No representation without taxation!

Reverend Jonathan Mayhew coined the phrase "No Taxation Without Representation!" during a sermon in Boston in 1750. This sentiment led to the original Tea Party and helped fuel the American Revolution. The English Bill of Rights required the consent of Parliament prior to the imposition of taxes and the colonists where not represented in Parliament. 260 years later, with tax day upon us, the situation is quite reversed. We Americans are now over represented (in that those representatives want to "help" in every facet of our lives) AND over taxed (to pay for all that help.)
A study recently released by the Tax Policy Center finds that about 47 percent of Americans will pay NO federal income taxes for 2009. In 2007, the top 10% of taxpayers paid over 71% of all personal income taxes according to the National Taxpayers Union.

Ben Franklin said "When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic." Given the above, I fear we may be reaching that point. To alleviate the problem, I have a modest proposal. Our progressive friends are always most concerned about "fairness" when it comes to taxation. What could be fairer (and more appealing to progressives), than following the SECULAR golden rule "he who has the gold makes the rules." It is time to link representation WITH taxation. It can be achieved in two steps.

Step One: Make the right to vote in federal elections contingent upon having paid federal income taxes at least once during the previous two years (to match election cycles). The language could easily be modeled after the 26th Amendment : "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall be contingent upon paying federal income taxes at least once in the two years prior to an election."

Implementation of Step One could be fairly simple, when you show up at the polls you have to show your voter registration card and tax return validated by the IRS. The work could easily be done by 12,000 extra IRS agents recently added by the health care bill. With this change, our representatives would truly be motivated to start paying attention to the taxpayer since the taxpayer is the only one who can vote for them. As a bonus, it will motivate citizens that don't pay taxes to step up and do their part in order to participate in the democratic process.

Over time, Step One may not be enough. A clever Congress could rig the income tax code so that everyone pays at least one dollar and we'll be back where we started. Also, is it really fair that someone in the top tax bracket gets the same vote as someone in a lower tax bracket? Fortunately, the federal government's takeover of private industry shows us the way.

Step Two: "What's good for General Motors is good for the country." Since we now "own" GM and other "private" entities we can easily adopt the proxy voting systems used in corporate America for federal elections (in corporate elections each shareholder gets voting power in proportion to shares owned). Each eligible voter would have a total number of votes equal to the dollar amount paid in personal federal income taxes over the previous two years. If you paid $20,000 in taxes you get 20,000 votes. If you paid $200,000 in taxes you get 200,000 votes. Again, what could be fairer?

There will be challenges. We'll need to prevent fraud (especially since the current system has no fraud), and we may need special training for Broward County. We also need to accept the fact that Bill Gates alone may elect the entire Washington State Congressional delegation and Warren Buffett may do the same for Nebraska. All in all, a small price to pay to preserve the Republic and put money back into its rightful place in politics. Power to the Taxpayer!


M Allen Fritsch is an entrepreneur and business owner. He is a graduate of the United States Military Academy and a former Army officer. He is one of the 53% of Americans that WILL pay federal taxes in 2009.



Reverend Jonathan Mayhew coined the phrase "No Taxation Without Representation!" during a sermon in Boston in 1750. This sentiment led to the original Tea Party and helped fuel the American Revolution. The English Bill of Rights required the consent of Parliament prior to the imposition of taxes and the colonists where not represented in Parliament. 260 years later, with tax day upon us, the situation is quite reversed. We Americans are now over represented (in that those representatives want to "help" in every facet of our lives) AND over taxed (to pay for all that help.)
A study recently released by the Tax Policy Center finds that about 47 percent of Americans will pay NO federal income taxes for 2009. In 2007, the top 10% of taxpayers paid over 71% of all personal income taxes according to the National Taxpayers Union.

Ben Franklin said "When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic." Given the above, I fear we may be reaching that point. To alleviate the problem, I have a modest proposal. Our progressive friends are always most concerned about "fairness" when it comes to taxation. What could be fairer (and more appealing to progressives), than following the SECULAR golden rule "he who has the gold makes the rules." It is time to link representation WITH taxation. It can be achieved in two steps.

Step One: Make the right to vote in federal elections contingent upon having paid federal income taxes at least once during the previous two years (to match election cycles). The language could easily be modeled after the 26th Amendment : "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall be contingent upon paying federal income taxes at least once in the two years prior to an election."

Implementation of Step One could be fairly simple, when you show up at the polls you have to show your voter registration card and tax return validated by the IRS. The work could easily be done by 12,000 extra IRS agents recently added by the health care bill. With this change, our representatives would truly be motivated to start paying attention to the taxpayer since the taxpayer is the only one who can vote for them. As a bonus, it will motivate citizens that don't pay taxes to step up and do their part in order to participate in the democratic process.

Over time, Step One may not be enough. A clever Congress could rig the income tax code so that everyone pays at least one dollar and we'll be back where we started. Also, is it really fair that someone in the top tax bracket gets the same vote as someone in a lower tax bracket? Fortunately, the federal government's takeover of private industry shows us the way.

Step Two: "What's good for General Motors is good for the country." Since we now "own" GM and other "private" entities we can easily adopt the proxy voting systems used in corporate America for federal elections (in corporate elections each shareholder gets voting power in proportion to shares owned). Each eligible voter would have a total number of votes equal to the dollar amount paid in personal federal income taxes over the previous two years. If you paid $20,000 in taxes you get 20,000 votes. If you paid $200,000 in taxes you get 200,000 votes. Again, what could be fairer?

There will be challenges. We'll need to prevent fraud (especially since the current system has no fraud), and we may need special training for Broward County. We also need to accept the fact that Bill Gates alone may elect the entire Washington State Congressional delegation and Warren Buffett may do the same for Nebraska. All in all, a small price to pay to preserve the Republic and put money back into its rightful place in politics. Power to the Taxpayer!


M Allen Fritsch is an entrepreneur and business owner. He is a graduate of the United States Military Academy and a former Army officer. He is one of the 53% of Americans that WILL pay federal taxes in 2009.



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