Episode 023 Show Notes
In our twenty-third episode Eric and Mike re-visit employers demanding employee passwords, discuss energy subsidies and address Obama donor/tax cheats. They go over the Fifteen and Sixteenth Amendments of the US Constitution. Mike pimps EOTech in "Prep School".
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude.
The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
Ratified : February 3, 1870
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.
Ratified February 3, 1913
Supreme Court Case Pollock v. Farmer's Loan and Trust Co. [157 U.S. 429 (1895), aff'd on reh'g, 158 U.S. 601 (1895)]
A two percent tax on incomes over $4,000 was incorporated in the Wilson-Norman Tariff of 1894, a test case was quickly arranged to bring the constitutionality of the measure before the Court. An income tax had been passed during the Civil War and had been retained for some years afterward. Its constitutionality, never attacked while it was in effect, had later been firmly asserted by the Court in Springer v. United States (1881). Nonetheless, the Pollock case, coining at a time of social upheaval, and when an extraordinarily conservative body of justices sat on the Court, took a new and surprising tack which made this, after the Dred Scott case, the most widely criticized decision in the Court`s history. The tone of the opposition to the tax was struck by Joseph H. Choate, who appealed to the justices to halt the "communist march" as he called the current demand for social reform.
The case was heard twice. In its first presentation, the issue was whether a tax upon rents or income issuing out of lands was constitutional, in the light of the clauses of the Constitution Article I, section 2, clause 3, and section 9, clause 4-which provide that "direct taxes" be apportioned among the states according to their population as established for representation in the House, and which prohibit any "cepitation, or other direct, tax" unless levied in proportion to the census enumeration. On the first hearing, the Court, by a vote of six to two, found that a tax on income from land, in order to be constitutional, must be apportioned according to population.
The question remained whether a tax on other forms of income was also to fall under the Court`s ban. Justice Howell E. Jackson, who had been ill during the first argument of the case, returned. The entire Court, which had been divided four to four on important questions raised by this case, now heard a reargument. By a five to four vote, the Court decided that taxes on income from personal property were direct taxes, precisely as were taxes on income from land, and were therefore also unconstitutional. A roar of indignation went up throughout the country, though many conservatives were happy at what they considered a blow to "Populism." Because of this decision, the Sixteenth Amendment had to be passed in 1913 before income taxes could be levied.
First tax bill
House Resolution 3321, the first tax bill, was passed on October 3, 1913. Paragraph G was inserted by the rich to protect their wealth through the creation of charitable foundations. It reads: “Provided, however, that nothing in this section shall apply.. .to any corporation or association organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, or educational purposes.”
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