Mr. President, Have You Lied To Me
To Get My Money?
Dear Mr. President,
I am addressing this to you as the senior representative of such public servants as the members of Congress, the Director of the Internal Revenue Service, the Secretary of the Treasury, and such others who are sworn to defend and uphold the Constitution of the United States of America. I would like to include the directors of the Federal Reserve system, but I have no reason to assume they are sworn to uphold the Constitution as a requirement of their offices. I would particularly like to include all barristers who presume to judge the lives of their countrymen and may therefore have occasion to deprive them of their resources or their liberty for violations of the letter of the regulations and laws concerning the payment of taxes.
It has occurred to me that few Americans actually sit down and read the Constitution after passing their high school government exam on it. Not long ago I decided to read it again in the interest of comparing the life we now lead as Americans with the letter and spirit of that great document. I have discovered what appears to be a major discrepency in the activities of the Treasury, the IRS, and the Federal Reserve system. I am writing this in the hope that you can explain to me how it is that my discovery is in error. If it is not in error, then it seems that a great extortion, a great theft, has been subtly perpetrated against the American citizen through a conspiracy involving the IRS, the Congress, the Federal Reserve banks, and ultimately, yourself.
I recently answered an ad in a mail-order catalog for a way to legally avoid paying income taxes by standing upon the Constitution. I believe in the Constitution, and I believe in paying any Constitutional tax, but if the results of the research I began when I received the mail-order income-tax return instructions represent the truth, then I would certainly want to use this form for my own returns, in order that I might fully uphold the Constitution myself, even if you and those others I mentioned are conspiring to violate the Constitution and to deny me my Constitutional rights.
In placing this matter before you, I am taking the following position: I offer to fill out my income tax return Form 1040 exactly as instructed by the IRS, and to pay any and all taxes due, if you can show me how I can do so without waiving any of my Constitutional rights, or conspiring to violate the letter of the Constitution, or committing any crime. So far, I can't figure out how to do that, so I am asking for your help in clarifying this.
In my studies I have found in 34 Am Jur 2d, Federal Taxation, Criminal Penalties, the following:
- Section 9387: General federal criminal law also applies to tax crimes. Tax crimes also may be subject to criminal penalties imposed by federal law apart from the tax law, including
Perjury (18 USCA 1621)
Forgery (18 USCA 495)
Bribery (18 USCA 201)
Conspiracy (18 USCA 371)
False Statements (18 USCA 1001)
False claim for a refund (18 USCA 287)
There seems to be no doubt that one who violates the tax regulations may be guilty of performing an incriminating act. Now I also found:
- 34 Am Jur 2d, Section 9388: "Taxpayer cannot be compelled to testify against himself. The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides that no person may be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself."
It would seem to me then, that every American has the Constitutional right, guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment, to refuse to provide the IRS with the answers to any of its questions if those answers could tend to incriminate him. I looked into this a little further and found:
- US vs. Sullivan, 274 US 259 at 263: "....if the form of return provided called for answers that the defendant was privileged from making, he could have raised the objection in the return, but could not on that account refuse to make any return at all. We are not called on to decide what, if anything, he might have withheld...."
If I find questions on the Form 1040, the answers to which I feel could be potentially incriminating to me, then I alone must judge which of these I choose to answer, and which I may refuse to answer, claiming the right guaranteed me by the Fifth Amendment. According to the Eighth Circuit of Appeals case:
- Isaacs vs. US, 256 F 2d 654: "....He must be the sole judge of what his answer would be. The court cannot participate with him in this judgement because they cannot decide on the effect of his answer without knowing what i~ would be; and a disclosure of that fact to the judges would strip him of the privilege which the law allows...."
I was curious to know if this protects the taxpayer from being commanded to produce written testimony as well as spoken testimony, and I found:
- US vs. Sullivan, 274 US 259 at page 262: "The privilege is not limited to testimony, as ordinarily understood, but extends to every means by which one may be compelled to produce information which may incriminate."
- Heligman vs. US, 407 F 2d 448: o. .... The privilege must be specifically claimed on a particular question and the matter submitted to the court for its determination as to the validity of the claim."
- Hale vs. Henkel, 201 US 43 at page 74: ....The individual may stand upon his Constitutional rights as a citizen....He owes no duty to the State or to his neighbors to divulge his business, or to open his doors to an investigation, so far as it may tend to criminate him. . .
