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Debate: Income tax

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Is the income tax a good idea, or should it be abolished?

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Background and Context of Debate:

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Is payment of income tax required by US law?

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Yes

  • Section 1 of the Internal Revenue Code - "There is hereby imposed on the taxable income of (1) every married individual … and (2) every surviving spouse … a tax …"; "There is hereby imposed on the taxable income of every head of a household … a tax …"; and "There is hereby imposed on the taxable income of every individual … who is not a married individual … a tax…"
26 CFR 1.1-1(a) General rule. (1) Section 1 of the Code imposes an income tax on the income of every individual who is a citizen or resident of the United States and, to the extent provided by section 871(b) or 877(b), on the income of a nonresident alien individual.[1]



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No

  • Income is not defined clearly in US tax code or Constitution. Needs The word "income" is not defined even once in the IRS tax code, and if we refer to the definition of "income" as defined by the Constitution, we find that it is actually defined as "profit" or "gains," not compensation for labor, which as the_divine_mrs_m pointed out, is actually more of a barter than a profit.
[Staples v. U.S., 21 F Supp 737 U.S. Dist. Ct. ED PA, 1937] - "Income within the meaning of the 16th Amendment and the Revenue Act means, gain ... and, in such connection, gain means profit... proceeding from property severed from capital, however invested or employed and coming in, received or drawn by the taxpayer for his separate use, benefit and disposal."


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Would an income tax be constitutional in the US?

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Yes

  • Article 1 Section 8 of the U.S. Constitution states, in part, "The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises,..."





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No

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Are income taxes effective at promoting social justice?

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Yes

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No

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Pro/con sources

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Yes

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No


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