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Thursday, November 4, 2021

Was Jesus a tax protestor?

 Previously: Gadiantons And The State



What did Jesus mean?

Jesus once told a couple of snarky Pharisees to "render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's." Biblical scholars and religious pundits have debated this verse endlessly trying to determine what Jesus meant. Are we supposed to pay taxes like good little citizens? Does Caesar (the government) have a right to collect taxes? Or was the Lord just being sarcastic? Apparently, all the Pharisees could do was "marvel" at Jesus' brilliance in snaring them. 

This blog post will not be an attempt at deciphering that scripture. For all we know it was Jesus' way of getting the annoying Pharisees to shut up and be on their way. But it does bring up a good question: what constitutes the "things that are Caesar's"? 

In my last post I postulated that the State is not a legitimate organization because it can only exist through "predatory" means, i.e., coercion and theft. It does not produce, so anything Caesar gets has to be extracted from Caesar's subjects. According to natural law, those "things" do not belong to someone who did not produce, sell, or trade them voluntarily. So why would Jesus concede that Caesar is worthy of having stolen items rendered to him? 

To make us think. An exercise in rhetorical logic. Caesar does not have any thing but God has created everything. What Jesus is presenting is a logical paradox in parable form. What he really means is Caesar is nothing and God is everything. He is taking the argument to its logical conclusion and showing the absurdity of it all; Caesar, the emperor, has no clothes! But everything belongs to God. Brilliant! But I don't need to use the Bible to prove that God loathes taxation.

Enter the Book of Mormon

There are four instances in the Book of Mormon that mention taxes. In each one the practice is unequivocally condemned. The first time the word appears in the text it is uttered from the lips of King Benjamin, who declares that he labored for his own support and did not "laden" his people with taxes. Laden means weigh down, which is exactly what taxes do to people; like stacking bricks on someone's back. Think of the sheer irony of the Book of Mormon: A king announces to his people that he's had a job all along and that he didn't tax them. It doesn't get more un-Babylonian than that. God is making a point; we should pay attention. 

The next reference comes five chapters later, when Ammon and his brethren, on an errand from King Mosiah, run into King Limhi and his people in the wilderness. They have found themselves in bondage to the Lamanites, paying a 50% tax on literally everything they produce. When Limhi discovers that Ammon is a fellow Zarahemla-ite, he rejoices and rationalizes that if their long-lost brethren could deliver them out of bondage it would be better to be "slaves to the Nephites than pay tribute to the king of the Lamanites."

Now we all know the story: after they escape Lamanite bondage, King Mosiah receives them with joy, but Limhi's willingness to become a voluntary slave to escape a "grievous" tax should tell us something. Any degree of taxation is indeed a form of slavery. The definition of a slave is someone whose labor and body has been hijacked by another. In the case of taxation, our labor is stolen from us; the average blue-collar worker in America labors for three to five months out of the year to pay the government. Welcome to modern slavery. 

And now we come to king Noah. Here we get into what the taxes were actually used for. His 20% tax, less than what most middle class Americans pay, was used for a bunch of public works projects, that benefited, well, king Noah and his cronies. Many elegant buildings, a spacious palace and throne, a tower, a winery, and a re-modeling of the temple. Ah but didn't these create a lot of jobs? Didn't these public works bolster an otherwise sluggish Nephite economy? Perhaps to the naked eye this would seem so. The skilled artisans hired by the companies awarded the government contracts surely benefited. But what of the unseen? Where would that 20% have gone if left in the hands of those who created it? What businesses and industries would the Nephites have built and invested in that would have benefited the entire society? We'll never know.

It was Noah and his priests who were the primary beneficiaries of this system, which supported their wives and concubines, and allowed them to live riotously as a gang of thieves living off of the spoils of the Nephite producers. Thus, Mormon observes, "he had changed the affairs of the kingdom."1

1. By the way, there are striking similarities between king Noah and Brigham Young: both created theocracies, both lived off the taxes/tithes from the people, both had multiple wives, both altered the doctrines of Christ, both practiced priestcraft, and both constructed buildings and wineries with public funds. This is a discussion for another time, but the commonalities are creepily eerie. For a comprehensive comparison of Brigham and Noah, see King Brigham, on the blog Seeking YHWH. 