- Congressional Record - Senate, August 2, 1967, page 20961, "Rights of Taxpayers.': "Mr. Long of Missouri, 'Mr. President, I invite the Senate's attention to certain correspondence I have had with Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Sheldon S. Cohen with respect to the legal obligation of citizens to keep records, produce records, and answer questions relating to tax liability. ....Criminal cases have been veiled in civil clothing to obtain information illegally. Taxpayers have been bullied and threatened, especially small taxpayers and those without legal assistance. What should taxpayers do when faced with such a situation? Do all lawyers even know what the obligations of taxpayers are as to record-keeping, record producing, and question answering? The answer seems to be 'No'. For this reason, I wrote to Commissioner Cohen on April 17, 1967, and received his reply on July 7) 1967. ....The following are excerpts from Commissioner Cohen's reply, denominated US Government Memorandum CC:CL - 3487:
Good faith challenges in the form of Constitutional and other federally recognized privileges are of course recognized by the Service (IRS). For example, the privilege against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment may be a proper basis by an individual taxpayer for refusing to answer specific questions or to furnish his records.
"....Before recommending prosecution under section 7201 or 7203, the Service muSt usually develop enough information to show a substantial tax liability that was not met, in addition to criminal intent.
"....the Constitutional rights and other legal rights of all persons will be fully respected and observed."
It seems clear that the courts agree that any American may claim his rights under the Fifth Amendment, and so long as he submits a return stating his position on each question so treated, may refuse to provide the IRS with the details of his financial affairs. Will the IRS really stand still for that? The following seem to indicate that they must:
- US vs. Lombardo, 228 F 980: "....to penalize the failure to give a statement which is self-incriminatory, is beyond the power of Congress."
- Miller vs. US, 230 F 486 at 489: "The claim and exercise of a Constitutional right cannot be converted into a crime."
- Miranda vs. Arizona, 380 US 436: "Where fundamental rights under the Constitution are involved there can be no rule-making or legislation which can abrogate them."
- Sherar vs Cullen, 481 F 2d 946: "....there can be no sanction or penalty imposed upon one because of his exercise of Constitutional rights."
- Marchetti vs US, 390 US 39 at page 57: "....The Government's anxiety to obtain information known to a private individual does not without more render that information public; if it did no room would remain for the application of the Constitutional privilege. Nor does it stamp imformation with a public character that the Government has formalized its demands in the attire of a statute; if this alone were sufficient, the Constitutional privilege could be entirely abrogated by any Act of Congress."
- Lefkowitz vs. Turley, 414 US 70: "For asserting the privilege against self-incrimination, the respondent is to 'suffer no penalty' (Malloy, supra at 8); he is to suffer no 'economic sanctions', or loss of his means of livlihood".
Now it comes as no surprise to me, a firm believer in the justness of our Constitution, that our courts uphold the right of Americans under the Fifth Amendment in the preparing of the income tax return Form 1040. However, the reaction of the IRS strikes me a little strange. I find nowhere in the IRS tax return filing instructions the warning that the answers to the questions asked by the IRS are privileged, protected by the Fifth Amendment, nor do I find a warning that any answer I choose to give willingly may potentially be used against me in a criminal proceeding in a court of law.
It has been my understanding that even the lowliest of potheads, even the basest of thieves and murderers must by law be advised of their Constitutional rights and offered the opportunity to exercise them, and where information is extracted from defendants without this advice having been given, the defendant's Constitutional rights have been violated. I refer to:
Miranda vs Arizona, 380 US 436: "Constitutional foundation underlying the privilege against self-incrimination is the respect a government, state or federal, must accord to the dignity and integrity of its citizens.
....the privilege against self-incrimination protects the individual from being compelled to incriminate himself in any manner....
....Where rights secured by the Constitution are involved, there can be no rule-making or legislation which would abrogate them....
....Privilege against self-incrimination is fulfilled only when person is guaranteed the right to remain silent unless he chooses to speak in the unfettered exercise of his own will."
Yet the IRS presents its request for this privileged information in the form of instructions to provide the potentially incriminating testimony, implying that its rules and instructions carry the weight of laws, and must not therefore be disobeyed. Without warning that it is doing so, the IRS instructs each taxpaying American to waive his Fifth Amendment right and testify against himself. When the aforementioned pothead is arraigned and it is found that the Miranda Warnings were not given to him prior to his being called upon to account for his actions, the case is often dismissed for improper police procedure having violated the citizen's rights. Is the IRS really immune from this safeguard of the citizens' rights, or do the courts merely turn their heads where federal revenues are involved? Perhaps the IRS is let off the hook because the compelling force of its instructions is merely implied by giving the IRS rules the form of law. Even if this practice by the IRS should happen to be legal, it is a far cry from and no credit to the American spirit of fairness and honesty, Mr. President, and it smacks of a deliberate effort to take advantage of the citizens' ignorance of the Constitution in order to insure an expeditious flow of tax revenue to keep the pork barrels filled.
