourths of the states. It is also important we do not forget the magnitude of the task before us. I am not going to tell you that 2012 is the year we pass the FairTax or that by next April 15th we can all kiss the IRS goodbye. What we need to recognize is that all candidates are being asked about true fundamental tax reform. Not merely lowering rates or closing loopholes, people are talking about changing the tax system as we know it. As the nation looks for viable alternatives to a universally admitted broken system, the FairTax is a bill already written and before Congress, it has support in both chambers and a strong grassroots backing. There is no reason that we cannot take 2012 and make the FairTax a household name and the next substantive discussion.

One way to achieve this goal is to start this discussion at the local level. The most powerful message that we can send is one that not only reaffirms the importance of state’s rights but also the sincerity to our cause. By pushing our states to pass resolutions affirming their intent to repeal the 16th Amendment on the condition of the passage of the FairTax we achieve a dual effect. We show the federal government that the people are finally ready to take the steps necessary to unburden ourselves of an oppressive government and we get state congressmen on the record in support of repeal. Working on this does not require much legwork at all, since most local congressmen are usually not far away.

When TIME listed their top 10 New Year’s Resolutions list all 10 had had to do with making a change. Everything from better time management, learning a new language, or working out more, all had to do with people searching for something to change in the New Year. 2012 has been kind enough to offer up a bevy of options to alter our way of life for the better. One of the greatest impacts we could hope to make is dismantling our current tax code and replacing it with the FairTax. A perfect storm is brewing in the midst of an election year to offer us the greatest chance we have had in a decade to further the FairTax and mark 2012 as a year to remember. At the end of this year we will have voted in a new congress and senate, perhaps changed presidents and if we are diligent brought our dream a little closer to reality.

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