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Historical Perspectives on the Federal Income Tax

Linda L. Paull December 22, 2000

Chief of Staff

Joint Committee on Taxation

Longworth House Office Building

Room 1015

Washington DC, 20515

Dear Ms. Paull

This correspondence is addressed to you in hopes that it will be read; and that perhaps through you, our concerns may be heard. We do not protest taxation; on the contrary we understand why income taxation is necessary. We do however question the intent of Congress and the application of Subtitle A, of the Internal Revenue Code, to the wages earned by employees (labor for hire, common law). Our concern is not over the payment of taxes, so much as it is over the amount of those taxes and the hardship they imposed upon the cost of living and providing for the education of our children.

We have addressed our concerns to our local Representative Jerry Lewis and we appreciate his responses. However, he has not been able to answer our questions. We have also addressed our questions to the Commissioner of Internal Revenue with the same results. The following quote is from a letter to Mr. Lewis from Bob Wenzel of the Fresno office, in response to Mr. Lewis’s inquire in our behalf:

"The IRS enforces the tax laws passed by Congress. The IRS does not have the authority to make or change the laws; therefore, we are unable to render assistance in this matter." (Letter dated March 19, 1997)

We have been corresponding with the IRS, Congressman Lewis and others for the past six years; no one, it seems, is willing to answer our concerns. We, in turn, have spent hundreds of hours researching the Congressional Record, court cases, Library of Congress publications, the Statistical Abstract of the United States and other relevant documents in order to understand why, when and how employee wages became taxable under the Internal Revenue Code.

Our concern began, because of, the following quotations taken from the Congressional Record of October 16, 1913, Volume 50, Part 6 page 5679. This is taken from the synopsis of the first "Income Tax", levied under the 16th Amendment, and was prepared by Judge Hull. There are two primary concerns that directly affect the employee, which caught our attention.

First: "The Treasury regulations soon to be prepared will make clear to every taxpayer the requirements of the law and its application to income derived from the various kinds of business."

What "business" is the employee (labor for hire under the common law) in, and what relationship exist between the employee’s "wages" and the taxable "net-income" of business?

Second: "The Statutory exemption of $3,000 is allowed for personal living or family expenses;"

The current "allowance", under 26USC151, is $2,850. Somehow, due to inflation over the past 97 years, this "allowance" seems grossly inadequate in today’s economy.

In order to obtain an answer to our question we are being forced to resort to a process we do not want to take. By law, our only avenue for the redress of our concerns is through the processes provided by 26USC7422 and 26CFR601.201(a) and (e) (1). Enclosed you will find a copy of Attachment A, Parts A and B, which sets forth our questions and our documentation. The request for refund, effectively tied to the years 1997, 98 and 99 as a single unit, are included with the Attachment sent to the Regional Office in Los Angeles.

If we may be of assistance in your research we would be happy to provide the exact citations and documentation, including the graphs we have developed from the Statistical Abstract of the United States. Most of this information, however, is on line at our web site @ www.taxhistory.com.

A major tax cut is being proposed because of the "surplus"; perhaps it is now time to return the "Income Tax" to its original intent. We are expecting a timely reply. If you have any questions or require further information please contact us at the address below.

Respectfully submitted,





Gary and Michele Given



Senators: Baucus, Boxer, Feinstein, Gramm, Grassley, Hatch, LeHay, Lott, McCain, Moynihan, Nickles and Roth

Congressmen: Archer, Armey, Bono, Campbell, Cox, Crane, Delay, Gephardt, Lewis, Rangle, Stark and Thomas

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