Again we should ask: what is God trying to teach us in these verses? Why tell us about a tax, a wicked king, and a bunch of beautiful and elaborate buildings? What good are the scriptures if we don't apply them? To understand what God is teaching us in these verses, we have to look at our own history. 

Economics in one lesson

The above subheading is the title of Henry Hazlitt's bestselling book, the only book you'll ever need to read on economics. It will put you leaps and bounds above mainstream economists. Hazlitt systematically destroys every Keynesian myth that pervades our economic system today. I briefly mention the book because (spoiler alert) I am about to reveal that one lesson: 
"The art of economics consists of looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups." (p. 2)

God hates taxes because they are levied by coercion and "bring men on to unequal grounds." Every tax or economic policy legislated by government causes a ripple effect. The result of which is that one group or individual always benefits at the expense of another. Murray Rothbard, citing John C. Calhoun, explained that in society there are two groups of individuals: "the taxpayers and the tax consumers--those who are burdened by taxes and those who benefit" (Man, Economy, and State p. 1151). It is usually not hard to figure out who the tax consumers are: leaders of government who pay no taxes and those who are subsidized by them. The losers are everyone else in society. 

Now that you're a master in economics, let's get back to Mosiah. Noah's programs were carefully designed to enrich him and his crony priests, but how did he get support for them? It is true that his people were paying a substantial tax but what did he offer them in return? I admit I'm reading between the lines here  (isn't that the point of this blog?) but the spacious buildings, palace, tower, and winery did get built. A significant portion of the economy had to be involved to accomplish this: skilled labor, material suppliers and manufacturers, contractors, artists, architects, etc. What motivated them? Could it have been the lure of government contracts, not having to compete, above market labor rates, more profits for owners? Did Noah pick winners and losers; were there backroom deals made in the mist of cigar smoke and freshly fermented wine? 

You'll never read Mosiah 11 the same now, but the point is to think about why that information is in there. And consider verse 7: not only were king Noah and his priests labeled as idolaters by Mormon, but his people were also. Why? Because they believed the "flattering" words that were spoken to them by these liars. In other words, they bought into their programs, they liked them, they voted for them, and consequently, they were "deceived" by them. The very people he was fleecing were idolizing him! Are you beginning to see the picture that God is painting for you?

What they really do with your tax dollars: The Credit Mobilier Scam

We have often heard that American infrastructure was built upon public works. For instance, where would our roads, trains, bridges, dams, canals, subways, highways, etc., have come from if not financed by the government? Ah, but remember this is only what is seen, not what is unseen. For those familiar with Frederick Bastiat you will know what I'm talking about. The seen represents what we see right in front of us: roads to drive on, jobs created by the public works, the Hoover Dam, the Brooklyn Bridge, the transcontinental railroads, the Panama Canal, and the politicians patting themselves on the back for spearheading these accomplishments. The unseen, are the thousands upon thousands of jobs not created in the private sector because of taxes that were forcibly taken from them. These resources were not left in the hands of those who rightfully earned them, and therefore could not be used for the ends or goals of those individuals; whether to hoard for the future, or invest in some new market innovation. 

Furthermore, the true tragedy of the unseen, are the thousands of products, new technologies, nuanced innovations, and real jobs that never come into existence. They are simply not allowed to exist, because resources are siphoned off to elites who hire their buddies for projects that we don't necessarily need. But Anderson you say, how else could America have established its infrastructure? Aren't there some things free markets just won't produce? The answer is no; the market would have produced them according to need, a hell of a lot better and at a fraction of the cost. I'm going to add a third tier to Bastiat's Broken Window Fallacy, the mostly unseen: the behind the scenes corruption that transpires between politicians and private businessmen, covered up by court historians and expunged down the memory hole of establishment American history. Every single public or quasi-public "good" is fraught with such pork barrel chicanery, cronyism, and outright fraud. 

