National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee

More than a Paycheck:News from the War Tax Resistance Movement
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Editor: Mary Loehr
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More Than a Paycheck is the bimonthly publication of the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee, a clearinghouse and resource center for the conscientious war tax resistance movement in the United States. NWTRCC is a coalition of local, regional, and national affiliate groups working on war tax related issues.

NWTRCC Mission Statement: NWTRCC sees poverty, racism, sexism, homophobia, economic exploitation, environmental destruction, and militarization of law enforcement as integrally linked with the militarism which we abhor. Through the redirection of our tax dollars, NWTRCC members contribute directly to the struggle for peace and justice for all.

April 2003. HEADLINES IN THIS ISSUE:

Click on a link or scroll down the page:

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Where Real Wealth Comes From: Grassroots Economic Development

by Paul Glover

Imagine if the billions of hours yearly of American paid labor were dedicated to making our lives easier, rather than to enriching banks, utilities, agribusiness, insurance companies, chain stores, oil companies and government. We could be living in homes and transported in vehicles that need little fuel. We'd eat far more food grown without pesticides. We'd be responsible trustees of the natural resources of our regions. Our time and money would be used to make our neighborhoods friendly and beautiful.

This kind of job creation is called community economics. Capitalism, by contrast, says that jobs come from investors and bankers. And socialism says that jobs come from politicians and bureaucrats. They both say that they are the only ones with the money, authority and knowledge to create jobs. But good jobs are now coming from average people who work, raise children, and depend on the health of communities.

Here's Where Local Wealth Comes From

Regions make themselves rich and powerful primarily by recycling their existing wealth, to magnify it. That means retaining the talents, skills, and money of local people in the community as much as possible, while connecting the community to take care of itself to the maximum extent practical.

Here are some of the ways this is done:

It's important to note that local and regional self-reliance do not isolate communities. They give them added capability to reach to each other, with ecological export industry and travel.

Here Are a Few Examples of These Jobs:

Virtually everything used in a locality can potentially be made locally, by small energy efficient shops that use regional resources, and which control and recycle all emissions and byproducts. Specialty materials shops (such as foundries & sawmills) can be linked to each other and to micro-industrial assembly shops by Flexible Manufacturing Networks.

Even today, thousands of high quality household goods are produced locally for internal markets, such as soaps, shoes, clothes, rugs, drapes, food, toys, and furniture. Communities are busy providing food & food processing, compost, garden tools, clothes, hats, gloves, shoes, wool & angora goods, plant fibers, recycled fibers, lamps, tools, forges, herbal medicines and healing. These are the basics.

There are thousands more products for which regional and national markets could be found, such as trolley components & cargo bikes, insulation, transit, compost toilets, cleaning supplies, scrap metal reprocessing. You name it; such products can be made and exported without waiting for external capital, and without further contaminating our environment.

Several related changes in local economies are needed to facilitate these transitions

Large scale employers would embrace job sharing and flextime, and consider the benefits to themselves and society of six hour days without reduced pay. Kellogg's thrived on this basis for 54 years.

All employers would end racial bias in hiring and invest in workers as assets rather than as costs. Research shows that labor productivity and yearly business growth are highest in countries where income is most equal.

Government would gradually cease providing welfare to large corporations, in the form of special tax breaks, bailouts and below cost sale of raw materials.

Bankers would learn that small loans are actually likelier to be fully and promptly repaid. Chicago's Southshore Bank and India's Grameen Bank have proven the superior safety of small loans to low income people. This requires an end to racial bias in lending.

Schools would teach all students how to become powerful community managers and creators of jobs, as well as active union and co-op members, rather than obedient drones.

Planning departments would become public resource & innovation centers, welcoming new ideas, serving the public, rather than developers.

None of the above is exotic. They are national trends.

With these tools we'll be able to use our buying power to vote for better communities and set examples for the world.

We'll measure our worth as neighbors and citizens, rather than as consumers. Yet we'll own more of quality than before.

Best of all, we'd revive an American Dream - to earn enough money from one job to raise a child, to feed and clothe ourselves well, and even relax. We'd have work that's creative and interesting. We'd have more than jobs and money. We'd enjoy life, by putting love at the center of commerce.

Paul Glover, a wtr living in Ithaca, NY, is best known for starting Ithaca HOURS, the first bioregional money. His latest project is the Ithaca Health Fund, a grassroots insurance fund. This and other articles by Paul can be found at www.ithacahours.com/archives.html.