Curiously, I find that the courts are not unaware of this. I find the following most revealing:
- US vs Dickerson, 413 F 2d 1111: "Only the rare taxpayer would be likely to know that he could refuse to produce his records to IRS agents.... Who would believe the ironic truth that the cooperative taxpayer fares much worse that the individual who relies upon his Constitutional rights."
I support the Constitution and I prefer to fully exercise all of my guaranteed rights. However, this is not to say that I would not of my own good will submit a complete and honest return and pay such tax as I feel to be Constitutional and just. But there is another problem.
My research suggests that if I waive my Fifth Amendment right and follow the instructions of the IRS in filling out my Form 1040, I cannot help but commit certain crimes, including perjury and conspiracy. I find this most distressing, and in good faith I feel I ought to refrain from following those instructions until you can show me how I can do so without conspiring to violate the Constitution or making false statements.
At the bottom of the Form 1040 I find:
"Under penalties of perjury, I declare that I have examined this return, including accompanying schedules and statements, and to the best of my knowledge and belief, it is true, correct, and complete."
I understand this to be taken in the most literal sense, and that I may be justly prosecuted for perjury if I deliberately sign a return bearing a statement I believe to be false. The IRS instructions direct me to answer several questions, each answer indicating that I earned some number of dollars. It is on this point that I am confused. I am confused as to what a dollar really is.
My research in the Constitution indicates that a dollar is not necessarily the same as "legal tender" or a "Federal Reserve Note (FRN)". In the United States Constitution (Article 1, Section 8), I find:
"The Congress shall have the power to coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coins, and fix the standard of weights and measures.
And in the Unites States Constitution (Article 1, Section 10), I find:
"No state shall make anything but gold or silver tender in payment of debts."
I understand this to mean that Congress shall have absolute authority to print or coin money and to regulate the standards of weights and measurements. My study indicates that Congress designated twelve inches to be one foot, sixteen ounces to be one pound, and a certain amount of gold or silver to be one dollar. The Coinage Acts of Congress starting in 1792 established that 412.5 grains of silver 90% fine represented the median or Standard dollar in which the moneys of account of the US should thereafter be maintained, and that such a standard should be binding in the Courts of the United States. A silver dollar contains the required 412.5 grains of silver. It is not an IOU, a promise to pay, nor is it redeemable in anything or "backed" by anything. It is of itself a dollar as defined by the US Constitution and Federal Law.
I cannot find that the content of the standard dollar has ever been changed, although it says in Title 31, USC, section 821 that the President can change it if he wishes. The number of grains of gold which constitute a dollar has been changed four times by Congress, and the latest definition in Title 31, USC, section 449 reads:
"....new par value of the dollar or $1 equals 0.8289988 Special Drawing Right, or the equivalent in terms of gold, of forty-two and two-ninths dollars per fine ounce of gold."
The US Constitution, Federal Law, and the US Coinage Acts have defined the dollar as a coin containing a certain number of grains of silver or gold. I understand then that the Congress designated the foot to be a unit of length, a pound to be a unit of weight, and the dollar to be a unit of money, consisting of a quantity of~silver or gold. Conceivably, the foot could be designated to be fourteen inches, or the pound to be twelve ounces, or the dollar to be only 300 grains of silver, but if Congress were to say that a foot should have no length, or a pound should have no weight, or a dollar should have no silver or gold, the Constitutional definition would be violated.
Thus the dollar is not an abstract relationship of values, but a quantity of silver or gold having real value of itself. The Congress and the President are given authority to change the amount of silver of gold in a dollar, but short of a Constitutional Amendment, do not have power to make anything a dollar which is not some quantity of silver or gold. To the best of my knowledge, no such Amendment has been passed by Congress.
