Thursday, July 15, 2010

Seasonal tax threats care of your accountant

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Its tax season and as can be expected every season, the Australian Tax Office (ATO) is out with its own form of "shock & awe". By that I mean psychological abuse. Basically the tax office is the execution agency which implements unethical laws. By that I mean there is no logical defense or justification for forcing you to pay tax. Of course there are plenty of rationalisations. But since they have no great conviction and they don't expect to either, they use subtle threats in the media. The nature of the threats takes the following form:
1. Appeal to fear: They highlight the consequences of not delcaring your income. They have more diplomacy than the Nazis, but rest assured its the same form of extortion. "We are targeting [certain] tax evaders this year". This year the target is taxpayers who understate revenue. Last year I think it was people who do not declare all their capital gains. The media campaign has the same 'feel' as religions of old, with pastors trying to scare churchgoers into giving 'penance'. Its extortion that ought to have been repudiated centuries ago.
2. Appeal to guilt: There are those appeals to guilt as well of course, with claims that you are a 'tax cheat', or a 'tax evader'. Nonsense. They are the evaders, for the reasons mentioned below. You know what it takes to 'earn' income, whereas they have to rely on extortion.
3. Appeals to utility: There is even appeals to utility, such as the fact that revenue is a basis for valuing an enterprise.

In defense of those who do understate your revenue....I say keep it up! Well done! You are a great Australian! Denying the tax office your money is the equivalent of sparing a bureaucrat his heroin, or denying a politician a pretense that he is doing some good with some stupid, ill-conceived program. Great Australians unite! Taxation is unethical. There is a plethora of reasons why. No good can come from it which cannot be derived from a moral system. It does not even benefit the exponents of the systems. These extorters will never have the pride or sense of efficacy which you derived from 'earning' wealth. Such is the nature of their need to control you. That is the source of their efficacy, to the extent that they have any ambition. They just don't have the efficacy to produce wealth in a competitive context. Just look how they spend your funds, with such schemes as Home Insulation.

Of course government services need to be funded...but they do not need to be provided at your expense, and nor should they be provided unconditionally. If the funding of these services was conditional, they would be provided with care, rather than indifference. If they were provided by the private sector, the provider would be accountable because you are a customer or a potential claimant in a compensation/legal case. For government, which is a middleman, they evade responsibility because they don't want accountability under their administration. That is why war pensioners wait half a century for compensation, when all the sick have long since died. This is the nature of their rout.
If you wonder why an accountant might be extolling the virtues of taxation, think no further than the fact that arbitrary tax systems create loopholes, which create a need for more complex tax systems, demanding an 'ever-increasing' number of tax exemptions, special provisions....sooner of later you end up needing an accountant, paying more tax than you should because you can't be bothered chasing people up for stupid receipts.
The psychological impact of this burden might slip easily off the more successful among you, but regardless, there is no question that such extortion precipitates repression. You simply don't want to consider the validity of these actions because you feel powerless to deal with them. Repression is a common response of slaves and simply people who are having problems coping with stresses they cannot resolve.
Andrew Sheldon
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