During the 1850s, railroads were beginning to stretch all over the east. Like steamships, they began by connecting close cities, rarely covering more than about thirty miles. As technology increased, the rails covered larger and broader areas until they had spread everywhere but west of the Mississippi river. The boon to the economy was substantial and helped to create the bonanza that led to the industrial revolution. Trade centers no longer had to be located along waterways, and businesses could sell to a broader range of clientele by way of shipping. The once isolated economy was becoming ubiquitous as artisans and blacksmiths morphed into specialized labor and factories. America had just defeated Mexico and taken control of what is now the contiguous United States. There was no doubt, railroads had to move westward. And during the 1860s, move they did. 

There were vast swaths of land controlled by the federal government between California and the Mississippi river, endless hosts of hostile Indians, and untouched pristine farmland. This was the perfect opportunity for the Republican Party, the political offspring of the Whigs and adherents of Hamiltonian nationalism, to implement yet another round of British mercantilism

Enter the transcontinental railroads: the Central Pacific, the Union Pacific, the Southern Pacific, and the Northern Pacific. According to Murray Rothbard, in his posthumously published book, The Progressive 

these railroad organizations were a melding of congressmen, senators, military personnel, and private business interests. The way it worked was that a group of businessmen would come up with an investment, not for the capital of starting a railroad, but for lobbying congress to obtain a federal charter. Once the charter was secured, the door was opened for federal land grants, taxpayer subsidized bonds, aid from state and local governments, and the use of the military to 'socialize the cost' of forcibly removing the hostile Indians.1

1. Socializing the cost means using tax payer dollars for the purpose of personal gain. In this case General Grenville Dodge took Northern soldiers from the front lines of the Civil War to  the Midwest to forcibly clear Indians off the subsidized lands given to the railroads. 


Once the company was formed, they would create another company within the company, a separate legal construction entity with a different name that was financed by the mother company. This corporation would build the railroads and pay the subcontractors and laborers, as well as the pseudo "owners." Rothbard says that the businessmen would "mulct" themselves by charging the mother company "highly inflated constructions costs." (p. 43) The excess would be siphoned off into their pockets, given to politicians involved in the deal, and used for continued lobbying for more land grants and subsidized loans. Only the top insiders of the UP controlled the construction company, so other owners, i.e., shareholders and bondholders, were the ones who got fleeced. In the case of the Credit Mobilier, the name of the construction company created for the Union Pacific, they were granted 12 million acres of federal land and given a bond subsidy of $27 million. The Credit Mobilier billed out $94 million for the UP's construction when the actual costs were only $44 million. (p. 44) The other $50 million simply disappeared... into the Gadianton underworld.

One of the main beneficiaries, congressional representative Oaks Ames of Massachusetts, unscrupulously handed out free stock certificates to several other politicians in congress to keep them in the UP’s good graces. Rothbard reveals the names of several of these "Railway Congressmen," as well as others like the contemporary Vice President, Secretary of the Treasury, Senators, and a future president (p. 45).  Ames just happened to be a shovel manufacturer, and I bet you can't guess which company got the shovel contract for the Union Pacific Railroad... this is just how things are done in politics. It's nothing personal, it's just business. 

As comedian George Carlin once quipped, "its a big club and you ain't in it."  Look, don't fool yourselves, no figure in American history is above reproach. If they were a politician, chances are they benefited from some tax or program (except Ron Paul). As much as I admire George Washington, he wasn't good in office. When Hamilton pressed him to sign the first charter of the Bank of the United States, he only agreed to do so in exchange for the government to sell him cheap land adjacent to Washington D.C. and close to his own property at Mount Vernon, because he knew it would go up in value and make him a quick buck. Remember what the prophet said, "almost all men" abuse power.

A Real American Hero

American history is full of forgotten heroes, heroes on whose backs the real American economy was built. This is the story of one man who built a railroad across the Northern United States, east to west, through rugged mountains and hostile Indian territories, and without a dime of federal or state money. The information that follows was obtained from two highly recommended books: The Myth of the Robber Barons by Burton Folsom Jr., and How Capitalism Saved America by Thomas J. DiLorenzo. 

The Lone Ranger of laisses-faire that emerged to compete with the transcontinental railroads was none other than James J. Hill. Hill was a Canadian by birth and had somewhat of a rough upbringing. A bow and arrow accident left him blind in one eye and in his teenage years he dropped out of school to work as a grocer to support his recently widowed mother. Despite his humble beginnings, Hill was able to purchase the Minnesota Railroad, which had been owned by the Northern Pacific and gone bankrupt. Being a market entrepreneur, Hill dreamed of a railroad extending all the way to the Pacific Ocean, but unlike his competitors, he faced the daunting task of doing it without federal land grants or subsidies. His dream culminated in the construction of the Great Northern Railroad, the only transcontinental railroad built by free market means. 