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War, the National Debt, Taxes, and the Creation of Money

Part Two

by Jay Sordean

This is the second part of an article submitted by Jay Sordean. The first part is found in the February 2003 issue of More Than a Paycheck. The first paragraph of the article is reprinted below by way of introduction.

WTRS are well aware of the relationship of taxes to war. Understanding the economics behind taxes and war can be simple or complex, depending upon the degree of analysis. The GDP/GNP; percentages of U.S. federal discretionary funds spent on military purposes; the history of national debt linked to funding wars; the creation and use of central banks; the history of the corporate and personal income taxes; tariffs, and other taxes are all components of the more complex analysis of how taxes are related to war. A couple of books I have been reading recently that shed some light on these and other issues are Secrets of the Temple: How the Federal Reserve Runs the Country by William Greider, Hamilton's Blessing: The Extraordinary Life and Times of Our National Debt by John Steele Gordon, and The Creature from Jekyll Island: A Second Look at the Federal Reserve, by G. Edward Griffin.

The comments in this article are based on information from these three books.

The Federal Reserve

What is the Federal Reserve? It is a central bank and a private banking cartel. Its books are not open to the public, nor does it pay taxes on any interest it makes. How it works and its history are explained in a variety of books, like the ones mentioned in the first paragraph.

According to Hamilton's Blessing, at the beginning of the United States of America, Alexander Hamilton promoted the idea of having a central bank. Hamilton observed that governments had a history of printing more money than they could support. This was also the case of colonial governments. Thus he suggested, and it was decided after considerable debate by the young Congress, that a central bank be chartered and that it be a private bank. Thus, in 1791 the first central bank, called the Bank of the United States, was chartered for 20 years. However, the current Federal Reserve (Banks & System) began in 1913 and has persisted since.

National Debt and Its Relationship to War

WTRs know that the national debt is largely due to war. This is not just idle speculation or propaganda on the part of war tax resisters. Various books on economics and the national debt have documented this phenomenon very solidly. In Hamilton's Blessing there is a description of the national debt of the United States and how it has been created, managed, and controlled in various ways, including a very relevant history of the Federal Reserve (bank(s) and system) controlling the monetary policy in the United States. It was the debt from the Revolutionary war that prompted the creation of the Bank of the United States in the first place. A primary purpose of that bank was to help retire the national debt due to the war. The bank was created to raise the revenues needed to retire the war debt and to help finance the federal government's future need for credit.

During the Revolutionary war, the confederation of states, and the colonial states or commonwealths themselves, paid for weapons and soldiers to fight. They didn't have enough gold or silvers in their coffers, so they had to borrow money. This put the colonial governments in debt to investors and creditors. At the same time, the weapon makers made money on the sales. The creditors (buyers of debt paper, ie. IOUs) are paid interest on their loans by the people who pay off the government's debt by their labor. In short, taxpayers pay off the debt while those who purchase debt paper (they invest in the government's promise to pay) and sell weapons make a lot of money off war. This is the way it has always been in the history of war making. The "spoils of war" and plundering are also ways that assets are acquired by governments to pay off or avoid greater debt.

It is interesting to note that by even as early as 1801 Europeans held $33 million worth of United States notes. Foreign investment in the United States has always been important for its survival and prosperity. At any rate, the first Bank of the United States lost its charter in 1811. The Second Bank of the United States was chartered on April 10, 1816 and its charter expired in 1836. Between 1836 and 1913 there was no central bank.

The Income Tax is Born

The Bureau of Internal Revenue was created in 1862 under Lincoln. It was the "ancestor" of the IRS. The income tax originated in 1862 to fund the Civil War. This wartime income tax was allowed to expire in 1872. At the time of the Civil War, the income tax was 3% on income between $600 - $10,000 and 5% above $10,000. The United States was the first country to tax its nationals living abroad and it remains to this day virtually the only one to do so. The War Department of Lincoln was using so much money that another way of raising revenue was created - the war bond drive. It was very successful (and set the tone for the same type of campaigns in future wars). On the other hand, the South did not have the capital resources available to the North. The North had northern banks to help bankroll the war effort while the South had only about 40% of the North's ability to borrow. Needless to say, the South didn't prevail.