In 1913, Congress granted the Treasury Department the authority to issue paper money. There has been some question as to the Constitutionality of this. The Constitution does not say that a dollar is "backed" by gold; the Constitution says the dollar is gold. The move was justified by saying that the new notes were not claimed to be dollars, but merely represented legal gold or silver dollars, and that they could be redeemed for legal dollars upon demand from the Treasury of the United States. Therefore a person who possessed a Gold Certificate might correctly say that he personally owned a legal gold dollar which was being held for him by the Treasury of the United States. The bearer could honestly say then, that if he received a Silver or Gold Certificate, he had received a dollar as income. The certificate was legal tender, but not of itself a dollar.
Now it is my understanding that the Constitution specifies that only the Congress, and neither the several states nor any private person or institution shall have power to coin money or to regulate the value thereof. However, shortly after granting the Treasury the authority to print money, the Congress delegated the power to print and regulate the value of this bearer paper to a private institution called the Federal Reserve Board. This group of bankers promptly issued to the Treasury more notes that the Treasury had dollars to pay on demand for them. I can't say for sure whether or not that was legal, but it certainly doesn't sound honest for the government to promise to pay to its citizens money it didn't have. The justification was that a certain percentage of the number of FRNs would be kept in gold to cover the citizens' occasional desires to redeem their notes for coin, but that familiarity with and trust in the convenient notes would make it unlikely that the citizens would place a demand for coin upon the Treasury greater than the real money held in reserve could cover. It seems that the government actually gave a private group of international bankers the right to create their own form of money, and then accepted that form of money as the usual tender for conducting the business of the United States of America, thus passing control of our nation's financial affairs from the Congress to those privileged private persons. Was that a Constitutional act? It does not appear so to the best of my understanding, and I don't understand how such a thing could have been permitted to happen.
Then a strange series of events took place. The gold dollars were withdrawn from circulation, and all those persons who owned gold dollars were instructed to trade those gold dollars for silver dollars or silver certificates. Then in 1968, practically unnoticed in the holocaust of losing an unpopular war and suffering domestic strife, President Johnson authorized the Federal Reserve System to issue new notes which were significantly different from all others previously issued (Public Law 90-269). This law repudiated the government's promise to pay lawful money for Federals Reserve Notes.
Is it really legal for the President to declare that the debts of the United States are no longer binding? Does Public Law 90-269 really make void Title 12, USC, section 411:
"Federal Reserve Notes shall be redeemed in lawful money on demand at the Treasury Department of the United states, ....or at any Federal Reserve Bank."
Legal or not, the Federal Reserve System instructed us to trade our silver certificates, and thereby our silver, for non-redeemable trading paper written on a private bank and promising to pay nothing. Now the Treasury not only refuses to give me any legal dollars for these new FRNs, it also refuses to honor its old silver and gold certificates. If I take gold certificates, silver certificates, U.S. Notes, or FRNs to the Treasury today, they inform me that they no longer pay out lawful money for them, and that in fact they don't have any lawful money to pay out.
So where are all those valuable gold and silver coins now? Who has all that gold and silver we Americans once owned? Am I to understand that the Treasury of the United States is bankrupt of legal money, and that our country is operating solely on the credit extended to us in the form of trade certificates issued by a privately owned bank? And that furthermore, in return for issuing to us these worthless notes, these Idon'tOU's, that organization of bankers confiscated -- that is, "took out of circulation" -- all of those gold and silver legal and Constitutional American dollars that the Treasury had been trusted to hold for its citizens?
Am I wrong, Mr. President? Were those gold and silver dollars held for private persons not the property of those individuals? And were not those Gold and Silver Certificates legal and binding contracts to pay Constitutional money, made between the Treasury of the United States and the private citizens who held them? Can the Congress actually take upon itself to unilaterally declare those contracts null and void, or does the Treasury merely refuse to make payment on what is still a legal debt? When the Federal Reserve System issued its unbacked paper in return for the pre-1968 promisory notes and withdrew all the legal money from circulation, did that not constitute a collective swindle of all those privately owned Constitutional dollars, the real silver and gold we once owned? Is that not a crime, Sir? I know it would be a crime if I robbed the bank; is it not a crime if the bank robs me? Does the Congress have the power to grant a private institution permission to commit crime against the citizen? To the best of my understanding, it does not. I wonder if the Congress has the power to prevent the bank from committing that crime. The Constitution demands that it must, but it seems that money talks in this country, and de facto control is control, no matter who stands on the bridge of the ship of state wearing a cocked hat and a big grin.