The Great Northern hugged the U.S and Canadian border all the way from St. Paul to Seattle. Hill took great measures in construction, using only the highest quality materials. For example, before the late 1800s, American steel was inferior to foreign steel, so Hill imported expensive Bessemer rails from abroad and used durable wood to lay his rails on. He was also a bridge builder. The Stone Arch Bridge that Hill built across the Mississippi River became a Minneapolis landmark. In contrast, General Greenville Dodge, an engineer for the Union Pacific, used fragile cottonwood and light wrought iron steel for his tracks. In times when wood supply was short the UP would hire “tie-cutters” at high wages and offer daily bonuses for extra hauls. Because survey lines were not clearly established the tie-cutters would often trespass on the property of farmers who were obliged to defend their land with rifles. Hill avoided this problem by being honest and purchasing his materials from merchants (Folsom pp. 16-18, 26). 

Hill purchased land acre by acre as he built his road westward. Dodge was granted the land and given permission to pull Union troops from the Civil War front to clear Indians for the railroad. Instead of resorting to violence, Hill traded peacefully with the natives by purchasing land in voluntary agreements. He was also generous to his employees, paying fair wages, spelling them for coffee breaks, and sometimes physically laboring alongside them. Hill’s philanthropy also extended to his clients. In addition to slashing railway rates, he would offer special services to farmers by stockpiling firewood at train stations, which they were encouraged to take after bringing a delivery. He gave grain seed and cattle to farmers who had suffered economically, and donated lands for parks, schools, and churches in cities located along his route. He offered immigrants a ride from the eastern seaboard to the Great Plains for only $10 if they agreed to settle and farm along his railroad. His motto to his clientele was “we have got to prosper with you or we have got to be poor with you”. 

Hill was adamant about finding the shortest possible route to the West. After studying the trail of Lewis and Clark he hired a man to find the acclaimed Maria Pass, a discovery that saved him almost 100 miles of track. On the other hand, Dodge, along with the other subsidized roads, were paid per mile of track, which created an incentive to build roads in much longer routes and to do it as quickly as possible. Consequently, routes were built shoddy and haphazard, winding and zig-zagging all over the country. Dodge even built over ice and snow in the winter so he could collect subsidies before spring, which had to be rebuilt the following summer. By the time the Panic of 1873 hit the American economy, nearly all the subsidized transcontinental railroads had gone bankrupt, partly due to Hill’s magnificent competition and reduction of rates (DiLorenzo pp.112-120).

The problem with this historical account is that it is strangely absent from establishment textbooks, except that Hill is briefly mentioned as a railroad "Robber Baron." The Gadiantons have to convince you that infrastructure would not have come into existence without their "wise and prudent" public works programs, and that market entrepreneurs are the real thieves. In reality just the opposite is true.  We live in an upside down universe; nothing is as it seems. 

Ether Chapter Ten: A Compendium

Jaredite history, condensed into Moroni's short abridgement, is loaded with anthropological richness. The final place that taxes are mentioned in the BOM is in the tenth chapter of Ether. Like King Noah (and Brigham Young, for that matter), Riplakish also had "many wives and concubines," taxed his people with "heavy taxes," and built "many spacious buildings." Again we see this pattern of polygamy, high taxes, and large public works programs. Riplakish also built "many prisons," mostly for tax protestors and the poor who were "not able to pay taxes." These he forced to labor in prison camps, yes gulags, where goods were produced with slave labor. And if they refused to labor they were simply executed. 

Sound familiar? Bear in mind that the BOM was published one hundred years before the Nazi, Fascist, and Communist regimes began doing this very thing. God issued his warning against Satanic ideology for our day in these very pages. We should not pass lightly over any word, phrase, or verse in the Book of Mormon. Every teaching contained in its pages, hidden in plain sight, is calculated to reveal to us the inner workings of God, Satan, and man. Every ideology, and every philosophy that defines how human beings behave, think, and govern each other, is in there. You just have to open your mind and look. Over the coming months I’m planning on blogging about some of these concepts. 