By 1866, the first year of peace following the Civil War, the national debt stood at more than 42 times what it had been in 1860. War sure can be expensive! But, by the turn of the century the Civil War had been largely paid for. While the people were willing to endure very high taxes during the war, peacetime was another matter altogether (Hamilton's; p 81) and income taxes, as well as the excise taxes in the North were being challenged.

Gold and Currency

An interesting issue came up during the Civil War regarding money. By December 1861 the northern banks stopped paying their debts with gold and the federal government had to go off the gold standard as well a few days later. The gold standard was something thought to be responsible for the great growth in world trade in the 1800s. But "the great disadvantage…is that no country on the gold standard can fight a great war for very long. Traders will always prefer the certainty of gold to the inherent uncertainty of the currency of a country at war and quickly drain the country of its gold supply." (Hamilton's Blessing, p.71) So, given the circumstances, Congress authorized the Treasury to issue "greenbacks," as the new paper money was called. Of course, this was fiat money because it was no longer backed by gold or silver. This is also why the FRNs are called "green."

The federal government has a budget and spends money. If it decides to spend more than it takes in, that is called deficit spending; the government thus decides to go into debt and must sell its debt paper to someone. It is the Federal Reserve-through its Open Market Desk, with its affiliated commercial banks and brokers, that markets the debt paper. The Fed takes all the government bonds which the public doesn't buy and writes a check to Congress in exchange for them...the money created for the bonds is spent by the government, and these bonds become reserves that the Fed can loan out, with 9 new dollars created from 1 dollar worth of bonds. This expansion of federal government debt increases the monetary aggregate ( the M1, M2, and M3)- the amount of money in the system. This money aggregate is something the Federal Reserve controls and tries to track carefully. So, this is how that money is created; in fact, it is made out of thin air. Or perhaps it is more accurate to say that money is created out of debt-but instantly at the moment the debt is incurred. Like Monopoly money, fiat money is only worth as much as people are willing to value/trust it during the game (of commerce).

Money is Cheap

Let's say a commercial bank loans a business $100,000. That loan (a note) becomes the basis for a $100,000 entry in the savings account of the business or the writing of a check for $100,000. Either way, money has been created by the simple entry in a ledger. The creation of money is really based on bank created debt. New money is created not only by the sale of government debt paper but also by loans from commercial banks. The businesses that do this are the Federal Reserve and private commercial banks (that are chartered by the Federal Reserve). Credit is what creates an expansion of the supply of money. And the printing presses are used to print the paper money (FRNs) that publicly indicate that the money in savings or checking accounts were created by a loan. This creation of money out of thin air has the aura of something mystical: hence, the use of the word "temple" in the title of the book Secrets of the Temple.

Furthermore, "wars are seldom funded out of the existing treasury, nor are they even done so out of increased taxes. If governments were to levy taxes on their citizens fully adequate to finance the conflict, the amount would be so great that many of even its most ardent supporters would lose enthusiasm. By artificially increasing the money supply, however, the true cost is hidden from view." (Creature from Jekyll Island, pp. 160-161). For example, the total money supply from 1775 to the end of 1779 expanded by an estimated 5,000%. The paper Continentals were traded for one dollar in gold in 1775 but were worth less than a penny in 1779, thus the well known phrase "not worth a Continental." That is also called hyperinflation.

In Summary

WTRs know that the national debt has its origins in the Revolutionary War and every other war since then. At the end of each war there has been a huge surge in the national debt level due to borrowing funds to fight war and due to printing of paper money. Nowadays, it is the military industrial complex that is a big winner in wars. The government borrows money and has the Federal Reserve print (fiat) paper money (or even more accurately stated, modern money is on-off silicon switches in a computerized banking system) which is transferred into the hands of the weapons industry. The Federal Reserve also sells U.S. government debt paper. The fiat money is actually a token expression of the debt that the U. S. owes to the Federal Reserve and those who own treasury bonds, notes, and bills. The Federal Reserve Bank, its shareholders, and member banks make money on the loans / notes that they issue as a result of creating money out of thin air. The Federal Reserve Bank doesn't pay taxes on any interest it makes on the loans. Strange world of money isn't it?

WTRs view the telephone tax historically as associated with the funding for the Vietnam War. This is why it is a target of resistance. Interesting to note also is that the personal income tax was created by Lincoln to fund the Civil War. It was reinstated in 1913 to pay for World War I. Because it has always been used to pay for war, like the telephone tax, one might just as correctly call the personal income tax intrinsically a war tax.

