William Thien

It Is Time to Put an End to Amendment Sixteen and Replace it With A Balanced Budget Amendment

Posted on: March 24, 2013

It is time to replace Amendment Sixteen of The U.S. Constitution and replace it with a Balanced Budget Amendment.

Amendment Sixteen is the “Income Tax” amendment which enables the levy of taxes on income. Enacted in 1913 the amendment enables the federal government to tax income in an almost arbitrary manner to pay for anything the government deems necessary. Prior to the income tax amendment the government raised revenues via tariffs (customs duties) and excise taxes. The founding fathers felt income taxes were more injurious to the tax payer than excise or customs taxes and so fought against income taxes.

You might say, well how will we as a country pay our bills if we can’t levy taxes when needed? We can do so by creating a balanced budget amendment. Many states required their legislatures to balance their budgets, why not the federal government?

Americans will not see any substantial and permanent improvement in their tax rates until Amendment Sixteen is abolished.

Copyright © William Thien 2013

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3 Responses to "It Is Time to Put an End to Amendment Sixteen and Replace it With A Balanced Budget Amendment"

I don’t see these two desires as directly related. I can understand arguments in favor of requiring balanced budgets, but that requirement does not specify a method for achieving them. The 16th Amendment is only one method of revenue generation, and there are an undetermined number of untried ways to reform the tax code besides just abolishing it.

They are not “desires.”

Many other nations have tax codes that are simpler than ours, that generate revenue in different ways; flat tax, value-added tax, usage taxes and other methods.

One of the biggest sources of inequity in our system is the loopholes and incentives that constitute corporate welfare. Oil companies, Big Pharma and industrialized agribusiness are profitable, yet they get huge tax breaks on top of that.

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