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From taxation to dividends

Written by Louis Even on Monday, 01 March 1954. Posted in Crisis, Social Credit

A Social Credit community would distribute dividends to all its members. These dividends would add dollars to the buyer's pocket without adding one cent to the price of goods. Not coming through industry, Social Credit dividends do not figure in financial costs. They are a claim on goods, but not an element in prices.

Taxation works the opposite way. Taxation paid by individuals, as income tax or sales tax, subtracts money from the buyer's pocket. Taxation paid by industry adds to the price of goods.

The taxation road cannot lead to a dividend world. And Social Crediters have to fight taxation as doggedly as they demand dividends to all.

Taxation increases the power of government over the individuals. Dividends would bring independence to individuals.

Since 1914, there has been a constant increase in taxation. Since 1914, there has been a decreasing proportion of independent individuals. Since 1914 also, government has been centralizing power more and more. All countries tend towards some form of totalitarian states.

Mankind is moving towards a totalitarian policy, which is the exact contrary of a Social Credit policy. More and more taxation, more and more bureaucracy. More and more depersonalisation of the individual.

The gears must be reversed.

∗ ∗ ∗

You are living, lest us say, in a town called A, and you decide to go to B, located 200 miles east from your place. You get into a car and ask the driver to transport you to B.

Now, if your driver takes the wrong road, and after a couple hours, you find yourself 80 miles west, what will you do? Will you let him go on, just reasserting your intention of going to B?

No, of course. The first thing to do is to tell the driver to stop: every new mile of road would be another mile further away from your goal. Then, you instruct your driver to turn back. You will have to cover the same stretch of road again, but in the opposite direction.

For 80 miles, you will still be west of your starting point; but every single mile back is now one mile towards B.

You have to undo what has been done. But you are doing exactly as much to shorten the distance between you and your goal each mile of retreat from the west, as you will do later in a mile between A and B.

So it is in a world engaged on the taxation road. If you want to reach the dividend world, you have first to call a halt on the taxation road. To oppose all raise in taxation. Then, to fight for lower taxation: lower taxation without any decrease in social services.

Every victory against taxation is a step towards dividends. A dollar less in taxation relieves the individual as much as would a dollar more in dividends.

* * *

If you have a notion of Algebra, you know what the signs — (minus) and + (plus) mean. Zero (0) separates the negative side from the positive side. On the negative side, you have -1, -2,... -20... On the positive side: +1, +2,... +20,...

The negative side is the taxation side; the higher the figure, the less you hold. The positive side is the dividend side; the higher the figure, the more you have.

But, being on the negative side, if you want to go to the positive side, you must pass through lower and lower negative figures. To pass from - 20 to - 19, then to -18,... to -1, to zero. It is only when you have reached the zero point that you can shift to the positive side, to the dividend side, from + 1 up.

And the step between -20 and -19 is exactly equivalent to the step between -1 and 0, or between 0 and + 1, or between +19 and +20.

Some might be tempted to say:

"Well, we are so far on the negative side, our taxation figures are so high, that the positive side, the dividend, is unthinkable.”

Or:

“What then is the use of talking about dividends to all as long as taxation is here?”

The answer is this:

“Whether you demand a Social Credit dividend based on the producing power of the country, and not on taxation; or whether you demand lower taxation without any decrease in social services — you are asking an impossible thing within the rules of the present financial system..

If you realize the same gain in passing from minus 5 to minus 4 as in passing from plus 4 to plus 5, the rules of debt finance are also equally at stake in both cases.

Many people feel much more keenly the burden of taxation than the absence of dividends. The idea of a national dividend to all seems to them something of a fairy tale; but the suggestion of lower taxation comes home right away.

And to lower taxation without decreasing social service necessitates the change that would render the dividend feasible.

Other people, not paying direct taxation, and not knowing that the price they pay for every article they buy includes taxes paid by others, — otherwise, being almost totally deprived of purchasing power — will be more amenable to the proposition of a dividend to all.

The message can be presented both ways; and pressure can be directed both ways, according to circumstances. There is no contradiction.

The fight for dividend without taxation and the fight for lower taxation without curtailing social services are one and the same fight.

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