This concept of the personal income tax being a war tax is above and beyond the usual thought in WTR circles that somewhere around 50% of federal discretionary funds go to war related activities and thus at least 50% of your income taxes go to those activities.

After the Civil war, the income tax was retired in 1872, only to be reinstated by the 16th constitutional amendment declared to be adopted February 3, 1913. In 1913, there was an exemption for income under $3,000 - 98% of American families were exempt. Other exemptions to income tax instituted at that time included the proceeds of life insurance policies. One year later World War I began and "government revenues and outlays moved to a new, permanently higher plane as they have after every great war in U.S. history." (Hamilton's Blessing; p. 103). The Federal Reserve, as you recall, was created in 1913 as well. It is a private banking cartel. The national government possessed the unique power to create credit and money, yet it delegated the power to a select group of private corporations that were licensed as commercial banks.

For the complete article, with citations, contact Jay at DrSordean@cs.com with "NWTRCC article" in the subject heading, or contact the NWTRCC office.

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Counseling Notes:

Prepaid Phone Cards

Here's a note from a war tax resister regarding phone cards and federal excise tax: "Some time ago, I e-mailed NWTRCC asking if long distance phone cards have federal excise tax rolled into them. You kindly made good efforts to learn this, but to no avail, and you suggested I call a card company and try to find out myself. Anticipating a lengthy session on hold, I put this off for some time. Today, however, I called. It was a piece of cake. Yes, federal tax is added to your purchase of a long distance phone card. There's no escape! Hmm, I wonder if you could recharge a phone card by mailing in a check with a letter explaining why you're not paying the tax. You see, I've just made more work for myself! If I ever do this, I'll let you know the results."

Does anyone have any more information about this?

Deductible Expenses

In response to a question on our list serve about deductible expenses, Joe Maizlish of Los Angeles had this answer:

"Here's something from outside the Internal Revenue Code:

Every act of peaceable refusal and support for refusal is a deduction from the spirit of silence and the spirit of collaboration with warfare! That's a deduction we make all the time. And every act of redirection of energy and money is an augmentation of the peace spirit!

Shall we call that Peace Accounting?"

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MANY THANKS

Thank you to all the groups who have given since our last issue. Your support is very much appreciated!

Friends Meeting at Cambridge (MA)
Washington Area Alternative Fund (DC)
Oregon Community for War Tax Resistance
Coalition for Peace Action (NJ)
War Resisters League (NYC)
St. Louis Covenant Community of War Tax Resisters
Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet (MO)

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War Tax Resistance Ideas & Actions

Do Something!

Here is what the Maine folks sent out regarding Tax Day (in case you want to borrow some ideas):

Whether or not the U.S. military attacks Saddam Hussein and the people of Iraq, the amount of money being spent on the military and being siphoned away from real human needs in this country is astronomical, in the hundreds of billions of dollars.

Where does that money come from for all these weapons of mass destruction? A lot of it comes from those of us who pay federal income and excise taxes.

As Tax Day approaches, the possible war, the outrageous and excessive military spending, a sinking U.S. economy, and people's realization of what their tax money is going for can be combined into an effective Tax Day or pre-Tax Day event.

We urge your group to sponsor an event during that time around our messed up spending priorities.

There are many possible choices:

Contact the NWTRCC office for many WTR action resources.

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NWTRCC Business

An Appeal to Conscience

NWTRCC keeps money in its reserves to be used for outreach in times of war. We were approached by a group of people who met at the New England gathering of war tax resisters in December. They drafted a statement of support for those who refuse to pay for an escalated war against Iraq. We decided to help in this effort and using money from our reserves, mailed the statement out to everyone on our mailing list. Once we get some well known signers, we will be putting it in magazines and periodicals.

You should have received a copy in mid February. If you would like to sign on and have lost track of your copy, you can read it on our web site, or call the office for a copy. For those of you who signed the statement that NWTRCC put out last fall (we got 281 signers), we will assume that we can carry your name over to this new petition unless we hear otherwise. If you know of anyone who would like to sign it, please pass it along to them. Signers do not have to be war tax resisters.

Also please let us know if you can do some of the legwork for this project. Thanks!

Join NWTRCC in California!

The Sonoma County Taxes for Peace group will be hostessing NWTRCC's spring Coordinating Committee meeting May 16-18, 2003, in Santa Rosa, California. Please note that we have departed from our usual meeting date of the first weekend in May!

