My thought process at 5:00AM, I wish my thoughts could flow this easily during the day.
My conclusion, taxation is absolutely theft. But the real question is, can theft be moral? If all morals are subjective, but many people decide that theft is bad, then aren’t people just being intellectually inconsistant? Or is it the kidnapping and being thrown into a cage (arrest) if you refuse theft (taxation) that is immoral? Or is it the murder resulting in refusal to be kidnapped that is immoral? If the penalty of refusing taxation is reduced just to nothing, then the government is just reduced to a thief. In the current system, government can be a thief, a hostage taker, and a murderer.
Now is it immoral not to pay taxes? I can’t think of a reason why it would be. It seems to be the most peaceful of all options. Voluntary taxation is obviously an oxymoron, with that said, what is government without taxation? Is government truly an institution built on force and violence? Could there be another way?
Government taxes the product of our labor by claiming that it owns that product. Taxes are involuntary, so government claims we do not own the product of our labor lest taxation be called theft. If we don’t pay we are thieves and thieves are arrested and thrown in prison. If we try to make off with our money by avoiding arrest we are killed like robbers. If we own our bodies, but we don’t own the product of our labor, nor can we put into our bodies what we want, nor can we use our bodies how we wish, nor can we do with the product of our labor what we wish: what do we really own?
Are we slaves? Does slavery fall under the same level of moral subjectivity as theft? If so, what if I chose that I do not want to be a slave? All people who use government just wish to own each other. Or to use government so much that they are owned less than everyone else. And there are the few mega-elite that are barely owned by anyone else at all, as a matter of fact, they do most of the owning. Is government just an elaborate system of serfdom?
So if this is true, moral subjectivism would say this is neither good nor bad. Whether people should own other people is purely subjective. But often we are intellectually inconsistent. As owning people 200 years ago was considered good by many, government ownership of people is considered good today. In 200 years, I wonder if there will still be government, or if it will be a relic of the past like so many other hurdles of human history. To imagine a world without government, is like imagining a world where cars exist from the viewpoint of a 15th century farmer. I think humanity will evolve to a point where we don’t need government, and I believe more and more people are realizing their own independence as free human beings, instead of property. If freedom is the capacity to grow oneself by making mistakes and being independent, then no amount of flag toting will ever mean freedom. Maybe 200 years is a bit of a stretch, but I have faith in humanity to take its first lesson in freedom from government.