Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Letters to the Editor

June 5, 2014

Some U.S. laws appear tyrannical

— — Should citizens of integrity obey the law? Absolutely. But, when lawmakers are increasingly seen as lawbreakers, otherwise law-abiding citizens begin to question the lawmaker’s authority and obligation to laws made. When laws are selectively applied like the IRS, impossible to understand, or just to tedious to comply with, these questions are contemplated. Montesquieu said it concisely, “Useless laws weaken the necessary laws.”  Too many of our laws are not just “useless,” but I would argue tyrannical. Historical examples are instructive.

Before the Nazis descent into full blown evil they used bureaucracy to intimidate the Confessing Church affiliated with Dietrich Bonhoeffer. In his book “Bonhoeffer,” Eric Metaxas describes the Nazi’s “ever-increasing and ever-tightening regulations.” Another church pastor, Eberhard Bethge, is quoted describing methods “not so much aimed at banning the Confessing Church directly, but gradually liquidating it through intimidation and the suppression of individual activities.”

Another example is found in our own Declaration of Independence describing the bureaucracy of King George III. Jefferson writes, “He has erected a multitude of new offices and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.”

I am not calling anyone a Nazi, nor am I saying that we are headed for monarchy. But Americans are a freedom loving and have proudly prevailed against the previous examples. When our government’s methods cast shadows that remind us of these it should be a sober warning. Clearly that “swarm,” the IRS, had a problem with the “individual activities” of the Tea Party. The IRS abused their power to “harass.” They threw away equal protection under the law and the trust of the American people. I’ve asked state lawmaker’s to end the continuous tedium on all West Virginians that is the West Virginia Purchaser’s Use Tax; they have proposed new taxes instead.

I’ve also seen no public statements from our congressional  delegation on the IRS abuse. I have long given up expectations of anything courageous from Congressman Rahall. He has presided over the mess without objection for too long. I do expect great things from Joe Manchin. They are all in session deciding our fate. If you do not want bureaucrats to continue to “eat out [your] substance,” you might want to give them a call. Be free America!

Roger Houston

Princeton

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