"Rekindling Connection, Realizing Strength During the Reign of W" will be the theme of the weekend. Friday evening and Saturday morning will be devoted to building connections with each other, Saturday afternoon will offer a panel and discussion groups, and Saturday evening, there will be a concert open to the public. NWTRCC will hold its business meeting on Sunday morning. People are welcome for all or part of the weekend.

This will be the first meeting for the new coordinator, and Mary Loehr will be present also, so it may be a bigger meeting than usual. Consider joining us!

Flyers about the weekend should have arrived already to folks on the west coast. For more information, or for a registration form, contact the NWTRCC office.

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Resources

War Tax Resisters and the IRS

This 50 page booklet put out by NWTRCC, edited by Clark Hanjian, is just out! The last edition was printed in March of 1997, so it was due for an update. If you haven't seen this little gem; it's an invaluable resource. It's got a flow chart on the back of actions taken by war tax resisters and expected reactions from the IRS, with detailed explanations inside. It also lists a review of WTR methods, and many legal resources, both books and websites. This edition contains several boxes or sidebars on topics such as "Should I use a lawyer?", "WTR's and Marriage", "Chances of being audited", and "'Frivolous Claims'". We highly recommend this booklet. Cost is $2.50. Contact the NWTRCC office if you would like to order some.

Guide to War Tax Resistance

The Fifth Edition of War Resisters League's book, WAR TAX RESISTANCE: Guide to Withholding Your Taxes from the Military is also just out! This book was edited by Ruth Benn and Ed Hedemann, both longtime NWTRCC folks. This is the most in-depth book out there about war tax resistance. (It's 144 pages, 8 1/2" by 11", and is illustrated.)

Chapters include: Whys and hows of war tax resistance; IRS collections and resistance; frequently asked questions; global and national campaigns;personal stories; legal options and organizing tactics; plus network listings, and more.

You can order one from the NWTRCC office or from WRL. WRL Phone: 212/228-0450 To order online, go to: www.warresisters.org.

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Local Group Reports

Santa Cruz, CA

A group in Santa Cruz, CA, is starting a public war tax resistance campaign focused around Iraq. Their statement begins, "Our government is spending $1 billion a day for military forces to attack Iraq while public schools are laying off teachers, eliminating vital programs, and closing schools. This is wrong."

They go on to encourage people to withhold some amount of federal tax dollars owed and to redirect that money to local public schools.

For more information, write Schools Not Bombs at PO Box 2066, Santa Cruz, CA, 95063, or call Anita at 831/426-1626, extension 307, or go to this web site: www.schoolsnotbombs.tk

Cincinnati

On January 11th, a coalition of peace and justice groups in Cincinnati held a day of "Empowerment Workshops for People Against War." They had hoped for about 100 people to attend, and were not prepared when 250 people poured through the doors!

The day held two sets of workshops, with one on war tax resistance in the second slot.

A WTR support group was formed and met about a month later.

Please remember to send news of your war tax resistance events in to More Than A Paycheck. Ideas from your group may spark other groups. Thanks!

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WTR Profile

War Tax Resistance and Me

by Aaron Falbel

In December of 1990, I became a war tax resister. Shortly before the Persian Gulf War (#1), I attended a peace rally on the Boston Common. Despite the impassioned speeches given by Howard Zinn, Daniel Ellsberg, and others that day, I had a sinking feeling that standing out in the cold for a few hours, chanting slogans, and marching through the streets of downtown Boston was not going to stop the war from happening. After all, why should President Bush care that my toes were frozen and my voice was growing hoarse. But sometime during that afternoon, a young woman handed me a half sheet of paper. On one side was a quote from Alexander Haig, Secretary of State, during the Reagan administration-"Let them march all they want, as long as they pay their taxes." That quote hit me; it really hit me. On the other side of the paper was an announcement for a meeting to discuss how one could refuse to pay for the upcoming war and redirect the money to organizations that work for peace. The idea seemed so simple, so elegant, a child could understand it: don't pay people to do bad things; pay them to do good things. I had been groping for a way to step up my level of resistance to US military violence, and this seemed to be exactly what I was looking for. I was determined not to be a mere bystander with respect to the impending war with Iraq, and WTR seemed to be a way to say "No!" in a manner the Al Haigs of the world would understand.