After forty-two years the subjects of Riplakish had had enough. They rose up in rebellion and overthrew him. Morianton comes along and raised an army of "outcasts," and after many years of battle he made himself the de facto king. But the people liked him and eventually anointed him to be their real king. He did justice to the people but not himself (he was a womanizer). Now this next part is interesting:
And it came to pass that Morianton built up many cities, and the people became exceedingly rich under his reign, both in buildings, and in gold and silver, and in raising grains, and in flocks, and herds, and such things had been restored unto them. (Ether 10:12)

Can see you that one lesson in economics being taught here? The heavy burdens of taxation had either been eliminated or lowered substantially, and what happens? The people become rich. They were given economic freedom, because they had their property rights restored to them. As we read along in the chapter we find that kings were displaced and overthrown by small cadres of royals, but for the most part they left the people alone. When Lib comes along, he did "good in the sight of the Lord," and the economy grew into a highly complex system of specialized labor:

And they were exceedingly industrious, and they did buy and sell and traffic one with another, that they might get gain. (v. 22)

They specialized in mining, blacksmithing, foundry, textiles, agriculture, and weapons and tools production. This would have required manufacturers, wholesalers, distributers, retailers, and even street peddlers. They used "beasts" in their farming which would have required a harness industry, lumber industries, leather, steel blades for plowing, feed lots for animals, livestock auctions, grazing land. Are you getting the picture?  It's incredible how the free market produces a host of both capital and retail goods, without any coercion, central planning, or government intervention. Consider the complexity that goes into the production of even a simple pencil in this classic article by Leonard E. Reed. The Jaredites "did all manner of... exceedingly curious workmanship," which is only possible in an atmosphere of Laissez-Faire. 

Now we come to the final lesson of Ether 10: enter the Gadiantons. 

Notice that throughout the Book of Mormon the Gadiantons always appear when the people are prosperous? Like cockroaches they come out of the woodwork when there are spoils to harvest. Also notice that they come at a time when there are great divisions among the people. Com had split the kingdom against Amgid, and eventually won out, but just at that moment, when we can assume his people were exhausted from battle, the robbers came:

And in the days of Com there began to be robbers in the land; and they adopted the old plans, and administered oaths after the manner of the ancients, and sought again to destroy the kingdom. Now Com did fight against them much; nevertheless, he did not prevail against them. (v. 33-34)

 In my last post I showed that Gadiantons have been in America  since before its founding, but I want to make a clarification. There were always Gadiantons in government but they did not have full control until the Wilson Administration. During the American industrial revolution of the 19th century, the plundering of Gadiantons was confined to certain industries where government intervened, like railroads. But in 1913 all that changed. With the passing of the federal reserve act, the income tax, and the seventeenth Amendment, a full-scale subversion of the America government and economy was possible. They had control of the money supply, they had unlimited access to inflation, they could engineer and finance massive world wars, they could tax your labor and make you a slave, and they could buy out and control Senators through bribery and corruption (the 17th Amendment allowed the popular election of Senators instead of them being appointed by the state legislators, which kept power more localized in congressional districts). 

The Gadiantons use social division as a tool to propagandize and enslave humanity. This is a part of those "old plans" passed down since the devil first revealed to Cain how to murder for gain. These old plans are a hierarchical religion with Lucifer, the "Light Bearer," at the center of worship, whom they believe to be the real god of this world. These ancient oaths and teachings have been passed down through the Mystery Schools, what John calls Mystery Babylon, the Mother of Harlots, in the book of Revelation. In my next blog post I am going to get into the specifics of their "plans," which consist of a social blueprint to control the masses. Stay tuned...

Next: Mystery Babylon: Into the Abyss

3 comments:

  1. Senators were appointed ny state legislatures not the house prior to the 17th amendment. Senators were therefore responsible to and for actual states while the house was responsible to and for citizens in their districts.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Right. Thanks for pointing that out.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Watch:
    Adolf Hitler The Greatest Story NEVER Told
    (great information, paradigm shift ;))

    ReplyDelete

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