Perhaps you begin to see my dilemma. If FRNs are not dollars as the Constitution defines them, then I cannot state on my Form 1040 that I received any dollars without making a false statement and thereby committing perjury. If, on the other hand, I choose to overlook this little industrial metals pilferage and say that the difference between a paper FRN and a legal Gold Dollar is merely a bookkeeping technicality, a little white lie told in the interest of the national well-being, then I could conceivably put some statement on my Form 1040 claiming that I earned some dollars last year. The IRS does not bother to inform me that FRNs are not legal dollars. They silently pretend they do not know, and encourage me by their instructions to report my FRNs as dollars, and to pay taxes accordingly.
Do you, Mr. President suggest that I, or any other American, should overlook the fact that our money system does not conform to the specifications set down in the Constitution? Do you suggest that we should claim that we have earned dollars, though according to the Constitution we have not? Surely you would not. After all, you swore in your Oath of Office to defend and uphold the Constitution. Surely you can show me that I am mistaken, and that such FRNs as I may come to hold can be used to get some Constitutional money somewhere at par. Perhaps a Constitutional Amendment has been passed -- and I missed it -- making paper FRNs the legal money in our land, and not those clumsy old metal collectors' items. Surely you can demonstrate to me that the gold and silver dollars held by the Treasury for us Americans are still secure, and were not used as collateral to obtain a loan in 1913 from the Federal Reserve Board in FRNs, and then repossessed in 1968. Surely you must have an answer.
If not, it would seem that the Congress has conspired with a group of bankers to violate the Constitution and thereby rob the citizens of this country of the entire contents of the Treasury, and that the Treasury, the IRS, and the courts of the land are participants in that conspiracy and its cover-up. This matter may not seem to be of great importance to some people. After all, it all hangs on a simple definition in the letter of one of our oldest laws. It may seem a nit-picking trifle compared to bugging an office to cheat an election, or a President's aide getting caught with a toot of cocaine up his nose. Yet the simple definitions in the letter of the law fill our prisons with the common variety of criminals. Should our government and the very powerful in our country then be judged by expediency and rationalization instead?
How about you, Mr. President? Do you support the Constitution as you have sworn to do, or do you condone the conspiracy to violate the Constitution in order to confiscate the gold and silver dollars of every American citizen, and thereby usurp the power of Congress? Did you claim on your tax return this year that you earned some dollars? Yes? Where did you get them? I'd like some too. Perhaps instead you received only FRNs like the rest of us, and committed the minor technical prevarication of calling them dollars to cover up the fact that all of our legal dollars have been taken from us. If the Constitution is to be taken literally, I believe that is a lie, Sir, and a deliberate and perjurative violation of your Oath. Isn't that an impeachable offense?
I am aware that it is no trifle to suggest that the President, the Congress, the Federal Reserve Board, the IRS, and every judge in the country are guilty of a crime of this magnitude. I sincerely hope that I am wrong, and I am prepared to apologize with my liberty if I have libeled anyone. You have publically stated that you are dedicated to the truth. I would like to
believe you. So set me straight.
How can I follow the IRS tax return instructions without waiving my Constitutional rights under the Fifth Amendment?
How can I claim to have earned dollars, if I insist upon using the Constitutional definition of a dollar, without making a false statement and thereby perjuring myself?
If there is no legal definition of a dollar apart from the Constitutional definition, and there are no more Constitutional dollars, how can I claim that the FRNs I have received are dollars without tacetly condoning the violation of the Constitution's specifications for the legal conduct of our nation's coinage and trade affairs? That, Sir, would be conspiracy, would it not?
If you find that there are no answers to these questions which satisfy the letter of the Constitution, will you be the President to stand before the people and tell us the truth? If an Amendment to the Constitution is needed to legalize these bogus FRNs, then publically acknowledge our delinquency and call for the States to consider the Amendment. If we have been robbed by our own bank, then will you be the President who will risk career and perhaps life to bell the cat and give us back, if not our money, at least the dignity of freedom from national hypocrisy? If in order to perpetuate our present system we must violate the Constitution on a matter as fundamental as who controls the money, and then lie to the citizen in order to tax him, then I fear that the great American experiment has already failed. I would find that a deplorable tragedy and I call upon you to set things right so that America may survive as the nation she was conceived to be.
I expect an answer from you, Mr. President. Have I made a horrid and unjust accusation, or have you and those others I mentioned actually violated the Constitution and lied to us all to get our money?
I eagerly await your reply and remain,
Respectfully your devoted constituent,
James Nathan Post