There were other, deeper, more personal reasons why WTR seemed "right"-right for me. Because of my family history, I feel that I have a special debt to pay to people of conscience, people who choose not to cooperate with state sponsored murder. My parents, grandparents, and other relatives were forced to flee Nazi occupied Europe during W.W.II. Being Jews, their lives were in danger, and on numerous occasions their lives were saved by people who protected and hid them, who warned them of raids and round-ups by the Gestapo and their collaborators, who provided them with false identity papers, and who eventually helped them enter Switzerland illegally and thus to relative safety. The people who did these things for my family took great risks. Some of their names I know from stories my grandparents told me; others remain anonymous. Their acts of compassion were strictly illegal: if they had been caught sheltering Jews, they could have been sent to the concentration camps along with the captured Jews, or even killed then and there. I cannot thank these people-most of them are probably dead by now, or very old. But to honor them, I can strive to be a little bit like them. I, too, can choose not to cooperate with murder, even if such non-cooperation is deemed illegal by the state-which it is in the case of WTR. Today, I am confronted by the same choice that confronted the gentile bystanders of Europe: Do I remain silent? Do I look the other way? Do I say "It's not my problem"? Do I obediently pay war taxes so that others can kill in my name? Or do I say, "No!" and break the law in the hope of saving someone's life? I owe it to the people who saved my family to choose this last option.

To become a war tax resister is, in some sense, to step into another world. "It will change your life," a fellow resister said to me early on, "but it will be a blessing." He was right. WTR has forced me to think about what is meant by the word "security." In a society as heavily monetarized as ours, security often translates as "financial security." Examining security has led me to ask the questions, what do I really need? What is truly my share? Are there ways of obtaining the things I really need without recourse to money?

What if the absolute "worst" happens and the IRS seizes my income and my savings?-not likely, because they are supposed to leave you with something to live on. But supposing it did happen. Would I be destitute? Homeless? Hungry? I think not. Friends and family would not let me live on the street, just as I would not let a friend or family member of mine become destitute in this way. People would help me out until I could get my life back together again. One would discover under such circumstances that security is not predicated by how much money one has in the bank or whether one has invested in various "insurance companies." Rather, real security, to the extent that it exists at all, has more to do with mutual aid, with friends, family, community helping and supporting one another.

Furthermore, it must be acknowledged that, whatever the bad consequences are that could conceivably happen to me as a result of WTR, they are nowhere near as bad as what happens to people who are on the receiving end of U.S. (or U.S. sponsored) militarism. The risks of not paying war taxes are overshadowed by the risks of paying them. I've decided that I would rather suffer than be complicit in the suffering of others-or worse, be an accessory to murder. Still, even as a war tax resister, my hands are not clean...

Indeed, WTR has made me think about the violence inherent in our economy, the myriad connections between money, greed, and violence. The more aware I become of the violence connected with economic activity-virtually all economic activity-the more I strive to live outside the mainstream economy-a difficult struggle, to say the least. This awareness, I feel, is the greatest gift, the greatest blessing, of WTR. If I have the courage to act on it, it brings me closer to the type of nonviolence that Gandhi lived and talked about: what my friends the Nelsons have termed "the nonviolence of daily living." WTR has helped me to live a more examined life, to seek out the root causes of war and violence and not just react to its ugly, outward manifestations. This has led me, more recently, to conclude that WTR, though necessary, is not enough. War taxes indeed constitute one of the principal resources of war, but they are not the source of war.

The true source of war in our time, as I see it, is none other than the American Way of Life - a way of life founded on and maintained by taking through force things that do not rightly belong to us, whether that be Native American land, or the labor of people of color, or 50% of the world's resources (used up by less than 5% of the world's population), or access to the markets, and thus the money, of other nations worldwide. Many in the peace movement are familiar with the slogan, "no justice, no peace," but if they really thought through the meaning of those words, they would have to confront the reality that we in this country cannot go on living the way we do. A mode of living dependent on exploitation and injustice cannot add up to peace, no matter how many streets are "taken to," slogans chanted, songs sung, sit-ins sat, or even taxes redirected.

My understanding of nonviolence also forces me to admit that I am relatively powerless when it comes to changing the behavior of other people. My influence on others, while not zero, is quite limited. However, I have considerable latitude when it comes to changing my own behavior, and as far as this is concerned, I will have my hands full for a loooong while yet. But I credit WTR, and individual resisters I've met, for setting me on this long, fascinating, difficult, risky, arduous, rewarding, surprising, and ultimately liberating journey.

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National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee

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